Hill's Healthy Advantage Dry Food Review
Adult Oral +
Review of Hill's Healthy Advantage Dry Food
Adult Oral +
This product is manufactured by Hill's Pet Nutrition, Inc..
According to our data, this Hill's Healthy Advantage recipe provides complete & balanced nutrition for the maintenance of adult dogs. In other words, this formula is AAFCO approved.
Unlike other AAFCO approved dog foods which rely in laboratory testing to substantiate nutritional adequacy, this recipe has undergone feeding trials. In the pet food industry, feeding trials are often considered to be the superior testing method.
Animal feeding tests using AAFCO procedures substantiate that Hill's Healthy Advantage Dry Food Adult Oral + provides complete and balanced nutrition for the maintenance of adult dogs.
We'll begin this review of Hill's Healthy Advantage Dry Food Adult Oral + with a detailed discussion of the ingredients.
The first ingredient is chicken by-product meal. Chicken by-product meal is produced by cooking chicken by-products using a process called rendering. By-products are defined by AAFCO as the "non-rendered, clean parts, other than meat, derived from slaughtered mammals." Thus, chicken by-products contain nearly all parts of chickens which are typically not consumed by humans. These parts include the liver, lung, spleen, kidney, stomach, blood, intestine, bone, etc.
Like other meat by-products, chicken by-products are considered controversial, mainly because they are inexpensive ingredients which consumers have equated with slaughterhouse waste. However, manufactures and many experts claim that animal by-products are unjustly criticized. Proponents state that "named" by-products, such as chicken by-products, supply many important nutrients required by dogs.
The second ingredient is brewers rice. Brewer's rice is the small fragments of rice kernel that are separated from the larger kernels of milled rice. The fragments do not contain the same nutrition profile of the whole kernel and therefore brewer's rice is a lower quality grain. Brewer's rice is typically regarded as an inexpensive and low quality filler.
The third ingredient is whole grain wheat. Whole grain wheat contains the entire grain of wheat (the germ, bran, and endosperm). Wheat is the second most-produced cereal grain in the world (corn is the first). Although wheat is a controversial ingredient, it is not necessarily undesirable because it provides dietary fiber and many other nutrients. However, wheat contains a notable amount of plant based protein, which is inferior to meat based protein and therefore an undesirable substitution.
Wheat is also one of the most common ingredients to cause food allergies or intolerance. However, grains such as wheat are typically low offenders in comparison to certain protein sources (such as beef).
The fourth ingredient is whole grain corn. Whole grain corn is the entire corn kernel (the germ, bran, and endosperm). Corn is a cereal grain which provides a modest amount of vitamins, minerals, and plant based protein. It also happens to be one of the most controversial ingredients in dog food.
Proponents of corn claim that corn is highly digestible and an excellent source of protein, energy, vitamins, minerals, and essential fatty acids.
Opponents however believe that positive claims in regards to corn are either half-truths or completely false, we'll discuss a few of the opposing arguments.
In regards to digestibility, the claims of "highly digestible" are only true if corn is processed into a meal or flour and subsequently cooked. In regards to the protein contribution, we must note that corn is a plant based protein which does not contain all of the necessary amino acids required by dogs to sustain life. Therefore substituting corn for meat is an unsuitable substitution and actually degrades the overall protein quality of the product.
Finally, we'll discuss the claims about vitamins and minerals in corn. Although corn does provide many vitamins and minerals, it not necessarily an exceptional ingredient in this regards. There are many other ingredients which are more complete and biologically appropriate. Therefore the usage of corn as the primary ingredient in dog food should certainly warrant further questioning.
The fifth ingredient is powdered cellulose. Powdered cellulose is produced from minuscule pieces of wood pulp and plant fibers. Other than its fiber content, powdered cellulose lacks any nutritional contribution.
Because ingredients are listed in order of pre-cooked weight, the remaining ingredients in Hill's Healthy Advantage Dry Food Adult Oral + are not as important as the first five ingredients.
However, collectively they still have a significant impact on the overall quality of the product. Therefore, we'll continue discussing the remaining ingredients in this Hill's Healthy Advantage recipe.
Next we have soybean mill run. Soybean mill run is the by-product of dehulled soybean meal production. This ingredient is for the most part made up of soybean hulls, which are nutritionally empty. Many pet owners and experts believe soybean mill run is an inexpensive low quality filler and therefore we've marked soybean mill run a controversial ingredient.
The next ingredient is pork fat. Pork fat is typically collected while cooking pork using a process called rendering. Pork fat is a relatively high quality source of essential fatty acids. In particular, pork fat is high in linoleic acid, an important omega-6 fatty acid.
Then we have dried egg product. Dried egg product consists of shell-free eggs which are easy to digest and contain high quality protein. Egg protein is often given the highest biological value (BV). The BV metric measures the usability of the ingredient's protein.
Moving on, we have natural chicken liver flavor. As the name implies, natural chicken liver flavor provides chicken liver flavor to the product. This particular flavor is derived from natural sources which may or may not include real chicken liver.
Moving on with this review, we have soybean oil. Soybean oil is an omega-6 fatty acid source. Unlike other oils (flax, canola, etc), soybean oil does not provide omega-3 fatty acids; However, the balancing omega-3 fatty acids are most likely supplied by another oil or fat source in the product.
The next ingredient in this review is lactic acid, which is an organic compound. Lactic acid is most likely used in this recipe as a preservative.
Our next ingredient is flaxseed. Flaxseeds are an outstanding source of omega-3 fatty acids and dietary fiber. They also provide a notable amount of protein, B vitamins, and various minerals.
potassium chloride is the next ingredient in this recipe, which is a potassium supplement.
Next on the list is vitamin E supplement. Vitamin E is an essential vitamin required by dogs.
The next ingredient in this recipe is l-ascorbyl-2-polyphosphate, which is a feed-grade vitamin C supplement.
Next we have niacin supplement. Niacin is also known as vitamin B3. It's an essential vitamin that is critical for the metabolism of nutrients and the well-being of the central nervous and GI systems.
The remaining ingredients in this Hill's Healthy Advantage Dry Food recipe are unlikely to affect the overall rating of the product.
Our analysis of the ingredients show that this product derives a considerable amount of protein from non-meat ingredients. This is an undesirable property because plant based protein often lacks many of the necessary amino acids required by dogs. This property is typically found in lower quality products.
In summary, we recognize that this product does not contain any artificial colors, artificial preservatives, or anonymous meat ingredients.
The official PawDiet rating for Hill's Healthy Advantage Dry Food Adult Oral + is 1.0 out of 5.