Black Hawk Grain Free

Review Details
Website: Black Hawk
Country of origin: Australia
Available from: Pet Circle My Pet Warehouse :PETStock:
Black Hawk Grain Free

Black Hawk Grain Free

20/10/2016 Revised review due to formula change

Black Hawk used to have a very loyal following due to being an Australian company, but are now owned by Masterpet (CBOS Group) in New Zealand which raised a lot of speculation. Black Hawk maintained the food was still 100% Australian made and the formula wouldn’t change, so it’s interesting to see it now has. Comparing old versus new it’s actually a lot different, so let’s take a look…

We’ll focus on the Australian Hormone Free Chicken recipe. The other three recipes are very similar in composition and analysis.

As with the previous recipe we find Chicken Meal as the main ingredient, which is great to see. They state the food is 52% meat proteins but I’m not entirely sure what that means. 52% of the protein in the food comes from chicken? 52% of the ingredients are chicken (before or after cooking)? It’s not very clear to me…

The next ingredient is peas, which is an ingredient we see often these days in grain free foods. They’re very high in protein and a cheaper inclusion than meat proteins. I wouldn’t say they’re a bad ingredient, but it masks the amount of meat proteins in the food.

Tapioca is prominent as the 3rd ingredient. All kibble’s need a starchy ingredient to bind it together, and tapioca has become a popular choice. It’s gluten-free and not a common allergen which means not many dogs will have an issue eating it, but on the other hand it contains little nutritional merit and is very high on the glycemic index. The fifth ingredient is potato which is also high GI. If your dog has diabetes then it’s worth looking for a food with sweet potatoes or chickpeas instead. Interestingly the previous formula was based on sweet potato, so this is quite a change.

In 4th we have Chicken Fat, an essential ingredient providing omega 6 fatty acids. Animal fats offer an excellent source of energy. A range of oils have been added as a further source of omega fats for overall health, skin and coat. We also find a range of trace fruits, vegetables, and herbs which are nice inclusions.

I previously rated this food 5 stars based on ingredients and analysis, but consumer feedback hinted at digestive issues with a number of dogs. I see this as a new formula, and I feel it sits more in the 4 star category. It’s still a very good food and worthy of adding to a rotation. Recommended.

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Good points…

A dense meat protein ingredient in the number one spot.

Bad points…

Peas will inflate the protein, tapioca is prominent as well as potato as high GI ingredients.

Guaranteed Analysis

* Carbohydrates aren’t listed on pet food labels. This value is calculated based on levels of protein, fat, moisture, and ash. Estimated values for moisture and ash have been used where these values haven’t been given (moisture of 10%, and ash of 8%).


Chicken Meal, Peas, Tapioca, Chicken Fat (naturally preserved with Rosemary Extract, Mixed Tocopherols and Citric Acid), Potato, Sweet Potato, Chicken Gravy, Sugar Beet Pulp, Essential Vitamins and Minerals (see tables), Salmon Oil, Sunflower Oil, Chicory Root, Di-Calcium Phosphate, Alfalfa, Salt, Apple, Brewers Yeast, Pumpkin Seeds, Natural Antioxidants, Coconut Oil, Yoghurt Powder, Emu Oil, Blueberries, Cranberries, Dandelion Tea, Parsley, Peppermint Tea, Rosemary Extract, Chondroitin, Glucosamine, Carrots, Yucca Schidigera, Spinach, Kelp, Tomato, Beta Carotene.

Ingredients prior to mid-2016:

Chicken Meal, Chicken, Sweet Potato, Chicken Fat (Preserved with Mixed Tocopherols, source of Vitamin E, Citric Acid, Rosemary Extract), Field Peas, Tapioca Starch, Natural Flavour, Whole Linseed, Vegetable Oil, Egg Powder, Potassium Chloride, Choline Chloride, Kelp Meal, Yucca Schidigera Extract, Tomato Pomice, Emu Oil, Carrots, Blueberries, Dandelion, Peppermint, Dried Rosemary, Ferrous Sulphate, Calcium Pantothenate, Vitamin E Supplement, Riboflavin Supplement, Niacin, Copper Sulphate, Manganese Oxide, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Calcium Iodate, Thiamine Mononitrate, Vitamin A Supplement, Folic Acid, Sodium Selenite, Vitamin D3 Supplement, Vitamin B12 Supplement.