Written On: November 20th, 2019
DISCLAIMER: We read through the ingredients and did our best to find accurate information at the time of writing this article.
However, this is no replacement for veterinary guidance and you should consult your vet when deciding which food to feed your dog.
Especially if they have special needs when it comes to diet or ingredients.
Also, any percentages, ingredients and information in this article is from the time it was written and if any changes were made to these dog foods after NOVEMBER 20th, 2019 we have not yet changed this article to reflect them.
If we notice there have been changes we will try to update this article and we will include the changes made in a small update at the top of this article.
Choosing your dogs’ diet is one of the most important foundation pieces for your dog’s health and longevity. Let’s take a look at a couple of brands.
It is a Blue Buffalo vs Merrick showdown! We will go through and explore their ingredient lists and guaranteed analyses.
Blue Buffalo Introduction:
The Blue Buffalo brand developed from a familie’s desire to help their dog with cancer. They worked with holistic vets to develop their products. They say that they use only the highest quality ingredients and real meat.
Merrick was first started in 1988 by Garth Merrick. He started making food for his own dog Gracie preparing for her the most wholesome and nutritious foods he could. The company chooses to use wholefoods from its trusted farmers.
Blue Buffalo vs Merrick
Ingredients For Blue Buffalo Life Protection Chicken and Brown Rice:
Deboned Chicken, Chicken Meal, Brown Rice, Barley, Oatmeal, Pea Starch, Flaxseed (source of Omega 3 and 6 Fatty Acids), Chicken Fat (preserved with Mixed Tocopherols), Dried Tomato Pomace, Natural Flavor, Peas, Pea Protein, Salt, Potassium Chloride, Dehydrated Alfalfa Meal, Potatoes, Dried Chicory Root, Pea Fiber, Alfalfa Nutrient Concentrate, Calcium Carbonate, Choline Chloride, DL-Methionine, Preserved with Mixed Tocopherols, Dicalcium Phosphate, Sweet Potatoes, Carrots, Garlic, Zinc Amino Acid Chelate, Zinc Sulfate, Vegetable Juice for color, Ferrous Sulfate, Vitamin E Supplement, Iron Amino Acid Chelate, Blueberries, Cranberries, Barley Grass, Parsley, Turmeric, Dried Kelp, Yucca Schidigera Extract, Niacin (Vitamin B3), Glucosamine Hydrochloride, Calcium Pantothenate (Vitamin B5), Copper Sulfate, Biotin (Vitamin B7), L-Ascorbyl-2-Polyphosphate (source of Vitamin C), L-Lysine, L-Carnitine, Vitamin A Supplement, Copper Amino Acid Chelate, Manganese Sulfate, Taurine, Manganese Amino Acid Chelate, Thiamine Mononitrate (Vitamin B1), Riboflavin (Vitamin B2), Vitamin D3 Supplement, Vitamin B12 Supplement, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride (Vitamin B6), Calcium Iodate, Dried Yeast, Dried Enterococcus faecium fermentation product, Dried Lactobacillus acidophilus fermentation product, Dried Aspergillus niger fermentation extract, Dried Trichoderma longibrachiatum fermentation extract, Dried Bacillus subtilis fermentation extract, Folic Acid (Vitamin B9), Sodium Selenite, Oil of Rosemary.
First, dried tomato pomace. Some people consider this as well as pea fibers a filler ingredient.
Pea protein is next. Pea protein is about 80% protein which bumps up the overall protein content of the product but this is only one of the ingredients that provides protein.
Alfalfa nutrient concentrate is also about 50% protein. And then of course there is the meat included in the recipe.
Dried yeast, some dogs are allergic to this so be cautious if your dog is.
One other thing to note is that flaxseeds are the source of omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids.
Ingredients for Merrick Classic Beef, Peas with Ancient Grains:
Deboned Beef, Pork Meal, Peas, Brown Rice, Barley, Pork Fat (preserved with mixed tocopherols), Lamb Meal, Natural Flavor, Pea Protein, Oatmeal, Quinoa, Beef Liver, Salmon Meal, Carrots, Apples, Flaxseed Oil (source of Omega-3 fatty acids), Blueberries, Chia Seed, Organic Dried Alfalfa Meal, Salt, Choline Chloride, Minerals (Iron Amino Acid Complex, Zinc Amino Acid Complex, Zinc Sulfate, Sodium Selenite, Manganese Amino Acid Complex, Copper Amino Acid Complex, Potassium Iodide, Cobalt Proteinate, Cobalt Carbonate), Yucca Schidigera Extract, Vitamins (Vitamin E Supplement, Vitamin B12 Supplement, Vitamin A Acetate, d-Calcium Pantothenate, Thiamine Mononitrate, Niacin, Riboflavin Supplement, Biotin, Vitamin D3 Supplement, Folic Acid, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride), Dried Lactobacillus plantarum Fermentation Product, Dried Lactobacillus casei Fermentation Product, Dried Enterococcus faecium Fermentation Product, Dried Lactobacillus acidophilus Fermentation Product.
We have discussed many of these already with the Blue Buffalo ingredient list but let’s touch quickly on a few.
Pea protein is about 80% protein, which is good for the overall protein but more is required, therefor, that is why more ingredients with protein are included.
Flax oil is the source of omega fatty acids.
Organic dried alfalfa meal is the next ingredient of interest. This is typically thought of as more of a horse feed. However, I would argue that a grass like alfalfa is a more normal ingredient for a dog to eat then grains are.
Next, we have 4 probiotic sources which are great for your dog.
One more thing to take note of, both foods have added vitamin B12.
Guaranteed Analysis For Blue Buffalo Life Protection Chicken and Brown Rice
Crude Protein 24.0% (min)
Crude Fat 14.0% (min)
Crude Fiber 5.0% (max)
Moisture 10.0% (max)
Calcium 1.0% (min)
Phosphorus 0.7% (min)
Omega 3 Fatty Acids 0.5% (min)
Omega 6 Fatty Acids 3.0% (min)
Glucosamine 400 mg/kg (min)
This food is 44% carbs 33% fat and only 23% protein. This is abou therange of the average percentage of protein dog food should have.
The addition of glucosamine is nice because this can help your dog’s joints. This recipe includes 400 mg of it.
Again the food does have omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids that aren’t from the best source but nonetheless they are included.
Guaranteed Analysis for Merrick Classic Beef, Peas with Ancient Grains:
Crude protein 30% (min)
Crude fat 15% (min)
Crude fiber 3.5% (max)
Moisture 11% (max)
Omega-6 fatty acid 2.00% (min)
Omega-3 fatty acid 0.30% (min)
Glucosamine 1200 mg/kg (min)
Chondroitin sulfate 1200 mg/kg (min)
Merrick contains slightly fewer carbs only 36% carbs, 35% fat, and 29% protein. It does have a bit more protein than Blue Buffalo too, which is in Merrick’s favor.
Both contain omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids,.
Merrick contains more glucosamine than Blue Buffalo. And we couldn’t confirm the Chondroitin sulfate of Blue Buffalo at the time of writing this.
Blue Buffalo Flavors Available:
- Red Meat
Merrick Flavors Available:
Blue Buffalo Options:
You can purchase Blue Buffalo in wet or dry formulas.
They also sell options for puppies, adult dogs, and senior dogs.
You can choose small and large breed formulas as well.
They also have options for weight management, grain-free, high-protein, food sensitive, limited ingredient, small bites, and prey feeding.
You can choose from wet or dry Merrick foods. Merrick offers puppy, adult, and senior formulas. You can also choose from x-small, small, medium, and large breed varieties.
Moreover, choose from with grain, grain-free, potato-free, poultry-free, fish-free, corn-free, soy-free, and wheat-free.
So who wins our Blue Buffalo vs Merrick competition? I’m going to have to go with Merrick. Their food offers fewer carbs and more protein.