Feeding your pooch the right food is a big part of looking after it, so you want to make sure you’re buying the best dog food out there.
To help you in that quest, we surveyed 3,122 Which? members who are pet owners to get their verdict on the dog foods that go down well with their pet, and don’t cost the earth.
13 out of the 30 dog food brands were rated five stars for the quality of their ingredients, but some scored just two out of five. And it’s second year in a row for the brand which came out on top overall.
Head to our best and worst dog food brands rated guide to see the full results and find the best option for your pet.
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Does good dog food cost more?
Giving your dog top-notch feed doesn’t have to be expensive. Our top brand was rated four out of five stars for value for money by members, whereas some pricier brands failed to impress.
If you’re looking to cut costs, one budget supermarket brand stood out from the competition for its value and it also received four stars for the quality of ingredients, making it a great pragmatic choice.
Nevertheless, dog owners seem ready to splash some cash when they perceive the dog food is having a positive effect on their pet. One pricey brand was rated as good for dogs with sensitive stomachs and for food-specific nutrition – situations where you might be happy to spend more to help a pet in need.
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What about raw dog food?
The British Veterinary Association (BVA) does not recommend raw food diets, at least without talking to your vet first, but nevertheless ‘raw’ dog food (eg raw meat and other veg, bones etc) is becoming an increasingly popular choice: 16% of those we surveyed have fed their pet a raw food diet.
Out of those who tried it, 37% said they would not go back to dry or wet diets.
But many also recognized the challenges of a raw food diet. Key concerns included:
- 34% – don’t feel they have enough information
- 24% – don’t want to handle raw meat
- 21% – wary of the contamination risk.
If you decide to try a raw food diet, make sure to speak to your vet first and take special care when handling food due to contamination risks. You can find out more from the Pet Food Manufacturer’s Association (PFMA) raw food guidelines.
Easing the squeeze: cut your dog food costs
If you’re looking to scale back household costs, switching to the best-rated supermarket own-brand dog food could help.
One own-brand supermarket was particularly popular and consumers rated it highly. When we compared prices for a 3kg bag of complete dry dog food, it was just 76p per kg, compared to nearer £5 per kg for the top brand overall.
This means you could potentially save around £130 a year if you switched from the top-scoring brand to the best performing supermarket own brand*.
See our full dog food buying guide for brand ratings and tips on choosing the best food for your dog.
Also a cat owner? Check out the best and worst cat food brands.
*Based on a 10kg dog eating 150g per day.
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