The Blue Buffalo Wilderness product line includes nine canned dog foods.
Each recipe below includes its related AAFCO nutrient profile when available on the product’s official webpage:
Growth, Maintenance, All Life Stages, Supplemental or Unspecified.
- Blue Wilderness Trout and Chicken Grill [M]
- Blue Wilderness Beef and Chicken Grill (3 stars) [M]
- Blue Wilderness Duck and Chicken Grill (3 stars) [M]
- Blue Wilderness Turkey and Chicken Grill (3 stars) [M]
- Blue Wilderness Salmon and Chicken Grill (2.5 stars) [M]
- Blue Wilderness Puppy Turkey and Chicken Grill (3 stars) [G]
- Blue Wilderness Senior Turkey and Chicken Grill (3 stars) [M]
- Blue Wilderness Small Breed Turkey and Chicken Grill (4 stars) [M]
- Blue Wilderness Healthy Weight Turkey and Chicken Grill (5 stars) [M]
Blue Wilderness Trout and Chicken Grill was selected to represent the other products in the line for this review.
Estimated Dry Matter Nutrient Content
Ingredients: Trout, chicken, chicken broth, chicken liver, potatoes, carrageenan, flaxseed (source of omega 3 and 6 fatty acids), guar gum, cassia gum, potassium chloride, salt, zinc amino acid chelate, iron amino acid chelate, choline chloride, vitamin E supplement, copper amino acid chelate, manganese amino acid chelate, sodium selenite, thiamine mononitrate (vitamin B1), cobalt amino acid chelate, niacin supplement (vitamin B3), calcium pantothenate (vitamin B5), vitamin A supplement, riboflavin supplement (vitamin B2), biotin (vitamin B7), vitamin B12 supplement, potassium iodide, pyridoxine hydrochloride (vitamin B6), vitamin D3 supplement, folic acid (vitamin B9)
Fiber (estimated dry matter content) = 6.8%
Red items indicate controversial ingredients
|Estimated Nutrient Content|
|Dry Matter Basis||46%||39%||8%|
|Calorie Weighted Basis||31%||64%||5%|
The first ingredient in this dog food is trout, a marine and freshwater fish naturally high in protein.
The second ingredient is chicken. Chicken is considered “the clean combination of flesh and skin… derived from the parts or whole carcasses of chicken”.1
Chicken is naturally rich in the ten essential amino acids required by a dog to sustain life.
The third ingredient is chicken broth. Broths are nutritionally empty. But because they add both flavor and moisture to a dog food they are a common finding in many canned products.
The fourth ingredient is chicken liver. This is an organ meat sourced from a named animal and thus considered a beneficial component.
The fifth ingredient is potato. Potatoes can be considered a gluten-free source of digestible carbohydrates. Yet with the exception of perhaps their caloric content, potatoes are of only modest nutritional value to a dog.
The sixth ingredient is carrageenan, a gelatin-like thickening agent extracted from seaweed. Although carrageenan has been used as a food additive for hundreds of years, there appears to be some recent controversy regarding its long term biological safety.
The seventh ingredient is 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.
The eighth ingredient is guar gum, a gelling or thickening agent found in many wet pet foods. Refined from dehusked guar beans, guar gum can add a notable amount of dietary fiber to any product.
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 product.
With one notable exception…
This food contains chelated minerals, minerals that have been chemically attached to protein. This makes them easier to absorb. Chelated minerals are usually found in better dog foods.
Blue Buffalo Wilderness Canned Dog Food The Bottom Line
Judging by its ingredients alone, Blue Buffalo Wilderness canned dog food looks like an above-average wet product.
But ingredient quality by itself cannot tell the whole story. We still need to estimate the product’s meat content before determining a final rating.
The dashboard displays a dry matter protein reading of 46%, a fat level of 39% and estimated carbohydrates of about 8%.
As a group, the brand features an average protein content of 44% and a mean fat level of 38%. Together, these figures suggest a carbohydrate content of 10% for the overall product line.
And a fat-to-protein ratio of about 85%.
Above-average protein. Above-average fat. And below-average carbs when compared to a typical wet dog food.
Even when you consider the protein-boosting effect of the flaxseed, this looks like the profile of a wet product containing a significant amount of meat.
However, with 64% of the total calories in our example coming from fat versus just 31% from protein, some recipes may not be suitable for every animal. In addition, this same finding also prevents us from awarding the brand a higher rating.
Blue Buffalo Wilderness is a grain-free meat-based canned dog food using a significant amount of poultry, fish or beef as its main sources of animal protein, thus earning the brand 3.5 stars.
Please note certain recipes are sometimes given a higher or lower rating based upon our estimate of their total meat content and (when appropriate) their fat-to-protein ratios.
Pet owners looking for a good kibble from the same company may wish to visit our review of Blue Buffalo Wilderness dry dog food.