health benefits freeze dried snacks raw bar

We get it. 

You want to treat your pet, but you also want to treat them right — no gross, artificial  or mystery ingredients, just a natural raw snack to let your good boy or girl know they’re your #1. 

We want that goodness for our pets, too. That’s why we created the VE RAW BAR: a smorgasbord of unique freeze-dried snacks! From Turkey Necks to Pig Ears and everything in between, our VE RAW BAR features tantalizing single ingredient snacks your pet will be licking their lips over. Best of all, these natural sources of key nutrients aren’t just delicious — they also provide many health benefits for your puppy pal or kitty companion.

1. Best Rawhide Alternative: Bully Sticks

Rawhide is the processed hide of a cow or horse which has been chemically treated to delay decay and is often smoked or coated with meat flavoring. In recent years pet parents have become aware of the issues with rawhide, and concerned owners are looking for safe alternatives

Rawhide is very difficult to digest and can even swell up in a pet’s stomach. Your little terrier’s tummy just isn’t designed to break down bleached animal hide, which means if they swallow a big piece of material it can easily block their intestines — a serious and potentially life-threatening situation. 

With Vital Essentials Freeze-Dried Bully Sticks, you can put your mind at ease. Because all of our freeze-dried dog treats are biologically appropriate raw meat, they’re easy for your carnivore companion to digest. That means more chewy snacks for your pup and less stress for you. Our Freeze-Dried Beef Bully Sticks are soft enough to break down and pass through your pooch’s digestive system successfully, yet still tough enough for dogs to gnaw on. These popular dog snacks are one of the best alternatives to rawhide — no bones about it!

Although, if you are the pet parent of a particularly tenacious chewer and you find that they can crunch through Bully Sticks like candy, we also recommend our Freeze-Dried Pig Snouts and Pig Ears. These cartilaginous tissues are tougher and may be more appropriate for a strong-jawed chomper!

2. Best Source of Omega-3 Fatty Acids: Salmon Skins

You’re a savvy pet owner who makes the health of your kitty or pup a top priority, so you already know about the amazing health benefits of Omega-3 fatty acids: that they strengthen the immune system, reduce joint inflammation and maintain your dog’s healthy skin and coat. But did you know there’s evidence that Omega-3 fatty acids also impact behavior? That’s right! A diet rich in Omega-3s may have a calming effect on dogs with anxiety, and it’s even been known to boost your pup’s memory and trainability.

That’s why it’s especially important to include natural sources of Omega-3s in your pet’s diet. Omega-3s from natural sources may be easier for your pet’s body to absorb and use than those from artificial sources such as pills or powders. Our Freeze-Dried Salmon Skins are excellent sources of Omega-3s and are the perfect way to ensure your pet gets these essential nutrients, especially if the primary protein in your pet’s usual food is a non-fish source like chicken or beef. With just a minor addition to their diet, your pet can enjoy a very long list of incredible health benefits! 

Loved by both dogs and cats, these freeze-dried single ingredient snacks will be a hit with the whole household. Don’t be surprised if Whiskers scampers off with a big piece of Salmon Skin to enjoy the experience in peace. Pro-tip: Tear off a couple of strips of Salmon Skin and place a Freeze-Dried Minnow in between them to make a savory seafood sandwich!

3. Best For Heart Health: Duck Hearts 

Your little buddies have already left their pawprints on your heart. Naturally, you want to make sure their hearts are healthy and full of love, too.

Dogs and cats are both prone to many serious heart issues such as an enlarged heart or heart murmurs, and nutrient deficiencies can cause or exacerbate these challenges. That’s why it’s critical to make sure your pets have enough nutrients and essential amino acids in their diet, particularly iron and taurine. You may have heard that taurine is especially important for cats, as their bodies don’t produce any naturally — but that doesn’t mean dogs are fine without it! Dogs need taurine, too, to keep their hearts of gold beating strong.

There’s no better source for the vitamins and nutrients a heart needs than to get them straight from…well, a heart! Vital Essentials Freeze-Dried Duck Hearts are a fantastic source of taurine, iron, and other immune-boosting nutrients, as well as a scrumptious single ingredient snack your pets will love. They’re also a great way to add more vitamins to your pet’s diet.

Our in-house taste testers love to gobble these up, but if our Freeze-Dried Duck Hearts aren’t quite right for your dog or cat, that’s okay too! Our Freeze-Dried Chicken Hearts contain the same heart-healthy benefits and are the perfect size for cats or small dogs.

4. Best For Dental Health: Turkey Necks, Duck Necks and Chicken Necks

Dental problems are frighteningly common in pets of all ages. According to the American Veterinary Medical Association, 80% of dogs and 70% of cats show signs of oral disease as early as three years old. And the problem isn’t just aesthetic; dental issues like gingivitis can quickly escalate into something serious and result in painful, infected teeth that greatly impact the quality of your fur-baby’s life.

That’s why it’s imperative to care for your dog or cat’s teeth. In addition to preventing disease, looking after Fido’s fangs brings all kinds of other benefits, like a dazzling smile full of pearly whites and minty-clean breath.

There’s no substitute for regular vet visits and brushing your dog or cat’s little chompers, but giving your pet safe and healthy treats to munch on does support strong teeth and gums. Let your pup have a good gnaw on one of our Freeze-Dried Turkey Necks, Freeze-Dried Duck Necks or Freeze-Dried Chicken Necks to help scrape tartar and yuckiness off their teeth and promote good circulation for healthy pink gums. And remember, our freeze-dried pet treats aren’t just for dogs — many cats love to crunch down on a delicious raw poultry neck as well.

For a satisfying snack and outstanding oral health, treat your pal at the VE RAW BAR, available exclusively at your local independent pet shop

5. Best For Strong Joints: Pig Snouts, Pig Ears and Moo Sticks

Whether you have a young dog on the move or an older pup slowing down, making sure your best bud has strong joints will keep him feeling better, moving easier and fetching for longer. One way to boost joint health is to ensure your pal has plenty of hydroxyproline and collagen in his diet.

The amino acid hydroxyproline is one of the chief components in the protein collagen, and both are vital for overall joint health. Collagen supplements to a pet’s diet are extremely beneficial for building connective tissue and counteracting damage from arthritis or a joint-related injury. So when you’re choosing a tasty new treat from our VE RAW BAR, why not look for hydroxyproline-rich snacks to satisfy your pal’s raw meat craving and give them fantastic health benefits?

The best natural source of hydroxyproline and collagen is cartilaginous tissue, which is especially concentrated in the nose or ears of mammals. That’s what makes Vital Essentials Freeze-Dried Pig Snouts and Freeze-Dried Pig Ears such an excellent choice for a scrumptious snack that supports joint health! Our Freeze-Dried Moo Sticks (cow esophagus) are a great source of hydroxyproline, too. These nutritious raw pet treats all contain natural collagen that your pet’s body will instinctively know how to absorb — and we haven’t met a dog yet who didn’t love chowing down on a chewy pig snout. 

6. Most Unique VE RAW BAR Experience: Duck Heads

Real, whole, raw Duck Heads?? That’s qu-ackers! You truly won’t find these showstoppers anywhere else. They may look qu-eepy, but our award-nominated Freeze-Dried Duck Heads ensure that no part of the animal goes to waste. The tough duck bill provides strong resistance for your resident chewer, and the vitamins concentrated in these Duck Heads boost the overall health of your carnivorous companion. Plus, dogs (and many cats) go qu-azy for them! Try one and you’ll see that our Freeze-Dried Duck Heads really are all they’re qu-acked up to be.


Let’s be honest: your pet doesn’t know about all the amazing health benefits they’re gaining by eating VE RAW BAR freeze-dried treats. All they know is that our snacks are exciting and delicious — but you know that they’re good for them, too!

We encourage you to stop by your local Vital Essentials retailer so you can check out the VE RAW BAR in person. Our range of tasty freeze-dried pet treats will intrigue and delight your best furiend. You can either bring home a yummy surprise for your pet, or bring your buddy with you to let them pick out a treat for themselves!

To learn more about the VE RAW BAR and all our Vital Essentials raw pet food products, get in touch or visit your local retailer. We’d love to hear which satisfying snack is Fido’s favorite!