CHOICE membership

Where are clear comparisons of brand dog food -wet or dry food?

I found a comparison of wet cat food but nothing for dogs. Am I missing it somewhere? I don’t want general information - I want actual comparisons of brands. I have checked out dust busters, fridges, computers etc etc but I only buy them once in a long while. Dog food is eaten by my dogs each day. I need a comparison please - can be awfully pricey stuff!! Many thanks.

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The only germane Choice article I could find is


and the more salient part are the comments, all asking for a comparison report.

and this generalised on

and a few others I think you long ago found based on your having found the wet cat food review.

What beyond a lab report on nutrition would you envisage? Anything? BTW, I am assigning your topic to the Request-a-Test where it gets visible to more related Choice staff.

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Thanks for raising this @Chantelle, I’ll pass it onto our product testers.

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Thanks so much Brendan! I guess comparisons of meat protein and any other major ingredients’ percentages. Prices per 100 gms. Also a mix of vet clinic sales brands, premium brands, wholistic - and even some homemade high percentage meat ones from Choice members! That would be most interesting!! Thanks for passing this on! Much appreciated! :blush::clap::clap:

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Hi Chantelle,
In the interest of full disclosure I work in the petcare industry.

I find when comparing foods a straight review can be hard to create. After all every animal has different needs and different shoppers value wildly different things. I wrote a bit of a summary on how to choose a safe pet food here.

Personally I found the review of wet cat food Choice wrote of minimal value. When I look at pet foods I usually look for what will give the most benefit to my pets. The Choice review only tested whether cat foods met the minimum requirements to be a cat food, and whether they were accurately labeled. It’s very hard to score them in numbers like that.

The reality is no one pet food will be the ‘best,’ so my tips for getting something that fits your needs are:

  • Get advice from someone specialised in the area, such as your vet or a pet supply shop you trust. Or check out my suggestions in the above thread
  • It’s normally pointless trying to compare every food on the market, lots offer very similar ranges. Maybe just compare the ones at your supermarket/pet supply store/online store you prefer.
  • Narrow down the options by thinking about whether you value options such as Australian Made, or options that claim to be ‘natural.’ Once again a good advisor should be able to point you in the right direction.
  • All foods you pick should be marked as ‘AAFCO Certified.’ This means they include the basic nutrients required for an animal to live. Does that mean they’re the only nutrients? Not at all. Lots of premium foods include things such as fish oils that are known to be beneficial (and may be a minimum requirement for animals with special needs). Either research these ingredients yourself or talk to an expert about what your animal may require

Hope this helps. If you have any further questions ask them in the thread I linked above. The industry is notoriously confusing to navigate and I enjoy giving any advice I can.

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There’s an Australian website called petfoodreviews.com.au that compares dog and cat foods

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I can get you a Lab report on dog food…

:joy:

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Thank you for the offer of a lab(rador) test. I am quite confident every brand would pass - so long as there was lots of it!! :rofl:

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Thank you for this information and taking the time to put it up, I appreciate your concern and advice.

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Damnation. They don’t review wet animal foods. Only the dry stuff and not really any premium brands :frowning:

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Pet Food Reviews is a decent site. Keep in mind though everyone has their own opinions, and everyone’s pet has different needs. Pet Food Reviews tends to favour ‘Natural’ foods over others, which is good if you also prefer that. Otherwise it may lead you to paying for options you may not want though, so just make sure you’re aware of that preference.

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An observation from the olden days. My grandparents used to train and race grey hounds. In their later years they had a cocker spaniel. I don’t recollect there being any form of commercial tinned or dry dog food in the house.

What’s changed, and is it that difficult, or was it difficult to feed a dog adequately? I understand the greyhounds may have had some form of supplement, legal and ethical for the day.

Is branded commercial pet food more a convenience than a necessity?

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That was why, just for interest, I suggested the idea that perhaps some of the Choice folk may check out some recipes for home made dog foods for various breeds and ages and any allergies etc to make their own dog food. feed for about a month and report back re dog’s reaction, cost per 100 gms (or cup). That may be a really interesting test - and help with budgets at this difficut economic time for so many folk. Thanks to everyone for your interest! Apparently 38% of Aussie households have at least one dog. That is no small minority so this topic would interest a lot of people.

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A common question. The answer is simple. Dogs (much like humans) simply didn’t get fed well in a lot of cases. Those with dietary complications even more so. Both in humans and pets, we often remember things better than they were. Greyhounds that you mentioned are massively susceptible to arthritis and joint issues that frequently were (and still are) untreated.

Having said that, some specific breeds have developed further requirements as selective breeding has created issues.

This would be better covered by a vet or animal nutritionist (and as far as I’m aware none of the Choice staff are). The majority of those two professions don’t suggest home cooked pet food anyway (as the minimum vitamin and mineral content formulated by the AAFCO is not easily recreated at home). I would argue once those vitamins and minerals are sourced it is probably more expensive than a cheap commercial food too.

As usual in the interest of full disclosure I work in the petcare industry

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I have yet to find a research report that in my view has included the most important question; Is it palatable, does your cat or dog eat the food enthusiastically?

or pick at it, or even leave it? The Researchers have cost me a fortune, because I have taken their advice. When Rosie looks at me and her eyes say; you want me to eat this? Your heart sinks as your wallet gets lighter!

Once upon a time some Pet Stores allowed you a small sample of their dry food, for some reason that stopped? Some pet shops will allow you to return dry food if your dog won’t eat it? You cannot take the bag back almost empty, but they allow you to have this trial 3 times, which is very good. This is 2 large pet shop chains in Victoria, For me It’s so embarrassing- I tried two lots of dried foodI once, but couldn’t continue returning to the Store (that’s just me) I don’t know If they offer the same for cats? It’s also a good question for the pet food manufacturers; why can’t they turn out mini tins and packets of their food for trial purposes- to be purchased of course. They must be making a fortune, so they could be customer friendly, it would be so helpful? Perhaps some chef or cook could do some research and come up with some reasonably quick and simple menus ?

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I’ve seen one brand try this. They stopped within a year because so few people bought the mini bags. Same problem with free samples. There are so many brands and variants That it winds up being impossible.

My advice would be shop around retailers, some have more generous refund policies than others if your pet doesn’t like it. Also ask staff which ones get returned the most.

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Well not necessarily!!
I have two rescue dogs, one giant I have no idea what dog with the brain of a gnat, and one lab X staffy who has all the worst elements of both breeds.
Generally, they WILL eat anything… except Aldi’s Julius dry food. They nearly starved themselves for a couple of days because they didn’t want to eat it. It was equal parts amusing and concerning! (No cruelty, we only left it breakfast, dinner, breakfast untouched, and they do also get leftover fruit and veg).

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The best analysis/review of dog food I have found is done by the 'Whole Dog Journal" in the US. Of course, the majority of foods they review are in the US and many not available here, but a number of the foods they include are available here in Oz. I have suggested on a number occasions that Choice should look at their methodology for rating foods, and consider producing something similar here in Australia. I think their methodology is very good. Given the size of the industry and the number of dog owners, it would be well worth choice’s effort…they could possibly even sell the review as a separate product!!!

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