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Worst Dog Foods For Your Dog

Updated on December 30, 2013

Lady my Black Lab

Still agile and happy at 13 years old.
Still agile and happy at 13 years old.

Best and Worst Dog Foods for Your Dog

Dogs are meat eaters, and have been systematically fed inferior and even harmful food as promoted by the big manufacturers.

Why would anyone think it is okay to feed a carnivore a primarily corn based diet? This is equivalent to feeding ourselves a lifetime of over processed fast food. Yest, it eliminates the hunger, but at what cost.

As with us and lifelong unhealthy diets, the worst dog foods made will ultimately shorten your dog's life,


  • Any unnamed meat or fat source. (ie. meat meal - a *rendered product)
  • Any food that contains by-products. (a *rendered product)
  • Corn/ Wheat/ Soy in flour/ meal/gluten or other deriviative
  • Rice as the carbohydrate if it is listed more than once.
  • Chemicals and / or Preservatives such as BHA/BHT
  • MENADIONE SODIUM BISULFITE -a synthetic version of Vitamin K that is a know Carcinogenic
  • PROPYLENE GLYCOL - (yes, used in hydraulic fluids and as a solvent. This is banned in Europe because of the known side effects.
  • Animal digest (a *rendered product)
  • Sugar and colouring

ABOUT RENDERING: Substandard ingredients are “denatured” before rendering. by spraying crude carbolic acid, cresylic disinfectant or citronella on these dregs. ( *NOTE: THESE DENATURING PRODUCTS ARE TOXIC.)

This has definitely become a buyers beware market. If you can easily read a dog food label and see ingredients that are recognizable as something you would eat or easily find in your grocery store, then that indicates a healthier dog food.


  • Natural Preservatives
  • Named Fat Sources, Such a Chicken fat, Salmon oil, etc.
  • Fresh Fruits and Vegetables
  • Named Protein Sources ( Chicken as opposed to poultry by-products and/or Chicken meal as opposed to meat meal
  • Healthy Vitamins, Chelated Minerals, and Supplements
  • If grains are included they should be whole grains such as brown rice, barley, or oatmeal.

This can all be extremely confusing and we must educate ourselves and be our pet's advocates.

You will find a vast variety of products from the worst dog foods to the best dog foods and a lot of in between.

You will find my original Top 7 Worst Dog Food Brands that I wrote over 2 years ago in 2011, and it is still as relevant today as it was then.

Best Dog Food

Since the original pet food contamination and recall causing so many unnecessary deaths in 2008, we as consumers have had to become our own advocates.

There is still confusion about what is the best dog food to feed our dogs because we have many more better choices.

The best dog food ingredients to look for on labels are:

  • 2 or more specific named meats in the first five ingredients
  • Grain Free is good, but if there are grains there should be only one
  • Corn, Wheat and Soy Free
  • GMO Free, Antibiotic Free, and Hormone Free
  • Chelated Minerals
  • Contains fresh fruits and vegetables
  • "Natural Preservatives" - These dog foods WILL have an expiry date.
  • Fat Sources which are named (ie. not "animal fat", but chicken fat, salmon oil etc.)
  • Fresh and local ingredients (You want nothing from China)
  • See if Human Grade Manufacturing plants are used for the production of your dog food.. These are plants that are certified for use in the production of human consumption food.

The best dog food manufacturers will always have a mission statement declaring where they source their products from. Check you dog food company's website.

You will see that the better quality dog foods are produced at smaller and/or family owned companies, and that is all they do.

They are proud and will use statements such as:

  • Food used in this product is fit for human consumption,
  • Local and Fresh human grade ingredients,
  • Organic ingredients,
  • free range poultry/meat sources,
  • Raised or fished within our region and delivered to our kitchens fresh each day (From Orijen's site)
  • No outsourcing
  • Look for statements such as Manufactured by or made by rather than Manufactured under licence for or made for. The latter indicates outsourcing.
  • The use of "fresh meat", not rendered unknown by-products

There are many different ways to determine if you are feeding a high quality food, and I found one of the easiest ways is to start by reading the ingredients labels. If the list of ingredients are something you can identify and would actually be something dogs would eat in the wild, then the food is probably of a higher quality. A cheaper dog food's ingredients don't sound like "real food"

Lola, My Golden Lab gets a variety diet of the best dog food, including Orijen, Homemade, and Dehydrated/Freeze Dried Food.
Lola, My Golden Lab gets a variety diet of the best dog food, including Orijen, Homemade, and Dehydrated/Freeze Dried Food.

Best Dog Food Ingredients vs. Worst Dog Food Ingredients


  • CHICKEN (ground with bone)*,
  • TURKEY (ground with bone)*,



  • GROUND WHOLE CORN, - 1rst ingredient should be meat
  • MEAT AND BONE MEAL, - What kind of meat? Where did it come from?
  • CORN GLUTEN MEAL, - More corn (used for filler, not nutrition)
  • ANIMAL FAT (PRESERVED WITH BHA/CITRIC ACID), - (BHA is a known cancer causing preservative, which is banned in Europe)
  • SOYBEAN MEAL, - More filler
  • GROUND WHOLE WHEAT, - Wheat is a known allergen and another unnecessary food for canines.
  • BREWERS RICE, - Leftovers also used as a filler
  • DRIED PLAIN BEET PULP, Used as fiber, but not a healthy choice
  • SALT,
  • VEGETABLE OIL ([SOURCE OF LINOLEIC ACID] PRESERVED WITH BHA/BHT), - BHA/BHT - More known cancer causing ingredients.
  • ADDED FD&C COLORS (RED 40, YELLOW 5, BLUE 2). - totally unnecessary with no nutritional value.

As can be seen by the side by side comparison 1 of these 2 products has an abundance of fresh, local preservative free meat, while the other actually does not have any fresh meat.

So this is a true buyers beware scenario for those of us who wish to feed our companions the healthiest dog food. We have all been brainwashed that any kibble off the grocery store shelf is the best dog food.

Not true. I have listed the top worst dog food ingredients here.

© 2013 janed54


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