Wet or Dry Food? That is the Question

Claire Dunling

What do you feed your canine? Wet, dry, raw, or whatever’s left from dinner? With so much conflicting information surrounding what we should be feeding our pets, there’s no wonder many of us are left scratching our heads when deciding on the best diet. Dogs, being the archetypal creatures of habit that they are, love their routines and will happily eat the same food for years. This may raise the question: if it ain’t broke, why fix it? Read on for a full breakdown of our bestselling foods, the benefits of each type depending on your dog’s health conditions and why a mixture of both wet and dry food is best.

Wet or dry dog food

Variety is the spice of life for a human’s diet. However, when it comes to your dog’s dinner, sticking to a consistent eating plan is good practice. One thing that does apply to us mammals is that we are what we eat! This will be very visible from their stools, so keeping a close eye out on walkies and checking they’re firm, formed and brown will indicate that their diet is working for them. If they aren’t this may lead you to question: what food is best for my dog? You’ll want to look out for a nutritional diet that will complement their breed, size, age and any specific conditions they may have. It’s also important to look out for easily digestible foods like chicken and rice. Oh, and remember to always put down a bowl of fresh water with your dog’s food whether it’s wet or dry.

The Royal Canin Sensitivity Control Diet is an all-around good wet food for dogs suffering from food hypersensitivities including lactose and gluten intolerances. The specially formulated diet combats dermatological and gastrointestinal symptoms with its highly digestible proteins, prebiotics and oils. It contains long-chain omega-3 acids like eicosapentaenoic and docosahexaenoic, which are scientifically proven to modulate skin reactions and contribute to improving intestinal health.

Dogs affected by digestion issues such as enteropathy, gastritis, oesophagitis, Exocrine Pancreatic Insufficiency (EPI), acute and chronic diarrhoea will most likely be recommended the low fat Gastro-Intestinal Diet from Royal Canin. The combination of highly digestible proteins, prebiotics and low levels of soluble fibres makes for an easily digestible yet appealing food for your dog. Not only is this range clinically proven but is also praised by customers for its guaranteed stomach-settling properties. For pups on the podgier side, this range is a perfect option especially as the low-fat concentration also improves digestive functions.

Another favourite to manage gastrointestinal disorders amongst our canine customers is Hill’s I/D Digestive Care Prescription Diet. The highly digestible food is low in fat and enriched with prebiotic fibre, such as flax seeds and beet pulp, to promote a healthy gut and to ensure all nutrients are easily absorbed. Hill’s I/D Digestive Care also contains ginger root powder which helps calm and soothes the digestive tract.

Dry Foods

Dry foods are convenient – you can order bigger bags that last much longer and are usually cheaper than a pack of tins or a box of pouches. It is also more convenient when feeding an overweight dog as you can measure out precise portions each time. Or, if you’re worried that your pooch gets peckish during the day (as they’ll most likely do) you can put down a small portion to keep them going until your home.


Hill’s Metabolic+ Mobility Weight Management Prescription Diet is your go-to food if your dog’s joints are affected by their weight. This veterinary diet is clinically proven to reduce body weight by 13% in 60 days and improve mobility in as little as 21 days. With its blend of protein, probiotics, antioxidants, sources of omega-3 and glucosamine, this wonder-food works with your dog’s unique metabolism by activating the body’s natural ability to burn excess body fat while improving joint condition. Owed to a high-quality protein source, dogs are fuller for longer, satiety is enhanced and begging behaviour is reduced.

Overweight and obese dogs are on the rise so there’s no surprise that Royal Canin Satiety Support is another popular choice for our canine customers. As you’ll probably guess from the name, the key benefits of the satiety range is to satiate your pet’s hunger and keep them fuller for longer. With a special blend of low-calorie ingredients and fibres, the volume of the stomachs contents is increased so keeps them satisfied. This complete dietetic dry food is also suitable for dogs with diabetes as it minimises the likelihood of overeating and you can portion control them much more efficiently than if you were to feed them wet foods.

For dogs who have adverse reactions to certain foods, Royal Canin Veterinary Diet Anallergenic Canine is your go-to dietetic food to improve coat, skin and general well-being. The specially formulated kibble is packed with omega-3 found in fish oils and soybean oils which reduces irritation, soreness and hair loss. Also, the dietetic food contains just one source of protein, venison, which minimises irritation to the digestive system as well as being deliciously tasty for your dog.


So, there’s your breakdown of the best wet and dry foods. Consider serving a mixture of both so your pet has a bit of variety in their diet and the added benefits of both forms. However, if you are dealing with an overweight pooch, this method of feeding may be a little trickier to measure the intake. In this instance, we’d advise measuring out exact portions and cut out any tidbits after dinner.

Also, if you are introducing a new diet into their routine, make sure this is done gradually else you’ll most likely be left with full bowls! Taking a gentle approach like serving 80% old food and 20% new food for a few days. Then gradually moving up to a 50:50 ratio will allow their digestion to adjust.

The article is an opinion and should only be used as a guide. You should discuss any change to your pet’s care or lifestyle thoroughly with your vet before starting any program or treatment.

If in doubt contact your veterinary practice

And always keep your vet's phone number handy - just in case!