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Wag Dog Food Review (Dry)

Wag Dry Dog Food

Rating:

Which Wag Recipes Get
Our Best Ratings?

Wag Dog Food receives the Advisor’s second-highest rating of 4.5 stars.

The Wag product line includes the 13 dry 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
Wag Chicken and Lentil Recipe All Life Stages 4 A
Wag Chicken and Lentil for Puppies 4 A
Wag Beef and Lentil Recipe with Wild Boar 4 M
Wag Salmon and Lentil Recipe 4 A
Wag Turkey and Lentil Recipe 4 M
Wag Lamb and Lentil Recipe 4 A
Wag Beef and Sweet Potato 4.5 A
Wag Chicken and Sweet Potato 4.5 A
Wag Salmon and Sweet Potato 4.5 A
Wag Chicken and Brown Rice Wholesome Grains 4 A
Wag Salmon and Brown Rice Wholesome Grains 4 A
Wag Lamb and Brown Rice Wholesome Grains 4 A
Wag Beef and Brown Rice Wholesome Grains 4 A

Recipe and Label Analysis

Wag Turkey and Lentil 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.


Wag Turkey and Lentil Recipe

Dry Dog Food

Estimated Dry Matter Nutrient Content

Protein = 39% | Fat = 17% | Carbs = 36%

Ingredients: Turkey, turkey meal, lentils, pea protein, peas, chicken fat (preserved with mixed tocopherols), brewers yeast, dried plain beet pulp, flaxseed, natural flavor, salmon oil, calcium carbonate, salt, choline chloride, dried chicory root, Yucca schidigera extract, dried Lactobacillus plantarum fermentation product, dried Bacillus subtilis fermentation product, dried Enterociccus faecium fermentation product, dried Bifidobacterium animalis fermentation product, vitamin E supplement, iron proteinate, zinc proteinate, copper proteinate, ferrous sulfate, zinc sulfate, copper sulfate, potassium iodide, thiamine mononitrate (source of vitamin B1), manganese proteinate, manganous oxide, ascorbic acid (preservative), vitamin A supplement, biotin, niacin, calcium pantothenate, manganese sulfate, sodium selenite, pyridoxine hydrochloride (source of vitamin B6), vitamin B12 supplement, riboflavin (vitamin B2), vitamin D3 supplement, folic acid

Fiber (estimated dry matter content) = 5%

Red denotes controversial item

Estimated Nutrient Content
MethodProteinFatCarbs
Guaranteed Analysis35%15%NA
Dry Matter Basis39%17%36%
Calorie Weighted Basis34%35%31%
Protein = 34% | Fat = 35% | Carbs = 31%

Ingredient Analysis

The first ingredient in this dog food is turkey. Although it is a quality item, raw turkey 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 second ingredient is turkey meal. Turkey meal is considered a meat concentrate and contains nearly 300% more protein than fresh turkey.

The third ingredient includes lentils. Lentils are a quality source of carbohydrates. Plus (like all legumes) they’re rich in natural fiber.

However, lentils contain about 25% protein, a factor that must be considered when judging the actual meat content of this dog food.

The fourth ingredient is pea protein, what remains of a pea after removing the starchy part of the vegetable.

Even though it contains over 80% protein, this ingredient would be expected to have a lower biological value than meat.

And less costly plant-based products like this can notably boost the total protein reported on the label — a factor that must be considered when judging the meat content of this dog food.

The fifth 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 sixth ingredient is chicken fat. This item 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 next ingredient is brewers yeast, which can be a controversial item. Although it’s a by-product of the beer making process, this ingredient is rich in minerals and other healthy nutrients.

Fans believe yeast repels fleas and supports the immune system.

Critics argue yeast ingredients can be linked to allergies. This may be true, but (like all allergies) only if your particular dog is allergic to the yeast itself.

In addition, a vocal minority insists yeast can increase the risk of developing the life-threatening condition known as bloat. However, this is a claim we’ve not been able to scientifically verify.

In any case, unless your dog is specifically allergic to it, yeast can still be considered a nutritious additive.

What’s more noteworthy here is that brewers yeast contains about 48% protein, a factor that must be considered when judging the actual meat content of this dog food.

The eighth ingredient is beet pulp. Beet pulp is a controversial ingredient, a high fiber by-product of sugar beet processing.

Some denounce beet pulp as an inexpensive filler while others cite its outstanding intestinal health and blood sugar benefits.

We only call your attention here to the controversy and believe the inclusion of beet pulp in reasonable amounts in most dog foods is entirely acceptable.

The ninth ingredient is 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.

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 Wag product.

With 4 notable exceptions

First, we find 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, chicory root is rich in inulin, a starch-like compound made up of repeating units of carbohydrates and found in certain roots and tubers.

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.

In addition, this recipe contains sodium selenite, a controversial form of the mineral selenium. Sodium selenite appears to be nutritionally inferior to the more natural source of selenium found in selenium yeast.

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.

Nutrient Analysis

Based on its ingredients alone, Wag Dog Food looks like an above-average dry product.

The dashboard displays a dry matter protein reading of 39%, a fat level of 17% and estimated carbohydrates of about 36%.

As a group, the brand features an average protein content of 34% and a mean fat level of 16%. Together, these figures suggest a carbohydrate content of 42% for the overall product line.

And a fat-to-protein ratio of about 50%.

Which means this product contains…

Above-average protein. Near-average fat. And below-average carbs when compared to other kibbles.

However, when you consider the protein-boosting effect of the lentils, pea protein, peas, brewers yeast and flaxseed, this looks like the profile of a dry product containing just a notable amount of meat.

Our Rating of Wag Dry Dog Food

Wag includes both grain-free and grain-inclusive dry dog foods that utilize a notable amount of named meat meals as its dominant source of animal protein, thus earning the brand 4.5 stars.

Highly recommended.

Wag Dog Food Recall History

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

No recalls noted.

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

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A Final Word

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References

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