If you love your furry friend and you notice that they’ve become very reluctant in eating their food that you’ve put into their bowl, it’s natural to start becoming worried.
This has been a common concern and frustration experienced by most dog owners. Just like humans, dogs have different tastes. There are flavor or texture that appeals to them, as well as those that may not appeal to them.
While some dogs don’t seem to care either way and will eat just about anything, some dogs are highly sensitive to certain aromas. This has made dog owners commonly ask about what is the best tasting dog food.
In this article, we offer our review of some of the best tasting dog foods (dry food, grain-free, canned…) that will surely please even the pickiest eaters! Read on to find out more.
What Makes An Appetizing/Good Tasting Food?
It is important to note the things that dogs tend to find tasty when searching for new food. Even though you’ll never know if your dog finds a given food palatable until you try it, but you can improve your chances of hitting on a winning recipe by keeping a few things in mind.
1. Protein Content
A dog’s body needs protein to function properly, so you want to double-check that the dog food that you are considering contains enough of it. You want to pay special attention to the first and second ingredients since a high-quality kibble should have an identified meat product listed first, and if possible also second.
Look for named meats like lamb, beef, chicken, turkey, and salmon, since these are considered good sources of protein for a dog. Meat meals, like the chicken meal and fish meal, are also considered protein-rich ingredients, but you should stay away from anything that says “by-products” since there is no guarantee for these containing enough quality protein.
Protein directly affects your dog’s energy level and general health, and since canines are meat eaters – a high meat content is among the best motivations a dog can get when it comes to eating. If the kibble has enough real meat, your dog will be able to taste it (and smell it).
2. Natural vs. Artificial Flavor
You will agree with me that there is a big difference in a product tasting like for example beef, and a product actually containing beef.
Many low-quality products use artificial flavors to give their kibble an appealing taste, even though it may not actually contain enough (or any) if the advertised ingredient. It is necessary to always check the ingredient list, and make sure that the flavors announced on the bag come from a quality source, and that the product you choose to buy is free from artificial flavors.
Dogs are intelligent animals, and if your pup isn’t eating, it is possible that they have seen through the marketing tricks and the artificial flavor added to trick both dogs and owners into thinking that a food is better than it is.
Natural flavors from real quality ingredients are what you should want for your fussy eater, and while that does not mean that it should be dog food that tastes like human food – it should at least contain what it advertises.
3. Digestive Aid
Sometimes, a stomach issue could be the reason why your dog seems so reluctant to eat. Perhaps there is something in his or her food that upsets the stomach – causing discomfort – and who wants to eat when they are not feeling well?
If your veterinarian has ruled out any serious issues, it could be worth a shot to try a limited ingredient kibble; possibly without chicken, egg and dairy, which are known to irritate the stomach lining of some dogs, or even cause allergies, to see if you notice any difference in their general appetite.
Fiber is great for digestion and can be found in ingredients such as sweet potato, lentils, and other fruits, vegetables and legumes. Many of these natural ingredients are also rich in vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, which all help the canine body to stay strong and healthy, and function as it was meant to function.
How To Choose the Best Tasting Dog Food?
When looking for food for your dog, especially for picky eaters – the flavor is the main aspect to look at. But, you don’t want to have to compromise on quality, so let’s have a look at what you should keep in mind when trying to find a delicious kibble or wet food, that is also good enough to provide your fur bestie with the proper nutrients for a long and healthy life.
1. Real Meat
Dogs may be omnivores in the technical sense of the word, but their most recent ancestors – and all their contemporaneous cousins and nieces – subsist on a meat-based diet.
Also, being naturally carnivorous animals, so it isn’t surprising that they find the taste of meat appealing. Sure, they’ll slurp up edible fruit, tubers, vegetables, and roots as offered by the environment, but the bulk of their calories come from meat. Whether it’s poultry, fish, or meat, a meat-based meal is usually tastier than one with low meat content or poor-quality meat.
Given all these, dogs, especially the picky ones usually find foods with plenty of high-quality meat protein sources to be tastier than those relying on lesser meat-meals and substandard meats.
If you have had the experience of being raised on food that was not only inherently fatty but cooked in a boiling bath of supplemental fat, you will get this. Fat makes things taste better.
Technically, fats and oils are different things (the former is solid at room temperature and comes from animals, the latter is liquid at room temperature and comes from plants), but dogs tend to appreciate both (although animal fats are preferred).
Aim for foods with a moderate amount of fat content in your dog’s food, but make sure most of it comes from unsaturated sources, like fish oil. Omega-3 is also necessary for maintaining a shiny coat, healthy skin, and promoting better brain functioning.
3. Fruits and Veggies
Dogs love the sweet taste of fruits, so it’s very likely that your pup will prefer food that includes at least a few of them. Besides being delicious, fruits are also a quality source of vitamins, which can contribute to your dog’s health.
On the other hand, some even love the taste of really bitter vegetables (many dogs love Brussel sprouts, spinach, and broccoli, for example). Foods containing these ingredients and flavors often appeal to picky dogs more than foods lacking them.
These types of ingredients also contribute many vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, which have obvious health benefits.
4. Wet vs Dry Food
First of all, the type of dog food isn’t decisive, but rather the content. This means that both wet and dry food can provide your dog with all-important nutrients, vitamins, and minerals, as long as the ingredients are of high quality and the composition is right.
Both types of dog food have their advantages and disadvantages, so it isn’t a question of right or wrong, but rather a personal choice and requirements that will determine which dog food you choose in the end.
Most dogs would probably opt for wet food if they could choose themselves, since wet food, more intense in smell and taste, simply tastes better to them. Because of wet dog food consistency and smell, wet dog food is more palatable for dogs. It’s also less processed, which means that it more closely resembles proteins in their natural state.
5. Real vs. Artificial Flavors
Your pup will agree with me that real chicken tastes better than artificially enhanced chicken by-product (which is fine as a supplement, but not a primary protein).
Also, foods that feature premium proteins typically taste better and appeal much more to picky eaters than their economic and artificially flavored counterparts.
You bet that healthy and happy dogs will treat even the driest piece of over-cooked chicken as though it was cooked by Gordon Ramsay.
Best Tasting Dog Food Reviews
1. Blue Buffalo Wilderness High Protein Grain Free, Natural Adult Dry Dog Food
One all-natural and grain-free kibble that bursts with flavor – a flavor that few dogs can resist, no matter how fussy they usually are at mealtime is the Blue Buffalo Wilderness High Protein Grain Free, Natural Adult Dry Dog Food.
It features protein from deboned salmon, fish meal and chicken meal; making it a tasty dog food for picky eaters that fulfills their daily energy needs. It contains wholesome vegetables to provide vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, and there are no artificial flavors, colors or preservatives.
This gives the kibble a rich taste which a regular grocery store brand can never compare to. Also, the LifeSource Bits that Blue Buffalo mixes in with their regular kibble provides your fussy pup with all the nutrients he or she needs to support immune system health, life stage requirements, healthy oxidative balance; generally to stay healthy and strong.
It contains essential vitamins and minerals such as calcium and phosphorus to help promote strong bones and teeth, glucosamine helps support joint function and mobility and Omega 3 & 6 fatty acids helps promote a shiny coat and healthy skin.
|It contains Omega 3 and 6 for a healthy coat||It may be too high in protein and fat for less active dogs|
|It features LifeSource Bits infused with vitamins|
|It features real and fresh meat|
|It’s high in protein content and from quality sources|
|It is suited for dogs prone to joint diseases|
2. The Honest Kitchen Human Grade Dehydrated Organic Grain Dog Food
While it may be a new and revolutionary dog food (and human food!), the Honest Kitchen Human Grade Dehydrated Organic Grain Dog Food is as nutritious and tasty as the other foods on this list but in a dehydrated form.
This means you need to add a little water to the formula before you feed it to your pup. This is a complete diet pet meal and will meet the needs of picky ruffs, puppies, and even pregnant dogs. The recipe is created with free-range chicken, plus primary produce from the garden.
These ingredients combined with organic whole grain barley is what makes each bite a delicious and tasty treat. Because real lean meats, fruits, and veggies are used, which means mixture loaded with everything your pet needs in the diet.
You should adjust the amount of water added to see if your dog likes it soupy or more textured. It’s even graded 100% for human consumption. You can rest assured that it won’t trigger any itch on their skin and they won’t get upset stomachs.
|It is 100% human-grade||It may take for the pup to adjust to dehydrated foods|
|It is budget-friendly|
|It is organic, all-natural, nutritionally complete and balanced|
|Its meat is hormone and antibiotic-free|
|It contains no additives, poultry by-products, preservatives or GMOs|
3. Wellness Core Natural Grain-Free Dry Dog Food Original Turkey & Chicken
Another top-rated dog food that most dogs will enjoy is the Wellness Core Natural Grain-Free Dry Dog Food. There’s no denying that when it comes to high-quality dog food, they’re top on the list.
It’s worth noting that it comes in both standard, puppy, weight management, and large breed formulas, making your life easy if you’re shopping for a dog in a particular life stage.
Wellness CORE Natural Grain-Free Dry Dog Food Original Recipe is one dog food made with quality natural ingredients that are meant to optimize your dog’s health. Perhaps one of its main selling points is its grain-free formula.
This delicious dry food contains antioxidants, probiotics, vitamins and minerals including fish and flax omega blend. Make certain your dog is receiving a balanced diet as well as flavor he will love.
It uses turkey and chicken as the primary protein sources (although there’s an alternative fish-based option available), and it contains plenty of high-quality meat along with real vegetables to cover all your bases and give you a dog food blend that any pooch is likely to enjoy.
The product is made only in the USA for further peace of mind, and it’s also backed by the Wellness Guarantee. Importantly, the blend doesn’t use any low-grade additives, nor will you find any meat by-products, soy, corn, wheat, or anything artificial – so it’s generally a healthy option that won’t put off a picky eater.
|It contains premium quality ingredients||It is higher priced|
|It is 100% grain-free formulation|
|It doesn’t have any artificial ingredient or preservatives|
|It is high in protein|
|It contains quality carbohydrates|
4. Rachael Ray Nutrish Zero Grain Dry Dog Food, Poultry Flavors, Grain-Free
You may have known Rachael Ray as a talk show host and famous chef but she is also an animal lover. She has gone as far as developing a pet food called Rachael Ray Nutrish Zero Grain Dry Dog Food.
This food uses ingredients from farms in the United States and is one of the most delicious dry dog foods. Nutrish is made from 100% protein such as farm-raised chicken. This gives Nutrish a flavorful, meaty taste that your dog will love.
Additionally, there are meat fats added for a natural, more intense extra flavor. Plus, each variety has veggies, like carrots and peas, included in the food. These veggies are in the canine cuisine to meet the plant’s based tastes which dogs who are picky enjoy.
This tasty dog food comes in three flavor presentations, and kibble is mixed with dried fruit and vegetables that you can actually see. This is a dog delight that picky dogs will run to their dish because Nutrish is a natural grain-free and natural with quality ingredients and intense flavors food. It doesn’t have fillers and is gluten-free without colors, artificial flavors or preservatives that are artificial.
This natural pet food has chelated minerals and added vitamin for your four-legged companion’s good health. To sum up, this formula uses all-natural ingredients that will awake taste buds in your pet.
|It is all-natural with vitamins and minerals||It contains a moderately high glycemic ingredient|
|It contains high meat content and quality ingredients|
|It has no artificial preservatives, flavors or colors|
5. Blue Buffalo Freedom Grain Free Natural Adult Dry Dog Food, Chicken 24-lb
If what you desire for dog food is a delicious, 100% grain-free formula that contains no gluten, you should consider the Blue Buffalo Freedom Grain Free Natural Adult Dry Dog Food.
BLUE Freedom dog food is a product of the Blue Buffalo company. Based in the United States, Blue Buffalo makes premium-quality pet foods featuring real meat, fruit, and vegetables. BLUE Freedom dog food recipes feature high-quality real meat with no chicken (or poultry) by-product meals.
This is a perfect way to set your dog free from grains with this tasty, satisfying diet. This recipe starts with real beef as the first ingredient and features the high-quality ingredients you’ll feel good about feeding your best friend without the grains that contain gluten. It is formulated to meet the nutritional requirements of adult dogs to help provide energy for an active life. Plus, it contains omega 3 & 6 fatty acids to support skin and coat health.
It also features BLUE’s exclusive LifeSource Bits – a precise blend of antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals carefully selected by holistic veterinarians and animal nutritionists to support immune system health, life stage requirements, and a healthy oxidative balance.
|It is recommended for active dogs||It is not suited for dogs with weight problems|
|It contains zero grain content|
|It is perfect for dogs susceptible to joint issues|
Final Words On Best Tasting Dog Food
There you have it. Now you should no longer be confused with the tons of options out there for best tasting dog food available today. The above list of products and guide will guide you in making a perfect choice.
If you had to choose from the products listed, my top pick would go to the Blue Buffalo Wilderness High Protein Grain Free, Natural Adult Dry Dog Food.
This is one food made with unique Lifesource Bits; a precise blend of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants created by veterinarians and animal nutritionists.
With recipes for all tastes and diets, including limited ingredient diets, high protein, grain-free, wholesome grains, and exotic proteins, this product starts with real meat and ends with good health.
It features real chicken to help build and maintain lean muscle mass. This is one recipe that is guaranteed to satisfy your dog’s natural love for meat and good tasting food.
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