SmallBatch Raw Frozen Dog Food (Raw Frozen)

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Rating: ★★★★★

SmallBatch raw frozen dog food receives the Advisor’s top rating of 5 stars.

The SmallBatch product line includes 6 raw, frozen dog foods. Some formulas are available as patties, sliders or small bites.

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.

  • SmallBatch Beef [U]
  • SmallBatch Rabbit [U]
  • SmallBatch Turkey [U]
  • SmallBatch Chicken [U]
  • SmallBatch Duck (3 stars) [U]
  • SmallBatch Lamb (4 stars) [U]

SmallBatch Lamb was selected to represent the other products in the line for this review.

SmallBatch Lamb

Raw Dog Food

Estimated Dry Matter Nutrient Content

Protein = 49% | Fat = 37% | Carbs = 6%

Ingredients: Lamb hearts, lamb, lamb bone, lamb livers, lamb kidneys, lamb spleens, organic squash, organic celery, organic bok choy, organic cauliflower, organic green beans, salmon oil, organic dandelion greens, organic apple cider vinegar, organic kelp, organic cilantro, organic bee pollen, organic wheat grass, organic bilberry, organic garlic, organic oregano, organic thyme

Fiber (estimated dry matter content) = 1.8%

Red items indicate controversial ingredients

Estimated Nutrient Content
MethodProteinFatCarbs
Guaranteed Analysis16%12%NA
Dry Matter Basis49%37%6%
Calorie Weighted Basis34%62%4%
Protein = 34% | Fat = 62% | Carbs = 4%

The first ingredient in this dog food is lamb heart. Although it doesn’t sound very appetizing to us humans, heart tissue is pure muscle — all meat. It’s naturally rich in quality protein, minerals and complex B vitamins, too.

The second ingredient is lamb. Lamb is considered “the clean flesh derived from slaughtered” lamb and associated with skeletal muscle or the muscle tissues of the tongue, diaphragm, heart or esophagus.1

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

The third ingredient is lamb bone, an excellent source of natural calcium.

The fourth ingredient lists lamb liver. This is an organ meat sourced from a named animal and thus considered a beneficial component.

The fifth item is lamb kidney, an organ meat low in fat and rich in protein and essential minerals.

The sixth ingredient is lamb spleen, an organ meat sourced from a named animal and thus considered a positive addition to this recipe.

The seventh ingredient is squash. Squash is a nutritious addition high in complex carbohydrates, 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 product.

With four notable exceptions

First, salmon 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, salmon oil should be considered a commendable addition.

Next, garlic 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.2

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.

In addition, wheat grass is prized for its vitamin and mineral content. Yet unlike wheat, wheat grass is gluten-free. So, please ignore our software’s unfavorable treatment of this nutritious ingredient.

And lastly, we find no added vitamins or minerals on the ingredients list. We would assume these essential nutrients are provided by the food ingredients in the recipe.

SmallBatch Raw Frozen Dog Food
The Bottom Line

Judging by its ingredients alone, SmallBatch raw frozen dog food looks like an above-average raw 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 49%, a fat level of 37% and estimated carbohydrates of about 6%.

As a group, the brand features an average protein content of 52% and a mean fat level of 31%. Together, these figures suggest a carbohydrate content of 9% for the overall product line.

And a fat-to-protein ratio of about 60%.

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

Free of any plant-based protein boosters, this looks like the profile of a raw product containing an abundance of meat.

However, with 62% of the total calories in our example coming from fat versus just 34% from protein, some recipes may not be suitable for every animal.

Bottom line?

SmallBatch is a meat-based raw dog food using a generous amount of named meats as its main sources 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.

SmallBatch 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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Dog Food Coupons
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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.

The Dog Food Advisor does not test dog food products.

We rely entirely on the integrity of the information provided by each company on its product label or its website. As such, the accuracy of every review is directly dependent upon the data a company chooses to share.

Although it's our goal to ensure all the information on this website is correct, we cannot guarantee its completeness or its accuracy; nor can we commit to ensuring all the material is kept up-to-date on a daily basis.

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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.

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This policy helps support the operation of our website and keeps access to all our content completely free to the public.

In any case, please be assured it is always our intention to remain objective, impartial and unbiased when conducting our analysis.

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

Notes and Updates

09/08/2018 Last Update

  1. Adapted by the Dog Food Advisor and based upon the official definition for beef published by the Association of American Feed Control Officials, 2008 Edition
  2. 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)
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