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Dog Food Insiders Rating
3 1/2 PAWS
You can find detailed information about WellPet LLC, manufacturer of Holistic Select pet food, in our longer review of Holistic Select Adult Health Duck Meal Dry Dog Food. There you will also find information about how the food is made, recalls, and their quality control. These mini reviews are designed to cover other foods produced by the same company using the same philosophy. Mini reviews provide some information about the main ingredients and any ingredients that stand out, the guaranteed analysis, and any special concerns about each food.
According to their company statements, Holistic Select emphasizes the role that “digestive health” plays in “whole-body” health. They claim that Holistic Select is “the only natural pet food that offers a complete digestive balance system to help your pet absorb and utilize all nutrients.” They say their food provides guaranteed levels of digestive enzymes and botanicals; prebiotics; probiotics; and natural fiber. With recipes for dogs and cats, Holistic Select says their food features “high-quality, natural meats, fats and whole grains.” They have kibble, canned food, biscuits, and digestive aids.
Ingredients in Holistic Select Duck & Chicken Canned Dog Food
Duck, Duck Broth, Chicken, Oatmeal, Dried Egg Product, Flaxseed, Carrots, Peas, Potatoes, Guar Gum, Potassium Chloride, Carrageenan, Cranberry Powder, Dried Kelp, Vitamins [Vitamin E, A, B12, D3 Supplements, Thiamine Mononitrate, Biotin, Riboflavin Supplement], Minerals [Ferrous Sulfate, Zinc Oxide, Copper Proteinate, Manganous Sulfate, Potassium Iodide, Sodium Selenite], Choline Chloride, Blueberry Powder, Lecithin, Yucca Schidigera Extract, Marigold Extract.
Holistic Select Duck & Chicken Canned Dog Food is 78 percent moisture which is the maximum amount of moisture that can be contained in a canned food unless it is labeled “stew” or “gravy” or something similar, in which case it can contain even more liquid. It’s necessary to calculate the dry matter basis of canned foods in order to make a meaningful comparison of their contents with other foods, especially with dry foods. You can find the dry matter basis of this food in the Guaranteed Analysis section below. Overall, this food appears to have a good meat protein content and a moderate amount of fat. Carbs are relatively low. The fiber content appears to be a little high.
Top Ingredients Breakdown
Two of the first three ingredients in the food are meat protein: duck andchicken; and the other ingredient is duck broth. Duck broth adds few nutrients to the food but canned foods requires liquid and this is better than water. Plus it adds flavor to the food. Duck and chicken are good sources of meat protein for dogs. Duck provides a wide range of vitamins and minerals as well as lots of omega-6 fatty acid. Chicken is a good source of Vitamin B6 and Phosphorus, and a very good source of Niacin and Selenium.
The food also features dried egg product which adds protein. Eggs have high bioavilability so their nutrients are easy for dogs to digest and absorb.
The food also contains oatmeal as the fourth ingredient. Oatmeal is digested slowly and it’s a good dietary fiber. It’s also a good source of Phosphorus and Selenium, and a very good source of Manganese.
Additional Ingredients of Interest
The food also contains Flaxseed, Carrots, Peas and Potatoes as sources of fiber and carbohydrates. Flaxseed has many benefits for dogs. It’s a good source of dietary fiber and it’s a good plant source of omega-3 fatty acid. It is also a good source of Magnesium, Phosphorus and Copper, and a very good source of Thiamin and Manganese. However, be careful feeding it to female dogs if you intend to breed them in the near future. Flaxseed is a phytoestrogen and it can interfere with the reproductive system.
Peas are a natural source of vitamin K and they are also a good source of Vitamin A, Niacin, Vitamin B6, Folate, Phosphorus and Copper, and a very good source of dietary fiber, Vitamin C, Thiamin and Manganese. They are also a source of protein (23-27 percent). However, some dogs have problems digesting them and they can cause diarrhea and other gastrointestinal issues.
Potatoes are another source of dietary fiber. They are also 92 percent carbohydrates. Potatoes are a good source of Vitamin C, Vitamin B6, Potassium and Manganese.
The food also includes a couple of thickening agents – guar gum and carrageenan. Guar gum is made from guar beans. Only a small amount is needed for thickening. It has almost eight times the water thickening potency of cornstarch. Carrageenan is made from various kinds of seaweed. Although it has been used for hundreds of years it has recently become a much more controversial ingredient because some research suggests that it is connected to gastrointestinal irritation (read more). Carrageenan is mainly used in meat and dairy products, as well as animal feeds. Should you avoid feeding your dog a canned food that contains this ingredient? I would say that if your dog has any kind of stomach or intestinal issues, or is prone to having a sensitive stomach of any kind, you should avoid foods that contain carrageenan. Otherwise, the small amount of carrageenan in a can of dog food probably won’t harm your dog. I would say it’s not a desirable ingredient but most dog foods have one or two ingredients that are not idea. Sometimes you have to choose the lesser of the evils in the dog food aisle.
The food also contains Lecithin which is an added fat. The only problem with this ingredient is that you don’t know the source of the fat. Sometimes it is derived from soy, for example. Most dogs won’t be bothered by soy lecithin, even if they are allergic to soy, but if you have a dog who is highly allergic to soy, it’s possible that he could have a reaction. The same is true if your dog is allergic to lecithin derived from egg yolks. (Oh, you bet, we are getting into GMO territory here.)
I really don’t know why this food contains marigold extract (calendula) but Holistic Select is not the only dog food company that adds it. An estimated 3 percent of dog food companies use this ingredient. It contains lutein, an antioxidant carotenoid, but so do many yellow fruits and vegetables that don’t have the negative effects of marigold. Marigold can cause allergic reactions in humans such as rashes, itching, swelling, and more. In animal studies it produced a tightening effect on the uterus, problems for fertilized eggs, and other problems. If you breed dogs you should avoid this ingredient.
The food also contains added vitamins and minerals. You should note that there is one proteinated mineral added (Copper Proteinate). The other minerals are ordinary minerals and mineral compounds. The food also contains the mineral compound Sodium Selenite. This ingredient has come under some scrutiny but it has been used in the U.S. for over 30 years without any problems and it appears to be safe.
- Crude Protein (min.) 8.5%
- Crude Fat (min.) 5.0%
- Crude Fiber (max.) 1.5%
- Moisture (max.) 78.0%
This food contains 1,450 kcal/kg or 535 kcal/can ME (metabolizable energy) on an as fed basis (calculated). A can is 13.5 ounces. The food contains 317 calories per 8 ounce cup.
Holistic Select® Duck & Chicken Recipe Dog Food is formulated to meet the nutritional levels established by the AAFCO Dog Food Nutrient Profiles formaintenance.
Dry Matter Basis
By dry matter basis this food contains approximately 38.6 percent protein and 22.7 percent fat. It has about 6.8 percent fiber and 13.6 percent carbohydrates.
Holistic Select Duck & Chicken Canned Dog Food contains good meat protein and a good source of carbohydrates and dietary fiber. A few of the ingredients may cause you to hesitate about the food such as carrageenan, peas, and an overall lack of chelated minerals. This food is not recommended if you breed dogs (flaxseed, marigold extract make it potentially harmful for dogs you might breed). An above average food with some issues.
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