Thinking about switching your canine companion to turkey-based dog food? It’s a smart choice for sure!
Turkey is a hearty protein source dogs love – turkey dog food is a smart option for dogs that have allergy issues with traditional meats like chicken and beef, or for dogs that are simply a bit pickier and want to try new tastes!
Today we’re detailing what to keep in mind when selecting a turkey dog food, as well as a few of our favorite top picks.
Can’t wait? Our top pick for the best turkey dog food is Merrick’s Grain Free Turkey Dog Food!.
For more info and detailed reviews, continue reading!
Turkey Dog Food: Things to Consider When Shopping
When selecting a turkey dog food for your four-legged pal, keep these points in mind:
- Just Turkey Or Other Protein As Well? Due to allergy issues, some owners may want a pure turkey protein source with no other meats. This is especially important for owners who may be in the process of deciphering their dog’s allergy issues. One the other hand, some owners may just be looking for quality proteins outside of the usual beef or chicken arena.
While all dog foods evaluated here contain turkey, some contain turkey as well as other quality meat sources like quail, or free-range chicken.
- Grain-Free And Then Some. All of the dog food we evaluated are grain-free. However, there’s more to a good dog food than just being grain free – you’ll also want to look for dog foods that contain little to no fillers and don’t rely too much on plant protein sources.
Some plant proteins are fine, but ideally you’ll want a dog food that delivers protein through meat, not plants, since that is a more natural diet for a dog.
- Additional Benefits & Ingredients. Some of the turkey dog food listed here contains additional benefits, such as glucosamine for joint health, or chicory root and other probiotics to aid in digestion. These bonus ingredients may vary in importance depending on your dog’s needs.
- Look at First Ingredient (& 2nd, & 3rd). Many owners know that the first ingredient in dog food is the primary ingredient.
However, it’s important to look at the 2nd and 3rd ingredients as well. If the 2nd and 3rd ingredients are also meat proteins, you know that brand of dog food has great levels of meat protein.
- Deboned Turkey vs. Turkey Meal. It’s also worth noting that, while turkey meal doesn’t sound as appealing as deboned turkey, turkey meal actually contains much more protein than whole turkey because of the way the meat is rendered. However, any labeling of general “meat meal” without noting the specific protein, or any mention of “by-product”should be avoided.
Blue Buffalo Basics: Turkey & Potato
About:Blue Buffalo Basics is a grain-free dog food with turkey as the main protein. Blue Buffalo lists turkey as the first ingredients, with Dog Food Advisor listing it at 23% protein.
Price: $66.97 | Buy on Amazon
- Relies on turkey as the main protein (with it as the first ingredient).
- Has oatmeal, potatoes, and brown rice for carbohydrate sources, which are easy to digest.
- Includes a blend of veggies, fruit, and micronutrients.
- No corn, wheat, soy, or dairy. Also contains no chicken or poultry by-product meals.
- Contains calcium and phosphorus to promote bone and teeth health.
- Omega 3 and Omega 6 for healthier skin and coat.
- Boosts immune health with vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants – also contains Glucosamine to support healthy joint function.
- Available in 4 / 11 / 24 lb bags
- Made in the USA
Turkey, Turkey Broth, Potatoes, Flaxseed (source of Omega 3 and 6 Fatty Acids), Pea Protein...,
Fish Oil (source of Omega 3 Fatty Acids), Pumpkin, Guar Gum, Potassium Chloride, Salt, Carrageenan, Cassia Gum, Cranberries, Blueberries, Choline Chloride, Mixed Tocopherols, Glucosamine Hydrochloride, Chondroitin Sulfate, Vitamin E Supplement, L-Ascorbyl-2-Polyphosphate (source of Vitamin C), Zinc Amino Acid Chelate, Iron Amino Acid Chelate, Copper Amino Acid Chelate, Manganese Amino Acid Chelate, Sodium Selenite, Thiamine Mononitrate (Vitamin B1), Cobalt Amino Acid Chelate, Niacin Supplement (Vitamin B3), Calcium Pantothenate (Vitamin B5), Vitamin A Supplement, Riboflavin Supplement (Vitamin B2), Biotin (Vitamin B7), Vitamin B12 Supplement, Potassium Iodide, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride (Vitamin B6), Vitamin D3 Supplement, Folic Acid (Vitamin B9).
More affordable than many other turkey-based dog foods, and while not the highest quality dog food, it certainly isn’t the worst either.
While this is a decent turkey-based dog food, is comes out to 23% protein according to evaluations by Dog Food Advisor, which is a bit lower than similar turkey dog foods on this list. Even this protein level seems largely due to the peas, alfalfa meal, and flaxseed, with relatively modest amount of meat.
Merrick Grain Free Turkey Dog Food
About:Merrick Grain Free Turkey Dog Food features a formula with turkey as the meat protein source, along with complimenting fresh fruits and veggies.
Price: Price not available | Buy on Amazon
- Turkey is first ingredient in this grain-free recipe.
- No corn, wheat, soy, or gluten.
- Contains farm-fresh fruits & vegetables like sweet potatoes, blueberries, and peas.
- Rich in Omega 3 and Omega 6 to promote healthy skin and coat.
- Contains Glucosamine + Chondroitin for canine joint health.
- Food is prepare in an organic-certified kitchen and is cooked in individual batches.
- No ingredients from China, made in the USA.
- Available in 4 lb / 12 lb / 24 lb bags
The first three ingredients in Merrick’s formula are turkey, turkey meal, and chicken meal. This means that this dog food is loaded with authentic, meat protein. On average, Merrick’s food has a protein content of 39%, which is very high! This is why Dog Food Advisor gives Merrick’s Grain Free food 5 out of 5 stars.
Merrick has recently been bought out by Purina, and some owners worry that this will affect the future quality of this dog food.
Deboned Turkey, Turkey Meal, Chicken Meal, Sweet Potatoes, Potatoes...,
Peas, Salmon Meal, Natural Flavor, Chicken Fat (Preserved with Mixed Tocopherols), Flaxseed Oil, Apples, Blueberries, Organic Alfalfa, Salmon Oil (Source of Omega 3 Fatty Acids), Salt, Minerals (Zinc Sulfate, Iron Amino Acid Complex, Zinc Amino Acid Complex, Manganese Amino Acid Complex, Copper Amino Acid Complex, Potassium Iodide, Cobalt Amino Acid Complex, Sodium Selenite), Vitamins (Vitamin E Supplement, Vitamin A Acetate, Vitamin B12 Supplement, D-Calcium Pantothenate, Vitamin D3 Supplement, Niacin, Riboflavin Supplement, Biotin, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Folic Acid, Thiamine Mononitrate), Choline Chloride, Yucca Schidigera Extract, Dried Lactobacillus Plantarum Fermentation Product, Dried Lactobacillus Casei Fermentation Product, Dried Enterococcus Faecium Fermentation Product, Dried Lactobacillus Acidophilus Fermentation Product, Rosemary Extract.
Wellness Simple Limited Ingredient Turkey Dog Food
About: Wellness Simple Ingredients Turkey Dog Food is a quality, grain-free dog food that relies on turkey as its meat protein source. This food also contain ingredients like chicory root which promotes healthy bacteria in your dog’s digestive tract.
Price: $61.89 | Buy on Amazon
- Limited ingredients, ideal for dogs with food allergies or sensitive stomachs.
- High-quality turkey as protein source, listed as first ingredient.
- No grains, gluten, or wheat. No fillers or artificial additives.
- Include probiotics and prebiotics to make food easily digestible.
- Contains flaxseed for healthy skin.
- Made in the USA.
- Available in 4.5 lb / 10.5 lb / 26 lb bag.
First ingredient are turkey and turkey meal, which means this food has a solid amount of quality meat protein. This food also has additional ingredients to make the food easy to digest, so it’s an especially good choice for dogs with digestive troubles.
The average protein content is 28% from Dog Food Advisor, which is good but not amazing.
Deboned Turkey, Turkey Meal, Potatoes, Peas, Dried Ground Potatoes...,
Tomato Pomace, Ground Flaxseed, Canola Oil (Preserved with Mixed Tocopherols), Natural Turkey Flavor, Dicalcium Phosphate, Chicory Root Extract, Vitamin E Supplement, Choline Chloride, Taurine, Mixed Tocopherols Added to Preserve Freshness, Zinc Proteinate, Zinc Sulfate, Calcium Carbonate, Niacin, Ferrous Sulfate, Iron Proteinate, Beta-Carotene, Vitamin A Supplement, Copper Sulfate, Thiamine Mononitrate, Copper Proteinate, Manganese Proteinate, Manganese Sulfate, D-Calcium Pantothenate, Sodium Selenite, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Riboflavin, Vitamin D3 Supplement, Biotin, Calcium Iodate, Vitamin B12 Supplement, Folic Acid, Ascorbic Acid (Vitamin C), Dried Lactobacillus Plantarum Fermentation Product, Dried Enterococcus Faecium Fermentation Product, Dried Lactobacillus Casei Fermentation Product, Dried Lactobacillus Acidophilus Fermentation Product, Rosemary Extract, Green Tea Extract, Spearmint Extract. Old Formulation: Deboned Turkey, Turkey Meal, Potatoes, Peas, Dried Ground Potatoes, Tomato Pomace, Ground Flaxseed, Canola Oil (Preserved with Mixed Tocopherols), Natural Turkey Flavor, Dicalcium Phosphate, Chicory Root Extract, Vitamins [Vitamin E Supplement, Beta-Carotene, Niacin, D-Calcium Pantothenate, Vitamin A Supplement, Riboflavin, Vitamin D-3 Supplement, Vitamin B-12 Supplement, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Thiamine Mononitrate, Ascorbic Acid (Vitamin C), Biotin, Folic Acid], Minerals [Zinc Proteinate, Zinc Sulfate, Iron Proteinate, Ferrous Sulfate, Copper Sulfate, Copper Proteinate, Manganese Proteinate, Manganese Sulfate, Sodium Selenite, Calcium Iodate], Choline Chloride, Mixed Tocopherols Added to Preserve Freshness, Taurine, Dried Lactobacillus Plantarum Fermentation Product, Dried Enterococcus Faecium Fermentation Product, Dried Lactobacillus Casei Fermentation Product, Dried Lactobacillus Acidophilus Fermentation Product, Rosemary Extract, Green Tea Extract.
Acana Heritage Free-Run Poultry
About: The Acana Heritage Free-Run Poultry formula is a dog food that uses turkey, chicken, and eggs as the primary protein sources. It has a high protein content percentage, with Acana being a well-respected brand amongst dog food enthusiasts.
Price: $63.99 | Buy on Amazon
- Protein sources are free-run (free-range) Cobb chicken, Tom turkey, and whole nest-laid eggs
- Mix of 60% free-run poultry and 40% veggies, fruits, and botanicals.
- Complimented with freeze-dried chicken liver
- No grain, potato, tapioca, glutens, or other plan protein concentrates
- Made in Acana Kentucky kitchens, in the USA
- Available in 4.5 lb / 13 lb / 25 lb bag
Very high-quality dog food, many dogs adore it. One owners notes that her diabetic dog’s glucose levels have improved after eating Acana. Acana also boasts an average protein content of 33% (measured by Dog Food Advisor), which is very high. This means your dog is getting a meaty, protein-packed dinner!
Due to the quality, this dog food isn’t cheap. A few owners observed diarrhea and upset stomachs in their dogs, but this appears to be extremely rare. While other dog food contain only turkey as the meat protein source, this food also uses chicken, which may be an issue for some dogs.
Deboned Chicken, Chicken Giblets (Liver, Heart, Gizzard), Chicken Meal, Whole Green Peas, Red Lentils...,
Pinto Beans, Deboned Turkey, Catfish Meal, Chicken Fat, Chickpeas, Green Lentils, Whole Yellow Peas, Sun-Cured Alfalfa, Chicken Cartilage, Whole Egg, Herring Oil, Natural Chicken Flavor, Turkey Cartilage, Dried Kelp, Whole Pumpkin, Whole Butternut Squash, Kale, Spinach, Mustard Greens, Collard Greens, Turnip Greens, Carrots, Apples, Pears, Freeze-Dried Chicken Liver, Freeze-Dried Turkey Liver, Zinc Proteinate, Mixed Tocopherols (Preservative), Chicory Root, Turmeric, Sarsaparilla Root, Althea Root, Rose Hips, Juniper Berries, Dried Lactobacillus Acidophilus Fermentation Product, Dried Bifidobacterium Animalis Fermentation Product, Dried Lactobacillus Casei Fermentation Product.
Fromm Four Star Nutrionals Game Bird Dog Food
Price: $26.69 | Buy on Amazon
- Main protein sources are turkey, duck, quail, and pheasant (but no chicken)!
- No grain, corn, wheat, or soy
- Contains Yucca Schidigera extract, which helps reduce the smell of your dog’s stool
- Contains chicory root to reduce risk of worms
- Contains taurine to help develop heart and eyes, as well as chicken cartilage to promote joint health
- Made with USDA inspected ingredients and made in the USA
- Available in 4 lb / 12lb / 26 lbs bags
Owners note that this kibble is smaller than most, making it an especially good choice for petite canines. Fromm Four Star Nutrionals clocks in with 32% protein content, which is above average, making this a very meaty dog food and earning high praise from Dog Food Advisor.
This dog food is a mix of several game bird proteins, so it won’t be the best choice for owners looking for only turkey meat as a protein source.
Duck, Duck Meal, Peas, Turkey, Potatoes...,
Pea Protein, Dried Tomato Pomace, Pea Flour, Whole Dried Eggs, Quail, Chicken Meal, Chicken Fat (Preserved with Mixed Tocopherols), Salmon Oil (Preserved with Mixed Tocopherols), Sweet Potatoes, Chicken, Pheasant, Cheese, Flaxseed, Carrots, Broccoli, Cauliflower, Apples, Celery, Parsley, Lettuce, Spinach, Chicken Cartilage, Potassium Chloride, Blueberries, Cranberries, Salt, Chicory Root Extract, Yucca Schidigera Extract, Alfalfa Sprouts, Sodium Selenite, Folic Acid, Taurine, Vitamins, Minerals, Probiotics.
Best Turkey Dog Food: Which Wins?
All the turkey dog foods we reviewed here today are good picks. Some offer different advantages – owners of senior dogs may want to give preference to dog foods with glucosamine and/or chondroitin, while owners of dogs with very sensitive tummies may want dog food with extra probiotics.
However, overall our top pick goes to Merrick Grain Free Turkey Dog Food!
Merrick’s first three ingredients are all meat, resulting in an extraordinarily high protein content percent. It also receives 5 stars from Dog Food Advisor and has other ingredient benefits like Glucosamine and Omega 3 & 6!
Have you ever tried any of these turkey dog food brands? Share your experience in the comments!