Best Dry Puppy Food Money Can Buy in UK 2023 & How to Choose One

In a world where the pitter-patter of tiny paws can fill a home with boundless joy, a responsibility comes hand in hand – your puppy’s daily food.

When it comes to your new furry family member, every bite matters. The early stages of a puppy’s life are crucial for physical and mental development.

Much like our human babies, puppies have an underdeveloped digestive system and a body that requires a healthy diet. That’s why the right nutrition can make a world of difference.

Veterinarians worldwide can not stress enough how important a good diet is post mother’s milk.

You have come to the right place if you just got a new puppy and are still determining the dry food choices. Searching for this stuff online is overwhelming, given the number of brands and products. Let’s help you out, shall we?

Brand
Best Overall
Lily's Kitchen
Best For Large Breeds
Eukanaba
Best For Small Breeds
Wellness Core
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Lily's Kitchen Natural Puppy Dry Dog Food Chicken Salmon & Peas 7kg
Eukanuba Puppy Dog Food for Large Dogs Rich in Fresh Chicken, 12 kg
Wellness CORE Puppy Original, Dry Puppy Food, Dry Puppy Food for Small & Medium Sized Puppies, Grain Free, High Meat Content, Turkey & Chicken, 1.5 kg
Rating
Best Overall
Brand
Lily's Kitchen
Image
Lily's Kitchen Natural Puppy Dry Dog Food Chicken Salmon & Peas 7kg
Rating
Where To Buy
Best For Large Breeds
Brand
Eukanaba
Image
Eukanuba Puppy Dog Food for Large Dogs Rich in Fresh Chicken, 12 kg
Rating
Where To Buy
Best For Small Breeds
Brand
Wellness Core
Image
Wellness CORE Puppy Original, Dry Puppy Food, Dry Puppy Food for Small & Medium Sized Puppies, Grain Free, High Meat Content, Turkey & Chicken, 1.5 kg
Rating
Where To Buy

Top 10 Dry Puppy Foods in the UK for 2023

1. Lily’s Kitchen Chicken & Salmon Dry Kibble

Lily's Kitchen Chicken & Salmon Dry Puppy Food

Lily’s Kitchen Chicken & Salmon Dry Kibble is the best dry puppy food you can buy in 2023. They make a super tasty blend packed full of fruits and vegetables. It’s for puppies aged four weeks and up. Made with only natural ingredients, the kibble is grain-free, soft and suitable for their tiny teeth.

This dry food for large breeds and small breeds will give your pup the health boost they need through the nutrients and minerals, give their developing immune system a boost and give them prebiotics for good measure. Its taste will be a joy thanks to the added herbs.

A quality product that’s one of the best and suitable for any breed of puppy and a price to keep owners pleased, too.

Ingredients
38% Freshly Prepared: Chicken 24%, Chicken Liver 7%, Salmon 7%, Sweet Potatoes 28%, Pea Protein, Potatoes 6%, Lentils, Peas, Eggs, Chicken Fat, Chicken Gravy, Flaxseed, Salmon Oil, Vitamins & Chelated Minerals, Fructooligosaccharides 2.5g/kg, Mannan Oligosaccharides 2.5g/kg, Glucosamine 1,500mg/kg, Methylsulphonylmethane 1,500mg/kg, Chondroitin Sulphate 1,200mg/kg, Apples, Carrots, Spinach, Cranberries, Botanicals & Herbs: Alfalfa, Rosehips, Chickweed, Cleavers, Golden Rod, Nettles, Kelp, Celery Seeds, Milk Thistle, Dandelion Root, Burdock Root, Marigold Petals, Chicory Root


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Lily's Kitchen Chicken & Salmon Dry Kibble
2,857 Reviews
Lily's Kitchen Chicken & Salmon Dry Kibble
  • Give your pup the healthiest start in life with this puppy food with complete and balanced nutrition, brimming with freshly prepared meat and offal, with wholesome ingredients like glucosamine and chondroitin to help support healthy, growing joints

2. Best dry dog food for puppies

Pure Pet Food

Pure create tailored recipes that develop and adapt as your puppy grows, ensuring that your pup is always getting the best nutrition all the way into their adult life. 

Pure is made by finely chopping up meat, fruit and veggies and gently removing the moisture to preserve all the nutrients, creating a healthy, but still super convenient dry dog food to keep in the cupboard. The twist with this one is that before serving up, you add warm water back into the food so that your pup can enjoy a warm, delicious dinner. 

Also, the food is soft and easy to chew, perfect for pups who haven’t yet developed their adult teeth but still want to gobble down a yummy meal.

Designed to boost underdeveloped immune systems, support rapid growth and stay gentle on delicate stomachs, Pure is there to give your pup the best start to life.

3. Barking Heads Dry Dog Food for Puppies

Barking Heads Dry Dog Food for Puppies

Barking Heads has started to become a household name as they offer puppy food used with the kind of ingredients you would expect in your own dinner. In this case, it’s freshly prepared chicken and salmon – two ingredients full of protein and omega fats which are essential for puppy development.

The kibble is small and easy to chew for even the smallest puppies whether it’s prepared on its own or with some choice wet food. It’s also free from processed grains, food binders, artificial preservatives and all that bad stuff.

Barking Heads Dry Dog Food for Puppies will help your dog grow strong teeth and bones, a clean and shiny coat and it is vet-approved and backed up with almost a thousand positive reviews which is always a good sign. Lastly, it comes in a massive 18kg bag which will drive down the cost even further.

Ingredients
Composition: 62%* Salmon, Chicken & Egg includes – Salmon *(27%), Dried Chicken *(21%), Sweet Potato, Potato, Chicken *(10%), Peas, Egg *(4%), Lucerne, Salmon Oil, Seaweed, Fructo-oligosaccharides, Yeasts (MOS), Glucosamine 355mg/kg, Methylsulfonylmethane 355mg/kg, Chondroitin Sulphate 250mg/kg, Tomato, Carrot, Mixed Herbs (Marjoram, Basil, Oregano, Sage, Thyme, Parsley) (0.4%), Minerals

Barking Heads Dry Dog Food for Puppies
386 Reviews
Barking Heads Dry Dog Food for Puppies
  • 100% NATURAL CHICKEN AND SALMON - Our yummy dry puppy food is made with 100% natural chicken and salmon blended with a super tail-wagging combo of vegetables and herbs for your newest family member.

Read More: Housebreaking & Crate Training Your Puppy / New Dog – A Beginner’s Guide

4. Harringtons Puppy Food Complete

Harringtons Puppy Food Complete

Harringtons is a recognised brand that produces quality puppy food at affordable prices. The turkey and rice flavour is what we’ve found to be one our pup liked the most. Easy to chew kibble with plenty of the nutrients and minerals they crave at that age.

No artificial colours, flavours, dairy, soy and wheat will be found in this great blend so you can rest assured your pup is being well fed. Yeats has been added to aid their adolescent digestion. On top of these, you’ll find citrus antioxidants, kelp and omega 3 & 6 fatty acids with yucca extracts – all of which help reduce flatulence and help give fresh breath.

Harrington’ is perfectly fine on its own but optimal with wet food mixed in, especially for picky eaters.

Overall, you can’t go wrong with Harringtons puppy food, we vouch for it as do over 300 verified customers on Amazon.

Ingredients
Maize, Turkey Meal (20%), Rice (15%), Meat Meal, Porridge Oats, Poultry Fat, Digest, Beet Pulp, Linseed, Minerals, Kelp (0.2%), Yeast (0.1%), Citrus Extract (0.04%), Yucca Extract (0.01%)

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Harringtons Puppy Food Complete
26,453 Reviews
Harringtons Puppy Food Complete
  • Balanced Ratio Of Omega 6 & 3 Oils For A Glossy Coat

Read the Full Harringtons Dry Puppy Food Review

Don’t forget to check out our other articles on dog food – best adult dry dog food, best wet dog food, high fibre dog food and grain-free dog food.

5. Wellness CORE Large Breed Puppy Food Dry

Wellness CORE Large Breed Puppy Food Dry

The Wellness CORE range almost exclusively on most of our dog food related buyer’s guides and with good reason, they make quality food with proper ingredients which are super tasty and super healthy – in this case, we wanted to highlight their chicken flavour designed for large breeds.

Grain-free, hypoallergenic and with meat as the number 1 source this is pretty close to what a puppy would need if they were in the wild as it supports their massive growth period. Despite being chicken-based, Wellness has thrown in salmon oil to ensure their joints get plenty of attention as well as their eyes and brain.

The kibble is bigger for larger jaws but still easy to chew and swallow. The flavour is good enough to be eaten on its own or mixed in with your choice of wet food if they’re a little on the fussy side. 

The price is above average but the quality is also above average so you really do get what you pay for your loved puppy. Highly recommended puppy food.

Ingredients
COMPOSITION: Chicken 61% (Fresh Chicken 25%, Dehydrated Chicken 20%, Chicken Fat 6%, Dried Chicken Protein 5%, Chicken Gravy 5%), Peas, Dried Potatoes, Beet Pulp 4%, Full-fat Linseed, Salmon Oil 2%, Carrots, Apples, Dried Chicory Root 0,5% (source of FOS and inulin), Yeast Extract (source of mannan-oligosaccharides) 0,5%, Broccoli, Tomatoes, Spinach, Cranberries, Blueberries, Glucosamine Hydrochloride 100 mg/kg, Chondroitin Sulfate 100 mg/kg, Yucca Schidigera.

Wellness CORE Large Breed Puppy Food Dry
386 Reviews
Wellness CORE Large Breed Puppy Food Dry
  • BRAIN AND EYE DEVELOPMENT: Our Wellness CORE puppy food will stimulate the brain and eye development of your furry friend thanks to the amount of DHA from the salmon oil used in our product.

6. Eukanuba Puppy Dog Food for Small Dog

Eukanuba Puppy Dog Food for Small Dog

Eukanuba is one of the highest-rated dry food on Amazon with almost 600 reviews and an average rating of 4.5. This is on the strength of the flavour of the kibble with many owners saying how much their puppy looked forward to breakfast, dinner and supper. 

As usual, the main ingredient is chicken with no artificial colours, flavours or preservatives, or GMOs. This is the high standard everyone comes to expect in puppy food to be fair. Second, Eukanuba Puppy Dog Food includes prebiotics for a healthy gut and DHA for joint, brain and eye support. 

This may not be a household name being splashed on the telly and all over Pets at Home but it’s one that many who buy puppy food online will have encountered at one point. Why not give this a go and save some money on some proper quality puppy grub.

Ingredients
Dried Chicken And Turkey (38%), Maize, Wheat, Animal Fat, Dried Beet Pulp (3%), Chicken Digest, Rice, Dried Whole Egg, Fish Oil, Brewer’s Dried Yeast, Potassium Chloride, Sodium Chloride, Fructooligosaccharides (015%), Marigold Extract, Analytical Constituents Contain Protein (32.0%), Fat Content (21.0%), Omega-6 Fatty Acids (3.00%), Omega-3 Fatty Acids (0.45%), DHA (0.10%), Moisture (8.00%), Crude Ash (7.35%), Crude Fibres (2.30%), Calcium (1.35%), Phosphorus (1.03%), Additives Contain Vitamin A (15000 IU/kg), Vitamin D (750 IU/kg), Vitamin E α-Tocopherol (200 mg/kg), β -Carotene (1 mg/kg), Trace Elements Contain Iron (Ferrous Sulphate), Heptahydrate (220 mg/kg) , Zinc (Zinc Oxide 184 mg/kg), Manganese (Manganous Oxide 24 mg/kg), Manganese (Manganous Sulphate), Monohydrate (18 mg/kg), Copper (Cupric Sulphate), Pentahydrate (14 mg/kg), Iodine (Potassium Iodide 3 mg/kg), Cobalt (Basic Cobaltous Carbonate), Monohydrate (0.5 mg/kg)


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Eukanuba Puppy Dog Food for Small Dog
3,175 Reviews
Eukanuba Puppy Dog Food for Small Dog
  • Tailored puppy food with fresh chicken for small breed dogs in a resealable bag

7. Wagg Puppy Food Complete Dry Mix

Wagg is somewhat of a household name that provides adequate nutrition for those on a budget. No artificial, colours or flavours included and overall it’s a pretty healthy mix for any pup big or small.

Can help to boost their immune system with citrus extracts, help grow strong teeth and bones and positive energy through a healthy digestive system with prebiotics as they try and navigate their new world. DHA from fish is thrown in to help mental development.

The kibble is nice and tasty with a delicious powder coating that is easy to chew and swallow whether alone or with a wet mix. 

Wagg’s blend is perfectly serviceable at a very reasonable price to keep both the hound and master happy as larry.

Ingredients
Cereals, Meat and Animal Derivatives (15% chicken in chicken kibble), Vegetable Protein Extracts, Oils & Fats, Vegetables (4% peas in pea kibble), Derivatives of Vegetable Origin, Minerals, Yeasts (0.08%), Citrus Extract (0.03%) & Yucca Extract (0.01%).

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Wagg Puppy Food Complete Dry Mix
1,705 Reviews
Wagg Puppy Food Complete Dry Mix
  • 1. FOR GROWING PUPPIES - Wagg Complete Puppy Food is suitable for puppies from 4 weeks old.

Read More: Puppy Breath: How to Keep it Longer and Why it Disappears

8. Vet’s Kitchen Chicken and Brown Rice Puppy Complete Dog Food

Vet’s kitchen offers a chicken and brown rice recipe bursting with flavour and nutrients to help grow a healthy puppy from nose to tail.

Hypoallergenic and with prebiotics (Fructooligosaccharides), Vet’s Kitchen Chicken and Brown Rice Puppy Complete Dog Food is sensitive to your puppy’s tum and helps prevent flatulence and dryness, itchy skin which can occur at that age.

Omega 3 and nucleotides provide bone and joint support and 36% of chicken provides an abundance of protein to maintain and grow strong muscles. The taste is superb and our pups had no problem whatsoever eating and seemed to really enjoy it often wanting more.

It’s a strong product with hundreds of positive reviews and a reasonable price point to suit any taste, breed or budget.

Ingredients
Chicken Meal (min. 36%), Brown Rice (min. 26%), Oats, Dried Egg, Beet Pulp, Chicken Fat, Brewer’s Yeast, Salmon Oil, Chicken Gravy, Minerals, Vitamins, Seaweed Oil Extract (min. 0.3%), Beta-Glucan Yeast Extract (min. 0.1%), Mannanoligosaccharides (Prebiotic, min. 425 mg/kg), Fructooligosaccharides (Prebiotic, min, 425 mg/kg), Yucca Schidigera Extract, Nucleotides.

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Vet's Kitchen Chicken and Brown Rice Puppy Complete Dog Food
91 Reviews

9. Edgard & Cooper Fabulous Duck & Chicken

Edgard & Cooper Fabulous Duck & Chicken

If you’re looking for something a little posh for your pampered pup then Edgard & Cooper Fabulous Duck & Chicken dry puppy kibble is probably at the top of the list. The duck itself is premium meat in dog food and your pup will be spoiled by the taste and the nutrients it provides.

None of the meat is processed or in meal form, so it’s the highest quality you can expect and retains all of the minerals from its natural state. Next,  Edgard & Cooper Fabulous Duck & Chicken also contains other fancy ingredients most puppy food brands don’t have which are pumpkin, plantain, mango, carrot, cowberry and pea.

This, in turn, creates one of the most nutritious and tasty dry food on the UK market, albeit on a bit of a premium!

Ingredients
fresh chicken 40% potatoes fresh duck 10% peas 8% pea protein potato protein chicken gravy linseed chicken fat minerals fish oil pumpkin 0.5% plantain 0.5% mango 0.5% carrots 0.25% cowberries 0.25% mannan-oligosaccharides (MOS) fructooligosaccharides (FOS) marigold blossoms nettle blackberry leaves fennel caraway chamomile balm glucosamine chondroitin sulphate.

Edgard & Cooper Fabulous Duck & Chicken
35 Reviews
Edgard & Cooper Fabulous Duck & Chicken
  • NATURALLY TASTY DRY DOG FOOD: PACKED WITH LOTS OF FRESH MEAT filled with quality and tasty protein (no meat meal, no overprocessed or dried meat), Non GMO - We cook ingredients with care to preserve their flavour and natural nutrients. Suitable for adult neutered or unneutered dogs of all breeds and sizes. With a GRAIN FREE and GLUTEN FREE range, our dry food is perfect for sensitive stomachs, and contains PRE-BIOTICS for a healthy gut.

10. IAMS for Vitality Small/Medium Breed Puppy Dry Dog Food

IAMS offer healthy and affordable food for puppies using fresh chicken (not a meal or processed) without wheat, fillers, artificial colours or preservatives. There’s an antioxidant blend with vitamin E to help support your pup’s growing immune system.

The kibble is nice, small and crunchy which will delight the young pup to no end. It’s not the tastiest, however, with IAMS aiming to make their blend utilitarian and affordable as opposed to flamboyant like some of the others.

Does this make it an also-ran? A little. However, what you do get with IAMS is a tried and tested blend which is unlikely to be disliked by any dog as they’re a brand for the masses and not the connoisseur. It does contain grains and it isn’t hypoallergenic.

Ingredients
dried chicken & turkey 32% (including chicken 19%), maize, maize grits, animal fat, fresh chicken (5.0%), rice, dried beet pulp (3.3%), chicken gravy, minerals, fish oil, dried whole egg, fructooligosaccharides (0.21%), brewers’ dried yeast.

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IAMS for Vitality Small/Medium Breed Puppy Dry Dog Food
4,373 Reviews
IAMS for Vitality Small/Medium Breed Puppy Dry Dog Food
  • IAMS for Vitality with fresh chicken for small and medium breed puppies is a 100% complete and balanced pet food that nourishes your puppy's healthy vitality & Supporting 7 signs of healthy vitality

Read the full Iams for Vitality Dry Puppy Food Review

For more options, check out our review for Arden Grange dry puppy food

Buyer’s Guide: What to Look for in Dry Puppy Food

Selecting the right dry puppy food may seem like navigating a labyrinth of labels and ingredients, but fear not. By keeping a few key factors in mind, you can make an informed choice for your pup.

1. Balanced Nutrients

Puppies need a balanced diet which consists of proteins, fats, carbohydrates, vitamins and minerals, which may be absent in low-quality and cheap food.

If you want your puppy to grow healthily, you shouldn’t just feed them anything. You should only feed them puppy-appropriate food which is ‘complete’ and ‘balanced’.

2. High-Quality Protein

The source of protein matters just as much as the quantity. Opt for products that list meat, poultry, or fish as the primary ingredient, indicating a higher quality protein source.

3. Age & Breed Appropriate Formulas

Puppies have distinct nutritional needs that differ from adult dogs. Ensure you choose a formula for puppies to support their rapid growth and development.

Also, choose the food that caters to your puppy’s specific breed, whether large, small, or medium.

4. Small, easy-to-chew kibble

Puppy teeth are razor sharp and designed more for taring than hardcore chewing, so find foods with small, softish kibble that’s tough enough to give their teeth a workout and encourage chewing but soft enough that they won’t struggle with it.

5. Limited Fillers

Avoid foods with excessive fillers, like corn and soy, as these provide minimal nutritional value and can lead to digestive issues.

6. Avoid Artificial Additives

Steer clear of puppy foods with artificial colours, flavours, and preservatives. Natural ingredients are a healthier choice for your pup.

7. Trusted Brands

Opt for well-established brands with a history of producing high-quality pet foods. Research and read reviews to gauge the brand’s reputation.

8. Budget Considerations

While quality matters, it’s important to factor in your budget. Various options are available across price ranges, so balance affordability and nutritional value.

Focusing on these key points, including your budget, you can cut through the noise and confidently select the food product that your puppy requires.

Read More: How to choose and set up a new puppy camera at your home?

How to transition your puppy to a new food?

Transitioning your puppy to a new food may seem daunting, but it’s easily doable with patience and the right approach. Here’s a step-by-step guide to help you navigate this process with ease:

Step 1: Gradual Introduction.

Mix a small portion of the new dry puppy food with your pup’s food. Gradually increase the proportion of the new food over about a week.

Step 2: Observe Behaviour.

Closely watch your puppy during the transition. Monitor their eating habits, energy levels, and any signs of discomfort.

Step 3: Adjust the Ratio.

Aim for a 50/50 mix of old and new food as you progress into mid-transition week.

Step 4: Slow and Steady.

Extend the transition period if your pup shows signs of digestive distress, such as vomiting or diarrhoea. Patience is key to ensuring their comfort.

Step 6: Complete Transition.

By the end of the transition period, your pup should be eating only the new dry puppy food.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

1. How does puppy food differ from adult pet food?

Foods designed for puppies will be more calorie-dense and nutrient-rich than adult dogs as their growth stage is intensive. The primary difference is the composition. PetMD states puppy foods have more protein and minerals per kg than adult food.

Puppy kibble will also be smaller and slightly softer so that it can be broken down easier by smaller, sharp teeth. You should never feed adult food to a puppy regularly.

2. Why is dry puppy food recommended?

Generally, dry food is recommended for puppies because its crunchy texture promotes dental health, helping to clean teeth and reduce tartar buildup. Additionally, dry food is formulated to provide a balanced blend of nutrients crucial for a puppy’s growth and development.

3. How do I determine the appropriate portion size for my puppy?

Portion control depends on your puppy’s age, breed, and activity level. Generally, follow the feeding guidelines on the food packaging, and adjust portions as needed based on your pup’s weight and condition.

4. Are there specific ingredients to avoid in puppy food?

Avoid foods with excessive fillers like corn, soy, and artificial colours, flavours, and preservatives. Opt for natural ingredients and quality protein sources.

5. Can I mix wet and dry puppy food?

Generally, you can mix wet and dry puppy food to provide variety and potentially increase moisture intake. However, ensure the total calorie intake aligns with your puppy’s needs to prevent overfeeding.

6. Should I consult a vet before changing my puppy’s diet?

Ideally, you should consult your veterinarian before making significant dietary changes for your puppy. They can provide guidance based on your pup’s individual needs and health considerations.

7. How much should 10 and 12-week-old puppies eat?

At 10 weeks, puppies need around 4 meals per day. Follow the feeding guidelines on the food packaging and adjust based on your pup’s growth and behaviour. Around 12 weeks, you can transition to 3 meals per day. Monitor their weight and adjust portions to maintain steady growth.

Author

  • Jonathan Spaeth

    I'm a professional business person who loves dogs. I'm motivated by a passion for dogs and a deep understanding of pet care and behavior. I have more than 10 years of experience in animal healthcare—my lifelong passion for helping dogs.

Last update on 2024-02-01 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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