A note about our ingredients...
K-9 Octane utilizes only ingredients you can pronounce, and we can be proud of. There is a reason behind every ingredient. We've worked hard to create a science-based formula, not a marketing or emotion-based formula, so please feel free to ask if you have questions about a particular ingredient and why it is included, or not included. We adhere to the strictest safety standards throughout the entire process and never cut corners where the safety of our dogs is concerned. We chose Canada as our manufacturing site due to more stringent quality control protocols. This is not the most economical way to produce dog food, but it's the right way.
What we never include:
Flaxseed- Found in many dog foods due to its omega 3 content, you won't find it in ours for several reasons. While omega 3's are critical and a huge benefit to dogs and humans alike, we utilize fish and fish oil to achieve our high omega 3 levels, as these are more biologically-appropriate sources for canines. Additionally, flax is extremely high in phytoestrogens and can be a problematic ingredient for breeding dogs.
Legumes- You will not see biologically-inappropriate legumes in any of our formulas. Grains have wrongly gotten a bad rap in recent years, due to marketing, not facts, and have been replaced by legumes in many fad grain-free diets. Legumes are absolutely no more biologically-appropriate for canines, and more recently have been implicated (not proven, but potentially implicated) in an uptick of DCM (dilated cardiomyopathy) cases. They are inexpensive fillers, not necessary for a dog, and potentially harmful, so you won't find them here.
They also raise the protein content of a food label, so you may pay more for a food with a high protein label utilizing a variety of legumes in the ingredient list, but your dog is not reaping any benefits from these inappropriate protein sources- yet another marketing gimmick, and we're not fans of those. Many legumes are also very high in phytoestrogens, and we're not fans of those, either.
Corn, wheat, soy, white rice, white potatoes, rye, barley, gluten- These tend to be low-cost ingredients with only modest nutritional value. All kibble must have starch, or it won't stick together. We won't try to convince you dogs have a biological need for carbohydrates. We know you know better than that. The fact is, however, that kibble has a need for starch or it won't stick. You would end up with dust in a bag if it weren't for starch.
So, we compromise. We know we need starch to make our food, so we use the highest quality, most efficient and beneficial sources possible. We use highly digestible grains, grains that provide necessary nutrients and high quality carbohydrate content. Whole grain oats provide more nutrients per calorie than nearly all other grains, and millet is loaded with B vitamins and is low in calories, in keeping with our philosophy of making the vast majority of our calories from high quality animal protein and fat. K-9 Octane has one of the lowest carbohydrate contents of any dry commercial diet on the market, around 19.5%. Average premium and super premium foods can have carbohydrate contents in the 40% range.
Unnamed meat meal - We will never include anything from any source we cannot discern and identify, meat or otherwise. Mixed meat meals are typically extremely low-quality ingredients with a lot of indigestible material...nothing that belongs in a performance dog food.
Whole fresh meats as a first ingredient- (Wait, what?!) Yep. You read that right. The "first ingredient a whole meat" idea is a marketing gimmick designed to make you feel like you're feeding a high quality food and charge you a lot of money for it, while your dog gains very little.
Let me explain; dog food labels are required to be written in order of ingredient content. The first ingredient is represented in greatest quantity. Each ingredient is listed in order of weight. Here's where it gets tricky and food manufacturers will try to fool you and appeal to your emotions. These ingredients are weighed PRIOR to cooking! Think about how much water is in whole, fresh meat. Hint- it's a lot. Like the human body, animals are +/- 70% water. By the time you remove the water from that first ingredient, it should be way down the list and you're likely left with a plant-based food. Not what you are intending to pay for, is it?!
Our first ingredient, low ash chicken meal, contains roughly 300% more protein than whole fresh chicken, because chicken meal is essentially chicken with water removed PRIOR to weighing. That's A WHOLE LOT more meat, and more of what your dogs need for optimal performance and stamina. This is how we can have a single meat ingredient as the first ingredient and still have more meat inclusion than a brand with 3-4 named fresh meats in the ingredients list.
Artificial preservatives/BHA/BHT/Ethoxyquin- we would never add ethoxyquin or other artificial preservatives to our foods. This popular synthetic antioxidant is present in trace amounts in many, many foods throughout the food chain, including human foods. The FDA has deemed it safe and sets limits for its use. Popular foods preserved with ethoxyquin include some spices,such as paprika, chili powder, and some curry. It is used in many animal and acquatic feeds. However, it's controversial and since our dogs eat the same food on a daily basis, we have chosen to avoid it out of caution. As a synthetic preservative, it doesn't meet our standards of only including the safest, purest, and most natural and clean, trusted ingredients.
So, while we certainly don't add ethoxyquin as an ingredient, and don't even have it at our manufacturing facility, on the very slim chance that there are trace amounts of it from somewhere else in the ingredient chain, our policy of total honesty and transparency dictates that we acknowledge this. These trace amounts are between 0.01 and 0.05 parts per million (PPM). We test all of our ingredients for the presence of ethoxyquin prior to including them, but most devices will not pick up residual amounts below 0.01 - 0.05ppm. However, when mixed with other ingredients that may also have undetectable trace amounts by themselves, they may combine to equal a number in that 0.01 - 0.05 range. If this were to happen, it would be detectable, and a statement on the bag would state that ethoxyquin was a preservative. as an ingredient in our facility, but on
the very slim off chance that there are trace amounts of it from somewhere else in the ingredient chain,
A company assuring its customers that absolutely no trace amounts of ethoxyquin could ever be found in their food is either not well-informed or not honest.