Innova Prime Grain Free (Dry)


Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆

This Product Now Marketed as
Innova Nature’s Table

Innova Prime Grain Free Dog Food receives the Advisor’s top rating of 5 stars.

The Innova Prime Grain Free product line includes three dry dog foods, each claimed to meet AAFCO nutrient profiles for all life stages.

The following is a list of recipes available at the time of this review.

  • Innova Prime Grain Free Salmon and Herring
  • Innova Prime Grain Free Chicken and Turkey
  • Innova Prime Grain Free Beef and Lamb Meal

Innova Prime Grain Free Salmon and Herring was selected to represent the other products in the line for this review.

Innova Prime Grain Free Salmon and Herring

Dry Dog Food

Estimated Dry Matter Nutrient Content

Protein = 39% | Fat = 18% | Carbs = 35%

Ingredients: Salmon, salmon meal, red lentils, green lentils, sunflower oil (preserved with mixed tocopherols, a source of vitamin E), herring, peas, flaxseed, pea fiber, natural flavors, calcium carbonate, apples, pumpkin, carrots, salt, cottage cheese, dried chicory root extract, ascorbic acid, minerals (zinc proteinate, iron proteinate, manganese proteinate, copper proteinate, calcium iodate), direct fed microbials (dried Lactobacillus acidophilus fermentation product, dried Lactobacillus casei fermentation product, dried Enterococcus faecium fermentation product), vitamins (betaine hydrochloride, vitamin A supplement, niacin supplement, calcium pantothenate, beta carotene, vitamin B12 supplement, vitamin D3 supplement, riboflavin, pyridoxine hydrochloride, thiamine mononitrate, biotin, folic acid), vitamin E supplement, rosemary extract

Fiber (estimated dry matter content) = 4.4%

Red items indicate controversial ingredients

Estimated Nutrient Content
Guaranteed Analysis35%16%NA
Dry Matter Basis39%18%35%
Calorie Weighted Basis33%37%30%
Protein = 33% | Fat = 37% | Carbs = 30%

The first ingredient in this dog food is salmon. Although it is rich in omega-3 fatty acids, raw salmon contains about 80% water. After cooking, most of that moisture is lost, reducing the meat content to just a fraction of its original weight.

After processing, this item would probably account for a smaller part of the total content of the finished product.

The second ingredient is salmon meal. Because it is considered a meat concentrate, fish meal contains almost 300% more protein than fresh fish itself.

Fish meal is typically obtained from the “clean, dried, ground tissue of undecomposed whole fish and fish cuttings” of commercial fish operations.1

We are pleased to note that, unlike many fish meals, this particular item appears2 to be ethoxyquin-free.

The third and fourth ingredients lists lentils. Lentils are a quality source of carbohydrates. Plus (like all legumes) they’re rich in natural fiber.

However, lentils contain about 25% protein, a factor that must be considered when judging the actual meat content of this dog food.

The fifth ingredient is sunflower oil. Sunflower oil is nutritionally similar to safflower oil. Since these oils are high in omega-6 fatty acids and contain no omega-3’s, they’re considered less nutritious than canola or flaxseed oils.

Sunflower oil is notable for its resistance to heat damage during cooking.

There are several different types of sunflower oil, some better than others. Without knowing more, it’s impossible to judge the quality of this ingredient.

The sixth ingredient is herring. Like salmon, herring is typically sourced from clean, undecomposed whole fish and fish cuttings of commercial fish operations.3

Although it is a quality item, raw fish contains about 80% water. After cooking, most of that moisture is lost, reducing the meat content to just a fraction of its original weight.

After processing, this item would probably account for a smaller part of the total content of the finished product.

The seventh ingredient is 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.

The eighth 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 ninth ingredient is pea fiber, a mixture of both soluble and insoluble dietary fiber derived from pea hulls. Aside from the usual benefits of fiber, this agricultural by-product provides no nutritional value to a dog.

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, chicory root 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.

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 also 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.

Innova Prime Grain Free Dog Food
The Bottom Line

Judging by its ingredients alone, Innova Prime Grain Free 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 39%, a fat level of 18% and estimated carbohydrates of about 35%.

As a group, the brand features an average protein content of 40% and a mean fat level of 18%. Together, these figures suggest a carbohydrate content of 34% for the overall product line.

And a fat-to-protein ratio of about 45%.

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

When you consider the protein-boosting effects of the red and green lentils, peas and flaxseed, this still looks like the profile of a kibble containing an above average amount of meat.

Bottom line?

Innova Prime Grain Free is a meat-based kibble using an above average amount of various named meats and meat meals as its main sources of animal protein, thus earning the brand 5 stars.

Enthusiastically recommended.

Please note certain recipes are sometimes given a higher or lower rating based upon our estimate of their total meat content.

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.

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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

02/17/2012 Original review
08/20/2013 Review updated
02/08/2014 Product name change

02/08/2014 Last Update

  1. Association of American Feed Control Officials
  2. Per Innova website, 2/17/2012
  3. Adapted by The Dog Food Advisor from the official definition of fish as published by the Association of American Feed Control Officials
  • Becki

    My American Bulldog has severe food allergies… this is the first food that we have found that doesn’t give him problems. I wish they sold it in larger bags though. If anyone knows of another food that is comparable, I would love to hear about it. I have a hard time finding it locally now, and have to order it on line most of the time.

  • el guapo

    I did my research and chose this brand. Things seemed great until I got the recall notice. Since this in not the first recall, I think I will investigate and choose a more stable brand.

  • Hound Dog Mom

    She’s looking for a low glycemic food – I don’t think a carbohydrated-laden food such as Blue Longevity would fit the bill.

  • Woof

    Blue Buffalo Longevity would also be an excellent choice.

  • CharsDog

    I start feeding my dog the canned Innova Puppy food to put some weight on my dog. While he’s put on a bit of weight, his skin has gotten really flaky. Time to find another dog food.

  • LawofRaw

    Oh but you can win :). Just spend your money on food for your dogs at a good quality and reputable butchers store, meat market and fish markets etc. Easier said than done, if you aren’t sure what I mean. But if you revisit your post above after 3 months, then please ask, and you shall receive….answers and elaboration that is. ūüôā

  • Caitlin

    Another recall, I’m done with this food! P&G ruined this food. My pit seemed okay, but my boston stopped eating it before I got the email on the recall, so it must have been upsetting her stomache. I had to start feeding her something else even before I knew. My sis feeds her dogs this too and she said the same thing, that they stopped eating it a couple weeks ago and she didn’t know why either..till now. Thankfully they are smarter then us and could sense something was wrong with it before it hurt them too badly. My pit is 6 years old so he may have built a better immunity. I’ll still keep a close watch on him though. Anyway, thankfully my local pet store refunded me in full. I’m switching to Nutrisca another low glycemic food for my pit with yeast problems. Based on my research of the company I don’t think I’ll have any more problems with recalls and if I do, it won’t be 3 in one year…geez.

  • emilioaponte

    Innova Prime beff & lamb is one of the favorites of my little wolf. She is eleven years old, three pounds two ounce. Right now she is not enjoying any food with any kind of fish. No Acana Pacifica, no Timberwolf. She don’t eat them anymore. She like food in the beff, buffalo and lamb categories.

  • DougDeGrave

    Any info on the recall?

  • Shih tzu Mom

    I have never heard of sunflower oil or Omega 6, to cause breast cancer. The Omega oils are good especially fish oil. I use Innova it has fish oil which is good.

  • Shih tzu Mom

    To Deuces,
    Always use bottled or filtered water, as faucet water if full of chlorine and contaminants. My boy shih Tzu has been having terrible skin problems. The new vet put him on Simplicef an antibiotic just for skin and it works great, the others from other vet did not. Also, they seem to be allergy related so he gets a half of benedryl 2x a day until it clears up. Yes wash the toys especially if he puts them in his mouth daily. I wash those weekly.
    Also, fish oil is good for the skin, as well as the heart and overall health.

  • they told me my food wasn’t in the range but I had to take my dog in for salmonella poisoning. I highly recommend you throw it out.

  • Dan

    Now this has been recalled as well! I can’t win!

  • Caitlin

    I’ve posted below before on this food 2 months ago when I first tried it. I’ve had great results with my dogs yeasty skin and ears. His neck still has a very slightly red/brown discoloration, but it’s not bright red like it was and there is no itching on his neck or legs or feet. His ears have cleared, his groin yeast spots have cleared. He has one spot on his back thigh that has not cleared; it will look good one day and then the next look terrible again. I need to buy more probiotics b/c I ran out, but he is doing well without them the past couple weeks. The summer will be the real kicker. When it gets hot and humid, that’s when his yeasty skin just goes crazy! I unfortunately live in a humid state. I’ve read vinegar rinses help so I may try that for the summer; I am open for all suggestions though. I’m praying for the best, but I will see. So far so good and so far I’ve seen the best results for my dog with this food. As always, not all dogs will respond the same. OH he also loves the taste of this food the best out of all the others he has had. I feed him the fish formula and he devours it. He gets excited for feeding time and even enjoys a cup in the morning. He never did that before, never wanted to eat in the morning nor waited excidetly for me to prepare his food, and so I used to think he just didn’t have a personality that gets excited for food, but I’ve learned I was clearly wrong. I haven’t tried the other flavors so I can’t comment on them. Overall, I’m just very, extrememly, happy to see him have some relief!!

  • WarJay

    After much research on the net and thanks mainly to this wonderful DogFoodAdvisor site, I am currently using the Prime Grain Free Salmon & Herring, and after experiencing great results with my pet (no more itching, great coat, reasonably-sized bowel movements, etc.), I decided to alternate the next bag with the Grain Free Beef & Lamb Meal. Surprisingly, I could not find the Beef & Lamb Meal for sale by the usual pet food vendors on the internet (except for Amazon), so I went to my local Petco today (3/21). I picked up the only two 12lbs bags left of any of the Beef & Lamb Meal and the lone 33lb bag of the Salmon & Herring, and proceeded to checkout. The clerk’s register was prevented from checking out the dog food to me due to a pop-up notice of these two flavors being recalled. The pop-up notice did not elaborate, but the clerk speculated that because this has been a heavy year for dry dog food recalls, that it was most likely salmonella (?!). *sigh* Back to the drawing board….

    FYI the Chicken & Turkey is still available for purchase.

  • Jerry

    Now that I have some more info I have cooled off a bit, and thankfully the batch I purchased was not in the expiration range of the recalled products. The company’s site is working now and the recall product guide that was created is helpful. Will continue to feed the bag I have but will wait to see the fallout from this event before I consider buying again.

  • Jerry

    …very upset about the recall just issued by Natura…almost fully transitioned to this brand and then find out about potential salmonella. Customer service at Natura was unreachable and obviously not prepared for this. Disgusted.

  • Jerry

    I’m going try this brand’s Beef and Lamb Meal formula next; will be slowly transitioning from Wilderness Small Breed Chicken. I used NV Instinct Beef and Lamb in the past and had bad results (though the company handled it very well and we did much better on their LID Lamb), so I want to give Innova’s recipe a chance. Will let everyone know how it goes.

  • Do not use oatmeal shampoo it feeds yeast! We bought a medicated shampoo it’s been amazing!

  • we had our coonhound on blue buffalo and others! So far innova grain free turkey and chicken works great, we completely cut out people food or anything that would help yeast grow on his skin or in his ears! We also washed him with a Medicated dog shampoo and would give him benadryl and he looks the bet ever! His stomach had no hair on it and was bright red but now he doesn’t lick himself all the time nd all his hair grew back! Yay! Love hounds!

  • Hound Dog Mom

    Actually the original Innova just had a recipe change not too long ago (I think it was back in August or September?).

  • Jacob

    They may be owned by Procter and Gamble, but they have not changed their recipe once since then.

  • Woof1

    Sunflower oil was shown to cause breast cancer in women and it’s full of only Omega 6. It has no Omega 3’s, but 233 parts Omega 6. This is the main ingredient in Innova that makes me hesitate to use it. Does anyone have any opinions on this being on their ingredients list?

  • DeucesDaddy

    Well after surfing many sites and reading different blogs I decided to change just about everything.

    1, Natures Variety Instinct LID & GF
    2. Earthwise Tea Tree Shampoo
    3. 86’d Interceptor (beef flavored) new flavorless from my vet
    4. Ordered a probiotic
    5. Washed his water and food bowls.
    6. Bought new free & clear natural laundry detergent, washed Deuces beds, leash, collar boots and jacket plus my sheets, blankets, towels, and started on my clothes.

    Guess I should consider washing allllll his toys as well………….

    Other than buying a new car, truck and house I think I have things covered. Maybe I will also give him bottled water.

    Please feel free to chime in if you think there’s something I forgot!

  • Hound Dog Mom

    Dr. Becker suggests avoiding oatmeal shampoo if the dog has a yeast infection:

    “Since carbs and
    grains ultimately feed yeast overgrowth, I don’t recommend you use
    oatmeal-based shampoos. Oatmeal is a grain which provides a food source
    for that yeast on your dog’s skin.”

  • Hound Dog Mom

    Innova Prime would certainly be a good food to try. Often these issues clear up when a dog is put on a good quality food low in starches and grain-free with supplemental probiotics and enzymes. However, if I had a dog that was having food intolerance issues (or that I suspected was having food intolerance issues) I would do an elimination diet so I knew which foods caused the issues and which ingredients to avoid in the future. Say I’m feeding a food with chicken, rice, potato and oats and my dog has issues – I then switch to a grain-free free fish based food, add probiotics and enzymes and the issues clear up. Was my dog sensitive to chicken? To rice? To potato? Or possibly gluten that may or may not have been present in the oats? Or was my dog not sensitive to any of the ingredients in the food and just experiencing digestive issues that were cleared up by the enzymes and probiotics?

  • Pattyvaughn

    It truly can be both.  The food can let the microbes in the gut get out of balance(which is why everyone suggests probiotics and digestive enzymes) and then you can end up with yeast overgrowth, which the oatmeal shampoo may feed rather than fight.

  • Hmmm, Dr. Becker might tell you to avoid oatmeal shampoo as well. ¬†

  • DeucesDaddy

    Hey Caitlin,
    Funny you mention Oatmeal. I was using a natural tea tree oil product but the specialist we saw a few weeks ago told me I should only use an Oatmeal shampoo. This is just another thing to confuse the issues we are having.

    How does one know if it’s the food they switched to or the Oatmeal Shampoo they started using at the same time………………………..

    His Coat is nice and shinny but he sheds more than I think he should.

  • Hi DeucesDaddy,

    Your situation has me thinking…. ¬†I have a nine month old Golden pup. ¬†A couple of months after I got home, all of the sudden (or so it seemed) I began realizing how “dirty” his ears were ~ long story short, it was a horrible yeast infection in both ears which was likely the result of vaccinosis from his puppy shots. ¬†The sudden onset of your pups issues makes me wonder if it’s the same thing as mine. ¬†

    I’ll tell you, what I cannot recommend highly enough was what I used ~ Brothers Complete Allergy formula. Sam’s ears were treated and after a couple of trips to the vet, they were spotless and they stayed that way. ¬†I used Mercola digestive enzymes and probiotics along with a meal of Darwin’s raw, but as far as kibbles are concerned, I really believe Brothers (; ¬† is the best. ¬†It truly believe it’s what stabilized Sam and stopped the yeast cycle. ¬† ¬†

    Another thing I’d recommend, is go to this site: ¬† and tell Toxed and Shawna that Betsy sent you. ¬†: ) ¬†They can and will help. ¬†Both are super knowledgeable about situations like yours. ¬† ¬†

  • DeucesDaddy

    Hello M&C,
    He was on Wilderness GF Chicken without issue for just over 1.5 yrs. Since then Natural Balance Sweet Potato Venison but didnt like the quality so switched to Natures Choice Venison and Brown Rice Skin¬†sensitive, Natures Choice LID Lamb and Rice and now the Supermix which seems to be making things worse. I was considering an Innova Prime GF or Instinct LID GF¬†Duck…………..

  • Caitlin

    Him* I’m sorry! Don’t know why I said her! Prego brain! LOL

  • Caitlin

    Hey Deuces,

    I tried Wellness Super5mix too and the same results. The Innova Prime Grain Free has been the best I’ve tried so far. I’m thinking it’s because there are no potatoes in it nor grains. I get the non chicken flavor b/c chicken is known to be an allergen now too.¬†I know there are other (maybe even better) brands out there that are grain free and potatoe free, but Innova is at Petsmart and Petco so it’s easier for me to get a hold of. I also will suggest, if you bath your dog, if her issues are yeast (which most of the time they are) don’t bath her in any oatmeal shampoos. Use a tea tree oil shampoo¬†or a shampoo called Malesabe. You may not be¬†doing that, but in the case you are, it can make their¬†skin condition worse. I learned that one the hard way. Try Probiotics Miracle too,¬†you can see on it gets good reviews and I’ve had good results¬†with it too.¬†Of course not everyone has good results from it, but it’s worth a shot!¬†¬†¬†

  • Melissaandcrew

     Hi Deuces Daddy-

    It often takes weeks to find out if a food is working, but frequently just a few meals to know if its not. If the food is causing him to be worse, I would stop it and try something else. What proteins has he had? Try going with something new, grain free.

  • DeucesDaddy

    Hello BG,

    Thank you for your comments. It seems the Rayne product is high quality when compared to other prescription diets. My main concern with any food is the quality and availability. Unfortunately home cooked or raw are not options as I travel quite a bit (with Deuce of course) so keeping things frozen would be difficult and I don’t always have access to a kitchen. I have read many articles from Dr. Becker on the Mercola website which have been helpful. There is so much information out there and so many different opinions related to food allergy/intolerance and ways to deal with them. I am overwhelmed to say the least! Deuce is my child after all so wanting him to be healthy is my top priority!!

    Since the Rayne product was not available I purchased Wellness Super5mix Fish to try a new/different food/protein but he is much more itchy/licky and its only been a few weeks. Everything I read says 10-12 weeks to really know but if he’s worse this soon shouldn’t I stop feeding him this ?!?!?!?

    I am ordering probiotics from Mercola but still need to find food…………….

  • Hi Deuces Daddy,

    That’s a gorgeous little boy you got there!

    I read about Rayne recently on Susan Thixton’s website. It sounds like a fantastic product ~ Susan recommends it very highly. Do you plan to give it a shot when the protein recommended by your vet is back in stock? Maybe once you order, they’ll continue to allot a certain amount of that particular item for you. I understand they’re able to prepare a completely customized diet based on your dog’s specific nutritional needs.

    Like HDM suggested, it might be time for an elimination diet ~ have patience. : )

    Also, have you thought abut raw? If you’d rather not make your own, I’ve used and would recommend Darwin’s Natural Selections. It ships frozen. All you do is thaw and serve. It’s certainly limited ingredient and it’s free range and organic. Maybe turkey or bison wild be good ones to try.

    HDM suggested probiotics and digestive enzymes. I use and would recommend Mercola:

    Good luck!

  • DeucesDaddy

    Hello HDM and thanx for your comments. I have seen the sites your refer to and they are somewhat helpful. This site (dogfoodadvisor) has been very helpful as well being able to read comments from people with similar issues. Luckily Deuce is still a happy and active kid he just licks and kicks more than he should. He really doesnt have any issues with vomiting and his poops are quality and regular (1 x am & 1 x pm) with a bonus poop maybe once or twice every week or two just to impress me im sure!

    I was thinking about trying an innova grain free product or maybe Natures Varity Instinct LID grain free duck to see if they help/cure the problem. I just want a very high quality dry food thats not a problem to find.

    Any suggestions on a high quality food and digestive supplement would be great!!!!

    We both thank you and anyone else that can help!!

  • Hound Dog Mom

    Hi Deuces Daddy –

    Wow he is a cutie! ūüôā

    Sorry to hear he’s having so many issues!

    If the issues truly are food related the only way to figure out for certain which foods are triggering the symptoms would be to do an elimination diet.

    Here’s some information:

    I’d also get him on a high quality digestive supplement with probiotics and enzymes asap to start strengthening his gut and (ultimately) his immune system..

  • Deuces Daddy

    My kid Deuce is a 27 month old Catahoula the developed allergies about 8 months ago. His symptoms are itchy paws, ears and rear. He was on Wilderness Chicken and Wellness Nut & Honey treats with any problems. In April he got sick while in Colorado and had terrible diarrhea and vomiting and the vet said he picked up some sort of bacteria from runoff which is a common problem from i’ve been told. The meds cleared that up but upon our return to NY I introduced Halo Salmon for variety and that seems to be when the itching started. I removed the Halo but the problem remained. He has been on a steroid a few times which I hate to give him. We have tried Natural Balance Venison and Sweet potato L.I.D., Natures Choice Lamb and Rice L.I.D. Blue Buffalo Basics Grain free turkey L.I.D and now Wellness Supermix fish but nothing seems to help. We have been to a few different Vets and most recent specialist in Florida who worked wonders for my moms Boxer. Even though she said Deuce is probably the best looking dog she will see all week and in her opinion says its food related due to “ears and rears” she suggested I put him on Rayne Kangaroo or Rabbit L.I.D. but they are a super small company that’s been out of the product for the past few weeks and while I am willing to do ANYTHING to remedy Deuces itching, I would prefer to buy him food that’s easily found. It also seems like most of the allergy food prescribed by VETS is not high quality and that’s not something I am willing to feed him. ANY HELP WOULD BE GREAT!!!!

  • Caitlin

    I have an american pit bull who developed yeast issues all over his body when he was 3 1/2. I think it was a reaction to Comfortis that the vet shoved down my throat to give to him for fleas. I stopped it b/c I noticed it made him ill then he broke out with red skin and hot spots on his chest that later spread all over. Anyway, I did find this brand though through research in finding foods with low glycemic ingredients in it. (I bought the blue herring formula) Hopefully if I can keep the sugar down in his body, the yeast will not want to grow as much. I see no change magnificant change in his condition, other then his yeasty ears have completely gone away (he has the cleanest ears now), but also he also has only been on it for a couple of weeks, so i’m hoping the rest of his body will catch up. I just started him on a holistic yeast/fungal detox serum and probiotics too. So he has gotten a tad worse due to his body releasing/ridding all the toxins, but that is starting to look better too. Just hopefully it stays that way, I’ve had¬†my hopes up before only to be dissapointed. Hopefully all of that and the food will fix him. I’ll stick with this food unless I find that it is making him worse.

  • Ashley

    Thank you so much for this review! It answered all the questions I had regarding the ingredients, and helped me to be positive that this was the best choice for our GSD with numerous food allergies, starch sensitivies, and a poor immune system.

  • InkedMarie

    it’s good that you responded; there are always new people popping up!

  • I know that the msg I’m replying to is rather old, but maybe it could still be of help. That message was by Richard Breard about feeding problems with his Shih Tzu (back in August).

    Richard, first thing that I thought of when I read that was “that sounds just like Kassie.” Kassie was one of two Keeshonds I had … she passed over at age 12, a few years back. Anyway, after thinking her fussy and having TONS of digestive upsets, we finally hit on the culprit, she had food allergies and her worst allergy was to beef in any form.

    Talk to your vet about trying an elimination diet to see if an allergen/sensitivity (or several) really is your dog’s problem. Then make sure you educate yourself about the words/ingredients on dog food labels. I know that I personally was floored when I found out what they put in, “so-called” premium dog food under the all purpose term “by-products.” It never dawned on me before that if it was chicken *meat* in any form that they would/could just call it “chicken.” What was by-products then? It turned out that by-products were anything that they couldn’t legally refer to as meat or food. So in the case of the chicken, it could be things like beaks, eyes, feathers, and feet for example. Another of my booboos was corn. We all know that corn is good for us, right? And, it’s in a lot of dog foods. We’re not dogs … and dogs can’t digest corn, they put it in dog food for the same reason they put in by-products … it’s cheap and adds a lot of bulk to the food.

    Oh, a couple of people mentioned having problems switching their dogs over to a new/different food. Remember how you changed their diet when they were little puppies? Same thing, mix a small amount of the new food into their old. Then SLOWLY (3-7 day intervals) increase the amount of the new until they’re totally switched over.

    Sorry that was so long and/or if I repeated something that’s common knowledge here. I just happened upon the site for the first time so I figured I’d jump right in.

  • Anne Wilkes

    This a great site for dog food information but I just wanted to add that cottage cheese in Innova is problematic for my dog and caused colitis. Best advice: know your dog, then read the ingredients.

  • Friends2shelby

     I think they make a California Natural Lamb & Rice that is for adults.  Another choice could be the California Natural Grain Free Lamb.  Perhaps your local supplier could get you some samples for you to try.  Good luck. 

  • mollysmom2

    @Melissaandcrew:disqus¬†They wanted her to eat hill’s low calorie kibble. She gained wt. on the s/d diet due to the high fat content.

  • Melissaandcrew


    What food did they want her to eat? What was the purpose of the food? I would call the vet, explain she will not eat it, and ask what parameters a food must fall within for her medical condition. Once you know what limitations the food must have, its easier to find one.

  • mollysmom2

    Help! my mini schnauzer has just been switched from hills s/d diet for bladder stones and they of course want her to be on another hills food. After reviewing the terrible ingredients and the fact she would not touch the stuff I decided to try the Innova low fat grain free kibble. She has been eating it for 2 days and now all she wants to do is drink lots of water and of course pee all the time she even woke me twice last night/morning to pee and drink more water. This has happened to me before with another food. Any suggestions?

  • BryanV21

    There are a few things you can try…

    1. Add a little warm water, which will not only soften the food but also help bring out the fat (tasty part).

    2. Add some wet/canned food. Dogs rarely will turn their nose up at wet food, so adding a bit may get them interested in eating the kibble.

    3. Natural Balance makes food rolls, which is basically their food with sugar and/or molasses added to it. You can actually grate the rolls like Parmesan cheese on top of the food and mix it in there.

  • Darlene

    No matter how good the food, what do you do when your dog just won’t eat it? ¬†I had shelties and those little guys would scarf down anything! ¬†This little rescue is soooo finicky! ¬†I’ve tried samples of tons of different dog foods and she will only eat California Natural Puppy Lamb & Rice. ¬†She just turned a year and she needs to switch, but she HATES everything I bring home! ¬†Help!

  • Mellydawn1989

    Just found this site and I’m so thankful for it! I’ve been searching for good dog food for my 3 diggies for awhile. Have not found anything that is rated as ‘healthy’ but also that they are enthusiastic about eating… Until this one! Innova, salmon, was a hit with my dogs. All 3 tore into their bowls. I’m sure the faint scent of fish smell appeals to them, but I was thrilled to find a healthy choice they enjoy. And I would have been very hesitant to spend this much without a great review…. So thanks for the assistance!

  • You can rotate between foods. Sometimes feeding one food long term can increase the chances of building up a food intolerance.¬† Also kibbles aren’t the best foods out there.¬† Rotating will help to ensure you don’t get too much¬†from one brand or not enough from one brand.

  • Dzloquito

    I have an English bulldog puppy so now I’m between innova, merrik, Evo I need help everything else looks like they had problems ..

  • David5436

    My dog Max is an extremely picky eater.¬† I had him on KibbleNBits for 4 years.¬† I finally educated myself about dog nutrition and I’ve managed to find three high¬†quality brands that he likes.¬† They are Acana, Solid Gold, and Merrick Classic.¬† His favorite is Merrick.¬† That food smells good that I would eat it :).¬† They all are pretty expensive but they are worth it.

  • Richard J Breard

    Tried a bag of of the beef and lamb for my Shih Tzu. Vomit, vomit, diarrhea, diarrhea, diarrhea. Back to Pinnacle Peak and Earthborn which she is not crazy about either. At wits end. Don’t know what else to try on this picky dog!

  • Pomeranian pup

    Great! Thanks so much to both of you. I got Orijen this time around, we’ll see how he does on it.

  • You might also consider Amicus for toy breeds.¬† It is similar to Innova Prime but slightly lower in protein.¬† Amicus is¬†made by Horizon which also makes Horizon Legacy and Pulsar. ¬†I haven’t used Orijen in a couple years.

  • Hound Dog Mom

    Hi Pomeranian pup,

    I’d hands down go with Orijen. Innova is an okay food but it’s owned by Proctor & Gamble (the same company that owns Iams and Eukanuba) and I don’t believe their ingredients are as high quality as Orijen’s.

  • Pomeranian pup

    Hi, I have a three month old Pomeranian and am debating of switching him between orijen or innova. Any advice?

  • Hound Lover

    Mike, What do you think about the Missing Link supplement?

  • Hound Lover

    Hi Dave. Ours are rescues from ABTCR too! 2 B&T’s, a redbone and a bluetick.¬† I also foster for them.¬† Great rescue group!¬† I have never heard of the Primal that you mentioned, but I will check it out! Thanks.

  • Dave’s Hounds

     Hi hound lover РI have two coonhounds Рboth rescues from AB&TCA. Mine eat canned ziwipeak, Primal freeze dried and they get 1/2 cup of Brothers grain free white meat in am.

  • Hound Lover

    We have 4 coonhounds. Not hunting dogs, all rescues and we adore them.  Two of them constently suffer from ear and skin problems.  We started with Avoderm, gave them gorgeous coats, but itched all the time. Swithced to Blue Buffalo and they had major stomach problems.  Switched to TOTW stomach was better, but skin and ear issues remined.  Now on Innova prime grain free, and it is amazing. No issues whatsoever. I also add yougurt and sprinkle with The Missing Link several times a week.  Love this food. But it is very expensive, and with 4 dogs!  Seriously, they are going to have to get jobs soon.

  • Tizmerenee

    My 5 year old german shepherd who suffers from EPI and hasn’t done well on kibble in the past is doing amazing on the innova prime chicken . He gained his weight back quickly , sheds less, coats soft and shinny and his alergys seem to be a lot less bothersome . I am very impressed if you like more info on epi joing my page onn facebook PETS WITH EPI

  • Redbox130

    Oh i see! Thanks. That cleared it up for me. =) 

  • Hound Dog Mom

    Innova Prime is labeled for all lifestages, meaning it means nutrient requirements for both adults and puppies. However, if you have a large breed puppy I wouldn’t recommend it as the calcium level is on the high side.

  • Redbox130

    I’m quite curious.. One of the tags for this dog food is puppy. Does that mean that dogs under 1 yr of age can eat this as well? Even though it’s labeled for adults?

  • Guest1234123

    You may have done this, but make sure that you are introducing new food gradually and not all of a sudden as that could be why he’s having problems with new foods.

  • Shawna

    I agree with the others..  Protein is not the culprit in cats or dogs..  They actually have new studies (for over 10 years now) that disprove protein as a cause of kd in dogs..  In fact, they found that restricting protein did more harm then good.  Phosphorus however can be problematic but phos is in a lot of foods.

    My dog was born with kd showing symptoms at just 6 weeks of age.¬† She will be 6 years old in 4 days and is in wonderful health.¬† She has been on a high protein raw dit since weaning — she gets a rotation of commercial and home prepared foods ranging from about 45 to 54 percent protein..¬†

    Dehydration, medications, bacteria plus can actually cause kd..  They are even suspecting vaccinations as a common cause in cats. 

    “‚ÄúThe vaccine companies are doing a great job making pure and effi cacious vaccines,‚ÄĚ said Dr. Lappin. ‚ÄúHowever, when FVRCP vaccines are made, each dose is contaminated with just a little bit of cell culture. What we discovered recently was that cats not only develop antibodies to the viruses in the vaccine, which is our intent, but they also develop antibodies to the cell culture ‚Äď a culture based on a feline kidney cell line. And that‚Äôs where we have to begin to ask some very intriguing questions. In particular, is it possible that overvaccination induces antibodies that are associated with immune-mediated feline kidney disease?‚ÄĚ”¬† ¬†

  • Marie

    ¬†Most commercial foods don’t ‘overdose’ a dog on protein because protein is expensive and they know a dog requires considerably less protein to survive than a cat.

    Dogs are not more omnivorous than cats – cats are plain NOT omnivorous at all. They are obligate carnivores, and they have no dietary requirement for vegetation. Short of some kind of crazy genetic disorder, protein cannot harm a cat’s kidneys and renal system – that’s a myth long since debunked. Inappropriate sources of protein, such as incomplete *plant-based* proteins can hurt a cat; that combined with a COMPLETELY inappropriate formulation (ie: dry food) lacking moisture is what causes kidney issues in cats. Not meat, which they are specifically designed to eat of exclusively.

    You see peas, lentils, pumpkin and other such things in dog food NOT because a dog needs them but because the commercial pet food company needs a starch binder to be able to make kibble.

    Most vets know little about nutrition.

  • monkey

    A lot of cats are prone to kidney problems because some are only fed dry food. It is important for cats to eat a wet food diet.

  • Thesilentcrow

    ¬†It does but most commercial dog foods don’t overdose a dog on protein.¬† Cats are prone to kidney failure and renal disease because of their extremely high protein diets, but they actually require considerably more protein than dogs (most people fear higher protein for their dogs because of what they’ve heard it does to cats).¬† Dogs are more omnivorous than cats and the commercial diets take care of that.¬† You see peas, lentils, pumpkin, etc in a “grain free” dog food because dogs need other sources of food than just meat.¬† These high fiber plants in the foods fill the dog up without providing excessive amounts of protein that could damage the body’s system.¬† Yes the commerical Innova Prime brand food is high in protein, but no it is not too much.¬† Dogs digest protein to produce hair, nails, muscle, etc so a slightly higher amount of protein than what you’d get in say Iams brand, is ok and the dog is likely to digest it and put it to use without kidney damage.¬† Always though, if you want to switch to a higher protein diet, check with your vet and get all the information you can.¬† Every dog is different and some may not need a higher protein diet.

  • Toxed2loss

    Hi Pree,
    I looked at both and the things they have in common are rice and barley. Senior foods are often lower in meat protein and research says that unless they have certain conditions, lower protein is not good for seniors. The grains will give him gas and loose stools. Dog digestive systems don’t produce the necessary enzymes for digesting grains. They have no real dietary need for carbs. Your dog will do better on a food that is higher in meat based protein and moderate in balanced fat. There are several which are widely recommended. I favor Brother’s Complete. I think the encapsulated probiotics will be an important factor for boosting your rescue’s immune system. ūüôā

  • Pree

    Hi I need help I adopted a 8 yr old beagle from the shelter. I have been feeding him nutro natural choice senior dog food until I read the reviews on this website. I tried to switch him to wellness super5mix senior food he had bad bad gas and loose stool with it. I put him back on nutro natural choice but I am desperately looking for a better dog food I also tried blue buffalo senior food that too did not work for him loose stool and gas. Need help in deciding what else dog food should I try for my pup.

  • awesome post man thanks for share ūüôā

  • Shawna

    Hi Mistydaqwnbain ~~ Mimi (the fat Papillon) was fed a variety of commercially prepared raw foods.¬† I use Bravo Balance, Primal (rabbit and venison — at the time of the weight loss I was also using Primals duck, turkey/sardine, pheasant and quail varieties as well), Bravo buffalo, salmon and venison (which are meat only) with Steve Brown’s premix or Honest Kitchen’s Preference premix (1 to 1 ratio).¬† I would also buy lean turkey and lean hamburger from Trader Joes and combine with one of the premixes..¬†

    Here are before and after pictures of Miss Mimi ūüôā

  • Mistydawnbain

    What specific diet do you follow that you were able achieve those great weight loss results. I have a lab border collie mix with an under active thyroid and I need some advice on a good diet for her. She needs to lose around 15 pounds.


  • I get chicken feet pretty cheap – about 2 dozen for less than $5.¬† Great for making stock or simmering in a crock pot.¬† Although I do neither, I just give it to the pugs to gnaw and eat, although I¬† might try it.¬† Bought 2 more bags of feet.

  • Meetsy,¬† I love this idea, am going to do it for our three dogs, they will love it, especially the marrow bones, great tip!!!¬† thanks.

  • daisy1999

    Speaking of “concise”.¬† Well, I got called a dog food manufacturer for being to scientific.¬† So, I was trying to be more “everyday speaking”.¬† But, the other week I was posting at some odd hr., I have sleep probs, and someone came on and basically accused me of being a moron, saying I flunked 4th grade grammar, and had no business giving advice to anyone.¬† Thank goodness Addie popped on to my rescue.¬† It was the only post the person ever made then they deleted their profile.¬† So, now I am paranoid about how the heck to say things.

  • daisy1999

    My 2 fosters that I adopted were and are NAUGHTY and I kept them for the same reason.¬† Prince, I actually adopted out, after working long and hard to make him a sweet little boy (he was a do not adopt due to biting at the shelter).¬† He never bit anyone after coming with me, and went with those people and wouldn’t stop biting them!¬† Wanted to be returned to his “mommy”.¬†

  • Shawna

    Yeah!! ūüôā¬† I’ve been “called out” before on something (because I was trying to be concise) so I’ve gotten in the habit of adding everything I can think of…

    We ended up adopting our fat Papillon.¬† She would start dog fights and would bite if she didn’t get her way.¬†¬†We were afraid she¬†might¬†be euthanized at some point if we didn’t adopt her.. ūüôĀ¬† She was NAUGHTY!!!

  • daisy1999

    Have you noticed we both write “books” for posts ūüėȬ† I can’t help it.¬† I just don’t want to forget something.¬† I had a Papillon foster.¬† OMG-the dearest thing ever!¬† Her owners dropped her at a shelter at age 13 because she was blind.¬† She knew her way around my house and yard in 24hrs!¬† And, knew more tricks than any dog I ever had.¬† Once my son figured out she knew them, she was so excited to show them off she would lets out this “woo-woo” everytime she got to show off.¬† A wonderful woman adopted her and gave her a 2nd chance-PEOPLE!

  • Shawna

    Yeah, like Daisy mentions — not problematic for all dogs but can have horrible consequences for those that are sensitive.¬† Problem is, the pup can be eating them for months (or longer) sometimes before the sensitivity may become evident..¬† Just depends on the animal..

    A really good way to achieve weight reduction is to feed a high protein diet, moderate fat and low carb..¬† I’m a raw feeder so this is easier for me then a kibble feeder — but I was able to take 15 pounds off a 29 pound foster Papillon by feeding high protein / low carb.¬† Awesome side effects of such a diet are — even better coat quality, excellent muscle tone etc…

    In addition to lectins — Per Dr. Karen Becker – too much “fiber”, which green beans are high in, can actually prevent other nutrients from being absorbed..¬† Green beans are definitely a good way to get some weight off but¬†at what expense to the rest of the body when fed long term and in excess amounts??

  • daisy1999

    I tried this also.¬† It does work if your dogs aren’t sensitive.¬† I have one that is.¬† And while he did gobble them up-he got quite ill.

  • VinUnleaded1962

    Funny you should mention Green Beans, my wife read somewhere to put Greenbeans in my other Huskys Food for weight reduction…it worked….but now I wonder if its doingmore harm in the long run?
    The Husky with the vomiting wont eat the green beans, so we dont give them to him.

  • Shawna

    Potato has a protein in them called a lectin.¬† Lectins can be VERY damaging to the digestive tract of humans and animals that are sensitive.¬† Good that you identified the cause..¬† Long term exposure to a lectin (that is causing issues) can eventually result in leaky gut and then autoimmune diseases—-once in the bloodstream, the lectins bind with organs and the immune system attacks the organ that the lectins have¬†attached to¬†:(.

    Lots of foods have lectins but the most damaging ones seem to be in grains, legumes (including soy and green beans), nightshade plants (potatoes (and to a lesser degree tomatoes, peppers, eggplants)) and dairy.  Usually one (pet or person) is not reactive to lectins in every food..  Grains, however, have another set of problems..

    In my opinion, good quality potato and grain free foods to look at are Nature’s Variety Instinct and Brothers Complete.¬† Both use tapioca (which also contains lectins but seems to be far less of an issue then the others).¬†

    GOOD LUCK!!! 

  • VinUnleaded1962

    Meant to say the Greenies and the potato in BW was causing the vomiting.

  • VinUnleaded1962

    Thanks for the responses…I am going nuts trying to find a dry dog food for my 2 Siberian huskys.
    We started 2 years ago with Solid Gold but then switched to Blue Wilderness both wet and dry.
    One of the 2 has been throwing up about once a week, but goes sometimes several weeks ok.
    We determined that “Greenies” as well as the potato in Blue Wilderness.
    Just ordered my Newmans Own Wet food but still need dry food.

  • Shawna

    I ADORE Dr. Becker!!  A HUGE fan!!!!  But, I have to agree with you VinUnleaded1962..  I was discouraged to see the ingredients in some of the products endorsed by Dr Becker on the Mercola site. 

    I also know that she is not opposed to peas per se¬†as she uses them as treats for her Pitties and Boston Terrier — one pea that is.¬† As a filler they are, of course, not species appropriate.

  • I like her other products:

    These aren’t affiliated with Mercola.¬† I get the Solutions Bites.

  • VinUnleaded1962

    Then WHY does Dr Becker ENDORSE dog treats containing the very things you say she says are not digestible! And other BAD ingredients.
    Her product she endorses contains Pea Powder, Rice Powder, Peppermint Oil, Citric Acid, Carrageenan.
    Please read the label tab:,467.htm

  • SpeciesAppropriateFoodsOnly

    I want to draw out Dr. Karen Becker. She is a very knowledgeable holistic vet who specializes in nutrition.  Anything Pea based, Pea Fibers, Flours, etc are listed by her as not digestible by cats or dogs. She also lists Flaxseed as not digestible and states that companies are turning to these ingredients as cheap fillers that look attractive to us as consumers, but are very bad for our canine friends.

  • Debbie Brennan

    My Dog just LOVES this food. Especially the Salmon & Herring Formula.

  • Marsha

    The industry is finding that soy does remove vitamins and minerals from the body. Even when you try to replace them with a multivitamin it removes them too. Soy is not a good product for human or dog.

  • Ginger-Snips Pets

    Check out  It is a food suppliment with 100% money back guarantee. All my dogs (4) take it.  Helps digestive issues, allergy problems, skin issues.  My 17 yr old choc. lab really made a turn around 5 yrs ago when I started giving it to her.  Also, she has a wheat allergy so I give her Innova Senior Plus. (check ingred. for poultry).  They have some great food and it is made in the US with US indred.  Wheat is the most common food allergy in dogs. (I am a groomer and see alot of dogs with issues and many of my clients & both my sisters also use NuVet with excellent results.  Best of luck with your dog. Ginger-Snips

  • Meetsy

    ¬†I keep a crockpot going on the counter, and put in beef bones (marrow) and various meats, vegetables, and whatever kitchen scraps we have (trimmings, peels, etc. including apples, and other fruit).¬† Occasionally I add eggs, and all grain-free food scraps go into this pot. This crockpot is heated to high every day for 2 hours, but the rest of the time is on the “keep warm” setting.¬†¬† I spoon this over the kibble. As it is an ever changing bunch of flavors, so the dogs never lose interest in their kibble.¬† I also routinely add yogurt, cottage cheese, buttermilk, or grated cheese to the kibble.¬†¬† (not all at once, just a variety, as the mood hits).¬†¬†¬†¬† My oldest dog is 18 years old. They’re all very healthy.¬†¬† One dog has severe allergies to all grains, and she is thriving on this variation.¬†¬† The other plus, is that when you add the hot broth, and let it cool, the dry food expands, which, from what I’ve read, can help prevent bloat.

  • Infusion

    My dog has food allergies – so far, we’ve discovered that she cannot tolerate birds (turkey, chicken, duck) or venison.¬† She used to eat Honest Kitchen Zeal (we added fresh salmon) but recently has refused to eat this because she’s probably tired of it.¬† We tried feeding her the fish version of Nutrica dry dog food¬†and she had soft stools.¬† We were thinking of trying the Innova Prime fish¬†dry dog food next – has anyone else had problems feeding dry dog food to dogs with food allergies?¬† We plan to try a raw food diet next, but need to get her stabilized on something first.

  • Tizmerenee

    The innova prime chicken is amazing ……grainfree and potatoe free . My german shepherd who has epi and is picky loves the kibble and its reasonably priced. My dog got rhe runs from taste of wild and he hated it.

  • Tizmerenee

    My german shepherd Tango has EPI and we tryd several different types of kibble and none worked for us . The lowest weight was 52 lbs. Well I started him on Nature variety raw and it worked wonders however it got really expensive because the 16 oz they say to feed is unrealistic he needed 32 oz a day. So I needed to give kibble a shot again so I could cut down on the raw. Well I heard about innova prime chicken and I started Tango on without transition and he not only never got sick or had loose poo but he also gained 2 lbs in a week. His stool volume is so small it looks like it comes from a dachshund ! Not like before where it looked like it came from a great dane. I am sold on innova prime and nature variety I hope they don’t change the way they make it !

  • LabsRawesome

    Hi D’Arla C.¬† 4health is only available at Tractor Supply, it is their own brand. I agree, soy is terrible.

  • Johnandchristo

    D’Arla C.

    I read that soy is really bad for labs. I’m with you they should ban it.

  • Shawna

    Thanks D’Arla C. ~~ I’m so sorry you lost your Bulldog but very glad that your other two pulled through and are back to good health!!!¬†

    It saddens me that we have to warn each other about ingredients in our dogs food (as well as our own food).¬† We should be able to by health promoting foods without giving it a second thought… ūüôĀ¬† Oh well, at least we have avenues like this site that we can discuss such topics!! ūüôā

    Pits are my favorite breed — especially Staffies (grew up with one :)..¬† I’m intrigued by wolf hybrids too..¬† We lived next door to a family that had one but I was too young to really appreciate him…¬† I remember he was beautiful though!!!

  • D’Arla C.

    Have you tried 4 Health? I believe it comes in a canned variety which your smaller dogs may find more palatable, if you prefer to buy dry-buy the smallest bag the store carries.
    I purchase mine at Tractor Suppply ’cause it is less expensive there and I have 2 quite large dogs!

  • D’Arla C.

    Thank You so much for trying to explain to everyone just hoe BAD Soy is for your beloved dogs!
    We nearly lost our Wolf Hybrid due to ignorance on our part for not knowing just how deadly soy is to certain breeds-Pit Bulls and Boxers are also very sensitive to soy! Our Pit/Boxer Mix became very sick when our Wolf Hybrid did and we lost our Purebred English Bulldog!
    After several costly trips to the Veterinarian, our remaining 2 dogs are now fine and back on 4 Health and gaining their weight back and back to being playful and not lethargic and no longer have diarrhea!
    Soy should be banned in pet Foods!
    Again, Thank You for trying to warn people not to feed soy containing foods to their beloved dogs!

  • Shawna

    I would disagree that soy is a good protein for humans or dogs.¬† Yes it has all necessary¬†amino acids¬†but there’s a but.. ūüôā

    The amino acids from proteins are used by the body for making everything from enzymes to repairing damaged tissue.¬† The body uses those amino acids in grouping — example (cystine and glutamin are used to make glutathione (an antioxidant)).¬† The ability of the body to utilize ALL the amino acids present in the food is called the foods biological value (bv) or bioavailability.¬† Egg protein is considered 100% bioavailable — all the amino acids are used by the body leaving none to waste and supplying lots of the building blocks the body uses.¬†¬†¬† I’m going from memory so my numbers will be a bit off — Beef has about a 93% bv and fish about the same.¬† Chicken is in the 80’s if memory servers.¬† While soy is in the low 60s – 63 I think.¬† So even though soy has all the essential amino acids, they are not in a form that is highly utilizable (bv) — 37% of the amino acids must be filtered out of the body by the kidneys.¬† Some vets feel that putting an extra strain on the kidneys like that — with time can contribute to damaged kidneys.

    The other bad guys in soybeans — they have a protein called a lectin (all legumes and many other foods do).¬† Soybean lectins are particularly virulent and problematic and can cause leaky gut and autoimmune diseases if leaked through into the blood.¬† They can also damage the “villi” which digest nutrients causing malnutrition.¬†

    Soybeans have antinutrients like phytates and enzyme inhibitors that make the other foods (especially proteins) in the diet harder to digest.  Causing more work for the digestive tract and body.

    Ohhh, soy is VERY high in the amino acids glutamic and aspartic acid..¬† When freed (which cooking does to a degree) these amino acids can become excitotoxic like MSG —¬†(MSG is nothing more then sodium and freed glutamic acid)….

    Avoid the soy ūüôā

    A better option for making treats in my opinion is coconut flour….

  •¬†< whats your take on this website claims that soy is one of the best proteins, assuming its organic and not laced with roundup herbicide ?

  • LabsRawesome

    ¬†Hi Minpinpeaches, add some canned dog food, or tripe to their kibble. That should get those picky dogs eating. ūüôā

  • My dogs have eaten Natures Variety Instinct, Core Ocean, Great Life Grain Free, Nutrisca Salmon, Amicus, and Brothers Complete.

  • Minpinpeaches

    Hi I asked this question a few months back in another chat area and I am looking for some opinions. I have recently went to Grain Free food for my Dogs. i have two Doxie’s and a Chihuhua Puppy. They HATED the Taste Of The Wild. I then¬†tried the Blue Buffalo Wilderness that everyone was raving how their dogs LOVED it I have tried the Salmon and Duck and my dogs will not eat it!!! Any suggestions to a food that is grain free and TASTE wonderful to picky dogs? LOL¬† Thanks in advance for any help!

  • Shawna

    Actually it is just the opposite :)..¬† A diet too low in protein is now known to be more problematic then a diet too high in “quality” protein (meats are higher quality then grains as an example).¬†

    I have a dog with kidney disease (born with the disease) that has been on a HIGH protein raw diet since weaning.  She is very healthy and will be 6 years old the end of June.

    Do read the article Rheseyj mentions!!

    PS — kibble in and of itself is hard on the kidneys as kibble is dehydrating which causes an additional workload on the kidneys.

  • Rheseyj

    No Erik ,

    Read the article on this website Suggested Low Protien foods

  • Jenny_1225

    They are now owned by procter and gamble which worries me.

  • Chip1001

    It sounds like Back To Basics Turkey would be right up your alley.I feed this in rotation with Orijen and Acana and my Beagle does great with it.

  • Back to Basics (5), Avoderm Revolving Menu (4), Instinct LID Turkey (4), Grandma Lucy’s Pureformance doesn’t have turkey but has other single proteins (5).

  • Boxers1

    I am looking for a 5 star grain free turkey based diet for adult Boxers. Any suggestions/ I see many with multiple protein sources (chicken and turkey and salmon) for example but not just turkey
    Thanks so much

  • Erik

    Isn’t too much protein unhealthy for dogs?¬† I thought it put too much stress on their kidneys.

  • Hi Omar,

    Yes. You make a good point. Lentils (like most all legumes) contain about 25% dry matter protein.

    However, since meat contains about 70% protein and due to their relative positions on the ingredients list, this product still appears to consist of an above-average amount of meat.

  • I like how this food reads. Could the lentils have increased the amount of protein in this food?