Nutrition - 10/10
Ingredients - 10/10
Merrick Grain Free Puppy Plate is a high-quality wet puppy food. It has significantly above average protein and fat proportion and a significantly below average carbohydrate proportion. The nutrition profile provided by this formula is very satisfactory and suitable for the majority of puppies. The formula contains a range of high-quality ingredients including a variety of poultry ingredients including Chicken, Turkey, and Duck. It contains a small number of vegetable ingredients such as Peas and Sweet Potatoes. These provide high-quality carbohydrates and fiber. The larger range of meat ingredients may make Merrick Grain Free Puppy Plate unsuitable for puppies with serious dietary sensitivities or allergies. However for those puppies without dietary issues, it is an extremely suitable wet dog food and will provide excellent nutrition from high-quality ingredients.
Very Satisfactory Nutrition High-Quality Meat and Vegetable Ingredients No Grains or By-Products
A Full Review of Grain Free Puppy Plate by Merrick
The ideal nutrition for a dog is entirely dependant on their unique circumstances. However, a high proportion of protein and fat combined with a lower proportion of carbohydrates is most appropriate nutrition profile for the vast majority of dogs. Dog’s are very capable of consuming a high proportion of carbohydrates, but a diet high in protein and fat is more appropriate and a better reflection of their natural ancestral diet.
Carbohydrate Content Analysis
Puppies use carbohydrates as a simple energy source. Puppies do not require significant carbohydrates in their diet and they are commonly added to reduce cost and increase shelf life. As the chart above displays, a maximum of 7% of Merrick Grain Free Puppy Plate calories are derived from carbohydrates. Please note that this is the maximum amount of carbohydrates as calculated by the guaranteed analysis. In reality, this value of carbohydrates is likely to be a lot lower. This is significantly below average for a Wet Dog Food.
This is a very low level of carbohydrates and very accurately mimics a dog’s natural carbohydrate intake. This carbohydrate proportion appears to be sourced from a very small portion of Peas and Sweet Potatoes. Both of these vegetables are considered high-quality sources of carbohydrates.
Protein Content Analysis
Puppies use Protein for growth, development, and maintenance. Excess protein can be burned as calories. As the chart above displays, a minimum of 42% of Merrick Grain Free Puppy Plate calories are derived from protein. Please note that this is the minimum amount of protein as calculated by the guaranteed analysis. In reality, this value of protein is likely to be higher. This is significantly above average for a Wet Dog Food.
This is a high level of protein which is very satisfactory for puppies of all activity levels including those who are very active. A range of poultry ingredients contributes to the vast majority of this protein. Poultry such as Chicken, Turkey, and Duck are considered high-quality sources and will provide your dog with the full range of amino acids needed for growth, repair, and maintenance.
Fat Content Analysis
Puppies use fat as a concentrated energy source. In addition, fats also play a role in development and maintenance. As the chart above displays, a minimum of 51% of Merrick Grain Free Puppy Plate calories are derived from Fat. Please note that this is the minimum amount of fat as calculated by the guaranteed analysis. In reality, this value of fat is likely to be a lot higher. This is significantly above average for a Wet Dog Food.
This level of fat is very satisfactory and can provide puppies of all activity levels with a highly concentrated source of energy. In addition, the vast majority of this fat content appears to be sourced from animal fats. Animal fats such as Chicken Fat or Duck Fat are considered high-quality sources and are a natural part of a dog’s diet.
Overall Merrick Grain Free Puppy Plate contains an average of 1031 kcal /kg or 390 kcal per 13.2.oz. can
Once again please note that the values in this section are calculated using the products guaranteed analysis. The guaranteed analysis only lists the minimum and maximum values and as a consequence, these can sometimes be an inaccurate representation. As a rule of thumb, most dog foods will contain slightly more protein and considerably more fat than their guaranteed analysis. This will have the knock-on effect of reducing the relative amount of carbohydrates present. However also note that every dog food is different and some will be considerably closer to the guaranteed analysis than others.
Guaranteed Analysis – Merrick Grain Free Puppy Plate
Pet foods in the United States are legally required by the AAFCO to have a guaranteed analysis on their packaging. A guaranteed analysis must display certain nutritional information. This is similar to how nutritional values are now commonly displayed on food for human consumption. The information that must be displayed includes Crude Protein, Crude Fat, Crude Fiber, and Moisture. Some guaranteed analysis will contain additional information. The guaranteed analysis for this product is listed below.
- Crude Protein (Min) – 10.30%
- Crude Fat (Min) – 5.50%
- Crude Fiber (Max) – 1.40%
- Moisture (Max) – 81.00%
The ingredients of pet food are disclosed on the packaging of the product as a list in descending order. Therefore the ingredients at the start of the list make up the bulk of the pet foods content. As a consequence, the quality of these primary ingredients is the most significant factor in determining the quality of pet food.
However, ingredients listed further down the ingredient list should not be ignored, especially if they could have adverse or harmful effects on a pet.
- Sweet Potatoes
Dangerous / Harmful Ingredients
In-Depth Meat/Fish Ingredient Review
The meat and fish ingredients of dog food are without a doubt the most important. They are critical as they provide the majority of the protein and fat that puppies desperately need. Also, these ingredients would have made up the bulk of pupupies ancestors diet. Therefore, the quality of a dog food formulas meat and fish ingredients is crucial. Merrick Grain Free Puppy Plate contains three sources of meat or fish.
The primary meat source present is Turkey. Turkey is a considered a high-quality source of protein. Some of the beneficial nutrients contained in Turkey include Vitamin B6 and Niacin.
The secondary meat source present is Chicken. Chicken is considered a high-quality source of protein. In addition to being a fantastic protein source, chicken has high levels of Niacin and Vitamin B6.
The tertiary meat source present is Duck. Duck is a considered a high-quality source of protein. It contains considerably higher levels of selenium and phosphorus than other meats.
In-Depth None-Meat Ingredient Review
Peas are a member of the legume family of vegetables. Legumes are famous for having a relatively high amount of protein for a vegetable. Legumes also contain a high amount of fiber, which is important for healthy digestion. Pet foods often use legumes as a replacement for grains in grain-free pet food. Protein from vegetables such as legumes should not be a replacement for protein from meat. Instead, it should act as an additional protein source.
Sweet Potatoes are a starchy vegetable and a source of complex carbohydrates. Sweet Potatoes are considered superior to traditional Potatoes as they contain more fiber and a more extensive range of vitamins and minerals. Some examples of vitamins and minerals that are abundant in Sweet Potatoes are Vitamin A, Vitamin C, and Calcium. The higher amount of fiber and the range of micronutrients in Sweet Potatoes mean that they are considered a high-quality ingredient despite containing mostly carbohydrates.
Full Ingredient List – Merrick Grain Free Puppy Plate
Deboned Turkey, Chicken Broth, Chicken, Duck, Peas, Sweet Potato, Carrots, Apples, Potato, Dried Egg Product, Natural Chicken Flavor, Carrageenan, Calcium Carbonate, Potassium Chloride, Vitamins (Choline Chloride, Vitamin E Supplement, Vitamin B12, d-Calcium Pantothenate, Vitamin A Supplement, Niacin, Vitamin D3 Supplement, Riboflavin, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Folic Acid, Biotin, Thiamine Mononitrate), Guar Gum, Salt, Sodium Phosphate, Cassia Gum, Canola Oil, Olive Oil, Flax Oil, Minerals (Zinc Amino Acid Complex, Iron Amino Acid Complex, Manganese Amino Acid Complex, Copper Amino Acid Complex, Potassium Iodide, Cobalt Glucoheptonate, Sodium Selenite), Thyme, Sage, Rosemary, Yucca Schidigera Extract, Lecithin.