Solid Gold Barking at the Moon Dog Food receives the Advisor’s top rating of 5 stars.
The Solid Gold Barking at the Moon product line includes one dry dog food, a recipe claimed to meet AAFCO nutrient profiles for adult maintenance.
Solid Gold Barking at the Moon
Dry Dog Food
Estimated Dry Matter Nutrient Content
Ingredients: Ocean fish meal, beef, potatoes, pea protein, canola oil (preserved with mixed tocopherols), dried eggs, peas, tomato pomace, natural flavor, potassium chloride, choline chloride, salmon oil (source of DHA), dried chicory root, taurine, parsley flakes, pumpkin meal, almond oil (preserved with mixed tocopherols), sesame oil (preserved by mixed tocopherols), Yucca schidigera extract, thyme, blueberries, cranberries, carrots, broccoli, vitamin A supplement, vitamin D3 supplement, vitamin E supplement, zinc sulfate, ferrous sulfate, niacin, calcium pantothenate, riboflavin, copper sulfate, pyridoxine hydrochloride (vitamin B6), thiamine mononitrate, manganese sulfate, zinc proteinate, manganese proteinate, copper proteinate, calcium iodate, cobalt carbonate, folic acid, sodium selenite, biotin, vitamin B12 supplement, rosemary extract
Fiber (estimated dry matter content) = 4.4%
Red items indicate controversial ingredients
|Estimated Nutrient Content|
|Dry Matter Basis||46%||22%||24%|
|Calorie Weighted Basis||37%||44%||20%|
The first ingredient in this dog food is fish meal. Because it is considered a meat concentrate, fish meal contains almost 300% more protein than fresh fish itself.
Fish meal is typically obtained from the “clean, dried, ground tissue of undecomposed whole fish and fish cuttings” of commercial fish operations.1
Unfortunately, this particular item is anonymous. Because various fish contain different types of fats, we would have preferred to have known the source species.
The second ingredient is beef. Although it’s a quality item, raw beef 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 third ingredient is 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 fourth ingredient is pea protein, what remains of a pea after removing the starchy part of the vegetable.
Even though it contains over 80% protein, this ingredient would be expected to have a lower biological value than meat.
And less costly plant-based products like this can notably boost the total protein reported on the label — a factor that must be considered when judging the meat content of this dog food.
The fifth ingredient is canola oil. Unfortunately, canola can be a controversial item. That’s because it can sometimes (but not always) be derived from genetically modified rapeseed.
Yet others cite the fact canola oil can be a significant source of essential omega-3 fatty acids.
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 sixth ingredient is dried egg, a dehydrated powder made from shell-free eggs. Eggs are easy to digest and have an exceptionally high biological value.
The seventh ingredient includes 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 meat content of this dog food.
The eighth ingredient is tomato pomace. Tomato pomace is a controversial ingredient, a by-product remaining after processing tomatoes into juice, soup and ketchup.
Many praise tomato pomace for its high fiber and nutrient content, while others scorn it as an inexpensive pet food filler.
Just the same, there’s probably not enough tomato pomace here to make much of a difference.
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 three notable exceptions…
First, 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.
Next, salmon 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, salmon oil should be considered a commendable addition.
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.
Solid Gold Barking at the Moon Dog Food
The Bottom Line
Judging by its ingredients alone, Solid Gold Barking at the Moon 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.
And a fat-to-protein ratio of about 49%.
Above-average protein. Above-average fat. And below-average carbs when compared to a typical dry dog food.
Even when you consider the protein-boosting effect of the pea protein and peas, this looks like the profile of a kibble containing a significant amount of meat.
Solid Gold Barking at the Moon is a grain-free meat-based kibble using a significant amount of ocean fish meal and beef as its main sources of animal protein, thus earning the brand 5 stars.
Please note certain recipes are sometimes given a higher or lower rating based upon our estimate of their total meat content and (when appropriate) their fat-to-protein ratios.
A Final Word
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Notes and Updates
09/07/2014 Last Update
- Association of American Feed Control Officials ↩