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WellPet LLC is a cat and dog food company formed by the combination of Eagle Pack Pet Foods and Old Mother Hubbard, after both had been purchased by the investment firm Berwind Corporation. In October 2007, Eagle Pack was sold to Berwind Corporation for an undisclosed amount. Between 2008 and 2009, Eagle and OMH were merged into a single entity called Wellpet LLC.
Wellness has a fairly good reputation and the only recent recall was in October of 2012. That recall was not serious and no illnesses or deaths were reported. They focus on high meat-based products and offer a number of grain-free products. Since grain free pet foods are becoming more popular, so is this brand.
In the article below, you will see a full list of ingredients for this product and a full breakdown of the top 10 ingredients in this food. Please let us know what you think by rating this cat food and also posting your thoughts about this product below in the commenting section.
List Of Ingredients In This Cat Food
Deboned Chicken, Chicken Meal, Rice, Ground Barley, Whitefish Meal, Tomato Pomace, Chicken Fat (preserved with Mixed Tocopherols), Natural Chicken Flavor, Ground Flaxseed, Salmon Oil, Cranberries, Cranberry Extract Powder, Cranberry Fiber, Chicory Root Extract, Vitamins [Vitamin E Supplement, Niacin, Beta-Carotene, Vitamin A Supplement, Thiamine Mononitrate, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, d-Calcium Pantothenate, Riboflavin, Vitamin D3 Supplement, Vitamin B12 Supplement, Folic Acid, Ascorbic Acid (Vitamin C), Biotin], Minerals [Zinc Proteinate, Zinc Sulfate, Iron Proteinate, Ferrous Sulfate, Copper Sulfate, Copper Proteinate, Manganese Proteinate, Manganese Sulfate, Sodium Selenite, Calcium Iodate], Choline Chloride, Taurine, Mixed Tocopherols added to preserve freshness, Glucosamine Hydrochloride, Chondroitin Sulfate, L-Carnitine, Dried Kelp, Yucca Schidigera Extract, Dried Lactobacillus plantarum Fermentation Product, Dried Enterococcus faecium Fermentation Product, Dried Lactobacillus casei Fermentation Product, Dried Lactobacillus acidophilus Fermentation Product, Rosemary Extract, Green Tea Extract.
Top 5 Ingredients Analysis
Chicken is a very popular ingredient for pet food and in this case, they are referring to whole chicken with the bones removed. This is a very high quality meat source and we are pleased to see it listed. In dry cat foods, whole chicken loses about 80% of its content during the cooking process. This is because chicken consists of about 80% moisture. After the cooking process is complete, the amount of whole chicken remaining is substantially reduced. However, in wet cat foods the cooking process is a bit different so this is much less of a concern.
Chicken meal is ground up chicken meat that has been carefully dried to a moisture level of 10%. The protein content is 65% and the fat level is 12%. Many pet owners feel that chicken is a superior ingredient to chicken meal. It would seem logical that feeding a pet a whole, non-rendered chicken would be good. However, whole chicken still contains its moisture content prior to cooking and since whole chicken consists of about 80% moisture, after the cooking process is over there isn’t much left. With chicken meal, the moisture was removed prior to cooking. That means, chicken meal actually has a much higher protein percentage and provides far more beneficial nutrients to your cats than whole chicken. Meals consist of meat and skin, with or without the bones, but exclusive of feathers/hair, heads, feet, horns, entrails etc. and have the proper calcium/phosphorus ratio required for a balanced diet. It’s also important to note the quality difference between “chicken by-product meal” and “chicken meal.” While we do take exception to chicken by-products, chicken meal is actually a very high quality and nutritious ingredient. We are happy to see this listed.
This is a grain that many cat owners are trying to avoid because it is a known allergen for many cats. The ingredient doesn’t supply much of any nutritional value, either. However, of all the grain products used in cat food, this grain has the lowest risk of causing allergies. There is also a growing risk of arsenic in rice. So far, the FDA believes the arsenic levels are low enough to be safe for humans and pets. However, you might want to read more about this, just so you are aware. Many cat food companies like to use this ingredient because it helps to make your cat feel more full and it is one of the easier grains for cats to digest.
With barley being a starchy carbohydrate, it supplies healthy nutrients such as fiber to the cat. Barley also gives your cat sugar level stability. Ground or pearled barley is produced from whole barley seeds that have been scoured to remove the seed hull and bran. This is a common ingredient in weight control pet foods due to its slow digestibility, starch, and soluble fibers.
Whitefish is a species of tilefish native to the eastern Pacific Ocean. This ingredient is likely included for its protein content as well as very healthy omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids. While this ingredient probably isn’t something most cats would eat in a natural or wild environment, the ingredient does contain some very essential nutrient sources. Some cat owners worry about the mercury content in fish since all fish contains some level of mercury, but the health risk is considered to be pretty low.
Additional Ingredients Of Interest
Tomato pomace is an inexpensive by-product of tomato manufacturing. Effectively, it is what is left over after processing tomatoes for juice, ketchup, soup, etc. Many cat owners shy away from any tomato based products because in larger quantities, tomatoes can be toxic to cats and cat owners are told to never feed tomatoes to their cats. However, pet food manufactures include tomatoes well within safe limits and it might even help provide cats with additional vitamins and other nutrients naturally. The biggest concern with this ingredient is that it is basically the left overs of the human food industry. This is probably what is cleaned up off of the floor, conveyer belts, etc.
Chicken Fat (preserved with Mixed Tocopherols)
Canola oil comes from the seeds of the canola plant. Once harvested, canola seeds are crushed and the oil contained within the seed is extracted. The average canola seed is 45% oil. Some cat owners like this ingredient because of its favorable omega-3 and omega-6 content. Others claim it can cause nervous system damage, respiratory problems, anemia, constipation and blindness in both humans and animals. In smaller quantities, this ingredient is unlikely to cause health problems for your cat, but since cats are obligate carnivores it is important that the food also contains enough meat based fat. Tocopherol is a naturally occurring chemical element found in a variety of foods. It is commonly called vitamin E in a generic sense, as vitamin E substances are made up of tocopherol and similar elements. The main purpose of the mixed tocopherols is to help preserve the ingredient. Since this is a natural preservative, it is generally considered safe.
Natural Chicken Flavor
As you might expect, this ingredient is simply the extracted flavoring of chicken. We usually don’t like “flavor” ingredients, but in this case, the animal is named. This ingredient isn’t going to add any nutritional value to the food, but it may make the food taste better.
Flaxseeds (also called linseeds) are a rich source of micronutrients, dietary fiber, manganese, vitamin B1, and the essential fatty acid alpha-linolenic acid, also known as ALA or omega-3. The seeds come from flax, one of the the oldest fiber crops in the world. It is not only a source of healthy fat, antioxidants, and fiber; modern research has found evidence to suggest that flaxseed can also help lower the risk of diabetes, cancer, and heart disease. The health risk associated with this ingredient is low and in general, flaxseed is considered to be a beneficial ingredient for cats.
Any type of fish oil will produce some very high quality fatty acids, namely omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids. Even though cats do not digest many sea food ingredients in the wild, most people consider this to be a higher quality ingredient. There is some concern about the mercury levels in fish, but so far the FDA claims mercury levels in fish are safe for humans and pets.