A Guide to Choosing the Healthiest Wet Dog Food


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If you’ve been reading regularly, you probably know that I’m not a huge fan of wet dog food, and neither is my veterinarian. In fact, I pretty much always recommend dry dog food. First of all, it’s better for your dog’s teeth. If you have a senior dog who’s missing a few teeth, though, it might be easier for him to eat wet food. And finally, there’s nothing all that wrong with offering wet food as an occasional treat.

So, with that in mind, let’s take a look at the benefits of wet dog food, and why you might consider feeding it to your dog, at least from time to time.

The trouble with wet dog food is that it’s generally lower in nutrients than dry food. That’s because it’s so high in moisture, other nutrients end up lacking. I really wouldn’t recommend a steady diet of wet food for that reason. That said, though, here are some of the benefits of wet dog food:

Healthiest Wet Dog Food On Amazon

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1. It Hydrates

Some dogs, for whatever reason, simply don’t consume as much water as they ought to. No one really knows why this is the case, but it does happen. If your dog is just getting enough water to get by, you might want to consider supplementing his fluid intake with the occasional offering of canned food, which contains quite a lot of water.

2. Dogs Like It

Many dogs love the smell of wet dog food, and they’re not that much different than we are in that food that smells good is more pleasing to them. If your dog is aging, he might be losing his sense of smell; that happens with humans, too. In fact, with senior humans, the loss of the sense of smell is one of the reasons that they often don’t get the nutrition they need. If your dog is getting up there in years, and not enjoying his food as much as he once did, it might be helpful to simply give him something that smells better.

3. It’s Very Chewable

In fact, your dog might not have to chew it at all. If his dental health isn’t all that good, giving him wet food can make it a lot easier for your dog to get the nutrition he needs.

Now, the Drawbacks

There are also a few disadvantages to wet dog food.

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1. It’s Messy

I shouldn’t even have to explain this, because it’s obvious. Wet dog food gets all over the floor, gets stuck to the bottom of the bowl, and often ends up all over your dog’s face. That doesn’t happen with dry food.

2. It’s Not Great for Your Dog’s Teeth

As I just suggested, wet food might be good for dogs that don’t have a lot of teeth. But if your dog’s dental health is generally good, a diet of wet dog food is going to do nothing to preserve his dental health. It’s going to get stuck in his gums and between his teeth. Best case scenario, he’s going to end up with bad breath. Worst case scenario, his teeth are going to decay and he could develop gum disease.

If you’re going to feed wet dog food all the time, you should be vigilant about brushing your dog’s teeth.

3. You’ll Have to Feed on a Schedule

If you’re feeding wet dog food, free feeding is not going to be an option for you. With Janice and Leroy, I just bring in a bag of dog food, dump it in one of those great Rubbermaid basins, and when it’s empty, I pour in another bag of dog food.

With wet food, though, it’s going to spoil if you leave it out. Once you open up that can, you have to make sure that you use it all or refrigerate anything that’s left. Even then, it’s not going to keep in the fridge forever. Once the can is opened, you’ve made a commitment.

4. It’s Pricey

Dry dog food is less expensive, usually, than wet dog food. And if you’re not using up the wet dog food, you can be in for a really high cost when it comes to feeding your dogs.

5. It’s Lower in Some Nutrients

I’m not sure why this should be, but most dry dog foods contain fruits and vegetables. Canned dog foods don’t. Dogs are omnivores, and they do better when they have veggies and fruits in their diet.

So now you know the benefits and disadvantages of wet dog foods. Let’s move on and talk about the best wet foods for your dog.

The Healthiest Wet Dog Foods

1. Nature’s Logic Canned Food – Duck & Salmon

Nature’s Logic Canned Food is very high in protein (44%) and it smells great, so it’s likely that your dog will think it tastes great. Unlike many canned foods, it also contains fruit (apples, blueberries, etc.) and veggies (carrots, broccoli, artichokes and more). It also contains very few chemicals.

2. Tiki Dog North Shore Luau Wild Salmon on Brown Rice

Tiki canned dog food has fish as its main ingredient, so it’s really high in protein and good fats. The carbs come from brown rice and sweet potatoes, and there’s also a fair bit of kale in the mix.

3. Evanger’s Hand-Packed Grain Free Chunky Chicken Casserole Dinner for Dogs

Evanger’s Chicken Casserole dog food is made from chicken, chicken broth, vegetables and fruits, and has a 44% protein content. The moisture content is very low, so even though you’re getting a wet dog food, you’re not sacrificing anything in terms of nutrition.

4. Blue Buffalo Wilderness Grain Free Canned Dog Food, Duck and Chicken Grill

Blue Buffalo Wilderness Grain Free is a very good canned dog food. The only thing I can find to criticize here is that it’s not all that high in vegetables; in fact, there are hardly any. That said, it is high in protein (46%), but once in a while, a dog likes some veggies.

Healthiest Wet Dog Food On Amazon

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The Final Word

I’m not all that keen on wet dog food. That said, though, there are times when you want to choose the healthiest wet dog food over a dry food. I did it a while ago when Leroy had a bit of an upset tummy; he just couldn’t seem to handle dry food, so I gave him the healthiest wet dog food I could find. It was just a short-term solution, though.

Generally speaking, I think dry food is best, but if you have a dog that’s finicky, you might try wet food for a while. If you have a senior with bad teeth, giving wet food can also be the better course of action.

So, as a general rule of thumb, feed dry food, but if circumstances warrant it, choose the healthiest wet dog food you can find.