Pedigree Choice Cuts (Canned)

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Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆

See Pedigree Dog Food (Canned)

Pedigree Choice Cuts Canned Dog Food receives the Advisor’s second-lowest rating of two stars.

Currently, the Pedigree Choice Cuts product line lists eight canned dog foods… each with a gravy-style design.

We found no AAFCO nutritional adequacy recommendations for these dog foods anywhere on the Pedigree website.

  • Pedigree Choice Cuts in Gravy with Beef
  • Pedigree Choice Cuts in Gravy with Chicken
  • Pedigree Choice Cuts in Gravy Country Stew
  • Pedigree Choice Cuts in Gravy with Beef and Rice
  • Pedigree Choice Cuts in Gravy with Beef and Liver
  • Pedigree Choice Cuts in Gravy with Beef and Barley
  • Pedigree Choice Cuts in Gravy with Chicken and Rice
  • Pedigree Choice Cuts in Gravy with Lamb and Vegetables

Pedigree Choice Cuts in Gravy Country Stew Canned Dog Food was selected to represent the other products in the line for this review.

Pedigree Choice Cuts in Gravy Country Stew

Canned Dog Food

Estimated Dry Matter Nutrient Content

Protein = 44% | Fat = 17% | Carbs = 31%

Ingredients: Sufficient water for processing, chicken, meat by-products, wheat flour, beef, liver, wheat gluten, peas, salt, carrots, sodium tripolyphosphate, natural flavors, guar gum, vegetable oil (source of linoleic acid), caramel coloring, minerals (potassium chloride, zinc sulfate, copper sulfate, potassium iodide), sodium alginate, bay leaves, xanthan gum, onion powder, vitamins (vitamin E, A & D3 supplements, d-calcium pantothenate, thiamine mononitrate {vitamin B1}, biotin), garlic powder, yellow #6, yellow #5

Fiber (estimated dry matter content) = 5.6%

Red items indicate controversial ingredients

Estimated Nutrient Content
MethodProteinFatCarbs
Guaranteed Analysis8%3%NA
Dry Matter Basis44%17%31%
Calorie Weighted Basis38%35%27%
Protein = 38% | Fat = 35% | Carbs = 27%

The first ingredient in this dog food is water… which (of course) adds nothing but moisture to this food. Water is a routine finding in most canned dog foods.

The second ingredient is chicken. Chicken is considered “the clean combination of flesh and skin… derived from the parts or whole carcasses of chicken”.1

Like most meats, chicken is naturally rich in the ten essential amino acids required by a dog to sustain life. This is a quality ingredient.

The third ingredient is meat by-products, an item made from slaughterhouse waste. This is what’s left of slaughtered animals after all the prime striated muscle cuts have been removed.

With the exception of hair, horns, teeth and hooves, this item can include almost any other part of the animal.1

Although most meat by-products can be nutritious, we do not consider such vaguely described (generic) ingredients to be as high in quality as those derived from a named animal source.

The fourth item is wheat flour. Now, contrary to what you may have heard, wheat isn’t necessarily a bad ingredient.

On the other hand, although there’s no way to know for sure here, the wheat used in making many pet foods can be similar to the kind used to make feed for livestock.

And that can sometimes be problematic.

What’s more, wheat is commonly linked to canine food allergies3.

For these reasons, we rarely consider wheat a preferred component in any dog food.

The fifth ingredient is beef. Beef is defined as “the clean flesh derived from slaughtered cattle” and includes skeletal muscle or the muscle tissues of the tongue, diaphragm, heart or esophagus.1

Like chicken, beef can also be considered a quality meat ingredient.

The sixth ingredient is liver. Normally, a named liver ingredient can be a nutritious component. However, in this case, the source of the liver is unknown… generic. It could come from almost anywhere.

For this reason, this item cannot be considered a quality addition.

The seventh ingredient is wheat gluten… the rubbery residue remaining once wheat has had most of its starchy carbohydrate (the good stuff) washed out of it.

Compared to meat, glutens are inferior grain-based proteins low in many of the essential amino acids dogs need to sustain life.

This inexpensive plant-based ingredient can significantly boost the total protein content reported in this dog food.

The eighth ingredient includes peas. Peas are considered a quality source of carbohydrates. Plus (like all legumes) they’re loaded with natural fiber.

What’s more, peas contain about 25% protein… protein that must be included as a contributor to the total protein in this food.

Onion and garlic are controversial items. In rare cases, they have been linked to Heinz body anemia in dogs5.

Most of the professional literature we surveyed did not produce any conclusive guidance regarding the use of onion or garlic… especially in small amounts (as they are here).

Although we see no reason to be overly concerned here, we do feel it is a mistake to include such emotionally charged (and suspicious) ingredients in any dog food product.

We’re always disappointed to see the use of artificial coloring in any dog food.

Coloring is used to make the product more appealing to you… not your dog. After all, do you really think your dog cares what color her food is?

Hardly.

Also, the minerals listed here do not appear to be chelated. And that can make them more difficult to absorb. Non-chelated minerals are usually associated with lower quality dog foods.

The Bottom Line…
Pedigree Choice Cuts Canned Dog Food

Judging by the quality of these ingredients, Pedigree Choice Cuts looks like a below-average canned dog food.

But ingredient quality alone does not give us a complete picture. For it is still most valuable to estimate the amount of meat present before determining a final rating.

The dashboard displays a dry matter protein reading of 44%, a fat level of 17% and an estimated carbohydrate content of 31%.

All products in the line present the same protein, fat and estimated carbohydrate percentages as this Country Stew product.

Above-average protein. Below-average fat. And near-average carbs when compared to a typical canned dog food.

Yet when you consider the plant-based protein-boosting effect of the wheat gluten, this is the profile of a wet food containing only a moderate amount of meat.

Bottom line?

Pedigree Choice Cuts is a meat-based canned dog food using a moderate amount of chicken and meat by-products as its main sources of animal protein… thus earning the brand two stars.

Not recommended.

Those looking for a kibble made by the same company may want to check out our review of Pedigree Dry Dog Food.

A Final Word

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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.

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Notes and Updates

11/12/2009 Original review
06/03/2010 Review updated

04/23/2012 Last Update

  1. Association of American Feed Control Officials
  2. Association of American Feed Control Officials
  3. White, S., Update on food allergy in the dog and cat, World Small Animal Veterinary Association, Vancouver, 2001
  4. Association of American Feed Control Officials
  5. 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)