Sport Dog Food Elite Series (Dry)

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Rating: ★★★★★

Sport Dog Food Elite Series receives the Advisor’s top rating of 5 stars.

The Sport Dog Food Elite Series product line includes four dry 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.

  • Sport Dog Food Elite Series Beef Formula
  • Sport Dog Food Elite Series Chicken Formula
  • Sport Dog Food Elite Series Venison Formula (4.5 stars)
  • Sport Dog Food Elite Series Whitefish Formula (4.5 stars)

Sport Dog Food Elite Series Chicken Formula was selected to represent the other products in the line for this review.

Sport Dog Food Elite Series Chicken Formula

Dry Dog Food

Estimated Dry Matter Nutrient Content

Protein = 33% | Fat = 16% | Carbs = 43%

Ingredients: Chicken meal, yams, freeze dried sweet potato, freeze dried chicken liver, freeze dried pumpkin, freeze dried red clover sprouts, freeze dried blueberries, bok choy, zucchini, squash, kale, freeze dried papaya, inulin, cranberries, parsley, probiotics (Lactobacillus acidophilus fermentation product dehydrated, Lactobacillus casei fermentation product dehydrated, Lactobacillus plantarum fermentation product dehydrated, Bifidobacterium thermophilum fermentation product dehydrated, Bifidobacterium longum fermentation product dehydrated, Enterococcus faecium fermentation product dehydrated, Bacillus subtillus fermentation product dehydrated), kelp, artichoke, salmon oil, herring oil, vitamins (dl-methionine, vitamin A supplement, vitamin D3 supplement, vitamin E supplement, vitamin B12 supplement, thiamine mononitrate, pyridoxine hydrochloride, riboflavin supplement, niacin supplement, folic acid, biotin), minerals (calcium pantothenate, selenium, zinc amino acid chelate, iron amino acid chelate, copper amino acid chelate, manganese amino acid chelate, cobalt amino acid chelate)

Fiber (estimated dry matter content) = 4.4%

Red items indicate controversial ingredients

Estimated Nutrient Content
MethodProteinFatCarbs
Guaranteed Analysis30%14%NA
Dry Matter Basis33%16%43%
Calorie Weighted Basis29%33%38%
Protein = 29% | Fat = 33% | Carbs = 38%

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 includes yams. In much of North America, the word yam can be used interchangeably with the term sweet potatoes.

So, assuming this item is indeed sweet potatoes, it can be considered a good source of complex carbohydrates. In addition, yams are naturally rich in fiber, beta carotene and other healthy nutrients.

The third ingredient is freeze dried 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 fourth ingredient is freeze dried chicken liver. This is an organ meat sourced from a named animal and thus considered a beneficial component.

The fifth ingredient is freeze dried pumpkin. Pumpkin is a nutritious addition high in complex carbohydrates, beta-carotene and dietary fiber.

The sixth ingredient is freeze-dried sprouts, a low-glycemic, plant-based carbohydrate item containing about 20% protein.

The seventh ingredient includes freeze-dried blueberries. Blueberries are a good source of vitamins, minerals and dietary 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 three notable exceptions

First, we note the inclusion of inulin, a starch-like compound made up of repeating units of carbohydrates and typically sourced from chicory root.

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, we find both salmon oil and herring oil. These oils are 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 their level of freshness and purity, salmon and herring oils should be considered commendable additions.

And lastly, this food 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.

Sport Dog Food Elite Series
The Bottom Line

Judging by its ingredients alone, Sport Dog Food Elite Series looks like 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.

The dashboard displays a dry matter protein reading of 33%, a fat level of 16% and estimated carbohydrates of about 43%.

As a group, the brand features an average protein content of 33% and a mean fat level of 16%. Together, these figures suggest a carbohydrate content of 44% for the overall product line.

And a fat-to-protein ratio of about 47%.

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

Free of any plant-based protein boosters, this looks like the profile of a kibble containing a notable amount of meat.

Bottom line?

Sport Dog Food Elite Series is a plant-based dry dog food using a notable amount of named meats as its main sources of animal protein, thus earning the brand 5 stars.

Enthusiastically recommended.

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.

Sport Dog Food
Recall History

The following list (if present) includes all dog food recalls since 2009 directly related to this product line. If there are no recalls listed in this section, we have not yet reported any events.

You can view a complete list of all dog food recalls sorted by date. Or view the same list sorted alphabetically by brand.

To learn why our ratings have nothing to do with a product’s recall history, please visit our Dog Food Recalls FAQ page.

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A Final Word

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

The Dog Food Advisor does not test dog food products.

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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.

However, we do receive a fee from Chewy.com for each purchase made as a direct result of a referral from our website. This fee is a fixed dollar amount and has nothing to do with the size of an order or the brand selected for purchase.

Have an opinion about this dog food? Or maybe the review itself? Please know we welcome your comments.

Notes and Updates

09/04/2016 Last Update

  • Hana Spitz

    This is a new company that I thought about trying until I realized they are copying other companies.. This food is exactly the same as Pioneer Naturals and some of their supplements are exactly like Natures Farmacy. Unless I am missing something I am not sure how they are getting away with this…

  • Leyna

    I recently purchased a bag of the Beef Formula. One of my little Dachshunds started showing no interest in eating after I added this to their diet. I have never had a problem with any of my dogs’ appetite. So this was a little disconcerting. It wasn’t that she was not hungry, but she would not touch this food. I decided to try a piece for myself. It was very dry, hard and tasted like sawdust. Now I know why she was avoiding this food. The ingredients looked so good and nutritious. Will not be purchasing this food for my crew again unfortunately..

  • Matt

    This food is not manufactured by Pioneer naturals

  • DeathRayBob

    Was thinking about trying this food but hugely disappointed that I do not see any natural preservatives in it as that is a big deal for me. There was also a review on Amazon saying the fish meal IS in fact preserved with ethoxyquin. My search continues.

  • Matt

    Just got the venison elite. Switching from Zignature turkey which was a good food for him. He has been eating it quite well, and seems to like the change. Stools little on the soft side, but surely after full transition they will firm up. Only been about 5 days.

  • Kwidjibo1

    Feeding the whitefish maintainence 20/10. Dog loves it and his coat is shiny. His dandruff is gone and so is his gas. The company’s CS is outstanding and they provide coupons and promotions. Food is manufactured by Pioneer Naturals.