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Rating Popular Dog Food Brands

Hey guys welcome back to my blog. Today, I’m going to rate dry dog kibble. I took a few popular common brands that you see a lot and I’m going to be comparing all of those and talking about them seeing how good or bad they are. Before we get started I do want to give a quick shout out to affordable testing. You probably want to find out what is best for your dog and what you should be feeding them but it doesn’t matter what you feed them or how much money you spend on their food if they are allergic to the food that you are giving them.

Unfortunately dogs cannot tell us which foods make their tummy hurt but affordable testing offers a very easy solution. You can get your dog’s hair tested to find out what types of foods they are intolerant to. It is so amazing and it works. This test is available for humans, dogs, cats, and horses. Okay, let’s talk about dog food. First off, I do want to say that raw food is the best thing that you can give your dog. Evenly cooked meals and fresh food are the best thing to offer almost any animal and so you aren’t going to get anything as good using dried dog kibble.

Dehydrated dog food is also really great and so Cable is not great. However, there are some that are worse than others and that’s mainly what we’re going to be looking at. For whatever reason, people decide to feed their dog’s kibble and so today that’s what we’re going to focus on in this blog and we’re going to be looking at 10 different brands and comparing those brands such as looking at the protein level; the ingredients; and the cost of the dog food. Now I am using the chewy app to look at all of the different brands as far as the price goes and the ingredients so I will let you know what the price of the dog food is on the Chewy app versus what it is in regular store price.

I’m pulling up a few popular brands to look at today and I’m going to be giving them a 1 through 5 star rating with 5 being the best and with 1 being not so grea.t So first off, to start, we will be looking at Blue Buffalo and we are looking at Blue Buffalo wilderness chicken recipe grain free dry dog food and this is a 24 pound of bag. It costs about $56 regular and on Chewy its $53 so let’s say that the average between that would actually be $2.28 a pound. This is the most expensive brand we are going to be looking at today so let’s see how it does for being so expensive. Now, the first thing that’s concerning to me just by looking at this brand is the fact that they are advertising as being grain free dog food. Now I’ve said before that not every dog is allergic to grains and it’s very rare that a dog will be allergic to all types of grains so the best thing to do like I said is to actually get your dog tested. It’s not going to help your dog if you take all the grains out of their diet and they’re allergic to something like chicken so that’s why you need to get your dog tested and I recommend doing that over.

You know working with vets, I’ve spent lots of money at vets offices for my dog’s allergies and got no results and it’s because when you’re doing that it’s just a guess and so yeah, I don’t really like seeing grain free dog foods right away because then, first of all most dogs don’t need that and second of all, there’s usually something hiding in there so we’re going to look at that. And another thing else, I did want to mention is that research has found that the stomach contents of wolves actually do contain plant matter so while it was believed that they only ate meat, that’s not entirely true. They do also eat other plant material and also the gut and gizzards of the animals that they are eating is also going to contain plant matter that they do ingest so let’s look at the ingredients of Blue Buffalo and see what they are. Okay, so it has depo chicken, chicken meal peas, pea protein, tapioca starch, menhaden, fish meal, source of omega-3 fatty acids, dried tomato, chicken, fat flax seeds, pea starch, natural flavors, dried egg protein, dehydrated alfalfa meal, potatoes, Puri root, pea fiber, alfalfa nutrient concentrate, sweet potatoes, and carrots. Yeah, and that’s about it okay and so there we go. There it is and their filler is not green. It’s actually alfalfa and there’s a lot of alfalfa in this food because as we can see from a list of ingredients, it’s actually split up into two different groups and so the reason they do that is so that it comes out later in the list of ingredients instead of close to the top or right at the top. Now, alfalfa is a food that is high in protein and has become the new cheap filler for dog food. Essentially it’s a new corn and I love something that’s used mainly for farm animals.

However, it is actually a better option to feed most animals grass than alfalfa farm animals and stuff like that because horses and rabbits have a harder time digesting alfalfa so based on what we know from animals and what we know from nutrition it doesn’t make any sense to be putting alfalfa in a dog’s food. Of course, like most things like this, the research behind it is lacking but we do know that dogs need to get their protein source from animal products and not from grains and things like that. So, why would you want alfalfa in your dog’s food? But there’s a few things that can save them, deep bone chickens. That’s really good and that should be mostly meat. Chicken meal isn’t as bad as chicken by-product and then they do use fish meal and it has a source of omega-3 so that’s good. Peas are broken down into several groups but that’s going to be pretty much with every dog food brand. It has eggs, chicken fat for flavor, and the rest of the ingredients really aren’t too bad and the protein was 34% so I think we can say a lot of animal protein is used for that. However, 34% is actually overkill and you don’t really want to be feeding your dogs that much protein. For large breed puppies that are really active, 30% to 34% is okay but this isn’t really ideal for just a typical adult dog so for the most part the ingredients are good. 34% protein but for $2.28 a pound this food is extremely overpriced especially considering that they do have alfalfa as a filler so I think overall Blue Buffalo isn’t terrible but there’s just certain things about it that make it not very good or very suitable for anybody. So, I think for Blue Buffalo we’re going to end up giving them 3 stars out of 5 and we’re going to be comparing other brands of high quality food so that it’ll be a little bit easier to understand why this got kind of a low rating.

Alright, next we’re going to be looking at Pedigree and this is Pedigree adult complete nutrition roasted chicken rice and vegetable flavor dry dog food that is 33 pounds for $18.10 and that makes it about 55 cents a pound so let’s not get our hopes up. So, the ingredients include ground whole grain, corn meat, and bone meal, corn gluten meal, animal fat source for omega-6 fatty acids, and really quick both omega-6 and 3 are good but you want to eat Omega threes. Usually for Americans, our diets are way too high in omega-6, which is not something very easy to get so not impressive to put on your list of ingredients a soy meal natural flavour chicken by-product meal dry plain beet pulp ground whole grain wheat. Alright, so this is bad. This is mainly corn and corn is a very cheap filler for dog food. It’s just super easy to make lots of products with it and so we’re not going to get into the debate here of corn being bad and why it’s bad for dogs but you can very easily Google anything like this. Corn is not something that is good for dogs to be eating and this food is mainly corn. First ingredient really and usually they’ll try to hide it.

A little bit of corn basically just doesn’t have any nutritional value for the dogs and what’s really horrifying is that there’s still a lot of bits that will tell you that this type of dog food is perfectly fine but that’s a whole different can of worms for another day so basically there’s not really any animal protein in this food. By looking at the list of ingredient, we can tell that there’s almost none. Basically, what they’re doing here is just using enough animal product to have the flavor of chicken. So roasted chicken is only a flavour. There isn’t any actual roasted chicken in the food rice. Well it’s on there near the bottom and for vegetables, there just isn’t any vegetables in this list of ingredients unless you want count beetroot. Geez, so well they advertise vegetables and chickens and stuff that there’s hardly any of that. There’s definitely no vegetables. Basically, more accurately, this food should be called complete corn flavored with the garbage of the slaughterhouse and it’s 21% protein not that, that really matters at this point so you probably know by now this food is definitely going to get a one-star rating and really that’s only because one star is the lowest we’re going with here.

Uhm basically, they just got a participation trophy. Moving on, next we are going to be talking about Royal Canin now through full disclosure I very very much dislike Royal Canin for a couple of reasons. For example, they’re ridiculous marketing tactics of having a bag of dog food for each breed like that even matters. It’s all the same garbage being fed to boxers, shih tzus, and Yorkies. It’s the same stuff but they advertise it that way. Even worse is that this company makes dog food for certain types of health conditions for dogs that are prone to getting these certain types of problems so example they’ll make food that is to prevent kidney stones. However, the food that they have the ingredients going into this food is actually what is causing kidney stones and the real mind-blower here is that veterinarians are selling these types of food in their clinics. But, your holistic veterinarians that are doing new research and incorporating like raw diets and stuff like that they’re saying that high carbohydrate diets like this isn’t what is actually causing all the health problems in dogs but that’s a little bit of disclosure as to why I don’t like Royal Canin but let’s look at it fairly and go over everything about it.

Alright, so for this article, we’re going to be looking at Royal Canin size health nutrition medium adult dry dog food. This is a thirty pound bag and it is $60 at regular price and $50 on chewie so let’s say its $55 so $1.80 for a pound. Keep that in mind though that if you did buy this food at regular price it would be $2 a pound. Let’s look at the ingredients. You have brewers rice chicken by-product meal, oak growth, sweet corn, gluten meal, chicken fat, natural flavour, dry clean beet pulp, and fish oil. Alright, that’s it. There’s really not a lot of stuff in here. Okay, where to start? So, let’s start with the animal protein. By-product meal is not good not like chicken meal, which is not so bad. By-product chicken meal is not good at all. What’s even worse is that some by-product meal is basically everything left over in the slaughterhouse and then it is processed a lot before even being put into dog food to be processed more.

Chicken fat is just used to flavor the food so that it tastes like chicken so overall there’s very little animal protein. There’s a lot of greens, corn, rice oats, wheat corn, and gluten meal. This is corn that was not fit for human consumption and it comes to 23% protein so Pedigree was 55 cents a pound and this is a dollar eighty four per pound so it’s three times your money. A little bit more than that but I’m not really seeing the difference here in fact a pedigree had more animal protein because it did have meat and bone meal whereas Royal Canin doesn’t have soy leg. Wow, like there’s really not much of a difference here so as you can imagine we’re going to give Royal Canin a one-star review and that is because for the price that you are paying for this, you are not getting your money’s worth. It is ridiculously overpriced.

Now, next we will be looking at Taste of the Wild. So, this next one should be a little bit better. This is Taste of the Wild pine forest grain free dry dog food and it is a 28-pound bag for $49 making it a $1.75 per pound so let’s see how this grain free dog food compares of venison, lamb meal, garbanzo beans, peas, lentils, pea protein, pea flour, egg product, canola oil, fava beans, tomato, natural flavors, ocean fish meal, Selman oil, tomatoes, blueberries, Ram, raspberries, and yucca. Okay, so actually overall really not too bad. There are several animal proteins so venison lamb meal, egg product, fish meal, and it also has things like raspberries and yucca. There is no grain so instead they use things like beans, peas, and lentils no alfalfa so that’s really good and it’s 28% protein, which is the perfect amount. Now, compared to Blue Buffalo that claims to be grain-free for $2.28 a pound. This food is better overall and a better price. Another really important thing to note here is that it is actually less than Royal Canin, which did turn out to be complete garbage so I’m actually going to give this food 5 stars overall for the quality and the price.

Alright, next we’re going to be looking at Purina. So, Purina does make a lot of different types of dog food. What we’ll be looking at is Purina one smart blend chicken and rice adult. It is a 31-pound bag for $33.81 making it about a $1.09 per pound. So, let’s see what it has, chicken, rice flour, corn, gluten meal, whole grain corn, chicken by-product meal, whole grain, wheat, soybean, beef fat, liver flavour, dried carrots, dried peas, and that’s it basically. Now, the protein is already better than the one star brands that we’ve recently looked at. Chicken and chicken by-product still has a lot of corn, wheat, and soy but at least it does have carrots too and a protein of 26% so it’s not too good but it’s also not too terrible so I think overall we’re going to grant them two stars just because also for about 60 cents more you do get a lot better food.

Next food on the list is Nutro. Now, this is a brand that I personally use. Nutro is what I fed my Corgi puppies when they were transitioning from you know drinking milk to eating solid food before they went to their new homes and so not all of these dogs were going to be fed a rot diet so I thought that Nutro was actually a pretty good food to start them out with and you’ll be able to see here a list of ingredients and everything. It’s a really good dog food so for this post we’re going to be looking at Nutro wholesome essential large breed adult farm raised chicken brown rice and sweet potato recipe. These things are long and this is a 30-pound bag. It is $50 regular and $50 on Chewy so let’s say it’s 50 150 which would make it a $1.72 per pound. Now, it’s really important to see that the material that sets this apart from other brands is that it is made with GMO-free ingredients. So, let’s look at those ingredients, chicken meal, cold brown rice, brewers rice, split peas, whole grain, sorghum chicken, fat rice bran, dried sweet potatoes, lamb meal, dry plain beef, and pulp flax seeds, so the animal protein is good.

You have chicken meal and lamb meal already, which is a big deal with the food is when they have a protein source that is not a meal. It also has rice and sweet potatoes as well as fruits and vegetables, beet pulp, peas, apples, blueberries, and carrots. So, overall the ingredients are pretty good. It does have 21% protein, which is okay but a little bit low comparing to other brands but I think that the non-GMO ingredients really does save it here and like I said, you don’t need a super high protein value for an adult dog. Now, for all of this I would actually give them 4.5 stars considering a little bit of a lower protein but considering the price and that it was actually a little bit cheaper than Taste of the Wild while being made with non-GMO ingredients. I think that’s something really important to look at so something like that being organic non-GMO might not matter to a lot of people but I think it’s something that we still need to consider so for this brand I am actually going to give them five stars.

Next, we’re going to be looking at Science Diet and this is another one of my favorite brands and by that I mean favorite brands to hate on and just the brand name alone makes people think that they’re buying the best thing for their dog. That’s super frustrating to me. It’s just out of that I would give them one star but let’s be fair and go over everything like all the other brands even though I can’t stand Science Type so we’re going to be looking at Hill Science Diet adult large breed ryedawg food. It is a thirty five pound bag for $56 regular price or $48 on Chewy so let’s say that it’s $52, which would make it $1.48 a pound and just so that you can compare the price since there’s a little bit of a difference if you bought it like it’s somewhere at Petsmart. It would be a $1.60 a pound so this price is actually up there close to Nutro and Taste of the Wild and Royal Canin. However, we did see that those three brands turned out to be very different when comparing them so let’s see what we have here.

All right, so this has chicken whole grain wheat cracked pearl barley whole grain sorghum whole grain, corn, gluten, meal chicken, meal pork, fat chicken, liver flavour, dried beet, pulp, and then at the bottom of the list after all of the stuffies process the food there is apple roughly carrots cranberries and green peas so this is a step up from Royal Canin because it does actually have chicken but it does have a long list of grains which include corn at the top wheat barley it has chicken meal which is better than by-product meal and while it does have fruits and vegetables they are so far down on the list of ingredients that it’s like really how much could there actually be in this food so I don’t know if that really counts protein is 21% which is efficient but like we said a little bit lower and the ingredients do not help at all so based off the price this food is just a little too expensive for all of the grains it has however it does have a decent amount of animal proteins better than some of the other ones that we are seeing with a lot of grains so for your science diet I am going to give them to the stars next we’re going to be looking at Rachael Ray this is a brand that I’ve personally used in the past actually I really like Rachael Ray’s food.

However, it does need to be said that rachael ray food varies greatly there are some bags that are really great there’s some that are just awful so the quality can be really bad personally my favorite is just six that’s the one that I’ve used in the past but yeah there’s a lot of difference in the food for the sake of this post we’re going to be looking at Rachael Ray nutrish Peak grain free natural open range recipe with beef venison and lamb dry dog food so this is a 23 pound bag for $47.49 regular price and 44 dollars and ninety three cents I’m chewy so let’s say roughly that it’s forty six dollars and fifty cents which would make it two dollars and two cents a pound so this food is expensive the ingredients are beef chicken meal dried peas whole dried potatoes pea flour pea protein chicken fat lamb meal roll flax seeds pork gelatin venison lamp men Hamden fish meal and dry plain beet pulp natural flavors sweet potatoes cranberries now what’s good as does have really good animal proteins such as beef lamb venison which are not meals so that’s really good as well as chicken meal a meal and fish meal with chicken fat and pork gelatin for flavor so a lot of animal product in that and the bellies are actually pretty decent so for the food being labelled grain free there is no alfalfa and it’s peas potatoes beet pulp sweet potatoes and cranberry and the protein is 30% so while the food is expensive you are actually getting a pretty good quality of all the Browns we looked at this actually does have the best protein sources so I have that I would actually give them five stars

However we need to consider that 30% protein which is a little too high for most adult dogs and so that’s this would be really good food for like a large breed puppy protein is perfect but for an adult thought it’s a little high so I think because of that I’m going to give them 4.5 stars for this dog food now let’s look at another very popular brand that’s been around forever I’m Stock food this is AIIMS proactive health adult mini chunks which are I dog food and it is a 30 pound bag regular price is $35 and it is 3194 on chewy so let’s say it’s um 33 50 which would make it about a dollar 12 per pound okay so it has chicken ground whole grain corn ground whole grain sorghum chicken by-product meal dried be pulled natural flavors chicken fat dried ate product not great but it’s also not the worst it does have the chicken and chicken by-product meal egg product for the protein there is beet pulp peas and spinach and I mean a there’s been some brands that have been advertising vegetables on the label of their food and they don’t have any so that’s already kind of a step up but let’s have corn at least not corn by-product meal but it does still have corn with 25% protein actually feel like for the price you are getting what you are paying for its cheap food so it’s not that great but you’re also not getting like complete garbage it’s birthing Royal Canin and science day while having a better proteins than Royal Canin and it does have less great than science diet while having more protein percentage than both so based off of all that I’m actually going to give it three stars and this came out the same as Blue Buffalo.

But, remember how overpriced Blue Buffalo was so for this food it’s not that bad for what you’re paying for I guess and the last food that we’re going to be looking at today is crave so for this post we’re going to be looking at crepe with protein from lamb and venison adult grain-free to ride dog food it is 22 pound bag for $45 regular and 42 dollars and 66 cents on chewy so let’s say 43 dollars and 80 cents on average that makes it about a dollar ninety-nine pound so it’s almost the same price as Rachael Ray’s food that we just looked at peak so let’s see how it compares all right so this has deep boned lamb chicken meals chickpeas split peas lamb meal potato protein chicken fat dry potatoes dehydrated alfalfa meal venison meal and flex seeds so already we can see that it does not have the amount of animal product that peak did debone lamb meal is good but then we go to chicken meal a meal and venison meal and then look at that they are advertising this grain free but they do have alfalfa meal not as much alfalfa as Blue Buffalo did though but the ingredients just do not compare to peak especially considering the price that it does have 34% protein that’s overkill dogs get health problems and joint issues and things like that from having a diet that’s too high in protein so that’s why I’ve been mentioning that throughout this post that’s why you want to stay away from foods like this that are just overkill for an average adult dog now this is a hard one to rate because the ingredients are good but not for the price and the protein is too much then there’s a secret filler alfalfa which is the new corn I think overall I’m going to give it the same rating as Blue Buffalo because it’s overpriced but it have good animal protein products so three stars for crave now I know this was kind of a long post packed with a lot of information.

So let’s really quickly go over the ten different brands that we looked at and what we gave them so Blue Buffalo was two dollars and 28 cents per pound with a three star rating pedigree was 55 cents per pound with a 1 star rating Royal Canin was one dollar and 84 cents per pound with a 1 star rating taste of the wild was one dollar and seventy five cents per pound with a five star rating Purina was one dollar and nine cents per pound with a two star rating neutral was one dollar and 72 cents per pound with a five star rating science diet was one dollar and 48 cents per pound with a two star rating Rachel Ray was two dollars and two cents per pound with a 4.5 star rating i’m z’ was one dollar and twelve cents per pound with a three star rating and crave at one dollar and 99 cents per pound was a three star rating i hope this puts in perspective on try dog kibble for you since i see a lot of people equating the price to the quality of food you’re kidding which as we can see from looking at this breath is not the case it’s kind of all over the place actually when it comes to price versus quality and I hope this taught you something about the ingredients found in dog food and I can just imagine everybody running off to go look at their bag of dog food right now so please write down below in the comments which ingredients you are surprised to find in your dog’s kibble and whether or not you’re going to be switching are you satisfied with what you are feeding them and what you’re paying for also please let me know in the comments if after watching this post you felt more confident about what you’re feeding your dog or if you immediately wanted to run out and throw everything away also if you do decide to switch to a better dog food I just want to remind everybody that switching to a healthier type of food can actually make your dog’s sick and this is a totally normal process I’ve seen a lot of people though immediately go back to feeding them that really cheap bad just because they got diarrhea when switched over to a healthier option so I can make a whole post about that if you’re interested in it because that’s it’s not a reason to stop feeding good food and go back to bad food anyways.


Audrey R. Allen