Buying the best dry dog food is essential to keeping your dog healthy and happy. Of course, every dog is different, so you will need to figure out which diet is best for its stage in life, general health, and any special needs. It would be easier if your dog could tell you which food tastes good or makes them feel better, but that isn’t going to happen anytime soon, so you will likely need to figure this out on your own.
If you're looking for the best dry dog food, look no further — we've got almost a dozen excellent suggestions below. But first, let’s talk about why dry dog food is the way to go when purchasing food for your dog and/or puppy.
Why Buy Dry Dog Food for Your Dog?
For my most pet owners, convenience is why they purchase dry dog food. Dry dog food can be left out for the pet to eat at its own pace without fear of spoilage. The dry dog food stores easily in a large plastic bin with a tight lid or almost any other sealed container.
This will keep the food fresh and safe from insects, rodents, and pets. Especially if you have more than one dog, dry kibble is also more economically cost-effective. Even it is for only one dog, quality dry dog food is almost always a better buy when it comes to cost.
Dry Food vs. Wet Food?
On top of the convenience and price, dry food is the better choice than wet food is because dry foods often include ingredients that are more nutritious. Some also contain probiotic supplements to promote proper digestive function. The shelf-life is also pretty long, whether opened or still sealed. Plus, another bonus to using dry food is that the cleanup is easier.
Wet food might taste better, but it costs more. It also quickly spoils if left out. It also has a shorter shelf-life after opening the can no matter what storage you use. Wet foods can be very messy.
What Is in Dry Dog Food?
Most dry dog foods contain all of the nutrients dogs need to stay healthy. Pet foods are highly regulated and have to undergo rigorous testing by veterinary specialists. Dogs are not strict carnivores, so a lot of the best dry dog food brands also have nutrients from grains, fruits, and vegetables.
Remember they are a valuable source of essential vitamins, minerals, and fiber that helps with your dog’s digestive system. You want to be sure your dog's food is as nutritious as possible, with few fillers. The best way to determine a good dog food from a bad is to read the label.
How Should You Feed Your Dog?
Every dog is different, and when determining how much to feed your dog, there are several factors to take into account. You're going to want to consider the size of your dog, their activity, and how many times they eat a day. We are in charge of keeping our dogs healthy, and one of the key parts of that is to feed them the right amount of food. If we feed too much, then they can experience health problems due to obesity. Underfeeding can lead to other health problems such as malnutrition.
Where to Buy the Best Dry Dog Food?
Buying dog food is more straightforward than figuring out what kind and how much. You can purchase dry dog food in supermarkets, grocery stores, pet stores (online too), and online sites like Amazon and Chewy.com.
Do your pricing research and, when buying dog food, shop around for the best deal, keeping your eyes peeled for coupons. Often, if buying online, you can get a discount on bulk or subscription purchases. Prices will vary depending on the brand, where you buy, and how big the bag is that you are buying.
The Best Dry Dog Food Brands for Your Dog
Make sure you ask family, friends, and your veterinarian for advice on food as well. You might find a great recommendation wasn't on this list, and some pets are notoriously picky. Having options and being informed will help you make the right decision in the pet food aisle or online.
To bring you the best options possible, we've researched what the most popular brands on the market are, as well as things like nutrition, reviews, and customer satisfaction.
Celebrity chef Rachael Ray's Nutrish brand is a high-quality grocery store brand that uses simple, natural ingredients like real U.S. farm-raised meat (chicken, beef, and bison) combined with wholesome veggies, with added vitamins and minerals.
There are a few other dry food selection from Rachael Ray, too. "Dish" always has real chicken or beef as the number one ingredient in every recipe. It also has no fillers - corn, wheat, and soy. Instead, it has delicious bits of real chicken, carrots, peas, and apples. There's also "Just 6", intended for dogs on a limited ingredient diet.
This dog food helps you choose a back-to-basics approach to supporting your dog's health and wellness. Purina Beyond offers natural nutrition, plus essential vitamins and minerals. Your dog will get a complete and balanced meal time recipe without artificial colors, flavors or preservatives. This dry dog food recipe contains ingredients that work together to help your dog live a long, healthy life with you.
Nature's Variety provides great nutrition to keep your pets healthy and happy. The company makes the food with natural, wholesome, and delicious ingredients. It's also 100 percent free of corn, wheat, soy, and artificial colors and flavors. Plus, each recipe is rich in meat, poultry, or fish proteins to give your pets everything they need. This brand is the Trader Joe’s of dog food.
Instinct dry dog food is grain-free, high protein nutrition, and as close to its natural state as possible when it comes to kibble. Prairie dog food is the balanced, holistic nutrition that comes from pure animal protein, whole grains, and fresh vegetables and fruits.
Natural Balance offers several carefully selected formulas which feature high-quality meats and unique proteins, complex carbohydrates, and healthy fruits and vegetables. Formulated for all breeds and life stages, it offers an optimal balance of premium proteins and vital nutrients and has no artificial flavors or colors.
Earthborn Holistic is for active adult dogs. Adult Vantage helps condition your dog for life through the use of high-quality proteins, whole food ingredients, proper levels of calcium, and the addition of nutrients like beta-carotene and L-carnitine. This brand of dog food will help with your dog's muscle mass, intestinal tract, immune system, and overall body conditioning. The food contains high-quality animal and fish proteins such as chicken meal and whitefish meal.
NUTRO ULTRA Adult Dry Dog Food is a dense recipe formulated to promote a lean body and healthy skin and coat on your dog. Farm-raised chicken is the main ingredient in NUTRO® Ultra Adult Dry Dog Food. It delivers the amino acids adult dogs need to build muscle and maintain a healthy metabolism. Nutro never uses artificial flavors, colors or preservatives in their food.
Whole Wheat Farms is a line of naturally nutritious dog food that offers high-quality protein and all-natural ingredients that help support easier digestibility, less shedding, a shinier coat, increased energy, stronger nails, and healthier skin. Made the USA, every recipe has no corn, wheat or wheat by-products, no artificial flavors, no artificial colors, and no artificial preservatives. Check this one out for their high-quality dog food.
Holistic Select recipes feature the most comprehensive digestive health support for dogs. It has the right levels of probiotics, prebiotics, digestive enzymes, and natural fiber. This dry dog food helps your dog's digestive system break down food and absorb more nutrients. This reduces gas, bloating, and discomfort. Healthy digestion is critical to your dog's health.
EVO is an excellent source to satisfy your dog’s carnivorous cravings. The protein in EVO derives from premium quality meats that are rich in animal proteins, not grains. In fact, it's entirely grain-free.
Wellness CORE combines natural, premium proteins and wholesome whole grains to deliver a balanced diet full of the nutrients your dog needs. Every recipe is made with antioxidants to support their robust immune systems and balanced nutrients for optimal energy.
Required Nutrients for Dogs
All dogs thrive on high-quality food, but sometimes that high-quality food can get costly. However, dogs rely on us to make the choices that are best for them and their health. You need to shop smart and make sure you do your research on what type of food your dog should have on a daily basis.
Remember dogs, in general, need an appropriate combination of protein, fat, moisture, fiber, minerals, and vitamins. Read the labels and make sure you are buying easily-identifiable whole food ingredients and supplements. Ingredients to look for are whole proteins like chicken, beef, fish, duck, and eggs.
Make sure the food is grain-free or contains healthy whole grains like oats, quinoa, and barley. You can also consider adding supplements like omega-3 fatty acids to your dog's diet. Vegetables like sweet potatoes, peas, and carrots are always a plus in the best dry dog food. Try to avoid ingredients like unspecified “meat,” corn and other unhealthy grains and fillers. You should also avoid artificial colors, flavors, sweeteners, and preservatives.
The best advice we can give you is to talk to your veterinarian about any food concerns you may have. Since they know what your dog’s breed, age, and activity level are, they can provide you with a suggestion on the best dry dog food and homemade dog food for your dog. Likewise, if you have a senior dog, it would be wise to consult about their diet with a veterinarian. If you have an opinion on the best dry dog food that you want to recommend, please leave a comment and let us know what brand you love for your pets.