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Natural Balance Original Ultra (canned)

*Est. $1.75 per 13 oz. can
Reviewed
May 2012
by ConsumerSearch

Pros
  • Good-quality ingredients
  • Comprehensive safety testing program
  • No artificial preservatives
  • Moderate price
Cons
  • Moderate priceNot as much meat as more expensive canned dog foods
  • Some grains

Natural Balance canned dog foods, such as Natural Balance Original Ultra, sit in the middle ground between premium canned dog foods such as Newman's Own Organics Organic Beef & Liver (Est. $2.50 for a 12-oz. can) and better budget choices such as Nutro Max Adult Beef and Rice canned dog food (*Est. $1.11 per 12.5 oz. can). The ingredients list for the Original Ultra variety lists chicken broth, chicken, chicken liver, duck, lamb and salmon as the top ingredients, and carbohydrates come from better sources such as brown rice and potatoes. Natural Balance canned dog foods meet Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO) nutrition guidelines.

The company's program of testing each date-code batch for a variety of contaminants and making those results available to owners adds a measure of reassurance for buyers and has been well received. Though the company has not been entirely free of recall issues in the past, it's been responsive when problems are discovered, most advocates say.

We found feedback for Natural Balance canned foods at a number of sites. The most helpful include DogFoodAdvisor.com, DogAware.com and Dog Food Reviews. Petco.com has a selection of reviews from dog owners.

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Newman's Own Organics Beef and Liver Grain-Free for Dogs, 12-Ounce Cans (Pack of 12)
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New: $26.44   
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Our Sources

1. DogFoodAdvisor.com

Mike Sagman reviews the lamb variety of Natural Balance canned dog foods but says that it represents the entire line, including Natural Balance Original Ultra, for the purposes of his evaluation. Though meat content is not as high as some other foods, it's still "primarily a meat-based canned food" and one that has the "hallmarks of a quality canned dog food." Natural Balance earns 4 stars and is "highly recommended."

Review: Natural Balance Ultra (Canned), Mike Sagman, Aug. 16, 2010

2. DogAware.com

Natural Balance makes the list of recommended canned dog foods at this pet-food advocate's site. Mary Straus says that the ingredients are "human grade," and notes the company's product testing program.

Review: Canned Dog Foods and Refrigerated or Frozen Cooked Foods, Mary Straus, Aug. 14, 2011

3. Dog Food Reviews

Natural Balance makes this site's list of top dog foods and earns a 5-star rating. High-quality ingredients is a big reason why, but the testing program and the fact that the results are published contribute to the positive evaluation.

Review: Natural Balance Dog Food Reviews, Editors of Dog Food Reviews

4. Petco.com

Natural Balance Original Ultra dog food earns an impressive 4.9-star rating out of 5 here based on 30 user reviews. No rating is less than 4 stars. Price, quality, and the fact that owners' dogs seem to enjoy it lead the list of why.

Review: Natural Balance Ultra Premium Original Formula Canned Dog Food, Contributors to Petco.com

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