Top 10 Dog Food Brands in the UK Today
Hi I’m Richard from Mcfurrys and today I am going to share my view on the Top 10 Dog Food Brands that are on sale today in the UK.
I was going to start my post with the usual rant I have about how we need to feed good quality pet food and how the saying “you are what you eat” applies to dogs also but I just got back from Tesco’s and polished off a whole bag of 4 Mars cookies.
I must admit I was disappointed with the cookies as in my opinion they did not taste like a Mars bar in the slightest and at 204 calories each I have stuffed away 816 Calories in ten minutes – no wonder why I am bouncing off the walls at the moment.
Back to the post at hand, and let me apologise as the post is way longer than I expected it to be. I have compiled a list of the top 10 dog foods in the UK based on the overall score for each brand which is based on their ingredients only. 7 of the brands score 5 /5 and 3 score 4.9/5 and they lose out on the top score because they contain some grains or potato.
AATU 80/20 from Pet food UK claims to be “THE WORLD’S FIRST SINGLE PROTEIN SOURCE 80/20 DIET FOR DOGS” and I agree with this statement. While all the brands in the list are excellent and apart from AATU they contain more than one source of protein.
AATU follow their Super 8 ethos which means their dog food is a unique combination ingredients consisting of 8 fruits, 8 herbs, 8 vegetables, 8 botanical’s and is grain free and hypo-allergenic and and made in the UK.
AATU is a Dry extruded ( mixed then baked into a kibble ) complete dog food that is suitable for all dog breeds and while it is not a full life stage food it is recommended for dogs from 12 months to old age and scores 5/5
Average cost of AATU is £60 for 10kg with the average daily feeding cost based on a 20kg dog is £1.12 a day and for more information you can visit the AATU website
AATU do the following Varieties
Salmon & Herring
They do have a handy stockists map on their website so if your lucky to live near an interdependent pet shop that stocks it your all set however like the majority of us wanting to try AATU we have to go online so I have included a few links for you.
Akela 80:20 from Wholeprey is a bit of a shock in this list, it is the cheapest of the top 10 dog food brands in the UK while still being a 5/5 rated dog food.
Wholeprey is a UK supplier of complete dog food, treats, supplements and accessories and owned by the Suffolk Group and as stated above its the cheapest in the running and it’s list of ingredients is sufficient to warrant its rating and I must admit I am impressed by what they offer.
As a new dog food brand they look to have the customers wishes at heart as they have many options to choose from including different packet sizes and 3 Varieties
Fish Feast 80:20
Suffolk Duck 80:20
And they have 3 different kibble sizes too which are called Small Paws, Big Paws and original.
What’s so special about them you ask? well a few things come to mind, one is their food is a complete life stage meaning it can be feed from weaning to old age and another plus is they offer samples, they are not free but at less than a pound for a 100g sample you cant go wrong.
This might shock you but Akela is Working Dog Food and as such is VAT free in the UK, when most people think of working dog food they see images of cheap poor quality dog food made to be feed in large amounts to dogs working in the fields all day – let me assure you that this is not the case with Akela.
In the UK if a dog food manufacture states the food is for working dogs it is automatically rated as VAT free regardless of the ingredients resulting in the company saving time and hassle dealing with VAT and and allowing the customer to save 20% on RRP.
Does Akela cost £60 a bag? nope! Does Akela cost £50 a bag? nope! Akela costs…wait for it..£39.00 for a 10kg bag!!
That’s impressive and I sure do hope they can keep the price at this level for if they can I foresee this time next year they could be the number one British made brand of dog food in our top 10 dog food brands list.
At that price the daily feeding based on a 20kg dog will be 93 pence a day if you follow their recommended feeding guide.
You can read our review of Akela 80:20 here
Eden dog food
Eden is another UK made 80:20 dog food made by Eden Holistic Pet Foods.
Years ago when me and my partner was running out first pet shop this brand was all the rage in the north west of England, it had everything people was looking for in a top quality dog food.
Eden was able to compete on price with the likes of Orijen which was the best known 80:20 dog food at the time and customers loved the clear no frills packaging that Eden employed as it showed the company took a holistic approach to not just the food but the packaging too, however we did not stock it.
If you asked me last week while I was still gathering research for this blog I would have told you that Eden was one of my most favourite brands. However, thanks to Akela I have seen that a truly 80:20 dog food can be produced without the high price tag but still having all the frills, after all an aesthetically pleasing first impression to most people can be a make or break for a dog food.
Don’t get me wrong Eden dog food deserves its position in the top 10 dog food brands in the UK as it’s ingredients warrant it and it is an established brand.
Eden has 3 Varieties of dog food
Multi-meat And Fish 15kg
Catch Of The Day Fish 12kg
Country Cuisine 12kg
and they have a working dog version of all three meaning these versions are VAT free. Now after checking the ingredients of a normal pack and a VAT free pack they are identical but that’s nothing new in the dog food world but what I dont understand is if the ingredients are the same and in the same order with the same percentages why there is a 1% difference between protein and fat levels and believe me I have checked and double checked and I cant see a difference between the versions.
Another issue I have is the customer saving, Eden look to be only passing half the VAT free saving to the customer for one of the varieties only, a regular bag of Eden Orignal 80:20 is £55 but the working dog version is £49.99 and on the other two Varieties the working dog VAT free version is £1 more than the normal ones!! no savings to the customer there something is wrong.
Doing a test checkout shows no VAT applied to the 3 types of working food and VAT at 20% for the normal versions – there is something seriously wrong with their pricing and for that reason alone I would not recommend Eden dog food even through it remains in the top 10 dog food brands in the UK.
Daily feeding cost based on a 20kg dog is 66 pence a day.
gentle dog food
Gentle dog food from from Elite Dogs Limited is another new comer to the the UK market, this is one of the three non 5/5 rated dog foods in the top 10 dog food brands but still has a respectable 4.9/5 score.
Even if you dont want to try this brand I do urge you to visit their website as it is fantastic and does explain the manufacturing method very well and you can have a peek at their Gentle Chop2Bowl I cant stop laughing at the idea.
Back to the food, unlike most dry dog foods that are Dry extruded Gentle dog food is Cold Pressed. This means the food mix is not baked dry into a kibble but is mixed together and pressed together under pressure and formed in to pellets.
The main advantage to the cold press technique is that the vitamins are not destroyed during the process so an artificial vitamin complex does not need to be added and the quality of the meat is preserved.
An other advantage is the carbon footprint is much lower to manufacture a cold pressed dog food compared to a dry extruded which should please many people.
The only down sides to cold pressed dog food is its shelf life is not as long as extruded food but but I am sure you read the best before date before you feed your dog anyway so this can be a moot point and then there are the looks of the pellets, they can look odd but you need to remember they are pressed not baked.
The slight drop in the score of the dog food is not due to being cold pressed it is due to the small amount of rice in the food, most likely a binding agent. This food is a complete life stage dog food so it can be feed from weaning to old age
Daily feeding cost based on a 20kg dog is 90 pence a day.
you can get it from the Gentle website £57 for 15kg
guru dog food
Guru dog food from Guru Pet Food like Gentle above is yet another new comer to the market and being the last cold pressed offering in our top 10 dog food brands.
Like Gentle it scores 4.9/5 due to the addition of rice however the food is fantastic and the price is reasonable for a 14kg bag you cant go wrong with this full life stage dog food.
Guru dog food has all the benefits listed for Gentle with ingredients that are very close. If you are looking to feed a cold pressed dog food then Guru might have the edge because they are offering samples for £2 which include a 10% discount to use against a 5kg or 14kg bag – well worth it in my opinion.
Again their website is fantastic and worth a look they even have some product videos.
Daily feeding cost based on a 20kg dog is £1.71 a day
You can get Guru dog from form them direct £48 for 14kg
Millies Wolfheart dog food is made in Yorkshire with Millies first product introduced in September 2012 so they have a 4 year track record.
This is a 5/5 extruded 80:20 dog food in a clear packaging and is Hypoallergenic and grain free, well worthy of being in the top 10 dog food brands.
They do have a large selection of dog treats and other ranges of non 80:20 dog foods and they run special offers on their website.
Everyone I have talked to regarding Millies Wolfheart 80:20 has had nothing but praise for the product. It is not advertised as much as some of the other brands listed but they do run a breeder program.
They have 200g samples on sale for £2 which is not bad as most samples from other brands are only 100g . Their dog food comes in different bag 4 sizes but according to their site only 8 places in the UK including themselves are listed to resell it so unless you get it online it might be difficult to acquire.
Daily feeding cost based on a 20kg dog is 89 pence.
You can get this fantastic food direct form Millies Wolfheart £56.99 for 14.5kg
Naturea Regional is a European brand of extruded dog food which scores 4.9/5 and only lost a part point due to the addition of sweet potato.
Naturea Petfoods is a Portuguese company and was founded in 2010 so they do have a proven track record in pet foods. the meat content is very high at 62% when adjusted from all sources.
I believe if they substituted the sweat potato for a lower carbohydrate source they would be able to make it into the 80:20 bracket.
If you happen to be in Belgium or the Netherlands your made up as their store finder shows it’s everywhere but if you dont want to go to Europe for your dog food then your limited to online stores only in the UK – and there are not many.
This is not a life stage food and is only suitable for dogs 12 months to 7 years
Although Naturea Regional can be difficult to source it is still included in the top 10 dog food brands because it is available in the UK and has a very high score.
Feeding cost based on a 20kg dog is 79 pence a day
cost for a 12kg bag is around £59
Truline dog food is another new brand that is in the top 10 dog food brands list, it is made by Pero.
Truline is a complete life stage dog food so it can be feed from weaning to old age and scores 5/5
Turline dog food is the only 5/5 dog food in the list that is not an 80:20 formula, it sits at 75:25 ratio for meat to fruit/veg.
While this slight drop in meat content has not affected their overall score I believe this has contributed to the fact that this food has the highest fat content of all the foods listed at 21.7%.
Please don’t get to hung up about fat in a dogs diet, unless he has a medical condition the fat content is not a problem in moderation and this percentage is made up from the natural fat in the meat, fish oils ( omega 3 and 6 source ) and the eggs.
Turline dog food is still grain free and hypo-allergenic and well deserves its place in the list.
Pero have developed 2 varieties of this 5/5 dog food.
Fish Variety 12kg
Meat & Fish Variety 12kg
Simpsons Premium is a long established 80:20 dog food and was introduced around 3 years ago, since it first appeared Simpsons Premium has been applying pressure for the top 80:20 spot.
Simpsons Premium has had a track record of being the best branded complete dog food that is made in the UK and only now is it facing stiff competition to that awesome bragging rights.
Everyone that knows about the super premium 80:20 range of dog foods knows Simpsons Premium is fantastic and can’t be faulted, the company has a great relationship with its customers and was the first to raise the bar in British made dog food.
The fact that Simpsons Premium has remained the best British made dog food for 3 years running is outstanding but if it was not for it’s Canadian competitor it would have been the best in the UK for the last 3 years. A true champion in the British dog food market Simpsons Premium earns second spot in the top 10 dog food brands.
Simpsons Premium has 3 varieties and multiple pack sizes including sample packs
fish & turkey
This is not a full life stage dog food, it is suitable for dogs 12 months to old age but they do have puppy varieties.
Orijen dog food is made in Canada and exported all over the world and is the “world heavyweight champion” in dog food.
Orijen has enjoyed the number one spot in the top 10 dog food brands for years and it will take another manufacture a lot of hard work to topple them, in fact Orijen is often the number one dog food in every country that stocks it.
I know there has been a lot of discussion regarding Orijen over the years and after all it’s a 5/5 dog food and 6 others in this list also score the same. The score is based on ingredients only and does not take into account were the ingredients come from or the companies dedication to it’s customers and the animals used to make it – if it was then Orijen would score 10/5
Orijen stands out form the rest for many reasons, the company works with it’s own farmers directly and also runs their own farms. When they say their meat is fresh they mean it.
Most dog food manufactures in the UK use a commercial outsource company to make their dog food and it will be making both low, mid and high end foods for many brands. If you look at the ingredients of may different foods with the same score you will notice the ingredients are nearly identical baring some bespoke additions.
Orijen makes everything themselves and they know when and were an ingredient came from and how the livestock was treated ( possibly even the chickens name ), they even have links on their website showing the farmers with their bio’s ect. You can read it here and let me tell you its worth it.
Orijen is the most expensive dog food in our top 10 dog food brands however you are paying for a product that you know has the most ethical and humane treatment towards it’s livestock and the freshest ingredients which can be backed up if you ask them.
Orijen has 3 varieties with large and small pack sizes
This is not a full life stage dog food, it is suitable for dogs 12 months to old age but they do have puppy varieties.
Daily feeding cost based on a 20kg dog is 84 pence per day
Orijen is available form Amazon £37.99 for 6.8kg
You can also get Orijen from Monster Pet Supplies £19 for 2.27kg
and from Zooplus for £59.99 for 13kg
Many people like to know the make up of the food they are feeding their dogs, I have included below some charts showing the nutrition breakdown for each brand in our top 10 dog food brands list.
What does stand out is both the cold pressed foods have a much higher carbohydrate content than the extruded brands at over 50% of their nutritional breakdown this is due to the added Rice that they use in the food.
Displaying the ratio of Carbohydrates, Ash, Protein, Fibre and Fat for all 10 brands.
My Final Thoughts
First let me thank you for reaching the end of the post as it was a lot longer than I intended.
Each of the dog foods have earned their place in the top 10 dog food brands, Orijen remains number one and is unlikely to move from that spot.
Eden dog food will be a good choice once they fix their pricing issues with the VAT free versions they have.
Lastly we come to Akela, I have heard back from Akela and they advise they have no intention of increasing their pricing for their outstandingly awesome dog food -baring of course any increases in the price of the raw ingredients in the future. I believe they stand a good chance in knocking Simpsons Premium for the top British made dog food title.
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