Have you just welcomed a new puppy into your home? If so, then congratulations! As exciting this moment is, it’s also a time of tribulations, as well as trial and error while trying and discovering your dog’s needs and wants.
This is a task that’s challenging and rewarding, which includes feeding. Many first-time owners try to figure out which is the best wet puppy food in the market. So, let’s find out!
Table of Contents
Top 5 Picks for Best Wet Dog Food for Puppies in 2021
|Wet Puppy Food Recipes||Our Rating|
Best Overall Wet Puppy Food (All Sizes)
|Wellness Complete Health Just for Puppy
Best Budget Wet Puppy Food
|Whole Earth Farms Grain-Free Wet Puppy Food
|Best Wet Puppy Foods for Small and Medium-Sized Breed||Chicken Soup for the Soul Canned Puppy Food
Best Wet Puppy Foods for Large-Sized Breed
|Wellness — Core Grain Free Puppy Formula (Grain-Free)
|Best Grain-Free Wet Puppy Food||Nulo Freestyle Grain-Free Lamb & Sweet Potato Small Breed & Puppy Canned Food
12 Best Wet Dog Food Brands for Puppies by Sizes
There are various brands to consider when finding the best puppy food.
But instead of dry dog foods, most owners get canned or wet food for their puppies because they’re easier to eat, digest, and a great choice for picky eaters.
Some are even made for specific or all sizes. They have balanced ingredients to provide whole-body nutrition.
Best Wet Foods for Puppies (All sizes)
Did you know that wet food is also a good choice if you have multiple puppies in your home or a mixed-breed dog that you are unsure of their adult size? Just take a look at the brands that made our list.
1. Wellness Complete Health Just for Puppy (With Grain)
Top Ingredients: Chicken, Chicken Broth, Chicken Liver
Wellness Complete Health Chicken & Salmon is a protein-rich diet that’s suitable for puppies of all sizes.
It’s also packed with vegetables, other nutrient-rich ingredients for full-body health, and formulated to boost the immune system, improve digestion, and sustain energy levels.
- Pate style food with a savory taste that most dogs love
- Formulated by nutritionists and veterinarians
- A dog owner complained that the food smelt bad and gave their dog terrible puppy breath
2. Purina Pro Plan — Focus Puppy Classic Chicken & Rice Entree Canned Dog Food
Top Ingredients: Chicken, Liver, Meat By-Products
Rich in quality proteins, this well-balanced recipe will provide complete mental and physical nutrition for growing pups. It also has easily digestible carbs with prebiotic fiber to maintain intestinal balance.
- Contains Omega-6 fatty acids for a healthy coat and DHA for cognitive development
- Has added calcium for strengthening teeth and bones
- Has meat by-products as the third ingredient
3. Merrick Grain-Free Puppy Plate Chicken
Top Ingredients: Deboned Chicken, Chicken Broth, Deboned Turkey
With chicken-based protein, this grain-free formula includes real antioxidant-rich fruits and veggies.
- Contains DHA to support healthy brain development
- One owner raved that this food stays fresh for a long time in the fridge
- Some pet owners complained of black or purple bits of meat
4. Whole Earth Farms Grain-Free Wet Puppy Food
Top Ingredients: Chicken, Chicken Broth, Turkey
This budget-friendly option has wholesome ingredients, high-quality protein from real chicken and turkey, as well as added flavor from blueberries, thyme, sage, and rosemary.
- Has no soy, wheat, or corn
- Some dogs had loose stools on this puppy food
- Some pet owners complained the food smells fishy
Best Wet Puppy Foods for Small and Medium-Sized Breed Puppies
Small and medium-sized puppies are typically highly energetic and have a fast metabolic rate, which means they need to eat frequently.
So they require meals that are packed with enough calories, protein, and fat to sustain them.
Here are some of the best small breed puppy foods on the market.
5. Instinct Original Grain-Free Wet Puppy Food
Top Ingredients: Chicken, Chicken Broth, Beef Liver
This grain-free all-natural wet puppy food from a well-established brand offers lots of protein and flavor. It’s made of cage-free chicken, real beef liver, salmon, and loads of wholesome veggies.
- Has DHA to support eye and brain development
- Contains no corn, wheat, soy, potato, carrageenan, preservatives, or artificial colors
- Some pet owners complained that the consistency was too soupy
6. Chicken Soup for the Soul Canned Puppy Food
Top Ingredients: Chicken, Chicken Liver, Turkey
This protein-based growth formula is packed with real chicken, turkey, duck, and salmon. It has no by-product meals, corn, wheat, or soy, too!
- Contains no preservatives, artificial colors, or flavors
- Some dogs just refused to eat this food
7. Nulo Freestyle Grain-Free Lamb & Sweet Potato Small Breed & Puppy Canned Food
Top Ingredients: Turkey, Turkey Broth, Salmon Broth
A recipe with turkey as its first ingredient, low-glycemic, and is designed to fuel growing muscles. It also contains balanced levels of calcium and phosphorus to build strong bones and teeth.
- Full of antioxidant-rich ingredients like cranberries and blueberries
- Made for dogs with food sensitivities being free of grains, corn, wheat, or soy
- Some picky dogs didn’t like this food
8. AvoDerm Natural Wet Puppy Food
Top Ingredients: Chicken, Chicken Broth, Chicken Liver
AvoDerm made this superior balanced growth formula with real chicken as the primary protein.
It’s loaded with wholesome grains, antioxidant-rich vegetables, vitamins, and minerals for complete nutrition, as well as omega-rich avocados for healthy skin and coat.
- Naturally preserved with mixed tocopherols to ensure palatability and freshness
- Contains no corn, wheat, or soy
- Some picky dogs refused to eat this food
Best Wet Puppy Foods for Large-Sized Puppies
Large breed dogs reach adulthood a lot later than small breeds. However, they can grow too quickly, especially with dog foods that contain too many calories, calcium, or Vitamin D that aids in the absorption of calcium.
These can lead to bone and joint development issues in larger breeds and eventually to crippling hip dysplasia later in life.
Thus, large breed puppy food options have a carefully balanced vitamin and supplement formula to ensure healthy bones’ slow development.
9. Wellness — Core Grain Free Puppy Formula (Grain-Free)
Top Ingredients: Turkey Broth, Turkey, Chicken
Wellness specifically designed this protein-rich formula for growing puppies featuring real turkey and chicken. It’s a grain-free option that’s suitable for dogs with sensitive stomachs and allergies.
It also has nutrient-rich meals without any unnecessary fillers, which are great for core strength and development.
- Features a proprietary blend of botanicals and nutritional supplements, including DHA
- Made only using premium natural ingredients and free from GMO ingredients like wheat, corn, soy, or meat by-products
- Not BPA-free
10. Blue Buffalo Wilderness Turkey & Chicken Grill Grain-Free Puppy Canned Dog Food
Top Ingredients: Turkey, Chicken Broth, Chicken
This one’s a healthy, nutrient-rich wet dog food designed to aid digestion while providing fatty acids and DHA for mental development.
It’s made from only natural ingredients and entirely gluten-free, packed with fruits and veggies, as well as essential vitamins and minerals.
- Doesn’t contain any grain, by-product meals, corn, wheat, soy, artificial flavors, or preservatives
- Some owners complained the food was hard to separate
- Some dogs wouldn’t touch this food
11. Eukanuba Puppy Mixed Grill Chicken and Beef Dinner
Top Ingredients: Water, Chicken, Beef Liver
Besides having high-quality proteins, this recipe is affordable, grain-inclusive, and full of nutrient-rich vegetables that add flavor and peak nutritional performance.
It features an optimal balance of fats, carbohydrates, vitamins, minerals, and proteins..
- Rich in antioxidants for a healthy immune system
- Features essential amino acids for building strong muscles
- Features water as the first ingredient
12. Blue Buffalo Homestyle Puppy
Top Ingredients: Chicken, Chicken Broth, Chicken Liver
Homestyle Puppy Chicken Dinner is a finely-chopped, pate-style pet food with a fat to protein ratio of 75% and has no corn, wheat, soy, or artificial ingredients.
It also includes garden fruits and vegetables from the brand popular for their life protection formula.
- Contains omega-rich DHA for eye and brain development
- It doesn’t have a strong smell like many wet dog foods
- One reviewer complained their dog threw up while on this diet
Buyer’s Guide: How to choose the right wet food that’s right for your pup
Look for a high-quality puppy food containing real, whole-food sources and quality ingredients while also considering your dog’s breed size and life stage so that your food corresponds to their development.
It should also cater to your dog’s specific nutritional needs, supplying everything they need to grow and develop muscles, bones, and organs.
Puppy Nutrition 101: What kind of wet food does your pup need?
Puppy foods should comply with the nutritional profiles determined by the AAFCO (the Association of American Feed Control Officials) for life stages and growth.
An AAFCO label on your dog food will declare the product’s nutritional adequacy, but it doesn’t guarantee that the food is of high-quality or the best dog food.
One of the most important things you need to look at when reading any nutritional labels is the protein content.
Puppy food should contain higher levels than adult dog food as puppies need this protein to support their developing bodies. The AAFCO recommends a puppy recipe should have a minimum of 22% protein and 8% fat.
Choose one that has real animal protein sources, like real meat from turkey, chicken, ocean fish, duck, chicken broth, livers, chicken meal, turkey meal, or fish meal, like salmon meal.
Your puppy’s food’s fat content ensures a concentrated source of calories, while the fat also helps to absorb vitamins.
Fiber and essential nutrients can also come from the carbohydrate content.
Also, look for recipes that contain nutritional supplements designed to support growth and a healthy immune system.
These include chondroitin and glucosamine for joint health, omega-3 fatty acids like those found in flaxseed and fish oil for a healthy immune system, and probiotics for proper digestion.
Things to look for when selecting a wet puppy food: What should puppies eat?
While dogs can occasionally be treated with human food, it’s essential to bear in mind that not all of them can be consumed by dogs.
Lean meats and healthy vegetables like peas, carrots, sweet potatoes, and bananas are excellent options. On the other hand, stay away from the following ingredients:
- Macadamia nuts
- Raw bread dough
Some dogs may also have allergies to milk or cheese.
Is wet food a better option than dry puppy food?
All types of dog food have their own pros and cons.
Dry kibble may have longer shelf life, more convenient, affordable, and lessy, plus it’s beneficial for our pets’ dental health, wet food is often chosen for puppies as a topper to kibble or their sole diet.
Some pups also have trouble chewing and swallowing dry kibbles.
Wet food can be a healthier alternative because it doesn’t have so many filler ingredients.
Not many paw parents know this, but wet food has higher fat, protein, water content.
This can all be a good thing, but you need to consider your dog’s specific health considerations, like how some fur babies watching their weight might not benefit from the higher fat content.
Do puppies need grain-free wet puppy food?
Dogs who are allergic to grains may need a grain-free diet. Some pet owners say a holistic, grain-free diet is more similar to what dogs would traditionally eat in the wild.
However, many veterinarians warn against feeding your dog a grain-free diet due to the FDA’s studies that have found a link between heart disease and grain-free diets in canines.
Thus a single whole-grain diet with limited ingredients is often offered as an alternative solution to going completely grain-free for those dogs with a sensitive digestive system.
Go for nutrient-dense whole grains, like brown rice, lentils, or barley.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
When is your puppy ready for wet food?
From around four weeks old, puppies can no longer get the nutrition they need solely from their mothers’ milk, and dog food needs to be introduced.
By around six weeks old, these pups will need to be weaned off their mother’s milk entirely. However, many young puppies struggle to go onto kibble at this stage, so food needs to be moist or softened.
Introducing tasty, well-balanced wet dog food to puppies at this stage can help them to get the nutrition they need, and it’s easier for them to eat.
How much wet food should you feed your puppy?
As each food and dog is different, it’s best to consult the recommended feeding schedule and amount on the bag or packaging.
This daily amount should be split between three to four meals until your dog is at least six months old. Once your pup reaches adulthood, you can decrease the number of meals to twice a day.
This feeding chart can be an excellent place to start when looking at how much to feed your pup:
|Weight in pounds||Daily Amount|
|20||1 ¼ cups|
|40||2 ¼ cups|
What’s the right time to switch my puppy to adult wet food?
Small dogs can generally start the transition to adult food between 9 and 10 months old, while large breed puppies can do the change when they’re between 12 and 16 months old.
Once your puppy has reached between 80-90% of its expected adult weight and size, it’s time for pups to switch to adult food.
This varies from breed to breed, with small dogs reaching maturity much quicker than their larger counterparts.
What puppy wet food do most vets recommend?
Before introducing new food to your dog, it’s best to talk to your vet so that they can give recommendations based on your pet’s weight, size, breed, and potential for any future health issues.
There are plenty of options that didn’t make our list from brands like Nutro, Hills, Iams, Orijen, Royal Canin, Pacific Stream, Pedigree, and Taste of the Wild.
But the goal is to pick a food that’s specifically formulated for the growing needs of puppies. These foods supply all that is needed for optimal growth and development.
What do you think is the best wet puppy food? Let us know in the comments below.