What are the best dry dog foods ranked by vets? We consulted experts to help you make a choice from the many options out there when it comes to dry dog foods.
Most commercially produced dog food is made with animal feed grade ingredients and comes dry in bags (also known in the US as kibble) or wet in cans. Dry food contains 6–10% moisture by volume, as compared to 60–90% in canned food. Semi-moist products typically run 25–35%. Isotopic analysis of dog food in the Brazilian market has found that they are basically made of maize and poultry by-products.
Dry dog food usually consists of bagged kibble that contains 3-11% water. It makes up the vast majority of pet foods.
Dry food is both convenient and typically inexpensive, with over $8 billion worth being sold in 2010 – a 50% increase over just seven years earlier. (source)
The manufacturing process of dry dog food
Dry food processing is popular in the pet food industry, as it is an efficient way to supply continuous production of feed in many varieties. It is energy-efficient, allows for large amounts of feed to be used, and is cost-effective.
To make dog kibble, a process known as extrusion is done. A simple extruder consists of a barrel, helical screws, and a die (tool to cut and shape food). Feed ingredients are solid at room temperature; therefore, the extrusion process of these ingredients requires a temperature above 100 degrees Celsius, achieved by the use of steam, hot water, or other heat sources in order to soften or melt the mixture and allow for fluidity through the barrel. During the extrusion process, the high amounts of pressure applied to the mixture forces it to enter through the die before exiting the extruder completely, where it is cut to its desired size by a rotating fly knife.
Related: Top rated dog foods by veterinarians
Best Dry Dog Foods Ranked By Vets (Top 5 Updated For 2020)
Below we have a list of the best dry dog foods ranked by vets that you should consider feeding your dog.
All of the following dog food brands are recommended by veterinarians. Still, before you pick and feed your dog any of the following, always talk to your veterinarian first.
Best Overall: Hill's Science Diet Dry Dog Food
Hill’s Science Diet Dry Dog Food is one of the best dry dog foods ranked by vets that you should consider feeding your dog. Nothing beats Hill’s Science Diet Dog Food. The food meets the nutritional requirements set by AAFCO and it is made with carefully added ingredients. It helps your dog to manage his weight and sensitive skin and stomach.
Why Choose Hill’s Science Diet for your Dog?
- Made with all-natural and nutritionally dense ingredients
- Meets and exceeds the nutritional and quality standards of the food industry
- Clean from all kinds of additives, chemicals, preservatives, and unnatural colors and flavors
Science Diet Large Breed dry food for dogs contains vitamin E, omega-6 fatty acids and other key nutrients to help keep your dog’s skin in peak condition and make his coat noticeably more shiny in as little as 30 days (vs. previously fed grocery foods).
Rated #2: Royal Canin Dog Food
Royal Canin is a trusted name in the world of pet foods. The brand offers specifically designed and prepared dog food formulas for puppies and adult dogs. It offers some specific foods for particular breeds, which can be very helpful.
While certain breeds don’t require different nutrients from other breeds, some characteristics of the Royal Canin breed-specific foods are quite appropriate.
It incorporates a combination of dry and wet food that can benefit your dog
- Dry: Concentration of nutrients and texture provides a brushing effect.
- Wet: Moisture content can help support hydration.
Rated #3: Purina ProPlan
Purina Pro Plan Pet Food & Nutrition offers a full spectrum dog nutrition. Its unique blend of dry dog food, kibble, and shredded morsels of canned food. The combination adds a unique flavor to the food that offers a hearty meal to your dog.
Why Choose Purina Pro Plan Pet Food & Nutrition for your Dog?
- Real chicken is the primary ingredient that provides about 26% protein-to-fat ratio
- The food is rich and has a healthy blend of vitamin A, Omega 6 fatty acids and probiotics
- Helps in maintaining healthy digestion
With real beef, lamb, chicken, turkey, or salmon as the #1 ingredient, these formulas feature crunchy kibble and tender, meaty pieces for a taste and texture.
Each formula is highly digestible to promote optimal nutrient absorption. They’re rich in antioxidants to support his immune health and contain guaranteed live probiotics and natural prebiotic fiber to support his digestive health.
These flavorful dry dog foods deliver complete and balanced nutrition for adult dogs, so you can be sure your dog gets the nutrition he needs with a meal he’ll enjoy.
Wellness CORE’s grain-free dog food formulas are made with organic and high-quality protein options like chicken, fish, turkey, and duck.
It is 100% natural and grain-free made with turkey, chicken, salmon oil, and fruits and vegetables to help support your dog’s optimal health and fortified with antioxidants, probiotics, vitamins, and minerals, including fish and flax omega blend for healthy skin and coat.
It is based on the nutritional philosophy that dogs thrive on a diet mainly comprised of meat. Each grain-free, nutrient-rich formula provides high-quality protein for your dog with no meat by-products or fillers, grain, corn, soy, wheat-gluten or artificial preservatives, colors, or flavors.
Rated #5: Nutro Ultra
Nutro Ultra provides a natural blend of ingredients for optimal nutrition. Nutro Ultra believes that dogs deserve to enjoy their food as much as we enjoy ours.
And like us, they shouldn’t have to compromise on taste. Every Nutro Ultra recipe is crafted using quality ingredients that satisfy and nourish. These delicious recipes start with real chicken as the #1 ingredient and feature a trio of high-quality protein from chicken, lamb, and salmon and a blend of 15 vibrant superfoods like coconut, chia, kale, and blueberries.
The recipe provides a balanced diet for adult dogs that’s nutrient-rich and full of flavor that’ll help your dog thrive. These dry recipes are made with Non-GMO ingredients and have no chicken by-product meal, corn, wheat, or soy protein and no artificial flavors, colors, or preservatives. Plus, these nutrient-rich recipes are full of flavor and have high-quality protein as the foundation of every recipe.