Pet Food Math Cheat Sheet

Are you feeding a properly balanced diet for your dog (and cats)?

Or are you feeding a diet high in fat and carbohydrates?

Where do the calories come from?

With the Pet Food Math Cheat Sheet you can analyze and compare any type of pet food.  Dry kibble, canned food, baked kibble, freeze-dried, raw, etc. The most important information is how many grams (g) of protein per 1,000 calories and what percentage of calories come from protein, fat, and carbohydrates.

The Pet Food Math Cheat Sheet will do all the work. Just enter the information from the "Guaranteed Analysis" and the "Calorie Content" on the food label and this cheat sheet will do all the math so you can compare any type of food.

In weight loss studies, higher dietary protein resulted in greater weight loss, and dogs and cats maintained greater lean muscle mass. Hannah SS, Laflamme DP. Increased dietary protein spared lean body mass during weight loss in dogs. Increased Dietary Protein Promotes Fat Loss and Reduces Loss of Lean Body Mass During Weight Loss in Cats.  Dorothy P. Laflamme, DVM, PhD, Steven S. Hannah, PhD

Steve Brown pet food formulator states that protein providing 49% of calories is the gold standard. Ideal calories breakdown would be, Protein 49%, Fat 44%, and Carbohydrate 6%.  Unlocking the Canine Ancestral Diet: Healthier Dog Food the ABC by Steve Brown.



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Pet Food Math Cheat Sheet
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Column 1        “GA”    Guaranteed Analysis on the food label

Column 2        “DM”   Dry Matter basis after all moisture removed. (water)

Column 3        “kcal g”  Number of calories per gram of protein, fat, and fiber in pet food. (Human food has slightly higher calories.)

Column 4        “kcal g (P,F,C) Number of calories per gram of food for protein, fat, and carbs.

Column 5        “% kcal”  Percentage of calories from protein, fat, and carbs.

Column 6        “g-1000 kcal”  Number of grams of protein, fat, and carbs per 1,000 calories.

Column 7        “kcal – 1000 kcal” Number of calories from protein, fat, and carbs per 1,000 calories.

Column 8        “% kcal” Percentage of calories from protein, fat, and carbs in food.

kcal/kg            Calories per kg. A kg is equal to 2.2 lbs. There are 1000 grams in a kg. (Kilogram)

kcal               kcal is the same as a calorie in human foods.

Protein          Protein can come from animal or plant based foods. Protein is made up of amino acids. Animal based protein is generally of higher quality protein and contains balanced amino acids.

Fat                   Fat provides the most calories and energy.

Fiber               Fiber is classified as a carbohydrate but it is not digestible. (provides no calories/energy)

Moisture         Water

Ash                Ash is what is left over after heating food at a very high temperature; generally the mineral content. 

Carbs            Carbohydrates supply necessary starches to make dry kibble. Dogs and cats have no requirement for carbohydrates. They can derive all the energy they need  from protein and fat.