All canned dog foods contain at least some water, and all too often, the manufacturers like to opt for an “extra moist” formula that means they can increase the water content, increase the weight and charge more for less food. We cut through the hypes and lables to find you the best options available.
Even if the food isn’t branded as being “extra moist”.
That said, wet dog food actually contains more protein per ounce than dry food does. So it can be a very nutritious way to feed your pet. It also often means that your dog will require less food by volume, which may leave it thinking it is still hungry. I know mine always begs me for more.
It takes self-control on the part of the owner to keep from over-feeding their pet and causing weight problems.
The other challenge is that almost all of the foods use some type of thickener and there really aren’t any ideal choices for dogs when it comes to thickeners. None of them have been directly linked to health problems in dogs, but everyone is concerned about what effects they can have.
All of the foods I review are ones that use the safer thickeners and have better ratios of food to water so you can be assured that your dog is not going to sacrifice nutritional value.
Canned Dog Food Is Inherently Healthier
One of the upsides with canned foods is that they are typically closer to the whole food your dog’s body craves. Often this means less processing and better quality ingredients and the overall effect is a more healthy diet for your pet. Proponents of the raw food diet often suggest canned food as a “first step”, especially if your pet refuses to eat raw food. Or, if your lifestyle is simply too busy to manage the raw food lifestyle.
Proponents of the raw food diet often suggest canned food as a “first step”, especially if your pet refuses to eat raw food. Or, if your lifestyle is simply too busy to manage the raw food lifestyle.
As with all foods, this is not standardized across any brand, but if you go with a quality canned meal, your dog will likely get more balance in their diet.
There are no two ways about it, though, canned food is very pricey. I’ve known many dog owners who mix the canned food into the dry kibble their pet normally gets. This raises the quality of their pet’s normal meal while simultaneously stretching out their canned food so that it fits in the budget.
A Better Choice For Some Dogs
Moist food can actually be better for a lot of dogs. Some dogs have trouble chewing and the softer food is a lot easier for them to get down. Plus, I think every dog thinks moist food is a tastier option, and will gulp it down much more readily. So if you have a finicky eater, the canned food can be a great way to help them gain weight.
Don’t Feed Your Dog Spoiled Food!
If you have never fed canned food before, you need to be aware that it can go rancid once opened. So don’t let it sit out all day. If your dog doesn’t eat it right away, put their dish in the fridge to keep their food cold until they become hungry.
If you have part of a can left over after feeding your dog, you can put it into the refrigerator and keep it for a few days. Most people recommend using up the dog food by day 3 to keep the risk of bacteria setting in at it’s lowest.
#3 Natural Balance L.I.D.
I’m a pretty big fan of Natural Balance’s Limited Ingredient diet. Sure, their pitch might be a little bit gimmicky, but I think their heart is really good. And there are countless dogs who are only alive thanks to them offering a high quality food.
The idea behind this line of products is to reduce the number of ingredients to produce a wholesome, simple meal that dogs can easily digest. By identifying their ingredients clearly, they are also able to help their pets avoid food sensitivities.
Finally, by including more whole food products, Natural Balance gives dog’s digestion a break and a chance to finally regain their health. Gut flora can recover, and many reviewers talk about the better coat health they get out of this food.
I do wish they didn’t have to put so many preservatives in it ( like Copper Sulfate), but I understand why they wouldn’t want their food poisoning our pets. So I’ll take the trade off.
Besides, if preservatives bother us that much we can always go with raw food, no?
My only complaint with this blend is that it looks so yummy. I mean, I seriously would not mind being a dog if this is what I got to eat all the time.
I really appreciate the variety of veggies they sneak into this blend. peas, potatoes, sweet potatoes, celery, red peppers… they get it all and help your pet get that balanced nutrition that is so important.
Granted, this might not be the best choice if you are trying to work around allergies, but for most pets who just need the best diet out there, this is going to be stellar choice.
Finally, I like the grain-free approach. Sure, a little grain won’t hurt your pet but most manufacturers overdo it. By going with a grain-free formula like Wellness, you know you are getting the best stuff possible.
And with 5 flavors to choose from, there is guaranteed to be something for everyone.
Taste Of The Wild
Taste of the Wild continues to be one of the best values in quality dog food brands. Their entire premise is to create foods that most nearly mimic the well-rounded diets of wild canine.
You get a lot of exotic foods in their mixes. Stuff like bison and venison. Just the stuff that your dog’s forefathers would have eaten. (it even has the raspberries and blueberries that coyotes enjoy).
The end result is a very well-rounded food that dogs cannot get enough of. The price is normally pretty close to the other canned foods on this list, and I have to say that I think it is one of the best — if most overlooked — values in the canned dog food market.