Nutrition - 10/10
Ingredients - 10/10
Extremely Satisfactory Nutrition High-Quality Meat Ingredients No By-products or Grains
A Full Review of Instinct Original – Real Beef by Nature’s Variety
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
Dogs use carbohydrates as a simple energy source. Dogs 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 4% of Nature’s Variety Instinct Original – Real Beef 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.
The proportion of carbohydrates present in this dog food is extremely low, so low in fact that it probably near zero and should be considered negligible. The lack of carbohydrates in this formula should not be considered a negative trait as dogs have no need for them.
Protein Content Analysis
Dogs use Protein for growth, development, and maintenance. Excess protein can be burned as calories. As the chart above displays, a minimum of 39% of Nature’s Variety Instinct Original – Real Beef 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 an extremely high level of protein. So high in fact that even the most active of dogs would have excess protein. However, overly high levels of protein are not necessarily a bad thing. The excess protein can be burned as calories which is what dog’s ancestors would have done. A range of red meat ingredients contributes to the vast majority of this protein. Red meat such as Beef is considered a high-quality source and will provide your dog with the full range of amino acids.
Fat Content Analysis
Dogs 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 57% of Nature’s Variety Instinct Original – Real Beef 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 high yet is still satisfactory and can provide dogs 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 Beef Fat are considered high-quality sources and are a natural part of a dog’s diet. Given the high proportion of fat, dogs who are overweight may want to carefully track their intake of a formula such as this.
Overall Nature’s Variety Instinct Original – Real Beef contains an average of 1,432 kcal/kg or 536 kcal/can – 13.2 oz
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 – Nature’s Variety Instinct Original – Real Beef
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) – 11.50%
- Crude Fat (Min) – 7.50%
- Crude Fiber (Max) – 3.00%
- Moisture (Max) – 78.00%
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.
- Beef Liver
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 dogs desperately need. Also, these ingredients would have made up the bulk of dogs ancestors diet. Therefore, the quality of a dog food formulas meat and fish ingredients is crucial. Nature’s Variety Instinct Original – Real Beef contains two sources of meat or fish.
The Primary meat source present is Beef. Beef is a considered a high-quality source of protein. In addition, Beef contains vitamins such as Iron and Zinc.
Beef Liver is considered a high-quality source of meat. Liver contains a much higher concentration of some nutrients than traditional meat cuts. Some of the nutrients present in Liver are Vitamin A, Vitamin B, and Iron. In addition to these nutrients Liver also contains a high amount of protein.
Eggs are a highly nutritious pet food ingredient and are considered a high-quality source of protein. Eggs contain a vast variety of vitamins and minerals including Vitamin A, Vitamin B2 and B12, Selenium, Phosphorus and many others. In addition to this, they contain a high proportion of protein and healthy fats such as the Omega 3 and 6 Fatty Acids.
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.
Salt, when added in moderation, is considered a beneficial ingredient. It enhances flavor, helps preserve the food and is important for maintaining healthy blood pressure and other bodily functions. However, some dogs, particularly those with cardiovascular problems may need to limit their consumption of Salt to avoid aggravating their health problems.
Flaxseed is a beneficial ingredient that is commonplace in higher quality dog food. Flaxseed contains high levels of the Omega 3 and 6 Fatty Acids which provide a range of health benefits such as healthier skin and fur and improved cognitive function. Also, Flaxseed contains high levels of protein for a plant-based ingredient. Finally, Flaxseed provides Lignans which can help reduce inflammation and cholesterol.
Full Ingredient List – Nature’s Variety Instinct Original – Real Beef
Beef, Beef Liver, Beef Broth, Tricalcium Phosphate, Ground Flaxseed, Montmorillonite Clay, Eggs, Peas, Carrots, Potassium Chloride, Salt, Minerals (Zinc Proteinate, Iron Proteinate, Copper Proteinate, Manganese Proteinate, Sodium Selenite, Cobalt Proteinate, Potassium Iodide), Choline Chloride, Vitamins (Vitamin E Supplement, Thiamine Mononitrate, Niacin Supplement, d-Calcium Pantothenate, Vitamin A Supplement, Riboflavin Supplement, Biotin, Vitamin B12 Supplement, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Vitamin D3 Supplement, Folic Acid), L-Abscorbyl-2-Polyphosphate, Menhaden Fish Oil (preserved with Mixed Tocopherols), Artichokes, Cranberries, Pumpkin, Tomato, Blueberries, Broccoli, Cabbage, Kale, Parsley