Only Natural Pet MindfulMeals Dog Food receives the Advisor’s second-highest tier rating of 4.5 stars.
The Only Natural Pet MindfulMeals product line includes 4 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.
Important: Because many websites do not reliably specify which Growth or All Life Stages recipes are safe for large breed puppies, we do not include that data in this report. Be sure to check actual packaging for that information.
Use the links below to check prices and package sizes at an online retailer.
- Only Natural Pet MindfulMeals Dive [M]
- Only Natural Pet MindfulMeals Graze [M]
- Only Natural Pet MindfulMeals Forage [M]
- Only Natural Pet MindfulMeals Small Breed Forage [M]
Only Natural Pet MindfulMeals Small Breed Forage was selected to represent the other products in the line for this review.
Only Natural Pet MindfulMeals Small Breed Forage
Dry Dog Food
Estimated Dry Matter Nutrient Content
Ingredients: Organic deboned turkey, organic deboned chicken, whitefish meal (source of glucosamine & chondroitin), pollock meal, garbanzo beans, field peas, lentils, chicken fat (preserved with mixed tocopherols), krill meal, quail, natural chicken flavor, salmon oil, sprouted flaxseed, dried chicory root, dried apples, dried cranberries, tomato pomace, dried carrots, dried kelp, choline chloride, dried Aspergillus oryzae fermentation extract (source of amylase), dried Enterococcus faecium fermentation product, dried Lactobacillus acidophilus fermentation product, dried Aspergillus niger fermentation extract, dried Trichoderma longibrachiatum fermentation extract, dried Bacillus subtilis fermentation extract, dried Aspergillus oryzae fermentation product (source of amylase, lipase and protease), pineapple stems (source of bromelain), Yucca schidigera extract, turmeric, New Zealand green mussels, dried squash, dried zucchini, dried parsnips, dried pears, dried kale, dried spinach, dried blueberries, dandelion, rosemary extract
Fiber (estimated dry matter content) = 3.9%
Red denotes controversial item
|Estimated Nutrient Content|
|Dry Matter Basis||43%||19%||30%|
|Calorie Weighted Basis||36%||39%||25%|
The first two ingredients in this dog food are turkey and chicken. Although these are quality items, raw poultry 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, these items would probably account for a smaller part of the total content of the finished product.
The third ingredient is whitefish meal. Because it is considered a meat concentrate, fish meal contains almost 300% more protein than fresh fish itself.
Whitefish is a marine or freshwater species native to Canada and the California coast.
Fish meal is typically obtained from the “clean, dried, ground tissue of undecomposed whole fish and fish cuttings” of commercial fish operations.1
The fourth ingredient is pollock meal, another protein-rich meat concentrate.
It’s important to note that the next three ingredients included in this recipe are each a type of legume:
- Garbanzo beans
- Field peas
Although they’re a mixture of quality plant ingredients, there’s an important issue to consider here. And that’s the recipe design practice known as ingredient splitting.
If we were to combine all these individual items together and report them as one, that newer combination would likely occupy a significantly higher position on the list.
In addition, legumes contain about 25% protein, a factor that must also be considered when judging the meat content of this dog food.
The eighth ingredient is chicken fat. Chicken fat is obtained from rendering chicken, a process similar to making soup in which the fat itself is skimmed from the surface of the liquid.
Chicken fat is high in linoleic acid, an omega-6 fatty acid essential for life. Although it doesn’t sound very appetizing, chicken fat is actually a quality ingredient.
The ninth ingredient is krill meal, yet another high protein meat concentrate.
Krill are small crustaceans closely related to shrimp.
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 six notable exceptions…
First, we find 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.
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 counterparts.
Next, we note the inclusion of tomato pomace. Tomato pomace is a controversial ingredient, a by-product remaining after processing tomatoes into juice, soup and ketchup.
Many praise tomato pomace for its high fiber and nutrient content, while others scorn it as an inexpensive pet food filler.
Just the same, there’s probably not enough tomato pomace here to make much of a difference.
In addition, salmon oil is naturally rich in the prized EPA and DHA type of omega-3 fatty acids. These two high quality fats boast the highest bio-availability to dogs and humans.
Depending on its level of freshness and purity, salmon oil should be considered a commendable addition.
Next, chicory root is rich in inulin, a starch-like compound made up of repeating units of carbohydrates and found in certain roots and tubers.
Not only is inulin a natural source of soluble dietary fiber, it’s also a prebiotic used to promote the growth of healthy bacteria in a dog’s digestive tract.
We also find green-lipped mussel in this food. Mussels are clam-like animals notably rich in glucosamine and omega-3 fatty acids, nutrients proven to support long-term joint health.
And lastly, we find no added minerals on the ingredients list. However, since the nutritional adequacy statement included on the label states the product is “complete and balanced”, we would assume these essential nutrients are provided by the food ingredients in the recipe.
Only Natural Pet MindfulMeals Dog Food Review
Judging by its ingredients alone, Only Natural Pet MindfulMeals 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.
As a group, the brand features an average protein content of 43% and a mean fat level of 19%. Together, these figures suggest a carbohydrate content of 31% for the overall product line.
And a fat-to-protein ratio of about 44%.
Above-average protein. Above-average fat. And below-average carbs when compared to a typical dry dog food.
When you consider the protein-boosting effect of the garbanzo beans, peas, lentils and flaxseed, this still looks like the profile of a kibble containing a notable amount of meat.
Only Natural Pet MindfulMeals is a grain-free dry dog food using a notable amount of named meat meals as its main source of animal protein, thus earning the brand 4.5 stars.
However, it’s unfortunate the company chose to include so much plant-based protein in its recipe. Otherwise, we would have been compelled to award this product a higher rating.
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.
Only Natural Pet Dog Food
The following list (if present) includes all dog food recalls since 2009 directly related to Only Natural Pet. If there are no recalls listed in this section, we have not yet reported any events.
Readers interested in Only Natural Pet dog food may also wish to check out these popular pages, too…
Important FDA Alert
The FDA is investigating a potential link between diet and heart disease in dogs. Click here for details.
A Final Word
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Notes and Updates
08/19/2019 Last Update
- Association of American Feed Control Officials ↩
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