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Pure Balance Dog Food Review
Pure Balance wet dog food receives the Advisor’s top rating of 5 stars.
The Pure Balance product line includes the 15 moist dog foods listed below.
Each recipe includes its AAFCO nutrient profile when available… Growth (puppy), Maintenance (adult), All Life Stages, Supplemental or Unspecified.
|Pure Balance Beef, Vegetables and Brown Rice Stew Canned||5||A|
|Pure Balance Chicken, Vegetables and Brown Rice Stew Canned||5||A|
|Pure Balance Grain Free Chicken Dinner in Gravy with Peas and Sweet Potato Tray||5||A|
|Pure Balance Grain Free Beef Dinner in Gravy with Carrots and Sun Dried Tomatoes Tray||5||A|
|Pure Balance Grain Free 95% Beef and Chicken Canned||2.5||M|
|Pure Balance Puppy Chicken, Vegetables and Brown Rice Stew Canned||5||G|
|Pure Balance Limited Ingredient Turkey and Sweet Potato Dinner Tray||4.5||A|
|Pure Balance Grain Free Chicken Dinner Pate Tray||4.5||A|
|Pure Balance Grain Free Lamb Dinner Pate Tray||2.5||A|
|Pure Balance Grain Free Duck, Red Pepper and Spinach in Gravy Tub||5||A|
|Pure Balance Grain Free Lamb, Pea and Carrot in Gravy Tub||5||A|
|Pure Balance Grain Free Turkey, Green Bean and Sweet Potato in Gravy Tub||5||A|
|Pure Balance Grain Free Beef, Green Bean and Carrot in Gravy Tub||5||A|
|Pure Balance Grain Free 95% Chicken Recipe Canned||2.5||M|
|Pure Balance Grain Free Limited Ingredient Turkey and Potato Recipe Canned||3||M|
Recipe and Label Analysis
Pure Balance Beef, Vegetables and Brown Rice Stew canned recipe 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.
Pure Balance Beef, Vegetables and Brown Rice Stew
Canned Dog Food
Estimated Dry Matter Nutrient Content
Ingredients: Beef broth, beef, beef liver, brown rice, salmon, dried egg white, carrots, dried egg product, peas, tomatoes, potato starch, sweet potatoes, sunflower oil, guar gum, tricalcium phosphate, spinach, red peppers, ground flaxseed, sodium phosphate, salt, oat fiber, cottage cheese (milk, whey, inulin, salt, citric acid, guar gum, mono- and diglycerides, corn starch, xanthan gum, locust bean gum, carrageenan, added color, bacterial culture, microbial enzyme, carbon dioxide, vitamin A palmitate, vitamin D3), calcium carbonate, potassium chloride, choline chloride, garlic powder, dried kelp, zinc amino acid chelate, iron amino acid chelate, l-ascorbyl-2-polyphosphate (source of vitamin C), vitamin E supplement, thiamine mononitrate, olive oil, parsley, rosemary, dried blueberries, dried cranberries, sodium selenite, copper amino acid chelate, manganese amino acid chelate, l-carnitine, cobalt amino acid chelate, niacin supplement, d-calcium pantothenate, vitamin A supplement, riboflavin supplement, biotin, vitamin B12 supplement, potassium iodide, pyridoxine hydrochloride, vitamin D3 supplement, folic acid
Fiber (estimated dry matter content) = 8.3%
Red denotes controversial item
|Estimated Nutrient Content|
|Dry Matter Basis||44%||22%||25%|
|Calorie Weighted Basis||36%||44%||21%|
The first ingredient in this dog food is beef broth. Broths are of only modest nutritional value. Yet because they add both flavor and moisture to a dog food, they are a common addition component in many canned products.
The second 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.2
Beef is naturally rich in all ten essential amino acids required by a dog to sustain life.
The third ingredient is beef liver, an organ meat sourced from a named animal and thus considered a beneficial component.
The fourth 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 fifth ingredient includes salmon, an oily marine and freshwater fish not only high in protein but also omega 3 fatty acids, essential oils needed by every dog to sustain life.
The sixth ingredient lists dried egg whites. Eggs are highly digestible and an excellent source of usable protein.
The seventh ingredient includes carrots, which are rich in beta-carotene, minerals and dietary fiber.
The eighth 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 ninth ingredient lists 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.
The next item is tomato, a nutrient rich vegetable consisting of about 72% carbohydrates.
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 Pure Balance product.
With 4 notable exceptions…
First, 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, 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.
In addition, this recipe includes garlic, which 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.3
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.
And lastly, this food includes 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.
Based on its ingredients alone, Pure Balance wet dog food looks like an above-average wet product.
The dashboard displays a dry matter protein reading of 44%, a fat level of 22% and estimated carbohydrates of about 25%.
As a group, the brand features an average protein content of 43% and a mean fat level of 27%. Together, these figures suggest a carbohydrate content of 22% for the overall product line.
And a fat-to-protein ratio of about 61%.
Which means this Pure Balance product line contains…
Above-average protein. Above-average fat. And below-average carbs when compared to other wet dog foods.
Even when you consider the protein-boosting effect of the peas and flaxseed, this looks like the profile of a wet product containing a significant amount of meat.
Is Pure Balance a Good Dog Food?
Pure Balance includes both grain-inclusive and grain-free wet dog foods using a significant amount of named meats as their dominant source of animal protein, thus earning the brand 5 stars.
Has Pure Balance Dog Food Been Recalled?
The following automated list (if present) includes all dog food recalls since 2009 related to Pure Balance.
No recalls noted.
You can view a complete list of all dog food recalls since 2009 here.
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More Pure Balance Reviews
The following Pure Balance dog food reviews are also posted on this website:
A Final Word
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- “Last Update” field at the end of this review reflects the last time we attempted to visit this product’s website. The current review itself was last updated 09/07/2020 ↩
- Association of American Feed Control Officials ↩
- 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) ↩
03/17/2022 Last Update