Here is a site you might find interesting if you have not already seen it:
I was informed of it by ConsumerWorld.org newsletter I received a couple times a week.
Thanks for posting this. I plan on spending some time checking the site out further. On first glance it looks quite interesting. I saw that some products/brands that people vilify here such as Purina were assigned 5 stars and others like Acana/Orijen that many posters to this site embrace were assigned the lowest rating of only 1 star.
I like that ratings are based in part from actually testing the diets for contaminants and that this isn’t a pet food ratings site per say. It looks like the same group of food scientists and medical professionals also tested baby food
That’s a very interesting and informative site. A bit ashamed to say that for all I am interested more in a company’s quality control than an ingredient list, that there could be heavy metal contamination in pet food never even occurred to me :/
Even more interesting is that several of the “high-end”, boutique type dog foods that I swore were the cause of major problems for my pack are also the lowest rated due to contaminants. Canidae, Wellness CORE, and the God-forsaken Timberwolf, which is possibly the worst commercial dog food in the known universe. It also, I think, puts the final nail in the proverbial coffin of a mystery that’s been bothering me for years. That is, why did my dogs get sick on one formula of a given brand, while thriving on another? (Science Diet, I am looking directly at you) And what could have been the reason why foods like Timberwolf would cause an immediate, drastic and euthanasia worthy behavioral issue, while blood test results were completely normal?
Heavy metal toxicity seems to fit that bill.
One thing I am curious about, though, is how they calculated nutritional value. I see that Kibbles & Bits, which is lower protein than Dog Chow, got rated higher for its nutrient content than the latter, whereas Orijen, which has dangerously high levels of minerals – I think the calcium:phosphorous alone is 3x the daily requirement – has a nutritional value comparable to that of Dog Chow. Odd.
Anyway, I sincerely thank you for posting this. The pack gets mostly home-cooked these days, but some recent health issues are forcing me to start supplementing with kibble, so it’s a very good resource to have when looking into feeds. On another note, I’m seriously considering getting a cat, so took a gander at the kitty list. Couldn’t believe Deli-Cat is still around! That brings back some fond memories of my grandmother’s cat, who lived to be about 22 yrs old on nothing but that food, and even then most likely died of extreme neglect rather than old age 🙁
Beneful a 5 star food? Sorry but no, never.
Definitely looks like a much more sound way of evaluating pet foods than by the ingredient list and GA alone given how little an ingredient list tells you about the food.
Aimee…keep us updated on your findings on the legitimacy of this site.
I don’t understand how this works, I clicked on the “Dry foods” there is 15 rows of dry dog kibbles, from 5 stars to 1 star….Holistic Select, Adult/Puppy Salmon, Anchovy & Sardines dog gets 3 stars, it’s in row 9, then when you get to row 14 the Holistic Select dog same formula gets 1 star… how can that be??
I did notice when the formulas used chicken & turkey they got 5 stars when the kibble had any type of fish it got 1 star… I seen a few brands that got 1 star that Patch didn’t do well on, when he first started eating them he was OK then by the 3rd week, he went down hill & was doing sloppy yellow poo’s & didn’t really want to eat the kibble no more, Earthborn, Ocean Fusion, Wellness Complete Whitefish & Sweet Potatoes , Wellness Simple Duck & Oats, Canidae Pure Land…..Patches very sensitive stomach/bowel must know when a kibble is CRAP….there was no TOTW formula’s, that’s the only kibble Patch hasn’t ever gone down hill on, no stomach/pancreas pain, no sloppy poos/diarrhea, no acid reflux, I’d love TOTW to be tested, cause why do dogs with IBD, EPI & IBS do really well on it, I’d love to no how many stars TOTW gets?….
This is why I like rotating kibbles, this way they are not on the same formula/brand long enough to get sick…
The ladies that use to post 3 yrs ago knew what they were talking about they always recommended rotating your dog foods…
Like I always say your better off feeding a Raw or Cooked diet, not a dry kibble….
Rodney Habib & others are proving dogs live longer when they eat raw/cook fresh whole food diets….People start adding fresh whole foods to your dogs diet……
i saw the rating system as well and really have to wonder how these foods got 5 stars. i noticed the same as you foods with fish were lower rated. my thoughts are that fish oil and fish have a lot of mercury even humans should eat no more then 3 cans of tuna per month. the foods with the most real meats or fish(no meals) and no fillers such as oats barley rice etc had the most metal contamination they say turkey is least contaminated the foods they said had 5 stars was eagle pack their first ingredients are chicken meal pork meal ground brown rice rice barley oatmeal so perhaps as i said the foods packed with real meat and fish may naturally contain more heavy metals then the foods that meat meals and alot grains? i have wonder if rendering doesnt reduce the some of the contaminants in meat meals? or maybe the cuts they use to render into meat meals , beaks feet feathers hooves etc dont contain as many heavy metals as the actual flesh of the animal?
in looking at canidae some foods had a 5 star rating. none of the foods with 5 stars had fish in them. some of the three stars did have fish meal . the treats were all one star with no fish meal and of the actual one star canidae dog foods most if not all had menhaden meal in them
all of the orijen foods contain fish perhaps that is why the one star rating?
and it appears all acana foods have fish in them as well
I like the point you brought up on the other site about what they consider excessive contaminants. Let us know if you find out anything more about their tests, please.
It would be nice if they would report exactly what contaiminants were found in each food. Should be no problem as they should be able to just upload the test results.
I emailed them to find out if they were even willing to disclose that info to a random person making an inquiry. Haven’t heard back yet and probably won’t over the weekend.
I need to understand this site more before using it as a tool to judge a pet food. I’m still confused as to why some foods that are rated very low in nutritional value, but high in the other two brackets are still getting 5 stars and not 3 etc.
That’s what I was wishing for too, the exact results for each food and what rating system they used for nutritional value. I am more interested in the contaminant part however, than the nutritional part. I have and am planning on feeding Eagle Pack so that was nice seeing it rated so high. Yet another one of their recipes wasn’t. Go figure? I’m sure you’ll report back if you hear from them.
Have a good day! 🐶🐸😺
- This reply was modified 6 days, 22 hours ago by crazy4cats.
I recently discovered that site too. I’m not sure how legitimate it is. I find it very fishy that they won’t release the data on WHAT was found in the pet food, they only give it a star rating leaving consumers unsure of what’s in the pet food. It seems really suspect that they would tell consumers that certain pet foods are bad but not tell us why. I tried to do some research on them but couldn’t find much, but I did come across this reddit AMA with them that’s worth a read. Everyone seemed to question their legitimacy, and they didn’t have any real answers to questions.
However, now it’s got me questioning if my pet food is full of contaminants. I recently switched to orijen which got a very low rating. I’m going to reach out to orijen to see if they have any response to this.
If anyone’s curious, this is the response I got from Champion pet foods regarding their response to the test:
Thank-you for contacting us. After numerous attempts to contact the Clean Label Project between April 10th and 13th, we had a conference call with the members of their team as well as Ellipse Analytics lab on April 18th.
Clean Label Project explained their objective to test pet food brands for difference contaminants, then compare and rate them based on their own star-rating system. Clean Label Project noted that they did not conduct any safety assessment of the results against the National Research Council (NRC) or FDA safety standards for companion animals. Rather, the results were compared to the EPA water quality levels which they believe the general public would be familiar with. We suggested that a comparison to the correct NRC or FDA standards would be more valuable to both pet lovers and the industry.
Although actual testing results and detailed methodologies were not provided, as a follow up to our conversation, we later received a quote from Ellipse Analytics where we could pay to receive detailed test results as well as a reference to their pet food certification process.
Our Champion guidelines for toxic heavy metals are based on the limits determined by the NRC for cats and dogs. Monitoring heavy metal levels is an important control point for us, and part of our HACCP program. We preform testing on our own foods and they are also tested for all heavy metals by a third-party accredited laboratory and these results range far below stipulated NRC levels.
Again, we affirm that our foods offer exceptional nutrition, food safety and peace of mind to pet lovers. We are committed to producing Biologically Appropriate dog and cat foods that are trusted by pet lovers everywhere and will continue to keep you updated on this situation as information becomes available.
I hope this information was helpful to you. If you have any questions please let me know.
Thanks for posting. I contacted Orijen too and got no where near the answer you got. I was simply told “they had very little information at this time and could contact me later when they knew more”. However, it has been a week since I contacted Clean Label as well asking for the test results on Orijen Six Fish and I’ve still received no email back. Not sure if it got lost in a sea of emails or was purposefully disregarded.
May try to contact them again with a different less invasive question to see how slow or fast I get a response.
I also emailed the clean label project, and I too haven’t gotten a response from them (and all I asked was if they tested the american or canadian version of Orijen).
I’m going to try asking them on their FB page as they seem to write back to questions much quicker there, but at this point I’m not putting too much faith in their credibility.
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