Diamond Pet Foods

Ingredient Glossary


Want to know what a particular ingredient does for your pet? Read the ingredient definitions below for more information.


A


Apples
A natural source of dietary fiber, vitamin C and B vitamins.
Ascorbic Acid
Vitamin C. Acts as an antioxidant in the feed to preserve shelf life and prevent rancidity. Non-essential vitamin for dogs and cats as they can produce adequate amounts on their own.

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B


Barley (Cracked Pearl)
Whole grain. Has 50% more protein than rice. Slow burning carbohydrate source, helps control blood sugar levels and helps keep the pet feeling satisfied for a longer period of time.
Beef
Lean muscle meat from beef cattle. This is an excellent protein source providing optimal amino acid nutrition for lean muscle mass and overall good health.
Beef Meal
A dry protein source made up of beef meat and bone, ground together and cooked. It is a quality protein source as well as a natural source of vitamins and minerals.
Beet Pulp (Dried Plain)
Dried remains of sugar beets after sugar is removed. Gray in color. Moderately fermentable fiber source to provide cells in colon with energy and to promote the good bacteria in the intestines. Considered to be one of the best fiber sources for optimal stool quality.
Beta Carotene
A powerful antioxidant derived from the orange or yellow color in fruits in vegetables. Beta carotene is converted into vitamin A inside the body.
Bifidobacterium lactis
A probiotic, or good bacteria, that is specific to the canine and feline digestive systems. It is a component of our proprietary probiotic blends, K9 Strain Probiotics™ and Viables Probiotics™, added to our Diamond Naturals formulas to help support healthy digestion.
Biotin
B vitamin required for metabolism of fats, carbohydrates, proteins, fatty acids and non-essential amino acids. Water soluble vitamin. Required for normal skin and haircoat.
Blueberries
Rich in fiber and antioxidants, blueberries are a natural boost to the immune system.
Brewers Dried Yeast
Non-fermentable yeast that provides B-complex vitamins and proteins. Flavor enhancer.
Brewers Rice
Highly digestible carbohydrate made up from broken fragments of rice.
Brown Rice
Whole grain brown rice ground to a powder. Whole grains are metabolized more slowly, providing a steady supply of energy throughout the day. Source of fiber, carbohydrates, and vitamin B.

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C


Calcium Pantothenate
Source of pantothenic acid, a B vitamin. This vitamin is necessary for normal intestinal function, growth and haircoat color.
Carrots
Carrots are rich in vitamin A and like sweet potatoes and pumpkin, get their color from beta-carotene, a powerful antioxidant.
Chia Seed
Chia seed contains protein, fiber and fat, and is naturally rich in omega-3 fatty acids. Also containing calcium, phosphorus and manganese, chia seed is a natural source of minerals.
Chicken
Food grade chicken that has been mechanically separated from the bone. Never frozen, arrives less than 24 hours after it is processed. Enhances palatability, low ash.
Chicken By-Product Meal
Animal source protein, made up mostly of internal organs such as liver, digestive tract, and kidneys. The intestines are a good source of smooth muscle protein. Fifteen percent of the meal includes meat and bone. No feathers. This ingredient is very digestible and very low in ash.
Chicken Fat
The most digestible animal fat source available. This is a liquid at room temperature which indicates a higher level of polyunsaturated fatty acids compared to fats which are solid at room temperature and are higher in saturated fatty acids. A source of Arachidonic acid (elongated form of Omega-6) and Linoleic (Omega-6) Acid.
Chicken Meal
Lean carcass (muscle and bone). No feathers or internal organs. We use a specially processed, low ash meal. Protein, phosphorus and calcium come from the meal.
Chicory Root (dried)
A moderately fermentable carbohydrate source. Fermentation of chicory root (FOS-fructooligosaccharide) in the colon produces short chain fatty acids that are an energy source for colonocytes (cells lining the colon) as well as for the good bacteria in the colon.
Choline Chloride
A B-complex vitamin. Choline is required for normal nervous system function, normal growth in young animals and protection of the kidneys. It can be synthesized in the liver, but is a dietary requirement.
Chondroitin Sulfate
A naturally occurring substance in the body, this is a building block for normal healthy cartilage. It also helps block harmful enzymes from damaging the cartilage. This supplement is derived from poultry cartilage.
Coconut
This tropical fruit is rich in fiber and fat, and a natural source of omega-6 fatty acids and many vitamins and minerals such as vitamin C, iron and potassium.
Copper Proteinate
Chelated form of copper. Copper is an important mineral for maintaining coat color and also regulates reproduction in cats. Chelated minerals are attached to amino acids for better absorption from the digestive tract.
Copper Sulfate
An inorganic form of copper, a required mineral element. Copper is involved in normal reproduction as well as responsible for maintaining normal coat pigmentation.
Corn Gluten Meal
The dried residue from corn after the removal of the large part of the starch, gluten, and germ from the processes employed in the manufacture of corn syrup. It is an excellent low ash protein source which is highly digestible.
Cranberries
All-natural source of vitamin C and potassium. May have some ability to acidify the urine, but not consistently. Some sources list it as having an ability to block bacteria from adhering to the bladder wall, thus preventing bladder infections.

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D


DL-Methionine
An essential amino acid which contains sulfur. Important for both dogs and cats, but more critical in cats since they have an increased demand for this amino acid. This is also a urine acidifier.
Docosahexanoic Acid (DHA)
Our puppy and kitten formulas supply natural DHA (Docosahexaenoic Acid) through easy-to-digest salmon oil, optimizing your pet's potential for a healthy mind and body. DHA is a natural Omega-3 fatty acid critical for brain and vision development. A growing puppy or kitten first receives DHA from its mother's milk. Studies show that puppies and kittens can greatly benefit from DHA long after weaning.

It's just another way we are committed to the total health and happiness of your pet.
Dried Kelp
Seaweed plant that is a fiber and iodine source. Helps produce small, firm stools. May reduce stool odor.
Dried Trichoderma longibrachiatum fermentation extract
A digestive enzyme derived from yeast extracts, this ingredient helps promote healthy digestion.

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E


Egg Product
Cooked and dried whole eggs, free of shells and other non egg material. A high quality, highly digestible source of protein.
Enterococcus faecium (dried fermentation products of)
A probiotic, or beneficial bacteria, that helps promote a healthy digestive system by suppressing populations of the harmful bacteria within the GI tract. Also supports a healthy immune system.

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F


Ferrous Sulfate
Inorganic form of iron. Added to enhance the iron content of the food. Iron is responsible for the transport of oxygen throughout the body.
Fish Meal
Whole Menhaden fish, cooked and ground to a meal. Naturally preserved. Good source of protein, omega-3 (linolenic) fatty acids, and minerals.
Flavor (natural)
Natural ingredient that is applied to the outside of the kibble to enhance the flavor and acceptance of the dry pet food. Can be from vegetable or chicken sources. (It does not contain MSG.) Examples are parsley or other herbs and hydrolyzed proteins (processed so the average molecular weight of the protein is too small to be detected by the immune system which helps avoid adverse reactions in allergic pets. There is no intact protein from the chicken.)
Flaxseed
An all-natural plant source of Omega-3 fatty acids. Grown in Canada. Very palatable and stable.
Folic Acid
A water soluble B vitamin necessary for formation of red blood cells and for normal function of the nervous system and reproduction (fetal development).

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G


Garbanzo beans
Garbanzo beans, or chickpeas, are a legume.They are high in protein and have a low glycemic index. These unique ingredients are an excellent addition to a grain free formulation.
Glucosamine Hydrochloride
This is a naturally occurring substance that is a building block for normal healthy joints. It is obtained from the shells of shrimp, lobsters and crabs.
Ground Corn
The whole corn grain ground to a flour consistency. Highly digestible carbohydrate source as well as source of protein and vitamins. All incoming corn is tested for aflatoxin.
Ground Rice
Ground rice is white rice that is received as a ground ingredient, instead of whole. Rice is a highly digestible carbohydrate ingredient that supplies energy for active pets.

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I


Iron Proteinate
Chelated form of iron. Necessary for the transport of oxygen throughout the body. Chelated minerals are attached to amino acids for better absorption from the digestive tract.

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K


Kale
A cruciferous vegetable that is extremely low in calories. Kale has extremely high levels of vitamins A and C.
Kelp (Dried)
Kelp is a healthy seaweed plant, rich in iodine, important for normal thyroid function. It is also a fiber and helps produce firm stools and may reduce stool odor.

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L


L-Carnitine
A vitamin-like substance that helps maintain normal metabolism. This helps the body burn fat for energy and helps normalize blood sugar levels. Also helps large breed puppies maintain lean body condition and strong bones.
Lactobacillus acidophilus (dried fermentation product of)
This is another of the probiotic ingredients included in some of our formulations. Probiotics are living bacteria that are added at the end of the cooking process. They help support the healthy populations of bacteria in the digestive system while suppressing the pathogenic bacteria that also reside there.
Lactobacillus casei
A probiotic, or beneficial bacteria, that helps promote a healthy digestive system by suppressing populations of the harmful bacteria within the GI tract. Also supports a healthy immune system.
Lactobacillus plantarum (dried fermentation product of)
A probiotic ingredient, included in some of our formulations. Probiotics are living bacteria that are added at the end of the cooking process. They help support the healthy populations of bacteria in the digestive system while suppressing the pathogenic bacteria that also reside there.
Lactobacillus reuteri
A probiotic, or good bacteria, that is specific to the canine digestive system. It is a component of our proprietary K9 Strain Probiotics, added to our Diamond Naturals dog formulas to help support healthy digestion.
Lamb
Food grade lamb, mechanically removed from the bone. Enhances palatability, low ash. Purchased from New Zealand.
Lamb Meal
Lean carcass of lambs (muscle and bone), cooked and ground to a fine consistency. Purchased from Australia, a certified Scrapie free country. Scrapie is the sheep version of Bovine Spongiform.

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M


Manganese Proteinate
Chelated form of manganese. Manganese is important for proper bone formation, growth and reproduction. Chelated minerals are attached to amino acids for better absorption from the digestive tract.
Manganese Sulfate
The manganese salt of sulfuric acid is needed for proper bone formation, growth and reproduction. Manganese is a micro mineral which functions as a component of several cell enzymes that catalyze metabolic reactions. Naturally occurring Manganese deficiency has not been reported in dogs or cats.
Manganous oxide
The oxide form of manganese that is needed for proper bone formation, growth and reproduction. Manganese is a micro mineral which functions as a component of several cell enzymes that catalyze metabolic reactions. Naturally occurring Manganese deficiency has not been reported in dogs or cats.
Meat meal
Meat meal is a dry protein ingredient made from the meat and bone of ruminants such as cows and sheep. It provides amino acids as well as minerals, such as calcium and phosphorus, to the diet.
Milk (skim)
Dairy source of protein and calcium.
Millet
A whole grain. Higher in protein than corn, rich in amino acids (lysine, methionine, and threonine). Low in tannins, which limit palatability and inhibit protein digestion.

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N


Natural chicken flavor
A natural product made mostly from chicken livers. This ingredient is used on the outside of the kibble to enhance flavor.
Natural Flavor
A natural product made mostly from chicken livers. This ingredient is used on the outside of the kibble to enhance flavor.
Niacin
Vitamin B3. Important for maintenance of hair, skin, nervous system and energy metabolism. Dogs synthesize niacin from tryptophan (an amino acid) but cats must have it provided in their diet.

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O


Oatmeal
Whole grain that is an excellent source of slow burning carbohydrates for all day energy and fiber for proper digestion.
Oranges
Oranges are a natural source of vitamin C.

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P


Papaya
A tropical fruit that is rich in vitamin A and C while also being low in calories.
Parsley
A natural herb. Flavor enhancer.
Pea Protein
Peas are highly nutritious legumes that are made up of protein, starch and fiber in addition to vitamins and minerals. A special processing technique is used to separate the protein from the starch and fiber to create a digestible, low ash protein source with the added benefit of phytonutrients.
Peas
A tiny legume that acts as a virtual powerhouse of nutrition. Peas are legumes and are whole food sources of protein and carbohydrates. They are rich in potassium, vitamin A and vitamin C.
Potassium Chloride
Potassium salt of hydrochloric acid and is required for body fluid maintenance, nerve conduction (including normal heart rhythm), and certain metabollic processes. Potassium is the main electrolyte in intracellular fluid.
Potassium Iodide
Potassium salt that is required for body fluid maintenance, nerve conduction (including normal heart rhythm) and certain metabolic processes. Potassium is the main electrolyte in intracellular fluid.
Potato protein
The protein portion of potatoes. Excellent back-up source of protein in high-protein recipes to help keep the ash low.
Powdered cellulose
A natural plant fiber source. This ingredient is highly refined, a white powder that provides insoluble fiber to the diet. The purpose of insoluble fiber is to lower calories or help control hairballs in cats.
Pumpkin
This squash gets its orange color from naturally occurring beta-carotene, a powerful antioxidant. It is also rich in vitamin C, potassium and fiber. It is most well-known for its fiber content, which helps support healthy digestion.
Pyridoxine Hydrochloride
Vitamin B6. Water-soluble. Necessary for blood cell formation and nervous system function.

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Q


Quinoa
Quinoa is a grain that contains high levels of fiber and protein. It is rich in minerals and B vitamins, nutrients important for vital functions within your pet’s body.

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R


Riboflavin
Vitamin B2. Water-soluble. Antioxidant necessary for nervous system function, utilization of energy, healthy skin and coat, and tissue repair.
Rice (Brewers)
Highly digestible carbohydrate made up from broken fragments of rice.
Rice bran
The inner (bran) portion of rice. Source of fat and fiber.
Rice Flour
The inner grain, free from the outer hull, ground to a flour consistency. It is a very highly digestible source of carbohydrates.
Rosemary Extract
Natural antioxidant added to help preserve the shelf life of the food.

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S


Salt
Source of sodium and chloride. Used in formulas that are labeled for growing animals or reproducing animals. Sodium and chloride are required in higher levels by these life stages.
Sodium Bisulfate
An excellent urinary acidifier, this ingredient helps promote a urine pH of 6.1 - 6.4 in our adult cat formulas.
Sodium Selenite
Form of selenium, an essential trace mineral necessary for normal immune function and reproduction.

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T


Taurine
Amino acid essential for cats that maintains healthy eyes and heart. Considered to be conditionally essential for dogs (meaning certain dogs require it in their diet under certain conditions - particularly true when the dog is eating a lamb formula that has low protein content).
Thiamine mononitrate
Vitamin B1. Required for protein and carbohydrate metabolism, as well as to maintain normal nervous system function.
Tocopherols
Natural preservative made of compounds of Vitamin E. Used to prevent rancidity in the chicken fat and the overall formula.
Tomatoes
A natural source of vitamin C and lycopene, important antioxidants.

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V


Vitamin A Supplement
Active source of vitamin A, required by cats. Dogs can convert inactive vitamin A (beta-carotene) to active vitamin A. Necessary for reproduction, vision, normal skeletal and tooth development, immunity, and tissue integrity.
Vitamin B12 Supplement
The only B vitamin that can be stored by the body. Necessary for formation of red blood cells and normal nervous system function.
Vitamin D Supplement
Regulates calcium and phosphorus balance and bone calcification.
Vitamin E Supplement
Helps protect cell membranes, regulates intracellular respiration and immune function.

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W


White Rice
Inner grain of rice (outer bran is removed). Highly digestible carbohydrate ingredient.
Whitefish
Whitefish is a category of ocean fish. These fish all have white meat. Fish is an excellent source of protein as well as natural Omega-3 fatty acids. It is a good protein source for dogs that have sensitivities to other more traditional pet food protein sources.
Whole Grain Brown Rice
The whole grain of unprocessed rice ground to a fine flour consistency. Benefits include fiber, carbohydrates, protein, and vitamin B.

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Y


Yucca Schidigera Extract
Natural plant extract that has been proven to reduce stool odor.

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Z


Zinc Proteinate
Chelated form of zinc. Zinc is necessary for the formation of proteins in the body, normal immune system function, skin and wound healing, growth and reproduction. Chelated minerals are attached to amino acids for better absorption from the digestive tract.
Zinc Sulfate
Non-chelated form of zinc. Zinc is necessary for the formation of proteins in the body, normal immune system function, skin and wound healing, growth and reproduction. There is a genetically influenced abnormality in zinc absorption and metabolism in some breeds (Malamutes and Siberian Huskies) which may result in an increased dietary requirement for zinc.

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