Finding the right food has quickly become a nightmare. There are more brands on the market than you can reasonably count, and the product variations are mesmerizing – grain-fee, reduced fat, limited ingredients, exotic protein, and so on.
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We’re here to simplify matters with our unbiased guides to the best and worst pet food brands out there. You just sit back, take it all in, and then decide what’s right for you and your dog.
Here’s our look at Wellness Dog Food reviews, ingredient quality, recall history, company info and more.
At a Glance: 3 Formulas Featuring Heavily in our Wellness Dog Food Review
- Wellness CORE Natural Grain Free
- Wellness Simple Natural Limited Ingredient
- Wellness TruFood Baked Blends
Note: The links above take you to more information, current prices and customer reviews on Chewy.
Contents & Quick Navigation
- Our Overview
- Video Summary
- Wellness Dog Food Ingredients
- Discussion of Most Important Ingredients - Good and Bad
- Wellness CORE Dog Food Guaranteed Analysis
- Wellness Dog Food Recall History
- Formulas Wellness Offer
- Flavors Wellness Offer
- Sizes Available
- What Dogs Is Wellness For or Suited to?
- What Dogs Might do Better on A Different Brand?
- Wellness Pet Food Reviews
- What Others are Saying
- Our Wellness Dog Food Rating
- Top Picks For Our Dogs
Wellness offers a wide variety of premium-grade wet and dry dog food. They have selections suitable for dogs of many different sizes and stages in life, as well as for varying nutritional and allergy requirements.
The company claims to use nothing but quality ingredients, avoiding the following in favor of wholesome, natural foods and supplements:
A wide range of size options is available to suit your buying habits. This is not the most expensive brand on the market, but it is far from being a bargain brand.
Wellness projects a very good corporate image with attractive and comprehensive websites that include a consumer feedback feature. They also have a YouTube channel with a lot of interesting content.
Here's what you need to know:
After researching the company, one comes away with the feeling they can be trusted. They certainly seem to have a large group of brand adherents, and those who purchase their products seem highly satisfied far more often than not. We, like many others, do recommend this pet food.
Who Makes Wellness Dog Food and Where is it Made?
Wellness dog food is made by Wellpet LLC, an umbrella company headquartered near Boston, Massachusetts. The company sprang from an earlier dog biscuit manufacturer called Old Mother Hubbard, which itself began from a bakery founded in 1873. Wellness has existed as a brand since 1997.
In addition to an extensive line of dog food, Wellness also sells a cat food line. Other Wellpet brands include Old Mother Hubbard, Holistic Select, Eagle Pack, and Sojo’s.
Here’s a short video from the manufacturer discussing their manufacturing process, and commitment to quality food.
Wellness Dog Food Ingredients
These the ingredients for Wellness CORE's Original Formula, quoted from WellnessPetFood.com:
Deboned Turkey, Turkey Meal, Chicken Meal, Peas, Potatoes, Dried Ground Potatoes, Chicken Fat (preserved with Mixed Tocopherols), Tomato Pomace, Chicken Liver, Natural Chicken Flavor, Ground Flaxseed, Salmon Oil, Spinach, Vitamin E Supplement, Broccoli, Carrots, Choline Chloride, Parsley, Apples, Blueberries, Kale, Sweet Potatoes, Taurine, Mixed Tocopherols added to preserve freshness, Zinc Proteinate, Zinc Sulfate, Glucosamine Hydrochloride, Chondroitin Sulfate, Calcium Carbonate, Niacin, Ferrous Sulfate, Iron Proteinate, Beta-Carotene, Vitamin A Supplement, Copper Sulfate, Thiamine Mononitrate, Copper Proteinate, Manganese Proteinate, Manganese Sulfate, d-Calcium Pantothenate, Sodium Selenite, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Riboflavin, Chicory Root Extract, Yucca Schidigera Extract, Vitamin D3 Supplement, Biotin, Calcium Iodate, Vitamin B12 Supplement, Folic Acid, Ascorbic Acid (Vitamin C), Dried Lactobacillus plantarum Fermentation Product, Dried Enterococcus faecium Fermentation Product, Dried Lactobacillus casei Fermentation Product, Dried Lactobacillus acidophilus Fermentation Product, Rosemary Extract, Green Tea Extract, Spearmint Extract.
Discussion of Most Important Ingredients - Good and Bad
The ingredients in Wellness CORE dry dog food are generally favorable, although there are a couple that may be worth singling out for further discussion.
But first, the good:
And the not-so-good:
Wellness CORE Dog Food Guaranteed Analysis
Quoted from WellnessPetFood.com
- Crude Protein (Min) 34.00%
- Crude Fat (Min) 16.00%
- Crude Fiber (Max) 4.00%
- Moisture (Max) 10.00%
- Calcium (Max) 2.00%
- Phosphorus (Max) 1.40%
- Vitamin E (Min) 400 IU/kg
- Omega-6 Fatty Acids* (Min) 3.25%
- Omega-3 Fatty Acids* (Min) 0.50%
- Glucosamine* (Min) 250 mg/kg
- Chondroitin Sulfate* (Min) 200 mg/kg
- Beta-Carotene* (Min) 5 mg/kg
*Not recognized as an essential nutrient by the AAFCO Dog Food Nutrient Profiles.
Wellness Dog Food Recall History
15lb, 30lb, and 5kg bags of Wellness Complete Health Super5Mix Large Breed Puppy with a Best By date of Jan. 9-11, 2013, were recalled due to the possibility of salmonella. All batches were tested for salmonella before shipping and tested negative.
However, the food was made at a third-party facility linked to a salmonella contamination. Wellness issued a voluntary recall of the pet food as a precaution and has since stopped having food produced at that facility.
12lb bags of Wellness Small Breed Adult Health Dry Dog Food with a Best By date of Aug. 18, 2013, were recalled due to a possible moisture contamination. The issue appeared to pose no risk to dogs, but may have caused the batch to go moldy prematurely. Wellness offered replacement bags to anyone who bought from this production run.
But should you be concerned?
Both of these recalls appear to be minor incidents and were well handled by Wellpet. Neither incident should be any cause for concern to a potential buyer.
Formulas Wellness Offer
- Complete Health Grain-free: Puppy, adult and small breed formulas
- Toy Breed Complete Health
- Small Breed Complete Health: Adult, puppy, senior and healthy weight formulas
- Complete Health: Puppy, adult and senior formulas
- Large Breed Complete Health: Puppy and adult formulas
- Core Air Dried: Puppy and adult formulas
- Core Grain-free: Puppy, small breed, large breed and reduced fat formulas
- Simple Limited Ingredient: Adult and small breed formulas
- Baked Blends TruFood: Puppy, adult and small breed formulas
- Complete Health: Adult and senior formulas
- Core Hearty Cuts
- Petite Entrees Recipes
- Chunks and Gravy Recipes
- Core Wet Recipes: Puppy, adult and weight management formulas
- Core Chunky Centers
- Core 95% Wet Recipes
- Simple Limited Ingredient Diet
- TruFood Tasty Pairings
- TruFood Complements
- Mixers and Toppers
Flavors Wellness Offer
Wellness uses a wide variety of protein sources in their pet food, sometimes on their own, and sometimes in combinations. These vary by formula line and include: Turkey, Chicken, Beef, Whitefish, Duck, Venison, Lamb, Salmon, Tuna, Cod, Herring.
Many of Wellness’s offerings come blended with non-meat ingredients such as: Carrots, Pumpkin, Green Beans, Potato, Sweet Potatoes, Oatmeal, Broccoli, Spinach, Kale, Cranberries, Red Peppers, Brown Rice, Peas, Chickpeas, Flaxseed.
Many grain-free options are also available.
Depending on the formula, the following sizes may be available:
Dry dog food: 4 Pounds, 12 Pounds, 13 Pounds, 15 Pounds, 22 Pounds, 24 Pounds, 26 Pounds, 30 Pounds
Wet food sizes include: 3 Ounce, 6 Ounce, 12 Ounce, 12.5 Ounce, 13.2 Ounce
What Dogs Is Wellness For or Suited to?
What Dogs Might do Better on A Different Brand?
Wellness Pet Food Reviews
In the following section, we take a closer look at 3 of the most popular of Wellness dog foods offerings, discussing their overall quality and consider their pros and cons.
This offering from the CORE line of products contains a blend of protein sources including turkey and chicken, and also adds in salmon oil and a mix of fruits and vegetables. There are no fillers or meat by-product listed among the ingredients, neither are there artificial ingredients of any sort.
It’s a blend especially for adult dogs, and Wellness warns it is so palatable that your dog may try to eat more than its share. It is available in a range of sizes from 4 to 26 Pounds, which is great for the consumer; you can choose your size based on the size and quantity of dogs you’re feeding.
The ingredients list a wide variety of nutrient sources, making this an apparently very healthy choice for your dog. Feeding this should provide a well-balanced diet suitable to a dog without any specific health or wellness issues.
From the Simple line of dog food products, this formula lives up to its name, having noticeably fewer ingredients than many other Wellness offerings. This particular blend has just one source of protein, namely turkey. This may help for anyone trying to isolate an allergy, or simply eliminate red meat from the dog’s diet.
Pay attention if your dog is a sensitive one:
The lack of gluten and grains of any kind should be of benefit to dogs with sensitive stomachs. Non-meat ingredients are also kept to a minimum; there are no berries or fruits, save for tomato pomace. There seem to more than enough supplements to make up for their absence, however.
Owners may appreciate the variety of bag sizes, it being available in 4.5, 10.5, and 26 pound bags. It is marginally higher in calories than the CORE blend described above, but not enough to make weight gain a concern.
The TruFood Blends are available in a variety of flavor profiles, and each one combines a dizzying array of readily identifiable ingredients. Dog owners who prefer a more natural approach to nutrition will appreciate seeing lentils, flaxseed, pumpkin, ginger and more listed on the side of the bag.
Being able to choose from chicken, lamb and salmon-based formulas allow the chance to vary the diet, or find a favorite and stick with it. The line also includes wet foods and treats made in the same all-natural manner.
Bag size is limited to either 3 pounds or 18 pounds, but this may be good enough for many people. The kibble is baked, and Wellness touts that TruFood blends have 70% more raw protein than typical kibble.
What Others are Saying
Looking specifically at the CORE line of dry kibble, this site has rated Wellness very highly. They endorse the list of major ingredients and consider this an above average dry dog food. They recommend the product without hesitation.
RATING: 5 Stars (out of 5)
Dog Food Guru:
This site has reviewed several Wellness product lines. Their overall feeling is that these are high-quality products, though they are concerned about the use of peas, flaxseed, and rye flour in certain formulas. They recommend both the CORE and Simple varieties.
RATING: 5 Stars (out of 5)
Chewy is a great resource for genuine feedback from previous buyers and current users of pretty much any physical product, and that includes dog food. Click here to read reviews and comments on Wellness dog food at Chewy.com
Our Wellness Dog Food Rating
Wellness by Wellpet gives every indication of being a truly premium-grade dog food. The ingredients seem to be high quality (evidently they were once sued for using the term “human-grade” – and won!) ingredients that provide excellent nutrition.
While certain dogs with highly specialized needs may not get what they require from Wellness, it seems safe to say that there is a blend to satisfy nearly every taste, body type, age and sensitivity.
Looking at the company, Wellpet seems to do all the right things. They reacted with an extreme level of caution regarding both recalls with which they were involved, and respond to consumer questions and complaints on their website in a direct and concerned manner.
The bottom line is this:
As for us, we would not hesitate to recommend these products to virtually any dog owner. When buying, be sure to check for the formula that most suits your dog. In fact, you can even try the Product Selector tool they offer on their website for suggestions based on certain parameters you provide. Overall, this is a quality dog food worth trying.
OUR RATING: 5 Paws (out of 5)
Dog food image credits: © Chewy.com
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Top Picks For Our Dogs
- BEST PUPPY TOY
We Like: Snuggle Puppy w/ Heart Beat & Heat Pack - Perfect for new puppies. We get all of our Service Dog pups a Snuggle Puppy.
- BEST CHEW TOY
We Like: KONG Extreme - Great toy for heavy chewers like our Labrador Retrievers.
- BEST DOG TREATS
We Like: Wellness Soft Puppy Bites - One of our favorite treats for training our service dog puppies.
- BEST FRESH DOG FOOD
We Like: The Farmer's Dog - A couple months ago we started feeding Raven fresh dog food and she loves it! Get 50% off your first order of The Farmer's Dog.
For a list of all the supplies we get for our new service dog puppies check out our New Puppy Checklist on the PuppyInTraining.com blog.