Review of WholeHearted Grain Free Canned Dog Food
WholeHearted Grain Free canned dog food receives the Advisor’s top rating of 5 stars.
The WholeHearted Grain Free product line includes the 23 moisture-rich dog foods listed below.
Each recipe includes its AAFCO nutrient profile when available… Growth (puppy), Maintenance (adult), All Life Stages, Supplemental or Unspecified.
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Recipe and Label Analysis
WholeHearted Grain Free Easy Digestion Boiled Chicken Dinner 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.
WholeHearted Grain Free Easy Digestion Boiled Chicken Dinner
Canned Dog Food
Estimated Dry Matter Nutrient Content
Ingredients: Chicken, chicken broth, water, carrots, pumpkin, tapioca starch, sunflower oil, calcium sulfate, salt, guar gum, sodium acid pyrophosphate, fructooligosaccharides, tuna oil, potassium chloride, magnesium sulfate, choline chloride, vitamin E supplement, zinc oxide, reduced iron, sodium selenite, manganese sulfate, vitamin B12 supplement, vitamin A supplement, copper amino acid complex, niacin supplement, calcium pantothenate, thiamine mononitrate, biotin, riboflavin supplement, potassium iodide, pyridoxine hydrochloride, vitamin D3 supplement, beta-carotene, folic acid
Fiber (estimated dry matter content) = 6.7%
Red denotes controversial item
|Estimated Nutrient Content|
|Dry Matter Basis||53%||13%||25%|
|Calorie Weighted Basis||48%||29%||23%|
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 chicken broth. Broths are of only modest nutritional value. Yet because they add both flavor and moisture to a dog food, they are a common component in many canned products.
The next ingredient is water, which adds nothing but moisture to this food. Water is a routine finding in most canned dog foods.
The fourth ingredient includes carrots, which are rich in beta-carotene, minerals and dietary fiber.
The fifth ingredient lists pumpkin. Pumpkin is a nutritious addition high in complex carbohydrates, beta-carotene and dietary fiber.
The sixth ingredient is tapioca starch, a gluten-free, starchy carbohydrate extract made from the root of the cassava plant.
The seventh ingredient is sunflower oil. 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.
The eighth ingredient is calcium sulfate, a source of supplemental calcium.
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 WholeHearted product.
With 3 notable exceptions…
First, we find fructooligosaccharide, an alternative sweetener2 probably used here as a prebiotic. Prebiotics function to support the growth of healthy bacteria in the large intestine.
Next, this product includes tuna oil. Fish 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, fish oil should be considered a commendable addition.
And lastly, with the exception of copper, the minerals listed here do not appear to be chelated. And that can make them more difficult to absorb. Chelated minerals are usually associated with higher quality dog foods.
Judging by its ingredients alone, WholeHearted Grain Free looks like an above-average wet dog food.
As a group, the brand features an average protein content of 44% and a mean fat level of 24%. Together, these figures suggest a carbohydrate content of 24% for the overall product line.
And a fat-to-protein ratio of about 54%.
Which means this WholeHearted product line contains…
Above-average protein. Near-average fat. And below-average carbs when compared to a typical wet dog food.
Free of any plant-based protein boosters, this looks like the profile of a wet product containing a significant amount of meat.
Our Rating of WholeHearted Grain Free Wet Dog Food
WholeHearted Grain Free is a moisture-rich dog food using a significant amount of named meats as its dominant source of animal protein, thus earning the product line 5 stars.
Has WholeHearted Brand Dog Food Been Recalled?
The following automated list (if present) includes all dog food recalls since 2009 related to WholeHearted.
No recalls noted.
You can view a complete list of all dog food recalls since 2009 here.
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More WholeHearted Brand Reviews
The following WholeHearted dog food reviews are also posted on this website:
A Final Word
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Important FDA Alert
The FDA is investigating a potential link between diet and heart disease in dogs. Click here for details.
05/10/2021 Last Update