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natural choice dog food reviews | Topdeblogs

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Nutro Dog Food Sub-Brands Review

Is Nutro a good dog food?

In this review… The Dog Food Advisor takes a detailed look at Nutro Dog Food… and its seven most important sub-brands.

We’ll also share…

  1. Is Nutro Dog Food made in the United States?
  2. Has Nutro been recalled?
  3. Which flavors and recipes get our top ratings?

But first…

Which Nutro Sub-Brand Is Right for You?

In the following section, you’ll find Nutro’s 7 most important product lines. We’ll share what makes each sub-brand different. So, you can choose the food that’s best for your dog.

A Quick Guide to Nutro’s Sub-Brands

Still not sure which Nutro sub-brand is right for you? This short video from Chewy can help. The grain-free dry recipe mentioned in the video is no longer available. And Wholesome Essentials has been renamed as Nutro Natural Choice.

Who Makes Nutro Dog Food?

The Nutro Company was founded in 1933 and was acquired by Mars Petcare in 2007. Its offices are located in Franklin, Tennessee.

Dry foods are produced at 2 company-owned facilities… one in Henderson, North Carolina and the other in Victorville, California. Wet recipes are manufactured at Nutro facilities in Columbus, Ohio, Fort Smith, Arkansas and North Sioux City, South Dakota.

Mars also owns the prestigious Waltham Petcare Science Institute in Leicestershire, England.

Has Nutro Dog Food Been Recalled?

Here’s a list of all recalls since 2009 related to Nutro dog products. Updates are added as soon as new recalls are posted.

  • Nutro Dog Treats Recall of December 2015 (12/13/2015)
  • Nutro Dog Food Recall (10/4/2009)

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

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Is Nutro a Good Dog Food?

Nutro Natural Choice Small Breed Adult Dog Food

Rating:

Nutro Natural Choice earns the Advisor’s second-highest tier rating of 4 stars.

Individual Recipe Ratings

The Nutro Natural Choice product line includes 19 dry dog foods.

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

Use the following links to check prices at an online retailer. If you make a purchase through these links, we may earn a referral fee. This helps cover the cost of operation of our free blog. Thanks for your support.

Product Rating AAFCO Nutro Natural Choice Adult Lamb and Brown Rice 3.5 M Nutro Natural Choice Senior Lamb and Brown Rice 4.5 M Nutro Natural Choice Adult Chicken and Brown Rice 3.5 M Nutro Natural Choice Senior Chicken Chicken and Brown Rice 4.5 M Nutro Natural Choice Adult Venison Meal and Brown Rice 3.5 M Nutro Natural Choice Adult Small Bites Lamb and Brown Rice 3.5 M Nutro Natural Choice Puppy Chicken and Brown Rice 5 G Nutro Natural Choice Adult Small Bites Chicken and Brown Rice 3.5 M Nutro Natural Choice Adult Healthy Weight Lamb and Brown Rice 4.5 M Nutro Natural Choice Small Breed Senior Chicken and Brown Rice 5 M Nutro Natural Choice Large Breed Senior Chicken and Brown Rice 3.5 M Nutro Natural Choice Large Breed Adult Lamb and Brown Rice 3 M Nutro Natural Choice Large Breed Puppy Lamb and Brown Rice 5 G Nutro Natural Choice Small Breed Adult Chicken and Brown Rice 4.5 M Nutro Natural Choice Adult Large Breed Chicken and Brown Rice 3 M Nutro Natural Choice Large Breed Healthy Weight Chicken and Brown Rice 4.5 M Nutro Natural Choice Large Breed Puppy Chicken and Brown Rice 4.5 G Nutro Natural Choice Adult Healthy Weight Chicken and Brown Rice 4.5 M Nutro Natural Choice Adult Beef and Brown Rice 3.5 M

Recipe and Label Analysis

Nutro Natural Choice Adult Small Breed Chicken and Brown Rice 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.

Ingredient Analysis

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

The third ingredient is barley. Barley is a starchy carbohydrate supplying fiber and other healthy nutrients. However, aside from its energy content, this cereal grain is of only modest nutritional value to a dog.

The fourth ingredient includes 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.

Next, we find brewers rice. Brewers rice is a cereal grain by-product consisting of the small fragments left over after milling whole rice. Aside from the caloric energy it contains, this item is of only modest nutritional value to a dog.

The next ingredient is brown rice, a complex carbohydrate that (once cooked) can be fairly easy to digest. However, aside from its natural energy content, rice is of only modest nutritional value to a dog.

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.

After the natural flavor, we find rice bran, a healthy by-product of milling whole grain rice. The bran is the fiber-rich outer layer of the grain containing starch, protein, fat as well as vitamins and minerals.

Other Notable Ingredients

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 Nutro 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 inclusion of 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.

Next, we find chia seed, an edible seed nutritionally similar to flax or sesame. Provided they’re first ground into a meal, chia seeds are rich in both omega-3 fatty acids as well as dietary fiber.

However, chia seeds contain about 17% protein, a factor that must also be considered when judging the amount of meat in this recipe.

We find no mention of probiotics, friendly bacteria applied to the surface of the kibble after processing to help with digestion.

And lastly, 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.

Nutrient Summary

Based on its ingredients alone, Nutro Natural Choice appears to be an above-average dry dog food.

The dashboard displays a dry matter protein reading of 27%, a fat level of 18% and estimated carbohydrates of about 48%.

As a group, the brand features an average protein content of 26% and a mean fat level of 14%. Together, these figures suggest a carbohydrate content of 52% for the overall product line.

And a fat-to-protein ratio of about 53%.

Which means this Nutro product line contains…

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

Even when you consider the protein-boosting effect of the peas and flaxseed, this looks like the profile of a kibble containing a moderate amount of meat.

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

Even when you consider the protein-boosting effect of the peas and flaxseed, this looks like the profile of a kibble containing a moderate amount of meat.

Our Rating of Nutro Dog Food

The Dog Food Advisor finds Nutro to be a quality, grain-inclusive kibble. Each Natural Choice recipe uses a blend of fresh meat and meat meals as its main sources of animal protein… thus earning the brand 4 stars. Ultra dry recipes earn 4.5 stars.

Highly recommended.

What Do Others Say About Nutro?

As of the time of this update…

Chewy customers rate Nutro Dog Food 4.7 out of 5 stars… and 97% say they would recommend it to others.

Here’s an actual user review

Sample buyer review… “I really loved this food. Highly nutritious. Great price! I have 4 dogs who took to this food with a great liking after being on diamond brands for quite some time. No digestive upset during transition. They eat less and have less of the need to defecate and that is of well also. ( to put in nice terms). I highly recommend.”

Read more buyer reviews at topdeblogs.com

What Are Nutro’s Best Recipes?

Based on the weighted average of their popularity and ratings, here are our 6 most recommended Nutro flavors and recipes.

  • Nutro Natural Choice Large Breed Adult Farm Raised Chicken
  • Nutro Natural Choice Large Breed Adult Lamb and Rice
  • Nutro Ultra Large Breed Adult Dry Dog Food
  • Nutro Natural Choice Small Bites Adult Lamb and Rice Dry
  • Nutro Natural Choice Small Breed Adult Farm Raised Chicken, Brown Rice and Sweet Potato Dry
  • Nutro Ultra Adult Dry

More Nutro Reviews

Here are more Nutro dog food reviews published by The Dog Food Advisor on this website.

  • Nutro Cuts in Gravy Dog Food Review (Cups)
  • Nutro Hearty Stew Dog Food Review (Canned)
  • Nutro Limited Ingredient Diet Dog Food Review (Canned)
  • Nutro Limited Ingredient Diets Dog Food Review (Dry)
  • Nutro Pate Dog Food Review (Cups)
  • Nutro Premium Loaf Dog Food Review (Canned)
  • Nutro Puppy Food Review (Cups)
  • Nutro Ultra Dog Food Review (Dry)
  • Nutro Ultra Grain-Free Dog Food Review (Tubs)
  • Nutro Wholesome Essentials Dog Food Review (Dry)
  • Wild Frontier Dog Food Review (Trays)

A Final Word

The Dog Food Advisor is privately owned. We do not accept money, gifts, samples or other incentives in exchange for special consideration in preparing our reviews.

However, we do receive a referral fee from online retailers (like Chewy or Amazon) and from sellers of perishable pet food when readers click over to their websites from ours. This helps cover the cost of operation of our free blog. Thanks for your support.

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.

References

03/16/2021 Last Update

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