Lotus Dog Food Review (Dry)

Rating:

Lotus Dog Food receives the Advisor’s second-highest tier rating of 4.5 stars.

The Lotus product line includes the 6 dry dog foods listed below.

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

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

Lotus Good Grains Chicken and Brown Rice Recipe was selected to represent the other products in the line for this review.

Lotus Good Grains Chicken and Brown Rice Recipe

Dry Dog Food

Estimated Dry Matter Nutrient Content

Protein = 27% | Fat = 12% | Carbs = 53%

Ingredients: Chicken, chicken meal, rye, brown rice, barley, oats, white fish, chicken fat preserved with mixed tocopherols and citric acid, pea fiber, ground flaxseed, dried egg product, brewers dried yeast, calcium propionate, carrots, sweet potatoes, apples, blueberries, pumpkin, spinach, potassium chloride, salmon oil, olive oil, salt, garlic, l-ascorbyl-2-polyphosphate, zinc proteinate, iron proteinate, calcium carbonate, vitamin E supplement, copper proteinate, manganese proteinate, niacin, vitamin A supplement, calcium pantothenate, Yucca schidigera extract, dried kelp, inulin, dried Lactobacillus acidophilus fermentation product, riboflavin supplement, thiamine mononitrate, vitamin B supplement, pyridoxine hydrochloride, calcium iodate, vitamin D supplement, folic acid, sodium selenite, rosemary extract

Fiber (estimated dry matter content) = 3.9%

Red denotes controversial item

Estimated Nutrient Content
MethodProteinFatCarbs
Guaranteed Analysis24%11%NA
Dry Matter Basis27%12%53%
Calorie Weighted Basis24%27%49%
Protein = 24% | Fat = 27% | Carbs = 49%

The first ingredient in this dog food is chicken. Although it is a quality item, raw chicken contains up to 73% 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 chicken meal. Chicken meal is considered a meat concentrate and contains nearly 300% more protein than fresh chicken.

The third ingredient is rye, a cereal grain nutritionally similar to barley.

The next ingredient is brown rice, a complex carbohydrate that (once cooked) can be fairly easy to digest. However, aside from its natural energy content, rice is of only modest nutritional value to a dog.

The fifth ingredient is barley. Barley is a starchy carbohydrate supplying fiber and other healthy nutrients. However, aside from its energy content, this cereal grain is of only modest nutritional value to a dog.

The sixth ingredient includes oats. Oats are rich in B-vitamins, minerals and dietary fiber.

The seventh ingredient is whitefish, a marine or freshwater species native to Canada and the California coast. This item is inclusive of moisture. After processing, this item would probably account for a smaller part of the total content of the finished product.

The next 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.

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 other nutritional value to a dog.

From here, the list goes on to include a number of other items.

But realistically, ingredients located this far down the list (other than nutritional supplements) are not likely to affect the overall rating of this Lotus product.

With 7 notable exceptions

First, brewers yeast can be a controversial item. Although it’s a by-product of the beer making process, this ingredient is rich in minerals and other healthy nutrients.

Fans believe yeast repels fleas and supports the immune system.

Critics argue yeast ingredients can be linked to allergies. This may be true, but (like all allergies) only if your particular dog is allergic to the yeast itself.

In addition, a vocal minority insists yeast can increase the risk of developing the life-threatening condition known as bloat. However, this is a claim we’ve not been able to scientifically verify.

In any case, unless your dog is specifically allergic to it, yeast can still be considered a nutritious additive.

What’s more noteworthy here is that brewers yeast contains about 48% protein, a factor that must be considered when judging the actual meat content of this dog food.

Next, we note the use of 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.

We also find dried egg product, a dehydrated 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.

In addition, salmon oil is naturally rich in the prized EPA and DHA type of omega-3 fatty acids. These two high quality fats boast the highest bio-availability to dogs and humans.

Depending on its level of freshness and purity, salmon oil should be considered a commendable addition.

Garlic can also be a controversial item. Although many favor the ingredient for its claimed health benefits, garlic has been linked to Heinz body anemia in dogs.1

So, one must weigh the potential benefits of feeding garlic against its proven tendency to cause subclinical damage to the red blood cells of the animal.

Additionally, we note the inclusion of inulin, a starch-like compound made up of repeating units of carbohydrates and typically sourced from chicory root.

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.

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.

Lotus Dog Food Review

Just by looking at its ingredient panel, Lotus Dog Food looks like an above-average dry product.

The dashboard displays a dry matter protein reading of 27%, a fat level of 12% and estimated carbohydrates of about 53%.

As a group, the brand features an average protein content of 26% and a mean fat level of 13%. Together, these figures suggest a carbohydrate content of 53% for the overall product line.

And a fat-to-protein ratio of about 52%.

Which means this Lotus product line contains…

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

Even when you consider the protein-boosting effect of the brewers yeast and flaxseed, this looks like the profile of a kibble containing a moderate amount of meat.

Bottom line?

Lotus is a grain-inclusive baked dog food using a moderate amount of named meats and meals as its dominant source of animal protein, thus receiving 4.5 stars.

Highly recommended.

Lotus Dog Food
Recall History

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

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.

However, we do receive a referral fee from online retailers (like Chewy or Amazon) when readers click over to their website from ours. This policy helps support the operation of our blog and keeps access to all our content free to the public.

For more information, please visit our Disclaimer and Disclosure page.

Important FDA Alert

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

Notes and Updates

  1. Yamato et al, Heinz Body hemolytic anemia with eccentrocytosis from ingestion of Chinese chive (Allium tuberosum) and garlic (Allium sativum) in a dog, Journal of the American Animal Hospital Association 41:68-73 (2005)

05/22/2020 Last Update