Performatrin Ultra (Dry)


Rating: ★★★★☆

Performatrin Ultra Dog Food receives the Advisor’s second-highest tier rating of 4 stars.

The Performatrin Ultra product line includes six dry 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.

  • Performatrin Ultra Healthy Weight with Salmon [U]
  • Performatrin Ultra Lamb and Brown Rice Puppy [U]
  • Performatrin Ultra Chicken and Brown Rice Puppy [U]
  • Performatrin Ultra Lamb and Brown Rice Adult (3.5 stars) [U]
  • Performatrin Ultra Healthy Weight with Salmon Small Bite [U]
  • Performatrin Ultra Chicken and Brown Rice Adult (3.5 stars) [U]

Performatrin Ultra Chicken and Brown Rice Adult Recipe was selected to represent the other products in the line for this review.

Performatrin Ultra Chicken and Brown Rice Adult Recipe

Dry Dog Food

Estimated Dry Matter Nutrient Content

Protein = 24% | Fat = 13% | Carbs = 54%

Ingredients: Chicken, chicken meal, brown rice, oatmeal, rice, pearled barley, dried egg product, dried tomato pomace, millet, rye, chicken fat (stabilized with mixed tocopherols and citric acid), natural chicken flavor, salmon meal, sunflower oil (stabilized with mixed tocopherols and citric acid), suncured alfalfa meal, whole sweet potatoes, whole carrots, peas, lecithin, potassium chloride, salt, dried kelp, flaxseed, calcium carbonate, chicory root extract, dicalcium phosphate, dl-methionine, pumpkin, whole cranberries, whole apples, whole blueberries, choline chloride, whole blackberries, spinach, taurine, dried yeast, Yucca schidigera extract, garlic, l-ascorbyl-2-polyphosphate (source of vitamin C), dried Lactobacillus acidophilus fermentation product, dried Lactobacillus casei fermentation product, dried Bifidobacterium bifidum fermentation product, dried Streptococcus faecium fermentation product, zinc proteinate, zinc oxide, iron proteinate, ferrous sulfate, vitamin E supplement, ground ginger, manganese proteinate, manganous oxide, dried chamomile, ground fennel seed, dandelion, rosemary, basil, sage, copper proteinate, copper sulfate, dried lemon balm, vitamin A supplement, niacin, thiamine mononitrate, riboflavin, vitamin D3 supplement, peppermint, d-calcium pantothenate, pyridoxine hydrochloride, inositol, beta-carotene, vitamin B12 supplement, folic acid, biotin, cobalt proteinate, calcium iodide, selenium yeast, sodium selenite

Fiber (estimated dry matter content) = 4.4%

Red items indicate controversial ingredients

Estimated Nutrient Content
Guaranteed Analysis22%12%NA
Dry Matter Basis24%13%54%
Calorie Weighted Basis22%29%49%
Protein = 22% | Fat = 29% | Carbs = 49%

The first ingredient in this dog food is chicken. Although it is a quality item, raw chicken contains about 80% 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 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 fourth ingredient is oatmeal, a whole-grain product made from coarsely ground oats. Oatmeal is naturally rich in B-vitamins, dietary fiber and can be (depending upon its level of purity) gluten-free.

The fifth ingredient is rice. Is this whole grain rice, brown rice or white rice? Since the word “rice” doesn’t tell us much, it’s impossible to judge the quality of this item.

The sixth ingredient is barley. Barley is a starchy carbohydrate supplying fiber and other healthy nutrients. The term “pearled” means the grain has been processed to remove its outer hull and bran, unlike whole barley. However, aside from its energy content, this cereal grain is of only modest nutritional value to a dog.

The seventh ingredient is 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.

The eighth ingredient is tomato pomace. Tomato pomace is a controversial ingredient, a by-product remaining after processing tomatoes into juice, soup and ketchup.

Many praise tomato pomace for its high fiber and nutrient content, while others scorn it as an inexpensive pet food filler.

Just the same, there’s probably not enough tomato pomace here to make much of a difference.

The ninth ingredient is millet, a gluten-free grain harvested from certain seed grasses. Millet is hypoallergenic and naturally rich in B-vitamins and fiber as well as other essential minerals.

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 nine notable exceptions

First, we find sunflower oil. Sunflower oil is nutritionally similar to safflower oil. Since these oils are high in omega-6 fatty acids and contain no omega-3’s, they’re considered less nutritious than canola or flaxseed oils.

Sunflower oil is notable for its resistance to heat damage during cooking.

There are several different types of sunflower oil, some better than others. Without knowing more, it’s impossible to judge the quality of this ingredient.

Next, although alfalfa meal is high in plant protein (about 18%) and fiber (25%), this hay-family item is more commonly associated with horse feeds.

In addition, this recipe 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.

Next, flaxseed is 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 note the inclusion of chicory root which is rich in inulin, a starch-like compound made up of repeating units of carbohydrates and found in certain roots and tubers.

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.

In addition, dried yeast can be a controversial item. Dried yeast contains about 45% protein and is rich in 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.

What’s more, a vocal minority insist yeast can increase the risk of developing the life-threatening condition known as bloat. However, this is something we’ve not been able to scientifically verify.

In any case, unless your dog is specifically allergic to it, we feel yeast should be considered a nutritious addition.

Next, we find garlic which 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.

Also, this recipe contains selenium yeast. Unlike the more common inorganic form of selenium (sodium selenite), this natural yeast supplement is considered a safer anti-cancer alternative.

And lastly, this food inlcudes 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.

Performatrin Ultra Dog Food
The Bottom Line

Judging by its ingredients alone, Performatrin Ultra Dog Food looks like an above-average dry 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 24%, a fat level of 13% and estimated carbohydrates of about 54%.

As a group, the brand features an average protein content of 28% and a mean fat level of 13%. Together, these figures suggest a carbohydrate content of 51% for the overall product line.

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

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 alfalfa meal, peas, flaxseed and dried yeast, this looks like the profile of a kibble containing a moderate amount of meat.

Bottom line?

Performatrin Ultra is a plant-based dry dog food using a moderate amount of named meats as its main sources of animal protein, thus earning the brand 4 stars.

Highly 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.

Performatrin 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.

Get free dog food recall alerts sent to you by email. Subscribe to The Advisor’s recall notification list.

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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.

In closing, we do not accept money, gifts or samples from pet food companies in exchange for special consideration in the preparation of our reviews or ratings.

However, we do receive a fee from for each purchase made as a direct result of a referral from our website. This fee is a fixed dollar amount and has nothing to do with the size of an order or the brand selected for purchase.

Have an opinion about this dog food? Or maybe the review itself? Please know we welcome your comments.

Notes and Updates

12/29/2016 Last Update

  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)
  • robin cooke

    Well I wish I had seen this earlier. I started my lab on the healthy weight a month ago. Now after the second bag, wont eat, lethargic vet cant say whats wrong. I am stopping it today.

  • Lou

    I have two chihuahuas both have been eating this dog food for two years as it turns out one of them got really sick from it having seizures after about a year. Also he was having to urinate constantly. That went on for a long time. We switch to Taste of the Wild lamb and all seizures have stopped. In just a short time, the dog has become much more active much more happy playful much less urination, both dog go at the same interval again. He was breathing very shallow and quick all the time his breathing is slowly returning to normal. not saying this is a bad product just saying one of my boys got real sick. Several thousand of dollars in vet bills, that found nothing, so many overnight stays at the vet but we thought you would die that night, So many specialist, so many needles, blood test, even found that one vet left a needle in our poor dog without telling us.
    Are Dog would typically have these events during the night choking silently on his saliva to the point where I literally stayed up to watch him and slept during the day because he did not seem to have the events during the day. The funny thing is I’ve read horrible things about Taste of the Wild lamb or Sierra but all I can tell you right now is it’s working. If you are using it and your dog seems to be snoring a lot or seems to have runny noses or seems to be going to the bathroom constantly peeing you might want to switch your dog food and imediately my dog is still on anti-seizure meds and we will try to get him off of these meds soon. Come on people if they are not giving humans real salmon what makes you think they’ll give it to your dog.

  • Danielle Emond

    My picky Golden Retriever LOVES the Permormatrin Ultra grain free dog food!!!! Finally found a food he adores and that is good for him. He also loves their wet food duck and peas and their turkey one.

  • Hound

    In the ingredients it lists whole apples? This is not the only brand I’ve seen this on. I’ve also seen whole pears. The seeds in the apples can be toxic to dogs in large amounts. They contain cyanide. Would this small amount have an effect on a dog that eats it every day?

  • Storm’s Mom

    My guy has had Performatrin Ultra Grain Free, both “Small Bites” and regular formula, as well as the new Ocean Grain Free multiple times each. He’s done awesome on each bag. I haven’t tried the grain-inclusive varieties because the protein is too low for my liking. Do you still have some of the Go food you were feeding before? If so, mix it with the new kibble (75% Go, 25% Performatrin) for a while until poops are firm, and then gradually increase the amount of the Performatrin in the mix (25%, 50%, then 75% ..only increasing when poops are firm) until you are at 100%. If you don’t have enough Go to do a proper transition like that, get some pure canned pumpkin (not the pie filling stuff) and digestive enzymes and probiotics, as these should help with the sudden switch over. If you are doing a sudden switch over, keep in mind that you may have tummy troubles for a few days or a week. I’m willing to bet that some of the issues with dogs “becoming ill” is because a proper transition hasn’t taken place. Hope that helps!

  • FlagWaver

    We were feeding our two Maltese mix rescue dogs GO dog food. But our local pet store suddenly stopped selling it, and switched to perforation ultra. I am.trying to get reviews from.anyone who has used this brand. I see one here that states both of their dogs became ill after using this brand. That really worried me. Anyone??

  • sharron

    been doing that for the past 6 years
    never works the way i think it should – she never seems to like what i think a dog would like – i don’t think she’s really a dog – i think she’s a cat in dog’s clothing

  • Pitlove

    nah not really. I always still think oh I could try that food for Bentley when we get a new food at work or something. but I have to remember that he does better when I don’t do that.

  • sharron

    i should have known better

  • Pitlove

    something to note about changing foods. since i’ve stopped changing Bentley’s food so much, he’s much better about eating. hes been eating the same food for over a month now and this is probably the most interested hes been in food in a while. i think dogs are different and some, like Bentley, prefer eating one food for more than 1 small bag lasts. i’d still like to try another flavor within Fromm for him, but i really feel he didn’t like his food being changed all the time.

  • sharron

    i would like to know as well – i was asking about food not about lexee – god forbid if i make any sort of statement – there a few that still respond which is nice and appreciated

  • Dog_Obsessed

    I’m confused. I may have missed something, but what about snharron’s comment made you think that others would stop offering her advice? Again, there may have been something I missed here. Can someone please clarify this?

  • Pitlove

    ya thats the best thing you can do. just go with A) what works for the IBS and B) what she likes

  • sharron

    this food isn’t going well – she won’t eat it – she ate it for dinner because it was something new – fed the RC dry with the RC wet this am after she refused the salmon food and she was happy with that – going to keep her on the RC, dry and wet – i thought she would like a change but salmon certainly isn’t on her list of favourites – so RC it is and will stay that way – i will change the wet food if need be but not the dry, it’s the dry that she kicks up a fuss over

  • sharron

    is there a dry dog food that comes in beef – all i can find is chicken, lamb and fish

  • sharron

    thanks for your comments – i don’t overfeed lexee – her vet said to feed her 3 small meals a day, so she gets 1/8 cup of dry with a tbsp of wet each meal – she’s a yorkie/chihuahua, nearly 7 yrs and slightly overweight, probably a 1/2 lb. – she doesn’t like and will refuse to eat a lot of the can foods on the market, have tried many, for some reason she does like and will eat the RC wet from the clinic and she does well on RC – she does get tired of eating the same food after awhile especially dry, so that’s why i thought i would try salmon for a change, she’s not crazy about it – then again she doesn’t get excited about meal time, doesn’t matter what i feed her

  • Pitlove

    lexee has IBS and the rX Royal Canin canned food has made a huge improvement in her symptoms.

  • Justin Büyüközer

    LEAPS AND BOUNDS better than anything Royal Canin has to offer. The salmon formula is a great weight control/maintenance, and great for their joints. So if you have a large breed dog, then this would be a fantastic one for Lexee. It’s also hormone free meat, made in Canada, and Holistic, with most of it’s ingredients sourced in Ontario. Just be careful with portion control. A common mistake people do is over feed their dogs because they go by the suggestions on the bag. ALL dog foods, including RC and Performatrin usually suggest twice what is needed just so you go through the bag faster. Usually when dogs ‘lose interest’ in their food is because they are being fed to much. Portion control is key, most dogs can’t do it themselves, so they need help. Attached is a great scale for an average activity dog. And I see that you are still feeding RC canned food. Might I suggest feeding Lexee almost anything else? RC wet food leave more to desire for the price that you pay.

  • sharron

    thanks, i will

  • Pitlove

    good. i hope she continues to do well on this food. let me know how it goes

  • sharron

    oh yes – can’t go without putting the can in her dish

  • Pitlove

    nice! still doing the RC canned?

  • sharron

    everything is fine so far

  • Pitlove

    hows she doing so far? any bad poo or acid reflux?

  • sharron

    yes she ate it at dinner

  • Pitlove

    I’ve heard good things about it. Have u fed it yet?

  • sharron

    ok, i get your point but explain to me what i am suppose to do when her vet tells me to make sure she eats so she doesn’t get acid reflux and she refuses to eat because she’s bored with the same food that she’s been eating for the past 3 weeks – i thought perhaps she would like to try salmon for a change

  • InkedMarie

    After deleting two other posts, I’m just going to say that don’t wonder or be surpsised when people stop offering you help.

  • sharron

    i bought a bag of the salmon today because lexee was getting bored of the royal canin dry – i am assuming that this is a decent food – any thoughts? – thanks

  • rosiegirl

    I started out feeding our border collie this when she was a puppy as the people I got her from had her on Pedigree :O. She LOVED it. Never was sick or starving. When they switched the bag I thought they didn’t sell it anymore……3yrs later I asked about it and was directed right to it, so happy! I had her on Merrick right before this and she hated it.
    I am feeding her the Grain Free Turkey Salmon Duck food.

  • Jake Adduono

    Puppies are more sensitive to large changes in diet. The sensitivity could last weeks. You should always mix the new food with the old for a few weeks (more old food, less new food, adding more new food as time goes on) before going to just the new food, otherwise you will end up with really bad gas and loose stools like you said.

  • Jake Adduono

    Performatrin Ultra doesn’t contain any ingredients that are proven to be a health hazard to any dog that isn’t allergic or sensitive (low chance) to any of the ingredients. Although it may contain one or two controversial flavorants, they do more good than harm by letting your dog somewhat enjoy its food. If your vet has actually told you to never feed your dogs Performatrin, then your vet also should have also told you what ingredients that your dog is actually sensitive or allergic to. Your dog is likely doing better on a “special vet diet” because it has very limited ingredients. In the long term, your dogs could still have some health problems if your limited diet doesn’t have all the proper nutrients necessary to keep your dog happy and energetic. Consider consulting another, more experienced vet to see if your dog needs any supplemental food with the limited diet you are giving it now.

    I feed both my dogs most of the Performatrin Ultra line, alternating between flavors so they don’t get bored of their food. They’re energetic, happy, friendly, and healthy. Consider investigating your dog’s health conditions / sensitivities first!

  • Only the truth

    I’ve been feeding performatrin lamb and brown rice for 11 years to my 13yo JRT and she is the picture of perfect health and weight.

  • theBCnut

    You may be an employee, but you don’t understand the AAFCO profiles. All Life Stages foods do have what puppies need. They HAVE to meet the standards for growth to be call ALS. They are often lower calorie than foods labeled as Puppy, within a line.

  • dogeedo

    I am a petvalu employee and that is not accurate. We specifically make a puppy formula and an all life stages recipe. You can feed the all life stages formula to you’re puppy but I would advise against it as it doesn’t have the extra vitamins and minerals that are essential for a puppy’s healthy growth and development. I hope that helps!

  • Crazy4dogs

    It does get expensive. I do canned/kibble/warm water mix for breakfast and raw or cooked with a dehydrated premix for dinner. I am a total bargain hunter & often find online or store specials of 5 star foods. I buy chickens, beef, pork at the grocery store on sale. I just did a crock pot with organic celery & carrots and a whole chicken last night. They do love it. Unfortunately whenever I’m cooking they all like to sit quietly in the kitchen because they think it’s for them. 😉

    19 is a good long life! It’s so sad to see them go no matter how old they are. The longer we can keep them here, the better!

  • Shawna

    Thanks Crazy4dogs!! 🙂

    I greatly respect you folks that feed large breed dogs healthy diets (be it kibble, raw or a variety/combination diet). They get slimmer but their muscles get bigger and they get stronger (and smarter in my opinion). My little, old Chi had amazing muscle tone till the last three or four months of her life (when she started consuming less food — which I’ve read is a normal part of the dying process). 🙁

  • Crazy4dogs

    I guess she didn’t like what we were saying?

    I love your posts, by the way. I like in an area that has those wonderful “severe” winters that make walking the dogs almost impossible during winter months and my dogs have all stayed @ a good weight. I found that feeding them more raw/fresh diet they even got a bit slimmer! 🙂 Of course I have almost 200 lbs of dogs here so I have to do a combination.

  • Shawna

    She must have deleted her account.

  • Crazy4dogs

    Shawna, how does someone who is commenting suddenly become a guest? I don’t understand this process.

  • Crazy4dogs

    I have fed Orijen and it is considered a quality product. However, I do have one more comment regarding your other portion of this post. “Unless your dog is a working dog you don’t need to feed high protein” is also an incorrect statement. High quality protein and a balanced diet are the best things you can do for a dog.

  • Shawna

    I foster Boston Terrier and Papillons. I’ve had over 30 dogs come through my house over the last 8 years and I’ve had six or more of my own dogs (all toy and small breeds) over that same time frame. I’ve had as many as 12 dogs in my home at one time and I live in the city. We also have pretty severe winters here. Anyway all that said, none of my dogs get nearly the exercise they should AND not one of mine is fat and all are eating HIGH protein foods. I feed raw and protein ranges between 45 and 60% dry matter basis.

    My 19 year old Chihuahua passed away last month but had lost her eyesight due to an accident over a year ago. She was 4 pounds and eating the same really high protein diet without weight gain. NO exercise, REALLY high protein and no weight gain — she was healthy too. When she passed she had no diagnosable illnesses and no symptoms of any kind – no arthritis even.

    I also had a Papillon come in (we ended up adopting her) that was SEVERELY obese. She should weigh 12 pounds and she weighed 35. The vet told us exercising, even walking, would likely cause a heart attack. Then when she had lost enough to go on walks it was, of course, a severe weather that year. She now weighs 12 pounds and got there with very little exercise but eating the right kinds of food (high protein) to help her metabolism burn the fat.

    I just watched a short video yesterday by Dr. Peter Attia M.D. of The Eating Academy website. Dr. Attia is an extreme athlete but made the comment — there are lots of reasons to exercise, but weight loss is not one of them. Dr. Attia says in this TedMED talk “despite exercising 3 or 4 hours every single day and following the food pyramid to the letter, I had gained a lot of weight and developed something called metabolic syndrome.”

    The point – exercise is important of course but it only will help so much when you are consuming foods (even foods the government says are appropriate) that the individual metabolically reacts negatively to.

  • DogFoodie

    Ditto what Crazy4dogs said. Bill Bishop is the founder of the Blue Buffalo company and he continues to serve as its Chairman.

  • Crazy4dogs

    I think you’re wrong. I can’t find anything on Blue Buffalo being sold. They are also listed in Whole Dog Journal and have always been listed as the same company. The do copack and have changed in 2015 to some self and copacking. Here’s the BB Facebook page post from 2013 that says they never sold the company.

    I know there was some talk in Bloomberg about the company going public last year but the Purina issue put that on hold. There may have been a formula or ingredient change that caused upset in your dogs, but I think your facts are incorrect.

    As a side note, no one dog food is perfect. A good diet rotation is one of the best things you can do for your dogs.

  • Dawn Eden

    The change in ownership happened 3-4 yrs ago. I had my own dogs on BB and they started to have loose stools and diarrhea. I researched it myself and the company had changed ownership the previous October. Up until that time I had no problems with the food.

  • Crazy4dogs

    Dawn Eden I can’t comment Blue Buffalo quality as I don’t use this food. However, you are wrong on a change of ownership in Blue Buffalo. There has been no change.

  • Dawn Eden

    That is good info to know. However I feel if dogs are obese because their owners don’t exercise them properly, that is shameful. My one dog is hypothyroid and has pancreatitis which makes it a difficult battle to keep the weight off. He is also 12 yrs old. I feed a high fibre Vet diet that works for him and he is doing well with that and exercise.

  • Shawna

    They now know that overweight and obese couch potatoes can also benefit from a high protein dog food.

    There are two really good papers in the Journal of Nutrition on this.

    In this one the high protein food was 56% protein.
    “High-Protein Low-Carbohydrate Diets Enhance Weight Loss in Dogs”

    “Weight Loss in Obese Dogs: Evaluation of a High-Protein, Low-Carbohydrate Diet”

  • Dawn Eden

    Orijen is a good qualtiy food but it is also high protein. Unless your dog is a working dog you don’t need to feed high protien. The Blue Buffalo line of dog foods has changed due to the change in ownership of the company and it is not as good as it used to be. Talk to your vet………they know your dog. You really need to be informed about what you are feeding your dog now a days. There is so much garbage out there.

  • Dawn Eden

    Performatrin is garbage. If your dog is gassy and has loose stools from any food it probably has food allergies. Just watch the stools for blood. My dog had developed Inflammatory Bowel Disease and the vet feels it could be from the Performatrin food. She was absolutely perfectly healthy previous to it.

  • Dawn Eden

    I fed my dogs less that 2 bags of Performatin Salmon Dry Food. One almost died and now has chronic health problems. The other one also has chronic health issues. Both were perfectly healthy before they ate this food. My vet advised me NEVER to feed Performatrin Dog Food to any pet. There have been many animals sickened by this brand.
    Both of my dogs are on special Vet diets now.

  • who cares

    hello. i feed my dog performatrin. but i just recently moved to quebec and i cant find it anywhere here. does anyone know of a way i can get it or find it in montreal. or what would be a good food to switch my dog to. something of similar quality and ingredients, and if it costs less perfect. thanks anyone.

  • Kasia Tuli

    I got the Lamb and brown rice puppy formula for my dog, after eating it for a couple of days she got really bad gas ( she never had gas before) and loose stools. Not happy with this brand. Going back to Taste of the Wild.

  • Denise Meloche

    Thanks for all the suggestions guys I really appreciate the input. You are the greatest. Glad I found this site.

  • Dori

    I agree with Labs. There’s not enough money out there to entice me to feed Blue Buffalo to my girls. I also wouldn’t feed Orijen, for any reason whatsoever either and it has nothing to do with the cost. Check out 4 and 5 star reviewed foods and then start reading a lot of the posts on each food to get a better idea as to what experiences dogs are having with the foods. Also look on the upper left hand side of DFA and check out dog foods that have a history of recalls so that you can get a feel for the reason for the recalls and how the companies dealt with the recalls. Research, research, research. That’s what it’s all about and that’s why I absolutely love and adore DFA and it’s posters.

  • LabsRawesome

    I would not feed Blue Buffalo if it was given to me for free. Orijen is a good food, but ridiculously expensive, imo. Check out Victor Grain Free, it’s rated 5 stars on this site (DFA) I pay $40 for 30lbs. Check their store locator.

  • Storm’s Mom

    of the options you mentioned, the only one I’d feed is Orijen. Have you tried Performatrin Ultra Grain-Free? That would be a good “step up” from what you’re currently feeding.

  • Denise Meloche

    Hi, I have been feeding the performatrin lamb and rice and not happy that its only a 3 star rating. My dogs are always hungry and eat grass constantly. is the Blue Wilderness a better dog food. I have read about the orijen also. I am confused and would like to know if the other 2 are rated higher.

  • Lyn S.

    add a little cooked white rice (spoonful), that will help.

  • Lyn S.

    Same with my dog BUT once I got to the bottom of the bag discovered “bugs” and swore off this Buffalo brands. She is 11 and has been on the Salmon one for about 3 years and I always add some cooked white rice. This seems to stem the “hunger.”

  • Brantfordite

    why was my 1 year old husky/shephard cross recommended Performatrim Ultra Slim formula with Salmon. He s super skinny and very hyper. we run 5 km a day.

  • Storm’s Mom

    Once your dog is full grown, I would highly recommend trying Performatrin Ultra Grain Free rather than their grain inclusive stuff. The Grain Free is MUCH better. Unfortunately, it’s calcium level is too high to feed a large breed puppy (I’m not sure whether the grain-inclusive Performatrin Ultra would be too, though?), so in the meantime, perhaps try adding some canned topper to the food. For a list of foods appropriate for a large breed puppy see

    Because Performatrin Ultra is mainly only available in Canada, I’m not sure if that’s the reason why Hound Dog Mom didn’t include it on the list or if it’s really not appropriate for a large breed puppy. Unfortunately, Performatrin Ultra is currently updating their website so I can’t see if the grain-inclusive varieties would be appropriate to feed your pup. What are the calcium and phosphorous numbers on the bag?

  • Cindy Caines

    I have been feeding this brand to my Collie Bernese cross since she was bought home at 8 weeks. Her coat is lovely & shiny however she always seems hungry & will eat some pretty disgusting things when she is outside. I feed her a little more then what the bag recommends. I am beginning to wonder if she is lacking something & I should change food. She is almost 6 months now.

  • GSDsForever

    p.s. I love Bernese Mountain Dogs! I miss seeing them, as I did more frequently when I lived abroad in a colder climate.

  • GSDsForever

    Had he just tried BB or been on it for a while? Did you try transitioning first? If he’s been on it for a while without incident, and then this happened, if it were me I’d call BB.

    In the meantime you could feed for a couple days only cottage cheese and white rice, to get his system feeling better. That’s what I’ve done with a digestive upset and it always helped. (Some people also suggest pumpkin, but that always made it worse or unchanged for me.)

    If he is new to the food . . . does he do okay with chicken? Maybe there’s an allergy or intolerance to it? Or an intolerance to one or more of the grains?

    For large breed puppy foods, you might check out HDM’s super helpful list and thread on this site for good foods appropriate for a large breed:

    I don’t recall PU being on that list, but the brand is more limited in where it’s sold, has some new formulas out, and I don’t know if it was a brand HDM evaluated. You might wish to ask her on that thread.

  • Kwitheridge09

    Hi there! Considering this brand for my 6 month old Bernese mountain dog, I had him on blue buffalo large breed puppy and he recently had the scoots bad! We tried to figure out why thinking he had gotten into something but once given the BB with in an hour he needed out and could barely keep it and messed if his kennel bad, pour guy.
    Suggestions? Located in Ontario.

  • Holly van den Hof

    I have my boy on the Performatrin large breed puppy and he seems fine on it … though his toots are a little smelly lol I was looking into the bb wilderness large breed puppy but i cant get it here in Nova Scotia yet… but he like what he is on so we will see. 🙂

  • Chantal

    my dog has been on it for awhile and my moms has her 2 pugs and boston terrier on it and they all love it… But I have been thinking of BB Wilderness for large breed puppys because it suppose to be better but I dont know it. im still looking into it

  • Chantal


    I have a 7 month old Catahoula Leopard and American Bulldog mix. He is on Performatrin Large breed puppy food. He seems to love it and hasnt had any problems with it, but recently a friend of mine told me I should put him on Blue Buffalo Wilderness large breed puppy food because it has more protein in it and such. I have been reading reviews on BB and performatrin and they both have pros and cons. I would like to know what someone else thinks and if they have tried BB Wilderness and what their response was with it. Thanks

    Chantal from Winnipeg, mb 🙂

  • Holly van den Hof

    Is there any reviews on the basic performatrin large breed puppy formula? Im getting a puppy whose 3/4 bernese mountian and 1/4 rough collie in 2 weeks and im still trying to figure out what will be good for him.

  • Hound Dog Mom

    Try supplementing with digestive enzymes.

  • Charlene

    I started feeding my multipoo she is 7 years old and she is passing gas from this
    dry food is that normal?

  • Guest

    We have our english bulldog on the Performatrin Grain Free and we like it. We have tried every brand out there and I mean every brand and he always had issues of itching, sensitive stomach etc. But since putting him on the Performatrin Grain free he is much better. No throwing up. No itching and his activity level is up. He was also the pickiest eater not no more he eats it all. Were just happy he seems really good on it and even the shine to his coat is coming back. Finally a food that works.

  • Sandra

    Hi Mike – love this website you’ve created.  I’m interested to hear about any updates/ratings for the Performatrin Ultra grain-free.  I, too, have been feeding it to my puppy who is now 6 months-old.

  • Colddog60

    hi i have a question.
    I was told this brand of performatrin can be used for all stages,meaning puppies and adult dogs can eat this dogg food . it was a pet value emploryee,actually one of many, in many different locations  that have told me “this dog food is for all stages “. So my question is this. is this this dog food suitable for puppies, and how will this dogg food affect the growth of a growing puppy furthemore; if this dogg food isent an all stages dogg food what can be the long term effect on a puppy that is eating a dog food that was initially desigined for an adult.    
    Just curious from chris

  • J.D.

    Hi Mike,

    Thanks for staying on top of this. Really interested in your findings. 

  • Hi Waterwings,

    I need to have a written email from the company. So, I’ll call them tomorrow and request this information.

    Thanks for the help.

  • Waterwings

    Hi Mike,
    I had the same question about ethoxyquin in Performatrin Ultra Grain free, so I emailed and received the following email back:  All ingredients used in all Performatrin Ultra foods are ethoxyquin free, including the salmon meal. Sincerely,Dr. D.J. SummersNutritionistPet Valu

    ..if that helps any.. I can send it to you (and/or Dr Summers’ email address)…


  • Hi L_Pollard997,

    Unfortunately, when it comes to ethoxyquin, I wish I could agree with the nutritionist you consulted.

    However, unless otherwise specified, it would be prudent to assume most fish meal is still preserved with ethoxyquin.

    Therefore, unless and until a manufacturer posts this information publicly or send me an email confirming a fish meal is indeed ethoxyquin free, it would be misleading for me to make such an important assumption.

    Thanks for sharing your email with our community.

  • L_pollard997

    I’m not sure if you’re interested in this or not, but I emailed  the nurtritionist of performatrin about the salmon meal, any ingredients that come from china, and vitamin k. He assured me that in present day it is unusual for any premium dog foods to use ethoxiquin in they’re fish meals even though regulations state that fish meal should be preserved with ethoxiquin when being shipped by way of a boat, and even though pet food manufacturer’s do not have to disclose that information he assured me that the salmon meal that Performarin uses does not contain ethoxiquin.
    He also assured me that most ingredients they put in the food is audited themselves and any ingredient that isn’t audited by them is taken from a reputable place which has their own food audits.
    He also states that any ingredient that comes from china is not from an actual chinese manufacturer just facilities located in china. He also attached a bunch of information on the vitmain k source. 

  • L_pollard997

    thank you so much for the clearification. I was wondering. I just got a malamute cross lab puppy. she’s only 8 weeks but she’s a pretty big girl (20.1 lbs). I was told that larger dog breeds have sensitive stomaches. I’m quite passionate about getting her started her on the best possible diet. do you have any suggestions?

  • Hi L_Pollard997,

    I’m planning to post a review of Performatrin Ultra Grain Free sometime very soon. My research assistant has already completed her analysis and completed a spreadsheet for this line.

    Regarding your question about Orijen…

    Although I’ve been unable to find a statement on the Performatrin website, Orijen publicly states on its FAQ page that its fish meals are ethoxyquin free.

    Here’s the actual text taken from the company’s website:

    Does ORIJEN contain ethoxyquin?

    A: No. ORIJEN fish meats arrive FRESH; which means they are never frozen and have no preservatives what-so-ever. We work directly with our fish meal suppliers and pay them a premium to have ORIJEN fish meals preserved naturally with Vitamin E, Citric acid and Rosemary extract instead of the commonly used ethoxyquin preservative.

    Hope this helps.

  • L_pollard997

    also in here is says that salmon meal might contain a harmful preservative but Orijen  (a 5 star puppy food) also has salmon meal but there it say “unlike most fish meals, salmon meal appears to have no…” basically this is saying that the salmon meal is preformatrin is toxic but the salmon meal in orijen is not?

  • L_pollard997

    Can anyone please rate the new preformatrin grain-free product? I like the fact that they have alot of vitamins, probiotics and prebiotics. but if it’s anyless than five stars, i’m not sure that i’d want to give it to my pup.

  • sandy

    My black one sheds the least. One of mine might has a triple coat around his neck and shoulders (or something) he always starts looking like a lion.

  • Wow, Sandy. That’s impressive. Now, if you could only control their shedding.

    Though I no longer have any, I’ve personally owned many pugs over my life. And I still have a soft spot in my heart for every one of these lovable creatures.

  • sandy

    Bruiser lost 10 pounds on a grain free diet.

  • sandy

    For fosters I will use a grain free food with at least 30% protein and it can be regular or low fat.  The only thing is there are only a few foods that I would accept that are low fat (and dont sacrifice meat content).  Ex:  Core Reduced Fat, BB Wilderness Healthy Weight, or Amicus (made by Horizon).  Otherwise, the regular lines have worked fine for weight loss.  I just watch their intake carefully including non-grain treats and exercise.  The pugs usually lose weight at 1/3 cup twice a day.  My personal pugs also maintain and lose weight if needed eating the same kind of kibble and raw foods as well.

  • sharron

    Hi Sandy

    thanks for your reply.
    She’s a yorkie/chihuahua and has about a 1/2 lb now to loose.
    So my understanding is that i should put lexee on a grain free food and it doesn’t matter what the percentage of fat is? What about carbs and calories?

    thanks sharron

  • sandy

    The large one lost 10 pounds eating regular Blue Buffalo Wilderness.

  • sandy

    Performatrin Slim Salmon has grain and Core does not. I’ve found that it is easier for my foster dogs to lose weight on a grain free (mod to high protein) food regardless of it having lower fat or not.

  • Hi Gorco,

    I wish there was some scientific way I could reliably answer your question.

    Unfortunately, due to the biological uniqueness of each pet, I cannot provide customized product comparisons for each reader.

    For more help, please check out the reviews themselves and the comment that follow each one.

    Or check back here for a possible response from one of our other readers.

    Wish I could be more help.

  • Gorco

    Hi Mike

    which brand do you think is better wellness core reduced fat
    or performatrin slim salmon or are they about the same in quality?

    thanks sharron

  • Viper

    I have been feeding my lab the new performatrin ultra  grain free for the last 3 months and he is LOVING it.  We were having problems with him not wanting to eat his old food.  The second we switched to this food, he was gobbling it down like crazy.  This product is good quality at a reasonable price. 

  • Patti Kemp

    Hi…I’ve just started feeding my 7 1/2 year old male shih tzu Performatrin Weight Control small kibble. We’ll see if he looses some of his weight. I did have him on Fromm, and he seemed to be steadily gaining…not good!! I’ve also changed his treats to 100% grain free/ low calorie ones.

  • Hi Kallen… Performatrin Ultra’s new grain free product is already on my To Do list. However, due to my current backlog of products for review, it could be a while longer before I get to it. So, be sure to check back. Thanks for the tip.

  • kallen

    there is a new performatrin ultra that is grain free. is it possible to have it reviewed? i’d like to compare it to the rest of the line because it is significantly more money.

  • Golden-nut

    Really looking forward to a review of this NEW ULTRA PERFORMARTRIN Grain FREE. I had to buy a bag and check it out, I am currently feed Merrick, but have noticed inconsistency from bag to bag, like sometimes smells bad, vegetable kibble not as much any more, etc….so started searching new foods and at the store after reading the ingredients, it looked GREAT. But would love to know what others think about it, and to see the analyses on here. Mike, I hope you get a chance to check this food out. Its got to be better than 3 stars…..I hope

  • Waterwings

    Oh wow, the grain-free Performatrin Ultra kibble really does look MUCH better than their other options!! Definitely better than a 3-star, I would say! Can’t wait for a review from Mike on this one. I anticipate picking up a bag when my current stash of another kibble starts to run low.

  • Victoria

    their grain free formula looks pretty good and no menadione.

  • Hi Gary… The Lamb and Rice is on par with the Chicken and Rice (3 stars). But the Salmon product looks notably better. More meat and less fat. But as my review warns, they all appear to contain menadione and probably ethoxyquin, too. Hope this helps.

  • Shawna, I agree… any non-animal based fats are not as healthy.

  • Shawna

    Looks like the ingredients are similar however it has slightly less protein (at 22%) and fat (at 12%) so therefore slightly more carbs. I noticed it also contains canola oil as well as the sunflower listed in the chicken product. Mike red flags canola oil but (see ** below). Guessing Mike would still rate the lamb and rice at 3 stars.

    **”The third ingredient includes canola oil. Most applaud canola for its favorable omega-3 content… while a vocal minority condemn it as an unhealthy fat.

    Current thinking (ours included) finds the negative stories about canola oil more the stuff of urban legend than actual science.1″ —- linked from another food that uses canola.

    I’m in the “minority” that condemns canola 🙂

  • Gary, the entire line is rated 3-stars, as Mike chooses to use one product from a line to represent the brand. If Mike sees a food in a line that’s a “stand-out” he will give it a higher (or lower!) rating accordingly. But in this case, the entire product line merritts 3-stars.

  • Gary

    Would really like to know how the Lamb & Rice product compares to above mentioned food, as that is the one we feed our two retrievers