Review of Instinct Limited Ingredient Diet Canned Dog Food
Instinct Limited Ingredient Diet canned dog food receives the Advisor’s top rating of 5 stars.
The Instinct Limited Ingredient Diet 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.
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|Instinct Limited Ingredient Diet Real Rabbit Recipe||5||M|
|Instinct Limited Ingredient Diet Real Turkey Recipe||5||M|
|Instinct Limited Ingredient Diet Real Lamb Recipe||3.5||M|
Recipe and Label Analysis
Instinct Limited Ingredient Diet Real Turkey Recipe 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.
Instinct Limited Ingredient Diet Real Turkey Recipe
Canned Dog Food
Estimated Dry Matter Nutrient Content
Ingredients: Turkey, turkey broth, turkey liver, peas, pea protein, montmorillonite clay, potassium chloride, minerals (zinc proteinate, iron proteinate, copper proteinate, manganese proteinate, sodium selenite, cobalt proteinate, potassium iodide), salt, choline chloride, vitamins (vitamin E supplement, thiamine mononitrate, niacin supplement, d-calcium pantothenate, vitamin A supplement, riboflavin supplement, biotin, vitamin B12 supplement, pyridoxine hydrochloride, vitamin D3 supplement, folic acid), l-ascorbyl-2-polyphosphate
Fiber (estimated dry matter content) = 8.3%
Red denotes controversial item
|Estimated Nutrient Content|
|Dry Matter Basis||48%||31%||13%|
|Calorie Weighted Basis||35%||56%||9%|
The first ingredient in this dog food is turkey. Turkey is considered “the clean combination of flesh and skin… derived from the parts or whole carcasses of turkey”.1
Turkey is naturally rich in the ten essential amino acids required by a dog to sustain life.
The second ingredient is turkey broth. Broths are of only modest nutritional value. Yet because they add both flavor and moisture to a dog food, they are a common component in many canned products.
The third ingredient is turkey liver, an organ meat sourced from a named animal and thus considered a beneficial component.
The fourth ingredient includes 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 fifth 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.
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 Nature’s Variety product.
With 2 notable exceptions…
First, we find montmorillonite clay, a naturally occurring compound rich in many trace minerals. Montmorillonite has been approved for use in USDA Organic Certified products.
Reported benefits include the binding of certain mold-based toxins and even controlling diarrhea and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).
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.
Based on its ingredients alone, Instinct Limited Ingredient Diet canned dog food looks like an above-average wet product.
As a group, the brand features an average protein content of 45% and a mean fat level of 27%. Together, these figures suggest a carbohydrate content of 20% for the overall product line.
And a fat-to-protein ratio of about 59%.
Which means this Instinct product line contains…
Above-average protein. Above-average fat. And below-average carbs when compared to a typical canned dog food.
Even when you consider the protein-boosting effect of the pea products, this looks like the profile of a canned dog food containing a significant amount of meat.
Our Rating of Instinct Limited Ingredient Diet Canned Dog Food
Instinct Limited Ingredient Diet is a grain-free canned dog food using a significant amount of named meats as its dominant source of animal protein, thus earning the brand 5 stars.
Has Nature’s Variety Dog Food Been Recalled?
The following automated list (if present) includes all dog food recalls since 2009 related to Nature’s Variety.
- Nature’s Variety Instinct Dog Food Recall of July 2015 (7/24/2015)
- Nature’s Variety Dog Food Recall February 2013 (2/15/2013)
- Nature’s Variety Dog Food Recall July 2012 (7/12/2012)
- Nature’s Variety Dog Food Recall March 2010 (3/9/2010)
- Nature’s Variety Dog Food Recall February 2010 (2/14/2010)
You can view a complete list of all dog food recalls since 2009 here.
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More Nature’s Variety Reviews
The following Nature’s Variety dog food reviews are also posted on this website:
- Instinct Be Natural Dog Food Review (Dry)
- Instinct Dog Food Review
- Instinct Limited Ingredient Diet Dog Food Review (Dry)
- Instinct Original Dog Food Review (Canned)
- Instinct Raw Boost Dog Food Review (Dry)
- Instinct Raw Frozen Diets Dog Food Review (Raw Frozen)
- Instinct Ultimate Protein Dog Food Review (Dry)
A Final Word
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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.
- Adapted by the Dog Food Advisor and based upon the official definition for chicken published by the Association of American Feed Control Officials, Official Publication, 2008 Edition ↩
01/11/2021 Last Update