Selecting what food to feed your puppy/adult dog is an important decision to make. Do you go with wet food or dry food? Should you make the food at home? Home cooked meals are usually the best since you get to control the ingredients and avoid harmful preservatives, fillers and artificial stuff which could harm your dog. However, not everyone has the time to cook meals for their furry kids. Thankfully, for busy pet parents, there is always commercial dog food which provides the right nourishment and usually adheres to vet recommended guidelines. If you are wondering which is the best canned dog food for sensitive stomachs and best wet food to mix with the dry food, this guide can help you.
Dry versus wet food: Know the differences
- Wet food uses fewer preservatives thanks to air tight packaging. This however leads to quick spoiling so you should not keep it open for too long and must aim to finish it off quickly. Wet is usually sold in cans, sealed pouches so you can take the requisite quantity and refrigerate the leftover.
- Dry dog food is less palatable than soft or moist canned food. Commercial dry dog foods contain large number of preservatives to prevent it from spoiling easily.
- Dry dog food is often cheaper.
- The advantage of dry dog food over moist food is that the hard kibbles provide abrasion which can help control plaque and tartar. This can keep pet’s gums and teeth healthy.
- Good quality wet or canned food is higher in protein and lower in carbohydrates.
- Harsh drying processes used in dry dog food manufacture can reduce the nutrition as well as digestibility in them.
- Dry dog food has lower quantity of omega 3 essential fatty acids.
Ingredients in best wet food for small breeds
When looking for best soft dry dog food or canned wet food to mix with dry food, look for high protein, moderate fat and low carbohydrate foods. The food should contain fresh, organic ingredients and ranch or pasture raised animal meat, free run chicken and whole eggs from local prairie farms. The food should be tested and recommended by vets as being highly digestible and preferably be free from artificial flavors, preservatives and by products.
Worst wet dog food ingredients to avoid
If you are looking for best canned food for sensitive stomach, avoid the following ingredients:
- Beef and bone meal-These are cheap protein sources. They are the parts that remain after removing quality meat cuts for humans.
- Meat by products- These are also cheap protein sources. They can include bones, blood, feathers, legs, claws and feet; basically all parts that are not fit for humans. Many of these parts come from dead, diseased or dying animals and birds. Also, many parts come from rats, horses, road-kill animals, goats and pigs.
- Beef tallow-This is found in low quality dog food and the worst wet dog food.
- Corn-This is one of the first ingredients listed in cheap dry and wet dog foods.
- Corn/wheat gluten binders-This is the remainder of the corn used for binding the kibble. It can lead to digestive disturbance in dogs with gluten sensitivity.
- Soy and wheat flours- These can lead to allergies in certain breeds and can cause dull coat, hot spots, paw licking and rashes.
- Brewer’s rice- this is a controversial element in dog foods. Some premium foods contain it. Many experts believe that it is cheap substitute for whole grain rice. Others believe that it is healthy for dogs.
- Sugar- this is present in the form of molasses or corn syrup. Food companies add it to make their food palatable for pets. It can lead to obesity, tooth decay and even allergies in pets.
Best wet dog food brands
According to wet dog food ratings, following are the best wet dog food brands for small breed dogs:
1. Cesar Canine Cuisine
- This soft wet dog food brand is suitable for all breeds and especially for smaller dog breeds.
- It contains vitamins and minerals and is balanced nutrition.
- Comes in convenient sealed trays for freshness.
- Made with real poultry.
- Fussy dogs love it.
- You can serve it alone or with kibble.
- Made in USA.
Cons- Contains chunks which can cause smaller dogs to choke.
2. Rachel Ray Nutrish Wet Food Grain Free
Many a dog food advisor recommends this brand of wet dog food.
- This is a premium wet dog food brand that does not contain soy, wheat or fillers as well as artificial colors, preservatives or meat by products.
- Rachel Ray herself has created these recipes using fresh, organic fruits, veggies and real meat.
- Comes in 3 different flavors to satisfy the pickiest of eater.
- Portion of the proceeds from sales of this wet dog food also support Rachel’s animal rescue organization.
Cons- The product is made in Thailand and not in USA. The dried up chunks may be harder to digest for some dogs. Many people also complained that the food was mostly gravy and there was no real meat/vegetables seen in it.
3. Hill’s Science Diet Small and Toy Breed Wet Food
Best puppy and adult food for small breeds, Hill’s Science based dog foods provide complete nourishment to pets.
- Ideal for dogs who have lost their teeth due to old age.
- Contains easy to digest protein and gentle fiber.
- Ideal for mixing with dry food.
- Manufactured in USA
- Vet recommended
Cons– Expensive than most brands.
4. Purina Beneful Adult Wet Dog Food
- Made in the USA with real meat.
- Tubs are microwaveable
Cons– Contains wheat gluten. This food is known to have made some dogs sick with vomiting and diarrhea. There are lawsuits pending against it.
5. Blue Buffalo Wilderness Small Breed Wet Canned Dog Food
- Low carb, high protein food made with real meat and no wheat
- Great taste, unique recipes and great to top dry food with.
- Ideal for sensitive stomachs.
Cons- As with many dog foods, some pets did not like the taste.
When it comes to choosing the best wet dog food, always read food labels. Introduce new food to your pet slowly. Make sure s/he adjusts to it completely before making a complete switch.