BATON ROUGE, LA. — Shortly after declaring the end of its sustainable dog treat business, Marsh Dog announced June 15 the company will “live on in the hands of new ownership.” Chasing Our Tails, a pet food and treat manufacturer based in southern Minnesota, will acquire the company.

In an official announcement sent in May the company stated, “After much thought and deliberation, Marsh Dog has decided to close its doors. We invested significant time, effort, and resources into a national expansion in 2020, but, unfortunately, COVID frustrated those plans.”

Marsh Dog was founded 10 years ago in Baton Rouge in response to an invasive species destroying Louisiana wetlands. According to Marsh Dog, roughly 400,000 of the mammals need to be removed from the area “to prevent coastal erosion.” Three local siblings saw an opportunity to create nutritious dog treats from nutria meat while conserving the surrounding environment, and Marsh Dog was born.

Nutria meat, called ragondin, is a lean protein comparable to rabbit that is high in protein and low in fat and cholesterol, according to a program pushed by the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) for human consumption of the invasive species.

“We believe strongly in using the healthy, nutritious, and eco-sustainable protein of nutria, rather than seeing it wasted,” said Hansel Harlan, co-founder and president of Marsh Dog. “Dog owners agreed and a grassroots movement began. Our family is thrilled to place Marsh Dog in the capable hands of Chasing Our Tails owner, Stephen Trachtenberg, whom we know will continue the work we began, converting dogs into Canine Conservationists."

Chasing Our Tails specializes in the production of premium single- and limited-ingredient pet treat and chew products. It was created in 2009 and currently operates more than 100,000 square feet of production space.

“We are excited to welcome Marsh Dog to our family of brands,” Trachtenberg said. “We look forward to continuing the legacy of the Harlan family’s work while expanding the product line to include other US invasive species. Our first line addition will be Asian Carp which is an invasive species in Minnesota and several US waterways. We firmly believe that every canine can help in the conservation effort and that Marsh Dog will be an integral part of a solution to invasive species. In doing so, we can change the face of novel protein treat options.”

Chasing Our Tails plans to relaunch the wild nutria dog treat brand later this month, with line extensions expected in the future.

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