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Canidae Grain-Free Pure Ancestral Dog Food earns the Advisor’s top rating of 5 stars.
The Canidae Grain-Free Pure Ancestral 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 to compare price and package sizes at an online retailer.
- Canidae Grain-Free Pure Ancestral Fish Formula [M]
- Canidae Grain-Free Pure Ancestral Avian Formula [M]
- Canidae Grain-Free Pure Ancestral Avian Puppy Formula (4.5 stars) [G]
- Canidae Grain-Free Pure Ancestral Red Meat Formula (4.5 stars) [M]
Canidae Grain-Free Pure Ancestral Avian Formula was selected to represent the other products in the line for this review.
Canidae Grain-Free Pure Ancestral Avian Formula
Dry Dog Food
Estimated Dry Matter Nutrient Content
Ingredients: Quail, chicken, guinea fowl meal, duck meal, turkey meal, lentils, peas, tapioca, turkey, duck, chicken meal, chicken fat, garbanzo beans, suncured alfalfa, freeze-dried pheasant, flaxseed, minerals (iron proteinate, zinc proteinate, copper proteinate, ferrous sulfate, zinc sulfate, copper sulfate, potassium iodide, manganese proteinate, manganous oxide, manganese sulfate, sodium selenite), vitamins (vitamin E supplement, thiamine mononitrate, ascorbic acid, vitamin A supplement, biotin, niacin, calcium pantothenate, pyridoxine hydrochloride, vitamin B12 supplement, riboflavin, vitamin D3 supplement, folic acid), choline chloride, mixed tocopherols (a preservative), squash, parsley, sage, dried Enterococcus faecium fermentation product, dried Lactobacillus acidophilus fermentation product, dried Lactobacillus casei fermentation product, dried Lactobacillus plantarum fermentation product, dried Trichoderma longibrachiatum fermentation extract, basil
Fiber (estimated dry matter content) = 5%
Red denotes controversial item
|Estimated Nutrient Content|
|Dry Matter Basis||38%||15%||39%|
|Calorie Weighted Basis||33%||32%||35%|
The first two ingredients are quail and chicken. Although they are quality items, raw poultry 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 next three ingredients include guinea fowl, duck and turkey meals. Poultry meals are considered a meat concentrates and contain nearly 300% more protein than fresh poultry.
The sixth ingredient lists lentils. Lentils are a quality source of carbohydrates. Plus (like all legumes) they’re rich in natural fiber.
The seventh ingredient includes peas. Peas are a quality source of carbohydrates. And like all legumes, they’re rich in natural fiber.
However, both lentils and peas contain about 25% protein, a factor that must be considered when judging the meat content of this dog food.
The eighth ingredient is tapioca, a gluten-free, starchy carbohydrate extract made from the root of the cassava plant.
The ninth ingredient is turkey, another quality, raw item inclusive of moisture.
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 5 notable exceptions…
First, we find dried alfalfa. Although alfalfa is high in protein (18%) and fiber, it’s uncommon to see it used in dog food. This hay-family ingredient is more commonly associated with horse feeds.
Next, this recipe includes garbanzo beans, also known as chickpeas. Like peas, beans and lentils, the chickpea is a nutritious member of the fiber-rich legume (pulse) family of vegetables.
Garbanzos contain about 22% protein, something which must be considered when evaluating the total protein reported in this food.
In addition, flaxseed is one of the best plant sources of healthy omega-3 fatty acids. Provided they’ve first been ground into a meal, flax seeds are also rich in soluble fiber but also contain about 19% protein.
Next, we note the inclusion of dried fermentation products in this recipe. Fermentation products are typically added to provide enzymes to aid the animal with digestion.
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.
Canidae Grain-Free Pure Ancestral Dog Food Review
Based on its ingredients alone, Canidae Grain-Free Pure Ancestral Dog Food looks like an above-average dry product.
As a group, the brand features an average protein content of 35% and a mean fat level of 15%. Together, these figures suggest a carbohydrate content of 42% for the overall product line.
And a fat-to-protein ratio of about 42%.
Which means this Canidae product line contains…
Above-average protein. Near-average fat. And below-average carbs when compared to a typical dry dog food.
Even when you consider the protein-boosting effect of the lentils, peas, garbanzo beans, alfalfa, and flaxseed, this looks like the profile of a dry dog food containing a significant amount of meat.
Canidae Grain-Free Pure Ancestral is a dry dog food using a significant amount of named meat meals as its main source of animal protein, thus earning the brand 5 stars.
More Top Picks
Canidae Dog Food Recall History
The following list (if present) includes all dog food recalls since 2009 directly related to Canidae. If there are no recalls listed in this section, we have not yet reported any events.
- Canidae Dog Food Recall (5/5/2012)
More Canidae Reviews
The following Canidae Dog Food reviews are also posted on this website:
- Canidae All Life Stages Dog Food Review (Canned)
- Canidae All Life Stages Dog Food Review (Dry)
- Canidae Dog Food Review (Dry)
- Canidae Grain Free Pure Dog Food Review (Canned)
- Canidae Grain Free Pure Dog Food Review (Dry)
- Canidae Under the Sun Grain Free Dog Food Review (Dry)
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
- “Last Update” field at the end of this review reflects the last time we attempted to visit this product’s website. The current review itself was last updated 12/28/2019 ↩
06/20/2021 Last Update