8 Worst Foods You Can Feed Your Dog

 

Do you know what food is really harmful for your dog?  Probably the stuff you're feeding her now.  How do I know?  Because the worst dog foods are the most popular ones on the market.  They're advertised on TV and they're all over supermarket and pharmacy shelves.  Some of them are even for sale in your vet's office! I can't blame you for buying these foods, they've been foisted on you; they're everwhere you look!  But, really, you should avoid them, because...

I know you want to keep your dog healthy!  To do that, it is important to give him the diet closest to that of his ancestral wild dogs... meat or fish.  Ideally, his food should contain at least 75 percent protein from real meat or fish and 25 percent real vegetable and fruit products. It is important to feed him food that is safe for human consumption too.  For more information on the best dog foods, see my recent blog on the 5 Best Dog Foods.

But, whatever you do, stay away from dog foods that don't contain meat, but meat by-products.  By-products can mean any part of an animal except meat; they are waste products, and may not even contain any protein. Stay away from corn, or any type of grain product, especially flour; dogs are generally allergic to these products. Stay away from preservatives, chemicals, artificial flavors and colorants. And stay away from menadione, a synthetic version of vitamin K that has not been approved for long term use.

These 8 dry dog food brands are not a comprehensive list of foods that are simply horrible for your dog; they are just some of the most popular brands of dog food that are bad for your dog.  The list is instructive though, as it includes the food's ingredients, which you should memorize as stuff to avoid!

So here are my picks for 8 Worst Dog Foods:

1.  Alpo Dog Food

Alpo Dog FoodAlpo Dog Food

Why is Alpo Dog Food bad for your dog? The ingredients list are: ground yellow corn, corn germ meal, meat and bone meal (source of pork flavor), soybean meal, beef tallow preserved with mixed-tocopherols (form of Vitamin E), egg and chicken flavor, corn gluten meal, animal digest, salt, dried peas, potassium chloride, natural steak flavor, natural grill flavor, choline chloride, added color (red 40, yellow 5, blue 2), zinc sulfate, ferrous sulfate, DL-Methionine, Vitamin E supplement, manganese sulfate, niacin, Vitamin A supplement, calcium carbonate, copper sulfate, calcium pantothenate, garlic oil, pyridoxine hydrochloride, Vitamin B-12 supplement, thiamine mononitrate, Vitamin D-3 supplement, riboflavin supplement, calcium iodate, menadione sodium bisulfite complex (source of Vitamin K activity), folic acid, biotin, sodium selenite.
 



2.  Beneful Dog Food

 

Beneful Dog FoodBeneful Dog Food

Why is Beneful Dog Food a bad dog food option? The ingredients are: Ground yellow corn, chicken by-product meal, corn gluten meal, whole wheat flour, animal fat preserved with mixed-tocopherols (form of Vitamin E), rice flour, beef, soy flour, sugar, propylene glycol, meat and bone meal, tricalcium phosphate, phosphoric acid, salt, water, animal digest, sorbic acid (a preservative), potassium chloride, dried carrots, dried peas, calcium propionate (a preservative), L-Lysine monohydrochloride, choline chloride, added color (Red 40, Yellow 5, Yellow 6, Blue 2), DL-Methionine, Vitamin E supplement, zinc sulfate, ferrous sulfate, manganese sulfate, niacin, Vitamin A supplement, calcium carbonate, copper sulfate, Vitamin B-12 supplement, calcium pantothenate, thiamine mononitrate, garlic oil, pyridoxine hydrochloride, riboflavin supplement, Vitamin D-3 supplement, menadione sodium bisulfite complex (source of Vitamin K activity), calcium iodate, folic acid, biotin, sodium selenite.

 

 

3. Boots & Barkley Dry Dog Food

Boots & Barkley Dog FoodBoots & Barkley Dog Food Why is Boots & Barley Dry Dog Food one of the worst dog foods? The ingredients are: Ground yellow corn, chicken by-product meal, soybean meal, meat and bone meal, animal fat (preserved with BHA and citric acid), corn gluten meal, natural flavor, calcium carbonate, monocalcium phosphate, salt, potassium chloride, choline chloride, color added (titanium dioxide, yellow #6, yellow #5), zinc sulfate, vitamin E supplement, ferrous sulfate, zinc oxide, niacin, copper sulfate, vitamin A supplement, biotin, manganous oxide, calcium pantothenate, vitamin B12 supplement, thiamine monomitrate, pyridoxine hydrochloride, menadione sodium bisulfite complex (source of vitamin K activity), riboflavin supplement, sodium selenite, calcium iodate, folic acid, vitamin D3 supplement, cobalt carbonate.

 

4. Chef Michaels Dog Food

Chef Michaels Dog FoodChef Michaels Dog Food

At least Chef Michaels lists 'beef' as the first ingredient, but all those preservatives should stop you in your tracks!

Why is Chef Micheals unhealthy for your dog? The ingredients are: Beef, soybean meal, soy flour, animal fat preserved with mixed-tocopherols (form of vitamin E), brewers rice, soy protein concentrate, corn gluten meal, ground yellow corn, glycerin, poultry by-product meal, ground wheat, animal digest, salt, pearled barley, calcium carbonate, calcium phosphate, natural filet mignon flavor, dried potatoes, dried green beans, added color (red 40, blue 2, yellow 5, yellow 6 and other color), sulfur, vitamin E supplement, choline chloride, zinc sulfate, ferrous sulfate, niacin, potassium chloride, l-lysine monohydrochloride, manganese sulfate, vitamin A supplement, calcium pantothenate, thiamine mononitrate, copper sulfate, riboflavin supplement, vitamin B12 supplement, pyridoxine hydrochloride, garlic oil, vitamin D3 supplement, folic acid, calcium iodate, menadione sodium bisulfite complex (source of vitamin K activity), biotin, sodium selenite.

 

5.  Hill's Science Diet Dog Food

 

Hill's Science Diet Dog FoodHill's Science Diet Dog FoodWhat science is this? Why is Hill's Science a bad choice for dog food? The ingredients are: Whole grain corn, chicken by-product meal, soybean meal, animal fat (preserved with mixed tocopherols and citric acid), soybean oil, chicken liver flavor, lactic acid, flaxseed, iodized salt, dried chicken cartilage, choline chloride, vitamins (l-ascorbyl-2-polyphosphate (source of vitamin C), vitamin E supplement, niacin, thiamine mononitrate, vitamin A supplement, calcium pantothenate, biotin, vitamin B12 supplement, pyridoxine hydrochloride, riboflavin, folic acid, vitamin D3 supplement), vitamin E supplement, taurine, potassium chloride, minerals (ferrous sulfate, zinc oxide, copper sulfate, manganous oxide, calcium iodate, sodium selenite), l-carnitine, preserved with mixed tocopherols and citric acid, phosphoric acid, beta-carotene, rosemary extract.

 

6. Ol Roy Dog Food

Ol Roy Dog FoodOl Roy Dog Food

Why is Ol Roy on my picks for worst dry dog foods? The ngredients are: Ground yellow corn, meat and bone meal, soybean meal, chicken by-product meal, wheat middlings, animal fat [preserved with BHA and citric acid], natural flavor, brewers rice, salt, calcium carbonate, potassium chloride, choline chloride, color added [red #40, yellow #5, blue #2], zinc sulfate, vitamin E supplement, ferrous sulfate, zinc oxide, niacin, copper sulfate, vitamin A supplement, biotin, manganous oxide, calcium pantothenate, vitamin B12 supplement, thiamine mononitrate, pyridoxine hydrochloride, menadione sodium bisulfite complex [source of vitamin K activity], riboflavin supplement, sodium selenite, calcium iodate, folic acid, vitamin D3 supplement, cobalt carbonate.

 


7. Purina One and Purina Pro Plan Dog Food

Purina OnePurina One

Purina is one of the most popular dog foods, but it is not based on it being good for your dog. The ingredients for Purina One: Chicken (natural source of glucosamine), brewers rice, poultry by-product meal (natural source of glucosamine), corn gluten meal, whole grain wheat, whole grain corn, animal fat preserved with mixed-tocopherols (form of vitamin E), pea fiber, oat meal, fish meal, animal digest, salt, potassium chloride, calcium phosphate, potassium citrate, vitamin E supplement, choline chloride, zinc sulfate, l-lysine monohydrochloride, l-ascorbyl-2-polyphosphate (source of vitamin C), ferrous sulfate, manganese sulfate, niacin, vitamin A supplement, calcium carbonate, copper sulfate, calcium pantothenate, garlic oil, pyridoxine hydrochloride, vitamin B12 supplement, thiamine mononitrate, riboflavin supplement, calcium iodate, vitamin D3 supplement, menadione sodium bisulfite complex (source of vitamin K activity), folic acid, biotin, sodium selenite.

 

8. Pedigree Dry Dog Food

Pedigree Dog FoodPedigree Dog Food

Why is Pedigree Dog Food on my list of popular dogs foods that are bad for your dog? The ingredients: Ground whole corn, chicken by-product meal (natural source of glucosamine) corn gluten meal, animal fat (preserved with BHA and citric acid), meat and bone meal (natural source of calcium), brewers rice, ground whole wheat, dried plain beet pulp, natural flavor, salt, potassium chloride, vegetable oil (source of linoleic acid), vitamins (dl-alpha tocopherol acetate [source of vitamin E], l-ascorbyl-2-polyphosphate [source of vitamin C, vitamin A supplement, thiamine mononitrate [vitamin B1], biotin, d-calcium pantothenate, riboflavin supplement [vitamin B2], vitamin D3 supplement, vitamin B12 supplement), choline chloride, minerals (zinc sulfate, zinc proteinate, copper sulfate, copper proteinate, manganese proteinate, potassium iodide), added FD&C colors (red 40, yellow 5, blue 2)

Are these 8 horrible dog foods enough to get you to read the labels from now on.  Most of these ingredients are non-foods.  That's enough of an indication that they don't belong in your dog's tummy. While healthy dog food costs a bit more than this junk food, it may save your dog from getting diabetes or worse illnesses later on. If you can't afford to buy a better dog food, then you should probably think about buidling a budget for more vet bills. 

For recommended dog foods see my top 5 Best Dog Foods.

Have a cat? See 7 Worst Foods To Feed Your Cat.

 

Sources: Healthy Pets, Dog Food Advisor, Dog Food Scoup, Recipes For Gourmet Dogs

That's the buzz for today!

 

Originally published April 2012 and updated May 2015.

Some of the sites we link to are affiliates. We may earn a small commission if you use our links.

Lady Bee
Pet News
PetsLady.com

Comments
Jan 13, 2015
by Anonymous
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I think you may have it

I think you may have it wrong. Dogs have been domesticated for about 50,000 years. The dog breeds that came to be mans (or womans) best friend evolved over those 50,000 years adapting to eat what the hunter and gatherer tribes ate. As our human ancestors turned to more agronomy for their sustenance, naturally the dog evolved "learning" to eat grains. The dogs digestive tract is very similar to yours and mine. A bit shorter and their stomach secretes a lot more acid than ours ( this is why they can eat road kill and not die from it). People eat corn (popcorn, corn chips, corn flakes, etc.), and as part of a balanced diet the vast number of human nutritionists know it fine. The dog can consume grains just fine.

Jan 19, 2015
by Anonymous
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I think you're miss reading

I think you're miss reading the article. The idea is that too many grains an not enough protein or protein of the wrong kind is not good. My rule of thumb is that if the first three things listed on the ingredients are all grains then its not a good food. Filler filler filler, leaves them hungry sooner, has very little nutritional value, and gives you more poop to clean up because it just goes right through them and doesnt get absorbed. I also use the "salt line" theory. Anthing that appears after salt in the ingredients is basically so miniscule that it doesnt really matter. Most foods that advertise veggies in their ingredients are guilty of this as ingredients are listed in order of quantities. Thus anything less than the salt is very little.

Jan 30, 2015
by Anonymous
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I spent time studying animal

I spent time studying animal nutrition, and just feed your dog. If it has 20 percent protein, some fiber and some fat the dog is eating better than 95% of the human race.

Criticizing a dog food for corn (best energy source there is) and meat and bone meal (what a dog normally eats) is hypocritical at best.

Mar 24, 2015
by Anonymous
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You "person" are a liar!

You "person" are a liar! You never studied "animal nutrition!" IF you had you would know how poisonous corn is for any animals, inc. Humans!! Have you ever watched Food, inc? No ones stomach can digest corn! Nothing! Therefore corn sits in dogs, cows, etc. mold forms, maggots, it rots! Sickness! You are very uneducated when it comes to corn! IF you paid for that education, I'd go ask for a refund if I were you!

Mar 24, 2015
by Anonymous
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LOL Especially if it is GMO

LOL Especially if it is GMO right?? Yeah and bone meal?? What kind of bones? Some that have been sitting for months after they have been picked over? Yeah dogs eat bones but not from diseased animals and definitely not every day, twice a day. ☹

Mar 25, 2015
by Anonymous
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I feel sorry for your corn

I feel sorry for your corn fed pup. My dog is 17 years old and there's a good reason for it. She eats better than I do and I would not change a thing.

May 1, 2015
by Anonymous
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I have three dogs that are

I have three dogs that are at least 18, two at 15, two at 7, and three at 2. All rescues. They all eat Pedigree. Have not taken ANY of them to the Vet for anything but shots and being fixed. Currently have two 20 year old cats. We have given then FRISKIES WHITE FISH AND TUNA PATE - only - since we rescued them in the 90s. They too have never been to the Veteran except for shots and fixing. After bringing five cats to the U.S. From England, and all getting FUS, I learned that FRISKIES White Fish and Tuna had the lowest ash content. They get dry food to keep their teeth clean. Catnip. Stay indoors.

Jun 23, 2015
by kat
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I think the point of this

I think the point of this article is that of the very popular dry foods available, these are not as good as some others. It's not so much that you should not feed these to your dog, but given the great choices out there, perhaps you may want to consider ones that have a more nutritious profile. We can all do better for ourselves and our dogs by making better healthier choices.

Take a look at the top 5 recommended as see if your pets do better on those? http://petslady.com/articles/top_5_dog_foods_dog_food_reviews_2012

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