What's better: Purina or Pedigree? This question might be haunting you for a long time. As a conscious pet owner, you realize that dog food is not just about the delicious flavor that would make your canine gulp the serving in minutes. First and foremost, it’s nourishing and balanced nutrition that fuels the dog and enriches their body and mind with the essential elements. When your pet eats healthily, they are happy and live a longer life.

So, in this review, we are going to compare two popular brands: Pedigree dog food vs Purina One. We’ll explore the product lines, the nutritional profiles, and ingredient quality in these two dog food brands so you could make an educative decision based on facts.

About Pedigree

The Pedigree story started in Manchester, England, back in 1932 under the name “Chappie.” The company got its name after the Chappel brothers who started a dog food manufacturing business. Two years later, the organization was purchased by Mars Limited and was rebranded into Petfoods, Ltd. in 1956. Only in 1972, the company decided to change the name to Pedigree Petfoods, Ltd.

1975 was the year when Pedigree became the subsidiary of Mars, the American group specializing in pet food manufacturing. As of now, this brand is among the world leaders in the pet food niche, which is loved by dog parents and their pets immensely. You can find their vibrant yellow packages and cans in most pet and even grocery stores.

Availability is probably one of the defining factors that explain the Pedigree popularity. Since this is considered to be a low-budget pet food option and this is the strongest selling point of this brand, the ingredients used in its recipes are not as appealing as the price.

Anyway, Pedigree offers a variety of kibble for puppies and adult canines of all sizes, including special diet recipes meant for oral, skin & care, weight control. You can also find a great assortment of wet formulas as well as mouthwatering dog treats.

Our Pedigree Top Picks

Is Pedigree better than Purina? This question requires thorough investigation, and we are on our way to revealing the truth. We’ll list the top three Pedigree products first and look closer at their ingredient composition, nutritional value, and then we will be able to compare them with Purina One recipes.

PEDIGREE® With Tender Bites for Small Dogs, Complete Nutrition Adult Dry Dog Food, Chicken & Steak Flavor Dog Kibble

If you have a small dog, this recipe might be a sound solution. It’s made to meet the dietary needs of representatives of small breeds, so it has optimal levels of protein (21%) and fat (11%) to ensure your pet has enough energy for active walks and playtime. The core of this recipe is ground whole grain corn, which is complemented by chicken by-product meal. These are not the best ingredients you can find in dog food, especially when they are in the first position. Anyway, what can you expect from a budget dog food option? The formula is enhanced with a pack of vitamins and minerals that nourishes the canine’s body.

PEDIGREE® Adult Roasted Chicken, Rice & Vegetable Flavor Dry Dog Food

Since canines have different nutritional needs at various stages of their life, Pedigree has designed a recipe that targets adult dogs. According to the company, this is a complete nutrition formula that will keep your canine full and well-nourished after every serving. With 21% protein and 10% fat, this food option looks like a decent nutritional profile. But when you take a closer look at the ingredient list, you see that very few proteins are obtained from meat. In fact, meat is not included in this recipe, only meat & bone meal and by-products could be found. This dog food has an elevated level of carbs due to the use of corn, soybeans, wheat, peas, rice, and other carbohydrate-packed ingredients.


If you are a happy owner of an active or working dog, you should consider a high-protein diet to ensure your canine gets enough nutrients to stay healthy. This wet dog food recipe by Pedigree promises 35% more proteins than in ordinary formulas, so it could be a great budget-friendly meal for your pet. The label says that this formula is made with real lamb and beef. That’s true, but these meat types follow chicken, meat by-products, wheat flour, salt, and wheat gluten. Compared to the brand’s kibble options, this wet recipe is free of corn, soy, and other plants that are not easily digested by canines. However, this formula includes an added artificial color, which is considered to be a harmful ingredient.

Pedigree Pros

  • Attractive price
  • Dogs love the flavors
  • Generally available
  • Wet recipes contain meat

Pedigree Cons

  • The heavy use of plants like corn, wheat, soybeans, peas, and other cheap fillers
  • Kibble recipes rely on by-products rather than meat
  • The formulas include preservatives, colors, and flavors
  • Very few animal proteins
  • Makes some dogs sick

Read our full Pedigree Dog Food Review.

About Purina One

As we embarked on defining which is better Pedigree or Purina dog food, we couldn’t miss a chance to bring up the question of Purina One quality.

Purina One (where “One” stands for "optimal nutrition enhancement") is a brand of Nestlé Purina PetCare. This is thought to be a premium quality brand with some functional ingredients that in combination can make healthy nutrition. The company believes that this brand is able to make a visible difference in the dog’s health.

Just like Pedigree, Purina One is widely available at grocery and pet stores, and it is also considered to be a low-budget dog food diet. But unlike Pedigree, Purina One has meat as the first ingredient, which makes it a superior brand to its counterpart.

The Purina One brand can’t boast of the use of exceptionally quality ingredients. Dry recipes contain real meat as the core ingredient but are still overpacked with cheap fillers that include wheat, corn, soybeans, peas, and others. You’ll also find by-products, colors, and artificial flavors along with preservatives that would never be found in premium quality food.

Our Purina Top Picks

Purina One seems to be a healthier alternative to Pedigree. But is Purina better than Pedigree? Let’s dig deeper to unveil the truth.

Purina ONE® SmartBlend® Chicken & Rice Formula Natural Adult Dog Food

For adult canines and their owners who would like to get balanced nutrition that won’t make a hole in their pocket, this recipe might be a bargain. It is made with real chicken as the first ingredient and is enhanced with SMARTBLEND, a mix of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants to support healthy skin, coat, immune system, and overall well-being. However, you’ll still find corn gluten meal, whole grain corn, chicken by-product meal, soybean meal, wheat, and other you’d-better-avoid ingredients. The nutritional value is also better in this recipe than in an average Pedigree formula. It has 26% proteins and 16% fats with 3% of fiber, but the amount of animal protein is pretty much questionable.

Purina ONE® SmartBlend® Digestive Health Formula with Real Chicken Dog Food

If you can’t feed just any food to your pet because of the sensitive tummy, consider the formula designed to support digestive health. This Purina One recipe has chicken as the first ingredient. It also contains probiotics that enhance digestibility. The formula is packed with a SMARTBLEND supplement, a combination of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, that improve the sight, skin, coat, and general health of your canine. Customers report that the dogs’ well-being has improved since they switched to this recipe. No stomach issues are found in the majority of pets. However, this kibble also includes whole grain corn, soybean meal, meat by-products, preservatives, and colors that do not support gut health in any way.

Purina ONE SmartBlend True Instinct Classic Ground Grain-Free Dog Food Formula With Real Beef & Bison

This nature-inspired recipe is a meaty blend of nutrients that satisfy a dog's craving for meat. The wet recipe is made of real chicken and beef as the first ingredients, which are then complemented with meat broth, liver, pork lungs, and bison to make sure your pet gets enough meat for their dinner. It is also enhanced with vitamins and minerals that contribute to the canine’s health. On top of that, this is a grain-free recipe, so it will do for senior dogs or adult pets that do not tolerate grains. Because of the soft and tender texture, this food is a great choice for older pets with dental issues. You can use this food as a kibble topper or an individual meal. Anyway, your four-pawed friend will love this recipe.

Purina Pros

  • Meat is the first ingredient
  • Packed with SMARTBLEND vitamins and mineral complex
  • An affordable price
  • Available in most grocery stores
  • A wide product lineup with recipes for all dietary needs

Purina Cons

  • Still includes corn, wheat, soy, and by-products

Read our full Purina One Dog Food Review.

Types of Dog Food from Purina and Pedigree

Let’s compare Pedigree vs Purina One product variety. It seems that Pedigree has a wider selection of products, especially wet dog food recipes. But let’s see if the assortment meets the dietary needs of different types of dogs.

Product type


Purina One

Dry Dog Food

12 products

18 products

Wet Dog Food

62 products

18 products

Dog Treats

16 products

4 products

Pedigree dog food brand includes a great selection of kibble that targets dogs of all sizes. There are recipes for small, medium, and large dog breeds. No special products are designed for senior canines, but there is one formula for puppies, and the rest of the recipes are made with adult dogs in mind. If your pet has extra weight, you can get a weight control recipe with a lower carbohydrate content. There are dry recipes that fuel active, sporting, and working dogs because of high protein levels.

Wet recipes have several product lineups that include High Protein, Traditional Ground Dinner, Choice Cuts, and Homestyle Meals that unite formulas with various flavors and textures.

The flavor selection of Pedigree dog food includes beef, lamb, chicken, turkey, cheeseburger, bacon, and some more flavors. But none of the dry recipes has real meat among ingredients, so the taste is enhanced with flavors rather than wholesome products.

Comparing Purina vs Pedigree dog food, it’s evident that the Purina One selection of dog food options is smaller. But even though the product variety is smaller, this brand covers more canines that have different nutritional needs due to the life stage, size, or health condition. You can find recipes for large puppies or those canines that require joint support. There are also high-protein (True Instinct) recipes or the ones for canines with poor digestion.

Wet recipes by Purina One are not numerous, but they have some healthy ingredients and a decent amount of meat to satisfy the canine’s instincts.

So, when comparing the Purina or Pedigree variety, we came to the conclusion that Pedigree has more products in total, but Purina One features a greater diversity in their recipes and formulas to meet the needs of different canines.

Nutritional Value Comparison

You don’t feed your pooch for the sake of filling their tummy, do you? You expect the food to be nourishing and beneficial for your dog. And the nutritional portfolio is crucial when defining whether the food has some value or not.

Here’s a comparison of Pedigree or Purina nutritional value. We took dry and wet recipes into account separately and defined an average percentage for each nutrient type.


Purina One

Dry food













Wet food













You can see from the chart that Pedigree sacrifices nutritional value for the sake of an attractive price. If you compare Pedigree vs Purina One by this criterion, Purina One is a better choice due to the higher level of protein and a moderate level of fat. However, how much meat proteins are there, and if they are nourishing enough, remains an open question.

Ingredients and Flavours Comparison

Purina One is definitely a leader if you take ingredient quality and flavor variety into account. Firstly, you’d definitely want to feed your pet with meat and some variety of veggies, fruit, and wholesome grains.

Even though Purina One is not a perfect role model with its ingredient list, it doesn’t look that bad if you compare it with Pedigree. Purina One kibble has meat as the first ingredient with added corn, wheat, soy, by-products, and artificial flavor and taste enhancers.

In contrast to Purina One, Pedigree doesn’t pamper its customers with real meat and resort to adding by-products and bone meal.

The flavor assortment looks pretty much the same as both companies offer chicken, beef, lamb, turkey, and some more tastes. But pay attention that only Purina One includes real meat, which means that Pedigree solely relies on by-products and artificial colors and flavors to get the desired taste.

Purina One also offers some wild flavors through its special product series called True Instincts. Your canine can finally unleash its true nature by enjoying the bison or real beef flavors. This brand also offers grain-free kibble, but we doubt one can call it completely grain-free as these recipes still include wheat, soy, corn, even though their amount is diminished.

Price Comparison

If you’ve been hunting for a dog food brand with the lowest prices, meet the winner - Pedigree. This brand is definitely a winner, and the price actually explains its popularity regardless of the not-that-perfect ingredient list.

Purina One stays within the segment of affordable dog food brands, but the prices for its recipes are higher. When you know that meat is the first ingredient, you can spend some extra money to get food that would benefit your canine.


Purina One

Dry dog food

Per pound



Per calorie



Wet dog food

Per pound



Per calorie



Product Safety and Recall History

Pedigree dog food was subject to numerous recalls and safety concerns. The first recall took place in March 2004 because some recipes were linked to kidney failures in dogs. In September 2007, the Pedigree brand entitled “Chilled dog rolls” marketed in New Zealand was recalled because of metal fragments found in this food.

In August 2008 and September 2008, some dog food recipes were recalled because of potential salmonella infection. Three canned Pedigree dog foods were recalled in June 2012 due to the possible choking hazard, and in August 2014, small metal fragments were found again in Pedigree kibble.

Purina One recipes have been recalled only two times. In July 2011, Purina ONE Vibrant Maturity 7+ dry cat food was recalled because of potential salmonella risk. Nearly two years later, one of the Purina ONE Beyond recipes was also recalled for the same reason.

It looks like Purina One dog food has fewer defects in the manufacturing process. None of the cases included the presence of any foreign bodies, unlike Pedigree with at least two huge recalls and constant customer complaints about the food quality.

Pedigree vs Purina Dog Food: Which Should You Choose?

At some point, we felt that it’s pretty unfair to compare these two brands because they serve two different missions. The Pedigree brand promises us to provide the best food possible at the most attractive price. So, when you buy food under this brand, you do not expect it to have super-premium quality. Because, in fact, quality food costs way much more.

Purina One, on the contrary, offers delicious, breed- and size-appropriate recipes that are meant to enhance the health of our furry companions without breaking the bank. The focus of this brand is on the product variety that covers the needs of different dogs. The company assures that through the mix of natural ingredients that would be a part of your canine’s daily diet, you’ll see a dramatic difference in how your pet behaves.

But when you take a closer look at the nutritional profiles of these brands and keep their popularity in mind (Pedigree is the brand with the highest sales rate all over the globe and Purina One is only several steps away from it), everything becomes clear. These brands have more things in common than we assume.

We can’t say that these are the perfect brands, but you'll love them if the price is the defining factor for you. Because you don’t have to spend a huge part of your family budget to keep your pet full, these options look appealing to many dog owners.

Answering the question “Purina vs Pedigree which is better,” We would say that it depends. If you are in search of the most affordable dog food brand and are ready to sacrifice quality for the sake of the lower price tag, Pedigree is definitely your choice. But if you have some extra money and are ready to spend it on your pet’s nutrition, Purina One is what you should stick with.

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