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Northwest Naturals Dog Food Review (Raw Frozen)

Northwest Naturals Chicken Raw Diet Dog Food

Review of Northwest Naturals Raw Frozen Dog Food

Rating:

Northwest Naturals Raw Dog Food receives the Advisor’s top rating of 5 stars.

The Northwest Naturals product line includes the 9 frozen raw dog foods listed below.

Each recipe includes its AAFCO nutrient profile when available… Growth (puppy), Maintenance (adult), All Life Stages, Supplemental or Unspecified.

The products are available as either Chubs, Dinner Bars and/or Nuggets.

Product Rating AAFCO
Northwest Naturals Beef 4.5 A
Northwest Naturals Beef and Trout 1.5 A
Northwest Naturals Bison and Beef 4.5 A
Northwest Naturals Chicken 5 A
Northwest Naturals Chicken and Salmon 5 A
Northwest Naturals Lamb 5 A
Northwest Naturals Trout 1 A
Northwest Naturals Turkey 5 A
Northwest Naturals Whitefish and Salmon 5 A

Recipe and Label Analysis

Northwest Naturals Chicken Formula 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.


Northwest Naturals Chicken Formula

Raw Dog Food

Estimated Dry Matter Nutrient Content

Protein = 50% | Fat = 29% | Carbs = 13%

Ingredients: Chicken, ground chicken bone, chicken liver, chicken gizzard, cantaloupe, carrots, broccoli, romaine lettuce, egg, ground flaxseed, fish oil, apple cider vinegar, blueberry, cranberry, inulin, dried kelp, potassium chloride, sodium chloride, ginger, parsley, garlic, zinc proteinate, iron proteinate, vitamin E supplement, copper proteinate, manganese proteinate, mixed tocopherols (as preservative), vitamin D supplement

Fiber (estimated dry matter content) = 7.1%

Red denotes controversial item

Estimated Nutrient Content
MethodProteinFatCarbs
Guaranteed Analysis14%8%NA
Dry Matter Basis50%29%13%
Calorie Weighted Basis38%52%10%
Protein = 38% | Fat = 52% | Carbs = 10%

Ingredient Analysis

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 ground chicken bone, an excellent source of natural calcium.

The third ingredient includes chicken liver. This is an organ meat sourced from a named animal and thus considered a beneficial component.

The fourth ingredient is chicken gizzard. The gizzard is a low-fat, meaty organ found in the digestive tract of birds and assists in grinding up consumed food. This item is considered a canine dietary delicacy.

Next is a series of nutrient-rich fruits and vegetables

  • Cantaloupe
  • Carrots
  • Broccoli
  • Romaine lettuce

The ninth ingredient includes eggs. Eggs are easy to digest and have an exceptionally high biological value.

The tenth 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.

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 Northwest Naturals product.

With 4 notable exceptions

First, 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.

Next, garlic can be a controversial item. Although many favor the ingredient for its claimed health benefits, garlic has been linked to Heinz body anemia in dogs.2

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.

In addition, fish 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, fish oil should be considered a commendable addition.

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.

Nutrient Analysis

Based on its ingredients alone, Northwest Naturals Dog Food looks like an above-average raw product.

The dashboard displays a dry matter protein reading of 50%, a fat level of 29% and estimated carbohydrates of about 13%.

As a group, the brand features an average protein content of 44% and a mean fat level of 32%. Together, these figures suggest a carbohydrate content of 16% for the overall product line.

And a fat-to-protein ratio of about 80%.

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

Even when you consider the protein-boosting effect of the flaxseed, this looks like the profile of a raw product containing a generous amount of meat.

However, with 52% of the total calories in our example coming from fat versus just 38% from protein, some recipes may not be suitable for pets on a low-fat diet.

Our Rating of Northwest Naturals Raw Frozen Dog Food

Northwest Naturals is a grain-free raw dog food using a generous amount of named meats and organs as its dominant source of animal protein, thus earning the brand 5 stars.

Enthusiastically recommended.

Northwest Naturals Dog Food
Recall History

The following automated list (if present) includes all dog food recalls since 2009 related to Northwest Naturals.

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

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More Northwest Naturals Brand Reviews

The following Northwest Naturals 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.

However, we do receive a referral fee from online retailers (like Chewy or Amazon) and from sellers of perishable pet food when readers click over to their websites from ours. This helps cover the cost of operation of our free blog. Thanks for your support.

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.

References

  1. Association of American Feed Control Officials
  2. 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)

01/10/2022 Last Update

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