Halo Spot's Stew really does look and smell just like people food, dog owners say. However, between all the veggies and gravy, dogs wind up with less actual meat than they get from the Best Reviewed canned food, Fromm Family Gold Salmon and Chicken Pate (Est. $2.50 for a 13-oz. can) .
Human-grade, but not grain-free. Halo Spot's Stew uses human-grade ingredients, but the lineups vary by flavor -- and some flavors rate higher with experts than others. Mike Sagman at DogFoodAdvisor.com likes the Succulent Salmon flavor best; he gives it 4.5 out of 5 stars. It's higher in protein than the other flavors he has analyzed.
Succulent Salmon's main ingredients are salmon, chicken broth and chicken liver, followed by a bunch of veggies and some rolled oats (Spot's Stews are not grain-free). Minerals are chelated for easy absorption.
Never recalled. "Halo has never been recalled," its website trumpets, and indeed we found no recalls for Halo pet foods on the U.S. Food and Drug Administration's website (which tracks pet food recalls back to 2007).
Halo buys ingredients from the U.S. only, except for lamb from New Zealand and peas from Canada, one expert source notes. However, its cans are not bisphenol A (BPA)-free. BPA is a chemical that studies have linked to reproductive problems, cancers and other diseases; Halo tells Susan Thixton of TruthAboutPetFood.com that the amount of BPA in the cans is at "the safe and acceptable level established by the FDA."
High-moisture, so you may have to feed more. Canned foods contain much more moisture than dry kibble -- great for dogs, experts say. But Halo is so wet that "you'll probably have to feed more than you would of other foods," says Mary Straus at DogAware.com.
Halo is already expensive -- slightly more per ounce than the top-rated canned dog food, Fromm Family Gold Salmon and Chicken Pate (Est. $2.50 for a 13-oz. can) .
Susan Thixton scrutinizes many dog food brands and varieties, including Halo Spot's Stew Succulent Salmon. She assigns each brand and individual flavor an overall score (maximum of 4 for canned foods), based on ingredient quality and safety.
Review: Halo Spot's Stew Succulent Salmon Recipe Dog Food Canned, Susan Thixton, As of January 2014
Halo canned dog food earns this site's second-highest rating (4 stars) -- but some individual flavors rank lower. After analyzing the Wholesome Lamb recipe, Mike Sagman gives it 3.5 stars. It's lower in protein and higher in carbs and fat than the average canned dog food. Succulent Salmon rates highest -- 4.5 stars.
Review: Halo Dog Food (Canned), Mike Sagman, Updated Jan. 16, 2014
Mary Straus includes Halo Spot's Stew on her list of recommended canned dog foods. "Human-grade ingredients" are a plus, but Straus says this food is so moisture-rich you may need to feed more.
Review: Canned Dog Foods and Refrigerated or Frozen Cooked Foods, Mary Straus, Updated Jan. 3, 2014
4. Whole Dog Journal
This article explains why wet food is important for dogs. It links to the editors' list of approved canned dog foods.
Review: Whole Dog Journal's 2013 Canned Dog Food Review, Nancy Kerns, December 2013
Canned food is important to supply dogs with enough protein, says Tracie Hotchner, author of "The Dog Bible" and host of the syndicated radio show "Dog Talk." She lists Halo Spot's Stew as one of her favorite canned dog foods.
Review: FAQ: Feeding Your Dog Properly, Tracie Hotchner, Not Dated
Halo Spot's Stew canned dog food earns a perfect 5 stars from most of the nearly 40 customers who review it here. Reviewers say it really does look and smell like people food.
Review: Halo Spot's Stew Canned Dog Food, Contributors to OnlyNaturalPet.com, As of January 2014