Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Himalayan Dog Chews




I am always on the market for good alternatives to rawhide, as you know, I believe rawhide is far too dangerous to feed. I just tried a new chew treat, and I'm pretty happy with the results. Recently, I bought two different brands of himalayan or churpi dog chews. One, was made by the Himalayan Dog Chew company, and the other was made by Churpi Chews and produced by QT Dog Chews. Both brands contain four simple ingredients: yak milk, cow milk, salt, and lime juice. The treats are all natural, and contain no additives or chemicals, which is nice to find in a dog product. Both brands have the exact same guaranteed analysis, same color, same shape, and same scent.

I decided to give this new chew a try after reading about it in a few articles, and it did not disappoint. These treats come from an ancient recipe that the people of the Nepal Himalayas have been making for generations. These chews are actually made for humans from an ancient recipe that locals can use as a snack that they slowly work in their mouths throughout the day while working in the fields. Of course, knowing the origin of the treat, I had to give it a try myself before I gave it to Milly. And, it didn't taste bad, but I don't think I'll be knawing on one myself again. It has a slight parmesean cheese flavor, and a smokey aroma, that smells nice to me, and tastes like Heaven for Milly.



Milly has tried both brands, and she hasn't even made a dent in them after hours of chewing. This is an incredibly long lasting treat, but I do recommend making sure to get a size appropriate for your dog. I went with the Jumbo size, and it is just right. In order to eat the treat, dogs must slowly work the end of the treat for hours, softening it with their mouths before small parts of it can slowly be scraped off and dissolved. This treat is actually a type of Himalayan cheese, that is long lasting and naturally preserved with lime juice and salt.

Milly seems to really love this treat. The process of which the treat is made, and the use of yak milk, makes it easily digestible for dogs. This said, this treat is extremely high in protein, and if you feed it, especially to an older dog, I would recommend limiting the amount of time your dog can chew on it, and then cutting your dog's next meal back in size to prevent diarrhea. I've found Milly can safely enjoy this chew for about an hour and a half, and then I cut her next meal back by 30% without any diarrhea. However, I am not a veterinarian, and this is simply what works for me and my particular dog.

These chew treats are not all cheap, but in the case of Milly, they last a long time. I paid about $15 for each treat, which to me is quite a bit of money. That said, you probably get 10 times the chew time out of these than you would a bully stick. I purchased one of mine from Best Bully Sticks, and the other from Wylie Wagg in Arlington, VA.

All in all, I give this product 4-stars and 4-paws. This might be Milly's new flavorite treat! Just make sure to supervise your dog with this, like you would any chew, and remember, it is very high in protein and can be overdone, especially with older dogs.



5 comments:

  1. My Mom feeds those to her dogs and they love them. Just a warning though, my black lab devoured one in a day and got pretty sick.

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  2. I'll have to check those out. My two pit bulls can go through a rawhide in 5 minutes. We've given them deer and elk antlers before and they last forever.

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  3. Hi Miss Muddy Paws! Thanks for promoting this great treat. I agree that it is great alternative to many of the not so healthy treats that are very popular. This is one of many great "safer" alternatives. One tip that I have learned if your dog is a gulper. When the dog nears the end of the Himalayan and the piece has dwindled down to a size he/she may gulp, put it in the microwave for about 10 seconds. It will transform the treat to a larger chunk that is more easily chewed and the dog will likely crunch it up and swallow it safely!
    You may want to check out the deer antlers too. We have found them to be awesome for most dogs and if durability is important there is not a better option. No stink, no mess, no splinter, all natural. Only caution is if your dog does not have strong healthy teeth be careful. Healthy teeth will stay clean and healthy with this awesome chew.
    If you have questions let me know.
    George Richter
    dogdogcat.com

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  4. Too bad that a recipe cannot be found to make your own. Yes Yak's milk would be hard to come by but wonder if you could substitute with another animals milk. Would like to try but alas have not found a recipe only instructions. For someone who prefers to make her own dogs treats so I know they are safe and where they came from it would be nice to have. I am sure that it is not something too many people would attempt! :-)

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    1. Here is how, the chews are made using the ancient recipe and techniques, that is still prevalent in the Himalayas.
      Sounds like a lot of work...

      Each Farmer has 2-5 cows and yaks that they milk everyday, using traditional method, without any modern devices. The cattles are fed all natural leaves from the forest and graze on natural pastures where present. They collect roughly 6 gallons to make 2 pounds of Himalayan Dog Chew. On average, each farmer makes about 20 pounds per month.

      The milk is boiled for 4-5 hours. The hot milk is poured into a hand-cranked centrifuge device, some using more traditional methods, to remove all the fat. The fat is boiled to make local butter called “Ghee”, and are sold as a separate commodity. The fat-free milk obtained is used to make the Himalayan Dog Chew.

      Once the milk has cooled down, it is treated with 10 ml of lime juice and 10 mg salt for about 100 gallons of milk. The sour of the mild acid coagulates the milk and the salt speeds up the process. The solids are then separated using a burlap sac, which is washed several times using warm water to remove the whey, and any hints of salt and lime juice.

      The solids in the burlap sac is then subjected to squeezing for about 3 weeks, when the cake obtained contains at most 5% moisture. They use bricks as weights and shaper, with sac of moist chew in the middle.

      The cake is then cut to size and prepared for cooking under the sun and smoke for 2-3 months. They are strung through ropes and hung for drying/cooking.

      These chews are collected from the farmers and brought into our warehouse, which are sorted for quality. The best 10-15% are retained for Himalayan Dog Chew, and the remaining 85-90% are either sold in local market (in Nepal) for human consumption and other purposes.

      The chews are further cleaned using buffing machines and lime juice, and cut to size, then packaged and shipped to dealers from our facility in Washington State.

      http://www.himalayandogchew.com/

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