Grandma Mae’s Country Naturals Grain Free Dog Food Review (Dry)

Rating:

Grandma Mae’s Country Naturals Grain Free Dog Food receives the Advisor’s second-highest tier rating of 4 stars.

The Grandma Mae’s Country Naturals Grain Free product line includes 11 dry 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.

Use the links below to check prices and package sizes at an online retailer.

Grandma Mae’s Country Naturals Grain Free Dakota Frontier was selected to represent the other products in the line for this review.

Grandma Mae's Country Naturals Grain Free Dakota Frontier

Dry Dog Food

Estimated Dry Matter Nutrient Content

Protein = 29% | Fat = 16% | Carbs = 47%

Ingredients: Buffalo meal, chickpeas, lentils, yellow peas, tapioca, canola oil (preserved with mixed tocopherols), sweet potato, menhaden fish oil, natural flavor, calcium carbonate, suncured alfalfa meal, dicalcium phosphate, dried kelp, carrots, parsley, lettuce, watercress, spinach, celery, dl-methionine, salt, choline chloride, l-lysine, monosodium phosphate, dried Lactobacillus acidophilus fermentation product, dried Bacillus subtilis fermentation product, dried Bifidobacterium thermophilum fermentation product, dried Bifidobacterium longum fermentation product, dried Enterococcus faecium fermentation product, zinc proteinate, vitamin E supplement, niacin, zinc sulfate, ferrous sulfate, riboflavin, copper proteinate, manganese proteinate, vitamin A supplement, copper sulfate, d-calcium pantothenate, vitamin B12 supplement, manganese sulfate, biotin, vitamin D3 supplement, cobalt proteinate, thiamine mononitrate, folic acid, sodium selenite, calcium iodate

Fiber (estimated dry matter content) = 4.5%

Red denotes controversial item

Estimated Nutrient Content
MethodProteinFatCarbs
Guaranteed Analysis26%14%NA
Dry Matter Basis29%16%47%
Calorie Weighted Basis26%33%41%
Protein = 26% | Fat = 33% | Carbs = 41%

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

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

  • Chickpeas
  • Lentils
  • Peas

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 fifth ingredient is tapioca, a gluten-free, starchy carbohydrate extract made from the root of the cassava plant.

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

The eighth ingredient lists menhaden fish oil. Menhaden are small ocean fish related to herring. Their oil is naturally rich in the prized EPA and DHA type of omega-3 fatty acids, two high quality fats boasting the highest bio-availability to both dogs and humans.

What’s more, in their mid-depth habitat, menhaden are not as likely to be exposed to mercury contamination as is typical with deep water species.

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 three notable exceptions

First, we find 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.

Next, we note the inclusion of dried fermentation products in this recipe. Fermentation products are typically added to provide enzymes to aid the animal with digestion.

And lastly, 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.

Grandma Mae’s Country Naturals
Grain Free Dog Food Review

Judging by its ingredients alone, Grandma Mae’s Country Naturals Grain Free Dog Food looks like an above-average dry 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 29%, a fat level of 16% and estimated carbohydrates of about 47%.

As a group, the brand features an average protein content of 29% and a mean fat level of 14%. Together, these figures suggest a carbohydrate content of 49% for the overall product line.

And a fat-to-protein ratio of about 49%.

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

When you consider the protein-boosting effect of the peas, lentils, chickpeas and alfalfa meal, this looks like the profile of a kibble containing a moderate amount of meat.

Bottom line?

Grandma Mae’s Country Naturals Grain Free is a dry dog food using a moderate amount of named meat meals as its main source of animal protein, thus earning the brand 4 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.

Grandma Mae’s 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.

Related Topics

Readers interested in Grandma Mae’s dog food may also wish to check out these popular pages, too…

Important FDA Alert

The FDA is investigating a potential link between grain-free diets and heart disease in dogs. Click here for details.

A Final Word

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Notes and Updates

04/14/2019 Last Update