Review Of The Best Grain Free Dry Dog Food

by | May 5, 2019 | 0 comments

Welcome to our review of the best grain free dry dog food.

Our review will pick out the best grain free dry dog food and explain why up-to-date information on the best dry dog food for puppies and in particular the best dry dog food for English Bulldogs is essential for your dogs’ health. This review will help you get the facts on the nutritional requirements your dog needs to live a healthy and happy life.

Grain free diets were developed to help dogs that suffer from cereal & grain allergies. When feeding the best dry dog food for small breeds or dogs with allergies the quality of the ingredients you give your growing puppy will dictate their future wellbeing, which is why it is so vital to get the choice of food right from the beginning. The best grain free dry food can also be fed to dogs without allergies, for those owners that prefer to give their dogs food with higher meat content.

Dogs, like their human owners can suffer from an intolerance toward wheat, grains, and cereals. This isn’t the food they would naturally eat in the wild so the digestive system has not developed to process these types of food. The side effects of intolerance to wheat can be unpleasant with stomach aches and enormous releases of foul smelling bowel gas. You know what I mean, we’ve all been there!

In this eventuality moving to a grain-free or wheat free dog food can help prevent symptoms from taking over your life, or in this case your dog’s life.
Wheat free foods will always have higher concentrations of protein in them. That’s good news for your dog and for you, because you will not need to feed as much food as you would need to, if you used a filler based dog food.

Do grain free foods justify all the hype?

The only data worth looking at on the best grain free dry dog food is the nutritional value of the product. Is it complete and balanced? If the label claims the food is complete and balanced, then it has to, by law, contain all the nutrients and proteins a dog needs daily without the requirement of added supplements. But saying that, it is worth remembering that all breeds are different and require various nutritional compositions for their particular size and characteristics. Therefore manufactures produce a range of foods for each category of a breed.

Is grain free, carb free? best dry dog food for puppies

Owners who research the best grain free dry food and choose to use them believe that the diet should be high in protein and low in carbohydrates. This is not necessarily a bad thing but generally these types of diets are to treat illness such as diabetes. However, just because you are using a grain free food, that does not mean the formula is low in carbs. Manufacturers tend to replace the grains with vegetables such as peas, lentils, and potatoes. That is a good thing as new research in cardiovascular problems in large dogs has pointed to the cause being a lack of carbohydrates in the diet of the dogs affected.

Is natural best?

The answer to that question depends on the definition of natural. When you read a dog food label from the best grain free dry  food that says natural, they should mean the ingredients are whole foods such as real chicken, beef or lamb. Natural food will contain no meat by-products, artificial preservatives, flavors, and colors. The recipe will also be grain free.

There are two schools of thought on the subject of grain free dog food. Owners argue that the dog’s natural diet in the wild always had some form of grain, like wild vegetables in it. It may be true that dogs do not eat grains in the wild but they would eat carbohydrates such as roots and grasses.  Overtime our pets have evolved to digest the same carbohydrates as their owners.

Dog food allergies

It may surprise dog owners to know that food allergies can often come from none grain ingredients. Corn, wheat, and soy are difficult to digest, however, new research points to the real problem of allergies being meats and fats. Previously nutritionists thought meats were easy for dogs to digest but the surprising results in the latest studies have shown that the most common allergen was in fact beef. Corn accounted for only a minority of allergy cases in dogs.

The best grain free dry dog food diets are still the first option for pet owners when the dogs have allergies, however, the pet food you choose must still be complete and balanced. Overtime the most important factor in your dog’s diet is that it has enough vitamins, minerals, and nutrients to support your dog daily.  If you are in any doubt, you should contact your vet and get advice from them. Working together with your vet you can determine the correct diet for the breed of dog you have.

Different brands of dog food have very different ideas about the definition of grain-free food. Some products will have no grain at all while others will include alternative grains such as rice, peas, lentils, and potatoes, which they will argue are a source of natural carbohydrates that are needed for extra energy. Other manufacturers believe that the best dry dog food for dogs are protein-rich, high fat, meat based recipes with no unnecessary carbohydrates included.  If your puppy is also allergic to gluten, that does not mean they are allergic to all grains, as oatmeal, for example, is a grain that contains very little gluten and can be used in a gluten-free diet. You will find that the cheaper varieties of dog food all contain corn and wheat and use them as fillers, these are poor quality foods and use the filler to give the product more weight. They are not the best grain free dry dog food on the market. Dogs will need to eat more of this food therefore they will produce more bodily waste and greater odors around the house.

Should puppies be fed grain? 

Puppies can have two types of digestive ailments. We can call one an intolerance and the other an allergy. In both cases it is advised to seek out and use the best grain free dry dog food. If your puppy does not have any allergies or intolerances, then it doesn’t really make any sense to put them on a grain-free diet. The overall consensus is that the food needs to be balanced and healthy and provide your puppy with enough high-quality protein and fat so they may grow with no food related abnormalities. So, recapping you should look for the best grain free dry dog food that are free of artificial or synthetic preservatives, colors, and flavors and that the food meets the AAFCO standards for nutrition. The food should have real meat and no by-products and it should include vitamins, vegetables, and fruits. The best grain free dry dog food contain Omega-3 and fatty acids with high doses of DHA which promote healthy skin joints and coat.

When looking for best grain free dry dog food you should check carefully the ingredients on the label and look for such terms as no wheat, corn or soy. Also check that there are no other types of ingredients such as rice, barley, or rye. Research the brand making the food and look for reputable brands that receive good reviews on internet shopping sites such as Amazon or Chewy. Another top tip if your puppy has an allergy or intolerance is to never feed them from your kitchen table.

How to spot allergies

The easiest way to spot an allergy in your puppy is to observe them after they have eaten. They may vomit or have loose stools with excessive gas. If you feel there is something wrong with your puppy, then your first port of call is the vet who will examine your dog properly. The vet will carry out all the necessary tests and determine exactly what the problem is. Most of the time the treatment will simply be to change the diet to the best grain free dry dog food for two to three months.

Food intolerances are not as serious as allergies but can leave your puppy upset and uncomfortable. Intolerances can also manifest in other ways such as skin infections, itchiness, with redness around the ears or under the legs. If your puppy is reluctant to eat, the reason may not be intolerance or allergies at all, therefore it’s very important to take your dog to the vet to see exactly what the problem is.

Conclusion

The best grain free dry dog food you opt for must have quality natural ingredients. The brand you choose will probably have more to do with lifestyle than cost. You could try a variety of brands to see which one your dog prefers. Below we will review the best grain free dry dog food and the best dry dog food for dogs as well as the best dry dog food for Bulldogs as they’re the ones planned for pups that will grow to a squat medium size.

Best Grain Free Dry Foods

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ORIJEN Dry Dog Food, Original
  • Biologically appropriate and high in protein and low in carbohydrates
  • Used by award-winning breeders across the globe
  • Replicates the type of food eaten in the wild
Check Price on Amazon.com
CANIDAE All Life Stages Dog Dry Food
  • Suits dogs in all life stages and those with unique dietary needs
  • The company sticks to the philosophy of quality ingredients that are locally sourced.
  • High-quality recipes with many varieties
Check Price on Amazon.com
Merrick Grain Free Dry Dog Food
  • The combination of ingredients will support your dog’s healthy skin and coat
  • Deboned beef is the primary ingredient, mixed with real fruits and vegetables
  • The company does not use artificial preservatives or fillers
Check Price on Amazon.com
Blue Buffalo Wilderness High Protein Grain Free Dog Food
  • Comes in small kibble bite sizes for easy chewing
  • Developed with the help of a holistic veterinarian and an animal nutritionist
  • Enhanced with vitamins, minerals, and Blue Wilderness LifeSource bits
Check Price on Amazon.com
Taste of The Wild Grain Free Premium High Protein Dry Dog Food
  • Good quantity of natural antioxidants from real fruits and vegetables
  • Formulated with novel proteins including buffalo and bison
  • Includes dried chicory root for prebiotic support and healthy digestion
Check Price on Amazon.com

The Review

ORIJEN Dry Dog Food, Original, Biologically Appropriate & Grain Free

Orijen’s dog food is known to be the best dry dog food for English Bulldogs because of their quality grain-free natural biological recipes. They are widely regarded as producers of the best grain free dry dog food.

What makes Orijen unique is that they source their ingredients from locally produced growers who deliver to their kitchens daily. Orijen food is used by award-winning breeders across the globe.

Origins quality and reputation for making nourishing natural food that best replicates the type of food eaten in the wild is second to none. The products are known to be high in meat and fat proteins containing as much as 90% meat, which is 3 times the amount used in conventional recipes. Orijen guarantees that will be a minimum of 38% meat with a healthy dose of grain-free carbohydrates like fruits and vegetables, all of their products are grain-free. At this time Orijen only produces dry dog food for all life stages.

To sum up: Origin food is made in Canada at their award-winning kitchens in Alberta. It is biologically appropriate and high in protein and low in carbohydrates, it is also grain free. There is a minimum of 38% protein delivered in a traditional kibble as well as a freeze-dried  option. The only negative point at the moment is that food is only available as a dried kibble and the formulas may contain plant proteins like peas and dried alfalfa, these ingredients can in a small minority of cases trigger food allergies.

ORIJEN Dry Dog Food

Biologically appropriate and high in protein and low in carbohydrates, also grain free.

CANIDAE All Life Stages Dog Dry Food

Canidae is a family owned and run pet food company that started out in 1996 in Brownwood, Texas. To start, they sold pet food out of the back of their trucks and now have a large production facility, but they still stick to the philosophy of quality ingredients that are locally sourced. Canidae offer high-quality recipes with many varieties including the popular grain-free dry dog food and limited ingredient recipes.

Canidae uses premium proteins and digestible carbohydrates in each of its formulas to suit dogs in all life stages and those with unique dietary needs.

The Canidae Grain-Free PURE lineup includes nine grain-free formulas made with premium proteins such as duck, wild boar, and fresh lamb. They also have specific recipes for small dog breeds like English Bulldogs.

Canidae also produces different brands aimed at varying price points. Their ‘Under the sun’ brand is still made with fresh ingredients but at a lower price for owners on a budget.

To sum up: Based in the USA, this family-owned independent company only sources fresh regional ingredients. It has a wide variety of high-quality recipes for all life stages and has grain-free and limited ingredient formulas for dogs with food allergies. It has a separate brand for dog owners on a budget, and recipes for small breed dogs like English Bulldogs. Canidae always rates high with consumers, receiving excellent reviews and that makes it the best dry dog food for English Bulldogs.

CANIDAE All Life Stages Dog Dry Food

Wide variety of high-quality recipes for all life stages. Always rates high with consumers, receiving excellent reviews.

Merrick Grain Free Dry Dog Food

Merrick started making dog food over 30 years ago in Hereford, Texas. Garth Merrick cooked for his own dog to make sure she was getting the best food Garth could provide. Merrick guarantee they use high quality ingredients that deliver appropriate levels of proteins, vitamins, minerals, and healthy fats. The recipes include real whole foods from farmers they know and trust. They will not use artificial preservatives or fillers and are committed to making life better for pets and their owners.

Merrick Grain-Free Dry Dog Food delivers allergy-friendly nutrition with a grain-free recipe that features real deboned beef, along with sweet potatoes, peas, apples, and blueberries. Created with vitamins and minerals for the complete and balanced diet your dog needs, it also contains high doses of glucosamine and chondroitin for increased mobility, along with high levels of Omega-3 for healthy skin and a shiny coat.

To sum up: Deboned beef is the primary ingredient, mixed with real fruits and vegetables, for the best nutrition and flavor. This is a grain-free recipe with no gluten ingredients, no artificial colors, flavors or preservatives. The combination of ingredients will support your dog’s healthy skin and coat. Made in Merrick’s Texas facility using the world’s best locally sourced ingredients from farmers they know and trust and that makes it the best dry dog food for English Bulldogs.

Merrick Grain Free Dry Dog Food

Grain-free recipe with no gluten ingredients, no artificial colors, flavors or preservatives. The combination of ingredients will support your dog’s healthy skin and coat.

Blue Buffalo Wilderness High Protein Grain Free, Natural Adult Small Breed Dry Dog Food

Blue Buffalo’s story is interesting. Blue was the family dog and upon contracting cancer the Bishop family decided that they needed to provide the best food they possibly could to help Blue recover from his illness. That meant only using premium quality ingredients. They worked with a holistic veterinarian and an animal nutritionist to develop the Blue Life Protection Formula, which has proved so popular in the United States. Over the years they have added to this product line, but always remembering their beloved dog Blue who remains the inspiration for everything they do.

Blue Buffalo Wilderness adult small breed dog food is a high protein and low fat recipe. Created from deboned chicken, chicken meal and fish meal, makes it a healthy and nutritious food for little dogs including English Bulldogs. This grain-free product is enhanced with vitamins, minerals, and Blue Wilderness LifeSource bits; which contain a unique blend of antioxidants and vitamins, to help boost your tiny dog’s immune system.

LifeSource bits is a proprietary formula that keeps your small breed dog healthy and full of energy. Free from grains and artificial colors, flavors, preservatives, and animal by-products makes this a super choice for your little fella.

To sum up: Blue Buffalo Wilderness adult small breed dog food is free from grains and packed with protein. It has Blue Buffalo Wilderness ‘LifeSource bits’ with vitamins and antioxidants. There are three different meat sources and they add glucosamine for healthy bones and joints. This Blue Wilderness kibble has nutrients that will keep a small dog going throughout all life stages, and it comes in small kibble bite sizes for easy chewing and that makes it the best dry dog food for English Bulldogs.

Blue Buffalo Wilderness High Protein Grain Free

It has nutrients that will keep a small dog going throughout all life stages, and it comes in small kibble bite sizes for easy chewing

Taste of The Wild best dry dog food for puppies

Taste of the Wild is a family-owned and operated company who believe dog owners should have access to high quality food at affordable prices and in this case the best dry dog food for puppies. Taste of the Wild was created with the philosophy that the food we give to our dogs should mimic as closely as possible what they would eat in the wild. Production is at five facilities in the United States. Taste of the Wild assures its customers they have a thorough vetting process and cultivate close relationships with their suppliers wherever they are.

Taste of the Wild combines nature’s best ingredients to create a substantial, nutritious meal for your dog. Taste of the Wild High Prairie Puppy Formula Grain-Free Dry Dog Food is formulated with novel proteins including buffalo and bison. This grain-free recipe includes peas and sweet potatoes that deliver digestible nutrition your growing puppy needs. There is a good quantity of natural antioxidants from real fruits and vegetables and dried chicory root for prebiotic support and healthy digestion. Essential minerals are chelated with amino acids to optimize their absorption and ensure maximum benefit, for a complete and balanced nutrition from the world famous Taste of the Wild.

To sum up: This product is one of the best dry dog food for dogs and small breed dogs like English Bulldogs. Buffalo is the primary ingredient followed by other real protein-rich ingredients including bison, roasted venison and beef.

It’s a grain-free recipe with added vitamins and real fruits and vegetables that help support overall health, while omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids support healthy skin and coat.

Made with ingredients from trusted and sustainable sources by a family-owned company that prides itself on the highest food safety protocols because your cute little friend deserves nothing but the best.

Taste of The Wild Grain Free Premium High

Made with ingredients from trusted and sustainable sources by a family-owned company that prides itself on the highest food safety protocols.

Wellness CORE Grain-Free Puppy Chicken & Turkey Recipe Dry Dog Food

Wellness Core started production in the 1990s by working with animal nutrition experts, veterinarians, and scientists to develop food they believed would disrupt the market. They pride themselves on supporting local communities in creating sustainable long-term initiatives to help the environment. The Wellpet Foundation supports non-profit organizations and activities that will encourage owners to develop a healthy and active lifestyle with their pets.

Wellness CORE Grain-Free Puppy Chicken & Turkey Recipe Dry Dog Food contains real meat for muscle strength, prebiotics and probiotics for digestion, and flaxseed for healthy skin. Your puppy or English bulldog will gobble down this wholesome food.

The grain-free recipe is crafted with protein sourced from real chicken and turkey to provide your puppy with the protein-focused nutrition he needs to grow healthy and strong. Wellness guarantees to exclude undesirable ingredients like meat by-products, wheat, corn, soy, artificial colors, flavors and preservatives.

To sum up: The high-protein and grain-free recipe is crafted with real chicken and turkey. There is salmon oil to help support your puppies cognitive development and their skin and coat health.

Good levels of calcium and phosphorus help support bone growth and the kibble is coated with probiotics to support your young puppies digestive health, plus it’s crafted with nutrient-rich ingredients including broccoli, kale and spinach.

Made without meat by-products, wheat, corn, soy, artificial colors, flavors or preservatives because your puppy deserves nothing but the best.

Wellness CORE Grain-Free Puppy Chicken & Turkey Recipe

Crafted with protein sourced from real chicken and turkey to provide your puppy with the protein-focused nutrition he needs to grow healthy and strong.

Purina Pro Plan Sensitive Stomach Dry Dog Food

Purina believe that a dog’s life can be lived to the highest level through the power of nutrition. Pushing the boundaries of pet nutrition and pioneering high performance specialized formulas, Purina has developed a reputation for making dog food that consistently wins best in class dog shows.  Top breeders recommend Purina because its unique formulas deliver champions repeatedly.

All dogs can use Purina Pro Plan Sensitive Stomach in all stages.

The number-one ingredient is salmon, a protein source that’s gentle on the digestion. There is no soy, wheat, corn, by-products or artificial flavors or colors, and it has a healthy dose of prebiotic fiber. Purina Pro Plan Sensitive Stomach has a mix of 26% protein, 16% fat, 4% fiber and 12% moisture.

This pet food contains everything your dog needs to thrive. The salmon is nutrient rich food dogs love and the prebiotic fiber formula helps the digestion work to the max by using the bacteria found in your dog’s intestine.

The recipe also includes easily digestible sources of healthy carbohydrates like rice and oatmeal. Rich in omega-3 fatty acids that help support joints and mobility, and omega-6 fatty acids with zinc to nourish your dog’s skin and coat.

To sum up: The primary ingredient is salmon which is a high protein and rich in omega-3 fatty acids to help support your dog’s joint health. There is oatmeal which is easily digestible and supports sensitive stomachs. Added omega-6 fatty acids and zinc will keep your dog’s skin healthy and keep their coat looking shiny and healthy.

Purina Pro Plan Sensitive Stomach is manufactured in the USA and does not use corn, wheat, soy, artificial colors or flavors.

Purina Pro Plan Sensitive Stomach Dry Dog Food

This pet food contains everything your dog needs to thrive. Rich in omega-3 fatty acids to help support your dog’s joint health.

Iams Proactive Health Adult Grain Free Dog Food

Iams has been producing pet food for over 60 years and was founded by Paul F. Iams in 1946. They were the first pet food manufacturer to use animal-based ingredients as the primary source of proteins in their formulas. In the 1970s they came out with a new product line of dry dog food which was a unique innovation at the time. By the mid-90s their product line included natural pet food, high in omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids for healthy skin and coat. By the early 2000s Iams produced their famous premium protection advanced formula with added DHA that helps develop healthy brains in pups.

Iams ProActive Health Sensitive Skin & Stomach Grain Free Dog Food provides your dog with a healthy, well-rounded diet adding no preservatives, corn, wheat, soy, or grains.

High-quality protein from real chicken, plus wholesome veggies and fiber-rich peas enhanced with vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and omegas will keep your dog looking and feeling their best. Great for dogs with sensitive stomachs as there are no grains or artificial preservatives.

It comes in two recipes, either chicken with peas or salmon with lentils, giving your dog a clean source of carbohydrates. The composition is 24% protein, 13% fat, 4% fiber and 10% moisture. Added Omegas help keep your dog’s skin and coat shiny.

To sum up: This is a grain-free kibble specially planned for dogs with sensitive stomachs but also suitable for dogs at all life stages. Chicken is the primary ingredient, with veggies and peas. This formula provides 100% complete and balanced diet for adult dogs and can be used on its own or as a mixer. Extra added vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and omegas help support the overall health and well-being of your pet. There are no grains, corn, wheat or soy, or artificial colors, flavors or preservatives used, making it the best grain free dry food on the market.

Iams Proactive Health Adult Grain Free Dog Food

Provides 100% complete and balanced diet for adult dogs and can be used on its own or as a mixer.

Earthborn Holistic Venture Grain Free Dry Dog Food

Earthborn Holistic Venture Foods was founded in 1926 as the Midwestern Pet Food Company, a family-owned and operated business which is now in its fourth generation. They specialize in nutritional pet foods and oven baked biscuits for your dog. They have four production facilities in the USA, where they source their ingredients from trusted local suppliers. They guarantee that their products are subject to rigorous testing at independent laboratories to ensure quality nutrition and safety. Midwestern Pet Foods has an unblemished reputation in the areas where it operates and all of its ingredients are of the highest quality and naturally preserved.

This product is perfect for dogs with skin or digestive sensitivities. This delicious and exceptionally nutritious turkey meal and butternut squash grain-free dry dog food will have your dog coming back for more because of the irresistible flavors of fresh fowl. With no grain or gluten, corn or soy, fillers or additives it’s a great comfort to know your best friend is eating an exceptional food made with superior ingredients. Meticulously planned to satisfy all of your dog’s nutritional needs, this is the best dry dog food for English Bulldogs.

Earthborn Holistic Venture dry dog foods have been developed to meet the needs of every canine diet, especially those with more sensitive stomachs. Made with a single unique animal protein and only 5 or 6 main ingredients. Earthborn Holistic Venture dry dog food helps support every part of your dog’s body so they can live their life to the fullest.

Made with responsibly sourced turkey from Midwestern family farmers and handpicked Honduran butternut squash. That means it’s packed with protein and fiber, essential vitamins and minerals, and an excellent source of beta-carotene and folate. It contains no fillers, by-products, artificial colors or preservatives. Biodegradable packaging contains up to 30% plant-based plastics and can easily be resealed to keep food fresh.

To sum up: 100% grain-free and gluten-free with limited ingredients providing complete nutrition for dogs of all ages and sizes. Earthborn Holistic Venture is a dry dog food using a good amount of named meats as its main source of animal protein. The company has a stellar reputation and we would have no hesitation in recommending this product because we think it is the best dry dog food for dogs.

Earthborn Holistic Venture Grain Free Dry Dog Food

Developed to meet the needs of every canine diet, especially those with more sensitive stomachs. Helps support every part of your dog’s body.

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Greg Holmes
Greg Holmes resides in Portland, OR with his wife and two daughters, as well as three Havanese dogs. Being an AKC-certified CGC Evaluator and a certified dog trainer, taking care of dogs has been a big part of his life ever since he was young. His love for dogs started when his father took him to the state dog shelter to find his first puppy, which he named Einstein because the dog presented with a very unruly coat when he saw it for the first time. From this experience, he has become a very strong advocate of "adopt don't shop" for aspiring pet parents.

Greg joined the Pupped.com team because he believes that every dog, regardless of breed or age, deserves critical attention and the best dog-related products in the market because man's best friend only deserves, well, the best. Being an active member of the American Kennel Club, he aims to provide up-to-date information to his readers and present factual data about the products available in the market.