Review of Eukanuba Canned Dog Food
Eukanuba canned dog food receives the Advisor’s top rating of 5 stars.
The Eukanuba product line includes 7 canned dog foods, each recipe includes its AAFCO nutrient guidelines when available….Growth (puppy), Maintenance (adult), All Life Stages, Supplemental or Unspecified.
Recipe and Label Analysis
Eukanuba Adult Beef and Vegetable Stew 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.
Eukanuba Adult Beef and Vegetable Stew
Canned Dog Food
Estimated Dry Matter Nutrient Content
Ingredients: Water, chicken, beef, beef liver, pork plasma, wheat flour, peas, carrots, tomato, cellulose, flaxseed, pork broth, natural flavors, guar gum, sodium tripolyphosphate, calcium carbonate, sunflower oil (preserved with mixed tocopherols), caramel color, xanthan gum, potassium chloride, magnesium oxide, vitamin E supplement, zinc oxide, ferrous sulfate, zinc proteinate, copper sulfate, thiamine mononitrate, biotin, manganese oxide, sodium selenite, niacin, d-calcium pantothenate, vitamin A supplement, riboflavin supplement, calcium iodate, vitamin B12 supplement, pyridoxine hydrochloride, vitamin D3 supplement, folic acid
Fiber (estimated dry matter content) = 8.3%
Red denotes controversial item
|Estimated Nutrient Content
|Dry Matter Basis
|Calorie Weighted Basis
The first ingredient in this dog food is water, which adds nothing but moisture to this food. Water is a routine finding in most canned dog foods.
The second ingredient is chicken. Chicken is considered “the clean combination of flesh and skin… derived from the parts or whole carcasses of chicken”.1
The third ingredient is beef. Beef is defined as “the clean flesh derived from slaughtered cattle” and includes skeletal muscle or the muscle tissues of the tongue, diaphragm, heart or esophagus.1
Both chicken and beef are naturally rich in all ten essential amino acids required by a dog to sustain life.
The next ingredient is beef liver, an organ meat sourced from a named animal and thus considered a beneficial component.
The fifth ingredient is pork plasma. Plasma is what remains of blood after the blood cells themselves have been removed. Plasma can be considered a nutritious addition.
The sixth ingredient is wheat flour, a highly-refined product of wheat milling. Like corn, wheat is an inexpensive and controversial cereal grain of only modest nutritional value to a dog.
For this reason, we do not consider wheat a preferred component in any dog food.
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 lists carrots. Carrots are rich in beta-carotene, minerals and dietary fiber.
The ninth ingredient is tomato, a nutrient rich vegetable consisting of about 72% carbohydrates.
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 Eukanuba product.
With 6 notable exceptions…
First, we find cellulose, an edible plant extract probably used here as a food stabilizer. Cellulose provides no nutritional value to a dog.
Next, flaxseed is one of the best plant-based sources of healthy omega-3 fatty acids. Flax meal is particularly 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, sunflower oil is nutritionally similar to safflower oil. Since these oils are high in omega-6 fatty acids and contain no omega-3’s, they’re considered less nutritious than canola or flaxseed oils.
Sunflower oil is notable for its resistance to heat damage during cooking.
There are several different types of sunflower oil, some better than others. Without knowing more, it’s impossible to judge the quality of this ingredient.
Next, caramel is a natural coloring agent made by caramelizing carbohydrates. It’s used by pet food manufacturers to impart a golden brown tint to the finished product.
However, the concentrated version of this ingredient commonly known as caramel coloring has been more recently considered controversial and found to cause cancer in laboratory animals.3
In any case, even though caramel is considered safe by the FDA, we’re always disappointed to find any added coloring in a pet food.
That’s because coloring is used to make the product more appealing to humans — not your dog. After all, do you really think your dog cares what color his food is?
In addition, 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, with the exception of zinc, 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.
Based on its ingredients alone, Eukanuba looks like an above-average canned dog food.
As a group, the brand features an average protein content of 41.2% and a mean fat level of 21%. Together, these figures suggest a carbohydrate content of 29.7% for the overall product line.
And a fat-to-protein ratio of about 51%.
Which means this Eukanuba product line contains…
Near-average protein. below-average fat. And above-average carbs when compared to other wet dog foods.
Even when you consider the protein-boosting effect of the peas and flaxseed, this looks like the profile of a canned product containing a significant amount of meat.
Our Rating of Eukanuba Canned Dog Food
Eukanuba is a grain-inclusive canned dog food using a significant amount of named meats and organs as its dominant source of animal protein, thus earning the brand 5 stars.
Eukanuba Dog Food Recall History
The following automated list (if present) includes all dog food recalls since 2009 related to Eukanuba.
You can view a complete list of all dog food recalls since 2009 here.
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More Eukanuba Brand Reviews
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