Diamond Naturals Grain Free Dog Food Review (Dry)

Diamond Naturals Grain Free Dog Food Review

Review of Diamond Naturals Grain Free Dry Dog Food

Rating:

Diamond Naturals Grain Free Dog Food receives the Advisor’s second-highest rating of 4 stars.

The Diamond Naturals Grain Free product line includes the 3 dry dog foods listed below.

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

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Product Rating AAFCO
Diamond Naturals Grain Free Pasture-Raised Beef and Sweet Potato 4 A
Diamond Naturals Grain Free Cage-Free Chicken and Sweet Potato 4 A
Diamond Naturals Grain Free Wild-Caught Whitefish and Sweet Potato 4 A

Recipe and Label Analysis

Diamond Naturals Grain Free Beef and Sweet Potato 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.

Diamond Naturals Grain Free Pasture-Raised Beef and Sweet Potato

Dry Dog Food

Estimated Dry Matter Nutrient Content

Protein = 27% | Fat = 16% | Carbs = 50%

Ingredients: Beef, lamb meal, sweet potatoes, peas, lentils, pea flour, canola oil (preserved with mixed tocopherols), tomato pomace, flaxseed, fish meal, natural flavor, salmon oil (source of DHA), salt, dl-methionine, choline chloride, taurine, dried chicory root, Yucca schidigera extract, tomatoes, blueberries, raspberries, dried Lactobacillus plantarum fermentation product, dried Bacillus subtilis fermentation product, dried Lactobacillus acidophilus fermentation product, dried Enterococcus faecium fermentation product, dried Bifidobacterium animalis fermentation product, vitamin E supplement, iron proteinate, zinc proteinate, copper proteinate, ferrous sulfate, zinc sulfate, manganese sulfate, copper sulfate, potassium iodide, thiamine mononitrate, manganese proteinate, ascorbic acid, vitamin A supplement, biotin, niacin, calcium pantothenate, sodium selenite, pyridoxine hydrochloride, vitamin B12 supplement, riboflavin, vitamin D3 supplement, folic acid

Fiber (estimated dry matter content) = 5.6%

Red denotes controversial item

Estimated Nutrient Content
MethodProteinFatCarbs
Guaranteed Analysis24%14%NA
Dry Matter Basis27%16%50%
Calorie Weighted Basis23%33%44%
Protein = 23% | Fat = 33% | Carbs = 44%

Ingredient Analysis

The first ingredient in this dog food is beef. Although it’s a quality item, raw beef 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 lamb meal. Lamb meal is considered a meat concentrate and contains nearly 300% more protein than fresh lamb.

The third ingredient is sweet potato. Sweet potatoes are a gluten-free source of complex carbohydrates in dog food. They are naturally rich in dietary fiber and beta carotene.

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

  • Peas
  • Lentils
  • Pea flour

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 would likely occupy a significantly higher position on the list.

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

The seventh ingredient is canola oil. Unfortunately, canola can be a controversial item. That’s because it can sometimes (but not always) be derived from genetically modified rapeseed.

Yet others cite the fact that canola oil can be a significant source of essential omega-3 fatty acids.

In any case, plant-based oils like canola are less biologically available to a dog than fish oil as a source of quality omega-3 fats.

The next ingredient is tomato pomace. Tomato pomace is a controversial ingredient, a by-product remaining after processing tomatoes into juice, soup and ketchup.

Many praise tomato pomace for its high fiber and nutrient content, while others scorn it as an inexpensive pet food filler.

Just the same, there’s probably not enough tomato pomace here to make much of a difference.

The ninth ingredient is flaxseed, 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.

From here, the list goes on to include a number of other ingredients.

But realistically, items located this far down the list (other than nutritional supplements) are not likely to affect the overall rating of this Diamond product.

With 6 notable exceptions

First, this food contains fish meal, another protein-rich meat concentrate.

Fish meal is typically obtained from the “clean, dried, ground tissue of undecomposed whole fish and fish cuttings” of commercial fish operations.1

Unfortunately, this particular item is anonymous. Because various fish contain different types of fats, we would have preferred to have known the source species.

Next, we note the inclusion of salmon oil. Salmon 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, salmon oil should be considered a commendable addition.

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, we note the use of 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.

We also note the presence of 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.

And lastly, this product includes 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.

Nutrient Analysis

Based on its ingredients alone, Diamond Naturals Grain Free Dog Food looks like an above-average dry product.

The dashboard displays a dry matter protein reading of 27%, a fat level of 16% and estimated carbohydrates of about 50%.

As a group, the brand features an average protein content of 27% and a mean fat level of 16%. Together, these figures suggest a carbohydrate content of 50% for the overall product line.

And a fat-to-protein ratio of about 58%.

Which means this Diamond product line contains…

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

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

Our Rating of Diamond Naturals Grain Free Dog Food

Diamond Naturals Grain Free is a dry dog food using a notable amount of named meat meals as its dominant source of animal protein, thus earning the brand 4 stars.

Highly recommended.

Has Diamond Naturals Grain Free Dog Food Been Recalled?

The following automated list (if present) includes all dog food recalls since 2009 related to Diamond.

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

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More Diamond Brand Reviews

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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.

References

  1. Association of American Feed Control Officials

08/29/2021 Last Update