Clarification of misleading declarations

Clarification of misleading declaration

When you compare the ingredients of pet food, you should know the following small but subtle differences in the names in order to recognize which is the better pet food.

(Poultry) Protein (dried)/Animal Protein (hydrolyzed), Beef Protein, Lamb Protein : refers to the pure protein of the meat, but without the meat itself. Actually, this includes feathers, beaks and feet.

Animal by-products/meat by-products : basically refers to everything that comes from an animal but is not pure meat. For example, offal, bones and fur.

Fish and fish by-products: fresh or preserved fish products of all kinds and by-products resulting from their processing.

Milk and dairy products: fresh or preserved milk products of all kinds and by-products resulting from their processing.

Eggs and egg products: fresh or preserved egg products of all kinds and by-products resulting from their processing.

Helpful to harmful: Cellulose

Cellulose powder is a source of fiber in dry dog ​​food with the lowest nutritional content of all, but it is still allowed as an additive in dog food. The official name is something like "purest, mechanically produced cellulose, obtained from alpha-cellulose from the pulp of fiber-rich plants," but the simple name is sawdust .

The art of balance

Cellulose is used in animal feed to reduce calories and control blood sugar levels, and sometimes to help digestion. However, this must be weighed against the overall reduction in feed digestibility, increased stool volume, and reduced intestinal fermentation. This balance must be carefully achieved, as the protein, fat, and other nutrient content usually also needs to be increased. However, the benefits of cellulose are irrelevant, as the price is increased stool volume due to the indigestible, nutritionally-less cellulose and reduced fermentation in the intestine.

You can also spare your animal the cellulose:

It is better to pay attention to the animal's weight, feed dogs and cats high-quality food and always provide cats with cat grass.

This is our strong recommendation!

Cold-pressed feed:

Sounds wonderful. But it's not true.

It is only true insofar as the pelleting process (i.e. the process in which the small feed crumbs are pressed into a certain shape) does not require a particularly high temperature - the term "cold-pressed feed" comes from the saving of additional heat in the pressing process of the pellets.

But the entire process of producing dry food requires more than just forming the pellets.

During the manufacturing process, the feed in the form of a crumbly dough made from dried ingredients is filled into a closed drum in which a roller runs. There are holes in the wall of this drum to give the dough or feed its shape. The wall is very thick: the thickness of the drum wall means that friction creates massive counterpressure in the holes in the mold, which heats and compacts the feed components to such an extent that the adhesives become active (otherwise the individual pellets would crumble). It is impossible to achieve a bond between the individual feed components without a certain temperature being reached. A temperature of at least 90 °C develops inside the pellets, and temperatures of at least 130 °C on the outside. The smoother the pellet, the higher the pressing pressure and therefore the higher the temperatures that develop.
So none of this is actually cold-pressed – and it’s not any closer to nature than other types of dry food.

Keep an eye on things: The truth about the meat content in dry food

There are tons of dry dog ​​foods available, and it's not easy to choose the right one for your four-legged friend. Often, misleading ingredient information is used to obscure the important information, such as how much meat is actually contained in the food. We'll show you how the meat content in dry food is calculated and what you need to look out for in order to choose the best food for your dog.

To assess the quality of dog food, as a responsible dog owner you should pay close attention to the ingredients listed. Ready-made foods such as dry food are subject to a legal labeling requirement in accordance with the Feed Ordinance. This serves to protect consumers and animals by creating transparency and preventing deception.

So if a package of dry food states that it contains 70% fresh meat, that sounds promising at first – but you should be careful!

This is how the exact meat content in the feed is calculated.

It is legally required that fresh meat may not be processed directly into dry food for hygiene reasons. So before the dry food is produced, the manufacturer either adds dried meat to it - or uses a special manufacturing process in which they add fresh meat and dry it before the actual dry food production.

It is important to note that fresh meat contains around 70% water , which is removed from the meat during drying. So if 1 kg of fresh meat is dried, around 350 g of dried meat remains. If you take drying into account when the meat content is declared to be 70%, around 17% of dried meat remains after the production process. So if a dry food product says that it contains 70% fresh meat, this information is misleading!

How does the misleading information on feed come about?

Manufacturers of feedstuffs can choose different variants of declaration. With the open declaration, the components of a recipe are listed with their percentage share, for example: beef (25%), potatoes (24%), etc.

Semi-open declarations list the ingredients in order of quantity, but without any indication of measurements. Closed declarations only list feed groups, e.g. "meat and animal by-products". In this case, you will not find out anything about the exact composition.

Some feed manufacturers indicate the proportion of fresh meat that they added before starting feed production. So if the manufacturer writes "fresh chicken meat 60%" first, this is the raw meat that is still being processed. Fresh meat, however, contains 70% water, which must be removed after drying. In this case, the "fresh chicken meat" should no longer be the first thing in the composition.

Example of a misleading meat declaration in a dry food

Composition: Duck (44%) (of which duck meat 25%, dried duck meat 17%, duck fat 2%), potatoes (24%), sweet potatoes (19%), duck jus, minerals, Jerusalem artichoke, chickpeas, linseed, tomatoes, Mediterranean herb mixture, blackberries, raspberries, blueberries, blackcurrants, elderberries, aronia berries, nettle, dandelion, ginseng, mannan oligosaccharides (probiotic MOS), fructooligosaccharides (probiotic FOS), Yucca Schidigera extract

Nutritional additives per kg:

Vitamins: Vitamin A (as retinyl acetate) 21,871 IU, Vitamin D3 (as cholecalciferol) 1,471 IU, Vitamin E (as alpha tocopherol acetate) 710 IU, Taurine 1,000 mg; Trace elements: Calcium iodate anhydrous 1.58 mg, Selenium 0.23 mg, Iron 89 mg, Copper 23 mg, Zinc 159.8 mg, Manganese 44.7 mg; Amino acids: DL-methionine 2,126 mg, L-carnitine

analytical components






8th %

Raw ash

8th %

Crude fiber






The statement “duck meat 25%” refers to the amount of fresh meat that was added to the feed before drying. After production, about 6% of this remains as dried meat.