Dog Food Reviews

Nature’s Variety Instinct Raw Medallions

We put the Nature's Variety Instinct Raw Medallions into a tupperware container to thaw overnight
Written by Kevin Sando

Charlie about to review the Nature's Variety Instinct line of dog food.It’s been a while since we last updated you on the boys adventures in raw feeding, so we wanted to let everyone know how it is going!

The boys have been on Nature’s Variety’s Instinct diet for several months now and the results have been amazing.  Their coats look great, they are LOVING mealtime, but most importantly for us has been the change we have seen in Harley.Our handsome Golden Retriever Harley

Harley is a big boy – and at 8 years old he has definitely been slowing down a bit.  He is not as quick to jump up as he once was or to come when called.  Since feeding him the Instinct diet, his energy levels have definitely improved.  Most notably is that little puppy spark that seems to overtake him from time to time.  Whether its short bursts of sprinting at the park, or getting especially worked up during roughhousing, it makes us SO HAPPY to see.

Nature's Variety Instinct diet reviews

As you know, Nature’s Variety has been providing us with vouchers to try out the Instinct diet with the boys and share our thoughts with our readers. For years we were curious about raw feeding, we just weren’t sure where to start. When presented with the opportunity to test out the Instinct Diet, we jumped at the chance….and have been thrilled with the results!

While we definitely don’t consider ourselves to be experts in the field, we have been feeding raw for some time now and enjoy sharing the experience with our readers…

In previous posts we looked into the wide variety of Instinct options, frozen raw bitesInstinct Kibble with Raw Boost and even addressed common questions and tips for Traveling with Raw.

Well, this week we decided to try out the Instinct Raw Medallions

Charlie getting ready to review Nature's Variety Instinct Raw Medallions!

One of our favorite things about the Natures Variety Instinct line is that the various proteins and forms are designed to be interchangeable – the medallions are no exception.  In the wild, your dog would not be eating the same thing every day, so why should your modern dog not have some variety in their diet at home?  With so many high quality feeding options in the line, specifically formulated not to cause digestive upset, we say why not?!

Charlie about to try Nature's Variety Instinct Raw Medallions. Follow along as we sample all the forms and flavors of the Instincts Diet!

So what are the medallions like?

The Instinct Raw Medallions are sold in 3lb bags. Inside, the pieces are roughly 1 oz. each and measure 1.5″ in diameter by .5″ thick.  They are available in chicken, lamb, beef, duck, venison and rabbit.  For our taste test we opted for the Venison formula.

Looking into a bag of Nature's Variety Instinct Raw Medallions. They recommend thawing in the refrigerator 4-6 hours before serving.

Unlike the Raw Bites, which can be served straight out of the freezer, the medallions need to be thawed for 4-6 hours in the refrigerator before serving.

We put the Nature's Variety Instinct Raw Medallions into a tupperware container to thaw overnight

Weekdays can get a little frantic around our house so we found that it was most convenient to separate enough to get us through a day or two and place them in a plastic container to thaw. That way there are none less of those “darn, I forgot” moments.

Harley and Charlie excited to try Nature's Variety Instinct Raw Medallions

One thing that was a little trickier to figure out was how much to feed the boys.  When using the bites, we simply used a measuring cup to parse out the correct amount. While there is a feeding guide on the back of the bag for the Medallions, since we were mixing with kibble, we had to do a little bit of estimating. Not a big deal…we simply stuffed a couple of thawed medallions into a measuring cup and watched their behavior for a couple of days; observing how long it took them to eat their meals, whether they acted full afterward/hungry earlier in the day. For us, the magic number was three to take the place of ½ cup of food.  The boys of course always want more…

Reviewing Nature's Variety Instinct Diet - Kibble with Raw Boost and Raw Medallions

Serving up a bowl of Nature's Variety Instinct Kibble with Raw Boost and Raw Medallions

So how did they go over….

Charlie making sure Harley doesn't leave any of his Nature's Variety Instinct food behind!

MyDogLikes reviews the Nature's Variety Instinct diet - Instinct comes in a wide variety of forms and proteins that we have been reviewing one by one!

Harley from MyDogLikes testing out Nature's Variety Instinct dog food. Here he is eating their kibble with raw boost and medallions.

Well, the short answer is GREAT!

As you can see we chose to mix the medallions with the Instinct Kibble with Raw boost.  According to the feeding instructions on the bag, our boys would require about 15 medallions per meal. For small to medium sized dogs, this probably wouldnt be a problem and could make for a great stand-alone feeding option. Weighing in at 95/65lb respectively, feeding medallions alone would add up quickly(both in cost and freezer space)!

In our case it was a better option to use them to supplement  their kibble.  As you may expect, they gobble up the medallions right away before getting to the kibble.  They clearly love the taste and spent lots of extra time checking their bowls afterward to make sure there were no crumbs left behind.

On a related note

You may remember us saying that we would have liked to see more freeze dried pieces in the raw boost. Well, we talked (maybe some others too) and Nature’s Variety listened. Just look at all of the freeze dried boost in our latest bag!

Nature's Variety Instinct kibble with raw boost. Note the lighter colored pieces of freeze dried raw!

Charlie sniffing around our bin of Nature's Variety Kibble with Raw BoostThe boys can’t wait to dig in!

Thinking of giving NV a try? This is a great month to do so!

Nature's Variety is offering to donate a pound of food for every pound purchased at PetSaver Superstore during the month of November

Nature’s Variety is Sponsoring a Pound 4 Pound event during the month of November.  This means that for every pound of dry food purchased, Nature’s Variety will donate a pound to local pet rescues!  What a great opportunity to try out a top notch dog food while helping rescue animals at the same time! Check with your local healthy pet store to see if they are participating!

About the author

Kevin Sando

Kevin is a mechanical engineer with a degree from the Rochester Institute of Technology. He has move than a decade experience in new product design, prototyping and early stage manufacturing. Pairing this background with his love of dogs, gives him a unique perspective to evaluate the design and execution of new and interesting pet products.


  • Great to hear they have been doing well on the Instinct Raw and those medallions looks so yummy! With Miley almost 6 1/2 yrs old this may be a good choice for her. Thanks for the update!

    • The boys really do love the raw medallions!

      We have been so happy with the changes in Harley since moving to Instinct. He is 8-1/2 now and he definitely seems to have more energy and general playfulness again!