Purina Puppy Chow Brand Puppy Food Complete & Balanced for Growing Puppies

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  • Purina Puppy Chow Brand Puppy Food Complete & Balanced for Growing Puppies
  • Published on: February 28, 2015
  • Last modified: June 13, 2015
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Review Summary:

At first glance at the top of the ingredient list one could question: “Corn? Where is the good meat? ”. It’s not there, at best there are generic named meat sources, which opens up the question on what condition the animal was in and where it is from. Also, the top of the ingredient list is crowded with various corn and soy products and by-products. Most of these are there to boast the protein content by relatively low cost, but some do not offer a good amino acid profile, such as corn. This recipe is not comprised of a variety of good wholesome ingredients. Food coloring and flavoring that is not claimed to be natural raises concern the additives that have little or no nutritional value. However, one positive highlight is the relatively high dietary fiber content. Overall, this recipe is poor.


  • Relatively higher in dietary-fiber
  • Cons

  • Corn is the first ingredient and not a meat
  • Does not contain at least one good meat source in top 5 ingredients (ie Chicken, Beef, etc..)
  • Does not provide Calorie info
  • Generic animal type ingredient sources
  • Added “egg and chicken” flavoring is not described as natural. Could be synthetic and composition unknown
  • Contains unnecessary food coloring
  • May contain too much non-dietary fiber carbohydrates
  • Quick Nutritional Breakdown:

    Protein Fat Fiber Moisture Carbs
    27% (min) 12% (min) 5% (max) 12% (max) 36% (Est.)

    *Values by Guaranteed Analysis.
    **Estimated carbs do not include fiber.

    Detailed Nutritional Facts:

    Calories NA
    Vitamin A 10 000 IU/kg
    Vitamin E NA
    Magnesium NA
    Calcium 1.1
    Phosphorus NA
    Selenium NA
    Zinc NA
    Docosahexaenoic Acid (An Omega-3 fatty acid) NA
    Linoleic Acid (An Omega-6 fatty acid) 1.5%
    Omega-3-acid NA
    Omega-6 fatty acid NA

    Ingredients Analysis

    First 5 Ingredients:

    1. Whole grain corn
    2. corn gluten meal
    3. chicken by-product meal
    4. animal fat
    5. soybean meal

    Very disappointing to not see at least one good source of meat protein in the top five.

    Corn is source of nutrients and protein, but it is also contains relatively high amounts of carbohydrates and the protein amino acid profile is unbalanced. It is commonly found in dog food, since it is relatively cheap. Take caution some dogs may already be or will develop an allergy to corn.

    Corn gluten meal is an inexpensive source of protein, and does boast protein content when used. However, the amino acids it contains are not well balanced for a dog. Thus, it is an inferior choice to meat or other sources for protein. Look out for this protein substitute. There are some dogs maybe allergic to corn, which applies to this corn by-product.

    Chicken by-product meal is rendered parts from parts that are not considered fit for human consumption. They grind down these parts, which may include the carcasses and/or remains after the main meat is removed. It may contain bones, lungs, brains, underdeveloped eggs, intestine, etc… Also, it goes through an extensive heating and processing to ensure it is safe to eat. Some people consider this ingredient to be inferior quality to other meat sources and prefer to avoid it. Like the typical meat, it does offer needed protein with good amino acid profile.

    Animal fat can come from various sources, such as the state of the animal or the specific animal type. There is no enforcement or definition the source. As one example, it can come from healthy slaughtered animal; on the other hand it could also come from a sick and/or euthanized animal. One example of a better alternative is “Chicken Fat”.

    Soybean meal is the remains after grinding the soybean to extract the oil. It is a low cost source of protein with all essential amino acids for dogs, and it’s commonly found in animal feed

    Other Ingredients to be Aware of

    Egg and chicken flavor is described as “natural”. Therefore, it does not have to be from natural sources. Such an ingredient is not clearly defined on what it is composed of, even if its synthetic it is important to understand. It is best to avoid such flavoring additives.

    Brewers rice is milled & processed rice. This processing strips valuable nutrients out, leaving the residual grain fragment, resulting in a carbohydrate biased focused filler. Without much relative value, it is a poor choice of ingredient.

    Barley is a cereal grain that provides a good source of fiber and contains eight out of the ten essential amino acids for dogs. Do note, it is rich in carbohydrates.

    Animal digest is processed animal issue by applying heat, enzymes, and/or acids. The end product may contain protein, but it is not clear on what parts of the animal, condition of the animal, or what type of animal was used.  It doesn’t sound great and we advise to avoid this ingredient if possible.

    Dried yeast is a good source for proteins and vitamins. The proteins from yeast are complete and it offers good B-complex vitamins particular. However, a possible drawback is some dogs maybe allergic or will develop an allergy toward yeast. Thus, take caution and keep a careful eye on your dog.

    Food coloring is purely added for aesthetics. Despite being FDA approved, there is always risk they may do harm over time without much or any value in return. Food coloring is unnecessary and should be avoided.  Example of food coloring in the ingredients is blue1, “food coloring”, yellow 5, red 40, etc..

    Garlic oil is a debatable ingredient. You may know that garlic contains thiosulphate, which can cause hemolytic anemia, liver damage, and death for dogs. So why do they add garlic or garlic oil to dog food? It is because some debate the benefits of garlic are significant for dogs, and low dosages do pose any risk to their compromising their health.


    All Ingredients

    Whole grain corn, corn gluten meal, chicken by-product meal, animal fat preserved with mixed-tocopherols (form of Vitamin E), soybean meal, egg and chicken flavor, brewers rice, barley, animal digest, calcium phosphate, fish oil, calcium carbonate, dried yeast, salt, potassium chloride, choline chloride, L-Lysine monohydrochloride, zinc sulfate, Vitamin E supplement, Yellow 6, ferrous sulfate, DL-Methionine, Yellow 5, Red 40, manganese sulfate, niacin, Vitamin A supplement, Blue 2, copper sulfate, calcium pantothenate, garlic oil, pyridoxine hydrochloride, Vitamin B-12 supplement, thiamine mononitrate, Vitamin D-3 supplement, riboflavin supplement, calcium iodate, menadione sodium bisulfite complex (source of Vitamin K activity), folic acid, biotin, sodium selenite

    Manufacture and Location

    Manufactured by:  Nestlé Purina PetCare Company
    Location(s): USA


    Any known recalls for any dog food products from this manufacture, parent, or parent subsidiaries from 2013.

    Date Brand Reason
    8/30/2013 Purina One Beyond Salmonella

    *Recall information from FDA website.


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