The Best Wet Dog Food

For all the loyalty and love our dogs show us, they definitely deserve the finer things in life—at the very least quality dog food and plenty of treats. Of course, with the wide variety of dog food brands and canned food types on the market, this can become a tricky chore.

Many canned dog food brands claim their product is the best, and well, they can’t all be telling the truth. To help you with finding a canned dog food that’s actually worthy of the title of “best,” we’ve put together a comprehensive list of dog foods that excel at quality and taste.

Some of the best canned dog foods on our list are so well prepared, you might be tempted to give it a taste. Let’s get started!

Best Wet Food for Dogs: Top Picks

9 Best Wet Dog Food Brands


Why is Purina Beneful Prepared Meals on our list of best wet dog foods? It offers something we all crave in our diet—variety. In a Purina variety pack, you’ll find real beef, chicken, and lamb and rice recipes. Each is mixed with wholesome grains and veggies to give your dog a perfect balance of deliciousness and a healthy diet.

Proof of this dog food’s excellence is also evident in its visible chunks of tender meat soaked in a delectable stew. Unlike with low-quality dog food, you won’t have to worry about artificial colors, preservatives, or flavors that might hurt your furry friend. Instead, you get a wet food pack that’s loaded with vitamins and minerals essential to the overall health and wellness of your adult dog.

Why Dogs Love This Wet Food

  • Rich and savory gravy that makes for delightful licking
  • Sizable chunks of real meat—be it the beef, lamb, or chicken recipe that’s served
  • Real vegetables that add texture to the meal and deliver 23 essential vitamins and minerals
  • Can be mixed with dry dog food or served as a complete meal
  • A perfect balance of calories and proteins
  • Variety in different packs, so meals never get boring

Want something for your dog that feels homemade? Blue Buffalo’s Homestyle Chicken Dinner recipe is an option worth considering.

Its unique blend of chicken, brown rice, and a variety of garden vegetables make it a great low-calorie option. The addition of blueberries and cranberries to the recipe also provide a rich source of antioxidants that’s unlike what most other dog food brands offer.

This homestyle meal keeps the calories down by keeping wheat, corn, artificial preservatives, and by-product meals out of its recipe. This also minimizes the risk of your dog suffering an allergic reaction to the food.

Aside from its health benefits, Blue Buffalo Homestyle Recipe Chicken Canned Food’s delectable promise of a chicken chunk in every bite is a tasty treat most dogs can’t resist.

It’s also affordable, which means you don’t have to worry about blowing your whole paycheck to keep your furry buddy happy.

Why Dogs Love This Wet Food

  • A balanced blend of antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals that boost your dog’s immune system and keeps him/her active
  • Rich in biotin that ensures healthy skin and a pretty coat
  • High-quality chicken in visible chunks.
  • Whole grains that deliver enough healthy carbohydrates for energy
  • Lots of garden vegetables and fruit for texture variety in each serving
  • Because each serving is nutritionally complete, there’s no need for those pesky supplement tablets your dog hates.

This pricey wet dog food is worth the investment if your four-legged friend has a delicate tummy.

It comes highly recommended by vets for special needs dogs that need something appetizing which can also be easily digested. If your dog is healthy but has trouble digesting fat, Canin Veterinary Diet gastrointestinal low-fat canned food comes highly recommended.

This specialized product is prepared with specific ingredients to ensure a healthy balance of antioxidants, easily-digestible proteins, and prebiotics. This combination boosts your pet’s immune system, ensures peak physical condition, and a healthy balance of good bacteria in his/her stomach.

Royal Canin Veterinary Diet doesn’t just aim to boost your dog’s physical health either, but also their mental health. This is evident in how rich the food is in EPA, DHA, and Omega-3 fatty acids found in fish.

Because of this dog food’s unique content, some sellers may require a veterinary’s authorization before selling it to you.

Why Dogs Love This Wet Food

  • Rich in dietary fibers that ensure healthy bowel movements
  • Great for dogs that have trouble digesting fat
  • Highly recommended for helping dogs recover from vomiting, diarrhea, or appetite loss
  • Great for boosting the immune system and supporting an active doggy lifestyle
  • Loaded with Omega-3 fatty acids, EPA, and DHA that keep your puppy sharp

If your dog isn’t a fan of home cooked meals and prefers to feast on the wild side, Taste of the Wild High Prairie grain-free canned dog food is what you need to invest in.

This unique wet dog food recipe contains not just real beef, chicken, fish, and lamb, but also bison and roasted venison. It’s a rich protein mix with an aroma that will drive your hound positively wild.

To support the rich and delicious protein content, there are energy-giving carbs in the form of real potatoes, sweet potatoes, and peas. And to top it all, natural antioxidants in the form of blueberries, raspberries, and tomatoes.

No one blames you if you are tempted to give this intriguing recipe a taste. Even with its excellent balance of nutrition and mouthwatering goodness, this dog food is still surprisingly affordable, which makes it a top contender on our list of best canned dog foods.

Why Dogs Love This Wet Food

  • A tempting combination of real beef, chicken, lamb, bison, and roasted venison
  • A tasty gravy that can be mixed with dried foods or enjoyed alone
  • Rich in prebiotics for a healthy immune and digestive system
  • A perfect balance of vitamins and nutrients in every serving
  • Rich in Omega-3 and -6 fatty acids for a sound body, healthy skin, and beautiful fur

The name of this dog food might not be exciting, but its recipe sure is. You don’t need a five-star chef to get your dog to eat its vegetables. Just grab a can of Hill's Science Diet Adult Savory Stew with chicken and vegetables.

It contains strips of real chicken, a variety of nutrient-rich vegetables, and brown rice, all soaking in a rich and delicious stew. The balance of protein, carbs, minerals, vitamins, and Omega-6 fatty acids in every can make this dog food ideal if you want an active and healthy life for your adult dog.

Why Dogs Love This Wet Food

  • A drool-inducing stew packed with pieces of beef, chicken, brown rice, and vegetables
  • The lean protein content in each can is great for maintaining your dog’s weight and muscles
  • Easy on the tummy and great for digestion
  • Rich in biotin and vitamin E that ensure healthy skin and a shiny coat
  • There’s an adult variant for dogs between 1 to 6 years of age and dogs that are 7 or above.

Natural Balance offers a great and less-expensive alternative to other brands without compromising on taste, meat content, or nutritional value.

The chunks of quality chicken, Iamb, salmon, and venison in Natural Balance Ultra-Premium might not be as large as what’s found in other premium canned dog foods, but the company makes up for it by adding a rich combination of fresh carrots, legumes, sweet potatoes, and brown rice to the mix.

Taste and aroma are key to getting any dog interested in a meal, and Natural Balance avoids compromising on either by keeping artificial ingredients and by-products out of their cans.

Why Dogs Love This Wet Food

  • Available in beef, lamb, liver, and chicken variants—and because the prices of each variant aren’t far apart, you can offer your four-legged buddy a different recipe every day to keep mealtime interesting
  • Addition of Yucca Schidigera extract to the formula for a healthy digestive system and to minimize the smelliness of your dog’s poop
  • Suitable for all dog breeds at all ages
  • Contains dried kelp and carrots for vitamins like A and B12 that boost the immune system
  • Each batch of dog food is tested for quality and safety before heading to stores

You won’t have to worry about finding any corn, wheat, soy, or gluten in this entrant on our best wet dog food list. Even better, it's incredibly affordable at less than $20 and can be fed to your small, medium, or large breed adult dog.

Each can is packed with protein goodness (chicken meat, turkey, and chicken liver) that’ll set any canine’s tail wagging. The rich protein content of Instinct’s formula is balanced out with wholesome fruits and vegetables that are rich in vitamins and minerals, and to keep your best friend’s fur luxuriant and soft, omega fatty acids are added to the recipe.

Why Dogs Love This Wet Food

  • Each can is 95-percent chicken meat, chicken liver, and turkey
  • Fruits and vegetables that are rich in minerals and vitamins make up the rest of the can for a healthy immune system and optimal physical health
  • It contains no artificial colors, preservatives, or by-product meal
  • For picky eaters, there are no potatoes, soy, corn, wheat, or other grains in the formula

Spoil your canine companion with this gourmet wet food that’s suitable for small and large dogs alike. The variety pack consists of four hard to resist recipes: Angus beef, filet mignon, rotisserie chicken, and ham and eggs.

Unlike most of the other foods on this list that come in hard to open cans, this delight comes in an easy peel-away, single-serve tray. Even your dog can serve itself from this packaging.

Each recipe is infused with the vitamins and minerals that are crucial to any dog enjoying a happy and healthy life, meaning each self-serve tray is suitable as a meal on its own, or as a topper on dry dog food.

Asides from the beef/chicken/ham variety pack, you can also purchase the CESAR Steak Lover variety pack, which is loaded with all sorts of delectable meat cuts for meat-loving dogs. There’s also the Poultry Lover variety pick for dogs with a hankering for bird meat.

Why Dogs Love This Wet Food

  • Delicious filet mignon, Angus beef, rotisserie chicken, and ham and egg recipes—it’s basically fine dining for dogs
  • Packed with the vitamins and minerals that boost immunity and guarantee a healthy life
  • Small and large dogs alike love it, be it on its own or mixed with dry food
  • Variety of textures in each serving. Even picky eaters will find it irresistible
  • Easy to use and lick disposable single-serve trays

Show some love to your pooch with Pedigree Choice Cuts. Each pouch contains a tasty reward in the form of delectable Filet Mignon cuts baptized in a rich gravy.

It’s great for treating your dog or simply serving as a whole meal, especially since this wet food is very budget friendly. Depending on your preference, you can get the single-pack pouch, or the eight, 18 or 24 pack variant.

Each meaty pack contains vitamins, oils, and minerals that ensure your dog stays healthy on the outside and inside.

Why Dogs Love This Wet Food

  • Great for adult small-, medium-, or large-breed dogs
  • Filet mignon cuts that’ll get your dog excited
  • Each meat piece’s texture and size make for easy eating
  • If you purchase the variety pack, you can switch up the recipe between flavors like filet mignon in gravy, grilled chicken in sauce, beef, noodles and vegetable in sauce, and more.
  • Rich in vitamins, oil, and minerals for a good looking and healthy dog

As the name implies, this can of doggie goodness is corn, wheat, soy, grain, and gluten free, but it is packed with real deboned chicken.

The contents of the can sit in a rich chicken broth that raises the moisture and taste of every bite. Merrick's gluten-free recipe is reinforced with vitamins A, B12, E, D3, amino acids, and other essential vitamins and minerals to make sure your dog gets a balanced diet from a delicious meal. 

And you don’t have to worry about the safety of this tasty delight as each serving is free of artificial colors, flavors, and preservatives.

Why Dogs Love This Wet Food

  • Great for different breeds of small and large dogs
  • Easily digestible proteins and wholesome carbs
  • Contains deboned chicken, which makes it a delicious, non-choking hazard
  • Rich chicken broth with a flavor and aroma that keeps your canine companion wanting more
  • The ideal blend of vitamins and minerals that maintain your dog’s weight and overall health

Iams’ track record as a dog food maker might not be stellar, but the company makes up for its past mistakes with this quality product.

High-quality animal proteins are the stars of Iams ProActive Health Adult with lamb and rice. The lamb and rice combo are backed by a balanced addition of vitamins, minerals, and omega fatty acids that support strong and healthy immune systems.

The slow cooking process used to prepare the lamb and rice pate ensure as few vitamins and minerals as possible are destroyed, while the broth keeps in the flavor.

Why Dogs Love This Wet Food

  • High-quality and enticing animal proteins
  • Vitamins and minerals for a healthy and balanced diet
  • Omega fatty acids that ensure a healthy, shiny coat
  • Only natural ingredients are used in the preparation

Buying Guide Section

The key to getting the best canned food for dogs is to know what to look out for. Aside from that, you also need to know which can’s content will best satisfy your canine buddy’s nutritional and appetite needs.

If you have no idea what we’re talking about, don’t panic. In this buying guide section, we’ll share everything you need to know about picking the best wet dog food. We’ll also be looking at how to serve it, store it, and more.


What to Look for in Wet Dog Food

What your dog eats goes a long way in influencing his/her happiness and health. As such, you need to be careful what you feed your dog, especially if it’s packaged food, and you have no idea what’s in it.

To help you pick wet food that’s nutritious, delicious, and safe for your dog, look out for the following details on the packaging:

  • The specific types of meat used to make the food, especially the protein used as the first ingredient. It will contain more of the first ingredient than any other ingredient listed on the packaging.
  • If the food contains whole grains and vegetables, and in what amount. Certain wet dog foods are advertised as grain-free, while others use grains and vegetable products in limited amounts.
  • A label from AAFCO that declares the food “complete and balanced.” This means the food contains all the ingredients and nutrients for a balanced diet.
  • The expiration dates. The packaging must have manufacture and expiration dates. The expiry date must be at least a month away from the day you intend on serving the wet food.

If the packaging of a wet dog food claims the product contains the following ingredients, it’s likely of lesser quality:

  • By-products. Low-quality wet dog foods often contain by-products from meat, grains, and vegetables. They are highly-processed, low-nutrient products that do more harm than good to your dog. Also, beware of foods that contain “modified beef,” and suspicious chemicals or preservatives.  
  • Unspecified protein sources. Quality wet dog foods clearly state the type of meat used in their product. If the label is vague regarding the type of animal or meat, don’t trust it.
  • Food binders like gums and wheat gluten are used to make highly-processed meat look like natural meat chunks. If this ingredient is prominent on the list, it might not be safe for your best friend’s consumption.
  • Sweeteners. Processed sugar or artificial sweeteners should not be in your dog’s food. Low-quality foods commonly add sugar, corn syrup, or molasses to improve the taste of their product.
  • Artificial coloring. Avoid foods that contain artificial coloring at all costs. Its presence is a clear sign that the food isn’t what it claims to be.
  • Excess preservatives. Preservatives are needed to help extend the shelf-life of wet foods, but excess preservatives can be injurious to your dog’s health.

The above are typical things to look out for when buying wet food for a regular dog, but what if your dog as special needs?


What to Watch For if Your Dog Has Special Diet and Nutrition Needs

Every dog is unique, physically, and mentally. As such, your dog may have unique quirks and sensitivities that need to be taken into consideration when buying wet food for him/her.

For example, if your dog is active and lean, wet food with a higher fat and protein content will be best for it. On the other hand, if your dog is older and less energetic, wet food with more lean proteins will make for a better choice.

The same goes if your dog has allergies or is prone to infections. Once you've identified what triggers your dog's allergies, avoid wet food that contains that substance in any form. Less acidic food (has a lower pH) is recommended for dogs that are prone to urinary tract infections.

Always do your research, both via the brand's packaging or informational website and by checking online reviews, such as this one, to verify the safety of a wet food brand's product.


Wet vs. Dry Dog Food

Are you having trouble deciding if a wet or dry dog food is best for your dog? The truth is they both have their unique advantages and disadvantages. Before choosing either, you need to weigh those pros and cons against the unique needs of you and your dog.

Pros of Wet Dog Food

  • Quality canned wet foods have richer content than dry dog food
  • Wet foods are a good source of hydration, especially for dogs that don’t drink enough water
  • Wet food is ideal for older dogs with fewer teeth. It is also a great choice because its richer aroma will be more attractive to an older pet with a failing sense of smell
  • Its enticing flavor and appearance are more appealing to dogs with reduced appetite
  • Wet foods are ideal for dogs with jaw problems or small mouths

Cons of Wet Dog Food

  • Cleaning up can be messy—especially if your dog is a messy eater
  • Unlike dry food, wet food has a very short shelf-life (two to three days) once opened
  • Once served, wet food can only stay out for an hour or less before spoiling
  • Top-quality wet food is typically more expensive than dry dog food of equal quality

Pros of Dry Dog Food

  • It’s generally more economical and cost-effective than wet food
  • It’s more convenient to serve and clean up
  • It has a longer shelf life
  • You can serve your dog enough dry food for a whole day or even longer without worrying about it spoiling
  • Storage is easy and convenient
  • It can be used as a dental health supplement, especially if it’s specially formulated to clean teeth when chewed

Cons of Dry Dog Food

  • Dry foods can lead to dehydration, especially during hot weather or if the dog is unwell
  • Its longer shelf life can mean it contains more preservatives
  • Dry foods generally contain less animal-based proteins, which are a vital source of nutrition for a growing dog.

Since dry and wet dog food both have their upsides and downsides, it’s recommended that you feed your dog both. This way, your pet gets to enjoy the best of both worlds.


Mixing Wet and Dry Dog Food

Feeding your dog just wet food or just dry food isn’t a crime. Both are very capable of satisfying your dog’s hunger and nutritional needs but sticking to just one of the two limits your dog’s feeding options, which can lead to your dog becoming an unenthusiastic or picky eater.

To fix this, we recommend mixing wet and dry dog food so that your dog can enjoy the full benefits both options have to offer – the rich flavors of wet food and the crunchy goodness of dry foods. Follow this strategy, and one upside you can look forward to is your dog approaching meals with more enthusiasm and possibly fewer leftovers.

To get the best results from serving your dog both food types, you need to go about doing it the right way. Below are crucial do’s and don’ts to guide mixing your dog’s wet and dry foods.

Dos

  • Do talk to your veterinarian before mixing wet and dry foods. Failure to consult your vet can lead to purging, unwanted weight gain, overexposure to certain vitamins and minerals, and so on. Your vet will advise you regarding the best mixture options.
  • Do mix foods that have different aromas, textures, and shapes. This will get your dog more excited about the meal, especially if you keep changing up the mixture.
  • Do add a bit of water to dry foods to moisten it. You can also mix in wet foods to moisten up the dry food and add flavor to it.

Don’ts

  • Don’t mix therapeutic foods with other food types. Mixing other foods with a diet that’s designed to solve a particular health problem might lead to complications or relapse.
  • Don't mix foods without considering portion control. Wet foods carry fewer calories per gram, so a wrong mixture can lead to weight gain or loss.
  • Don’t rush the change. Suddenly switching from dry or wet to mixed food might upset your dog’s sensitive tummy. Consider gradually introducing mixtures in small amounts and adjusting the mix ratio over a seven-day period.

How Much Wet Food to Feed a Dog

According to most sources, the ideal quantity of wet food to feed your dog is:

  • A 3-ounce can of wet dog food daily for a dog with a weight of 3 to 3½ pounds. A 3-ounce can should be divided into two or more meals over the course of the day, depending on the dog’s eating habits and physical condition.
  • A 10-ounce can of wet dog food daily for a dog with a weight of 10½ to 12½ pounds. A 10-ounce can should be divided into two or more meals over the course of the day.

So, for a small dog, a 3-ounce can per 3 pounds of the dog’s weight, and for a larger dog, 10 ounces of wet dog food per every 10 pounds the dog weighs. A puppy will need up to twice the amount of wet food per pound of weight as an adult dog.

If combined with dry food, it is important to note that a 3-ounce can of wet dog food is equal to about a ¼ cup of dry food, while a 10-ounce container replaces about a ¾ cup of dry dog food.


How Long Can You Leave Wet Dog Food Out?

As earlier stated, wet dog food has a very short shelf life once it has been opened. Once you’ve served wet food to your dog, don’t let it sit out for more than 20 minutes. If your dog doesn’t finish it after 20 minutes, the only thing left to do is throw away the leftovers.

It might seem wasteful to throw leftover wet food away, but it's for the best. After sitting in the open for more than 20 minutes, the food is exposed to organisms and will begin to spoil. Consuming such can be harmful.

The alternative to trashing wet food leftovers is to refrigerate it as soon as possible until the next feeding time, but if the food has been sitting out for about an hour, just trash it.


How to Store Wet Dog Food

When wet food is still sealed in its package (can or pack), it can be stored in a room 50 to 100 degrees in temperature. If the room is hotter than this, it can negatively impact the integrity of the can’s content. Also, do not refrigerate an unopened can or pack as this will negatively impact the food’s texture and taste.

After you've opened a can of wet food, store it in a refrigerator for no more than two to three days. If keeping in a fridge, be sure to cover the can with a lid or seal it with some other temporary lid. This will stop the can’s contents from drying out.


That’s all folks ! 

Your dog loves you so much that they blindly trust you to feed them the right thing. Repay your buddy’s loyalty with some premium wet dog food. It’s the least you can do, and you won’t regret it because you’re going to end up with a healthy and gorgeous looking dog.