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Chicken Soup for the Soul Dog Food Review (Dry)

Mike Sagman  Karan French

By

Mike Sagman
Mike Sagman

Mike Sagman

Founder

Dr Mike Sagman is the creator of the Dog Food Advisor. He founded the website in 2008, after his unquestioning trust in commercial dog food led to the tragic death of his dog Penny.

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Karan French
Karan French

Karan French

Senior Researcher

Karan is a senior researcher at the Dog Food Advisor, working closely with our in-house pet nutritionist, Laura Ward, to give pet parents all the information they need to find the best food for their dog.

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Updated: May 1, 2024

Verified by Laura Ward

Laura Ward

Laura Ward

Pet Nutritionist

Laura studied BSc (Hons) Animal Science with an accreditation in Nutrition at the University of Nottingham, before working for eight years in the pet food and nutrition industry.

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Laura Ward

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Rating:
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Which Chicken Soup for the Soul Recipes Get Our Best Ratings?

Chicken Soup for the Soul Dog Food receives the Advisor’s second-highest tier rating of 4.5 stars.

The Chicken Soup for the Soul product line includes the 11 dry dog foods listed below.

Each recipe includes its AAFCO nutrient profile when available… Growth (puppy), Maintenance (adult), All Life Stages, Supplemental or Unspecified.

Recipe and Label Analysis

Chicken Soup for the Soul Adult All Breeds Chicken, Turkey and Brown Rice was selected to represent the other products in the line for detailed recipe and nutrient analysis.

Label and nutrient data below are calculated using dry matter basis.


Chicken Soup for the Soul Adult All Breeds Chicken, Turkey and Brown Rice

Estimated Dry Matter Nutrient Content

27.8%

Protein

14.4%

Fat

49.8%

CarbsCarbohydrates

Chicken, turkey, chicken meal, turkey meal, cracked pearled barley, whole grain brown rice, peas, oatmeal, white rice, faba beans, chicken fat (preserved with mixed tocopherols), lentils, natural flavor, ground flaxseed, salmon, duck, calcium carbonate, salt, potassium chloride, choline chloride, vitamin E supplement, mixed tocopherols (preservative), citric acid (preservative), dried chicory root, dried kelp, carrots, apples, tomatoes, blueberries, spinach, cranberries, rosemary extract, parsley flakes, zinc proteinate, zinc oxide, ferrous sulfate, Yucca schidigera extract, manganous oxide, manganese proteinate, copper sulfate, vitamin A supplement, d-calcium pantothenate, sodium selenite, copper proteinate, niacin supplement, thiamine mononitrate, riboflavin supplement, calcium iodate, dried Lactobacillus acidophilus fermentation product, dried Lactobacillus casei fermentation product, dried Lactobacillus plantarum fermentation product, dried Enterococcus faecium fermentation product, pyridoxine hydrochloride, vitamin D3 supplement, cobalt carbonate, folic acid, biotin, vitamin B12 supplement


Fiber (estimated dry matter content) = 4.5%

Red denotes any controversial items

Estimated Nutrient Content
Method Protein Fat Carbs
Guaranteed Analysis 25% 13% NA
Dry Matter Basis 28% 14% 50%
Calorie Weighted Basis 25% 31% 44%

Ingredient Analysis

The first two ingredients in this dog food are chicken and turkey. 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, these items would probably account for a smaller part of the total content of the finished product.

Chicken and turkey are naturally rich in the ten essential amino acids required by a dog to sustain life.

The third ingredient is chicken meal. Chicken meal is considered a meat concentrate and contains nearly 300% more protein than fresh chicken.

The fourth item is turkey meal, another protein-rich meat concentrate.

The fifth ingredient is barley. Barley is a starchy carbohydrate supplying fiber and other healthy nutrients. However, aside from its energy content, this cereal grain is of only modest nutritional value to a dog.

The next ingredient is brown rice, a complex carbohydrate that (once cooked) can be fairly easy to digest. However, aside from its natural energy content, rice is of only modest nutritional value to a dog.

The seventh ingredient includes peas. Peas are a quality source of carbohydrates. And like all legumes, they’re rich in natural fiber.

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

The eighth ingredient is oatmeal, a whole-grain product made from coarsely ground oats. Oatmeal is naturally rich in B-vitamins, dietary fiber and can be (depending upon its level of purity) gluten-free.

The ninth ingredient is white rice, a less nutritious form of rice in which the grain’s healthier outer layer has been removed.

The next ingredient includes faba beans, legumes naturally high in dietary fiber and other healthy nutrients.

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

Next, we find chicken fat. This item is obtained from rendering chicken, a process similar to making soup in which the fat itself is skimmed from the surface of the liquid.

Chicken fat is high in linoleic acid, an omega-6 fatty acid essential for life. Although it doesn’t sound very appetizing, chicken 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 5 notable exceptions

First, we note the use of 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 must be considered when judging the actual meat content of this dog food.

Next, 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.

However, flaxseed contains about 19% protein, a factor that must be considered when judging the actual meat content of this dog food.

In addition, 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.

Next, this recipe contains sodium selenite, a controversial form of the mineral selenium. Sodium selenite appears to be nutritionally inferior to the more natural source of selenium found in selenium yeast.

And lastly, this food includes 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.

Nutrient Analysis

Based on its ingredients alone, Chicken Soup for the Soul looks like an above-average dry dog food.

The dashboard displays a dry matter protein reading of 28%, a fat level of 14% and estimated carbohydrates of about 50%.

As a group, the brand features an average protein content of 27% and a mean fat level of 14%. Together, these figures suggest a carbohydrate content of 50% for the overall product line.

And a fat-to-protein ratio of about 50%.

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

Even when you consider the protein-boosting effect of the peas, beans, lentils and flaxseed, this looks like the profile of a kibble containing a notable amount of meat.

Our Rating of Chicken Soup for the Soul Dog Food

Chicken Soup for the Soul is a grain-inclusive dry dog food that utilizes a notable amount of named meat meals as its dominant source of animal protein, thus earning the brand 4.5 stars.

Highly recommended.



Chicken Soup for the Soul Dog Food Recall History

The following automated list (if present) includes all dog food recalls related to Chicken Soup for the Soul through July.

You can view a complete list of all dog food recalls since 2009 here.

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More Chicken Soup for the Soul Reviews

The following Chicken Soup for the Soul dog food reviews are also posted on this website:

A Final Word

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