Hallmarks of Quality

rather than potato starch


Hallmarks of Quality

The following is our selection criteria – the things a canned dog food must have to appear on our “approved” foods list:

-A whole, named animal protein in one of the first two positions on the ingredients list. “Whole” means no by-products. “Named” means a specific animal species – chicken, beef, pork, lamb – as opposed to “meat” or “poultry.” Because we are looking for products with the highest possible inclusion of top-quality animal proteins, we’d choose a product with meat first on the label over one that listed water (or broth) first and meat second.

-Named fat sources.

-If vegetables, grains, or other carb sources are used, we prefer to see them whole, rather than by-products (potatoes, rather than potato starch, for example).


There are actually far more traits that automatically disqualify a canned food from our consideration. Quality canned dog foods should not contain:

-An unnamed animal protein or fat source, such as “meat,” “poultry,” or “animal fat.”

-Any meat or poultry by-products.

-Wheat gluten, which may be used as a cheap source of plant protein, a thickener, and/or a binder, holding together artificially formed “chunks” of ground meat.

-Sugar, molasses, or other sweetener.

-Artificial colors, flavors, or preservatives.



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