Pet Food FAQ'S

Frequently Asked Questions: Dog Food

How do I read a dog food label? Click Here

Do all ingredients in the pet food – including vitamins and minerals – originate from U.S. sources?

All the ingredients in Pet Botanics® Grain-Free Dry Dog Food originate in the United States with the exception of some of the Vitamins and Minerals which are sourced in South America (many of them are not available in the U.S.) and the Lamb Meal, which comes from New Zealand

Do the meat meal ingredients such as lamb meal include bones and internal organs?

No, the meals we use do NOT include bones and internal organs. Pet Botanics only uses real meat like Chicken and Salmon. We never use by-products or by-product meals.

Pet Botanics uses Lamb Meal in the Lamb dry food, as do almost all other “lamb” dog foods. The Lamb is sourced in New Zealand. The Lamb Meal formula also includes some chicken meal, because of the fatty acid content necessary for meeting the nutrient levels for a healthy puppy, adult or senior dog.

Are the meat ingredients human grade/quality or pet grade/quality?

By official definition, all pet food meat ingredients are considered pet grade. However many pet food companies use the same quality meat found in your grocery. Others do not, they use left-overs rejected for use in human food grade meats. Pet Botanics is made using USDA approved quality meat.

What is Ethoxyquin? Do your products contain Ethoxyquin?

Ethoxyquin is a chemical preservative that is used in some pet products and has been linked to serious illness including cancer. We do not use Ethoxyquin to preserve any of our products. We also do not use BHA or BHT for preservatives.

Why do dog food and treats contain SALT? Shouldn’t we avoid salt for our pets?

With the “humanization of pets” it’s important to remember that DOGS don’t have the same nutritional requirements as humans do. Dr. Jamie Schmidt, DVM says, “Like humans, animals also need to replenish trace minerals and sugars that are lost through daily activity.”

Even though the sodium content of prepared foods is very important to us in our diet, dogs don’t get cardiovascular diseases like humans do. Dogs and humans have different nutritional requirements than we do, including salt and sugar.

Salt and sugar are part of maintaining the proper balance of nutrients in a dog’s diet. Salt provides two essential electrolytes, sodium and chloride.* Although the sodium content in prepared foods is of concern to humans, it’s not as critical for dogs. The salt in our treats and dog foods are essential nutrients for dogs and are well within the ranges recommended by veterinary nutritionists and the rules of AAFCO (the Association of American Feed Control Officials).

*Most people believe that dogs don’t sweat. It’s true that most of the heat in their body is dispersed by panting, but they do sweat through their paws and that sweat includes the loss of electrolytes.


AAFCO has established the standard for dog food nutrition so that our pets receive the protein, moisture, fat, fiber and vitamins and minerals that they need to support a healthy life. That standard has been accepted by all 50 states.

AAFCO regulations on dog food dictate the amount of salt that is required for a dog’s diet, whether it be for Pet Botanics' All Life Stages (Puppies, Pregnant Dogs, Adult or Senior) or just for adult dogs. For more information about the AAFCO rules, go to

Look for this statement on the front of our bags, right under the colored flavor band: FOR ALL LIFE STAGES

Look for this statement on the side panel right under the Ingredient List and above the Guaranteed Analysis. Pet Botanics® Grain-Free Dry Dog Food 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." →View feeding guidelines

What About Sugar in dog food and treats?

Dogs don’t have a “sweet tooth” like children and adults do, so sugar isn’t added to dog food or treats as a “treat.” If they did crave sugar, there would probably be dog “candy,” so we’re happy to say that dogs much prefer the fish in our Healthy Omega Treats.

Again because of the trend to “humanize” our pets we think they like what we like and worse, that they “need” what we need – or “crave” what we crave. Sugar is used in small amounts to support a natural preservative system like “mixed tocopherols” (Vitamin E).

Unlike the television commercial that says that all sugars are the same, cane sugar is also referred to as raw sugar. It is “sucrose” that has been removed from the sugar cane but it hasn’t been refined (processed with chemicals) like white sugar so there are no chemical additives.