Hi-Tek Naturals Grain Free dog food earns the Advisor’s top rating of 5 stars.
The Hi-Tek Naturals Grain Free product line includes three dry dog foods, each claimed to meet AAFCO nutrient profiles for adult maintenance.
The following is a list of recipes available at the time of this review.
- Hi-Tek Naturals Grain Free Alaskan Fish
- Hi-Tek Naturals Chicken Meal and Sweet Potato
- Hi-Tek Naturals Grain Free Lamb Meal and Sweet Potato
Hi-Tek Naturals Grain Free Chicken Meal and Sweet Potato was selected to represent the other products in the line for this review.
Hi-Tek Naturals Grain Free Chicken Meal and Sweet Potato
Dry Dog Food
Estimated Dry Matter Nutrient Content
Ingredients: Chicken meal, sweet potato, peas, pork meal, egg, chicken fat (preserved with natural mixed tocopherols), duck meal, salmon meal, ground sage, ground basil, flaxseed, sea salt, tomato, blueberry, raspberry, choline chloride, Yucca schidigera extract, dried Lactobacillus acidophilus fermentation product, dried Lactobacillus casei fermentation product, dried Bifido bacterium fermentation product, dried Enterococcus faecium fermentation product, vitamin E supplement, biotin, niacin supplement, d-calcium pantothenate, vitamin A acetate, vitamin B12 supplement, vitamin D3 supplement, pyridoxine hydrochloride (source of vitamin B6), riboflavin (source of vitamin B2), thiamine mononitrate (source of vitamin B5), citric acid, ferrous sulfate, zinc sulfate, zinc proteinate, iron proteinate, zinc oxide, copper sulfate, manganese proteinate, manganese oxide, selenium yeast, calcium iodate, folic acid
Fiber (estimated dry matter content) = 3.3%
Red items when present indicate controversial ingredients
|Estimated Nutrient Content|
|Dry Matter Basis||36%||18%||39%|
|Calorie Weighted Basis||30%||37%||33%|
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 lists sweet potato. Sweet potatoes are a gluten-free source of complex carbohydrates in a dog food. They are naturally rich in dietary fiber and beta carotene.
The third ingredient mentions peas. Peas are a quality source of carbohydrates. And 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 fourth ingredient includes pork meal, another protein-rich meat concentrate.
The fifth ingredient is whole eggs. Eggs are easy to digest and have an exceptionally high biological value.
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 lists duck meal, yet another high protein meat concentrate.
The eighth ingredient lists salmon meal. Salmon meal is typically obtained from the “clean, dried, ground tissue of undecomposed whole fish and fish cuttings” of commercial fish operations.1
We are pleased to note that, unlike many fish meals, this particular item appears2 to be ethoxyquin-free.
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, flaxseed is one of the best plant sources of healthy omega-3 fatty acids. Provided they’ve first been ground into a meal, flax seeds are also rich in soluble fiber.
Next, this recipe also contains selenium yeast. Unlike the more common inorganic form of selenium (sodium selenite), this natural yeast supplement is considered a safer anti-cancer alternative.
In addition, 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.
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.
Hi-Tek Naturals Grain Free Dog Food
The Bottom Line
Judging by its ingredients alone, Hi-Tek Naturals Grain Free dog food appears to be an above 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.
As a group, the brand features an average protein content of 36% and a mean fat level of 17%. Together, these figures suggest a carbohydrate content of 39% for the overall product line.
And a fat-to-protein ratio of about 46%.
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 still looks like the profile of a kibble containing a significant amount of meat.
Hi-Tek Naturals Grain Free is a plant-based dry dog food using a significant amount of chicken, lamb or salmon meals as its main sources of animal protein, thus earning the brand 5 stars.
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
02-29-2012 Original review
07/24/2012 Upgraded to 5 stars due to ethoxyquin-free
01/11/2013 Review updated
01/11/2013 Last Update