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- Meat is the first ingredient – 1 Star
- Uses some unnamed meats – 1 Star
- Above average protein content – 0.5 Star
- Less than 4 controversial ingredients – 1 Star
- Catological Discretionary Rating – 1 Star
Here’s a few important points to consider for this particular line:
- 95% of the ingredients in this recipe (by weight) are meat
- The only “fillers” are fiber ingredients and thickening agents…so it’s pretty much filler-free
- Includes extra vitamins and minerals
- 2 recipes include a lot of fish, which we do not recommend as the main ingredient in your cat’s diet
- Overall a great food, with excellent macronutrient profiles (high protein, high fat, super-low carbs)
The 95% Premium Meat product line includes 5 wet recipes/flavors.
Each recipe below includes its related AAFCO nutrient profile when available on the product’s official webpage or packaging: Growth (G), Maintenance (M), All Life Stages (A), Supplemental (S) or Unspecified (U).
The star rating is a rough average of all of the flavors in a single line of food. If an individual recipe scored lower or higher, we will mark that below, next to the flavor.
- Dave’s Pet Food 95% Premium Meat Chicken & Chicken Liver Pate (M)
- Dave’s Pet Food 95% Premium Meat Beef & Beef Liver Pate (M)
- Dave’s Pet Food 95% Premium Meat Tuna & Chicken Pate (M)
- Dave’s Pet Food 95% Premium Meat Turkey & Turkey Liver Pate (M)
- Dave’s Pet Food 95% Premium Meat Salmon (M)
Dave’s Pet Food 95% Premium Meat Chicken & Chicken Liver Pate was selected to represent the other products in the line for this review.
Dave’s Pet Food 95% Premium Meat Chicken & Chicken Liver Pate
Wet Cat Food
|Estimated Nutrient Content|
|Dry Matter Basis||45%||36%||0%|
|Calorie Weighted Basis||34%||66%||14%|
Estimated Dry Matter Nutrient Content
Fiber (guaranteed analysis)
Is real, named meat the first ingredient?
Chicken, Chicken Liver, Chicken Broth, Natural Flavor, Calcium Carbonate, Flaxseed, Sun-Cured Alfalfa Meal, Tricalcium Phosphate, Salt, Potassium Chloride, Carrageenan, Guar Gum, Choline Chloride, Taurine, Iron Amino Acid Complex, Magnesium Amino Acid Complex, Zinc Amino Acid Complex, Manganese Amino Acid Complex, Copper Amino Acid Complex, Sodium Selenite, Calcium Iodate, Thiamine Mononitrate (Source of Vitamin B1), Niacin Supplement (Source of Vitamin B3), Vitamin E Supplement, Calcium Pantothenate (Source of Vitamin B5), Pyridoxine Hydrochloride (Source of Vitamin B6), Riboflavin Supplement (Source of Vitamin B2), Biotin, Vitamin B12 Supplement, Vitamin D2 Supplement, Folic Acid.
Ingredients in red are controversial or of questionable quality.
The first ingredient in this cat food is chicken. Good.
While quality of the individual ingredient can vary, chicken is a very good protein source for cats.
It’s also important to note that chicken contains about 70% water, so when it is processed and cooked for use in cat food, it will become a smaller part of the total recipe.
The second ingredient is chicken liver. Good.
Liver is an important organ meat that your cat would eat in the wild to get extra protein, vitamins, and minerals.
This is usually a sign of a high quality food.
The third ingredient is chicken broth. Good.
Instead of using water for processing, chicken broth is added for moisture.
Broth may contain vitamins and nutrients from the original animal (chicken, in this case), that water would lack.
This is usually a sign of a high quality food.
After natural flavors, which are fine, the fourth ingredient is calcium carbonate. Good.
This is a common form of calcium.
Calcium helps to build and maintain your cat’s bones and teeth, and is an important tool in maintaining a variety of other healthy bodily functions.
The fifth ingredient is flaxseed. Good.
Flaxseed provides a quality omega-3 fatty acid source, and nutritive fiber to the recipe.
It can only be digested when the outer shell is removed or destroyed, but there is no information given in this ingredient to determine if it is made bioavailable by grinding or flaking.
The sixth ingredient is sun-cured alfalfa meal. Good.
Alfalfa is a somewhat common source of dietary fiber.
It’s decently high in protein and fiber.
This recipe includes a number of other ingredients, but once you get down this far, none of them will be in large enough quantities to make a real difference, except for the added vitamins and minerals.
However, there are a few things you should know about.
It uses carrageenan, a thickening agent.
Carrageenan is a very controversial ingredient. It is derived from a red seaweed.
One of it’s forms, degraded carrageenan, is a potential carcinogen.
While degraded is not used in food applications, some people have concerns that the ingredient could become degraded from a cat’s stomach acid, therefore potentially increasing cancer risk.
It is likely fine, but with so many other options on the market, many people choose not to take the risk.
Guar gum comes from guar beans, and is another thickening agent.
In small quantities, like those in cat food, it should be a harmless ingredient.
However, some research has shown that including guar gum in a commercial cat food “had a significant negative effect on apparent protein digestibility in many of the cats and tended to depress apparent fat and energy digestibilities.”
While not heavily substantiated beyond this study, it might mean your cat needs to eat more protein to make up for the lower digestibility.
To read a more in depth article about any of the ingredients listed here, check out our Cat Food Ingredient Wiki (currently under development).
The Catological Verdict on Dave’s 95% Premium Meat Wet Cat Food
From top to bottom, this is an above average wet product.
Meat is the first ingredient, and pretty much only ingredient.
There are no fillers, just a couple of fiber-additives and a couple of thickening agents. Neither of which are considered fillers.
Some recipes also utilize a lot of fish, which we do not recommend feeding to cats as their main protein source.
Fish allergens are somewhat common, and fish can contain high levels of mercury and other environmental toxins that are harmful to your cat. They are also not often eaten it the wild by feral or homeless cats.
Overall, though, is a great example of a wet food you should be feeding to your cat.
Based on the ingredients and the macronutrient profiles (not to mention the fact that this is advertised as containing 95% meat) , we can safely assume that meat plays a major role in the recipe.
We can therefore say that it is a meat-based cat food, which is appropriate for your carnivorous feline.
To review, on a dry matter basis, this food is 45% protein, 36% fat, and 0% carbs.
As a group, the brand has an average protein content of 48%, and average fat content of 33%, and an average carb content of 0%.
Compared to the other 2000+ foods in our database, this food has:
- Average protein.
- Above average fat.
- Below average carbs.
Because meat comes first, no fillers are used, and the macronutrient profile is excellent, our average rating for this brand is 4.5 stars.
Dave’s Pet Food Cat Food Recall History
We do not believe that a recall indicates a low quality food or company, and we respect the fact that sometimes things happen that cause a manufacturer to recall a food.
Usually these things are non-life-threatening, and we think it’s important to take a moment to be thankful about just how few recalls there really are in the industry, considering the enormous volume of food produced.
However, we do believe that a history of recalls may point to a larger issue with a company, and that discerning consumers want to know who they’re buying from, especially when it comes to something as important as the food you feed your beloved cat.
Here is a list of recalls that have affected the Dave’s Pet Food brand in the past:
- June 2018 – Potentially elevated levels of thyroid hormone – 1 recipe affected
- December 2015 – “Off odor”, potential rancidity – 1 recipe affected
If you want to stay up to date on the latest recall information affecting your cat’s food, sign up to our email list and receive an email every time a recall is announced. We’ll also let you know about any updated ratings, recipe changes, or new cat foods on the market. (Our alert system will be launched shortly, check back soon.)
Where To Buy Dave’s Naturally Healthy Cat Food
We recommend purchasing your pet products from Chewy.com. They continually prove that they walk the walk while talking the talk, and I’ve never dealt with a more dedicated pet-parent base of people than those who work at Chewy.
Plus, they offer 20% off and free shipping on lots of orders.