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10 Best Dog Foods at Petco in 2023 – Reviews & Top Picks

Krysha Thayer

By Krysha Thayer

Coon Hound Eating

If you’re a regular shopper at Petco and need new dog food for your pup, you’re in the right place. Whether you’ve adopted a new pup, your vet has recommended a new diet, your dog seems bored with its food, or it’s just time to try something new, we have reviewed the 10 best dog foods at Petco below.

Before you read the reviews, keep a few things in mind. Every dog is different and will have different needs. Is your dog energetic or muscular? They may need something with higher protein content. Are they a smaller breed? Be sure to look at the size of the kibble. And while you shouldn’t sacrifice quality, keeping your budget in mind as you shop is okay.

Let’s get started!

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A Quick Look at Our Favorites (2023 Update)

Rating Image Product Details
Best Overall
ORIJEN Original High Protein Fresh & Raw ORIJEN Original High Protein Fresh & Raw
  • High protein and fat content
  • Made in the USA with high-quality ingredients
  • Ideal for all life stages
  • Best Value
    Second place
    Rachel Ray Nutrish with Real Beef Rachel Ray Nutrish with Real Beef
  • An affordable option in large bag sizes
  • Fortified with chicken fat for natural fatty acids
  • US farm-raised beef is the #1 ingredient
  • Premium Choice
    Third place
    The Honest Kitchen Whole Food Clusters The Honest Kitchen Whole Food Clusters
  • Meets strict quality standards, including FDA and USDA
  • Minimally processed to preserve nutrition and taste
  • Improved digestion, energy, and appearance
  • Best for Puppies
    Hill's Science Diet Puppy Food Hill's Science Diet Puppy Food
  • Resealable bag using Velcro, keeping food fresh
  • 100% satisfaction guarantee
  • Very popular, even with picky pups
  • Vet's Choice
    Purina Pro Plan High Protein with Probiotics Purina Pro Plan High Protein with Probiotics
  • Kibble and shredded beef pieces for food variety
  • It contains probiotics for healthy digestion and immune system
  • High protein for working or athletic dogs
  • The 10 Best Dog Foods at Petco

    1. ORIJEN Original High Protein Fresh & Raw – Best Overall

    Orijen Original Grain-Free Dry Dog Food

    Main ingredients: Deboned chicken, deboned turkey, Atlantic flounder, whole eggs
    Protein content: 38%
    Fat content: 18%
    Calories: 3,940 kcal/kg

    Our best overall dog food at Petco is ORIJEN Original Grain-Free High Protein. Poultry and fish make up the first five ingredients, and 85% of the food is derived from animal protein for a protein-packed and highly nutritious meal that dogs love. Much of the protein is raw and freeze-dried to preserve the wholesome vitamins and minerals. If your vet has suggested a grain-free diet, this is a fantastic, high-quality option. Be sure to discuss choosing a grain-free dog food before making the switch, as grains can benefit most dogs.

    Because ORIJEN Original has more protein and includes raw ingredients that aren’t in most other kibbles, it may take longer for your pup to transition. Be sure to take it slow as you move to this new dog food, so their tummy has a chance to adjust. Many dogs love the meaty flavor of this food, but some pickier pups may find it too strong. You may notice the pungent scent as well.

    • High protein and fat content
    • Made in the USA with high-quality ingredients
    • Ideal for all life stages
    • Strong odor from the real-meat ingredients
    • It takes longer to transition from a standard kibble diet

    2. Rachel Ray Nutrish With Real Beef – Best Value

    Rachel Ray Nutrish with Real Beef

    Main ingredients: Beef, beef meal, dried peas, soybean meal, whole ground corn
    Protein content: 26%
    Fat content: 14%
    Calories: 3,492 kcal/kg

    If you have a pup that prefers beef, Rachel Ray Nutrish with Real Beef is the best dog food at Petco for the money. There are no artificial flavors or preservatives, no poultry by-products, and no fillers. However, it has plenty of natural prebiotics that may help your dog digest their meals more effectively and comfortably. Rachel Ray Nutrish is prepared and packaged in the US for the highest quality food products you can offer your pet.

    Even with transitioning, picky eaters may not take to the mostly beef flavor profile of this dog food. Vegetables, like peas, are nutritious but not always appetizing to all pups. It does not have a very high protein-to-calorie ratio, which is suggested for active dogs. However, you can turn to Rachel Ray for dogs with average activity levels that need high-quality, nutritious, and affordable food. Every bag helps support the Rachel Ray Foundation, dedicated to helping animals in need.

    • An affordable option in large bag sizes
    • Fortified with chicken fat for natural fatty acids
    • US farm-raised beef is the #1 ingredient
    • Kibble size may be too big for smaller breeds
    • Picky pups might not like vegetable ingredients

    3. The Honest Kitchen Whole Food Clusters – Premium Choice

    The Honest Kitchen Whole Food Clusters

    Main ingredients: Beef, oats, barley, turkey, beef liver
    Protein content: 23%
    Fat content: 13.5%
    Calories: 3,842 kcal/kg

    While all the top dog food choices on our list are of the highest quality, The Honest Kitchen Whole Food Clusters has gone further to include human-grade ingredients. They take care to include a relatively short list of power-packed ingredients that pass the same strict quality standards as required for your pets and the safety standards you’d expect for the food at your dinner table. The Honest Kitchen uses the process of pressing and dehydrating the ingredients. Reducing the number of steps taken in preparing food helps preserve its taste and nutrition.

    The Beef and Oat Recipe is ideal for adult and senior dogs of any breed. The Honest Kitchen offers a complete lineup that gives your pup a diverse menu and complete, balanced nutrition. Because it has minimally processed meat protein ingredients, it has a vibrant flavor profile. If your dog is not used to savory meals, they may not find it appetizing or take longer to transition.

    • Meets strict quality standards, including FDA and USDA
    • Minimally processed to preserve nutrition and taste
    • Improved digestion, energy, and appearance
    • A more expensive option, especially for larger dogs
    • Kibble can crumble inside the bag during shipping

    4. Hill’s Science Diet Puppy Dry Food – Best for Puppies

    Hill’s Science Diet Puppy

    Main ingredients: Chicken meal, whole grain wheat, cracked pearled barley, whole grain sorghum
    Protein content: 25%
    Fat content: 15%
    Calories: 3,774 kcal/kg

    Hill’s Science Diet Dry Puppy Food, Chicken Meal, and Barley Recipe is specially formulated for growing puppies. Complete and balanced nutrition helps to support a puppy’s fast growth in its first year. Higher levels of DHA, also found in a mother’s milk, stimulate healthy brain and eye development while optimal protein content promotes strong muscle growth. As your puppy grows, veterinarian-approved vitamins and minerals support solid bones and teeth, joint health, and a strong immune system.

    With higher levels of DHA, this high-quality puppy food can also be fed to pregnant dogs to ensure healthy puppies. Hill’s Science Diet is made in the USA and offers a 100% satisfaction guarantee. Discuss your puppy’s diet with their vet or breeder, especially when first adopting them. They may have been given a particular food, and you’ll need to transition to a new brand or formula slowly. You should also discuss the proper age to start transitioning to an adult formula.

    • Resealable bag using Velcro, keeping food fresh
    • 100% satisfaction guarantee
    • Very popular, even with picky pups
    • May cause wet or soft stools
    • More expensive compared to some puppy foods

    5. Purina Pro Plan High Protein with Probiotics – Vet’s Choice

    Purina Pro Plan High Protein Shredded Blend Chicken & Rice Formula with Probiotics

    Main ingredients: beef, rice, whole grain wheat, corn gluten meal, poultry by-product meal
    Protein content: 26%
    Fat content: 16%
    Calories: 3,752 kcal/kg

    Working dogs or those with high energy may benefit from a high-protein diet. Purina Pro Plan High Protein offers just that, along with live probiotics to support healthy digestion and improved immunity. Real beef is the number one ingredient, and you’ll see hard kibble and shredded beef mixed throughout the food. If your pup gets bored of their food often or just loves a protein-packed, real beef dinner, this could be just the meal for them. You can supplement this dry food with the complementary Pro Plan wet food for more variety but the same balanced nutrition.

    In addition to probiotics, this high-protein dry food is fortified with Vitamin A and fatty acids to support a healthy coat. The Purina Pro Plan High Protein formula will have your pup feeling and looking its best. This recipe was previously called “Savor” and was reformulated in 2021. Whole grain wheat and corn gluten meal can be very beneficial for most dogs, but if you suspect a food allergy to either ingredient, be sure to contact your dog’s vet for proper diagnosis and food recommendations.

    • Kibble and shredded beef pieces for food variety
    • It contains probiotics for healthy digestion and the immune system
    • High protein for working or athletic dogs
    • Picky dogs may prefer a different Pro Plan recipe
    • Fewer shredded pieces since the formula change

    6. Blue Buffalo Life Protection Formula Adult Dog Food

    Blue Buffalo Life Protection Formula

    Main ingredients: Deboned beef, chicken meal, brown rice, barley, oatmeal
    Protein content: 24%
    Fat content: 14%
    Calories: 3,602 kcal/kg

    Blue Buffalo Life Protection Formula is made with a well-balanced recipe that includes real meat as the first ingredient and a variety of other high-quality meats, vegetables, and fruits. On top of carefully selected ingredients, the Life Protection Formula is fortified with vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants to help your dog’s body digest effectively, maintain healthy muscle, keep a strong immune response, and produce a beautiful, shiny coat. The recipe was created by animal nutritionists and backed by veterinarians.

    For premium-quality dog food that you can feel good about feeding your pup throughout its adult years, you can turn to Blue Buffalo. No by-products, artificial flavors, or artificial preservatives are used in their recipes, and their products are manufactured in the US. The kibble is a size appropriate for most dog breeds, even small dogs. However, the pieces may be too hard for some, especially those with dental issues.

    • Appeals to most dogs, even picky eaters
    • Designed for overall health and wellbeing
    • Excellent source of antioxidants
    • Kibble can be too hard for some dogs
    • Chicken is a primary ingredient in the Beef and Rice recipe

    7. Nutro Natural Choice Small Bites Dry Food

    Nutro Natural Choice Lamb & Brown Rice Small Bites

    Main ingredients: Deboned lamb, chicken meal, brewers rice, whole grain brown rice
    Protein content: 22%
    Fat content: 14%
    Calories: 3,631 kcal/kg

    Nutro Natural Choice Small Bites Dry Food is a full lineup of premium dog foods with recipes that focus on wholesome ingredients that support a healthy pup. It all starts with healthy digestion with natural fiber. If your dog is prone to loose stools, it may benefit from a diet with more fiber, such as the Lamb & Brown Rice recipe. Pasture-fed lamb is the number one ingredient for the high-quality source of protein that your dog needs to maintain strong muscles and energy levels as they run and play.

    Smaller dogs, or pups that prefer smaller kibble, will enjoy the tiny pieces. It still has the same crunch as other Nutro Natural Choice foods and the same great lamb and brown rice recipe they love in smaller pieces that are easier to chew.

    • High in natural fiber to combat loose stools
    • Supports immune function with antioxidants
    • Small bite kibble for small breeds
    • The formula may have been updated with the new packaging
    • Not as popular with picky pups

    8. Solid Gold Hund N Flocken Dry Dog Food

    Solid Gold Hund N Flocken

    Main ingredients: Lamb, lamb meal, brown rice, pearled barley, oatmeal
    Protein content: 22%
    Fat content: 10%
    Calories: 3,410 kcal/kg

    With real lamb as the first ingredient, Solid Gold Hund N Flocken offers plenty of protein for a healthy pup. However, it’s the nutrient-rich whole grains and a long list of superfoods like eggs, carrots, and pumpkin, that not only meet but exceed the nutritional needs of your adult dog. This brand is not one of the most well-known on the shelf but has been around since the 1970s, offering superior nutrition and the highest quality natural ingredients in holistic and well-balanced dog food recipes.

    Living probiotics support healthy digestion, especially for dogs with sensitive tummies, and omega fatty acids help absorb the many vitamins and minerals in the Solid Gold Hund N Flocken recipe. This recipe is formulated without potatoes for those with a food allergy. Solid Gold foods are produced in the USA to strict quality standards and are backed by a 100% satisfaction guarantee. Because Solid Gold is not one of the more prominent brands, it can be somewhat challenging to find, but Petco regularly carries it.

    • Formulated without potatoes for dogs with allergies
    • Includes a long list of high-quality superfoods
    • Ideal for pups with sensitive tummies
    • Sometimes difficult to find
    • Not as appetizing for picky eaters

    9. Merrick Classic Healthy Grains Dry Dog Food

    Merrick Classic Healthy Grains

    Main ingredients: Deboned beef, pork meal, brown rice, barley, oatmeal
    Protein content: 26%
    Fat content: 15%
    Calories: 3,648 kcal/kg

    Merrick Classic Healthy Grains, Real Beef, and Brown Rice Recipe contain many healthy grains that dogs can use to feel their best every day. Quinoa, considered an ancient grain, is high in iron and magnesium. It is also an excellent source of fiber. Flaxseed, chia, and other grains offer unique benefits, including optimal nutrition for overall wellness plus added glucosamine for joint support. This is especially beneficial for large breeds or those prone to hip and joint problems. With high-quality protein for muscle health and omega-fatty acids for a healthy coat, your dog will look as healthy as they feel.

    Merrick offers a complementary lineup of wet food to add variety to your pup’s diet and treats, including those designed for dental health. All their products are produced in the USA, with strict quality standards for their ingredients and production methods. The kibble is on the smaller side but is ideal for most breed sizes, including larger dogs. Because the food includes more grains and vegetable ingredients, it may take longer to transition.

    • Smaller-sized kibble is perfect for most breeds
    • A variety of grains offer optimal nutrition
    • Designed for hip and joint support
    • Picky pups may not like the unique ingredient profile
    • The previous formula contained peas

    10. Acana Wholesome Grains Sea-to-Stream Dry Food

    Acana Wholesome Grains Sea to Stream

    Main ingredients: Whole Atlantic herring, whole mackerel, whole catfish, herring meal, mackerel meal
    Protein content: 31%
    Fat content: 17%
    Calories: 3,370 kcal/kg

    For a high-protein, seafood-based option, you can turn to Acana Wholesome Grains Sea to Stream Dry Food. A high-protein diet is often recommended for very active or muscular dogs. With three types of raw fish as the first ingredients, this recipe’s protein comes straight from the source. Fish are also high in omega fatty acids, which aid digestion, are great for healthy skin and coat, and help support immune function. Wholesome grains support a well-balanced diet with additional nutrition and fiber for optimal digestion. Vegetables and fruits are also included to provide essential vitamins and minerals.

    Natural probiotics, high levels of omega fatty acids, and supportive antioxidants work together to keep your pup feeling its best. Acana’s kitchens are located in Kentucky and work closely with trusted farmers and fishers to ensure their ingredients are of the highest quality. While fish is highly nutritious, not every dog finds it appetizing.

    • High-protein food ideal for working or athletic dogs
    • Thoughtfully sourced ingredients from a trusted network
    • More nutritious grains like millet and sorghum
    • Not every dog enjoys the taste of fish
    • Has a strong smell

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    Buyer’s Guide: How to Select the Best Dog Food at Petco

    Do you have some questions as you shop for the best dog foods at Petco? That’s okay! Most people do, so let’s try to answer some of the most common questions we hear.

    Does the age of my dog matter when choosing dog food?

    Yes! Dog foods are specially formulated for the age of your dog. For example, Hill’s Science Diet Puppy formula reviewed above contains higher amounts of DHA. DHA is found in a mother’s milk and helps puppies grow strong physically as well as supporting healthy brain and eye development. Once they reach adulthood, they no longer need as much DHA, and it’s safe to transition to a food formulated for adult dogs or “all life stages.” Similarly, a senior dogs will need food that helps support their joint and brain health as they age.

    If you aren’t sure when it’s time for your pet to graduate to the next step in nutrition, talk to your vet. They will keep your dog’s breed and overall health in mind when deciding the best diet.

    How much protein does my dog need?

    A high-protein diet is recommended for muscular breeds, athletic canines, and working dogs. If your pet is energetic and seems to eat quite a bit, a high-protein diet with more healthy fats and calories may keep them satisfied longer. However, too much protein for a dog that doesn’t get enough exercise can lead to weight gain.

    When deciding on new dog food, it’s essential to consider the breed, age, and activity level.

    Is a grain-free diet better for my dog?

    No, not necessarily. Not all dogs require a grain-free diet, and some dogs benefit from food that contains more grains or certain types of grains. If your pet isn’t thriving on its current diet, you may want to try the elimination diet. Be sure to discuss your concerns about your dog’s diet with your vet and get their approval and guidance before choosing to exclude certain foods. However, this can help determine if a grain-free diet would be beneficial.

    dog eating from bowl in kitchen
    Image Credit: Pixel-Shot, Shutterstock

    How do I know if my dog has a food allergy?

    Food allergies can cause many symptoms that may be overlooked as something completely different. If you’ve changed your pet’s food in the last several weeks or months and they’ve started experiencing symptoms like itching or infections, try transitioning to a different food to see if symptoms improve. Your vet or veterinary nutritionist can order lab tests to confirm a food allergy or intolerance.

    How much should I feed my dog? How often should I feed them?

    The feeding instructions for each dog food offer a rough estimate when feeding your pup. However, these instructions are only a guide. If you find that your dog doesn’t finish all of its food but seems happy and healthy, it may just be full. If they are still hungry after their meal, they may need additional calories than the food provides, so feeding a little extra may be necessary. You may also need to adjust the feeding amounts if you offer wet food or treats throughout the day. According to the American Kennel Club (AKC), adult dogs should be fed twice daily.

    What is diet rotation? Should I change my dog’s food often?

    Every dog food offers slightly different nutrition. Some dog owners prefer to switch up their dog’s diet every so often so they can benefit from the nutritional advantages of another formula or brand for a while and then switch again. Remember that a picky dog may find a food they like and not want to switch, while another dog may get bored of their food and love trying something new. When changing foods, you’ll need to transition slowly to prevent an upset stomach.

    How do I transition my dog to a new food?

    The new food may have a suggested transition timeline from 7 days to 2 weeks. The AKC recommends mixing 25% of the new food with 75% of the previous food for a few days, then 50% of each. After a few more days, you can transition to a mix of 75% of the new food and 25% of the old, and eventually to a diet consisting of only the new food. This is only a guideline, however. If you notice your pup has an upset tummy, it’s okay to return to a previous mix or give them more time to adjust.

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    We hope you found these reviews helpful as you shop for your pet. Remember, it’s all about their health and wellness! For the best overall dog food at Petco, check out ORIJEN Original for active pups. For the best dog food at Petco for the money, go with Rachel Ray Nutrish. It features real beef as the #1 ingredient. The Honest Kitchen Whole Food Clusters is our premium choice, while Hill’s Science Diet Chicken Meal & Barley Recipe is great for puppies. Our vet’s choice is Purina Pro Plan High Protein with Probiotics.

    See also: Petco Review 2022- Info, Pros, Cons, & FAQ

    Featured Image Credit: SillyDogPhotos, Shutterstock

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