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Hill’s Prescription Diet Digestive Care I/D Canine Dog Food Review (Dry)

Hills Prescription Diet I D Digestive Care Dry Dog Food

Rating:

Hill’s Prescription Diet Digestive Care I/D Canine is not rated due to its intentional therapeutic design.

The Hill”s Prescription Diet Digestive Care I/D Canine product line includes 4 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.

Product AAFCO
Hill’s Prescription Diet I/D Canine Chicken Flavor A
Hill’s Prescription Diet I/D Stress Canine M
Hill’s Prescription Diet I/D Low Fat Canine M
Hill’s Prescription Diet I/D Small Bites Canine A

Recipe and Label Analysis

Hill’s Prescription Diet I/D Canine Chicken Flavor 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.


Hill's Prescription Diet I/D Canine Chicken Flavor

Dry Dog Food

Estimated Dry Matter Nutrient Content

Protein = 27% | Fat = 14% | Carbs = 51%

Ingredients: Brewers rice, whole grain corn, chicken meal, pea protein, egg product, corn gluten meal, chicken fat, chicken liver flavor, pork liver flavor, ground pecan shells, lactic acid, potassium chloride, flaxseed, dried beet pulp, dried citrus pulp, dicalcium phosphate, iodized salt, fish oil, soybean oil, pressed cranberries, vitamins (vitamin E supplement, l-ascorbyl-2-polyphosphate (source of vitamin C), niacin supplement, thiamine mononitrate, calcium pantothenate, vitamin A supplement, riboflavin supplement, biotin, pyridoxine hydrochloride, vitamin B12 supplement, folic acid, vitamin D3 supplement), choline chloride, calcium carbonate, l-tryptophan, minerals (ferrous sulfate, zinc oxide, copper sulfate, manganous oxide, calcium iodate, sodium selenite), taurine, mixed tocopherols for freshness, natural flavors, beta-carotene

Fiber (estimated dry matter content) = 2.1%

Red denotes controversial item

Estimated Nutrient Content
MethodProteinFatCarbs
Guaranteed Analysis27%14%NA
Dry Matter Basis27%14%51%
Calorie Weighted Basis24%31%45%
Protein = 24% | Fat = 31% | Carbs = 45%

Ingredient Analysis

The first ingredient in this dog food is brewers rice. Brewers rice is a cereal grain by-product consisting of the small fragments left over after milling whole rice. Aside from the caloric energy it contains, this item is of only modest nutritional value to a dog.

The second ingredient is corn. Corn is an inexpensive and controversial cereal grain. And aside from its energy content, this grain is of only modest nutritional value to a dog.

The third item is chicken meal. Chicken meal is considered a meat concentrate and contains nearly 300% more protein than fresh chicken.

The fourth ingredient is pea protein, what remains of a pea after removing the starchy part of the vegetable.

Even though it contains over 80% protein, this ingredient would be expected to have a lower biological value than meat.

And less costly plant-based products like this can notably boost the total protein reported on the label — a factor that must be considered when judging the meat content of this dog food.

The fifth ingredient is egg product, an unspecified (wet or dry?) form of shell-free eggs. Quality can vary significantly. Lower grade egg product can even come from commercial hatcheries — from eggs that have failed to hatch.

In any case, eggs are easy to digest and have an exceptionally high biological value.

The sixth ingredient is corn gluten meal. Gluten is the rubbery residue remaining once corn has had most of its starchy carbohydrate washed out of it.

Although corn gluten meal contains 60% protein, this ingredient would be expected to have a lower biological value than meat.

And less costly plant-based products like this can notably boost the total protein reported on the label — a factor that must be considered when judging the actual meat content of this dog food.

The seventh 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.

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 6 notable exceptions

First, we find 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.

Next, beet pulp is a controversial ingredient, a high fiber by-product of sugar beet processing.

Some denounce beet pulp as an inexpensive filler while others cite its outstanding intestinal health and blood sugar benefits.

We only call your attention here to the controversy and believe the inclusion of beet pulp in reasonable amounts in most dog foods is entirely acceptable.

In addition, soybean oil is red flagged here only due to its rumored (yet unlikely) link to canine food allergies.

However, since soybean oil is high in omega-6 fatty acids and contains no omega-3’s, it’s considered less nutritious than flaxseed oil or a named animal fat.

Next, 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. We view its presence in this recipe as a positive addition.

This food also includes 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, 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.

Nutrient Analysis

Although this is a prescription product, our review has nothing to do with the accuracy of claims made by the manufacturer as to the product’s ability to treat or cure a specific health condition.

So, to find out whether or not this dog food is appropriate for your particular pet, you must consult your veterinarian.

With that understanding…

Based on its ingredients alone, Hill’s Prescription Diet Digestive Care I/D Canine looks like an average dry kibble.

The dashboard displays a dry matter protein reading of 27%, a fat level of 14% and estimated carbohydrates of about 51%.

As a group, the brand features an average protein content of 26% and a mean fat level of 11%. Together, these figures suggest a carbohydrate content of 55% for the overall product line.

And a fat-to-protein ratio of about 41%.

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

When you consider the protein-boosting effect of the pea protein, corn gluten meal and flaxseed, this looks like the profile of a kibble containing a moderate amount of meat.

Our Rating of Hill’s Prescription Diet
Digestive Care I/D Canine Food

Hill’s Prescription Diet Digestive Care I/D Canine is a grain-inclusive dry dog food using a moderate amount of named meat and by-product meals as its dominant source of animal protein.

However, due to its intentional therapeutic design, this dog food is not rated.

Hill’s Prescription Diet I/D Canine Food Recall History

The following automated list (if present) includes all dog food recalls related to Hill’s through December 2022.

You can view a complete list of all dog food recalls since 2009 here.

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More Hill’s Brand Reviews

The following Hill’s dog food reviews are also posted on this website:

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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Important FDA Alert

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

References

09/23/2022 Last Update

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