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Dry Food versus Wet Food: The Debate

Matt Formica
Matt Formica

May 05, 2017

Is dry food better for your dog than wet food?  Or is wet food better than dry?  Is one really better than the other?  As a lifetime dog owner, I've had a curiosity about this for years.

The hardcore dog owner will tell you that good, nutritional kibble always wins.  And listen, if we could only pick one option and the other was going to be wiped off the face of the planet, I would say it would probably be smarter to have dry win out.

But just because you should eat kale, raw vegetables, lean protein, water and nothing else all day, doesn't always mean that that's the way to a more fulfilling life.

(Especially after you've had a bone in ribeye with parmesan mashed potatoes and a bottle of wine.)

The reality is, every dog, like every human being, is different.  So what might make sense for one dog's diet might not make sense for another.  It is really up to you as a dog owner to understand your dog's digestive system (and appetite preferences) to make the decision that best suits your four legged friend.  

But there are certainly benefits to each.  Let's take a look at a few interesting distinctions.

Contrary to popular belief, canned food can be superior to dry food in some areas.  

Canned food benefits:

1.)  Canned food usually has less carbohydrates and more protein per serving than dry food.

2.)  Due to it's air-tight seal, and shorter shelf-life once opened, canned foods don't have synthetic preservatives like those contained in many dry food mixes.

3.)  Typically, canned food does not utilize artificial flavorings and colorings.

4.)  Since the meat in canned foods is closer to it's natural state than kibble, dogs tend to like it more.  (Keep in mind, it can be a slippery slope.  It can be challenging to go back to dry kibble once you've given your dog canned food.  I know from experience).

One of our favorite canned foods right now:

healthy canned dog food

Others we like: Blue Buffalo, Newman's Own, Taste of the Wild

But here is where the dry food wins.

Dry Food Benefits:

1.)  No question, kibble is much more convenient.  You can leave dry food out in your dogs bowl for far longer than wet food, which spoils a lot faster.  Not to mention, the cleanup is much easier.

2.)  Dry food is almost always more cost effective on serving by serving basis.

3.)  Dry food storage is also easier.  Unlike canned food, which requires immediate refrigeration upon opening, dry food can be stored anywhere.  (Just make sure to keep it out of reach of your pup.

4.)  There are a ton of options for dry kibble, so you as a dog owner can find the food that is healthiest and most enjoyable for your dog's consumption.

One of our current favorite dry foods:

healthy dog kibble


Others we like:  Blue Buffalo, Science Diet and Iams

Either food, dry or wet, can provide nutritional value as long as they are made with quality ingredients.  Make sure you are looking at the ingredients in whatever type of food you choose.  You can never be too careful when it comes to what your pup is ingesting.

The same goes for us humans as well.

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