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9 Best (Healthiest) Dog Foods that Contain Lamb and Rice

Protein is the most important nutritional component of a high-quality dog food formula, but not all proteins are created equal. Some proteins are high in fat and cholesterol while others are lean and nutrient-rich. The same can be said for carbohydrates – some are better than others in terms of their digestibility and nutrition. Keep reading to learn more about the nutritional benefits of lamb and rice and to receive recommendations for high-quality dog food formulas featuring these two ingredients.

The Nutritional Benefits of Lamb and Rice

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Many Limited Ingredient Diets for dogs are made with lamb and rice because these two ingredients offer excellent nutritional quality. Lamb is the meat of a young sheep and it is rich in protein and omega-3 fatty acids – it is also an excellent source for key nutrients like zinc, selenium, and Vitamin B12. Rice – brown rice, in particular – is a healthy and digestible carbohydrate for dogs. It offers excellent digestibility and nutrition, not to mention dietary fiber. These two ingredients in combination tend to make for a nutrient-rich, highly digestible diet for most dogs – as long as they aren’t sensitive to grains.

As a source of protein, lamb is a great ingredient for dogs. A 3-ounce serving of lamb contains about 175 calories, compared to nearly 215 calories for a same-sized portion of lean ground beef. Though these recommendations are intended for humans, lamb meets the criteria for being a lean meat according to FDA recommendations – it contains fewer than 10 grams of fat per 3-ounce serving and has fewer than 100 milligrams of cholesterol. It is important to note that the type of fat found in lamb is very beneficial for dogs – a 3-ounce serving of lamb contains almost five times the omega-3 fatty acid and alpha linoleic acid in a serving of beef the same size. Lamb also contains other beneficial nutrients including zinc, phosphorus, selenium, vitamin B3 and vitamin B12.

30% Off Select Lamb & Rice Dog Food

Both white rice and brown rice are common ingredients in pet food, though brown rice is the healthier of the two options. Per cup of steamed rice, white rice contains about 206 calories and brown rice contains about 216 calories. Brown rice contains about 1.8 grams of fat, 45 grams carbohydrate, and 5 grams of protein per 1 cup serving (about 195 grams). White rice contains just 0.4 grams of fat and also has 45 grams of carbohydrate, but just 4.3 grams of protein. One of the main differences between the two is in their fiber content – brown rice has 3.5 grams of fiber while white rice has just 0.6 grams.

Brown rice is richer in essential nutrients than white rice because it is the whole grain – white rice has had the nutrient-rich bran and germ removed. Both of these grains are considered highly digestible for dogs, with the exception of dogs who have grain allergies or sensitivities. In terms of nutrient content, brown rice is rich in selenium, phosphorus, manganese, magnesium, copper, and vitamin B3. White rice contains many of these same nutrients, but in a lesser amount. It is, however, higher in starch so it doesn’t need to be cooked as long and it is rich in omega-6 fatty acids. Both brown rice and white rice come in short-grain and long-grain varieties, though most pet food manufacturers don’t distinguish between the two in their list of ingredients.

The Top Dog Foods Made with Lamb and Rice

Any high-quality pet food formula that lists lamb in the name should also list lamb (or lamb meal) as the main ingredient – you should never buy a dog food that doesn’t have some kind of protein as the first ingredient. Though rice is a healthy ingredient for dogs, as a carbohydrate it is secondary to protein but should still appear somewhere near the top of the list if it is named in the title. If you are thinking about switching your dog to a lamb and rice dog food, consider one of our top three choices reviewed below:

Natural Balance L.I.D. Lamb Meal & Brown Rice Formula Dry Dog Food Buy It

First 5 Ingredients : Lamb Meal, Brown Rice, Brewers Rice, Rice Bran, Canola Oil (preserved with mixed tocopherols)

Natural Balance L.I.D. Lamb Meal & Brown Rice Formula Dry Dog Food

This brand of pet food offers the ideal combination of quality and affordability. This company uses premium ingredients like real meat, whole vegetables, and healthy fats to formulate their recipes because they believe in the power of a healthy diet for pets. None of their recipes are made with fillers like corn, wheat, or soy, and they don’t use any artificial additives as well. In terms of their product selection, Natural Balance offers a wide selection of products, both dry food and wet food. Not only do they offer an assortment of original and grain-free recipes, but they also offer formulas for different life stages and breed sizes.

If you’re in the market for a lamb and rice dog food formula, consider this Natural Balance Limited Ingredient Lamb Meal & Brown Rice Formula. This recipe features lamb meal as the first ingredient and fresh lamb as the sixth. The fact that both of these ingredients are included speaks to the high protein content of this formula – fresh lamb contains as much as 70% moisture by volume but lamb meal is highly concentrated at a moisture level closer to 10%. Whole grain brown rice is the second ingredient on the list and brewers rice appears just after. This recipe is specially formulated for adult dogs, made with the ideal ratio of protein and fat to maintain your dog’s lean muscle mass. With brown rice as the primary carbohydrate, it also offers good digestibility.

Canidae Life Stages Lamb Meal & Rice Formula Dry Food Buy It

First 5 Ingredients : Lamb Meal, Brown Rice, Cracked Pearled Barley, Rice Bran, Peas

Canidae Life Stages Lamb Meal & Rice Formula Dry Food

Canidae is an independent and family-owned company that has been producing premium pet foods for more than two decades. This brand originally set out to make pet foods that made a difference in the life of pets, and that is exactly what they did. Canidae dog food is loaded with premium-quality ingredients in ideal ratios to support the nutritional needs of dogs in all life stages. This brand offers a wide selection of products divided into several product lines. The Limited Ingredient Diet line features simple recipes made with fresh meat and whole foods, designed for dogs with food allergies and sensitivities. The Under the Sun line offers the ideal combination of quality and affordability and the PURE line features grain-free recipes.

The Life Stages line of Canidae dog foods is designed for multi-dog households and includes recipes formulates for dogs in all life stages, all breeds, and all sizes. This Canidae Life Stages Lamb Meal & Rice Formula Dry Food is a great example of a product from this lineup. It features protein-rich lamb meal as the first ingredient, followed by brown rice. With lamb meal as the main source of protein, you can be assured that this recipe is meat-rich – it also doesn’t hurt that fresh lamb is listed as well. The brown rice is complemented by cracked pearled barley, rice bran, peas, and millet to ensure excellent digestibility as well as plenty of carbohydrate energy. All in all, this recipe is designed as a nutritionally-dense formula for all dogs and it is full of natural flavor as well.

ProPac Ultimates Lamb Meal & Brown Rice Formula Buy It

First 5 Ingredients : Lamb Meal, Brown Rice, White Rice, Peas, Rice Bran

ProPac Ultimates Lamb Meal & Brown Rice Formula

The ProPac Ultimates brand is so-named because they claim to be “the ultimate in pet nutrition”. This company understands that different pets have different nutritional needs, so they design their formulas to meet those needs. ProPac offers a variety of formulas including original, grain-free, and gluten-free varieties. This company also understands the importance of meat as the primary ingredient with a balance of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids for immune support and healthy skin and coat. They also load up their formulas with antioxidants and healthy supplements. Though this brand may not offer as much variety as other pet food companies, the recipes they do offer are of high quality. There are original and grain-free recipes to choose from, each featuring a premium protein and digestible carbohydrate option.

The ProPac Ultimates Lamb Meal & Brown Rice Formula is a great recipe because it is nutrient-rich and highly digestible. This formula was developed to provide the ultimate in canine nutrition, loaded with protein and healthy fats but free from corn, wheat, and soy. This recipe features premium-quality lamb meal as the main ingredient with both brown rice and white rice not far behind. The lamb provides your dog with essential amino acids to maintain strong, healthy muscles while the rice supports his energy needs as well as his digestion. This recipe is also supplemented with essential fatty acids for healthy skin and coat plus beneficial supplements for nutritional balance. All in all, it is a great recipe for adult dogs.

If you’re looking for a meat-rich diet for your dog that also offers good digestibility, a lamb and rice formula might be a good option to consider. When you start shopping for lamb and rice dog food, take into consideration our top three choices as reviewed above.

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