Pinnacle canned dog food receives the Advisor’s mid-tier rating of 3.5 stars.
The Pinnacle product line includes three canned 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.
- Pinnacle Duck and Potato Recipe
- Pinnacle Chicken and Vegetable Recipe
- Pinnacle Trout and Sweet Potato Recipe
Pinnacle Trout and Sweet Potato Formula canned dog food was selected to represent the others in the line for this review.
Pinnacle Holistic Trout and Sweet Potato Formula
Canned Dog Food
Estimated Dry Matter Nutrient Content
Ingredients: Trout, fish broth, herring, oatmeal, oat bran, sweet potato, canola oil, quinoa seed, carrageenan, guar gum, flaxseed, minerals (iron amino acid chelate, zinc amino acid chelate, cobalt amino acid chelate, copper amino acid chelate, manganese amino acid chelate, sodium selenite, potassium iodide), potassium chloride, vitamins (vitamin E, A, B12, D3 supplements, thiamine mononitrate, biotin, riboflavin supplement), choline chloride, calcium carbonate, sage, rosemary, papain
Fiber (estimated dry matter content) = 11.5%
Red items when present indicate controversial ingredients
|Estimated Nutrient Content|
|Dry Matter Basis||33%||29%||31%|
|Calorie Weighted Basis||25%||53%||23%|
The first ingredient in this dog food is trout. Trout is a marine and freshwater fish naturally high in protein.
The second ingredient includes fish broth. Broths are nutritionally empty. Yet because they add moisture to a dog food they are a common finding in many canned products.
The third ingredient includes herring. Herring is a fatty marine fish naturally rich in protein as well as omega 3 fatty acids — essential oils needed by every dog to sustain life.
The fourth item includes oatmeal, a whole-grain product made from coarsely ground oats. Oatmeal is naturally rich in B-vitamins, dietary fiber and is also (unlike many other grains) gluten-free.
The fifth item is oat bran, a nutritious by-product obtained from milling whole grain oats. The bran is the fiber-rich outer layer of the grain containing starch, protein, vitamins and minerals.
The sixth 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 seventh item includes 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.1
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.
The eighth ingredient lists flaxseed, 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.
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 two notable exceptions…
First, carrageenan, a gelatin-like thickening agent extracted from seaweed. Although carrageenan has been used as a food additive for hundreds of years, there does appear to be some recent controversy regarding its long term biological safety.
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.
Pinnacle Canned Dog Food
The Bottom Line
Judging by its ingredients alone, Pinnacle looks to be an average canned 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 28%. Together, these figures suggest a carbohydrate content of 31% for the overall product line.
And a fat-to-protein ratio of about 84%.
Below-average protein. Above-average fat. And near-average carbs when compared to a typical canned dog food.
Free of any plant-based protein boosters, this looks like the profile of a wet dog food containing a moderate amount of meat.
However, with 53% of the total calories in this food coming from fat as compared to just 25% from protein, this product may not be appropriate for every dog.
Pinnacle Dog Food is a meat-based wet product using a moderate amount of poultry or trout as its main sources of animal protein, thus earning the brand 3.5 stars.
Those desiring a lower fat content for their pet’s diet may wish to look elsewhere for a another product.
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
02/17/2010 Original review
09/20/2010 Review updated
06/15/2012 Last Update