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Primal Raw Frozen Formulas Dog Food Review (Raw Frozen)

Primal Canine Raw Frozen Dog Food


Which Primal Raw Frozen Recipes Get
Our Best Ratings?

Primal Raw Frozen Dog Food receives the Advisor’s top rating of 5 stars.

The Primal Raw Frozen Formulas product line includes the 22 raw dog foods listed below.

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

Product Rating AAFCO
Primal Raw Frozen Beef Formula Nuggets 5 M
Primal Raw Frozen Beef Formula Patties 5 M
Primal Raw Frozen Beef Formula Pronto 5 M
Primal Raw Frozen Chicken Formula Nuggets 5 M
Primal Raw Frozen Chicken Formula Patties 5 M
Primal Raw Frozen Chicken Formula Pronto 5 M
Primal Raw Frozen Duck Formula Nuggets 5 A
Primal Raw Frozen Duck Formula Patties 5 A
Primal Raw Frozen Duck Formula Pronto 5 A
Primal Raw Frozen Lamb Formula Nuggets 3.5 M
Primal Raw Frozen Lamb Formula Patties 3.5 M
Primal Raw Frozen Lamb Formula Pronto 3.5 M
Primal Raw Frozen Rabbit Formula Nuggets 5 A
Primal Raw Frozen Rabbit Formula Patties 5 A
Primal Raw Frozen Turkey and Sardine Formula Nuggets 5 A
Primal Raw Frozen Turkey and Sardine Formula Patties 5 A
Primal Raw Frozen Turkey and Sardine Formula Pronto 5 A
Primal Raw Frozen Venison Formula Nuggets 5 A
Primal Raw Frozen Venison Formula Patties 5 A
Primal Raw Frozen Pork Formula Nuggets 5 A
Primal Raw Frozen Pork Formula Patties 5 A
Primal Raw Frozen Pork Formula Pronto 5 A

Recipe and Label Analysis

Primal Raw Frozen Chicken Formula Nuggets 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.

Primal Raw Frozen Chicken Formula Nuggets

Frozen Dog Food

Estimated Dry Matter Nutrient Content

Protein = 46% | Fat = 31% | Carbs = 15%

Ingredients: Chicken (with ground bone), chicken livers, organic carrots, organic squash, organic kale, organic apples, organic parsley, organic pumpkin seeds, organic sunflower seeds, organic broccoli, organic blueberries, organic cranberries, organic apple cider vinegar, montmorillonite clay, cod liver oil, dried yeast, fish oil, organic coconut oil, vitamin E supplement, organic ground alfalfa, dried organic kelp, taurine

Fiber (estimated dry matter content) = 7.7%

Red denotes controversial item

Estimated Nutrient Content
Guaranteed Analysis12%8%NA
Dry Matter Basis46%31%15%
Calorie Weighted Basis34%55%11%
Protein = 34% | Fat = 55% | Carbs = 11%

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.

This item also includes ground chicken bone, an excellent source of natural calcium.

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

The third ingredient includes carrots, which are rich in beta-carotene, minerals and dietary fiber.

The next ingredient is squash. Squash is a nutritious addition high in complex carbohydrates, vitamins, minerals and dietary fiber.

The fifth ingredient is kale, which is a type of cabbage in which the central leaves do not form a head. This dark green vegetable is especially rich in beta-carotene, vitamins C, vitamin K and calcium.

And like broccoli, kale contains sulforaphane, a natural chemical believed to possess potent anti-cancer properties.

The sixth ingredient is apple, a nutrient-rich fruit that’s also high in fiber.

The next addition is parsley. Due to its exceptional vitamin and mineral content, parsley exhibits a remarkably high nutrient Completeness Score2 of 91.

The eighth ingredient lists pumpkin seeds. Pumpkin seeds are rich in fiber, vitamins, minerals and, more importantly, linoleic acid — an essential omega-6 fat.

The ninth ingredient includes sunflower seeds, a good source of plant-based fatty acids that are also rich in vitamins, minerals and dietary fiber.

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 Primal product.

With 5 notable exceptions

First, we find fish oil. 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.

Next, this recipe includes coconut oil, a natural oil rich in medium-chain fatty acids.

Medium-chain triglycerides have been shown to improve cognitive function in older dogs.3

Because of its proven safety4 as well as its potential to help in the treatment of canine cognitive dysfunction syndrome (CDS) and chronic skin disorders, MCT can be considered a positive addition to this recipe.

In addition, alfalfa is a flowering member of the pea family. Although alfalfa is high in protein (18%) and fiber, it’s less common to see it used in dog food.

Next, we note the use of taurine, an important amino acid associated with the healthy function of heart muscle. Although taurine is not typically considered essential in canines, some dogs have been shown to be deficient in this critical nutrient.

Since taurine deficiency appears to be more common in pets consuming grain-free diets, we view its presence in this recipe as a positive addition.

And lastly, with the exception of Vitamin E, we find no mention of added vitamins or minerals on the ingredients list. However, we’re reassured to find a detailed list of naturally present nutrients on the company’s website.

Nutrient Analysis

Since this recipe contains a number of organic ingredients, we feel compelled to grant this line a more favorable status as we consider its final rating.

That’s because organic ingredients must comply with notably more stringent government standards — standards which significantly restrict the use of any synthetic pesticides, herbicides, insecticides, hormones or antibiotics.

With that in mind…

Based on its ingredients alone, Primal Raw Frozen Formulas dog food looks like an above-average raw product.

The dashboard displays a dry matter protein reading of 46%, a fat level of 31% and estimated carbohydrates of about 15%.

As a group, the brand features an average protein content of 50% and a mean fat level of 25%. Together, these figures suggest a carbohydrate content of 17% for the overall product line.

And a fat-to-protein ratio of about 52%.

Which means this Primal product line contains…

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

Even when you consider the mild protein-boosting effect of the alfalfa, this looks like the profile of a raw dog food containing an abundance of meat.

Our Rating of Primal Raw Frozen Formulas Dog Food

Primal Raw Frozen Formulas is a grain-free raw dog food using an abundance of named meats and organs as its dominant source of animal protein, thus earning the brand 5 stars.

Enthusiastically 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.

Primal Raw Frozen Dog Food Recall History

The following automated list (if present) includes all dog food recalls related to Primal through February 2024.

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

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More Primal Brand Reviews

The following Primal dog food reviews are also posted on this website:

A Final Word

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  1. Association of American Feed Control Officials
  2. Completeness Score is a measure of a food’s relative nutrient content and is computed by from the USDA’s National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference
  3. Pan Y et al, Dietary supplementation with medium-chain TAG has long-lasting cognition-enhancing effects in aged dogs, British Journal of Nutrition, Volume 103, Issue 12, June 2010, pp 1746-1754
  4. Matulka RA et al, Lack of toxicity by medium chain triglycerides (MCT) in canines during a 90-day feeding study,Food Chem Toxicol, Jan 2009, 47(1) 35-9.
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