Is Fresh Delivery Food Right for Your Dog?

| Jodie Otter MSW

Switching to fresh delivery dog food? We explain what fresh food is, why it's different than kibble, delivery options & how to determine what's right for your dog.


Does your pup need to make some changes to their diet this year? Have supply-chain issues made you consider switching to one of those new delivery dog food brands that are popping up all over the internet?

Dogs love food as much as we do. Fresh food? Sounds great! Delivered to your front door? Even better! But is fresh food as good for your dog as it sounds? Let’s take a look at how dog food delivery works and consider the benefits and risks of making the switch from your dog’s favorite kibble.

Why Do People Like Fresh Delivery Dog Food?

Where did all of these brands come from? Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, delivery dog food saw an increase in popularity similar to that of human food. Much of the appeal stems from the availability of options, online reviews, and convenience. Carrying a giant bag of dog food to your car or on public transportation isn’t very fun, so fresh delivery dog food takes away the hassle by bringing it right to your doorstop, ready to eat!

What Is Fresh Dog Food?

Difference Between Fresh Food and Kibble

You may be familiar with the packaged, dry dog food available at the grocery store. Commercial dog food is, well, dry, and it has a longer shelf-life compared to wet or fresh food. Unlike kibble, fresh pet food has little to no preservatives, prioritizing fresh ingredients over shelf life.

What Does “Fresh Pet Food” Mean Exactly?

Since fresh delivery dog food is still such a new and changing industry, the term “fresh pet food” means different things depending on who you ask. While it is commonly used to refer to food made with limited preservatives by a dog food brand, it is also used interchangeably with fresh pet food you make yourself by mixing ingredients (such as boiled chicken and rice). If you’re not up for cooking food yourself, many fresh dog food brands cook and package ingredients to take the prep work out of giving your dog a fresh meal.

Why Would I Choose Delivery Dog Food?

Fresh delivery dog food may improve your dog’s health and appearance, at least according to fans of the fresh food diet. With reported benefits such as shinier coats and healthier hearts, for some, fresh dog food makes all the difference in keeping a pet happy and healthy. While these benefits may sound fantastic, it is not always a realistic option for families, since buying fresh ingredients and preparing meals for your dog every day can take time and cost a lot of money. Even if you’re dedicated to making your dog’s food on your own, the American Kennel Club notes that “most homemade diets do not undergo the scrutiny and rigorous testing applied to commercial complete and balanced diets. If pet owners wish to feed their pets homemade diets, the diets should be prepared and cooked using recipes formulated by a veterinary nutritionist.” That’s where dog food delivery brands come in. Companies can cook, package, and deliver fresh food for your dog when you need it, without the hassle of planning.

A Variety of Delivery Options

There’s more to delivery dog food than just convenience. If your dog has a specific need, there are dozens of brands out there that might be a good match for your pup. Looking for allergy-friendly foods? Many companies will build a diet for your dog so they can get the nutrition they need without the tummy ache. How about a diet built around your dog’s genetic make-up? Many brands will formulate a food to combat illnesses and conditions suffered by a specific breed. Does your dog lack self-control around their food? There is no need to worry about counting calories when your dog food brand offers pre-packaged portions to keep your dog from over or under-eating.

Looking for more ways to go all-out for your dog? Take a look at another trend in the dog food world: air-dried food. Unfortunately, life happens, so even if we plan to use our fresh dog food, it could end up lost in the back of the refrigerator. Air-dried food is a great solution to this problem. Like dried fruit or jerky, air-dried dog food contains no fillers and has the shelf-life of kibble and the nutrition of fresh food. Another bonus: air-dried food lacks the moisture of fresh food, meaning its compact size can save storage space in your kitchen.

What Food Is Best for My Dog?

Your dog is one-of-a-kind, and so are their dietary needs. We can’t say for sure what the best food or diet will be for your unique pet, but the dog food market is expanding and providing options fit for every dog and budget. We recommend consulting your veterinarian to determine what's in your dog’s best interest.

No matter which brand you choose, always base your decision around answers to these questions:

  • How nutritious is this food?

  • Does it meet my dog’s allergy needs?

  • Does it provide my dog with enough calories for their activity level?

  • Does my dog like the taste of this food?

  • Am I able to store and prepare my dog’s food based on the brand’s recommendations?

Looking for another way to protect your dog’s health? AKC Pet Insurance (underwritten by Independence American Insurance Company) offers Accident and Illness Coverage and a variety of add-ons fit for every breed and budget. Visit our quote tool or call us at 866-725-2747 to learn if pet insurance is right for your pup!

jodie otter
Jodie Otter MSW

As an avid fan of all things that meow or bark, Jodie uses her expertise in human and animal health to have a positive impact on the well-being of pets and their owners. Jodie lives in Durham, NC with her cat, "Noodle", and two dogs, "Lilly" and "Clementine".


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