Acana Singles Dog Food receives the Advisor’s top rating of 5 stars.
The Acana Singles product line includes the 7 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.
- Acana Singles Duck and Pear [A]
- Acana Singles Pork and Squash [A]
- Acana Singles Lamb and Apple [A]
- Acana Singles Beef and Pumpkin [A]
- Acana Singles Turkey and Pumpkin [A]
- Acana Singles Duck and Pumpkin + Wholesome Grains [A]
- Acana Singles Lamb and Pumpkin + Wholesome Grains [A]
Acana Singles Duck and Pear was selected to represent the other products in the line for this review.
Acana Singles Duck and Pear
Dry Dog Food
Estimated Dry Matter Nutrient Content
Ingredients: Deboned duck, duck meal, duck liver, sweet potato, whole chickpeas, duck fat, whole lentils, lentil fiber, pollock oil, whole pears, natural duck flavor, duck cartilage, whole pumpkin, whole cranberries, salt, choline chloride, taurine, vitamin E supplement, dried kelp, zinc proteinate, mixed tocopherols (preservative), freeze-dried duck liver, niacin, thiamine mononitrate, riboflavin, calcium pantothenate, pyridoxine hydrochloride, folic acid, vitamin B12 supplement, copper proteinate, vitamin A acetate, vitamin D3 supplement, turmeric, citric acid (preservative), rosemary extract, dried Lactobacillus acidophilus fermentation product, dried Bifidobacterium animalis fermentation product, dried Lactobacillus casei fermentation product
Fiber (estimated dry matter content) = 5.7%
Red denotes controversial item
|Estimated Nutrient Content|
|Dry Matter Basis||35%||19%||38%|
|Calorie Weighted Basis||29%||39%||31%|
The first ingredient in this dog food is duck. Although it is a quality item, raw duck 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, this item would probably account for a smaller part of the total content of the finished product.
The second ingredient is duck meal. Duck meal is considered a meat concentrate and contains nearly 300% more protein than fresh duck.
The third ingredient is duck liver. This is an organ meat sourced from a named animal and thus considered a beneficial component.
The fourth ingredient is 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 fifth item lists chickpeas, also known as garbanzo beans. Like peas, bean and lentils, the chickpea is a nutritious member of the fiber-rich legume (or pulse) family of vegetables.
However, chickpeas contain about 22% protein, a factor that must be considered when judging the actual meat content of this dog food.
The next ingredient is duck fat. This item is obtained from rendering duck, a process similar to making soup in which the fat itself is skimmed from the surface of the liquid.
Duck fat is high in linoleic acid, an omega-6 fatty acid essential for life. Although it doesn’t sound very appetizing, duck fat is actually a quality ingredient.
The seventh ingredient includes lentils. Lentils are a quality source of carbohydrates. Plus (like all legumes) they’re rich in natural fiber.
However, lentils contain about 25% protein, a factor that will be considered when judging the actual meat content of this dog food.
The eighth ingredient is lentil fiber, 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.
The ninth ingredient is pollock oil. 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, pollock oil should be considered a commendable addition.
From here, the list goes on to include a number of other items.
But realistically, ingredients located this far down the list (other than nutritional supplements) are not likely to affect the overall rating of this Acana product.
With 4 notable exceptions…
First, we find taurine, an important amino acid associated with the healthy function of heart muscle. Although taurine is not typically considered essential in canines, some dogs have been shown to be deficient in this critical nutrient.
Since taurine deficiency appears to be more common in pets consuming grain-free diets, we view its presence in this recipe as a positive addition.
Next, we note the inclusion of dried fermentation products in this recipe. Fermentation products are typically added as probiotics to aid with digestion.
In addition, duck cartilage is a source of both glucosamine and chondroitin sulfate — natural substances believed to support joint health.
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.
Acana Singles Dog Food Review
Based on its ingredients alone, Acana Singles Dog Food looks like an above-average dry product.
As a group, the brand features an average protein content of 34% and a mean fat level of 19%. Together, these figures suggest a carbohydrate content of 39% for the overall product line.
And a fat-to-protein ratio of about 57%.
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 chickpeas and lentils, this looks like the profile of a kibble containing a significant amount of meat.
Acana Singles lists both with-grain and grain-free dry dog foods using a liberal amount of named meats and meals as its dominant source of animal protein, thus receiving 5 stars.
Acana Dog Food
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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
05/02/2020 Last Update