Fromm Family Gold Grain Free (Canned)


Rating: ★★★★½

Fromm Family Gold Grain Free canned dog food receives the Advisor’s second-highest tier rating of 4.5 stars.

The Fromm Family Gold product line includes 3 grain-free canned dog foods.

Each recipe below includes its related AAFCO nutrient profile when available on the product’s official webpage: Growth, Maintenance, All Life Stages, Supplemental or Unspecified.

Important: Because many websites do not reliably specify which Growth or All Life Stages recipes are safe for large breed puppies, we do not include that data in this report. Be sure to check actual packaging for that information.

  • Fromm Family Gold Grain Free Chicken Pate [A]
  • Fromm Family Gold Grain Free Chicken and Duck Pate [A]
  • Fromm Family Gold Grain Free Salmon and Chicken Pate [A]

Fromm Family Gold Grain Free Salmon and Chicken Pate was selected to represent the other products in the line for this review.

Fromm Family Gold Grain Free Salmon and Chicken Pate

Canned Dog Food

Estimated Dry Matter Nutrient Content

Protein = 41% | Fat = 30% | Carbs = 22%

Ingredients: Salmon, chicken, chicken broth, chicken liver, potatoes, carrots, flaxseeds, peas, tomato paste, salt, potassium chloride, minerals, xanthan gum, dried egg product, locust bean gum, vitamins

Fiber (estimated dry matter content) = 5.5%

Red items indicate controversial ingredients

Estimated Nutrient Content
Guaranteed Analysis9%7%NA
Dry Matter Basis41%30%22%
Calorie Weighted Basis31%53%16%
Protein = 31% | Fat = 53% | Carbs = 16%

The first ingredient in this dog food is salmon. Salmon is an oily marine and freshwater 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 chicken. Chicken is considered “the clean combination of flesh and skin… derived from the parts or whole carcasses of chicken”.2

Salmon and chicken are both naturally rich in the ten essential amino acids required by a dog to sustain life.

The third ingredient is chicken broth. Broths are of only modest nutritional value. Yet because they add both flavor and moisture to a dog food, they are a common addition component in many canned products.

The fourth ingredient is chicken liver. This is an organ meat sourced from a named animal and thus considered a beneficial component.

The fifth 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 sixth ingredient includes carrots. Carrots are rich in beta-carotene, minerals and dietary fiber.

The seventh 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.

The eighth ingredient lists 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.

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 one notable exception

Although the vitamins and minerals added to this product are not detailed sufficiently here to permit us to judge their quality, we’re reassured to find a detailed list of naturally present nutrients on the company’s website.

Fromm Family Gold Grain Free
Canned Dog Food
The Bottom Line

Judging by its ingredients alone, Fromm Family Gold Grain Free canned dog food looks like an above-average wet product.

But ingredient quality by itself cannot tell the whole story. We still need to estimate the product’s meat content before determining a final rating.

The dashboard displays a dry matter protein reading of 41%, a fat level of 30% and estimated carbohydrates of about 22%.

As a group, the brand features an average protein content of 41% and a mean fat level of 30%. Together, these figures suggest a carbohydrate content of 22% for the overall product line.

And a fat-to-protein ratio of about 72%.

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

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

However, with 53% of the total calories in our example coming from fat versus just 31% from protein, some recipes may not be suitable for every animal.

Bottom line?

Fromm Family Gold Grain Free is a meat-based canned dog food using a notable amount of named meats as its main sources of animal protein, thus earning the brand 4.5 stars.

Highly recommended.

Please note certain recipes are sometimes given a higher or lower rating based upon our estimate of their total meat content and (when appropriate) their fat-to-protein ratios..

Those looking for a nice kibble to go with this product may wish to visit our review of Fromm Gold Nutritionals dry dog food.

Fromm Dog Food
Recall History

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

To learn why our ratings have nothing to do with a product’s recall history, please visit our Dog Food Recalls FAQ page.

Get free dog food recall alerts sent to you by email. Subscribe to The Advisor’s recall notification list.

Dog Food Coupons
and Discounts

Readers are invited to check for coupons and discounts shared by others in our Dog Food Coupons Forum.

Or click the buying tip below. Please be advised we receive a fee for referrals made to the following online store.

A Final Word

The descriptions and analyses expressed in this and every article on this website represent the views and opinions of the author.

The Dog Food Advisor does not test dog food products.

We rely entirely on the integrity of the information provided by each company. As such, the accuracy of every review is directly dependent upon the specific data a company chooses to share.

Although it's our goal to ensure all the information on this website is correct, we cannot guarantee its completeness or its accuracy; nor can we commit to ensuring all the material is kept up-to-date on a daily basis.

We rely on tips from readers. To report a product change or request an update of any review, please contact us using this form.

Each review is offered in good faith and has been designed to help you make a more informed decision when buying dog food.

However, due to the biological uniqueness of every animal, none of our ratings are intended to suggest feeding a particular product will result in a specific dietary response or health benefit for your pet.

For a better understanding of how we analyze each product, please read our article, "The Problem with Dog Food Reviews".

Remember, no dog food can possibly be appropriate for every life stage, lifestyle or health condition. So, choose wisely. And when in doubt, consult a qualified veterinary professional for help.

In closing, we do not accept money, gifts or samples from pet food companies in exchange for special consideration in the preparation of our reviews or ratings.

However, we do receive a fee from for each purchase made as a direct result of a referral from our website. This fee is a fixed dollar amount and has nothing to do with the size of an order or the brand selected for purchase.

Have an opinion about this dog food? Or maybe the review itself? Please know we welcome your comments.

Notes and Updates

09/22/2017 Last Update

  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
  2. Association of American Feed Control Officials
  • Thomas Bushey

    Easy Homemade Raw Dog Food Recipe 🙂

  • Diane

    I am thinking flax may be an ingredient in any of these foods I have tried that is making my dog very itchy, chewing his paws to death and dry flaky skin and scabs on his back

  • Diane

    Wanted to try Taste of the Wild food for my dogs. I emailed them and they did confirm some of the ingredients in their food is from China so I will not be buying that. I bought Fromm’s Lamb and Lentil and Wellness grainfree beef stew and turkey and duck stew which they love.

  • Holly

    Which wet food is better for my dog on a grain free diet with seasonal allergies? Hes a moderately active senior. Daily walks and such. I want to mix it in with Taste of the Wild Pacific stream in the morning so he eats his supplements. Here is what I am trying right now: Zignature Trout and Salmon, Wellness Core Whitefish and Salmon, Fromm Family Gold Salmon and Chicken (my dog does well on Salmon recipes).I’m open to any option on also. Under $30/case, please.

  • theBCnut

    Oh, I agree about the issue of recalls. I don’t judge a company based on having a recall, I judge based on their response to the need to recall. And I think Fromm had an excellent response. But I would hate for a pet owner to read that it’s just a little vitamin D, it can’t do any harm and then ignore the recall and have their pet sicken.
    BTW, there are companies that have not had any recalls, but they are few and far between and I do think sooner or later, they will have recalls too. So far, there aren’t many companies that I would not use their food due to their response to recall and those would be Diamond, Blue Buffalo, and Evanger’s. there are some related to the chicken jerky fiasco too, but I wasn’t using their products to begin with, so no loss there.

  • Sam

    Just saying that, to get all excited about one recall seems silly. What company hasn’t had a recall? At least Fromm HAD the recall. That shows they are watching their own product.

  • theBCnut

    Actually, it’s oil soluble, so it can be stored in the body very easily and is not eliminated easily, so it isn’t hard to OD on if you get too much of it. And since some people feed nothing but the same food, day in and day out, it’s even easier to get an excess amount of Vit D when too much is supplied in the food.

  • Sam

    It was just elevated levels of Vit D. Not much to worry about. They probably recalled it because there was more of it than the label stated. Vitamin D is one of those ingredients that’s hard to OD on.

  • Ivey Sumrell

    Just had a recall!!!! Time to change the list of approved foods for March!

  • fourdogs

    The ingredients and GA have changed. Fromm says they have their own canning facility now. They added flax seed and some sort of gum. I really like Fromm Gold wet foods, as do my dogs. Very simple formulation. I’m a bit worried about the changes, to be honest. Flax usually makes my guys itchy.

  • Maritimer1

    If you want to add probiotic support you need to use a yogurt with NO ADDED SUGAR and LIVE cultures. A good yogurt should have only two ingredients: milk and the live cultures. Period. Doesn’t matter if it’s Greek or not. Greek yogurt is yogurt with some of the liquid removed. I make my own “Greek” yogurt. I make yogurt and then strain it. That is “Greek” yogurt.

  • Patty Peterson

    Trisha from Fromm customer service posted that if you keep the sales receipt and UPC code they will refund your money. Wasn’t that post to you, Dawn?
    Did she say you would have to send it back or just the receipts?
    I am new to this site and I see the comments are YEARS old!

  • Maureen Curran

    I’m trying to find out if there are any dog food cans without BPA ? This is stated on Ziwi Peak website:

    Are ZiwiPeak cans BPA-free? Yes. Our cans have a BPA-free food lining, ensuring contents are as safe and natural as possible.

  • theBCnut

    My understanding is if the can has seams, it has to be lined. They are experimenting with different coatings, but from what I read there is no evidence that the newer coatings are any better, just different.

  • Maureen Curran

    Is it possible to find a list of Dog food cans that do not contain BPA? I just contacted Fromm and this is the response I got.

    Thank you for your email and inquiry to Fromm Family Pet Foods.

    Our current cans still contain trace amounts of BPA and we are currently working with our canned food manufacturer to remedy this. BPA is a compound that is present as part of the epoxy-resin base used in non-aluminum metal cans. While it has been used for more than 50 years in metal cans, recent research has heightened public concerns about the safety of its use. Many scientific studies
    are currently being performed to better understand this concern. We have never detected BPA in any of our foods stored in our cans.

    Best Regards,

    Fromm Customer Service

  • read the letter posted above from Fromm re: the labels.

  • beaglemom

    I had the same concern and emailed the company directly. They seem to be having some issues with old vs. new labels but none of their recipes have contained Vitamin K for the past 6 years and the most up-to-date ingredient lists can always be found on their website. If you check the gold duck/chicken recipe, there is no Vitamin K supplement listed. Hope this helps!

  • Bernie B

    vitamin k supplement in the duck and chicken canned, but not in the chicken and salmon canned dog food???  are both made in usa?

  • Bernie B

    When you go to the actual label, it states a vitamin k supplement.

  • Elizabeth

    Yogurt doesn’t really add much in way of probiotics. You need to purchase the actual product. Naturesfarmacy offers a wonderful product called Digestive Enhancer and will add the probiotics and enzymes your dog needs.

  • Shuprtpoodles

    As much as these dog foods manufacturers charge and make a profit on their foods, I believe they should put the right ingredients listed on their product.  It bothers me grately that this world known company cared more about lossing money than puting CORRECT labels on their products.  That is just not, “ETHICAL.”  Shows their motive as the Bible says, “A man or woman is made known by their doings.”  I don’t trust them period. 

  • Paul128

    The first day I gave my miniature poodle puppy Fromm’s canned salmon & chicken pate, he picked out the Fromm’s.  Unfortunately, since then for every meal through today (5 days later) he refuses to eat the Fromm’s or the kibble.  I mix in cooked chicken, peas & a little yam to get him to eat, and he picks out the chicken.  I have yet to find a dog food this guy will eat as dinner.  Interestingly enough, he will take the kibble as a treat or reward from my hand.  However, in his dish (and I’ve tried different dog dishes), he rejects the kibble and canned dog food.  

  • Skoozie

    My little 8/9lbs chihuahua terrier mix will only eat a 1/4 c food a day…IF that! So I want to try and get him to eat and eat two meals a day I decided to try wet Fromm gold cans. I still want to keep him on kibbles but want to mix the wet w the dry…does anyone have suggestions to the amount if wet I should add to his 1/4c dry kibbles? I don’t want to over feed him. When I brought it home today I gave him the 1/4c dry food mixing it w 2-3T of wet….he ate it up…YAY! But I just want to see whAt others recommend when. Icing dry and wet. Thanks

  • Frankiesmom

    Kris, if you feel you need probiotics in your dog food you can actually add it your self with a tablespoon or two of plain yogurt. (Greek only) as it is the best yogurt.

  • Frankiesmom

    Well, I’m impressed!!!!!!!!!! I’ve heard about fromm for years but could never find it. I found it yesterday and got 3 cans. $3.98 per. holy cow.

    Frankie devoured it. He has been on Wellness his whole life….he is 8.

    Although Wellness is a wonderful dog food it lack taste as exhibited by my cats that continually turn up their noses to it. But ate it when hungry.

    Fromm on the other hand they eat hungry or not……so Fromm it will be from now on………..

    Thank you Mike Sagan for being here for us.

  • Adam Clive

    nah dont think so Kris.

  • Kris

    Do the Fromm canned formulas contain probiotics?

  • Gordon

    Dawn – Sorry I missed your earlier question to me, you posted above at July 13, 2011 at 4:27 am, near the bottom. In answer, I don’t buy from BARFWORLD, because I get it in Australia as I’m in Sydney. Whilst yes it is expensive, I get it cheaper than what US citizens would buy it for. Having said that, it is still expensive to feed on a full time basis.

    But by the same token, my kibble rotation/mix in Artemis and Earthborn range that I feed at alternate times to BARF, I buy at almost twice the price that US citizens are privy to. But then, we also on average receive higher salaries than US counterparts.




    WOW!!!!! am I impressed!!!…I JUST said yesterday…well I guess that site was right..Fromm doesn’t get back to their customers :O*( i was heart broken! Little did i know..Tricia was forming this wonderful email! I did still go ahead and buy the NEW grain Beef dry food and my girls omg!! i cant believe it…the puppy is pretty fussy but always preferred kibble to can….but….my 2 1/2 yr old Beagle Sophie Girl she never went near kibble EVER…they were pretty much raw fed…but times i forgot to defrost it or didn’t have any left i would TRY kibble and nooo way…..well…I poured some down on the rug (Ha to trick her it wasn’t HER FOOD IN HER BOWL AND HAD TO EAT) well it worked…but she ate the entire amount i put down!!!! and started wagging her tail looking at the bag!! then the puppy (Sabrina) follwed suit!! :O) i did also buy a case (a big no no since only on disability and its quite expensive) of the chicken pate and unfortunately…that is..not..being a hit :O*( now im stuck and lost $48…..i should have went with my gut and gut the shredded beef to go with the new beef dry :O*( but that’s $50 :0O !! :O*( I also was going to buy the new grain free surf and turf but that site ( mentioned well the reviewers and mike said theres copper oxide in the Fromm food….ugh had another worry now I looked it up and said yes dogs need copper but should….never…be given copper oxide :O*( so i didn’t order that….. it also said some of your products had that men—something dont know how to spell…the bad vit k. :O/ so needless to say i was so disappointed…..Thank ou for clearing all up about the vit k…..but now…can you tell me is there …still copper oxide in the Fromm products :O/…….
    I also wanted to ask your permission if its ok i copy & paste your email you just sent….and put it on that site…because so many want to use your product but were worried about the vit k and copper oxide..they will be sooo happy to read your email! they also were very upset about never getting thru to you ( I feel SPECIAL) now :O)
    Thank you soooo much for your time patience and understanding……
    ps do you have coupons (crossing my fingers) now i have that whole case of pate their not eating and REALLLY want to try the shredded beef that I know they would love!!! except…due to my disabilty and in a wheelchair I dont drive i do 98% of shopping online…if theres any place you know online i can get a discount??? i would deeply appreciate it…Thanks again Tricia…

    Hi Dawn,

    Great to hear back from you! Thank you kindly for your great words of encouragement and support… both so appreciated.
    Next, just like the MSB or synthetic Vitamin K we also removed Copper Oxide from our ingredient panel a few years back already. It is the same label issue that may show it as an ingredient. Again, the best advice I can give on accuracy for ingredients is using our website to guide you. This is the most up-to-date listing for ingredients, guaranteed and typical analysis.

    Lastly, I want to let you know in advance that during our recent production with the Shredded Beef can formula we did run into some consistency issues. Now while those have been worked out, depending on rotation of inventory there could still be some in circulation. We will replace anything you are not satisfied with but please know in advance you could receive a can or two that is more “soupy” than designed. That said, nutritionally the recipe is just the same but the texture may be a bit different.

    As always, very important, please retain your itemized store receipt (even online store) and the UPC / Proof-of-purchase from every and any recipe of ours that you purchase. If for any reason you or the girls are not 100% satisfied we will refund your purchase price. Just need your itemized store receipt and the UPC sent back to us and we will send you a check, no questions asked.

    Warm regards,
    Fromm Customer Service



    Dear Dawn,

    Thank you for your email and in choosing Fromm Family Foods.

    First, I am so personally sorry to hear of the loss of your daughter and further all the concern you have now had with your food choice for your Beagle.

    The thing you have to do is understand who we are, what we do, and how we do it. From there you will have to make your choice to trust in us. Please let me tell you more and see what you think;

    Fromm has been around since 1904, in 1938 we created the vaccination of distemper given to our pets today – right here in our lab downstairs from the office I am in – and in 1948 we started making Premium kibble pet food. This makes us one of the oldest pet food companies in the US today. Our only focus, not top priority, but only focus is pet health. Further what sets us apart is that we are still a small family run company. In fact, this year we introduced our 5th generation family member into the company and are planning a long and innovative future. In the over 60 years we have been making pet food, we have only one goal and that is superior health for every animal and pet that eats our food, not just here in the US but globally. Yes we export too and as an international company there is a lot of work to be done by our very small staff of 30 full-time employees.

    There is no “Customer Service Department” or cubes of staff on headsets taking dozens of calls a minute repeating scripts of what to say and what to do for every situation. What you get is me, one person who for the last 8 years is responsible for every phone call, every email and every pet parent that has a simple question to a long concern. So yes, I can say sometimes it may be difficult to get through or responses can take longer than we like to wait in an “instant” society, and while I apologize for that ~ its for the best reason in the world. When I do get to have time with my customer, I can answer honestly openly and from the heart. I can take my time and explain and I can follow up to check in that we have made the right match with our recipes. I “talk” with my customers, not “to” my customers. It sounds as though from what you shared you are someone will appreciate that more than others.

    I want you to know that Fromm would never select an ingredient that wasn’t as safe as possible. So addressing the MSB or Mono-sodium bisulfite (synthetic Vitamin K) while today it still has not been banned by the FDA we discontinued using it over 3 years ago. Based on studies and research done in the UK, we felt it was a better choice for the natural source of Vitamin K in our fresh human quality meats.
    So why was it still listed on the labels? As a small company, our older bags were all labeled by hand. Peeling a label off a sticky sheet and putting on the bag. To help keep costs on packaging in check we would buy labels at mass quantity. Hundreds of thousands at a time usually. When we make a change for the better, like removing MSB, we can’t just toss the pre-made labels like a large commercial company could afford to do. We did make announcements on our website and we also recommend reviewing the ingredient panel listed there for the most up-to-date comprehensive listing. I know its not perfect, and you won’t get any argument from me there but it how they do things to keep the money flowing to the best ingredients our money can buy. Speaking of which…..

    Ingredients. What we do have is the highest quality ingredients money can buy. Human quality meats, fresh and whole produce (vegetables and fruits), whole grains like pearled barley and oatmeal. And what we don’t use; Cheap Fillers, by-products, corn, wheat, soy, artificial colors, flavors or harsh chemical preservatives. You just won’t find the bad stuff in our food. And even more interesting is the selections we make before it is the “popular” thing to do… like Omega 6 and 3 Fatty Acids, and glucosamine. In fact that is a really good example of why we are the company we are – instead of using a synthetic supplement of glucosamine we select to use a natural source of chicken cartilage. We found this to be more absorbing in the blood stream and therefore more effective for your pet’s joint health. Its the little things like that detail that time and again set us one step above. Fromm has always been about quiet innovation which is why you won’t finding us making a big deal about doing the right thing all over the Internet or advertisements.

    Speaking of which to that…..the Internet. It is an awesome and powerful tool. Too bad it can often times do more damage than it can good. While getting information on products and everything to anything is great, its important to understand the resources providing that. Are they up-to-date? Are they connected to an competitor? Who is the “person” on the other end of that system providing the information. From that, I know I can say it is very overwhelming. When I first came on board with Fromm all those years ago, I was new to the pet food industry. Boy did I have a rude awakening. I don’t know how many times I felt sick to my stomach and cried quiet a bit. I had no idea what really went on. It seemed the more I tried to learn (from the Internet too) the more I as shocked and after awhile it got to be too much. I just didn’t know what to think. So I went to the president of the company, my boss, and the Head Chef here at Fromm. He sat me down and answered every question I had. He took time to explain how and why for every part of it, not just give me a list of answers and send me away. It was at that time that he started my passion for what I do. Eight years later I still have all the fire in my belly I ever did for what and who Fromm is. If I got fired tomorrow, I would still feed Fromm recipes to my dogs (my babies). I could not in good mind choose any other food knowing what I know. I trust with all my heart and with their lives everything Fromm creates and offers.

    So that, Dawn is it. Its who we are and what we do. I would like to think that you may have some further questions and I welcome you to send them my way. I am in the office Monday – Friday 8am – 4pm (CST). I promise that I will do my best to get to your email and respond as quickly as possible. Thank you so kindly for your email and giving us the opportunity to address your concerns.

    Best Regards,
    Fromm Customer Service

    Fromm Family Foods
    [email protected]

    Find us on Facebook!

    Fromm Family Foods
    [email protected]

    Find us on Facebook!



  • Gordon

    Ah, ok then. I gotcha

  • Jonathan

    Hey gordon. we don’t sell TOTW, I was mentioning that people seem to have more problems with TOTW as opposed to some other grain-free foods. And no, we don’t sell Artemis.

  • Gordon

    Jonathan – I read on another thread (can’t remember which now but it wasn’t under TOTW) that you mentioned you had more customer complaints about the TOTW kibbles you sell as opposed to other brands of similar grade.

    I’m curious, does your shop sell the Artemis lines of kibbles, and if so, what do your customers say about same? Artemis poor customer relations aside, that I spoke of before, I personally found same to show good results in my dogs.

  • Gordon

    Yeah I feel sorry having ever fed my dogs Purina Pro Plan, albeit a long while ago. Anyway, I don’t believe they’ll be affected by that trash, since I’ve been alternating for them, between better alternative, not to mention, natural dog foods.

  • Hi Smitty… It appears you are again confusing the good “natural” version of vitamin K (K1 and K2) with the not-so-good synthetic form (K3 or menadione). In the article you reference, I’m not sure why you believe menadione can be used to prevent cancer. Here’s what your article says about vitamin K:

    “Available scientific evidence does not support the use of vitamin K supplements for cancer treatment or prevention. However, a small clinical trial found that a vitamin K2 compound seemed to reduce the risk that liver cancer would come back after surgery. Later studies have not shown much effect, and vitamin K is now being tested along with other drugs to find out if that will help more.”

    Also, contrary to what you claim, this same article goes on to say:

    “The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) does not allow menadione (vitamin K3) to be sold as a dietary supplement for humans, although it is allowed in some feeds for farm animals.”

    And lastly, the Reuter’s article you cite makes no mention of vitamin K-3 (menadione) at all. The anti-cancer claims are directed to the natural forms of vitamin K (vitamin K1 and K2) only.

    So, on this website, menadione will remain flagged as a controversial (and unnecessary) dog food supplement.

  • smitty
  • Hi Smitty… The real question here is why pet food formulators even use synthetic vitamin K in the first place? After all, dogs do not require much vitamin K for survival. The natural versions of vitamin K (K1 and K2) can be easily added to a dog food in the form of natural ingredients (like kale, lettuce, spinach, swiss chard, broccoli, etc.). And the normal intestinal flora are another rich and natural source of K1, too.

    Also, regarding your claims about what versions of vitamin K can or cannot be sold in supplements, it appears you may be in error.

    According to a peer-reviewed article published in 2004 by the Linus Pauling Institute at Oregon State University (references and peer-review information posted below):

    “In the U.S., vitamin K1 is available without a prescription in multivitamin and other supplements in doses that generally range from 10-120 mcg per supplement. A form of vitamin K2, menatetrenone (MK-4), has been used to treat osteoporosis in Japan and is currently under study in the United States.

    Safety and Toxicity

    Although allergic reaction is possible, there is no known toxicity associated with high doses of the phylloquinone (vitamin K1) or menaquinone (vitamin K2) forms of vitamin K ). The same is not true for synthetic menadione (vitamin K3) and its derivatives. Menadione can interfere with the function of glutathione, one of the body’s natural antioxidants, resulting in oxidative damage to cell membranes. Menadione given by injection has induced liver toxicity, jaundice, and hemolytic anemia (due to the rupture of red blood cells) in infants; therefore, menadione is no longer used for treatment of vitamin K deficiency. No tolerable upper level (UL) of intake has been established for vitamin K.”

    Written in May 2004 by:
    Jane Higdon, Ph.D.
    Linus Pauling Institute
    Oregon State University

    Updated in May 2008 by:
    Victoria J. Drake, Ph.D.
    Linus Pauling Institute
    Oregon State University

    Reviewed in May 2008 by:
    Sarah L. Booth, Ph.D.
    Director, Vitamin K Research Program
    Jean Mayer USDA Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging
    Tufts University

    Vitamin K and the Newborn Reviewed by
    Dennis T. Costakos, M.D. F.A.A.P.
    Franciscan Skemp Healthcare-Mayo Health System
    Mayo Medical School

    Ferland G. Vitamin K. In: Bowman BA, Russell RM, eds. Present Knowledge in Nutrition. 9th ed. Volume 1. Washington, D.C.: ILSI Press; 2006:220-230.

    Olson RE. Vitamin K. In: Shils M, Olson JA, Shike M, Ross AC, eds. Modern Nutrition in Health and Disease. 9th ed. Baltimore: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins; 1999:363-380.

    Food and Nutrition Board, Institute of Medicine. Vitamin K. Dietary Reference Intakes for Vitamin A, Vitamin K, Arsenic, Boron, Chromium, Copper, Iodine, Iron, Manganese, Molybdenum, Nickel, Silicon, Vanadium, and Zinc. Washington, D.C.: National Academy Press; 2001:162-196.

    Hendler SS, Rorvik DR, eds. PDR for Nutritional Supplements. Montvale: Medical Economics Company, Inc; 2001.

    National Institutes of Health. Vitamin K and Bone Turnover in Postmenopausal Women. [Web page]. Available at: Accessed January 21, 2008.

    On this website, we feel justified to have have classified menadione as (at the very least) a controversial dog food supplement. And since there are safer ways to introduce vitamin K into a dog’s diet, we feel it’s both fair and appropriate to list K3 as a controversial ingredient.

  • Gordon

    That may be so smitty. I don’t claim to know the legalities of its use in the US or here in Australia. I know though, my dogs won’t be fed anything containing K3, as long as I can help it.

  • Gordon

    “No documented case of poisoning”, only suspected links to cancer. That’s all, huh! No big deal.

  • Gordon

    Nice try Smitty, but I “aint” buying it!

    Thanks for confirming that all pet foods with vitamin K specified or otherwise is K3. Now I know for certain not to buy those pet foods.

    Smitty, you work for Purina? LMAO

  • smitty

    I meant to say natural source of K are not common in pet food, not K3.

  • smitty

    Gordon says:

    “The question should be, is the vitamin K in the Fromm label, specified as to what K it is? Because man made vitamin K being K3 or K4 (menadione) is synthetic and cheaper than using natural vitamin K1 and K2 (phylloquinone and phytonadione). If it shows the aforementioned, that’s great. If it shows the latter, then I’d be concerned. If it does not specify, then I’d be concerned”

    First, neither K1 or K2 are approved in the US for oral consumption in dog food. Vet’s will use it if the dog becomes poisoned but usually it is by injection.

    Second, the person you quoted from The Dog Food Project has some nutritional certificate from our equivalent of a Junior College. There has never been a documented case of K3 posioning ever in 50 years of its inclusion in pet or animal food. The amount is so small its silly to even think it is a risk. Morever, she conveniently leaves out the fact that the only study showing toxicity was in rats where 1,000 times the dose of K3 was used and its was not eaten, it was injected into the rats. The anemia it caused is a general condition as any number of otherwise safe compounds could cause it if they were dosed at 1,000 times the normal dose.

    If you are concerned about things like K3 you should also be concerned about a bunch of herbs that are used in “holistic” foods.

    It is true that K3 were banned in the US from stores like GNC but because body builders and high school altletes were taking it because of incorrect information that it helped with strenghth.

    The lesson on K3 is don’t believe what you read on the internet. Many talented nutritionists would like to see the public hysteria about it because it is put just in case. Natural sources of K3 are not common in pet food.

    You should also know that K3 is water soluable so it does not build up in fatty tissue. That is another reason why it has been used.

  • Jonathan

    Very true, indeed. Integrity will always be the big selling point for me!

  • Gordon

    That’s why we as consumers need to be on guard, vigilant, and scrutinise the products we buy. And that’s also why this website we post our comments on, help educate other people including ourselves on improved canine health.

    Of course, businesses are for profit, as sustainability and more importantly, growth, is a key goal for any company. But that also doesn’t mean that a company risk deception in order to profit. Quality control and long term integrity will by far, aid any company’s future financial growth and longevity.

  • Jonathan

    Every food company is “for-profit”. otherwise, what would be the point? lol

    Now, the difference is whether a company will sacrifice real nutrition for the sake of a few extra dollars or not. That is where integrity comes in. Of course, we cannot expect a company to run for free, right?

  • Gordon

    That’s right Shameless. But for-profit companies are where we mostly obtain our products to sustain life.

    Just because I don’t trust for-profit companies, doesn’t mean that I won’t buy from them. There are degrees of trust and deception, and BARF is made by Dr.Billinghurst, and also has a good reputation. A dog trainer that I know of and have bought items from, and who has provided me with some successful resolutions to my dogs’ behavourial control needs, knows Dr. Billinghurst personally, and speaks highly of him, even saying that he is foremost driven by the interest in the health of our animals before any profits.

    This may or may not be true, but given that he is also a Vet (Why having studied Veterinary Medicine and Science if uninterested in animal welfare), the fact that I see proven results in my dogs, and that I know of someone who knows him personally, my instincts are comfortable that BARF is honest in its advertised contents.

    One other benefit I have with BARF, unlike any other dog food manufacturer, at least that I know of, is that I, or anyone else in Australia and perhaps the world can actually speak to him in person. I’ve done so once. He advertised his Mobile phone number (Cell phone number), on his products, and whilst his wife, Ros, will mostly answer any calls, she does pass the phone over to him if he’s in her company and she can’t answer the question.

  • ShamelessRawFoodie

    Hi Gordon – In the above comment, you wrote “I personally don’t trust any for-profit companies”. You feed BARF. Is BARF a for-profit company?

  • Gordon

    Hi Karen Gordon – I read your comments and am glad that you are scrutinising controversial and what’s to you and many, suspect ingredients. Keep your instincts about you.

    As for me, and please don’t let me dissuade you from what Mike said, or Fromm said in their phone conversation to you and/or their email reply, but I personally don’t trust any for-profit companies. I’m too cynical for my own liking, but I personally would return a product that claims to have an ingredient on its label, but states otherwise verbally or email.

    That’s just me. Otherwise, I have no personal experience with Fromm, and for all intensive purposes, Fromm might very well have a good reputation.

    Again I’m digressing and I have a habit of doing so, but I enjoy sharing my opinions on forums, and just want to also say, that the most truest quote/cliche I have ever heard, is “Money is the root of all evil”. For the sake of saving money, generally I believe companies will and do deceive consumers regarding in this case, dog food ingredients, such as artificially made vitamin K as opposed natural sources of vitamin K which are found mostly in rich green type of vegetables such spinach, kale, and lettuce. None of which is shown in Fromm’s ingredients list. Intestinal bacteria also produces vitamin K naturally (One of the good bacterias), at least it does in humans.

    The question should be, is the vitamin K in the Fromm label, specified as to what K it is? Because man made vitamin K being K3 or K4 (menadione) is synthetic and cheaper than using natural vitamin K1 and K2 (phylloquinone and phytonadione). If it shows the aforementioned, that’s great. If it shows the latter, then I’d be concerned. If it does not specify, then I’d be concerned.

    I like what “The Dog Food Project” at, has to say about it.

  • Karen Gordon

    I had email correspondence with a company representative and she told me they were using up labels that had been printed prior to the change and that new labels would be coming in soon. She apologized. I believe she was sincere and I told her I would take her word on it.

  • Hi Karen… Fromm has a good reputation. I’d be inclined to trust their explanation. In any case, matters of trust can only be decided by you.

  • Karen Gordon

    I just called the company and a girl working in customer service said it was a “mistake” printed on the label and that they don’t used vitamin K in their food. She said that the labels were printed by the thousands and the mistake was corrected on the website and not the labels. Sounds to me like the company should not be sending out cans of dog food with ingredient lists that are not correct..don’t you agree? I don’t know if I should feel comfortable feeding my dog a food that says it contains Vitamin K and the customer service dept. says it doesn’t. Would you?

  • Karen Gordon

    I just purchaed two cases of this food; one is salmon & chicken pate and one is chicken pate. On the ingredient list, Vitamin K supplement is listed right after calcium pantothenate and before potassium iodate. It isn’t listed on your ingredient list. Isn’t this vitamin controversial? I thought I should be avoiding buying food with this ingredient. How do I know what form of K is in the food? Thanks.

  • Hi Karen… Taurine is one of the natural amino acid building blocks used for making proteins. It has always been an important requirement of cat foods but only recently is gaining poularity for use in dog foods, too.

  • Karen

    In the “guaranteed analysis” part of the can, it says 0.1% taurine. What is taurine and why is it added or found in this food? Thanks.

  • Jessica

    These are great. My dog loves them and they look and smell like real food. I highly recommend as a topper too because they are soft enough that they are easy to mix in with kibble.