Blackwood Original Recipe (Dry)

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Rating: ★★★★☆

Blackwood Original Recipe dry dog food gets the Advisor’s above-average rating of 4 stars.

The Blackwood Original Recipe product line lists 3 dry dog foods… each claimed to meet AAFCO nutrient profiles for all life stages.

  • Blackwood 1000 Every Day
  • Blackwood 2000 Active Diet
  • Blackwood 5000 Alternative Diet

Blackwood Dog Food 2000 Active Diet was selected to represent the others in the line for this review.

Blackwood 2000 Active Diet

Dry Dog Food

Estimated Dry Matter Nutrient Content

Protein = 29% | Fat = 20% | Carbs = 43%

Ingredients: Chicken meal, ground corn, brown rice, chicken fat (preserved with mixed tocopherols), oat groats, dried plain beet pulp, menhaden fish meal, brewers dried yeast, whole ground flaxseed, natural flavor, wheat germ meal, egg product, lecithin, potassium chloride, salt, calcium carbonate, cheese meal, dl-methionine, dried whey, Lactobacillus acidophilus fermentation product dehydrated, l-lysine, ascorbic acid, garlic salt, Yucca schidigera extract, vitamin E supplement, mineral oil, niacin supplement, organic dried kelp, d-calcium pantothenate, riboflavin supplement, biotin, vitamin B12 supplement, thiamine mononitrate, vitamin A acetate, pyridoxine hydrochloride, citric acid, vitamin D3 supplement, folic acid, iron sulfate, zinc sulfate, zinc proteinate, iron proteinate, copper sulfate, zinc oxide, manganese sulfate, manganese proteinate, copper proteinate, manganous oxide, selenium, calcium iodate

Fiber (estimated dry matter content) = 3.3%

Red items when present indicate controversial ingredients

Estimated Nutrient Content
MethodProteinFatCarbs
Guaranteed Analysis26%18%NA
Dry Matter Basis29%20%43%
Calorie Weighted Basis24%40%36%

The first ingredient in this dog food is chicken meal. Chicken meal is considered a meat concentrate and contains nearly 300% more protein than fresh chicken.

The second ingredient includes corn. Corn is an inexpensive and controversial cereal grain of only modest nutritional value to a dog.

For this reason, we do not consider corn a preferred component in any dog food.

The third item is brown rice, a complex carbohydrate that (once cooked) can be fairly easy to digest. However, aside from its natural energy content, rice is of only modest nutritional value to a dog.

The fourth ingredient is chicken fat. Chicken fat is obtained from rendering chicken… a process similar to making soup in which the fat itself is skimmed from the surface of the liquid.

The fifth item is chicken fat. Chicken fat is obtained from rendering chicken, a process similar to making soup in which the fat itself is skimmed from the surface of the liquid.

Chicken fat is high in linoleic acid, an omega-6 fatty acid essential for life. Although it doesn’t sound very appetizing, chicken fat is actually a quality ingredient.

The fifth ingredient includes oat groats, a whole grain, minimally processed form of oats. With the exception of their caloric content and the fact they’re also gluten free, oat groats can be considered average in nutritional value.

The sixth ingredient lists beet pulp. Beet pulp is a controversial ingredient, a high fiber by-product of sugar beet processing.

Some denounce beet pulp as an inexpensive filler while others cite its outstanding intestinal health and blood sugar benefits.

We only call your attention here to the controversy and believe the inclusion of beet pulp in reasonable amounts in most dog foods is entirely acceptable.

The seventh ingredient is menhaden fish meal. Menhaden are small ocean fish related to herring. Plus they’re rich in protein and omega-3 fatty acids.

And like poultry meal, fish meal is considered another high-protein meat concentrate.

We are pleased to note that, unlike many fish meals, this particular item appears1 to be ethoxyquin-free.

The eighth ingredient is brewers yeast can be a controversial item. Although it’s a by-product of the beer making process, this ingredient is rich in minerals and other healthy nutrients.

Fans believe yeast repels fleas and supports the immune system.

Critics argue yeast ingredients can be linked to allergies. This may be true, but (like all allergies) only if your particular dog is allergic to the yeast itself.

In addition, a vocal minority insists yeast can increase the risk of developing the life-threatening condition known as bloat. However, this is a claim we’ve not been able to scientifically verify.

In any case, unless your dog is specifically allergic to it, yeast can still be considered a nutritious additive.

What’s more noteworthy here is that brewers yeast contains about 48% protein, a factor that must be considered when judging the actual meat content of this dog food.

The ninth item is flaxseed meal, one of the best plant-based sources of healthy omega-3 fatty acids. Flax meal is particularly rich in soluble fiber.

After the natural flavors, we find wheat germ meal. Wheat germ is a nutritious by-product of the wheat milling process and also rich in dietary fiber, B-vitamins and minerals.

However, since they each contain as much as 25% plant-based protein and depending upon the amount, flaxseed and wheat germ meals can boost the total protein reported on the label — a factor that must be considered when judging the actual meat content of this dog food.

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, garlic can be a controversial item. Although most experts favor the ingredient for its numerous health benefits, garlic (in rare cases) has been linked to Heinz body anemia in dogs.2

However, the limited professional literature we surveyed provided no definitive warnings regarding the use of garlic — especially when used in small amounts (as it likely is here).

Next, we note the inclusion of dried fermentation products in this recipe. Fermentation products are typically added to provide enzymes to aid the animal with digestion.

In addition, although we can’t be certain, mineral oil is apparently used in this recipe as a stool softener.

However, the inclusion of this additive can be controversial. That’s because the European Food Safety Authority has expressed some concern as to the long term health effects of using mineral oil in human food.3

Lastly, we note this food contains chelated mineralsminerals that have been chemically attached to protein. This makes them easier to absorb. Chelated minerals are usually found in better dog foods.

Blackwood Original Recipe Dog Food
The Bottom Line

Judging by its ingredients alone, Blackwood Original Recipe Dog Food appears to be an above-average kibble.

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.

The dashboard displays a dry matter protein reading of 29%, a fat level of 20% and estimated carbohydrates of about 43%.

As a group, the line features an average protein content of 27% and a mean fat level of 16%. Together, these figures suggest a carbohydrate content of 50% for the overall product line.

And a fat-to-protein ratio of about 58%.

Near-average protein. Near-average fat. And near-average carbs when compared to a typical dry dog food.

When you consider the protein-boosting effect of the flax and wheat germ meals, this looks like the profile of a kibble containing a moderate amount of meat.

Bottom line?

Blackwood Original Recipe Dog Food is a grain-based kibble using a moderate amount of chicken or fish meals as its main sources of animal protein, thus earning the brand 4 stars.

Highly recommended.

Those looking for a nice canned food from the same company may wish to visit our review of Blackwood canned dog food.

Special Alert

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

The descriptions and analyses expressed in this and every article on this website represent the views and opinions of the author.

Although it's our goal to ensure all the information on this website is correct, we cannot guarantee its completeness or its accuracy; nor can we commit to ensuring all the material is kept up-to-date on a daily basis.

Each review is offered in good faith and has been designed to help you make a more informed decision when buying dog food.

However, due to the biological uniqueness of every animal, none of our ratings are intended to suggest feeding a particular product will result in a specific dietary response or health benefit for your pet.

For a better understanding of how we analyze each product, please read our article, "The Problem with Dog Food Reviews".

Remember, no dog food can possibly be appropriate for every life stage, lifestyle or health condition. So, choose wisely. And when in doubt, consult a qualified veterinary professional for help.

In closing, we do not accept money, gifts or samples from pet food companies in exchange for special consideration in the preparation of our reviews or ratings.

To learn how we support the cost of operating this website, please visit our public Disclosure and Disclaimer page.

Have an opinion about this dog food? Or maybe the review itself? Please know we welcome your comments.

Notes and Updates

05/05/2010 Original review
10/29/2010 Review updated
11/02/2010 New recipes
09/06/2011 New recipes
03/11/2013 Review updated
03/11/2013 Last Update

  1. Blackwood Customer Service, 10/29/2010
  2. Yamato et al, Heinz Body hemolytic anemia with eccentrocytosis from ingestion of Chinese chive (Allium tuberosum) and garlic (Allium sativum) in a dog, Journal of the American Animal Hospital Association 41:68-73 (2005)
  3. EFSA News Story dated 6/12/2012
  • sarah

    I am trying to sort throughout the formulas offered by Blackwood. my question is why the four star rating on a recipe that includes corn?

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  • Dog Food Ninja

     Tanasha, the 5000 formula is corn, wheat, and soy free.  But what it makes up there it loses in it’s lower protein content.  23% protein is just not enough meat to merit a higher star rating.  It balances out… The 2000 is a bit higher in protein; just enough to overcome the negative of the corn.  But then the other two are lower in protein but with “better” binders, although I still disagree with any grain-based dog foods.  Rice isn’t a huge improvement over corn. 

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  • Kelvin

    what about blackwood 3000 review?

  • http://www.facebook.com/TEvans1978 Tanasha Evans

    I don’t think choosing the 2000 formula to “represent” the line was the best, because it is one of their cheaper and lower quality foods. But the 5000 is MUCH better, with no corn, wheat or soy. My min pin inhales it and she is in gorgeous shape.

  • Nir_g5

    Ok.thank you so much.

  • Shawna

    Nir ~~ In all honesty, I don’t know a lot about it.  But, I’ve read that the supplements are ineffective.  Here’s one article on it  http://www.usatoday.com/news/health/2008-09-29-joint-supplements_N.htm

    I do however think that natural sources of glucosamine (which can be found in supplements) are quite effective.  This site talks about eggshell membrane (a natural source) found to be effective.  http://www.rheumatologyme.com/siteroot/Media-Centre/LatestNews/news7/

    And for those reading this that like the science :)  http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2697588/

  • Nir_g5

    Yes .what to you think about my second question?
    Do you think glucosamine is essential for large breed dogs ?

  • Nir_g5

    Yes .what to you think about my second question?
    Do you think glucosamine is essential for large breed dogs ?

  • Nir_g5

    Yes .what to you think about my second question?
    Do you think glucosamine is essential for large breed dogs ?

  • Nir_g5

    Yes .what to you think about my second question?
    Do you think glucosamine is essential for large breed dogs ?

  • Shawna

    :) Welcome — Did my response on Mercola make sense?

  • Nir_g5

    It is me thanks a lot !!!

  • Shawna

    Nir_g5 ~~ Is it possible that this is the same Nir as from Mercola Healthy Pets?

    If so, this is Swinn.  And I’m sorry I haven’t gotten back to you yet!!  I began watching the video and got side tracked and then forgot…  Now that I’m thinking about it though — I’ll go watch it now..

    If this is not Nir from Mercola then please excuse me and disregard this entire post :)

    PS — if your dog has a healthy digestive tract you do not have to transition slowly…  Most of us on Mercola, myself included, do not transition from food to food.  We simply stop one and start another — just as Dr. Becker and Beth Taylor do.

  • Nir_g5

    Mike, 

    I will be glad if you can give your opinion on my second question.

    Thanks
     
    Nir

  • Nir_g5

    Hi,
    1.Is it possible that in this food we have no glucosamine at all ?
    I cannot see any mention of it .
    2.Do you think glucosamine is essential for large breed dogs ?

    Tnank !

    Nir

  • Jan_Mom2Cavs

    Melissa, sorry for butting into this post, but just wanted to let you know….there is one dog food I’ve found that says you should feed 1/2 the portion with your old dog food and then just go to full feed with theirs.  It’s Canine Caviar.  I used to feed it and it was true at that time.  It’s a good food, too.  Never fed Blackwood, though.

  • melissa

    Nir_g5-

    Doesn’t matter what Blackwood says : ) All foods should be slowly transitioned when switching to a new one. Typically 75 % old to 25% new for several days, then 50-50 for several etce etc until you are feeding 100 percent the new food. Some dogs require longer periods than others.

  • Nir_g5

    Hi,Can someone tell me what the blackwood company recommends about swtching proccess to do it slowly of or not to mixed with old one at all ?Somebody has an experiecne with that ?

  • Nir_g5

    *switching process
    *recommends

  • Nir_g5

    Hi,
    Can someone tell me what the blackwood company reccomanded about swtching procees to do it slowly of or not to mixed with old one at all ?
    Somebody has an experiecne with that ? 

  • Laurie

    Extremely rude customer service has been my experience with this company. 

  • Michelle

    ashley, here is the website for Blackwood,try the store locator, all you need is a zip code. It’s not at the top though. The store locator is under the pic of a beagle. http://blackwoodpetfood.com/

  • http://DogFoodAdvisor.com Mike Sagman

    Hi Ashley… Unfortunately, I do not keep track of pricing or availability of the more than 2,500 recipes represented here. I only review the products. You’ll need to contact the company for this information. Wish I could be more help.

  • ashley

    i have been trying to find out how to purchase blackwood dog food for my dog an how much it cost could u please help me out with this i would greatly appreciate it thanks in advance

  • http://DogFoodAdvisor.com Mike Sagman

    Hi Rosemary… Unfortunately, due to variations from batch to batch, we don’t track the kibble size of the more than 2,000 dog foods on our website. Wish I could be more help.

  • rosemary

    I’ve been feeding Blackwood 1000 to my two labs for quite awhile and I have no complaints; however, Blackwood has been purchased by a company in Ohio, and now I am having trouble getting the food, and when I can find it, the price is about $10 more than previously. I purchase 40# at a time (and with 2 labs, we go through a lot of food) and now need to find a similar food, since I am afraid, at some point it’s availability in my area (southeast US) will be limited…I also need chunks of a fair size…is there any way to find out the chunk size of other similarly rated foods in your list?

  • julie

    We switched to blackwood on may 16 . Went through one bag and half of another. The dogs seemed to like it but not their bodies. 220.00 later at vet they are allergic to it. Our show male has lost almost all his hair in one week. And the others are starting to lose theirs. Not good.

  • John

    Hi Mike, I’m from Malaysia Kuching, I have been feeding out my german shepherd Blackwood 2000, after fews week my german shepherd faces skin problem, vet said that 24kg per bag Blackwood 2000 is by-product… Really have this type product in the market? How to identify this type of product? And how is the Blackwood distributor in Malaysia?

  • Jeff

    i work at the factory that makes the Blackwood dry products and is pleased to see it getting a 4 star review……we also make many more products that gets a 3-4 star review

  • Rachael

    I have been feeding our cats Blackwood Adult Cat for over five years now. An owner of a feed supply recommended Blackwood to us when we lived in Nashville. When the other cat foods were tainted and killing kitties awhile ago, I never had to worry about Blackwood because it was made here in the States. My cats have been very healthy and energetic, with no signs of allergies. I highly recommend this brand. If we ever get a dog, I would feed the dog this brand as well. Besides, there’s free shipping which is another nice plus. I just wish I could find Blackwood in Phoenix, AZ so I don’t have to wait for the shipment.

  • http://animalatlanta.com ANIMAL ATLANTA

    I have owned my own pet store for 21 years and began selling Science Diet back in the old days, when Colgate Polmolive bought and ruined them. I switched to Iams/Eukanuba. They were ruined by Proctor and Gamble and Nutro took its place. M&M Mars candy company has doomed Nutro so I recently moved on agian. Now I sell and recommend Blackwoods ( especially 5000 – which all the Cherokee county K-9 cops use ), Evangers and Solid Gold. Of al of these, I feed my personal dogs Blackwoods 5000 and suppliment with the Evanger’s pure meat canned Salmon, Rabbit, Venison, Pheasant, Buffalo ( Bison ) Etc. I firmly believe this is the best I have ever seen and a good value for the price. The Blackwood 5000 has no corn, soy or grain and is designed for sensitive tummys like my 14 year old Golden Retriever. Visit or call us and we will be glad to elaborate further and help you as much as we can. Thanks – the Animal Atlanta team 770-591-0007

  • Geo

    We have been feeding both of our dogs blackwood 5000 i have seen a significant change in the dogs coat and energy. we choose the5000 because one of our dogs is allergic to corn and the other corn was harming his teeth so the 5000 was a good choice having catfish and potatoes hope it works for you

  • Tanya D’Armand

    Being a breeder of german shepherd dogs I fed Blackwood for many years, then trying to cut back on cost I switched.
    I am again looking at Blackwood as it seems to do the very best for my dogs. I am also looking at the cat food for my
    cats. Do like the convenience of delivery.

  • http://DogFoodAdvisor.com Mike Sagman

    Hi LCFiredogg… We’re due to take another look at Blackwood very soon. I’ll make sure we’ve selected a representative example of the product line before we update this review. Thanks for the suggestion.

  • LCFiredogg

    Hey Mike, Instead of 1000, can you analyze the Blackwood 2000, 5000 and 7000? I feed all three of these foods to my working dogs and have had fabulous results. I have tried some of the foods that you have rated 3, 4, and 5 star and have had terrible results. Thanks…

  • http://DogFoodAdvisor.com Mike Sagman

    Hi Poochie… Some of the foods you mention are rated 1 or 2 stars. It would be better to use our website to look for any of our 3, 4 or 5 star dog foods. Just be sure the package states the food is for “growth”, “puppies” or “all life stages”. Hope this helps.

  • poochie greene

    blackwood biljac diamond eubiuka nutro blue bufflo or what dog food is the best 4 four a large breed pit bull puppy far as putting on weight and built what do you recommend