This article contains affiliate links to products. Discover may receive a commission for purchases made through these links.
Our team went out into the field looking for the best canine nutrition products in the world. Our winner for this year is Pupper, which topped our charts in terms of ingredient quality as well as science backed claims.
Man’s best friend has been around for thousands of years. Dogs are actually descendants of the grey wolf, being domesticated over thousands of years into hundreds of different breeds of dog. Dogs have their place in human history as hunting companions, symbols of royalty, and more. Now, we call them best friend, and they’re truly some of our most loyal companions. Such loyalty earns at least a good diet as thanks, but it’s sometimes difficult to find dog food that measures up to our love for our furry friends.
Dog foods have come a long way from where they first started, and now, you can find high-quality foods for great prices across the country. Many dog food brands offer 100% fresh meats, high-quality grains, and more in their food, and it’s important to pay attention to ingredients. There’s a misconception that dogs are 100% obligate carnivores, and this has been largely disproven. What does this mean? Your dog needs more than just meat in their diet.
We’ve scoured the web and narrowed down the plethora of brands out there to a mere 11. These brands showcase some of the best prices, ingredients, and overall service in the industry.
Dog Food Standards
Unfortunately, not all dog food brands follow strict quality standards. One of the most common (and awful) ingredients you’ll find in modern dog and cat food is called “meat meal” or “meat protein.” Essentially, once an animal is slaughtered for meat, the “leftover” meaty parts that aren’t fit for humans are cooked until the fat melts away. It’s equally as bad for dogs to eat this meat product, and you just don’t know what’s actually in it!
What We Look For
The brands that made our list adhere to very strict quality standards, which makes them the best. We’re looking for high-quality, wholesome, natural ingredients sourced from sustainable farms and ranches. We also looked for fresh meats as the main ingredient, whole grains, and a good balance of vitamins and minerals. Of course, as we’re talking about the brand itself, and not a specific product, we looked at the brands’ reputations for service and quality as well.
The Best Dog Food Brands
Each of these brands offers high-quality, potent dog food at a good price. Most of them also offer free online shipping either directly from the website or via Amazon or Chewy.com. Let’s jump in!
When it comes to dog food, Pupper makes the number one spot on our list for a few reasons. To start, the company uses only high-quality, wholesome, natural ingredients in both of its dog food recipes. The chicken and beef blends are packed with the best freeze-dried ingredients to lock in nutrients and give your dog the best food money can buy. Moreover, the brand takes the quality of its products very seriously, adhering to strict personal standards so that every bag of premium dog food is top-notch.
Pupper’s great products are only available online. The exclusivity helps keep prices low and ensures the quality is never lacking. Pupper’s has served thousands of happy customers already, and with a growing audience, the brand is really shaking up the industry with its amazing dog food. Try the beef blend today and you won’t want anything else!
Ingredients: Reduce the “eco pawprint” with Chippin’s whole, all-natural ingredients. Featuring omega-3 rich USA wild caught silver carp as the #1 ingredient, combined with gut healthy foods and dog favorites like pumpkin, oats, flaxseed, and spinach. This pawsome food is anti-allergen & oven-baked. Perfect for dogs with allergies or sensitive stomachs.
Price/Where To Buy: Score this healthy, eco-conscious food at chippinpet.com. There, you can find a 3.5 lb. bag for just $32.99 (+ save 10% when you subscribe). You’ll also find all of Chippin’s drool-worthy dog jerky & oven-baked treats packed with novel proteins like cricket and spirulina.
The Difference: Crafted with a highly nutritious but overpopulated fish in USA waterways, feeding your dog Chippin helps to restore biodiversity and protect the Great Lakes. This all-natural recipe is great for discerning dogs, sensitive tummies, and eco champs that want to reduce their impact on the environment.
3. American Journey
American Journey is one of the youngest brands on our list, coming to the dog food stage in 2017 with a line of natural, great-tasting dog food products for reasonable prices. The brand has managed to work its way into major retail stores and websites despite its shorter lifespan, and this is likely due to the incredible quality the food offers. American Journey uses deboned meat as the first ingredient in all of its products, offering turkey, chicken, salmon, beef, and other options.
The brand’s prices are right in the average range as well, making their food an excellent value. Not many brands in the same price range actually use deboned meat as their number one ingredient, so it’s nice to see a newer player in the industry making strides in terms of quality and consistency. You can buy American Journey dog food in stores like Petco and on sites like Chewy.com and Amazon. The brand doesn’t have its own site.
Merrick is one of the oldest brands on our list, started over 30 years ago in Texas with a mind for quality in the realm of pet food and supplies. Every ingredient is tested for quality, and Merrick maintains the mantra of only putting what they’d feed their own pets into their pet food. This attitude is a big part of why Merrick has lasted so long, and customers all over the country trust Merrick to keep their dogs happy, healthy, and bringing them tasty foods. Merrick’s 5-star promise: Real whole foods, higher quality ingredients, health you can see, crafted in the Hereford kitchen, and Merrick gives back.
You can find Merrick’s long line of pet products and delicious, affordable foods in major retail stores like Pet Supplies Plus, PetCo, and Wal-Mart. You can also find them online at the Merrick website, Chew.com, and some products on Amazon.
5. Taste of the Wild
Taste of the Wild takes a different approach to dog food, focusing more on foods that your dog’s ancestors may have eaten. Since dogs are descended from gray wolves, they had an interesting diet once—likely consisting of fresh meats from hunting, and any foods their prey may have consumed. Wolves have also been known to forage for plant-based foods during times of scarcity. Taste of the Wild means to capture that traditional diet to provide your dog with optimal nutrition.
This family-owned brand makes all of its products right here in the USA, with an incredible commitment to quality. These foods are always produced with pets in mind, so they’re designed to be healthy and tasty. But don’t worry, they didn’t forget about us humans—the food is also affordable. You can buy it at PetCo, Amazon, Chewy.com, and Tractor Supply Co.
6. Diamond Naturals
Diamond Naturals is a family-owned company, which helps keep things less “corporate” and more focused on the quality, integrity, and consistency of its long line of pet-friendly products. Diamond Naturals produces high-quality dog food made from only natural ingredients, with a passion. We’d like to think that makes one heck of a difference in the overall quality of the brand’s food. The brand adheres to a strict code of nutritional integrity, ensuring that every ingredient offers nutritional value to your dog. How many brands can say that?
Diamond Naturals offers dog foods for every breed, size, and age. You can find the brand’s line of pet products online at diamondpet.com, PetCo, Chewy.com, PetFlow, and Amazon. This is a brand that’s been trusted by pet owners since 1970, and if it doesn’t pass the Diamond test, it isn’t worth buying!
7. I and Love and You
I and Love and You is a brand that understands that special bond between you and your pet and brings the best dog food to match that undying companionship. Whether you’re a large or small breed owner, rescue or purebred, Lab or retriever, you’re welcome at I and Love and You. The brand makes an extensive line of pet products, and their incredible dog food is something you have to try to believe. Dogs love it for its great taste, and humans will love it for its low price, incredible health benefits, and commitment to quality.
The brand started as a small pet store in Boulder, Colorado, and has since become one of the most trusted brands when it comes to dog food (and other pet products). You can find these products on the brand’s website, Chewy.com, and other online retailers.
This is one of the best brands out there, with an unyielding commitment to quality that surpasses lesser suitors. PetKind’s food is unique in that it uses something called green tripe, which is the nutrient-rich lining of prey animals’ stomachs (like bison and deer). This potent, albeit smelly ingredient is behind PetKind’s unique and potent dog food line. This natural part of your dog’s ancestral diet contains potent nutrients that can improve your dog’s overall look and health, and it really works!
Customers love how happy and healthy their dogs look and feel while eating PetKind’s foods, and you won’t find this potent ingredient in most other brands. PetKind’s dog food is available both online at petkind.com and Chewy and in certain pet stores. Check your local store to see if this potent, all-natural option is in stock! You’ll be satisfied with the price, quality, and how much your doggo loves it.
9. Wellness Pet Foods
Wellness is a brand that’s committed to the health and happiness of the pets it serves, and that’s incredibly apparent in the brand’s Core series of pet foods. These foods are high-quality, naturally sourced, and packed with essential vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients to keep your pet happy and healthy. The fruits, veggies, grains, and meats used in the Wellness Core series are among the best in the business, and your pet will feel the difference.
Transparency is one of Wellness Pet Foods’ best qualities as a brand. You can find the brand’s entire list of ingredients on their website. Nothing is hidden, uncertain, or made with anything but the strictest quality standards in mind. You can find all of Wellness’ pet foods online (for dogs and cats), along with other products. You can also find them on sites like Chewy.com and Amazon.
10. Life’s Abundance
Life’s Abundance helps pets make the most out of life with quality, tasty, potent ingredients that keep your pup happy and satisfied. Dogs love the delicious, simple recipes, and humans will love the low cost and nutritional value that each scoop of Life’s Abundance dog food offers. Whether you’re raising a tiny Dachshund or a Great Dane, Life’s Abundance will be there along the way, giving your dog the nutrients it needs to grow and share life with you. Premium ingredients, great service, and prices that you can’t beat make this brand a top choice of 2021 and beyond.
Life’s Abundance believes that our pets are as much a part of our family as anyone else, which is why they need the best foods available to them. You can buy all of Life’s Abundance’s pet foods and products directly from the company website, with a subscribe and save option available.
You might not recognize the name PetCurean, but you might know about Go! Solutions. This premium dog food blend has been turning heads in the industry for a number of years with quality ingredients that your dog and you will love. The company makes dog food blends for every breed, size, and age, and even foods with special dietary needs. You can find grain-free blends, and every blend is made with high-quality meats and other natural ingredients. You can find everything from wild boar to lamb to chicken, beef, and pork in these tasty dog food blends. Give your dog food they’ll love, and yourself a product you can be proud to stand behind with PetCurean’s Go! Solutions dog food blends.
Bonus: Natural Balance
Natural Balance dog food is a brand that believes quality is the most important factor of a dog’s diet. What your dog does eat is just as important as what it doesn’t eat. That’s why Natural Balance only uses the highest-quality ingredients in its foods, so both you and your dog can be happy and satisfied with your purchase.
Crafted by animal health science experts, you can trust that every blend from Natural Balance is made only with your pet’s health and safety in mind, using 100% natural and high-quality ingredients. You can find the brand’s full lineup online at www.naturalbalanceinc.com.