Product: The Honest Kitchen Pro Bloom
Quantity: 8 oz box (contains 16 half-ounce pouches*)
Price: $23.99 via THK site (approx. $1.50 per pack)*
Ingredients: Dehydrated goat’s milk, dried aspergillus oryzae fermentation product, dried candida rugosa fermentation product, dried trichoderma longibrachiatum fermentation product, dried pineapple fermentation product; dried lactobacillus casei fermentation product, dried lactobacillus acidophilus fermentation product, dried lactobacillus brevis fermentation product, dried bifidobacterium longum fermentation product, dried streptococcus thermophiles fermentation product
- Crude Protein, Min 35 %
- Crude Fat, Min 1 %
- Crude Fiber, Max 0.5 %
- Moisture, Max 7.9 %
Every now and then, I wander back to my fantasy goat farm and think about swapping my academic career “plans” for a couple dairy Alpines. I probably know as much about goats as I did about academia when I first started my degree(s)…
Which is to say, just about nothing.
I know I find goats enchanting, with their weird eyes and odd vocalizations that make me laugh until I cry when viewed in YouTube digest form… though, like academia, I’m sure some of these daily quirks wear thin in short order. I know that goats can be very affectionate towards humans, thanks in part to their long domestication history. Most importantly, they produce tasty cheese that costs/sells for oodles of foodiebucks, though I’m not necessarily a fan of goat milk.
The Bows, however, find goat’s milk to be quite a novelty, as I found out thanks to the Honest Kitchen, who sent us a couple sample packs of their new powdered goat milk supplement, Pro Bloom. The “pro” is for the additional probiotics and digestive enzymes loaded into the dehydrated mix, which you can check out in very full detail here.
In my cursory web searches on the use of goat’s milk for pets, I often stumbled across fairly broad claims of its efficacy. It’s praised for being highly digestible, even for those who are somewhat lactose intolerant (*raises hand*), it’s got more this and more that, it’s wholly nutritious unto itself, especially in its raw, natural form, etc. Well, I appreciate that THK is a little more restrained in their claims. This product is as much about the added probiotics as the milk itself, and they do supply plenty of information to assure you that the product will do what it is labeled to do — boost digestive gut flora that helps the body break down whatever needs to be consumed, but is not in and of itself a substitute for proper nutrition.
We know of at least one other commercially available goat milk product for pets, but THK is different in a couple ways. One is the aforementioned list of added cultures. Two is the fact that it is not raw, but pasteurized before dehydration. Third is its powdered form, which means it’s a lot easier to keep and offer as needed, and just as easy to rehydrate as their other products.
Each half-ounce pouch reconstitutes with a cup of warm water into a rich, fragrant mix. I sampled a few sips myself before offering some to the dogs (it’s described as “human-grade and made in the USA from pasture-raised, free-ranging goat’s milk in the Pacific Northwest[...], naturally free of pesticides, herbicides, growth hormones and antibiotics”). Bowdu was lapping up his share before the bowl even touched ground, while Bowpi hesitated, insisting that I take another sip from the prep bowl before she followed suit.
And then we entered Slurp City: Population, 2.
They licked everything clean, including the film rimming each bowl. As a powdered product, one can clearly see and taste the difference, but it’s not bad, for what it is.
The individuated packaging seemed excessive to me, but I can see its advantages. It is not priced for regular consumption (though apparently it’s great for nursing puppies and kittens), so most pets would probably be getting this on an occasional basis. Thus, the portioned pouches help keep the rest of the powder fresh and loose — a real concern with dry formulas in humid zones. You can also easily incorporate the powder into the rest of THK’s dehydrated mixes or other wet meals.
So if I ever end up with that goat farm, at least I know that the Bows will accept some milk in their fare. Until then, I suppose we’ll make do with it in this form.
* We only sampled two pouches and couldn’t test the product claims over a longer trial, so there’s not enough info to assign our typical letter grade. The most I can say is that Bows were happy with their samples and I am a fan of the company. I have ideas for how I would use it in the future, as I’m willing to try it again, though I’m not sure when I’d have occasion to spring for the cost of a full box. On a pass-fail scale, we can at least give this product a grade of SATISFACTORY (Pass).