Pedigree Dog Food (Pouch)

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Rating: ★½☆☆☆

Pedigree Dog Food in pouches receives the Advisor’s lowest-tier rating of 1.5 stars.

The Pedigree product line includes 10 pouched dog foods.

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

Important: Because many websites do not reliably specify which Growth or All Life Stages recipes are safe for large breed puppies, we do not include that data in this report. Be sure to check actual packaging for that information.

  • Pedigree Puppy Morsels in Sauce with Chicken [G]
  • Pedigree Choice Cuts in Gravy Chicken Casserole [M]
  • Pedigree Choice Cuts Filet Mignon Flavor in Gravy [M]
  • Pedigree Choice Cuts Grilled Chicken Flavor in Sauce [M]
  • Pedigree Chopped Ground Dinner with Hearty Chicken [M]
  • Pedigree Senior Morsels in Sauce with Chicken and Rice [M]
  • Pedigree Chopped Ground Dinner with Slow Cooked Beef [M]
  • Pedigree Chopped Ground Dinner Bacon and Filet Mignon Flavor [M]
  • Pedigree Chopped Ground Dinner Beef, Bacon and Cheese Flavors [M]
  • Pedigree Choice Cuts Beef, Noodles and Vegetables Flavor in Sauce [M]

Pedigree Choice Cuts Grilled Chicken Flavor in Sauce was selected to represent the other products in the line for this review.

Pedigree Choice Cuts Grilled Chicken Flavor in Sauce

Canned Dog Food

Estimated Dry Matter Nutrient Content

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

Ingredients: Sufficient water for processing, chicken, meat by-products, pork liver, animal plasma, wheat gluten, wheat flour, beet pulp, corn starch, natural flavors, salt, minerals (potassium chloride, magnesium proteinate, zinc sulfate, copper proteinate, manganese sulfate, copper sulfate, potassium iodide), sodium tripolyphosphate, natural grilled chicken flavor, added color, vitamins (choline chloride, vitamin E supplement, biotin, d-calcium pantothenate, thiamine mononitrate [vitamin B1], vitamin A supplement, vitamin D3 supplement), guar gum, iron oxide

Fiber (estimated dry matter content) = 8.3%

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 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

Chicken is naturally rich in the ten essential amino acids required by a dog to sustain life.

The third ingredient includes 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

What’s worse, this particular item is anonymous. So, the meat itself can come from any combination of cattle, pigs, sheep or goats — which can make identifying specific food allergies impossible.

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 ingredient is pork liver. This is an organ meat sourced from a named animal and thus considered a beneficial component.

The fifth ingredient is animal plasma. Plasma is what remains of blood after the blood cells themselves have been removed. In most cases, plasma can be considered a nutritious addition.

However, since there’s no mention of a specific animal in the name of this particular ingredient, this item could be sourced from any species. And that fact can make it difficult to isolate the cause of a dog’s food-based allergy.

For this reason, we do not consider generic animal plasma a quality ingredient.

The sixth ingredient is wheat gluten. Gluten is the rubbery residue remaining once wheat has had most of its starchy carbohydrate washed out of it.

Although wheat gluten contains 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 actual meat content of this dog food.

The seventh ingredient is wheat flour, a highly-refined product of wheat milling. Like corn, wheat is an inexpensive and controversial cereal grain of only modest nutritional value to a dog.

For this reason, we do not consider wheat a preferred component in any dog food.

The eighth ingredient is beet pulp. Beet pulp is a controversial ingredient, a high fiber by-product of sugar beet processing.

Some denounce beet pulp as an inexpensive filler while others cite its outstanding intestinal health and blood sugar benefits.

We only call your attention here to the controversy and believe the inclusion of beet pulp in reasonable amounts in most dog foods is entirely acceptable.

The ninth ingredient is corn starch, a starchy powder extracted from the endosperm found at the heart of a kernel of corn. Corn starch is most likely used here to thicken the broth into a gravy.

Corn starch isn’t a true red flag item. Yet we’ve highlighted here for those wishing to avoid corn-based ingredients.

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 two notable exceptions

First, iron oxide is a synthetic color additive used in industry to impart a reddish color to food — and paint. In its natural form, this chemical compound is more commonly known as “iron rust”.

We’re always disappointed to find any artificial coloring in a pet food. That’s because coloring is used to make the product more appealing to humans — not your dog. After all, do you really think your dog cares what color his food is?

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.

Pedigree Dog Food Pouches
The Bottom Line

Judging by its ingredients alone, Pedigree pouched dog food looks like a below-average wet 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 44%, a fat level of 17% and estimated carbohydrates of about 31%.

As a group, the brand features an average protein content of 43% and a mean fat level of 20%. Together, these figures suggest a carbohydrate content of 29% for the overall product line.

And a fat-to-protein ratio of about 47%.

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

Even when you consider the protein-boosting effect of the wheat gluten, this looks like the profile of a wet food containing a moderate amount of meat.

Bottom line?

Pedigree is a meat-based wet dog food using a moderate amount of named and unnamed meats and by-products as its main sources of animal protein, thus earning the brand 1.5 stars.

Not recommended.

Please note certain recipes are sometimes given a higher or lower rating based upon our estimate of their total meat content and (when appropriate) their fat-to-protein ratios.

Pedigree Dog Food
Recall History

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

To learn why our ratings have nothing to do with a product’s recall history, please visit our Dog Food Recalls FAQ page.

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Special FDA Alert

The FDA has announced it is investigating a potential connection between grain-free diets and a type of canine heart disease known as dilated cardiomyopathy. Click here for details.

A Final Word

The descriptions and analyses expressed in this and every article on this website represent the views and opinions of the author.

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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

04/23/2018 Last Update

  1. Association of American Feed Control Officials
  2. Association of American Feed Control Officials