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Gentle Giants Dog Food Review 2023 – Pros, Cons, Recalls & FAQ

Review Summary

Our Final Verdict

We give Gentle Giants dog food 4.5 out of 5 Stars.

What do Robin, the Boy Wonder, and Gentle Giants dog food have in common? Burt Ward, the actor who portrayed Robin in the Batman TV show in the 1960s, is the founder of the highly rated dog food company! Mr. Ward and his wife, Tracy, started Gentle Giants dog food in 2009 with the intent of helping dogs live longer, healthier lives through better nutrition. The Ward family also runs Gentle Giants Rescue and has helped thousands of dogs and other animals.

Based on the ingredients in Gentle Giants dog food and the Wards’ incredibly long-lived dogs, the Wards have been quite successful. Their dry and canned dog foods are all-natural, with no artificial colors or preservatives. Gentle Giants is also corn, wheat, soy, and gluten-free and uses non-GMO ingredients. Their dog foods are also significantly lower in fat, contain a wide variety of vitamins and minerals, and have no fillers to speak of. In the following review, we’ll discuss Gentle Giants dog food.

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At a Glance: The Best Gentle Giants Dog Food Recipes

Image Product Details
Our Favorite
Winner
Gentle Giants Non-GMO Chicken Gentle Giants Non-GMO Chicken
  • High-quality meat is the first ingredient
  • No preservatives, fillers, GMOs, gluten, soy, corn, or wheat
  • Contains a variety of excellent protein sources
  • Second place
    Gentle Giants Beef Grain-Free Dog Food Gentle Giants Beef Grain-Free Dog Food
  • Made with 90% beef
  • Aids in joint support
  • Contains pumpkin, apples and sweet potatoes
  • Third place
    Gentle Giants Non-GMO Salmon Gentle Giants Non-GMO Salmon
  • High-quality fish is the first ingredient
  • Contains salmon oil for chondroitin and glucosamine
  • Made with 16 fruits and vegetables
  • Gentle Giants Non-GMO Beef & Bacon Gentle Giants Non-GMO Beef & Bacon
  • Free from poultry
  • Contains prebiotics and probiotics
  • Support joint health and mobility
  • Gentle Giants Chicken Grain-Free Dog Food Gentle Giants Chicken Grain-Free Dog Food
  • Made with 90% chicken
  • Natural source of omega fatty acids
  • Good for sensitive stomachs
  • Gentle Giants Dog Food Reviewed

    One of the misconceptions about the Gentle Giants dog food brand is that it’s made for larger dogs, but that is untrue. The reason it’s called “Gentle Giants” is it’s named after the founder’s Gentle Giants Rescue in California. Gentle Giants dog food is made for all dog breeds and life stages. The mission behind the brand, according to founders Burt and Tracy Ward, is to provide a higher quality of life for dogs and, in doing so, extend their life as well. The company claims dogs that eat Gentle Giants dog food live longer because they are so healthy.

    Gentle Giants Canine Nutrition Chicken Dry Dog Food

    Who makes Gentle Giants, and where is it produced?

    Consumers Supply Distributing in Sioux City, Iowa, manufactures Gentle Giants dog food. All of the ingredients in Gentle Giants recipes are sourced in the United States. All of the Gentle Giants dog food recipes are low in fat, high in protein, and have a moderate amount of carbohydrates. The brand’s product line is relatively small, consisting of only seven recipes as of this writing. They include three dry foods and four wet recipes with various protein sources.

    Which type of dog is Gentle Giants best suited for?

    Although the name would suggest otherwise, Gentle Giants dog food is meant for all dog breeds at all stages of life. The company claims its meals are suitable for puppies as young as 3.5 weeks old and seniors.

    Senior and young adult dogs enjoying fresh air
    Image Credit: Anna Hoychuk, Shutterstock

    Which type of dog might do better with a different brand?

    Gentle Giants was developed to extend a dog’s life by reducing fat and carbohydrate intake and providing sufficient protein without overdoing it. For this reason, if you have a high-energy dog or a working dog, you might want to give them dog food with more fat and carbs to provide more energy for their highly active lifestyle. Also, while Gentle Giants is made from healthy ingredients and free from grains, gluten, corn, wheat, and soy, a dog that suffers from allergies or other health problems may need specialized dog food. However, the company claims its food can help unhealthy dogs become healthy again. For that reason, you may wish to try Gentle Giants and see if it helps your canine companion.

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    What Are the Primary Ingredients in Gentle Giants Dog Food?

    What’s notable about the Gentle Giants brand is that their recipes are very simple and use a quality protein source in each recipe. Here’s a look at the primary ingredients the company uses in our favorite of its dog food recipes, Gentle Giants Canine Nutrition Chicken Dry Dog Food:

    • Chicken Meal: An excellent source of protein that contains roughly 300% more than plain chicken.
    • Barley: This starchy carbohydrate provides much-needed fiber and several vitamins. Nutritionally, however, its value is moderate.
    • Brown Rice: A complex carb that, after cooking, provides energy. Like barley, however, its nutritional value is only moderate.
    • Oatmeal: This whole grain is gluten-free and high in fiber and B-vitamins.
    • Peas: A good fiber source with carbs and protein.
    • Chicken Fat: Surprisingly, chicken fat is a quality ingredient that’s high in omega-6 fatty linoleic acid.
    • Natural Poultry Flavor: It’s problematic since 80 to 90% of ”natural” flavors are preservatives.
    • Flaxseed: An excellent source of omega-g fatty acids, fiber, and protein.
    • Menhaden Fish Meal: A protein-rich concentrate made from clean, dried small fish that’s also a good source of amino acids.

    The remaining ingredients are in such small amounts as to have very little effect on a dog’s overall health. Some notable ingredients include dried yeast, chicory, taurine, and chelated minerals, most of which are found in high-quality dog foods.

    Low-Fat Meals

    Overall, the Gentle Giants recipes are about 25% protein from various sources and 10% fat, giving them a fat-to-protein ratio of 41%. That’s very close to the average protein content of most quality dog foods while being below average in fat. Gentle Giants makes a concerted effort to provide low-fat dog foods.

    Carbohydrates

    Gentle Giants dog food contains about 58% carbohydrates, which is middle-of-the-road compared to other brands. Dog food carb content varies from a low of 46% to a high of 74%. When you consider that, in the wild, a dog would eat about 14% carbs, all dog foods, including Gentle Giants, are far too high in carbs for the typical dog. However, veterinarians say that an adult dog can consume a diet made up of 50% carbs.

    Dried Yeast

    Dried yeast has been linked to allergies in some dogs but won’t cause a problem for most. A small but vocal minority of dog experts believe that dried yeast can lead to bloat, which is a life-threatening ailment. There is very little scientific evidence to back up this belief, however.

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    A Quick Look at Gentle Giants Dog Food

    Pros
    • The first ingredient in all recipes is protein
    • Made for dogs of all breeds and stages of life
    • Recipes created by nutritionists and veterinarians
    • Contains no artificial ingredients
    • Contains no corn, wheat, or soy
    • Non-GMO
    • Gluten-free
    • Low in fat
    • Affordably priced
    Cons
    • The product line is very small (only seven products)
    • High in carbohydrates
    • No specialized recipes
    • Little information about the manufacturing process

    Recall History

    As of this writing, there have been no recalls of the Gentle Giants dog food brand or any of their products. That’s an excellent record and a good sign for all pet parents that Gentle Giants produces a quality product. Considering the company was founded in 2009, it’s even more impressive.

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    Reviews of the 3 Best Gentle Giants Dog Food Recipes

    Below are the three top Gentle Giants recipes and a closer look at their nutritional contents.

    1. Gentle Giants Canine Nutrition Chicken Dry Dog Food

    Gentle Giants Canine Nutrition Chicken Dry Dog Food

    Gentle Giants dry chicken recipe is complete and balanced dog food for all breeds at all stages of life. It contains 22% crude protein and 9% crude fat, which are both excellent and healthy percentages. The first ingredient is chicken meal, a good source of protein, followed by pearled barley, brown rice, oatmeal, and peas.

    Several vegetables are also included to add vitamins, antioxidants, and minerals. They include carrots, sweet potatoes, pumpkin, cranberries, blueberries, and apples.

    Pros
    • High-quality meat is the first ingredient
    • No preservatives, fillers, GMOs, gluten, soy, corn, or wheat
    • Contains a variety of excellent protein sources
    • Made for all breeds and ages of dog
    • Affordable
    Cons
    • Not grain-free
    • Fewer healthy meats than other brands

    2. Gentle Giants Beef Grain-Free Wet Dog Food

    Gentle Giants 90% Beef Grain-Free Wet Dog Food

    Like the other Gentle Giants recipes, their 90% Beef Grain-Free product is complete and balanced. It’s made from 90% beef and, and beef is the first ingredient, along with beef broth. Interestingly, this recipe is only 10% crude protein, even though it’s 90% beef. It’s low in fat, with only 7% crude fat. This recipe has seven fruits and veggies, adding a high amount of vitamins and antioxidants.

    One ingredient of note in this recipe is dried green-lipped mussels. You shouldn’t overlook the benefit of this seemingly odd ingredient because it provides chondroitin and glucosamine. Both are excellent for your dog’s bones and joints. Like the other Gentle Giants recipes, this one is for all dog breeds and ages.

    Pros
    • Grain-free
    • Very low in fat
    • Beef and beef broth are the first two ingredients
    • Contains no preservatives, fillers, or GMOs
    • Uses a large variety of fruits and vegetables
    • Made for all breeds and ages of dog
    • Excellent for bones and joints
    Cons
    • Low in protein
    • Reports that some dogs don’t like the flavor

    3. Gentle Giants Canine Nutrition Salmon Dry Dog Food

    Gentle giants salmon

     

    The main draw of this recipe is that the first ingredient is salmon meal, an excellent protein source that contains omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids. Like the other recipes from Gentle Giants, it includes a vast variety of veggies and fruits, considerably upping the vitamin and mineral content.

    This recipe’s 5th ingredient is salmon oil, which is high in the omega-3 fatty acids DHA and EPA. These have been proven to reduce inflammation, improve heart and brain health, and help your dog’s weight management. The crude protein content is an impressive 24%, with crude fat listed as 10%. It also has a higher fiber content than some of the brand’s other recipes at 5% crude fiber.

    Pros
    • High-quality fish is the first ingredient
    • Contains salmon oil for chondroitin and glucosamine
    • Made with 16 fruits and vegetables
    • Non-GMO and no fillers
    • Pre and probiotics are added to improve digestion
    • Loaded with vitamins and minerals
    • Complete and balanced for all dog breeds and life stages
    • Grain-free
    Cons
    • The 2nd ingredient is dried potatoes, a possible diabetes cause
    • Might be too much protein for some dogs

    What Other Users Are Saying About Gentle Giants Dog Food

    • AZ Animals – “One of the main differences we’ve noticed with this food and others we’ve tested is that dogs eat less and are better satiated with Gentle Giants recipes. This is a clear indication of quality over quantity.”
    • Pet Food Reviewer – “We don’t believe that any particular ingredient present is low-quality or a filler.”
    • Dog Food Advisor – “Highly Recommended”
    • Amazon – Amazon is one of the best sources for real reviews from real users, and we make a point of checking with them before buying any pet food product.

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    Final Thoughts About Gentle Giants

    Holy outstanding dog food, Batman! Gentle Giants, founded by none other than Burt Ward, is a high-quality kibble! All hyperbole aside, we were impressed with this brand. It’s made with high-quality protein, low in fat, free of preservatives, and loaded with vitamins and minerals. Although there are only seven dog food products in their line, those seven are exceptional, with few drawbacks. Their recipes feature an impressive variety of fruits and vegetables and are all perfectly balanced. More impressive is that their recipes are for every breed and life stage. One slight drawback is that Gentle Giants doesn’t offer any recipes for special needs dogs, but overall, they produce a fine product that we can recommend highly. Gentle Giants might not turn your dog into a superhero, but the food might help your dog live a long time.

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