Dog Food Rating System

The following is a commercial food ratings system that I created so you can easily rate the quality of food that you feed your dog. While this system is not 100%, I wrote it so that you can use the result as a guideline when buying dog food at the supermarke. I read the concept behind this rating system on a website a couple of years ago. I modified and programmed it in an easy to use calculator format which is a lot more convenient than the pdf version I was giving away previously.


Step 1

1. How many listings of “by-product” do you find on the dog food label?

2. How many non specific animal sources (meat meal, poultry meal, fat etc..) do you find on the label?

3. Does the food contain BHA, BHT or Ethoxyquin?

4. How many mentions of “grain”, “mill run” or non specific grain sources are listed on the label?

5. Is the same grain ingredient listed 2 or more times in the first five ingredients?

(ie: “ground brown rice” “brewers rice”, “rice flour” are all the same grain)

6. Are the protein sources not named meat or meat meals and there are fewer than 2 meats in the top 3 ingredients?

7. Does the food contain any artificial colorants?

8. Does the food contain ground corn or whole grain corn?

9. Is the corn listed in the top 5 ingredients?

10. Does the food contain any animal fat other than fish oil?

11. Is lamb the only protein source?

12. Does the food contain soy or soybeans?

13. Does the food contain wheat?

14. Does the food contain any beef?

15. Does the food contain any salt?

Step 2 – Bonus Points

A. Are any of the meat sources organic?

B. Is the dog food endorsed by any major breed group or nutritionist?

C. Is the dog food baked and not extruded?

D. Does the dog food contain probiotics?

E. Does the dog food contain any fruit?

F. Does the dog food contain vegetables? (NOT Corn or any type of grain)

G. Are the animal sources hormone-free and antibiotic-free?

H. Does the dog food contain barley?

I. Does the dog food contain flax seed oil? (not just the seeds)

J. Does the dog food contain oats or oatmeal?

K. Does the dog food contain sunflower oil?

L. How many different specific animal sources other than the very first one, does the food contain? (ex. count chicken and chicken meal as the same protein source but you would count chicken and turkey as 1 other source and chicken, turkey and fish meal as 2 additional sources

M. Does the dog food contain glucosamine and chondroitin?

N. Has the vegetables in the food been tested for pesticides and is pesticide free?

Step 3 – Calculate & Results
Your Dog Food Score Is: