When it comes to organic feeds, the US is at the forefront United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) has a specified classification of food that qualifies to carry the ‘organic’ tag.
What is organic dog food?
The organic label on animal products, including dog food, indicates that the food was produced according to strict federal guidelines. These guidelines cover everything from how the animals are raised to what they eat.
Animals raised for organic meat, eggs, and dairy can’t be given hormones or antibiotics. They must have access to the outdoors, and they can’t be fed animal byproducts.
Organic fruits and vegetables must be grown without the use of synthetic pesticides, herbicides, or fertilizers.
Organic food can’t be irradiated or treated with sewage sludge.
A recent 2021 study to understand pet food attribute preferences of US consumers found that “specifically, natural, wholesome, organic, or cruelty-free pet food is gaining popularity” and another study (Vinasse et al., 2020) found that “natural” ingredients were the most important attribute pet parents used when determining pet food quality.
In this article, I have explored this topic in detail starting with a review of my top organic dog food available in the market from select manufacturers that meet the USDA requirements of having chemical-free dog food processing friends using certified organic ingredients.
It is important to note that the study also went further to explain that those consumers that preferred natural ingredients in their dog food were more likely to be educated and have higher incomes. In fact, in their concluding statistics, those were the main two factors that were statistically significant with a p-value of more than 0.5 as shown in the table below.
So, is it just the rich and educated folks caring to get organic dog food for their dogs? Of course not. The stats are sample and do not represent each individual preference but given that they are more expensive compared to other commercial dog food brands, it does make sense that wealthier pet parents have a higher demand for it.
Best Organic Dog Food:
- Tender and True Organic Dog Food
- Gather Free Acres Dog Food
- Castor and Pollux Organix Organic Dog Food
- Primal Freeze-Dried Formula Dog Food
- Honest Kitchen Dehydrated Dog Food
- Newman’s Own Organic Dog Food
- Carna4 Dog Food
- Organix Butcher and Bushel Dog Food
Reviews of the Best Organic Dog Food in 2022
Our overall best organic dog food in this updated 2022 list is by a brand with over 90% approval from pet parents that have tried it. This top pick Castor & Pollux Organix Dog Food is a USDA organic certified dry dog food with grain that is made with organic chicken raised without any added growth hormones or antibiotics. It is a natural dog food that is nutrient-packed with a blend of superfoods, including organic flaxseed, organic blueberries, and organic sweet potatoes.
Organix Grain-Free Organic Dog Food for Adult Dogs is formulated to meet the nutritional levels established by the AAFCO Dog Food Nutrient Profiles for the maintenance of adult dogs.
The Castor & Pollux Organix Non-GMO Dry Dog Food is a great choice for your pup. This recipe contains no artificial preservatives, flavors or colors and is made without corn, wheat, soy, chickpeas or lentils. Organix also features organic oatmeal and organic barley to help support healthy digestion.
This dog food has been formulated with high-quality ingredients to provide the right nutrition your dog needs to be happy and healthy. The grain-free formula of this dry dog food also includes wholesome fruits and vegetables that have been added as natural.
This is a high-quality dry dog food that is perfect for dogs that are allergic to corn, wheat, or soy.
- USDA-certified organic
- Good-size kibble ideal for small and big dogs
- Great taste
- Grain-free options available
- No flavors or additives
- They only offer brands with just chicken as a source of protein. If your dog is allergic to chicken, it’s not a good fit.
- Not available at all times – You may want to set up auto-shipping with Chewy as it is always ‘temporarily out of stock’ at Amazon.
- Relatively more expensive
- They are packed in small bags, mostly 4-pound bags but there are a few 10-pound bags
$47.76 in stock
Our second pick is also another kibble brand by Castor & Pollux and is called the Organic Grain-Free Turkey & Vegetable Recipe. This formula is made with responsibly raised turkey as the first ingredient and features a blend of seven superfoods like organic quinoa, kale and sweet potatoes.
Consumers describe this dog food as being more pleasurable than many wet food items. It also comes with a pop tab, which is convenient whether at home or on the road. Owners are pleased because they know they’re getting high-quality nutrition and high-quality components that allow them to feed their pets without having to rely on anyone else.
- Ingredients don’t have any chemicals, artificial sweeteners, or additional HGH
- This organix dog food contains minerals and vitamins essential to your pet’s wellbeing
- Produced in America.
- USDA Certified Organic
- Some pets don’t like the smell
The third best all-natural dry dog food kibble is the Vegan Dry Dog Food by PetGuard, a kibble recipe with a generous amount of Omega 3 essential for getting your dog to have a shiny and better fur. Aside from 100% organic proteins, it is also made with healthy organic grains with a mix of responsibly-grown fruits and veggies.
This dog food brand has been praised highly by customers who want their pets to live wonderful life! They give dogs a beautiful, gleaming coat and excellent general health, which you can check for yourself! Your lovely dogs will like that it tastes better.
- This version is recognized from USDA
- It is suitable for the veg.
- It has no compounds, chemicals, corn as well
- It offers omega substances and healthy organic grains.
A veg choice that not all consumers see that is perfect for their pet
$47.05 in stock
Ingredients include an extensive range of vegetables and fruits, organic flaxseed, and organic quinoa. Castor & Pollux is made in the united states and promises only the highest quality ingredients. It’s certified under the National Organic Program of the USDA.
The company recommends turning your dog by adding it in increasing numbers over four or three weeks to stay digestive issues.
The actual organic poultry is great, compared to organic puppy food.
Ingredients incorporate a wide range of organic fruits and vegetables
Produced in the USA.
The first family company sold out to a bigger public company, which attracts concerns to several buyers
Many dogs won’t enjoy this food
$27.99 in stock
TruDog does suggest taking to transition your dog to some raw diet if he’s not utilized for it. TruDog guarantees 100 % satisfaction. They truly are one of the organizations on this list of best organic dog food brands, but many pet owners appear to be somewhat pleased with their line of foods and the corporation.
Even eaters tend to love TruDog Real Meat Organic Dog Food, and owners love knowing they are feeding their dogs such an excellent product. Customers who had made their dog food can feed their pet exactly the nutritionally beneficial ingredients with the hassle.
Does not contain carbohydrates, gluten, chemical additives or fillers
Is 99% real meat, key organs, and lean bone
TruDog delivers a 100% satisfaction guarantee
This is one of the most expensive best organic dog food brands
there’ll be two or three pets that won’t enjoy this food because of powerful odor.
This pet food has no grains and recognized from USDA certification, or it does not have any artificial flavors, colors, or additives. This recipe of the version is away from Newman’s, offers energy, and assists in keeping up their pet’s weight. Constructed to fulfill the AAFCO with essential nutrients, the consumers may feel a great understanding of your lovely dogs is becoming the most wholesome component.
Turkey could be the most widely used flavor, however, it is seen as obtainable with liver, chicken, turkey, poultry. Dogs love that food, and also the puppies will lick the bowl as well. Newman’s brand is among many new brands on the market at this moment, and the corporation’s reputation is very good as well.
Grain-free, along with USDA recognition.
No synthetic flavors, colors, or additives
Offers more minerals and supports pets for keeping their ideal bodyweight
readily available in several yummy flavors, permitting users to present your dog food.
Many pets can own some stools while still eating that stuff.
This version seems savory and not attract more than many other brands
Buy on Chewy
First 5 Ingredients: Venison, Lamb, Lamb Liver, Venison Liver, and Venison Lung
Are you looking for the best organic dog food for allergies? This venison blend dinner patties recipe is a fantastic choice for your allergic pooch as it contains novel proteins. The recipe has real meat from grass-fed venison and goat as the first ingredient and protein source. It is crafted with your dog’s ancestral diet in mind with all-natural ingredients for tastiness and health.
The raw dog food recipe also includes bones and organs as well as certified-organic fruits and veggies for optimal nutrition with the ease of freeze-dried preparation. It is complete and balanced enhanced with probiotics for health digestion which is good for dogs with sensitive tummies.
It contains 45% protein, 30% fat, 5% fiber, and 5% moisture.
- High protein
- Ideal for allergies
- Supports overall health
- For all breed sizes
- For adults only
First 5 Ingredients: Deboned Chicken, Chicken Meal, Brown Rice, Quinoa, and Turkey Meal
This dry dog food with real meat recipe from Merrick Pet Care is our best organic dog food for small breeds. Merrick classic healthy grains contains real deboned chicken as the first ingredient which is a high-quality protein source that supports lean, strong muscle growth and development. This small breed recipe is what your dog needs to thrive!
The recipe features healthy whole grains including quinoa which promotes healthy digestion for dogs with sensitivities. In addition, the dog food is enriched with glucosamine and chondroitin to support your small breed dog’s healthy hips and joints. It also contains omega-3 & 6 fatty acids from flaxseeds and sunflower oil that promote a healthy skin and lustrous coat.
It contains 27% protein, 16% fat, 3.5% fiber, and 11% moisture.
- Whole grains
- Perfect for small dog breeds
- Supports overall body health
- Some dogs are allergic to grains
First 5 Ingredients: Deboned Chicken, Chicken Meal, Oatmeal, Ground Meal, and Peas
If you want to power up your puppy with the best organic dog food for puppies in the market, Wellness has what you need. This salmon and oatmeal recipe is specially formulated to provide whole-body nutritional support for your growing puppy with salmon as the first ingredient.
This natural dry food for pups is prepared using carefully chosen ingredients including wholesome grains, omega fatty acids, DHA for brain development & eye health, vital vitamins, and antioxidants for overall body health. I also like glucosamine and probiotics inclusion that support bone & joint and digestive health. You can be sure your pup is getting the right food.
The recipe contains 29% protein, 18% fat, 4.5% fiber, and 10% moisture.
- Specially made for puppies
- Promotes overall body nutrition & health
- Natural ingredients
- Excellent palate
- Causes sensitivity for some pups
- Not for large breed pups
First 5 Ingredients: Dehydrated Turkey, Organic Oats, Dehydrated Potatoes, Organic Flaxseeds, and Dehydrated Carrots
Probably the best organic dog food with grains in our review and the organic dog food market, this Whole Grains dog food from the Honest Kitchen is a fantastic choice. This formula has dehydrated turkey as the first ingredient which is an excellent protein source and very tasty. This cage-free turkey has been dehydrated to retain the freshness and nutritional value.
Even best, I love the whole grains in this recipe that are easily digestible as well as simple garden produce for increased tastiness. It also has moderate fat content which makes it an ideal choice for senior dogs and adult-dog maintenance. If you need an affordable formula developed for sensitive pooches who need high-quality diet, this is your go-to brand and recipe.
This organic dog food with grains contains 22% protein, 15% fat, 5% fiber, and 8.6% moisture.
- Moderate calories & protein
- Dehydrated & minimally processed
- Premium ingredients
- Easy to prepare
- For all breeds & sizes adult dogs
- Not for puppies
- Needs protein addition
First five Ingredients: Lamb Meal, Whole Grain Brown Rice, Cracked Pearled Barley, Oatmeal, and Grain Sorghum
Lastly, I couldn’t call this review complete without mentioning the best organic dog food for large breeds as I am a dog parent of one – an AmStaff. Large dog breeds need high quality protein dog food to help build lean, strong muscles. This particular recipe has lamb meal as the first ingredient which is rich in protein content specially made for your dog.
I like the use of premium ingredients in this dog food diet which is enriched with vitamins and minerals, antioxidants, and fatty acids to support immune health and healthy skin and shiny coat. In addition, the recipe includes glucosamine and chondroitin to support joint and bone health, as well as probiotics for digestive health. Diamond Naturals is aimed at helping your doggie maintain an active lifestyle.
The recipe contains 23% protein, 13% fat, 3.5% fiber, and 10% moisture.
- Specially prepared for large breeds
- Excellent taste
- Recipe for puppies available
- Good value for money
- Meat meal is the first ingredient
- Online batches are low quality
Buying Guide for the Best Organic/Natural Dog Food
What is organic dog food?
The Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO) defines organic as, “a product that has been produced through approved methods that integrate cultural, biological, and mechanical practices that foster cycling of resources, promote ecological balance, and conserve biodiversity.”
Oftentimes, you’ll see the term “100% organic,” which means that all ingredients in the food are certified organic. If pet food is labeled “organic,” this means that at least 95% of the ingredients are certified organic, while the remaining 5% can be non-organic agricultural products.
Factors to consider when picking the best organic dog food:
- Protein source: Go for organic kibble brands that use animal-based protein from sources such as poultry, fish, turkey, and beef. Other plant-based protein sources such as soybeans lack essential amino acids that are only available from animal sources. Also, plant-based proteins are more difficult for pooches to digest and may result in stomach issues.
- Fats and oils: Choose an organic dry food for dogs that has healthy fats and oils such as Omega-3 and 6. These essential fatty acids help to promote a healthy coat, support the immune system and maintain joint health. Avoid brands that use cheaper fillers such as corn, wheat or soybean oil as they provide little to no nutritional value.
- Vitamins and minerals: As with all dog food, it’s important to check the label to see that the organic kibble you’ve selected contains the right blend of vitamins and minerals to support your pup’s overall health. Some essential nutrients include vitamin A for healthy skin and eyesight, vitamin B12 for a healthy nervous system, and calcium for strong bones and teeth.
- Cost: Organic dog food can be more expensive than regular kibble, so it’s important to find a brand that fits both your pup’s needs and your budget. Look for coupons or sales on your favorite brands, or consider making your own organic dog food at home.
- Now that you know a little bit more about organic dog food, you can decide if it’s the right choice for your pup. If you do choose to feed your dog organic food, be sure to select a high-quality brand that uses animal-based protein and healthy fats and oils. And
- Ingredients: As with any food, you should always read the label to see what ingredients are in the product. Look for organic ingredients that are high in protein and low in fillers. Avoid ingredients with plant-based protein as
- Go for Certified organics: Don’t fall for fakes. In order for a product to be truly organic, it must be certified by a third-party organization. The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) has a strict set of rules and regulations that food must meet in order to receive the USDA Organic label. When you see this label, you can be sure that the food contains at least 95% organic ingredients.
Types of organic dog food:
- 100% Totally organic: as mentioned before, all ingredients are certified organic
- 95% organic: at least 95% of the ingredients are certified organic while the remaining 5% can be non-organic agricultural products
- Made with organic ingredients: at least 70% of the ingredients are certified organic
Totally organic and 95% organic dog food will have the USDA Organic label on the packaging while products that are made with organic ingredients will have a “Made with” statement followed by the specific organic ingredients.
To be certified organic, dog food must meet the standards set by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). The USDA’s National Organic Program (NOP) establishes the rules and regulations for what can be called organic.
Organic ingredients in dog food must be:
- Grown without the use of synthetic pesticides, herbicides, or fertilizers
- Not genetically modified
- Produced without sewage sludge
- Not irradiated
- Grown on land that has had no prohibited substances, like synthetic pesticides or herbicides, applied for a period of three years before the crop is harvested
- Animals raised for organic meat, eggs, and dairy cannot be given growth hormones or routine antibiotics and must have access to the outdoors.
- Organic dog food may also not contain artificial preservatives, flavors, or colors.
Organic vs non-organic dog food:
Slightly higher in nutrients: Organically grown foods have been found to have higher nutrient levels than their conventionally grown counterparts. This is due to the use of synthetic pesticides and herbicides, which can deplete the soil of essential nutrients.
No synthetic pesticides or herbicides: As mentioned before, organic ingredients cannot be grown with synthetic pesticides or herbicides. Because organic ingredients are grown without the use of synthetic pesticides or herbicides, they are often more expensive than their conventionally grown counterparts.
So, is organic dog food better?
Taste: Many pet parents report that their dogs seem to prefer the taste of organic dog food. Studies have also found that organic chicken tastes better than conventional chicken.
Higher nutrient levels: As mentioned before, organic ingredients have been found to have higher nutrient levels than their conventionally grown counterparts.
No synthetic pesticides or herbicides: Because organic ingredients cannot be grown with synthetic pesticides or herbicides, they are often safer for your dog to consume.
Ingredients: Organic ingredients must meet stricter standards than non-organic ingredients, so you can be sure that your dog is getting a higher quality product.
There are pros and cons to feeding your dog organic food.
- No synthetic pesticides, herbicides, or fertilizers
- No GMOs
- No artificial preservatives, flavors, or colors
- Animals raised for meat, eggs, and dairy are not given growth hormones or routine antibiotics and have access to the outdoors
- Can be more expensive than non-organic dog food
- There is no guarantee that organic food is nutritionally superior to non-organic food
- Limited options available in the market
A Stanford Study in 2012 found little evidence to support the case that organic food is helpful to humans.
Another 2017 study published in the National Library of Medicine concluded that ” organic food consumption may reduce the risk of allergic disease and of overweight and obesity” and found evidence that organic sources of food contained more Omega -3 fatty acids.
So, which ones are better really, organic or non-organic:
Organic dog food can be seen as a healthier option for your furry friend as it does not contain any synthetic pesticides, herbicides or fertilizers which may be harmful to their health. Furthermore, organic meat, eggs and dairy products come from animals that have not been given growth hormones or routine antibiotics. NON-Organic dog food on the other hand is not as heavily regulated in terms of what ingredients can be used. This means that some harmful chemicals and additives may be present in the food. However, non-organic food is generally cheaper than organic options.
So, which type of food should you choose for your dog? It really depends
Non-organic dog food might be a better option if you are on a budget as it is often cheaper than organic brands.
Whether you choose to feed your dog organic or non-organic food, the most important thing is that you are giving them a balanced and nutritious diet. If you have any concerns about what kind of food is best for your pet, be sure to speak with your veterinarian.
How to make organic dog food
If you want to feed your canine buddy with an alternative diet, making your own dog food is the best option. However, you must ensure you use high-quality ingredients and feed the right ratios and feeding schedule to prevent obesity, malnutrition, and risks of diseases.
Here is my favorite recipe comprising of a protein, carb, and veggie:
1/3 organic chicken breast (skinless), 1/3 organic green beans, 1/3 organic brown rice
- Bake the chicken breast till it’s clear of juice
- Boil the beans to cook fully
- Chop the chicken into your dog’s bite-sizes
- Mix chicken, rice, and beans together
Even a picky eater will not help but eat this food. If he looks unsure of this new meal, you can put it in the food processor and serve him the puree.
Leading dog food brands/companies
With the flooding number of dog food companies or brands in the market today, it may be hard to know which offers the best dog food quality. Furthermore, the appealing marketing hypes they use can make most dog parents and enthusiasts crazy and confused.
What I advise many dog owners is that high price does not promise high quality. In any case, it might be a technique to recover the high cost of production and advertisement. If you want to know the dog food brand that has your pooch in mind, check the ingredients list and nutritional info.
Here are the 7 leading dog food brands or companies in my opinion:
- Taste of the Wild – Offers the best budget dog foods without compromising on quality using meat as the first ingredient always.
- Royal Canin – Manufactures dog food recipes that are specifically prepared based on your dog’s life stage and breed size.
- ORIJEN – Makes top dry dog food recipes that cater for special needs of different dogs, in addition to different sizes and ages.
- Blue Buffalo – Offers a wide range of dog foods made specifically for puppies based on their different needs regardless of the breed size.
- Hill’s Science Diet – Stands out as the best dog food brand with wet or canned dog diets made by nutritionists and veterinarians.
- Wellness Pet Food Company – Prepares the best dog food diets specifically made for small dog to cater for their different dietary needs with small size kibbles and enough calories.
- Purina – Makes the best large and giant dog food recipes with their nutritional needs in mind.
Regardless of what common doctor advocated these pet foods, you want to know about other consumers will grab more from puppies’ stuff results, evaluations and lists that you utilize for picking up the following stuff for your pet, and make sure you get your due diligence or consult a canine doctor, or meticulously analyze the different substances and prepare for the origin and producing area. Do not forget that nobody pet food is best for your lovely dogs at this moment. Please choose these best organic dog food versions in the list previously and share them.
- Rombach, M.; Dean, D.L. It Keeps the Good Boy Healthy from Nose to Tail: Understanding Pet Food Attribute Preferences of US Consumers. Animals 2021, 11, 3301. https://doi.org/10.3390/ani11113301
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Hi there! My name is Ben Domb, an owner of two pets and I am one of the co-founders of OurPets HQ. I have several years of experience as a pet care professional in the New England region having spent time in various roles including a stint at a veterinary hospital in Upstate New York, Syracuse area. I am a certified pet care professional and mostly spend my time researching pet nutrition and sharing my thoughts in various blogs and columns. With quarantine and COVID restrictions, I have been spending a lot of time a lot with my dogs and cat and loving it! I also run a small consulting business providing advice to parents on pet nutrition, and especially safe homemade options to try. You can reach me at email@example.com