Zignature Dog Food
Zignature, made by Pets Global, Inc., makes limited ingredient dog foods in North America. They use no animal by-products, no chicken, no chicken fat, and no chicken eggs in their foods. Nor do they use corn, wheat, soy, or other grains. Their foods are also potato and gluten-free. They focus on a low-glycemic diet for dogs. The first ingredients in their foods are meat or fish; and the second ingredients are meat or fish meals. All of their products are manufactured in the United States. Meat proteins used in their foods include Turkey & Turkey meal, Lamb & Lamb meal, Trout & Salmon meal, Whitefish & Whitefish meal and Kangaroo & Kangaroo meal as the first and second ingredients. Zignature’s food include both kibble and canned foods. Pets Global, Inc. has North American headquarters in North Hollywood, California.
Who Manufactures Zignature?
Per Zignature, their dry food is made by Tuffy’s/KLN in Minnesota and Performance Pet in South Dakota makes their canned dog foods.
Zignature Dog Food Recalls 2017
We did not find any recalls for Zignature in the FDA database on in an online search.
Zignature Dog Food Coupons 2017
Check Chewy.com and other online pet food sites for discounts on Zignature foods. You can visit the Zignature Facebook page to stay advised of upcoming specials and new products.
Zignature Dog Food Overview
Zignature’s limited ingredient dog foods may appeal to many dog lovers seeking a good food for dogs with allergies or food sensitivities. Most of their foods have single sources of meat protein. We’ve already mentioned that they are free of chicken, chicken eggs, corn, wheat, soy, and other grains, as well as potatoes. They are low glycemic and gluten-free. Just these facts may make them a good choice for some dogs with a sensitive stomach.
Zignature currently offers seven kibble formulas and seven canned formulas. The canned foods have no guar gum and no carrageenan. Carrageenan, in particular, has been studied as an intestinal irritant and possible cause of some health issues, especially in Europe, though it is widely used in the U.S. and around the world in a variety of human foods and pet foods. Zignature’s canned foods include: Kangaroos formula, Whitefish formula, Duck formula, Lamb formula, Trout & Salmon formula, Turkey formula, and Zssential formula (a combination of meat proteins). These are all life stage foods and AAFCO-approved.
Zignature’s canned foods feature meat and meat broth, peas, carrots, chickpeas, and agar-agar as a stabilizer and thickener. Other ingredients include cranberries and blueberries and salt. The canned foods also have chelated/proteinated minerals that are easier for dogs to absorb during digestion, and added vitamins.
For example, here are the ingredients for the Zignature canned duck formula:
Duck, Duck Broth, Peas, Duck Meal, Carrots, Chickpeas, Agar-Agar, Salt, Choline Chloride, Potassium Chloride, Blueberries, Cranberries, Minerals (Zinc Proteinate, Iron Proteinate, Copper Proteinate, Manganese Proteinate, Sodium Selenite, Calcium Iodate), Vitamins (Vitamin E Supplement, Thiamine Mononitrate, Niacin Supplement, Calcium Pantothenate, Biotin, Vitamin A Supplement, Riboflavin Supplement, Vitamin B12 Supplement, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Vitamin D3 Supplement, Folic Acid)
The Guaranteed Analysis for this food shows:
Crude Protein …………….8.0% (min)
Crude Fat……………………4.5% (min)
Crude Fiber………………..1.2% (max)
The dry matter basis comes out to 36.5 percent protein; 20.5 percent fat; 5.5 percent fiber; and 24 percent carbohydrates. It has 383 kcal per 13 ounce can.
All of Zignature’s canned foods have similar figures, ranging from 9 to 11.5 percent crude protein. The Whitefish formula tops out with the most calories at 425 kcal per can but they all have over 380 kcal per 13-ounce can.
Zignature’s kibbles include the same meat proteins: Kangaroo formula, Whitefish formula, Duck formula, Lamb formula, Trout & Salmon Meal formula, Turkey formula, and Zssential formula. The kibbles are also AAFCO-approved for all life stages.
These are limited ingredient dog foods, so they do not have as many ingredients as many foods. Looking over Zignature’s dry foods, you will find meat and a meat meal as the first two ingredients, followed by peas and chickpeas, then things like pea flour and pea protein, flaxseed, dehydrated alfalfa meal, and natural flavors. After these ingredients you will find chelated/proteinated minerals and added vitamins (sourced from France).
If we use the Kangaroo formula kibble as an example, you will find the following ingredients:
Kangaroo, Kangaroo Meal, Peas, Chickpeas, Pea Flour, Sunflower Oil (preserved with Citric Acid), Flaxseed, Dehydrated Alfalfa Meal, Pea Protein, Natural Flavors, Calcium Carbonate, Salt, Choline Chloride, Minerals (Zinc Proteinate, Iron Proteinate, Copper Proteinate, Manganese Proteinate, Cobalt Proteinate), Potassium Chloride, Vitamins (Vitamin A Acetate, Vitamin D3 Supplement, Vitamin E Supplement, Niacin, d-Calcium Pantothenate, Thiamine Mononitrate, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Riboflavin Supplement, Folic Acid, Biotin, Vitamin B12 Supplement), Lactic Acid, Calcium Iodate, Sodium Selenite, Preserved With Mixed Tocopherols.
In this case, the Guaranteed Analysis for the food shows:
Crude Protein ……………26.0% (min)
Crude Fat……………………14.0% (min)
Crude Fiber………………..4.50% (max)
The dry matter basis for the food works out to 28.9 percent protein, 15.6 percent fat, 5 percent fiber, and 41.7 percent carbohydrates. It contains 413 kcal per cup. The high carbohydrate percentage in the food – a grain free food – suggests that this food has copious amounts of plant matter from the peas, chickpeas, and pea flour. We would guess that quite a bit of the protein in the food is also coming from these sources, along with the flaxseed, alfalfa meal, and pea protein. While some of these ingredients provide valuable nutrients, dog food companies also use them to increase the protein percentage in dog food. But dogs are not able to digest plant protein as well as meat protein – that is one of the complaints about some grains and it’s also true for some of these ingredients. We find a number of complaints online from owners who say that their dogs have large poops and have to use the bathroom more often when eating this food. Some owners also report their dogs have gas and very smelly poop. You can add probiotics or other supplements to your dog’s diet which may help (probiotics are not included in this food), but you shouldn’t have to. If you are feeding Zignature’s limited ingredient dog foods because your dog has a sensitive stomach, we hate to see your dog having to use the bathroom so much. All of this food that is passing through your dog (which you have to pick up) means your dog is not getting the nutrients from it. That’s why dog lovers like to see small, firm poop – it means the dog’s body is absorbing more of the nutrients in the food. Small, firm poop is usually a sign of a good quality dog food.
This doesn’t mean these foods aren’t very good. Many people (and their dogs) really like them. We just wanted to give you the warning in case your dog happens to be one that has problems digesting the food. Sorry for this detour to talk about dog poop. Dog lovers probably spend more time discussing poop than anyone else on earth.
Zignature’s other kibbles actually have even more crude protein than the kangaroo formula. The turkey formula has 31 percent crude protein and 18 percent crude fat. Most of the other formulas are also quite high in fiber, coming in around 6.5 percent crude fiber. This is much higher than most commercial dog foods and, again, we warn that many owners complain that their dogs have large poops and have to relieve themselves several times per day. The company defends these fiber percentages saying they are good for colon health but not every dog owner likes them.
Calories for Zignature’s kibbles generally stay around 420-430, though the Zssential formula jumps up to 466 kcal per cup. We would not actually consider the Zssential formula to be a limited ingredient dog food since it contains several different meat proteins and more ingredients than the other formulas.
Overall, if you have a dog with a sensitive stomach or certain food sensitivities, we think you may be able to find some good quality canned food or kibble from Zignature but we suggest that you carefully read the ingredients and look at the dry matter figures for any food you are considering to make sure that it’s something your dog could eat.
Zignature Whitefish Formula Dog Food Review
Zignature has seven dry dog foods. We would consider most of them to be limited ingredient diets. They certainly have fewer ingredients than most so-called LID foods. The whitefish formula falls into that category.
Limited ingredient diets are usually designed for dogs with sensitive stomachs, food allergies, or food sensititivites. If you are looking for a food that your dog can eat for one of these reasons, you already know that it can be hard to find a good food. In some cases people simply prefer to feed a limited ingredient diet to their dogs even though their dogs don’t have any food issues. That’s fine, too. There’s nothing wrong with feeding a food that has fewer ingredients.
The first five ingredients in this food are: Whitefish, Whitefish Meal, Peas, Chickpeas, and Pea Flour.
Per Zignature, the fish used in their foods is ethoxyquin-free. Whitefish is not a particular species of fish but includes a number of similar fish such as cod, haddock and others. It’s widely used for human food and in pet food. It is 61 percent protein and 39 percent fat. Whitefish is a good source of Niacin, Vitamin B6, Vitamin B12, Phosphorus and Selenium. It’s also a very good marine source of omega-3 fatty acid. Since whitefish and whitefish meal are the first and second ingredients in this food, they should provide a very good source of protein. Some dogs may have previously eaten whitefish in other dog food, but it should be novel to many dogs.
The third ingredient in this food is peas. There are pros and cons to peas in dog food. Nutritionally, they are 22-24 percent protein, 76 percent carbs, and 2 percent fat. They are a good source of Vitamin A, Riboflavin, Niacin, Vitamin B6, Folate, Magnesium, Phosphorus and Copper, and a very good source of Dietary Fiber, Vitamin C, Vitamin K, Thiamin and Manganese. They are often used in grain free dog foods in place of grains. However, many dog food companies use them in the same way that corn was previously used – as a plant source of protein. This allows the company to use less meat protein. Some dogs can have trouble digesting peas in large amounts. This could be a particular problem if your dog already has a sensitive stomach.
The fourth ingredient in this food is chickpeas or garbanzo beans. These legumes have many of the same pros and cons as peas. They are 19 percent protein, 68 percent carbohydrates, and 13 percent fat. They are also a good source of Dietary Fiber, Copper, and a very good source of Folate and Manganese. Like peas, many dog food companies add chickpeas to dog food as a way to increase the protein percentage without using meat or grains.
Both peas and chickpeas are low-glycemic and gluten-free, but these concerns can be used as marketing gimmicks to hide the fact that the dog food has less meat protein. The meat in your dog’s food is also low-glycemic and gluten-free but dog food companies still replace meat with peas and chickpeas.
The fifth ingredient in this food is pea flour. Pea flour (or peasemeal) is usually produced from yellow or green field peas. It was traditionally made in Scotland by people who could not afford to eat meat. Today it is also made in North America using green field peas. Used in dog food, it is a way to increase the protein percentage without adding meat.
Other ingredients of note in this food include Sunflower Oil (preserved with Citric Acid) – a source of Vitamin E and omega-6 fatty acid. We have already mentioned flaxseed which is a source of omega-3 fatty acid and protein. Dehydrated alfalfa meal – 42 percent protein – another plant source of protein. And the food contains “natural flavors” which could be anything that the FDA considers “natural.” Otherwise the food contains chelated/proteinated minerals that allow your dog to absorb the minerals more easily and added vitamins.
Zignature Whitefish formula contains 429 kcal/cup. This makes it moderate in terms of calories.
Zignature® Whitefish Formula for dogs is formulated to meet the nutritional levels established by the Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO) Dog Food Nutrient Profiles for all life stages.
Crude Protein ……………29.0% (min)
Crude Fat……………………14.0% (min)
Crude Fiber………………..5.0% (max)
Omega 6 Fatty Acids……..2.4% (min)
Omega 3 Fatty Acids*…….0.4% (min)
*Not recognized as an essential nutrient by
the AAFCO Dog Food Nutrient Profiles.
The dry matter basis figures for this food are: protein 32.2 percent; fat 15.6 percent; fiber 5.6 percent; carbohydrates 37.8 percent.
This food has above average protein and average fat compared to many commercial dog foods. The fiber content is higher than normal for most kibbles; and the carb percentage is high compared to many natural/holistic dog foods.
However, we need to point out that the peas, chickpeas, pea flour, flaxseed, and dried alfalfa meal in this food all seem specifically designed to increase the protein percentage of the food. We think that a lot of the protein in this food comes from plant sources which are more difficult for dogs to digest, especially a dog with a sensitive stomach or food sensitivities. For this reason, we are reluctant to recommend Zignature for any dog with any dietary problems.
If you are simply looking for a nice grain free dog food for your dog and he doesn’t have a sensitive stomach or any food sensitivities, then you may be happy with these foods. So, please read the ingredients and check the dry matter basis for the foods before buying.
Where can you buy Zignature dog food?
You can buy Zignature on Chewy.com and other online pet food sites. You can also check the “Where To Buy” page on the Zignature web site.
There are definitely some things we like about Zignature – the limited ingredients, the meat and meat meal as the first two ingredients, no artificial flavors, colors, or preservatives. And if your dog can’t eat chicken or eggs, these foods may be a lifesaver for you. We are disappointed that the company uses so much plant protein in their foods and not as much meat protein as we could wish. Granted, they do have a few foods that have more meat protein, but some dog lovers will probably just look at the guaranteed analysis and see higher percentages for crude protein and think that it’s all meat. We also have to mention again that there are quite a few comments online from owners who say their dogs are pooping large amounts – and often – when they eat these foods. This bears further witness to the plants material in the food from the peas and the higher fiber. So, if your dog has a sensitive stomach or food sensitivities, read the ingredients carefully and check the dry matter basis to see if he can eat some of these foods. You might find a couple that your dog can eat. If your dog doesn’t have any particular dietary problems and you just want a good grain free dog food, you should still check the ingredients and the dry matter basis figures. Zignature might be a food he would like.