Annamaet Grain Free dog food receives the Advisor’s top rating of 5 stars.
The Annamaet Grain Free product line lists four dry dog foods, each claimed to meet AAFCO nutrient profiles for all life stages.
The following is a list of recipes available at the time of this review.
- Annamaet Grain Free Lean
- Annamaet Grain Free Salcha
- Annamaet Grain Free Manitok
- Annamaet Grain Free Aqualuk
Annamaet Grain Free Aqualuk cold water fish formula was selected to represent the others in the line for this review.
Annamaet Grain Free Aqualuk Formula
Dry Dog Food
Estimated Dry Matter Nutrient Content
Ingredients: Salmon meal, potato, catfish meal, field peas, tapioca, menhaden oil (preserved with natural mixed tocopherols (vitamin E)), herring meal, carrots, celery, beets, parsley, lettuce, watercress, spinach, canola oil, natural flavor, lecithin, calcium carbonate, salt, dl methionine, l-lysine, cranberry, ascorbic acid, choline chloride, Lactobacillus acidophilus fermentation product dehydrated, oligofructose, Yucca schidigera extract, kelp meal, vitamin E supplement, biotin, niacin supplement, d-calcium pantothenate, vitamin A acetate, riboflavin supplement, vitamin B12 supplement, thiamine mononitrate, pyridoxine hydrochloride, citric acid, vitamin D3 supplement, folic acid, potassium chloride, ferrous sulfate, zinc sulfate, zinc proteinate, iron proteinate, zinc oxide, copper sulfate, manganese sulfate, manganese proteinate, copper proteinate, manganous oxide, sodium selenite, calcium iodate
Fiber (estimated dry matter content) = 3.9%
Red items when present indicate controversial ingredients
|Estimated Nutrient Content|
|Dry Matter Basis||33%||18%||41%|
|Calorie Weighted Basis||28%||37%||35%|
The first ingredient in this dog food is salmon meal. Because it is considered a meat concentrate, fish meal contains almost 300% more protein than fresh fish itself.
Fish meal is typically obtained from the “clean, dried, ground tissue of undecomposed whole fish and fish cuttings” of commercial fish operations.1
The second ingredient is potato. Potatoes can be considered a gluten-free source of digestible carbohydrates. Yet with the exception of perhaps their caloric content, potatoes are of only modest nutritional value to a dog.
The third ingredient includes catfish meal, another protein-rich meat concentrate. Catfish are usually farm-raised in fresh water.
Like salmon meal, this item is also ethoxyquin-free.
The fourth ingredient lists field peas. Peas are a quality source of carbohydrates. Plus (like all legumes) they’re rich in natural fiber.
However, peas contain about 25% protein, a factor that must be considered when judging the actual meat content of this dog food.
The fifth ingredient is tapioca, a gluten-free, starchy carbohydrate extract made from the root of the cassava plant.
The sixth ingredient is menhaden oil. Menhaden are small ocean fish related to herring. Their oil is naturally rich in the prized EPA and DHA type of omega-3 fatty acids, two high quality fats boasting the highest bio-availability to both dogs and humans.
What’s more, in their mid-depth habitat, menhaden are not exposed to mercury contamination as is typical with deeper water species.
The seventh ingredient is herring meal, yet one more fish protein concentrate.
The eighth ingredient mentions carrots. Carrots are rich in beta-carotene, minerals and dietary fiber.
From here, the list goes on to include a number of other items.
But to be realistic, ingredients located this far down the list (other than nutritional supplements) are not likely to affect the overall rating of this product.
With four notable exceptions…
First, we note the inclusion of canola oil. Many applaud canola for its favorable omega-3 content while a vocal minority condemn it as an unhealthy fat.
Much of the objection regarding canola oil appears to be related to the use of genetically modified rapeseed as its raw material source.
Current thinking (ours included) finds the negative stories about canola oil more the stuff of urban legend than actual science.3
In any case, plant-based oils like canola are less biologically available to a dog than fish oil as a source of quality omega-3 fats.
Next, we note the use of dried fermentation products in this recipe. Fermentation products are typically added to provide enzymes to aid the animal with digestion.
Next, this recipe contains oligofructose, an alternative sweetener4 probably used here as a prebiotic. Prebiotics function to support the growth of healthy bacteria in the large intestine.
And lastly, this food also contains chelated minerals… minerals that have been chemically attached to protein. This makes them easier to absorb. Chelated minerals are usually found in better dog foods.
Annamaet Grain Free Dog Food
The Bottom Line
Judging by its ingredients alone, Annamaet Grain Free appears to be an above-average dog food.
But ingredient quality by itself cannot tell the whole story. We still need to estimate the product’s meat content before determining a final rating.
As a group, the brand features an average protein content of 33% and a mean fat level of 16%. Together, these figures suggest a carbohydrate content of 43% for the overall product line.
And a fat-to-protein ratio of about 58%.
Above-average protein. Near-average fat. And below-average carbs when compared to a typical dry dog food.
Even when you consider the protein-boosting effect of the peas, this looks like the profile of a kibble containing a notable amount of meat.
Although supplementary marketing information does not influence our ultimate ratings, we note the company claims these kibbles are unusually low in ash (compared to other grain free products).
Annamaet Grain Free is a potato-based kibble using a generous amount of named meat and fish meals as its main source of animal protein, thus earning the brand five stars.
The Grain Free Lean formula is notably low in fat making it an especially interesting weight control product.
Those looking for a standard grain-based kibble from the same company may wish to visit our review of Annamaet dog food.
Rice ingredients can sometimes contain arsenic. Until the US FDA establishes safe upper levels for arsenic content, pet owners may wish to limit the total amount of rice fed in a dog's daily diet.
A Final Word
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Notes and Updates
10/03/2010 Original review
06/27/2012 Last Update