We would like to start by thanking the lovely people at Wolf Tucker for getting on board with our project. Our aim is to help show people that raw feeding can be an easy and inexpensive alternative to kibble and to encourage people to make the change to raw. We would not be able to do this without your support, so thank you. To our readers, please remember this is just our opinion and our only aim is to promote raw feeding and help people choose the right supplier for them.With that covered, on to our second supplier: Wolf Tucker.
Wolf Tucker is a small company based in East Sussex, UK. It is owned by the lovely Mandy and her husband Brian along with their business partners Stewart and Sandrine Adamson who came on board after having one of their Rhodesian Ridgeback puppies. Wolf Tucker is run from their warehouse unit and they were kind enough to let us go and visit them. Mandy shows and breeds Rhodesian Ridgebacks which is why Wolf Tucker was born. She was unhappy with the kibble she was feeding her dogs and wanted to switch onto a raw diet. Wolf Tucker started in Mandy and Brian’s kitchen as a way to give their dogs the best raw diet they could, it slowly expanded through word of mouth recommendations and has gradually grown into successful small business. We sat with Mandy for at least an hour when we went to visit them, she was happy to talk all about their company (and their dogs and puppies of course) and she were very keen to answer all our questions, Brian also came to chat for a bit but he was busy down on the production line for most of our visit! Their whole operation from mincing to packaging takes place in their warehouse under their watchful eyes. From our visit we can honestly say that Wolf Tucker care deeply about the products they are making and the dogs they are feeding.
Conducting the review, for those of you that are regular readers, are Colin and Rhapsody. Colin is an 18 month old miniature poodle-border collie mix who weighs 10.1 kg, we have had him since October 2014 at just 8 weeks old. He has been raw fed since he was weaned off his mother’s milk and can be a little fussy about what he eats. Rhapsody is a miniature poodle weighing in at just 5.2 kg, we adopted her in January 2015 from Colin’s breeder. She has been raw fed since she was about a year old and I have never seen her refuse anything edible! Now you know a bit about Wolf Tucker and our testers, on with the review.
We received a selection of minces for Wolf Tucker. From their Sustain range; Beef, Chicken, Chicken & Tripe, Chicken & Beef, Primal Lamb and Primal Chicken. From their Puppy range; Beef, Beef & Tripe, Chicken and Chicken & Tripe. From their Naked range; Venison and Green Tripe.
Pup appeal: how much Colin and Rhapsody liked the food (10/10) – Colin and Rhapsody loved their mince from Wolf Tucker. They ate is so quickly that I’m considering getting slow feeding bowls. They especially loved their Naked range, we tried the green tripe and the wild venison and they went down a treat. On the days we fed the Naked range we did use bones from our local butcher to make up the bone percentage.
Poop rating: what it says on the tin, how good their poop is! (4/5) – overall there were very little poop issues, when feeding the complete minces they were nice and consistently firm but when I went DIY with the Naked minces Colin had a few slightly off days (just proving how difficult DIY raw can be!)
Packaging rating: how easy the food is to use/store and labelling (4/5) – All of the products from Wolf Tucker are vacuum packed in sausage shapes which is great. The sausages stack very nicely in our new dog food freezer and there is minimal wasted space. There was also no leaking when you defrost, we defrosted in a sealed bag in the fridge and then transferred the mince into a tub. All the mince sausages are well labelled, you know exactly what is in each one.
Price: value for money (8/10) – their Sustain minces range from £1.30 to £2.70 per 500g, this is consistently up to £1 cheaper per 500g (dependant on protein) than other complete minces from the major suppliers, with very few exceptions. Their Naked minces range from £1.80 to £2.65 per 500g, this is either in line with prices from other suppliers or slightly lower. Finally their Puppy minces range from £1.50 to £1.90 which is cheaper than the three major suppliers as well as more varied, most suppliers make one standard puppy mince. For even better value you can also order a 6 kg variety pack, Oscar’s (adult) is £19.95 and Elka’s (puppy) for £21.75. Although we did not sample their bones their prices are in line with other suppliers.
Quality: quality of the mince (sloppy vs chunky) (10/10) – there are not enough superlatives to describe the quality of the mince from Wolf Tucker. Impressed would be an understatement, we have never seen mince quite like theirs. All varieties have a great chunky consistency and do not have that over-blended feel that we have found that some minces in the past. The Naked green tripe was particularly fantastic, in human terms; extremely stinky!
Variety of products (3/5) – Wolf Tucker has a good variety of minces on offer and provide a great option for both experienced raw feeders and newbies by providing both complete and pure meat options. Of course, being a small operation, they cannot currently match the major suppliers when it comes to variety. Having said that, they are adding new proteins all the time; pheasant was new when we visited the factory, we took some home with us and it was great! We were particularly impressed by the range of their puppy minces as they provide a choice of proteins unlike most suppliers who just have one puppy option. Their bone selection is limited, this is to be expected from a small company, they just do not have the space to offer as many options as the major players.
Delivery and ordering: ease of ordering and quality of the delivery (4/5) – the website is easy to navigate, very clear information and some great news articles too. We had a slight admin issue when our box arrived (Mum ordered it to the wrong house) but even when our lovely dog walker went to put it in our freezer a day later it was all still frozen in its box. Postage starts at £6.50 (with a minimum weight of 6 kg) and increases by weight or you can collected from Wolf Tucker for free!
Our dogs loved their food from Wolf Tucker and we would recommend this supplier to both people that are new to raw feeding and to experienced raw feeders. Their mince is of an extremely high quality and the pups could not get enough. The high quality of the Naked range, especially the tripe, holds great appeal to DIY raw feeders as it can be difficult to find minces without any added extras. We have been seriously impressed with our mince from Wolf Tucker, we would recommend using their food alongside another supplier (or local abattoir) for bones.