Stewart Raw Naturals Dog Food Review (Freeze-Dried)

Rating:

Stewart Raw Naturals Dog Food receives the Advisor’s top rating of 5 stars.

The Stewart Raw Naturals product line includes 8 freeze-dried raw 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.

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.

Use the links below to check prices and package sizes at an online retailer.

Stewart Raw Naturals Fresh to Home Chicken recipe was selected to represent the other products in the line for this review.

Stewart Raw Naturals Fresh to Home Chicken

Freeze-Dried Dog Food

Estimated Dry Matter Nutrient Content

Protein = 47% | Fat = 27% | Carbs = 17%

Ingredients: Chicken, ground chicken bone, chicken liver, chicken gizzard, cantaloupe, carrots, broccoli, lettuce, egg, ground flaxseed, inulin, salmon oil, apple cider vinegar, blueberry, cranberry, dried kelp, potassium chloride, sodium chloride, whole ginger, whole parsley, whole garlic, zinc proteinate, iron proteinate, vitamin E supplement, copper proteinate, manganese proteinate, mixed tocopherols (as preservative), vitamin D supplement

Fiber (estimated dry matter content) = 6.3%

Red denotes controversial item

Estimated Nutrient Content
MethodProteinFatCarbs
Guaranteed Analysis45%26%NA
Dry Matter Basis47%27%17%
Calorie Weighted Basis36%51%13%
Protein = 36% | Fat = 51% | Carbs = 13%

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.

The second ingredient is ground chicken bone, an excellent source of natural calcium.

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

The fourth ingredient is chicken gizzard. The gizzard is a low-fat, meaty organ found in the digestive tract of birds and assists in grinding up a consumed food. This item is considered a canine dietary delicacy.

The fifth ingredient lists cantaloupe. Cantaloupe contains dietary fiber, niacin, folic acid as well as vitamins A, B6, C and potassium. Its Nutrient Completeness Score2 is 62.

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

The seventh ingredient is broccoli. Broccoli is a healthy green vegetable and a member of the kale family. It’s notably rich in vitamin C and fiber and numerous other nutrients.

Like other cruciferous vegetables, broccoli is believed to provide anti-cancer benefits.

The eighth ingredient is lettuce. This green leafy vegetable is naturally rich in vitamins and minerals. In fact, lettuce boasts an exceptionally high nutrient Completeness Score3 of 88.

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 six notable exceptions

First, we find eggs. Eggs are easy to digest and have an exceptionally high biological value.

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, we note the inclusion of inulin, a starch-like compound made up of repeating units of carbohydrates and typically sourced from chicory root.

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.

We also note the use of salmon oil. 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.4

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 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.

Stewart Raw Naturals Dog Food Review

Judging by its ingredients alone, Stewart Raw Naturals 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 46%, a fat level of 31% and estimated carbohydrates of about 15%.

As a group, the brand features an average protein content of 46% and a mean fat level of 31%. Together, these figures suggest a carbohydrate content of 15% for the overall product line.

And a fat-to-protein ratio of about 67%.

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

Even when you consider the protein-boosting effect of the flaxseed, this looks like the profile of a raw product containing a significant amount of meat.

Bottom line?

Stewart Raw Naturals is a grain-free freeze-dried dog food using a generous amount of named meats and organs as its main 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.

Stewart Dog Food
Recall History

The following list (if present) includes all dog food recalls since 2009 directly related to Stewart Raw Naturals. 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.

A Final Word

The Dog Food Advisor is privately owned and is not affiliated (in any way) with pet food manufacturers. We do not accept money, gifts, samples or other incentives in exchange for special consideration in preparing our reviews.

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For more information, please visit our Disclaimer and Disclosure page.

Important FDA Alert

The FDA is investigating a potential link between diet and heart disease in dogs. Click here for details.

Notes and Updates

  1. Association of American Feed Control Officials
  2. Completeness Score is a measure of a food’s relative nutrient content and is computed by NutritionData.com from the USDA’s National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference
  3. Completeness Score is a measure of a food’s relative nutrient content and is computed by NutritionData.com from the USDA’s National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference
  4. 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)

07/12/2019 Last Update