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, wed 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.