Acana Regionals Dog Food Review (Dry)

Rating:

Acana Regionals Dog Food receives the Advisor’s top rating of 5 stars.

The Acana Regionals product line includes the 4 dry dog foods listed below.

Each recipe includes its related AAFCO nutrient profile when available on the product’s official webpage: Growth, Maintenance, All Life Stages, Supplemental or Unspecified.

Use the links below to check prices and package sizes for Acana dog food at an online retailer.

Acana Regionals Appalachian Ranch was selected to represent the other products in the line for this review.

Acana Regionals Appalachian Ranch

Dry Dog Food

Estimated Dry Matter Nutrient Content

Protein = 38% | Fat = 19% | Carbs = 35%

Ingredients: Deboned beef, deboned pork, deboned lamb, lamb meal, beef meal, pork meal, whole green peas, red lentils, pinto beans, beef liver, beef fat, catfish meal, chickpeas, green lentils, whole yellow peas, deboned bison, whole catfish, herring oil, lentil fiber, natural pork flavor, beef tripe, lamb tripe, lamb liver, pork liver, beef kidney, pork kidney, pork cartilage, dried kelp, whole pumpkin, whole butternut squash, kale, spinach, mustard greens, collard greens, turnip greens, carrots, apples, pears, freeze-dried beef liver, freeze-dried lamb liver, freeze-dried pork liver, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, zinc proteinate, mixed tocopherols (preservative), chicory root, turmeric, sarsaparilla root, althea root, rosehips, juniper berries, dried Lactobacillus acidophilus fermentation product, dried Bifidobacterium animalis fermentation product, dried Lactobacillus casei fermentation product

Fiber (estimated dry matter content) = 6.8%

Red denotes controversial item

Estimated Nutrient Content
MethodProteinFatCarbs
Guaranteed Analysis33%17%NA
Dry Matter Basis38%19%35%
Calorie Weighted Basis31%39%29%
Protein = 31% | Fat = 39% | Carbs = 29%

The first three ingredients in this dog food are beef, pork and lamb. Although they are quality items, raw meat contains up to 73% water. After cooking, most of that moisture is lost, reducing the meat content to just a fraction of its original weight.

After processing, these items would probably account for a smaller part of the total content of the finished product.

The next three ingredients are lamb meal, beef meal and pork meal. These are considered meat concentrates that contain nearly 300% more protein than fresh meat.

It’s important to note that the next 3 ingredients included in this recipe are each a type of legume:

  • Peas
  • Red lentils
  • Pinto beans

Although they’re a mixture of quality plant ingredients, there’s an important issue to consider here. And that’s the recipe design practice known as ingredient splitting.

If we were to combine all these individual items together and report them as one, that newer combination might occupy a higher position on the list.

In addition, legumes contain about 25% protein, a factor that must be considered when judging the meat content of this dog food.

The next ingredient is beef liver. This is an organ meat sourced from a named animal and thus considered a beneficial component. This item is inclusive of water.

Next, we find beef fat. Beef fat (or tallow) is most likely obtained from rendering, a process similar to making soup in which the fat itself is skimmed from the surface of the liquid.

Although it may not sound very appetizing, beef fat is actually a quality ingredient.

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 6 notable exceptions

First, we note the inclusion of chickpeas, green lentils and yellow peas, all of which contain about 25% protein, a factor that must be considered when judging the actual meat content of this dog food.

In addition, lentil fiber is a mixture of both soluble and insoluble dietary fiber derived from lentils. Aside from the usual benefits of fiber, this agricultural by-product provides no other nutritional value to a dog.

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.

We also find herring oil in this food. Herring 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, herring oil should be considered a commendable addition.

And lastly, this food contains one chelated mineral, a mineral that has been chemically attached to protein. This makes them easier to absorb. Chelated minerals are usually found in better dog foods.

Acana Regionals Dog Food Review

Based on its ingredients alone, Acana Regionals Dog Food looks like an above-average dry kibble.

The dashboard displays a dry matter protein reading of 38%, a fat level of 19% and estimated carbohydrates of about 35%.

As a group, the brand features an average protein content of 38% and a mean fat level of 19%. Together, these figures suggest a carbohydrate content of 35% for the overall product line.

And a fat-to-protein ratio of about 52%.

Which means this Acana product line contains…

Above-average protein. Above-average fat. And below-average carbs when compared to other dry dog foods.

Even when you consider the protein-boosting effect of the legumes, this looks like the profile of a kibble containing a significant amount of meat.

Bottom line?

Acana Regionals is a grain-free dry dog food using a significant amount of named meats and meat meals as its main source of animal protein, thus earning the brand 5 stars.

Enthusiastically recommended.

Acana Dog Food
Recall History

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

A Final Word

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Important FDA Alert

The FDA is investigating a potential link between diet and heart disease in dogs. Click here for details.

Notes and Updates

09/30/2019 Last Update