Carna4 Dog Food (Dry)

(4.5 / 5)

Carna4 Dog Food (Dry)

The Carna4 product line includes 2 dry 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.

  • Carna4 Grain Free Duck [A]
  • Carna4 Chicken [A]

Carna4 Chicken recipe was selected to represent both products in the line for this review.

Estimated Dry Matter Nutrient Content

Protein 31

Fat 19

Carbs 42

Ingredients: Fresh chicken, chicken liver, eggs, organic sprouted barley seed, salmon, sweet potato, whole brown rice, organic sprouted flaxseed, organic sprouted lentils, organic sprouted peas, potato starch, apples, carrots, sea salt, kelp

Fiber (estimated dry matter content) = 4.4%

Estimated Nutrient Content
Method Protein Fat Carbs
Guaranteed Analysis 28% 17% NA
Dry Matter Basis 31% 19% 42%
Calorie Weighted Basis 26% 39% 35%

The first ingredient in this dog food is 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 liver. This is an organ meat sourced from a named animal and thus considered a beneficial component. However, raw liver contains about 73% water. After cooking, most of that moisture is lost, reducing the meat content to just a fraction of its original weight.

The third ingredient includes eggs. Eggs are easy to digest and have an exceptionally high biological value.

The fourth ingredient includes sprouted barley seed. Unlike whole seeds, sprouted seeds are rich in digestible energy, vitamins, amino acids, proteins, and phytochemicals. And many of the minerals they contain can be naturally chelated.

What’s more, sprouted seeds can be expected to have a lower glycemic index than their refined grain counterparts.

The fifth ingredient is salmon. Although it is rich in omega-3 fatty acids, raw salmon 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 sixth ingredient is sweet potato. Sweet potatoes are a gluten-free source of complex carbohydrates in a dog food. They are naturally rich in dietary fiber and beta carotene.

The seventh 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.

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 two notable exceptions

First, the company claims their sprouted seed ingredients, barley, flaxseed, green lentils and peas, contain “high levels of naturally-occurring, live probiotics”.

Probiotics are known to enhance a dog’s digestive and immune functions.

And lastly, although we find no mention of added vitamins or minerals on the ingredients list, we’re reassured to find a detailed list of naturally present nutrients on the company’s website.

Carna4 Dog Food
The Bottom Line

Judging by its ingredients alone, Carna4 Dog Food looks like an above-average dry 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 31%, a fat level of 19% and estimated carbohydrates of about 42%.

As a group, the brand features an average protein content of 32% and a mean fat level of 18%. Together, these figures suggest a carbohydrate content of 43% for the overall product line.

And a fat-to-protein ratio of about 56%.

Above-average protein. Above-average fat. And below-average carbs when compared to a typical dry dog food.

Free of any plant-based protein boosters, this looks like the profile of a dry product containing a notable amount of meat.

In addition, we commend Carna4 for its unique use of sprouted seeds as opposed to the standard cereal grains found in most commercial kibbles.

As previously mentioned, these types of ingredients have the potential to provide additional nutritional benefits not found in their ground grain counterparts.

Bottom line?

Carna4 is a plant-based dry dog food using a notable amount of named meats as its main sources of animal protein, thus earning the brand 4.5 stars.

Highly recommended.

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.