In nutrition, nutrients are split into the categories of 'Essential' and 'Beneficial.'
'Essential' is nutrients that are needed by the body just to literally stay alive, and 'Beneficial' is nutrients which you can still live without, but if deficient in these long-term then health issues are likely, so 'Beneficial' should not be misunderstood to mean 'optional.'
A good example here is Iodine, which is classed as a 'Beneficial' nutrient, as you won't actually die if you don't have it, but it is essential for good thyroid function.
The thyroid produces hormones whose job it is to regulate the body's metabolic rate, growth and development, it also plays a role in controlling heart, muscle, and digestive function,' brain development and bone maintenance, so a very important organ in the body. Unless some kind of supplementation, or a small amount of the recommended types of vegetable matter is fed within the diet (usually including seaweed which is a main source of Iodine), it is highly questionable whether a dog fed only Balanced minces or only Complementary minces will be able to have enough Iodine to fulfill the body's needs for optimum health.
Balanced MincesBalanced Minces
Often the most affordably priced for those who have large or multiple dogs, with the widest variety of proteins, Balanced minces contain meat bone and offal so, when a good mix of at least 5 different meat types is fed in rotation, they will provide the Essential nutrients needed to sustain life.
These are sometimes in an 80/10/10 ratio, but some will sometimes contain more bone, which is absolutely fine, as more is needed when softer bones are used.
We recommend balanced minces have a small amount of suitable fruit/veg/herbs (like Smartbarf) and extra oily fish (like sprats) or a suitable oil to bump up omega fatty acids be added to the diet to make it 'Complete.' This is quite easy and just requires a small amount of extra preparation time.
Occasional meaty bones are also a great addition for their teeth-cleaning and calming effects.
Complete MincesComplete Minces
Complete minces contain all the Essential and Beneficial nutrients your dog needs for optimum health, so with these minces you can literally just defrost and serve. This is sometimes a more costly option for larger/mutiple dogs as more work and expense goes into the preparation by the manufacturer, but some are very well priced.
Giving occasional meaty bones is still a valuable extra for their teeth-cleaning properties and calming effects, and dogs love them!
Complimentary MincesComplimentary Minces
Complimentary minces are usually totally boneless and often will not contain any organ meat and will be used simply for dogs who find the amount of bone in balanced and complete minces a bit too much and so have some boneless mince added to dilute the bone content down to what they can cope with.
We do not recommend complimentary minces be fed on their own to your pets as they will be severely lacking in many nutrients needed for good health.