These are all natural, pieces of chicken that have been dried into strips. They are sold as Dog Treats. Now I don’t have a dog. But I have 2 cats. They love chicken. I thought I am going to get a pack of these “dog treats” and see if my cats like them. Did I say “see if they like them?” Who are we kidding? When I opened the package up, they could smell it instantly and went nuts, pawing at me to give it to them.

Relax, I don’t give my cats a whole strip, first I break one into smaller pieces, easy to do as they have score marks on them. I gave some to my cats and they go crazy…chewing, chewing, chewing….crunching them up till they are gone as they devour these treats. Who says, “these are just for dogs”!

One of my adopted cats came with some dental issues. I have been taking good care of his teeth and gums since I got him. A (holistic) Vet told me the act of chewing is the best thing for his teeth and gums. She suggested I give him raw organic chicken with tiny bones, and especially chicken necks as chewing up the chicken necks are really good for his teeth and gums, yes crunching up the little bones and all. So I buy chicken necks but also give these dried strips which is very good chewing exercise.

Summary: Great product. All natural. $4 a package. Whether you have a dog, or like me, cats, your pet will love these. If you give to your cat, just break up a piece into smaller pieces for them.

NOTE: I gave one of these treats to my neighbors dog, and she loved it of course. So I’m saying these are good treats whether you have a dog or a cat! Equal Opportunity!!!



Natural Cat Treats (Bench & Field)

Bench & Field – Holistic Natural Feline Treats


OK, so while I can’t really write a taste test review of these cat treats, I can say I buy these treats for my two cats regularly, and they go bonkers for them.

The photo above shows my “guest reviewer”, my Siamese cat, Aspen, taste testing the treats and I can only say they get his 100% seal of approval. I tried many times to get a good, clear shot of him eating one of these natural treats as I held one out to him but it was almost impossible, as Aspen kept tugging and pulling my hand holding the treat with his massive paws as soon as I took one out of the jar. So let’s just say these treats certainly pass the taste test.

These treats are not made or sold under TJ’s brand but are sold there under the original brand called “Bench & Field”  and are labeled as “HOLISTIC NATURAL FELINE TREATS with Added Vitamins and Minerals.”

They’re shaped like a little fish, and have fish listed as the first ingredient (anchovy and sardine) and a bunch of natural ingredients. Chewy sells them for $6 a jar. TJ’s sells them for $3! Go figure. Of course I buy them when I am at Trader Joe’s.

I’m pretty sure your cats will enjoy these. More info can be found at Bench and Field’s own site:

TJ’s Premium Pine Cat Litter

pinecatlitterI haven’t posted previously about any pet products at TJ’s. I mostly concentrated on things us humans eat, but let’s face it, Trader Joe’s sells nice stuff for your furry friends too, so they should get some reviews for Pet Stuff. So first pet review:

One pet thing I’ve started buying on a regular basis is TJ’s PREMIUM PINE CAT LITTER. If you’ve only used clay type litters, this type of litter is quite different from clay type litters. It’s made from All Natural 100% pure pine sawdust thats been compressed into little pellets about 1/2 ” long.

pine pelletsOf course the Pine Litter has a very nice natural pine scent that is extremely helpful for odor control. When it gets wet, it basically disintegrates into well, wet (pine) sawdust. Even the wet litter I find does not get a strong ammonia odor. Pine is a natural disinfectant and it keeps all odors barely noticeable, a major, major plus for this litter.

As a Pellet litter is a pretty big change from clay type litters, both you and your cats will need to get used to it. Instructions on the bag tell you to switch to the Pine Litter gradually over time, by putting a layer of this down and your normal litter on top of the pine litter until your cat accepts the pine litter on its own. I have tested this with now 3 cats and all cats accepted the change after a about a week. Of course every cat is different in their behavior and hygiene, so you will have to try this and see if your cat will get used to it. Hopefully they will, as this is a good alternative to clay litters, its cheaper, and seems to my nose at least to be EXTREMELY EFFECTIVE ON CUTTING DOWN ALL ODORS. Basically I rarely smell any bad odors at all, ever. Even the used wet litter has almost no odor, the pine neutralizes odors!

I like the fact that its made out of a recycled waste product, pine sawdust leftover from wood mills no doubt. So “Eco”. This TJ product is much cheaper as very similar products like Feline Pine, sold in pet stores. The bag is 3.5 lbs and says “one bag is a 4 week supply”. That’s about what it lasts for my one cat (Maya) if not a little more. Using the pine litter, I don’t have to buy (and lug!) the huge 25 lb. bags of clay litter I used to anymore. Major plus.

USAGE: Without getting too disgusting, my cleaning up method is basically as follows: I use two tools to clean up: A regular plastic litter scoop PLUS a large cheap plastic spoon I got from a dollar store. Now you have a scoop with holes and a spoon with no holes. I put the box on the toilet leaving a little space. I target the “solid waste” with the two tools and focus on getting the (dried) poop, while trying to toss out as little  pine pellets as possible with a little back and forth with the two tools. I dump the solids in the toilet.

Then I brush the clean pellets on top aside, and look for the slightly dark wet “sawdust” that the pellets turn into when wet as they dissolve. I use the spoon (no holes) and spoon out any that light wet sawdust. Then I give it a little shake and sprinkle on some clean Pine Litter. Done! This technique is a bit different from doing regular clay or clumping litter but this stuff you can flush down the toilet no problem I’ve found, unlike clumping litters as the wet sawdust is very light and flushes easily down my toilet. If you don’t want to do this, just bag up all the waste.

I have found that the Pine REALLY keeps smells to a minimum and lasts quite a long time without having to change the whole box. As the litter is bigger and feels different to a cat only trying this with your cat will let you find out if they will adapt to this product. If you are patient and do it gradually as the bag says over a week or two, they very well may adapt and accept this litter. Give it a shot.

Disposal: I confess when I clean daily I flush all the waste and its not a problem (I live in a apartment building in a big city) . If you live in the country it might even be able to be used in compost outside? The bag says it can be used as mulch after use.

Even if you have to use it with combined with clay litter forever, by putting a layer of pine pellets on the bottom then clay litter on top, the pine litter will still be effective in odor control. Of course your cat will mix everything up together but it still works this way too.

A 7 lb. bag costs $3.50. A better deal compared to Feline Pine, which sells for about 14 lbs for $10-12?

*TIP 1: For cleanup, get a cheap dollar store plastic spoon to use in conjunction with your regular kitty litter scooper, as the wet sawdust will just fall through that. Of course you try not to throw out unused pine pellets if possible…

TIP 2: While you are at the dollar store, also buy a cheap door mat to place under/in front of the litter box. It will help cut down on material migration / tracking. I dump the dust on it down the toilet doing my daily cleaning routine.

Have you tried this product?  Let me know what you think in the Comments section!


UPDATE: 2019 – I now have two other cats. Both got used to the Pine Litter quickly. Even with 2 cats, a bag seems to last about a month.

(this was Maya, who I had at the time of this writing but has since passed away, after 16 years of looking like a she was about 1 years old!)maya2