21 Worst Dog Food Brands To Avoid In 2023

21 Worst Dog Food Brands To Avoid In 2022
21 Worst Dog Food Brands To Avoid In 2022

We are all aware that selecting the best dog food for your cherished pet can be a tiresome effort when it comes to feeding your dog. You must be careful about what you feed your dog because there are so many different brands of dog food on the market nowadays. Although avoiding dangerous substances is easier said than done, every dog owner should be able to recognize terrible dog food. In the following article, we are going to list the 21 worst wet, dry, and grain-free dog food brands to avoid in 2023that can be harmful to your pets according to FDA.

Many dog food brands like to disclose all of the components in their goods, even if this isn’t always a good indication of the brand’s overall quality since many human food products try to hide their ingredient lists. So, if you’re looking for information about the worst dog food brands to avoid away from, you’ve come to the right place.

Dog Food Brands To Avoid FDA

Dog owners are being cautioned by the US Food and Drug Administration that some pet meals may develop a condition that results in congestive heart failure. Since July 2018, the FDA has been looking into the connection between some dog meals and dilated cardiomyopathy, generally known as DCM or canine heart disease.

More than 500 cases have been documented, with 16 pet food brands appearing the most frequently, according to a report from USA Today. The majority of cases concerned large breed dogs, such as Labrador and golden retrievers, but certain minor breeds were also impacted, leading experts to conclude that there was no genetic link.

According to USA Today, one link they did discover was that the dogs consumed dry dog food, and the vast majority of it was grain-free or contained peas and/or lentils. According to the FDA, the following dog food brands had the highest number of DCM cases:
The brands are listed in descending order of the cases associated with them, which ranged from 10 to a high of 67:

  • Acana
  • Zignature
  • Taste of the Wild
  • 4Health
  • Earthborn Holistic
  • Blue Buffalo
  • Nature’s Domain
  • Fromm
  • Merrick
  • California Natural
  • Natural Balance
  • Orijen
  • Nature’s Variety
  • NutriSource
  • Nutro
  • Rachael Ray Nutrish

According to the FDA, DCM instances have increased over the past few years. Researchers are investigating if changing chemicals, changing the ingredients’ source, or changing how the ingredients are processed may be to blame for the rise in DCM cases.

List of Dog Food Brands to Avoid

As we discuss the 21 worst wet, dry, and grain-free dog food brands to avoid in 2023, we thought it could be helpful to offer you an overview of certain nutritionally lacking food components. However, they also include both proteins and carbohydrates. Other items to avoid are byproducts, artificial additives, and wheat middlings.

It is best to be aware of the list of the 21 worst dog food brands to avoid in 2023 while caring for your puppy. We are available to assist you with feeding your pet. The absence of wholesome ingredients or the use of low-quality ingredients is typically the main cause of these food brands.

Here is a list of the 13 worst dog food brands to avoid in 2023 based on our study. Simply read it through.

  • Purina Dog Chow
  • Twin Pet Dog Food
  • Purina Beneful
  • Kal Kan Complete Adult Food
  • IAMS Pro-Active Health
  • Kibbles‘n Bits
  • Cesar Filets
  • Pedigree
  • Ol’ Roy Complete Nutrition Dog Food
  • Gravy Train
  • Alpo by Purina
  • Wegmans Bruiser kibble
  • Diamond Dog Food

Dog Food Brands To Avoid

For many, a dog is their best buddy. Almost all families with pets treat them no less than family members. However, inexperienced pet owners might not be aware of the proper food to provide their pets. They might not be aware of the foods they should avoid eating. It’s possible that they are unaware of which dog food brands to use and which brands to avoid. Following is a list of the 21 worst dog food brands to avoid in 2023. We say this because their ingredients may not be healthy for your dog or may even be hazardous.

#1. Gravy Train

The presence of the BHA preservative in Gravy Train is the main reason why you should avoid away from it. According to the World Health Organization, BHA has the potential to cause cancer. The company that makes the canned dog food also creates items with ingredients including wheat flour, animal fat, and food coloring. You would not want your puppy’s health to decline as a result of any of these components.

#2. Purina Alpo Come’ n’ Get It

Yellow maize, soybean, corn germ, bone, pork, corn gluten, preservatives, and animal digest are all included in Purina Alpo. These items shouldn’t be in your dog’s diet because they are all bad for them.

For your dog to grow up strong and healthy, the perfect dog food would contain higher quality ingredients, less salt, and no animal by-products. In addition, this formula places a greater emphasis on carbohydrates than proteins, which is incorrect. You should avoid clear of this dog food brand for the reasons indicated above.

#3. IAMS Proactive Health Adult Chunks

Even though chicken is the first ingredient listed on the label, you must read the entire list to understand why it is there. It starts with cornmeal.

In addition, sorghum and beet pulp are included. Sorghum is another ingredient that offers dogs nothing in the way of nourishment, while beet pulp contains a lot of fiber byproducts, which makes dogs gain weight. As a result, it is another item on the list due to the ingredients’ nutritional worth.

#4. Twin Pet Dog Food

Twin Pet dog food is made from plants. Dogs need meat, so a plant-based diet is not a good choice. In addition, corn appears as the first item on the list. The maximum amount of an incorrect ingredient is not appropriate.

It also includes wheat middlings. For those who don’t know, wheat middlings is a by-product of milling wheat. It also contains meat and bone meal, which, as was previously said, is unhealthy for your dog and more difficult to digest. Twin Pet is included on this list due to its high grain and preservative content.

#5. Kal Kan

Kan Dog Kal Although food may avoid your pet’s need for protein, there are several warning signs you may want to be aware of. It has corn in it, to start. Of course, if maize were present in practically every item on our list as a filler, we would not need to mention it.

#6. Ol’ Roy Complete Nutrition

This particular brand is on the list because it may contain small amounts of BHA preservatives, which, as was previously mentioned, promote the development of cancer cells. Additionally, it contains bone meals, meals made from soybeans, and meals made from poultry by-products. Animal species cannot be used to categorize by-products according to how they are produced.

#7. Pedigree

It may look like meat-based dog food, but Pedigree Complete Nutrition Adult is not. Three types of plant-based nutrients are among the first five ingredients. Unfortunately, your dog won’t get enough nutrition from these.

Now that meat meal and bone meal are protein sources, it is impossible to determine which animal (or animal) was utilized to make this product. It also has artificial coloring, which is bad for your dog. So, even if it’s inexpensive, you should avoid away from it.

#8. Cesar Filets

The market is heavily dominated by Caesar filets. It is widely available and is regarded as a luxury food for little dog breeds. The salt content in Cesar filets is the main problem. It has a huge amount of sodium. As your dog ages, it seriously jeopardizes its health.

#9. Kibbles’ N’ Bits

This dog food largely derives its nutrients from plant sources. Corn and other cereals are abundant. This indicates that it is not protein-based but rather carbohydrate-based. For a dog’s diet, that is not a healthy thing.

Additionally, it contains excessive amounts of substances like corn, wheat, and soy, all of which are bad for your dog in the long term. Additionally, corn syrup has been added. So once more, it is not nutritionally essential and, if your dog already has fat issues, it will make things worse.

#10. SPORTMiX Wholesomes

When selecting dog food, SPORTMiX Wholesomes shouldn’t be your first option. This is due to the fact that it has a lot more carbohydrates and not as many nutrients as other brands (24 percent protein, 13 percent fat, and over 54 percent carbohydrates).

When selecting dog food, SPORTMiX Wholesomes shouldn’t be your first option. This is due to the fact that it has a lot more carbohydrates and not as many nutrients as other brands (24 percent protein, 13 percent fat, and over 54 percent carbohydrates).

Wet Dog Food Brands To Avoid

Avoid artificial fillers in wet dog food brands. These are inexpensive components that can be used in place of more nutrient-dense foods. Look at the “Stated Protein Content” on the container before selecting a wet dog food to make sure the amount and source of protein are appropriate for your dog’s breed.

Avoid purchasing wet dog food brands that include unexplained meat byproducts. These byproducts may include meat meals laced with toxic cohesive or rejects from the slaughterhouse.

#11. Cesar Filets Delight Porterhouse Steak Flavor With Peas And Carrots Dog Food Tray

This wet food’s primary component, water, is jeopardized by the addition of meat by-products. They don’t specify what kind of meat is being thrown in addition to being leftovers. If your dog has allergies or skin issues, this should raise serious warning flags.

#12. Purina Mighty Dog Chicken, Egg & Bacon Country Platter Wet Dog Food

This particular brand’s primary ingredient is chicken, however, it also contains a number of unidentified meat byproducts. Unidentified meat varieties and pieces are hazardous to dogs who have food allergies. Guar gum, which can result in nausea and diarrhea, is also included.

#13. Pedigree Wet Dog Food Chopped Ground Dinner With Chicken

Pedigree is notorious for being of subpar quality. This particular food contains leftover chicken. Additionally, it contains brewers’ rice, a leftover from the milling of white rice. Compared to white rice, which is already low in nutrients, it is less nutrient-dense.

#14. Gravy Train Beef Chunks In Gravy Wet Dog Food

Butylated hydroxyanisole, a food preservative, is included in this food. Dogs who consume this component run the risk of renal failure. Although the Gravy Train Beef Chunks are inexpensive, they are not suggested for a consistent diet.

#15. Ol’ Roy Meaty Loaf Wet Food

This company sells a variety of flavors, however, all contain hazardous ingredients for dogs such as soy flour and guar gum. It also contains a lot of salt.

Dry Dog Food Brands To Avoid

Avoid brands of dry food that make extensive use of wheat, cereal, or meat byproducts. To avoid the shelf life of the food, chemicals, and colors should not be utilized in dry foods. These may result in pulmonary issues.

Avoid buying dog food from brands that use preservatives excessively. In addition to causing organ failure, dehydration, stomach discomfort, tooth decay, and other long-term health problems, preservatives have been linked to cancer.

#16. Purina Dog Chow Complete Adult Dry Dog Food With Real Chicken

Whole-grain corn, which dogs find challenging to digest, is a component of this dry food. Constipation and other digestive issues may result from it. It is bad for dogs since it is high in fat and lacking in fiber.

#17. Kibbles ‘n Bits Original Savoury Beef & Chicken Flavours Dry Dog Food

To preserve the food, this brand uses the ingredient butylated hydroxyanisole (BHA). If consumed in high quantities, it can harm your dog’s kidneys. Additionally, this formula contains plant-based protein and artificial food colors and has a high carbohydrate content and low moisture content.

#18. Iams ProActive Health Adult MiniChunks Dry Dog Food

Although this food uses synthetic protein, it still contains numerous vitamins and minerals. The chicken utilized is a by-product, meaning it is made from chickens that were killed for human consumption but whose leftovers were not consumed. If your dog already has allergies, this could exacerbate them. Owners choose this brand because it is inexpensive, but if you can, spend more money on better-quality food.

#19. Kal Kan Adult Dog Food

This brand’s first five ingredients are by-products. Giving these chemicals to dogs becomes risky because they are unidentified. The primary component, maize, is bad for dogs. Additionally, it contains a lot of synthetic proteins.

#20. Purina Senior 7+ Healthy Morsels Soft & Crunchy Bites Dog 

Contains substantial amounts of ground wheat, soybeans, and animal fats—ingredients that your dog shouldn’t consume.

Grain-Free Dog Food Brands To Avoid

The US Food and Drug Administration published a list of 16 grain-free dog food products in 2019 that could potentially lead to heart disease in dogs. According to the study, consuming potatoes and peas in excess as a substitute for other sources of carbohydrates raises the risk of heart disease.
The following brands of dog food are the worst because they contain desirable components but have one or two harmful ingredients:

  • Acana
  • Zignature
  • Taste of the Wild
  • 4Health
  • Earthborn Holistic
  • Blue Buffalo
  • Nature’s Domain
  • Fromm
  • Merrick
  • California Natural
  • Natural Balance
  • Orijen
  • Nature’s Variety
  • NutriSource
  • Nutro
  • Rachel Ray Nutrish

The contents of these top 21 dog food brands may not be suitable for your dog; therefore, you should avoid them in 2023.


Remember not to give your dog anything you would not eat yourself if you are unclear about the 21 worst wet, dry, and grain-free dog food brands to avoid in 2023. Avoid meat byproducts since you never know what they are and your dog can get sick from them. The first ingredient in premium brands is a natural source of protein, and the vegetables and carbohydrates are balanced.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the number one most toxic food for dogs?

Canine toxic food

  • Onions, garlic, and chives.
  • Chocolate.
  • Macadamia nuts.
  • Corn on the cob.
  • Avocado.
  • Artificial sweetener (Xylitol)
  • Alcohol.
  • Cooked bones

What is the most reliable dog food brand?

The Top 4 Dog Food Brands Veterinarians Recommend

  • Royal Canin.
  • Hills Science Diet.
  • Purina ProPlan.
  • Eukanuba.

Is cheese bad for dogs?

According to the ASPCA, milk and other dairy-based products give pets diarrhea or other digestive discomforts because they don’t have enough lactase, an enzyme that breaks down lactose in milk. The lesson: Avoid giving your dog cheese as a frequent treat or as part of their usual diet.

What fruit is poisonous to dogs?

While grapes and raisins can harm the kidneys, cherries are hazardous to both cats and dogs. Persimmons and other citrus fruits like lemons, limes, and grapefruit might upset your stomach.

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