FirstMate Limited Ingredient Dog Food Review (Canned)

Rating:

FirstMate Limited Ingredient canned dog food receives the Advisor’s top rating of 5 stars.

The FirstMate Limited Ingredient product line includes the 4 canned 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 check prices and read reviews from actual buyers at an online retailer.

FirstMate Wild Tuna Formula was selected to represent the other products in the line for this review.

FirstMate Wild Tuna Formula

Canned Dog Food

Estimated Dry Matter Nutrient Content

Protein = 50% | Fat = 23% | Carbs = 19%

Ingredients: Deboned tuna, water sufficient for processing, potato, minerals (salt, calcium carbonate, monodicalcium phosphate, choline chloride, potassium chloride, zinc proteinate, iron proteinate, copper proteinate, manganese proteinate, calcium iodate), vitamins (vitamin E supplement, niacin, vitamin A supplement, thiamine mononitrate, riboflavin, biotin, vitamin B12 supplement, folic acid, vitamin D3 supplement, d-calcium pantothenate), taurine, kale

Fiber (estimated dry matter content) = 2.3%

Red denotes controversial item

Estimated Nutrient Content
MethodProteinFatCarbs
Guaranteed Analysis11%5%NA
Dry Matter Basis50%23%19%
Calorie Weighted Basis40%44%16%
Protein = 40% | Fat = 44% | Carbs = 16%

The first ingredient in this dog food is tuna. Tuna is an oily marine fish not only high in protein but also omega 3 fatty acids, essential oils needed by every dog to sustain life.

This item is typically sourced from clean, undecomposed whole fish and fish cuttings of commercial fish operations.1

The second ingredient is water, which adds nothing but moisture to this food. Water is a routine finding in most canned dog foods.

The third ingredient is potato. Potatoes can be considered a gluten-free source of digestible carbohydrates. Yet with the exception of perhaps their caloric content, potatoes are of only modest nutritional value to a dog.

The next ingredient is salt (also known as sodium chloride). Salt is a common additive in many dog foods. That’s because sodium is a necessary mineral for all animals — including humans.

However, since the actual amount of salt added to this recipe isn’t disclosed on the list of ingredients, it’s impossible to judge the nutritional value of this item.

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 FirstMate product.

With 2 notable exceptions

First, 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.

And lastly, we find 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.

FirstMate Limited Ingredient
Canned Dog Food Review

Based on its ingredients alone, FirstMate Limited Ingredient Dog Food looks like an above-average wet product.

The dashboard displays a dry matter protein reading of 50%, a fat level of 23% and estimated carbohydrates of about 19%.

As a group, the brand features an average protein content of 43% and a mean fat level of 23%. Together, these figures suggest a carbohydrate content of 27% for the overall product line.

And a fat-to-protein ratio of about 52%.

Which means this FirstMate product line contains…

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

Free of any plant-based protein boosters, this looks like the profile of a canned dog food containing a significant amount of meat.

Bottom line?

FirstMate Limited Ingredient is a grain-free canned dog food using a generous amount of named meats as its dominant source of animal protein, thus earning the brand 5 stars.

Enthusiastically recommended.

However, because of its unusually high fat-to-protein ratio, the Turkey formula may not be suitable for some animals.

FirstMate Dog Food
Recall History

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

The Dog Food Advisor is privately owned. We do not accept money, gifts, samples or other incentives in exchange for special consideration in preparing our reviews.

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For more information, please visit our Disclaimer and Disclosure page.

Important FDA Alert

The FDA is investigating a potential link between diet and heart disease in dogs. Click here for details.

Notes and Updates

  1. Adapted by The Dog Food Advisor from the official definition of other fish ingredients as published by the Association of American Feed Control Officials

07/27/2020 Last Update