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SquarePet Dog Food Review (Dry)

Mike Sagman  Julia Ogden

By

Mike Sagman
Mike Sagman

Mike Sagman

Founder

Dr Mike Sagman is the creator of the Dog Food Advisor. He founded the website in 2008, after his unquestioning trust in commercial dog food led to the tragic death of his dog Penny.

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&
Julia Ogden
Julia Ogden

Julia Ogden

Content Director

Julia is the content director at the Dog Food Advisor and responsible for the overall strategy of the website.

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Updated: June 10, 2024

Verified by Laura Ward

Laura Ward

Laura Ward

Pet Nutritionist

Laura studied BSc (Hons) Animal Science with an accreditation in Nutrition at the University of Nottingham, before working for eight years in the pet food and nutrition industry.

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Laura Ward

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Rating:
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star
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Which SquarePet Recipes Get Our Best Ratings?

SquarePet Dog Food earns The Advisor’s top rating of 5 stars.

The SquarePet product line includes the 10 dry dog foods listed below.

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

Recipe and Label Analysis

SquarePet Turkey and Chicken Grain Free 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.


SquarePet Turkey and Chicken Grain Free

Estimated Dry Matter Nutrient Content

45.6%

Protein

23.3%

Fat

23.1%

CarbsCarbohydrates

Turkey, chicken, whole egg, turkey meal, chicken meal, salmon meal, chicken fat preserved with mixed tocopherols, tapioca, miscanthus grass, flaxseed, natural chicken flavor, apples, tomatoes, carrots, salmon oil source of DHA, cottage cheese, Jerusalem artichoke, dicalcium phosphate, potassium chloride, vitamin A supplement, vitamin D3 supplement, vitamin E supplement, niacin supplement, d-calcium pantothenate, riboflavin supplement, thiamine mononitrate, pyridoxine hydrochloride, biotin, vitamin B12 supplement, folic acid, salt, choline chloride, taurine, ascorbic acid source of vitamin C, dl-methionine, dried kelp, l-carnitine, zinc proteinate, iron proteinate, copper proteinate, manganese proteinate, calcium iodate, selenium yeast, dried Bacillus coagulans fermentation product, rosemary extract


Fiber (estimated dry matter content) = 3.5%

Red denotes any controversial items

Estimated Nutrient Content
Method Protein Fat Carbs
Guaranteed Analysis 41% 21% NA
Dry Matter Basis 46% 23% 23%
Calorie Weighted Basis 36% 45% 18%

Ingredient Analysis

The first two ingredients in this dog food are turkey and chicken. Although they are quality items, raw poultry contains up to 73% 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 third ingredient is whole egg. Eggs are easy to digest and have an exceptionally high biological value.

The next two ingredients are turkey meal and chicken meal. Poultry meals are considered meat concentrates and contain nearly 300% more protein than fresh poultry.

The sixth ingredient is salmon meal, yet another protein-rich meat concentrate.

Fish meal is typically obtained from the “clean, dried, ground tissue of undecomposed whole fish and fish cuttings” of commercial fish operations.1

The seventh ingredient is chicken fat. Chicken fat is obtained from rendering chicken, a process similar to making soup in which the fat itself is skimmed from the surface of the liquid.

Chicken fat is high in linoleic acid, an omega-6 fatty acid essential for life. Although it doesn’t sound very appetizing, chicken fat is actually a quality ingredient.

The eighth ingredient is tapioca, a gluten-free, starchy carbohydrate extract made from the root of the cassava plant.

The ninth ingredient is miscanthus grass, also known as elephant grass. Miscanthus is a non-GMO source of crude 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 5 notable exceptions

First, we find flaxseed, 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.

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.

In addition, 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.

Next, we note the inclusion of dried fermentation products in this recipe. Fermentation products are typically added as probiotics to aid with digestion.

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

Nutrient Analysis

Based on its ingredients alone, SquarePet looks like an above-average dry dog food.

The dashboard displays a dry matter protein reading of 46%, a fat level of 23% and estimated carbohydrates of about 23%.

As a group, the brand features an average protein content of 30% and a mean fat level of 16%. Together, these figures suggest a carbohydrate content of 47% for the overall product line.

And a fat-to-protein ratio of about 55%.

Near-average protein. Near-average fat. And near-average carbs when compared to a typical dry dog food.

Even when you consider the protein-boosting effect of the flaxseed, this still looks like the profile of a dry dog food containing a significant amount of meat.

Our Rating of SquarePet Dog Food

SquarePet includes both grain-free and grain-inclusive dry dog foods using a significant amount of named meat meal as its main source of animal protein, thus earning the brand 5 stars.

Enthusiastically recommended.

SquarePet Dog Food Recall History

The following automated list (if present) includes all dog food recalls related to SquarePet through June.

No recalls noted.

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

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Sources

1: Association of American Feed Control Officials

A Final Word

The Dog Food Advisor does not accept money, gifts, samples or other incentives in exchange for special consideration in preparing our reviews.

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