Introduction – Background
Ultra is a product line of Nutro. This company is working to improve all of their product lines so that they are all non-GMO.
Ingredients for Nutro Ultra Small Breed Adult
Chicken, Chicken Meal, Whole Brown Rice, Brewers Rice, Rice Bran, Lamb Meal, Chicken Fat (preserved with Mixed Tocopherols), Salmon Meal, Natural Flavor, Sunflower Oil (preserved with Mixed Tocopherols), Whole Grain Oatmeal, Whole Flaxseed, Pea Protein, Dried Plain Beet Pulp, Potassium Chloride, Choline Chloride, DL-Methionine, Salt, Mixed Tocopherols and Citric Acid (preservatives), Whole Chia Seed, Dried Coconut, Dried Egg Product, Tomato Pomace, Dried Kale, Dried Pumpkin, Dried Spinach, Dried Blueberries, Dried Apples, Dried Carrots, Zinc Sulfate, Niacin Supplement, Biotin, Vitamin E Supplement, Iron Amino Acid Chelate, D-Calcium Pantothenate, Riboflavin Supplement (Vitamin B2), Selenium Yeast, Vitamin B12 Supplement, Copper Amino Acid Chelate, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride (Vitamin B6), Manganese Amino Acid Chelate, Vitamin A Supplement, Thiamine Mononitrate (Vitamin B1), Vitamin D3 Supplement, Folic Acid, Rosemary Extract.
Aside from the fact the brown rice, a grain, is the third ingredient we have some other interesting ingredients to look at.
First, we have brewers rice this is a by-product of the cereal grain industry. It offers little nutritional value to your dog.
Next, rice bran another by-product. Also, note that the third, fourth, and fifth ingredients are all rice products. If the label combined all this rice into one, rice would likely be the #1 ingredient! Not what you want to feed your beloved carnivore.
Pea protein is about 80% protein, but the protein of peas is much less bioavailable to dogs. Pea protein has an amino acid profile that is nothing compared to that of animal protein. This is adding to the overall protein content but it is not a high-quality protein for your dog.
Tomato pomace and beet pulp are both simple by-products offering little to no real nutritional value to your dog.
The food is also supplemented with vitamin B12. This is a vitamin that is hugely abundant in animal protein. If there was plenty of bioavailable animal protein in this food then they should not have to supplement with vitamin B12.
Guaranteed Analysis for Nutro Ultra Small Breed Adult
Crude Protein 26.00% (min)
Crude Fat 15.00% (min)
Crude Fiber 4.00% (max)
Moisture 10.00% (max)
Calcium 1.00% (min)
Phosphorus 0.90% (min)
Zinc 250 mg/kg (min)
Vitamin E 80 IU/kg (min)
Omega 3 Fatty Acids 0.50% (mi.)
Omega 6 Fatty Acids 3.40% (min)
The calories from this food come first for carbs (40%), then fat (35%), and lastly from protein (25%). This is not an ideal diet for any carnivore, remember meat contains no carbs.
The analysis also shows omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids. These are likely mostly from the flaxseeds listed in the ingredients. Being of plant origin flaxseed is not going to be as bioavailable to your dog as a fish or krill oil would be. On top of that omega fatty acids are very fragile and are easily destroyed with heat, like the process of making kibble.
Flavors available for Ultra
Nutro offers wet and dry foods.
Nutro offers puppy, adult, and senior formulas.
Also, choose from tiny, small, medium, and large breed foods.
You can also buy limited ingredient, weight management, and grain-free.
Small dog up to 15lbs $51/month
Medium dog up to 45lbs $112/month
Large dog over 65lbs $143/month
This is a high-carb food with only 25% of the calories coming from protein. That is pretty lame for your carnivore friend. Especially when you take into account that added plant proteins that are not as bioavailable to your dog. Combine this with the fact that the third, fourth, and fifth ingredients are rice and if you combined those under the one name they would be the first ingredient, not meat.