Wet or Dry Dog Food: Which is Better?

This post may contain affiliate links. It doesn't cost you anything extra and it keeps our lights on, our families fed, and our dogs spoiled. For all the juicy fine print, see our affiliate disclosure

Your responsibility as a dog owner is to feed your dogs regularly and ensure that they get the nutrients they need to grow and become healthy. This everyday ritual is not tricky. 

Out of love for your pets, preparing the food for them becomes autopilot for you.

When you wake up in the morning and go to your pantry to get some food for your dogs, everything seems to be ready for them.

But the challenging part is what kind of food to buy.

  • Will you give your dogs the same food over and over again for the rest of their lives?
  • Should you offer a variety of balanced diets?
  • Or do you pick up whatever is available for them?

You may not know whether your pets are complaining or not about the meals you provide them every day, so it is essential to discover what they like without compromising what you think is best for them.

For example, should you give them wet or dry dog food? And why? Read further below to find out.

Related: Royal Canin vs Purina Pro Plan Dog Food

Are Wet or Dry Foods Better for Dogs?

Both types of dog food have their respective advantages and disadvantages depending on your situation and your dog’s particular need.

So let’s continue and find out more.

Dry Food

Dry dog food pros and cons


Dry dog food, in the form of kibble, has a longer shelf life[1]. If you open the packaging, the kibble won’t get rotten overnight.

Likewise, the leftovers won’t get contaminated in the open area, even for an extended period. 

For budget-conscious pet lovers, dry food is a better choice. There is almost no waste, and it is less expensive.

Moreover, dry food is dense, so your dogs will get more out of less consumption.

If dry dog food offers you certain benefits, what will your dog benefit from it?

Is Your Dog Driving You Nuts During the Day?

Indoor Activities for Dogs

Get Our List of 11 Awesome Indoor Activities to Keep Your Dog Busy and Out of Trouble!

Because dry foods have less moisture, a significant amount of water with zero nutritional value has been removed.

That is why they are rich in protein and carbohydrates for added energy and muscle development.

Aside from that, dry kibble is a better alternative to bones. It is like dogs chewing bones to relieve stress.

Such activity strengthens their teeth and gums. It prevents plaque and tartar buildup on the teeth while delivering a soothing massage on the gums.

Related: Can’t Decide? Check Out the Best Wet Dog Foods to Mix with Dry Kibble


Since dry dog foods have less water, they are not suitable for nearly dehydrated dogs.

Unfortunately, they also have fewer fats which your dogs should need in the right amount.

Also, they contain more preservatives that may be harmful to health in the long run.

Wet Food

Wet dog food pros and cons


Wet dog foods like canned foods contain around 70% water[2]. Therefore, they are fresher and closer to being organic.

In addition, they are softer, so your dogs can easily chew and digest them – perfect for dogs with broken teeth.

Some dogs tend to get overweight because of eating. In that case, wet foods are for them to feel full even without consuming so much protein.


Wet foods get easily spoiled within 48 hours.

When you give your dogs, make sure there won’t be any leftovers, but this is almost impossible. There is likely excess food that you will throw away.

What do Dogs Prefer?

Unquestionably, dogs prefer wet dry foods because they are palatable.

In addition, they contain a high amount of fats that make foods delectable. Their freshness also contributes to the improved taste.

Is Wet Dog Food Better Than Dry?

It’s difficult to say if wet dog food is better than dry. Both have pros and cons.

However, dry food would be better for you if you are on the go and have no time to get into the nitty-gritty of wet food preparation.

But if your dog drinks less water, wet food is a better source of fluid.

Wet Food Prevents Dehydration

A dog’s body is made of 70% water. This amount is in similar parallel with wet foods, which are also composed of 70% water.

Therefore, every bite of wet food contributes to the proportional demand of the body.

Of course, your dog may need more water, especially when the weather is hot, but wet food is enough to prevent dehydration.

Dogs Poop Less with Wet Food

Because wet dog food is easy to digest and metabolize, your dog will poop less if you regularly feed it with wet food.

But keep in mind that there are many factors to consider why a dog poops more.

For example, it might be that the dog has a stomach problem or something the dog has eaten that causes diarrhea.

Wet Dog Food Might Cause Diarrhea

The possibility of wet food causing diarrhea is very likely[3]. It is prone to contamination because its significant amount of moisture is a breeding ground for bacteria.

But just because it is prone doesn’t necessarily mean it is always the cause of it. For example, if you give your dog wet food fresh from the can, it’s still possible for your dog to have diarrhea.

However, be careful when switching from kibble to canned dog food. Dogs that are used to eating kibble usually experience diarrhea when suddenly switched to wet food.

It is the abrupt change in the manner of diet that causes it and not the food itself.

Is Wet Dog Food Bad for Puppies?

Puppies are still mammals naturally introduced with breast milk which is a kind of wet food, too.

So wet food is not bad for puppies. However, they need more fluid, more fats, more calcium and protein present in wet foods.

The best food for very young puppies is puppy gruel.


There is no absolute answer as to which type of dog food is better between wet and dry. The quality of being better is relative.

What is better for you may not be better for another dog owner.

Besides, not all dogs are the same, and every dog’s physical condition changes, too. 

Therefore, you can’t have your dog eat a single type of food all the time. So there are times you should switch to another kind.

A combination approach may not also be a wise option if either dry or wet dog food is much needed.

The type of food doesn’t matter. What matters is the content.

Whether it is wet or dry, you must optimize the nutrient content of the food for your dog’s needs.


  1. https://www.rover.com/blog/does-dog-food-go-bad/#:~:text=unopened%20dry%20pet%20foods%20have%20a%20shelf%20life%20of%2012%2D18%20months%2C%20while%20unopened%20canned%20foods%20are%20good%20for%20two%20years%20from%20the%20date%20of%20manufacture
  2. https://www.petcarerx.com/article/what-is-moisture-in-dog-food/843
  3. https://www.petcoach.co/question/?id=128497
Wet or Dry Dog Food Which is Better - Pinterest Pin

Eliminate Bad Dog Breath Without Brushing

Fresh Breathies