AvoDerm Cat Food Review

AvoDerm is made by Breeder’s Choice Pet Foods. Headquartered in Irwindale, California, they make foods for both dogs and cats. Along with meat and other ingredients, their foods feature California avocados. Contrary to what you often read on the Internet, the green flesh of the avocado is not harmful to pets. It’s an excellent source of Vitamin C, Vitamin K, Folate, and dietary fiber. Breeder’s Choice has been making pet food since 1947 and they have been making oven-baked kibble and biscuits since 1960. The AvoDerm line of pet foods was launched in 1982.

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Who Manufactures AvoDerm?

AvoDerm and Breeder’s Choice are owned by Central Garden & Pet Company. They make a number of pet products for dogs, cats, horses, birds, fish and reptiles. Some of their other dog and cat brands include Nylabone, Pinnacle, Four Paws, and Adams. Central Garden & Pet makes their dry foods in their own facility in Irwindale, California. Their canned foods are made by Simmons Pet Foods in Emporia, Kansas according to the last information we had.

AvoDerm Cat Food Recalls 2019

  • Breeder’s Choice had a recall for a single batch of Active Care Biscuits-Healthy Dog Treats in April 2013. We did not find any recalls for AvoDerm cat foods.

AvoDerm Cat Food Coupons 2019

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Overall AvoDerm Cat Food Reviews and Analysis

AvoDerm’s specialty formulas for cats include hairball, weight control, and kitten. They also make grain free foods, wet/canned foods, and a product line called Wild By Nature.

AvoDerm’s kitten cat food is AvoDerm® Chicken & Herring Meal Kitten Formula. This is a dry cat food. It is specially made for kittens and contains DHA for healthy brain development. The first five ingredients in the food are: Chicken Meal, Chicken Fat (Preserved with Mixed Tocopherols), Ground Whole Brown Rice, Ground Whole White Rice, and Peas. The guaranteed analysis for the formula shows 36 percent crude protein, 22 percent crude fat, 3 percent crude fiber and 10 percent moisture.

In terms of dry matter basis, these figures work out to 40 percent protein, 24.4 percent fat, 3.33 percent fiber, and 25.6 percent carbs. These percentages are well above the AAFCO minimum recommendations for growing kittens – 30 percent protein and 9 percent fat. The food is AAFCO-approved for growth.

AvoDerm® Adult Chicken & Herring Meal is a dry maintenance food for adult cats. The first five ingredients in the food are: Chicken Meal, Ground Whole Brown Rice, Ground Whole White Rice, Chicken Fat (Preserved with Mixed Tocopherols), and Dried Tomato Pomace. The guaranteed analysis for the food shows 32 percent crude protein, 20 percent crude fat, 3.5 percent crude fiber, and 10 percent moisture. In terms of dry matter basis, these percentages work out to 35.6 percent protein, 22.2 percent protein, 3.9 percent fiber, and 31.7 percent carbs. These percentages are far above the AAFCO minimum recommendations for adult cats (26 percent protein, 9 percent fat). It is AAFCO-approved for all life stages.

AvoDerm has several wet foods. They include salmon, ocean fish, chicken, indoor weight control, and tuna & crab entree in gravy. AvoDerm® Salmon Formula kitten and adult cat food is an all life stage food. The first five ingredients in the food are: Salmon, Salmon Broth, Turkey, Chicken Liver, and Rice Flour. The guaranteed analysis for the food shows 10 percent crude protein, 5 percent crude fat, 1.5 percent crude fiber, and 78 percent moisture. In dry matter terms, this works out to 45.5 percent protein, 22.7 percent fat, 6.8 percent fiber, and 15.9 percent carbs, well above the AAFCO requirements for both kittens and adults.

The guaranteed analyses for the wet foods vary so you should read the labels to check them out.

You can find AvoDerm’s canned formulas here.

AvoDerm also makes a grain free and gluten-free food called AvoDerm Natural® Grain Free dry cat food. This food comes in two formulas – grain free turkey meal; and grain free ocean fish & chicken meal. Looking at the grain free turkey meal formula, the first five ingredients in this food are: Turkey Meal, Peas, Tapioca Flour, Pea Flour, and Chicken Fat (Preserved with Mixed Tocopherols). The guaranteed analysis shows 31 percent crude protein, 17 percent crude fat, 4 percent crude fiber, and 10 percent moisture. Unlike other AvoDerm foods, this one does not provide the crude percentage for Ash in the food; and it doesn’t provide the Ash percent in the nutrient analysis. Ash is a measurement of the inorganic material in a food – the calcium, phosphorus, and other minerals. Dry foods typically have ash percentages around 7 percent. Since this information isn’t provided – and AvoDerm does provide it for their other foods, this suggests to us that it might be very high for this cat food. The food also contains a lot of plant and dairy sources of protein that raise the protein percentage in the food. The protein percentage is high, but a lot of that protein comes from non-meat sources. This is not a food we would recommend based on these factors.

AvoDerm® Wild By Nature is a relatively new product line for AvoDerm. It features four canned foods: Wild Caught Tuna and Prawns, Wild Caught Salmon, and Wild Caught Sardine. These canned foods are grain free and use wild caught fish. Using Wild By Nature Tuna and Prawns as an example, the first five ingredients in the food are: Tuna, Tuna Broth, Prawns, Sunflower Oil, and Tricalcium Phosphate. The guaranteed analysis for the food shows 13 percent crude protein, 2 percent crude fat, 1 percent crude fiber, and 82 percent moisture. The dry matter basis for the food shows: 72 percent protein, 11.1 percent fat, 5.6 percent fiber, and negligible carbohydrates. This food is AAFCO-approved for all life stages.

AvoDerm also has several canned entrees such as Chicken Chunks, Chicken & Duck, Salmon & Chicken, and others.

AvoDerm also makes an indoor hairball control formula, an indoor weight control formula with hairball relief, and a salmon and brown rice formula. These are all dry cat foods.

AvoDerm also makes cat food in pouches which are popular with some cats and their people/

The one issue we have with AvoDerm foods is that they routinely use Menadione Sodium Bisulfate Complex (Source Of Vitamin K Activity). This is synthetic Vitamin K and it is approved for use in pet food. However, there are a long list of negative effects associated with it. The use of synthetic Vitamin K is more than a little complicated. You can read more about it here. If you feed AvoDerm foods, this is something you will need to consider. If you really like AvoDerm then this one ingredient should probably not stop you from feeding the food but it is something that we hope AvoDerm will address in the future.

Individual Recipe Review AvoDerm® Tuna and Crab Entree in Gravy

If you are interested in feeding one of AvoDerm’s pet foods, you should know from the start that they are serious about including avocados in the formulas. For example, in AvoDerm Tuna and Crab Entree in Gravy the cat food contains avocado oil. Some of their other foods contain avocados. We know from experience that many dogs love avocados but we don’t know how cats feel about them. You’ve probably seen those messages and pictures that float around the Internet warning you about what you shouldn’t feed your pet. They usually include avocados but they aren’t quite accurate. You should not give your pet (dog or cat) the pit or stone from the center of an avocado. This is an obvious choking hazard. And the outer green skin of the avocado could make your pet vomit. But the delicious green flesh of the avocado? It’s just as good for your pet as it is for you – and it won’t hurt your dog or cat to eat it. We know people who have avocado trees and they have dogs that pull the avocados off the trees to eat them. They have healthy, beautiful skin and coats. So, AvoDerm really does use avocados in their recipes and we’ll assume that some cats will like the foods.

AvoDerm Tuna and Crab Entree in Gravy is one of AvoDerm’s canned/wet foods. It’s an all life stage, grain free food. It’s not unusual for a canned food to be grain free because most canned foods are relatively low in carbohydrates compared with dry foods. Many people today recommend canned foods for cats because they have more meat protein and more moisture than dry foods – things that are good for cats.

The first five ingredients of this food are: Tuna, Tuna Broth, Crab, Sunflower Oil, and Tapioca Starch. Some people warn about feeding cats too much fish, or feeding fish too often because cats can get addicted to it and not want to eat anything else, so if you do feed a food like this one, it’s probably a good idea to alternate it with some non-fish canned foods. You might want to make the fish recipes an occasional meal so your cat doesn’t get hooked on them.

Tuna is a great source of protein for your cat. It’s about 94 percent protein and 6 percent fat. It’s also a good source of Vitamin B6 and Phosphorus, and a very good source of Niacin, Vitamin B12 and Selenium. It also provides a marine source of omega-3 fatty acids. This food is “in gravy” which accounts for the 82 percent moisture of the food that comes from the tuna broth. This is probably the water in which the tuna is cooked, but it’s still gravy/moisture.

The food also contains crab – another ingredient that most cats will probably like. Crab is 88 percent protein and 12 percent fat. (You can see why canned foods are high in meat protein and low in carbs.) Crab is a good source of Vitamin C, Riboflavin, Niacin, Iron, Magnesium and Phosphorus, and a very good source of Vitamin B12, Zinc, Copper and Selenium. It’s also a good source of omega-3 fatty acids.

The fourth ingredient is sunflower oil. Sunflower oil is 100 percent fat. It’s a good source of Vitamin E and a great source of omega-6 fatty acids.

The fifth ingredient is tapioca starch. Tapioca starch provides hardly any nutrients to foods but it’s often used to provide texture to pet foods and as a thickening agent. It’s like a flour. It is a source of carbohydrates and not much else, but it serves a purpose.

Other ingredients of interest in this food include avocado oil which is good for your cat’s skin and coat; added vitamins and minerals; added taurine, which cats need; guar gum and carrageenan. Guar gum is a thickening agent made from guar beans. People are usually more interested in carrageenan – a thickener made from seaweed. It’s a natural thickener that’s been around for hundreds of years but some research has raised concerns about it. Most regulatory bodies in the U.S. and Europe consider it safe, though it is not allowed to be used in infant formula in the European Union.

We have already discussed the use of Menadione Sodium Bisulfate Complex, synthetic Vitamin K, in AvoDerm foods.

Overall, AvoDerm Tuna and Crab Entree in Gravy looks like a good cat food. If you are concerned about the carrageenan or the synthetic Vitamin K, you should not feed the food. However, we think that this food looks good otherwise.

Calorie Content:

Metabolizable Energy(calculated)829 KCAL/KG
Metabolizable Energy(calculated)118 KCAL/CAN

5-ounce can

Guaranteed Analysis

Crude Protein(min)10.00%
Crude Fat(min)2.00%
Crude Fiber(max)1.00%
Moisture(max)82.00%
Ash(max)3.00%
Magnesium(max)0.02%
Taurine(min)0.22%
Omega-6 Fatty Acid*(min)0.45%
Omega-3 Fatty Acid*(min)0.03%

Nutritional Statement

AvoDerm® Tuna & Crab Entree in Gravy is formulated to meet the nutritional levels established by the AAFCO Cat Food Nutrient Profiles for All Life Stages.

Dry Matter Basis: This food has an estimated 55.6 percent protein, 11.1 percent fat, 5.6 percent fiber, and 11.1 percent carbohydrates. (AAFCO recommendations for protein for adult cats are a minimum of 26 percent and 30 percent for growing kittens; and 9 percent fat for both adult cats and growing kittens .)

Final Thoughts

We think that many of the AvoDerm foods, both canned and dry, look good. The use of synthetic Vitamin K (Menadione Sodium Bisulfate Complex) in the foods bothers us. It’s up to you to decide if this ingredient bothers you enough to avoid these foods. We are less concerned about the use of carrageenan since so many other cat foods continue to use it. We like AvoDerm and think their foods are better than average so you should decide for yourself if these ingredients bother you.

Carlotta Cooper

Carlotta Cooper is a freelance writer and a long-time contributing editor for the weekly dog show magazine, Dog News. She is the author of The Dog Adoption Bible, the Dog Writers Association of America Adoptashelter.com award-winner for 2013. Additionally, Carlotta is the author of Canine Cuisine: 101 Natural Dog Food & Treat Recipes to Make Your Dog Health and Happy, as well as other books about pets. She is a guest writer for numerous website and blogs and a frequent pet food reviewer.

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1 comment

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  • Hi Carlotta,

    I greatly appreciate the information you provide on your site.
    I just looked at the 3oz cans I have of Avoderm Tuna and Crab and Avoderm Salmon and Chicken. Both cans state that the food is distributed in California and are a “product of Thailand”. I just wanted to share this information.

    Thanks,
    Mary

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