Doc’s Choice Dog Food Review (Dry)

Rating:

Doc’s Choice Dog Food receives the Advisor’s top rating of 5 stars.

The Doc’s Choice product line includes the 6 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 Amazon.

Doc’s Choice Adult Lamb and Rice was selected to represent the other products in the line for this review.

Doc's Choice Adult Lamb and Brown Rice

Dry Dog Food

Estimated Dry Matter Nutrient Content

Protein = 26% | Fat = 15% | Carbs = 52%

Ingredients: Lamb meal, oat meal, brown rice, barley, dried potatoes, chicken fat (naturally preserved with mixed tocopherols, a source of vitamin E), alfalfa meal, flaxseed, natural flavor, cranberries, blueberries, vitamins (vitamin A supplement, vitamin E supplement, vitamin D supplement, thiamine hydrochloride (source of vitamin B1), riboflavin supplement (source of vitamin B2), niacin, calcium pantothenate, pyridoxine hydrochloride (source of vitamin B6), folic acid, vitamin B12 supplement, biotin, ascorbic acid, choline chloride), minerals (cobalt carbonate, zinc oxide, ferrous carbonate, copper sulfate, manganous oxide, selenium yeast), probiotic (dried Lactobacillus acidophilus fermentation product, dried Lactobacillus casei fermentation product), prebiotic (inulin - dried chicory root), taurine, rosemary extract

Fiber (estimated dry matter content) = 5.6%

Red denotes controversial item

Estimated Nutrient Content
MethodProteinFatCarbs
Guaranteed Analysis23%13%NA
Dry Matter Basis26%15%52%
Calorie Weighted Basis23%31%46%
Protein = 23% | Fat = 31% | Carbs = 46%

The first ingredient in this dog food is lamb meal. Lamb meal is considered a meat concentrate and contains nearly 300% more protein than fresh lamb.

The second 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 third 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 next 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 fifth ingredient is dried potato, a dehydrated item usually made from the by-products of potato processing. In most cases, dried potato can contain about 10% dry matter protein which can have a slight affect on our estimate of the total meat content of this recipe.

The sixth ingredient is 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.

The next ingredient is alfalfa meal. Although alfalfa meal is high in plant protein (about 18%) and fiber (25%), this hay-family item is more commonly associated with horse feeds.

The eighth 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 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 4 notable exceptions

First, 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, the minerals listed here do not appear to be chelated. And that can make them more difficult to absorb. Chelated minerals are usually associated with higher quality dog foods.

In addition, 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.

And lastly, this recipe contains selenium yeast. Unlike the more common inorganic form of selenium (sodium selenite), this natural yeast supplement is considered a safer anti-cancer alternative.

Doc’s Choice Dog Food Review

Based on its ingredients alone, Doc’s Choice Dog Food looks like an above-average dry product.

The dashboard displays a dry matter protein reading of 26%, a fat level of 15% and estimated carbohydrates of about 52%.

As a group, the brand features an average protein content of 29% and a mean fat level of 15%. Together, these figures suggest a carbohydrate content of 48% for the overall product line.

And a fat-to-protein ratio of about 53%.

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 dried potato, alfalfa meal and flaxseed, this looks like the profile of a kibble containing a significant amount of meat.

Bottom line?

Doc’s Choice lists both grain-inclusive and grain-free dry dog foods that use a significant amount of named meat and by-product meals as their main source of animal protein, thus earning the brand 5 stars.

Enthusiastically recommended.

Doc’s Choice Dog Food
Recall History

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

You can view a complete list of all dog food recalls sorted by date. Or view the same list sorted alphabetically by brand.

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

07/04/2020 Last Update