Eukanuba Premium Performance (Dry)

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Rating: ★★★½☆

Eukanuba Premium Performance dog food receives the Advisor’s mid-tier rating of 3.5 stars.

The Eukanuba Premium Performance product line includes two dry dog foods, one claimed to meet AAFCO nutrient profiles for all life stages and one recipe for adult maintenance.

The following is a list of recipes available at the time of this review.

  • Eukanuba Active Performance 28/18
  • Eukanuba Premium Performance 30/20

Eukanuba Premium Performance 30/20 was selected to represent both products in the line for this review.

Eukanuba Premium Performance 30/20

Dry Dog Food

Estimated Dry Matter Nutrient Content

Protein = 33% | Fat = 22% | Carbs = 37%

Ingredients: Chicken, chicken by-product meal (natural source of chondroitin sulfate and glucosamine), corn meal, brewers rice, ground whole grain sorghum, chicken fat (preserved with mixed tocopherols, a source of vitamin E), dried beet pulp, chicken flavor, fish meal, dried egg product, fish oil (preserved with mixed tocopherols, a source of vitamin E), brewers dried yeast, potassium chloride, fructooligosaccharides, salt, sodium hexametaphosphate, choline chloride, minerals (ferrous sulfate, zinc oxide, manganese sulfate, copper sulfate, manganous oxide, potassium iodide, cobalt carbonate), calcium carbonate, vitamins (ascorbic acid, vitamin A acetate, calcium pantothenate, biotin, thiamine mononitrate (source of vitamin B1), vitamin B12 supplement, niacin, riboflavin supplement (source of vitamin B2), inositol, pyridoxine hydrochloride (source of vitamin B6), vitamin D3 supplement, folic acid), dl-methionine, vitamin E supplement, l-carnitine, beta-carotene, rosemary extract

Fiber (estimated dry matter content) = 4.4%

Red items when present indicate controversial ingredients

Estimated Nutrient Content
MethodProteinFatCarbs
Guaranteed Analysis30%20%NA
Dry Matter Basis33%22%37%
Calorie Weighted Basis27%44%30%

The first ingredient in this dog food is chicken. Although it is a quality item, raw chicken contains about 80% water. After cooking, most of that moisture is lost, reducing the meat content to just a fraction of its original weight.

After processing, this item would probably account for a smaller part of the total content of the finished product.

The second ingredient includes chicken by-product meal, a dry rendered product of slaughterhouse waste. It’s made from what’s left of a slaughtered chicken after all the prime cuts have been removed.

In addition to organs (the nourishing part), this stuff can contain almost anything — feet, beaks, undeveloped eggs — anything except quality skeletal muscle (real meat).

On the brighter side, by-product meals are meat concentrates and contain nearly 300% more protein than fresh chicken.

In any case, although this item contains all the amino acids a dog needs, we consider chicken by-products an inexpensive, lower quality ingredient.

The third ingredient is cornmeal, a coarsely ground flour made from dried 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 fourth ingredient is brewers rice. Brewers rice is a cereal grain by-product consisting of the small fragments left over after milling whole rice. Aside from the caloric energy it contains, this item is of only modest nutritional value to a dog.

The fifth ingredient is sorghum. Sorghum (milo) is a starchy cereal grain with a nutrient profile similar to corn.

Since it is gluten-free and boasts a smoother blood sugar behavior than other grains, sorghum may be considered an acceptable non-meat ingredient.

The sixth 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.

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 seventh ingredient is 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.

After the chicken flavor, we find fish meal, another protein-rich meat concentrate.

Unfortunately, this particular item is anonymous. Because various fish contain different types of fats, we would have preferred to have known the source species.

What’s more, the controversial chemical ethoxyquin is frequently used as a preservative in fish meals.

But because it’s usually added to the raw fish before processing, the chemical does not have to be reported to consumers.

We find no public assurances from the company this product is ethoxyquin-free.

Without knowing more, we would expect to find at least a trace of ethoxyquin in this product.

The tenth ingredient is dried egg product, a dehydrated form of shell-free eggs. Quality can vary significantly. Lower grade egg product can even come from commercial hatcheries — from eggs that have failed to hatch.

In any case, eggs are easy to digest and have an exceptionally high biological value.

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 five notable exceptions

First, 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.

Next, fish oil is naturally rich in the prized EPA and DHA type of omega-3 fatty acids. These two high quality fats boast the highest bio-availability to dogs and humans.

Depending on its level of freshness and purity, fish oil should be considered a commendable addition.

This recipe also contains fructooligosaccharide, an alternative sweetener1 probably used here as a prebiotic. Prebiotics function to support the growth of healthy bacteria in the large intestine.

Next, we note the inclusion of sodium hexametaphosphate, a man-made industrial polymer with no known nutritive value.

HMP is used in making soap, detergents, water treatment, metal finishing and most likely here to decrease tartar build-up on the teeth.

Although some might disagree, we’re of the opinion that food is not the place for tartar control chemicals or any other non-nutritive substances.

And lastly, the minerals listed here do not appear to be chelated. And that can make them more difficult to absorb. Non-chelated minerals are usually associated with lower quality dog foods.

Eukanuba Premium Performance Dog Food
The Bottom Line

Judging by its ingredients alone, Eukanuba Premium Performance dog food looks like an average dry product.

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 33%, a fat level of 22% and estimated carbohydrates of about 37%.

As a group, the brand features an average protein content of 32% and a mean fat level of 21%. Together, these figures suggest a carbohydrate content of 39% for the overall product line.

And a fat-to-protein ratio of about 66%.

Above-average protein. Above-average fat. And below-average carbs when compared to a typical dry dog food.

Even considering the protein-boosting effect of the brewers dried yeast, this looks like the profile of a kibble containing an above average amount of meat.

Bottom line?

Eukanuba Premium Performance is a plant-based kibble using an above-average amount of chicken by-product meal as its main source of animal protein, thus earning the brand 3.5 stars.

Recommended.

Those looking for a wet product from the same company may want to check out our review of Eukanuba Canned Dog Food.

Please note certain recipes are sometimes given a higher or lower rating based upon our estimate of their total meat content.

A Final Word

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

We rely almost entirely on the integrity of the information posted by each company on its website. As such, the accuracy of every report is directly dependent upon the quality of that data.

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.

Other spellings: Eukenuba, Eucanuba

Notes and Updates

11/15/2009 Original review
06/08/2010 Review updated
11/07/2011 Review updated
05/14/2013 Review updated
05/14/2013 Last Update

  • Lisa Poslock

    Have only fed Eukanuba prem perf for 26+ yrs. would never change. Have had Golden Retrievers. For 2) yrs . My oldest golden was 19 yrs and 2 mos when he died naturally. Never lost a GR less than 15 yo and knock on wood, no cancer. My current GR’s are. 9,11,12,13 yo. All healthy

  • Thomas

    my dog has had this food for 5 years. He looks awesome, shiney coat, large muscles, bright eyes. I also have less waiste to clean up because he doesn’t nead to eat as much food.

  • Pattyvaughn

    If you base that opinion on whether or not they have had or are likely to have a recall then I’d agree with you. However, if you base that on thir best food’s ingredient list, then ehh, not so much. However, if I had to feed my pet one or the other, I’d probably choose the same way as you.

  • Gabriel

    this is hundred times better them any Diamond’s brands on market

  • miss

    w gmo corn as the second ingredient I would rate this food below 3 stars

  • Jonathan

    I understand that. Where I said “I wonder where they get off with their pricing structure”, that was more of just a jab. I know why it costs more. But from a nutritional standpoint alone, it shouldn’t.

  • Antonio

    Jonathan,

    Eukanuba’s pricing is like most larger companies, based on the number of employees that have to be paid, and their advertising. People are slowly learning to evaluate what’s inside the bag versus what’s drawn on the outside to make their decisions.

  • Jonathan

    It is pricey, Jimmie… it actually costs more than Blue Buffalo or Wellness per pound at most retailers. If, for what ever reason, it was all I could buy (versus grocery-store foods), then I would pay the price. But being that I have access to the 5-star Earthborn Primitive Natural for around the same price as Pure, it makes me wonder where Eukanuba gets off with their pricing structure. Also, the name “pure” cracks me up. Does that not imply, by logical extrapolation, that their other products are inherently “impure”? lol

  • jimmie

    Eukanuba Pure may b the best choice but very expensive!

  • http://DogFoodAdvisor.com Mike Sagman

    Hi Jonathan… Thanks for the new Eukanuba product and website link. It’s nice to have someone (like you) representing the pet food retailers side of the industry. And supplying helpful insider information.

    As far as the half stars go… a great idea! I’ll look into it immediately. Of course, there would be a few hurdles and challenges to overcome. I’ll speak with my tech person so see if we could do this. In any case, thanks for this valuable suggestion.

  • jonathan

    Their website has all the info on the new line… http://www.eukanuba.com/en-US/eukanuba-pure.jspx

    Without the brewers rice I would give it 4 stars. Which brings me to a question… can your software assign half stars? Roger Ebert uses half stars to great effect in his film reviews. Something like this food could be 3 1/2 stars. Then a food like nutro max could be 2 and 1/2 stars, like, mildly recommended. then NC could be 3, and ultra 3 and 1/2. see what I’m getting at? and while we are on it, Ol’ Roy could be assigned ZERO stars, meaning not recommended EVER. Half stars could sharpen your product reviews to a fine point.

  • http://DogFoodAdvisor.com Mike Sagman

    Hi Jonathan… I’ve added Eukanuba Pure to my To Do list. Let me know once you see it in your store (or better yet) if you find a web page for the product. Thanks for the tip.

  • Jonathan

    Eukanuba is re-releasing their new “pure” line. We should be getting it back in store next week. Looks like a 3-4 star food. 3 1/2 maybe. It still contains brewer’s rice. It claims that it is corn, wheat, soy, and by-product free.
    Funny that they would name a product “pure”. seems to me that would imply their other products are “impure”. anyways, here’s the ingredients and GA for the adult…

    Chicken, Chicken Meal, Brewers Rice, Ground Whole Grain Sorghum, Ground Whole Grain Barley, Chicken Fat (preserved with mixed Tocopherols, a source of Vitamin E), Dried Beet Pulp, Dried Egg Product, Potassium Chloride, Natural Flavor, Fish Oil (preserved with mixed Tocopherols, a source of Vitamin E), Salt, Vitamins (Vitamin E Supplement, Ascorbic Acid, Beta-Carotene, Vitamin A Acetate, Calcium Pantothenate, Biotin, Vitamin B12 Supplement, Thiamine Mononitrate (source of vitamin B1), Niacin, Riboflavin Supplement (source of vitamin B2), Inositol, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride (source of vitamin B6), Vitamin D3 Supplement, Folic Acid), Sodium Hexametaphosphate, Choline Chloride, Fructooligosaccharides, Minerals (Ferrous Sulfate, Zinc Oxide, Manganese Sulfate, Copper Sulfate, Manganous Oxide, Potassium Iodide, Cobalt Carbonate), Monosodium Phosphate, Rosemary Extract.

    Crude Protein minimum 25.0%
    Crude Fat minimum 16.0%
    Crude Fiber maximum 5.0%
    Moisture maximum 10.0%
    Vitamin E minimum 140 IU/kg
    Omega-6 Fatty Acids minimum 2.0%*
    Omega-3 Fatty Acids minimum 0.3%*

  • jose

    Might as well give them olroy LOL.

  • http://DogFoodAdvisor.com Mike Sagman

    Hi Victor… Not sure I understand your question. Some pet food companies (even here in the US) create slightly different recipes for products they sell in other countries. Hope this helps.

  • Victor garcia

    I like to know if this Dog food are made in same country, because in Costa Rica, i guess the Dog food that our dogs consume is made en other country, not in the E U A and i think is other quality please answer quikly
    thank you.