Review of Holistic Select Grain Free Canned Dog Food
Holistic Select Grain Free canned dog food receives the Advisor’s second-highest tier rating of 4.5 stars.
The Holistic Select Grain Free product line includes the 3 canned dog foods listed below.
Each recipe includes its AAFCO nutrient profile when available… Growth (puppy), Maintenance (adult), All Life Stages, Supplemental or Unspecified.
|Holistic Select Grain Free Beef Pate||4.5||A|
|Holistic Select Grain Free Lamb Pate||4.5||A|
|Holistic Select Grain Free Chicken Pate||4.5||A|
Recipe and Label Analysis
Holistic Select Grain Free Chicken Pate 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.
Holistic Select Grain Free Chicken Pate
Canned Dog Food
Estimated Dry Matter Nutrient Content
Ingredients: Chicken, chicken broth, chicken liver, whitefish, ground dried peas, potato protein, ground flaxseed, cassia gum, xanthan gum, potassium chloride, salt, apple powder, cranberry powder, pumpkin powder, canola oil, chicory root extract, choline chloride, zinc proteinate, iron proteinate, blueberry powder, papaya powder, pomegranate powder, thiamine mononitrate, vitamin E supplement, peppermint leaf powder, cinnamon, fennel powder, copper proteinate, manganese proteinate, sodium selenite, cobalt proteinate, niacin, d-calcium pantothenate, vitamin A supplement, riboflavin supplement, biotin, vitamin B12 supplement, potassium iodide, pyridoxine hydrochloride, vitamin D3 supplement, folic acid
Fiber (estimated dry matter content) = 4.5%
Red denotes controversial item
|Estimated Nutrient Content|
|Dry Matter Basis||55%||27%||10%|
|Calorie Weighted Basis||42%||51%||8%|
The first ingredient in this dog food is chicken. Chicken is considered “the clean combination of flesh and skin… derived from the parts or whole carcasses of chicken”.1
Chicken is naturally rich in the ten essential amino acids required by a dog to sustain life.
The second 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 third ingredient is chicken liver, an organ meat sourced from a named animal and thus considered a beneficial component.
The next ingredient is whitefish, a marine or freshwater species native to Canada and the California coast.
The fifth ingredient includes ground dried peas. Dried peas are a good source of carbohydrates. Plus they’re naturally rich in dietary fiber.
However, dried peas contain about 27% protein, a factor that must be considered when judging the meat content of this dog food.
The sixth ingredient is potato protein, the dry residue remaining after removing the starchy part of a potato.
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 actual meat content of this dog food.
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 and contain about 19% protein.
The eighth ingredient is cassia gum. Cassia gum is a plant extract likely used here as a gelling agent and providing no nutritional value to this 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 Holistic Select product.
With 4 notable exceptions…
First, we find 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 that 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.
Next, chicory root extract is rich in inulin, a starch-like compound made up of repeating units of carbohydrates and found in certain roots and tubers.
Not only is inulin a natural source of soluble dietary fiber, it’s also a prebiotic used to promote the growth of healthy bacteria in a dog’s digestive tract.
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, this food includes 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.
Based on its ingredients alone, Holistic Select Grain Free canned dog food looks like an above-average wet product.
As a group, the brand features an average protein content of 55% and a mean fat level of 27%. Together, these figures suggest a carbohydrate content of 10% for the overall product line.
And a fat-to-protein ratio of about 50%.
Which means this Holistic Select product line contains…
Above-average protein. Above-average fat. And below-average carbs when compared to other canned dog foods.
Even when you consider the protein-boosting effect of the dried peas, potato protein and flaxseed, this looks like the profile of a wet product containing a notable amount of meat.
Our Rating of Holistic Select Grain Free Dog Food
Holistic Select Grain Free is a canned dog food using a notable amount of named meats as its dominant source of animal protein, thus earning the brand 4.5 stars.
However, it’s unfortunate the company chose to include so much plant-based protein in its recipe. Otherwise, we would have been compelled to award this product a higher rating.
Holistic Select Dog Food
The following automated list (if present) includes all dog food recalls since 2009 related to Holistic Select.
No recalls noted.
You can view a complete list of all dog food recalls since 2009 here.
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More Holistic Select Brand 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.
- Association of American Feed Control Officials ↩
02/17/2022 Last Update