Even though there aren’t as many commercial dog food varieties, more dog owners are moving towards raw vegetable and meat diets for their dogs given all the stories about recalls and the types of ingredients used. But raw food diets come with their own risks, so it’s best to know as much as possible about this trend before you rush out and change Fido’s diet.
Choosing a raw diet means researching as many raw pet food recipes as possible and looking at nutrition. It also means shopping for all the ingredients and making the food yourself, which can be time-consuming. Or you can opt for freeze-dried or frozen raw dog foods.
At the moment there isn’t a lot to choose from ready-to-eat raw diet dog foods, but what is available is enough to get your pup’s mouthwatering and his tail wagging. We have chosen five of the best raw food for dogs that meet our rather stringent standards.
At a Glance: Our Choices for the Best Raw Dog Food
- Stella & Chewy's Stella's Super Beef Dinner Patties Grain-Free Freeze-Dried Dog Food
- Instinct by Nature’s Variety Raw Market Grain-Free Chicken Recipe Nuggets Freeze-Dried Dog Food
- K9 Natural Lamb Green Tripe Raw Grain-Free Freeze-Dried Dog Food
- The Honest Kitchen Human Grade Dehydrated Grain-Free Dog Food
- Primal Raw Frozen (Grinds)
*Note: The links in the table above, as well as several links in the remainder of the article below, will take you to over to Chewy.com where you can find out more information about the products, such as current prices and customer reviews.
For a lot of dog owners, the choice to feed their pets a raw diet is because it’s more natural. Dogs are carnivores; they have the teeth of a carnivore and the gastrointestinal system of one, even though they’ve been living with humans for 15,000 years and have adapted to eating grains and cereals. Over time, dogs have developed three genes that allow them to digest starch more easily than their undomesticated counterparts, but they’re still meat-eaters.
Finding the best raw dog food has a number of benefits, including:
- Reduced allergies and symptoms
- Better digestion
- Healthier skin and shinier coat
- Weight management is improved
- For chronically ill dogs, there have been reports of improvement in their health after switching to a raw diet from commercial dry dog food
- Our list of the best raw food for dogs is by no means a definitive one, but we’ve certainly taken careful consideration in choosing them
Stella & Chewy’s is one of the best raw dry dog food brand options for your best friend. The ingredients include grass-fed beef, bone, and organs and it’s made in the USA. There are no suspicious looking, or sounding, ingredients from different corners of the world and according to dog-owners in the know, their pups love the taste and texture.
What we like is it’s perfect for dogs of all ages, from puppies to seniors and every stage in between. The beef dinner patties from Stella & Chewy’s is excellent for digestion and if your pet is prone to allergies, this will reduce allergic reactions like dandruff and itching.
Really easy to prepare, take a quick look at this video:
If you’re looking for the best raw dog food that’s grain and gluten free, Instinct by Nature’s Variety Raw Market Grain-Free dog food is an excellent choice. The brand prides itself on only using cage-free chickens and organic vegetables and fruits.
All the essential vitamins and minerals are included, which means your pup gets a tasty and well-balanced meal.
K9 Natural has one of the best raw dog food recipe formulas. Their food is made using 100% natural ingredients without any additives, artificial preservatives, colorants, or flavors. The recipe is 85% raw meat, with a few organ bits, crushed bone, and blood from free-range, grass-fed, and hormone-free livestock in New Zealand. The vegetables and fruits provide all the necessary minerals and vitamins.
If you’re looking for a premium-quality raw food diet for an energetic pup that battles with allergies or digestions, K9 is one of the best raw food picks for dogs.
The Honest Kitchen Human Grade Grain-Free dog food should be on the majority of the best raw dog food recipe lists. It’s well-balanced, nutritional and does what it says: provides your pooch with tasty food that’s free from fillers and other harmful ingredients.
Their recipes are antibiotic and hormone free and there are no GMOs. Honest Kitchen’s food is good enough for humans to eat. In fact, it might even be healthier than some of the junk we consume.
If you’re looking for the best raw diet for dogs Primal Raw Frozen is as good as it gets. The freeze-dried formula gives pet owners a simple and convenient way of feeding their dogs a raw diet that’s balanced and nutritionally sound. Also, the balanced bones and raw food diet (BARF) nuggets can be stored safely on a shelf, without taking up space in your refrigerator.
What differentiates Primal Raw Frozen Grind from other raw foods is this is a supplement and shouldn’t be fed continuously or on its own, as a meal.
For convenience, ease of use, and nutritional value, you’re not going to get much better than this.
There you have it, our best raw dog food picks that are currently available on the market. Although there aren’t nearly as many choices as commercial dog food products, there are enough options for you to choose from.
While we’ve taken the time to select these carefully for you, there are other great brands available that you might prefer, from the price and ingredients to the taste and flavors for your dog. Before you and your dog BARF for joy, we suggest you speak with your vet or animal nutritionist first. They can help you select a raw food diet that suits your pup’s needs according to his age, health, weight, breed, and any other factors that might play a role.