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Blue Basics Grain Free Adult Duck and Potato Recipe
three and a half stars

To get more information on Blue Buffalo dog food, the company, and recall history, go to the Blue Buffalo Dog Food Review page. Or, to read reviews of other dry dog foods, find it at the Dry Dog Food Review page.

From the Blue Buffalo Website:

Grain-free BLUE Basics is a limited-ingredient diet formulated to minimize food sensitivities that some dogs experience while maximizing the nutritional value they receive. BLUE Basics contains:

  • Duck - The first ingredient is a high-quality protein not typically used in dog food.
  • Potatoes and peas - Easily digestible carbohydrate sources.
  • A Precise Blend of Veggies, Fruit and Micronutrients - Selected for their nutritional value and their capacity to help in the digestive process.
  • An Optimal Blend of Omega 3 and 6 Fatty Acids - Helps maintain the immune system and support skin and coat health
Deboned Duck,Tapioca Starch,Potatoes, Peas, Duck Meal,Pea Protein,Canola Oil (source of Omega 6 Fatty Acids),Potato Starch, Pea Fiber, Natural Flavor, Fish Oil (source of Omega 3 Fatty Acids), Dicalcium Phosphate, Calcium Carbonate, Alfalfa Meal, Choline Chloride, DL-Methionine, Potassium Chloride, Pumpkin, Dried Chicory Root, Flaxseed (source of Omega 3 and 6 Fatty Acids), Salt, Caramel, Vitamin E Supplement, Mixed Tocopherols (a natural preservative), L-Ascorbyl-2-Polyphosphate (a source of Vitamin C),Parsley, Kelp, Blueberries, Cranberries, Barley Grass, Yucca Schidigera Extract, Turmeric, Iron Sulfate, Iron Amino Acid Chelate, Zinc Amino Acid Chelate, Zinc Sulfate, Oil of Rosemary, L-Carnitine, L-Lysine, Copper Sulfate, Copper Amino Acid Chelate, Nicotinic Acid (Vitamin B3), Taurine, Calcium Pantothenate (Vitamin B5), Biotin (Vitamin B7), Manganese Sulfate, Vitamin A Supplement, Manganese Amino Acid Chelate, Sodium Selenite, Thiamine Mononitrate (Vitamin B1), Riboflavin (Vitamin B2), Vitamin D3 Supplement, Vitamin B12 Supplement, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride (Vitamin B6), Dried Yeast, Dried Enterococcus faecium fermentation product, Dried Lactobacillus acidophilus fermentation product, Dried Aspergillus niger fermentation extract, Dried Trichoderma longibrachiatum fermentation extract, Dried Bacillus subtilis fermentation product, Folic Acid (Vitamin B9), Calcium Iodate.
Guaranteed Analysis:
Crude Protein 20.0% min
Crude Fat 13.0% min
Crude Fiber 6.0% max
Moisture 10.0% max
Calcium 0.9% min
Phosphorus 0.7% min
Vitamin E 300 IU/kg min
Omega 3 Fatty Acids* 0.75% min
Omega 6 Fatty Acids* 2.0% min
Vitamin C* 100 mg/kg min
Glucosamine* 200 mg/kg min

*Not recognized as an essential nutrient by AAFCO Dog Food
The main ingredients

Deboned Duck is the first ingredient, which means this formula contains more duck than any other ingredient. Although duck is a quality dog food ingredient, raw duck is 80% moisture. After it is cooked while making the dog food, most of that moisture is lost, leaving just a small part of the meat content.

The final contribution after cooking the duck will be smaller than indicated on the ingredient list.

The next ingredient is Tapioca Starch. Tapioca is often used to replace starch in grain free dog foods. However, it is nutritionally poor when compared with grains, so using it requires compensating additions of ingredients to supply methionine and lysine.

The third ingredient is Potatoes. Potatoes are a good source of dietary fiber, vitamins B6 and C, as well as potassium and manganese.

The fourth ingredient is Peas. Peas provide a good supply of protein and dietary fiber. They also are a natural source for vitamins C and K. However, some dogs experience problems digesting peas because of the fibrous cellulose contained in the peas.

The fifth ingredient is Duck Meal. Duck meal is concentrated duck meat, and contains up to four times the protein of duck.

Other ingredients of note in Blue Basics Grain Free Adult Duck and Potato Recipe

Chicory root: Chicory root is rich in simple sugars and the polysaccharide inulin. Studies suggest that inulin can have a beneficial effect on the gut's 'good bacteria' which is making it increasingly popular as a prebiotic and as a source of soluble dietary fiber. Inulin is also fairly sweet making it a popular natural dog food flavor enhancer.

Caramel: Caramel is a natural coloring agent made by caramelizing carbohydrates. It is used in dog foods solely to give a golden brown tint to the finished product, in other words change the color to be more appealing to you, the buyer.

Caramel is considered controversial because it has been found to cause cancer in laboratory animals, in its concentrated version. However, it is still considered safe by the FDA.

Taurine: Taurine supplementation is generally focused on cat foods and non-poultry- containing dog foods. Dogs are normally able to synthesize taurine in their bodies, so taurine is not a normal dog food ingredient.

Chelated minerals: Chelated minerals are those minerals that are chemically attached to protein, which makes them about 20% more readily absorbed. Chelated minerals are typically associated with higher quality dog foods.

Fermentation products: Fermentation products contain probiotics which will grow in the dogs digestive tract and assist in the digestion process.

So is it a good dog food?

Blue Basics Grain Free Adult Duck and Potato Recipe, judging by its ingredients, is an above average dry dog food. It contains two sources of meat protein in the top five ingredients.

For comparison, the guaranteed analyses is converted from an as fed bases to a dry matter bases. This results in this dog food containing approximately 22% protein and 14% fat. Again, using the dry matter bases we can calculate an carbohydrate content of 56% and a fat to protein ratio of 64%.

This shows Blue Basics Grain Free Adult Duck and Potato Recipe contains below average protein, below average fat, and above average carbohydrate content.

So, the bottom line is that Blue Basics Grain Free Adult Duck and Potato Recipe is an above average dry dog food, with a below average amount of meat protein.

Blue Basics Grain Free Adult Duck and Potato Recipe receives three stars and is recommended.

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