Raw Food Success Stories

We love our customers, and we love it even more when they tell us how raw pet food has helped keep their fur baby around longer. Raw pet food can heal, and we want more pet parents to hear the message. If you have a story to share, scroll to the bottom of the page and tell us all about it. Be sure to let us know if you don’t want it posted on our website.

This e-mail from Michigan demonstrates how a raw diet free from cheap fillers can help with allergies.

“I just wanted to share my story as it is a true success! We have a 15-year-old Papillon that is just 5 pounds. The last several years she suffered from a bad cough. They could never really explain it when we would ask her veterinarian. We switched to Steves Real Food (frozen chicken) approximately one year ago. We were so amazed and happy to see our little girl’s cough go away completely. Later, upon talking to other Steve Real Food customers, we were told that she probably had an allergy to all something that was in the typical dog foods. We always used a very good brand, but it still had something that she was allergic to. She is 15 going on 16 now and not only LOVES her Steves food, but her health is just amazing to us since we changed her diet. She is also able to climb stairs again which we are not sure about, but it’s a good thing….

Thank you for such a wonderful product!!! We will never go back to anything else.

The Schoen family
Redford, Michigan”

Here is an e-mail that comes to us from Pahrump, Nevada. Taylor is participating in our veterinary feeding trial. We have given Taylor 60 days worth of free food while he is being supervised by his veterinarian for arthritis.

“Taylor just had his 30 day check up with Dr. Henseler last Saturday. I’m pleased with the results.

1. Energy level is increased. Now, this could be related to the weight loss (Taylor has lost about 5 lbs since starting the diet)…but, what does it matter !!?? I was not able to help him lose the pounds while he was eating kibble. So, I think it’s great Steve’s Real Food was able to help me accomplish that goal – goodness knows, I’ve been trying for years! Dr. Henseler feels that he is now in the “ideal” category, but could maybe lose 2 more pounds – this would put him at 80 lbs. He’s an Allendale dog – they breed the English- type labradors, and they usually carry more bone and weight than the American bred labs.

2. His winter coat is completely shedded out and is a gorgeous, shiny, silky, summer coat. When I mentioned this to Dr. Henseler, I said that while I noticed a difference in his coat – I wasn’t that excited about it, his coat is usually pretty nice. Dr. Henseler told me, that is WAS a big deal because our weather was so goofy this spring that many of the dogs she was seeing – STILL had their rough winter coats.

3. Limping is decreased. I am fully aware that I may never be able to get rid of the limp completely (after all, he is almost 10). But, I am happy that it is lessened. Dr. Henseler also noticed that when Taylor gets up off the clinic floor, he doesn’t seem to be as stiff as in the past. Dr. Henseler would like to do a blood panel at our next visit (June 26th)just to make sure everything is in line…he had a blood panel done about a year and a half ago, so she has a pretty good baseline to compare. I see no problem with that.

Well, I just wanted to give you a brief update after our 30 days on Steve’s Real Food. Thank you again for your support with his feeding program – I think it’s going extremely well.

Valerie”

Here is a letter that came to us from Longwood, Florida. Not only is diet important for maintaining health, but as Kathy’s letter shows, diet can be a valuable tool for overcoming disease and illness.

“My name is Kathy Cochran and I do Sheltie Rescue in Longwood, Florida. I thought you might be interested to know about our little Rescued Sheltie named Hope that has been eating your food for about 2 months now.

Hope is a 16 yr. old Sheltie that was thrown out of a moving car. She has basically lost one eye due to head trauma and is dying of kidney failure…..at least that’s what my Vet (of over 10 years) told me last December.

A good friend of mine, Kathleen Prince, introduced me to your food after a store recently opened up here in our area (Louise’s Pet Connection in Lake Mary, Florida). I immediately went up and purchased 4 of the 10 lb. bags (we have 8 Shelties). I put Hope on the food right away and after only about a week, noticed that I wasn’t having to do Sub-Q fluids as often as I had been. She had more energy, wasn’t drinking as much water and just seemed to be more alert than we had ever seen her (we just rescued her last July).

After almost a month on the food, I took her back up to our Vet and had her kidney levels re-checked. There are 3 tests performed to determine kidney function in a dog (BUN, Creatinine and Phosphorus).< /p>

Please keep in mind (according to Dr. Marrinson at the Longwood Vet Clinic) that the BUN levels in kidney tests are “not” the most important factor when determining kidney function. BUN levels can change according to what a dog eats, the time the dog eats, etc. The Creatinine test IS the MOST important test in determining kidney function and Kidneys do NOT repair themselves.

Normal kidney function levels should be:
BUN = less than 30
Creatinine = 2
Phosphorus = low, normal, high ratio
Hope’s Before Steve’s Real Food, 12/2003:
BUN: 79 (failure)
Creatinine: 2.25 (failure)
Phosphorus: high ratio (failure)
After approx. 1 month on Steve’s, 4/ 2004:
BUN: 107 (failure)
Creatinine: 1.5 (normal)
Phosphorus: normal ration (normal)
 

 

Her Creatinine and Phosphorus have virtually returned to normal!!!!!!!! The dog is coming out of kidney failure and my Vet wanted to know if I was doing anything different than I had been over the past few months. I simply told him that I am now feeding her Steve’s Real Food …. all natural. That is the ONLY thing I have done different for her.

I just wanted to say a BIG thank you to all of you. This little girl deserves every bit of happiness that we can give her. Her life has been miserable for a very long time and I firmly believe that without your food, her life would be MUCH shorter. She had been given less than 6 months to live in December of 2003. It’s now the middle of May, 2004 and she going strong.

Thank you, thank you, thank you.
Sincerely,
Kathy Cochran”

Here is a letter that came to us from Eagle, Wisconsin. Not only is diet important for maintaining health, but as Janis’s letter shows, diet can be a valuable tool for overcoming disease and illness.

“I just wanted to take this opportunity to tell you what a tremendous difference your dog food has made for our dog. We have a 5 year old Bichon Frise who has had 3 surgeries for bladder stones. Two of those operations were within 6 months of each other. These surgeries, on top of being very expensive, were very hard on the dog. The recovery was difficult for us all.

I went to my local pet food store, Petilicious, and the owner, Dave Krause recommended your food. It has been 2 years and she is stone free.

Thanks very much for making such a fine product. Be sure to let me know if you ever decide to NOT manufacture this food. I need to be prepared!

Sincerely yours,
Janis K. Kloeffler”

Here is an e-mail that came to us from Glendale, California. A veterinarian is a valuable resource to the health of our pets, however as Mara’s e-mail show – sometimes its best to get a second opinion, or third, or fourth. “Dexter our 3-1/2 year old golden retriever began having serious trouble with cholitis early in 2003. Since he was a puppy we had been feeding him natural/organic kibble and canned food made from human grade food. Despite all efforts to firm up his stools with diet, the allopathic vet finally said that he would have to be on a constitutional treatment of antibiotics for the remainder of his life in order to control the cholitis. Obviously this was not an option, so after intense research online and through Whole Dog Journal, we started feeding Dexter Steve’s and had almost instant success. Dexter is a happy, healthy pooch with clear eyes, a shiny coat, lots of energy, and most importantly normal, solid stools. Thank you Steve’s for restoring Dexter’s health and his people-parents’ peace of mind. Mara and Dexter I did forget to mention in the story that it’s now the summer of 04 and we haven’t had a single episode of diarrhea since Dexter’s been on Steve’s.”
Dakota is a rescued eight-year-old Great Dane mix with a history of inflammatory bowel “disease/syndrome” and secondary lymphangiectasia. Throughout the course of our seven and a half years of being Dakota’s guardians, we have fed him countless (read: 20-plus!) brands of commercial pet food — in all forms! — and finally had the best results with almost 11 months on a homemade raw diet (which we had to warm up prior to serving, or he would vomit due to his “chronic” inability to digest cold food). True to form, Dakota told us when he could no longer tolerate this latest diet, which we saw coming a few weeks ago when he was beginning to take more time at meal times. Our top concern was the transition period, as it has typically been rather rough despite careful efforts to follow manufacturer instructions, and take it slowly. Every time, bar none, we waded through many days of gas, burping and soft stools, sometimes with mucus and straining. It was so hard to see Dakota go through these transitions, and now that he’s older we were hoping to avoid any belly issues, but we knew it was time for yet another change. After a great deal of research, we decided to try Steve’s raw frozen beef patties. On Day One, we offered a few bites of a warmed up patty during “training time” rather than meal time, in an effort to isolate the food and see how he took to it. Again true to form, Dakota threw us a curve ball. He gobbled up the bites of Steve’s even with FedEx truck distractions, and was an A+ “obedience” student — rare for this goofball. (We are usually happy with Bs and B-minuses.) Anyway, once training time was over, Dakota followed back into the kitchen, and put his head through the missing bowl hole in his feeder. We caved, and he got the rest of the patty and obnoxiously slurped the sides of the bowl, lifting it out of the feeder. We made him wait until dinner time before he got any more, and he promptly picked out the what-we-thought-was-carefully-mixed-in Steve’s food and left our homemade in the bowl. We added a bit more Steve’s, and he did the same thing. On Day Two, we tried a 50-50 ratio, after a gas-free, diarrhea-free night. Same deal. Poops were normal. No bloating, no gas. Needless to say, on Day Three, Dakota was fully transitioned to 100% Steve’s and we “gifted” a raw-food-feeding friend with Dakota’s 12 pounds of grass-fed beef homemade diet castoffs. This has never happened before, and we are crossing our fingers that things can only get better from here.”

Testimonial: “I foster dogs for the French Bulldog Rescue Network (FBRN). I would like to share the story of one of my recent foster dogs, Mambo.

Mambo was surrendered to FBRN in a vet’s parking lot, suffering from his second rectal prolapse in three weeks. The poor little mite, only a year old, was hunched over in agony. A 3-inch section of tissue protruded from his bottom, and every few moments, he strained and screamed in pain. Unfortunately, about 1-1/2 inches of his rectum was gangrenous, and had to be amputated. He underwent the necessary surgery and I took him home the next day.

For the first two weeks after surgery, Mambo had to eat a bland, canned diet, and was on antibiotics and medication to keep his poops liquid so that he wouldn’t tear his sutures. After four weeks, I began to experiment with his diet, to see if I could get him on a more manageable potty schedule. I tried a high-quality, grain-free kibble — It didn’t go well. I tried canned food — he gained weight, but he still pooped 8-12 times per day, including during the night, and there was a great deal of straining involved. I also tried a dehydrated formula, but it was very high in carbs, mostly potato, and this boy was an active one-year-old, and needed to put on lean muscle.

Finally, my thoughts turned to raw. I had several criteria in mind as I searched for a suitable product. The food could not contain ingredients which the allergy test indicated that Mambo might be sensitive to (including pumpkin). It had to contain high-quality, preferably human-grade proteins, organs, fish oils for omega-3 fatty acids, and vegetables and flaxseed for fiber. It had to be reasonably priced. Finally, It had to be easy to use — no frozen chubs that required power tools to cut into meal-sized portions. My quest led me to Steve’s Real Food. I bought a 5-lb bag of the Turducken formula, crossed my fingers and hoped for the best.

I was not disappointed. Mambo loved it. More importantly, I noticed that almost immediately, his poops improved in diameter, frequency and consistency, and he had an easier time passing them. Because of his special needs due to the fact that he had very little rectum remaining, I added a few things to his meals – a little baked sweet potato and extra ground flaxseed for additional fiber, and goat milk yogurt for probiotics. It was not long before Mambo had improved to the point that he could be adopted.

Three-and-a half months after his horrendous ordeal, a happy, healthy Mambo headed off into the sunset with his forever family, a bag full of his favorite toys, and a styrofoam cooler full of Steve’s Real Food.”

This is the true story of a special journey. I’ve had many cats but none like Emmie. She came into the world on a farm with her greatest loss, her mother. The three premature kittens were true survivors. Before they should have been able to try out their wobbly legs, they made it to a place in the field where their cries could be heard by a farmer. He waited to see if Momma cat would be back, but fearing their eminent death, he brought them to a veterinary clinic nearby and that’s where the story of the “Wendys” begins. My friend Wendy has a passion for rescuing. She is a veterinarian at that clinic where the farmer brought the three kittens. Since they needed 24 hour care, Wendy brought them home. They were full of everything life threatening, i.e., parasites, fleas, Rhinotraceitis, and being anemic from their premature birth, so survival didn’t look promising. Wendy and her daughter Nicole gave all they could to help the three kittens survive. Emmie was the littlest and the sickest. She weighed in at .04 of a pound at 2 weeks. They were a mess. All of the kittens had Rhinotraceitis (one of the respiratory diseases the distemper vaccine prevents). They contracted Rhinotraceitis (otherwise known as feline herpes) in their mother’s womb. Every morning Wendy told me she expected to come downstairs to find them dead. It wasn’t the first time some of the kittens she tried to rescue didn’t make it. Bathing was frequent. This is about where I came in.

I had lost my two cats within the previous 6 months and decided due to financial concerns, not to adopt another cat. Wendy was trying to get the kittens adopted but they were passing the respiratory illness back and forth. I offered to foster whichever one was most ready to be separated. Ironically it was Emmie. Who could have known the road ahead! Emmie arrived in my apartment on Labor Day of 2016. She was 2 months old and weighed 2.9 lbs. Let’s take a moment for a reality check. Who can take in a kitten like Emmie and then give her back! With fear and in trepidation I couldn’t let her go to a shelter. I had no clue what I was getting myself into but I knew there was a major learning curve ahead and I was not on the high end of it! Emmie was sneeze free for about 2 days but then the symptoms came back full blown. At the risk of offending readers, there is no way to describe rhinotraceitis at it’s worse. I learned what “snot flying” really meant and what “snot bombs” were. The bombs were sneezes that produced so much air born infectious excretion that Emmie’s head, face, eyes, and everything in close proximity was covered. “Snot flying” was just that, sneezes that managed to project to lengths beyond human comprehension. On top of this she had a cough that was not asthmatic, however, I couldn’t identify it’s cause. At a veterinary visit I learned cats do get post nasal drip coughs! Who knew???

After 5 rounds of antibiotics with no success, my veterinarian suggested essential oil diffuser therapy. I felt horrible. I would put her in the bathroom for one hour three times a day, which was difficult since I work in an office 45 minutes from my house. She showed some improvement but not enough to call her close to being cured. So we sought out a holistic veterinarian next and went the route of supplements and specific foods. She got better but not close to cured.

Emmie definitely has Siamese in her by the shape of her face and her over the top intelligence. When the light is shining just right on her, her undercoat is perfectly tiger stripped will all the markings. This little black bundle of energy and joy had me on an emotional rollercoaster. I would think, I’m not sure I can do this. I don’t know if I’m the one to keep her. Those closest to me said, “yes, I was the perfect one for her. She was given to me for a reason.” I thought of her possibilities and I couldn’t give her up. You see I have disabilities. I have found conventional treatment to fail me in many ways. I had to seek out other naturopathic interventions to survive along with very unconventional meal plans. I was told I would not live past 30 years old. I’m 61 and healed from what was to take my life and continuing my healing process. That made is so I knew Emmie could make it. She, thanks to Steve’s Real Food, has her health back. She is a certified assistance animal and totally cured. How did we get from diffusion therapy and supplements to cured? Steve’s Real Food!! I was at the end of options for Emmie. Her brother and sister had long shook this virus and were well. Emmie just couldn’t.

It was so frustrating to hear each veterinarian say, “she is so healthy I can’t figure out why she can’t kick this virus out of her system.” At two months old when I took her to my veterinarian, I begged for answers Emmy was only 2.9lbs, and covered with well…….you know what!!!! ” Im veterinarian assured me that Emmy was strong and would get better. She assured me we would work together as a team to get her well. About a year and a half from that day, with no more options, I sat with Emmie Grace as she looked at me with those deep yellow gold eyes, I cried and told her I wouldn’t give up on her.

I emailed to my naturopathic doctor in desperation. “What do I do, do you have any ideas?” The reply was what my heart longed to hear. It read, “I just adopted 13 kittens with rhinotraceitis virus and they are all well.” I sat in excitement, amazement, renewed hope, and the picture in my mind of 13…. well…. profusely expectorating kittens!!!!! I quickly responded and said tell me how! He said “a strict diet of Steve’s Real Food! ”
In no time I was on the telephone with Tera from Steve’s. We worked at transitioning Emmie from her high quality, grain free canned cat food to raw. Patience is the word I was told to kept in mind. Emmie Grace’s transformation was amazing!!! Sneezing began to lessen. Coughing became almost nonexistent. Within about 6-8 weeks I watched her body detoxify and transform before my eyes. Emmie and I both enjoyed her healing as the symptoms disappeared. Feeding raw has put me on a new learning curve. Emmie is beautiful and has demonstrated her miracle to a couple of my close friends who helped me out during the day with her. Everyone marvels at her beauty and health. Even in the darkest hours, at my very core I was so certain she had the capability to fight this disease. I knew deep inside it was about holding on and finding the right source of help for her. I learned a lot about faith, patience, acceptance, determination, loving and enjoying her in her illness, and staying optimistic while holding out for healing. Ironically Emmie helped me experience grace in a way I hadn’t understood. Hence her name…..Emmie Grace. To everyone I meet and have the opportunity to talk about feeding raw to their animal companions, I recommend Steve’s Real Food. I appreciate the quality of Steve’s Real Food, their total commitment, assistance, resources, and expertise they offered both Emmie and myself during the transition and healing process. Now instead of searching for answers for my sick kitten, whenever and wherever I have an opportunity, I share this deep passion…….If I knew years ago what I know now, every animal I ever had would have been eating raw!!!

Many thanks to everyone at Steve’s Real Food along with much heartfelt appreciation for walking this journey out with Emmie Grace and me.

Wendy Braun

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