Sammy Snacks Dog Food (Dry)

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Rating: ★★★½☆

Sammy Snacks Dog Food receives the Advisor’s mid-tier rating of 3.5 stars.

The Sammy Snacks product line includes five dry dog foods.

Although each formulation appears to be designed for a specific life stage, we found no AAFCO nutritional profile recommendations for these dog foods on the product website. So, it’s impossible for us to report life stage targets for these recipes.

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

  • Sammy Snacks Duck and Potato Dog Food
  • Sammy Snacks Adult Lamb Dog Food (3 stars)
  • Sammy Snacks Puppy Lamb Dog Food (4 stars)
  • Sammy Snacks Adult Chicken Dog Food (4 stars)
  • Sammy Snacks Senior/Weight Mgmnt Dog Food(3 stars)

Sammy Snacks Duck and Potato Dog Food was selected to represent the other products in the line for this review.

Sammy Snacks Duck and Potato

Dry Dog Food

Estimated Dry Matter Nutrient Content

Protein = 27% | Fat = 17% | Carbs = 49%

Ingredients: Duck meal, potato, whole ground brown rice, ground oats, chicken fat (preserved with mixed tocopherols and ascorbyl palmitate), beet pulp, dried egg product, rice bran, whole ground flaxseed, potassium chloride, sun-cured kelp meal, sodium chloride, mono-dicalcium phosphate, natural flavor, lecithin, fish oil, dried carrots, dried cranberries, dried blueberries, chamomile, dandelion, peppermint, dried tomato, rosemary, turmeric, taurine, Yucca schidigera extract, chicory root, calcium ascorbate (source of vitamin C), vitamin A supplement, vitamin D3 supplement, vitamin E supplement, vitamin B12 supplement, riboflavin, dl-methionine, niacin, calcium pantothenate, choline chloride, folic acid, biotin, thiamine mononitrate, pyridoxine hydrochloride, sodium selenite, calcium iodate, cobalt amino acid chelate, ferrous sulfate, iron amino acid chelate, manganese sulfate, manganese amino acid chelate, zinc sulfate, zinc amino acid chelate, copper sulfate, copper amino acid chelate

Fiber (estimated dry matter content) = 3.9%

Red items when present indicate controversial ingredients

Estimated Nutrient Content
MethodProteinFatCarbs
Guaranteed Analysis24%15%NA
Dry Matter Basis27%17%49%
Calorie Weighted Basis23%35%42%

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

The second ingredient lists 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 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 ground oats. Oats are naturally rich in dietary fiber, B-vitamins and low in gluten.

The fifth ingredient lists 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 sixth item 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.

The seventh 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.

The eighth ingredient is rice bran, a healthy by-product of milling whole grain rice. The bran is the fiber-rich outer layer of the grain containing starch, protein, fat as well as vitamins and minerals.

The ninth ingredient is 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 four notable exceptions

First, 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.

Next, chicory root is rich in inulin, a starch-like compound made up of repeating units of carbohydrates and found in certain roots and tubers.

Not only is inulin a natural source of soluble dietary fiber, it’s also a prebiotic used to promote the growth of healthy bacteria in a dog’s digestive tract.

In addition, we find no mention of probiotics, friendly bacteria applied to the surface of the kibble after processing to help 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.

Sammy Snacks Dog Food
The Bottom Line

Judging by its ingredients alone, Sammy Snacks looks like an above-average dry 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.

The dashboard displays a dry matter protein reading of 27%, a fat level of 17% and estimated carbohydrates of about 49%.

As a group, the brand features an average protein content of 25% and a mean fat level of 15%. Together, these figures suggest a carbohydrate content of 59% for the overall product line.

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

Below-average protein. Below-average fat. And above-average carbs when compared to a typical dry dog food.

When you consider the protein-boosting effect of the alfalfa meal contained in some of the recipes, this looks like the profile of a kibble containing a moderate amount of meat.

Bottom line?

Sammy Snacks is a plant-based kibble using a moderate amount of duck, chicken or lamb meals as its main sources of animal protein, thus earning the brand 3.5 stars.

Recommended.

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, our rating system is not intended to suggest feeding a particular product will result in specific health benefits 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.

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Notes and Updates

11/06/2012 Original review
11/06/2012 Last Update

  • Hound Dog Mom

    Sammy Snacks has out a new line of grain-free foods. They look pretty good – all are white potato free and over 30% protein. There’s a salmon formula, a chicken formula and a lamb formula. The line is called “Ancestry.” It’s running $62.99 for 30 lbs.

  • LSkill

    Thanks for reviewing this dog food! I have been feeding it to my 8 yr old Labradoodle for over a year now. She really likes it and I believe the Duck is helping her with her allergies. I was hoping it was more of a 5 star food. Now I can decide whether or not to continue with this food. THANKS!!