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Home > Dogs > Primal Dog Food Review 2024: Recalls, Pros & Cons

Primal Dog Food Review 2024: Recalls, Pros & Cons

Primal Dog Food - Featured Image

Review Summary

Our Final Verdict

We give Primal dog food a rating of 4.7 out of 5 stars.

If you have been thinking about taking your first steps into the world of raw dog food, Primal pet Foods might just convince you to take the plunge.

It’s known for its quality, healthy raw food formulas. Primal provides plenty of recipes for dogs and cats and manufactures all of its products in the United States. The company is passionate about ensuring everyone’s pets get the best food possible and strive to obtain its ingredients from the most trustworthy sources possible.

This article showcases our favorite picks from Primal’s dog food selection, giving you an overview of what they offer. Could one of these recipes be the perfect fit for your furry friend? Keep reading to find out!

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At a Glance: The Best Primal Dog Food Recipes:

Image Product Details
Our Favorite
Winner
Primal Freeze-Dried Nuggets Lamb Formula Primal Freeze-Dried Nuggets Lamb Formula
  • High protein content
  • First three ingredients are animal-based
  • Organic ingredients
  • Second place
    Primal Freeze-Dried Chicken Nuggets Primal Freeze-Dried Chicken Nuggets
  • High protein content
  • First three ingredients are animal-based
  • Organic ingredients
  • Third place
    Primal Pronto Scoop & Serve Beef Primal Pronto Scoop & Serve Beef
  • First three ingredients are animal-based
  • Organic ingredients
  • Conveniently scoop to feed
  • Primal Pronto Scoop & Serve Duck Primal Pronto Scoop & Serve Duck
  • Made with high-quality protein
  • Contains vitamins A, B-complex, C, and D
  • Finely ground, fresh duck bones for optimum levels of calcium
  • Primal Pronto Scoop & Serve Pork Primal Pronto Scoop & Serve Pork
  • Pork as first ingredient
  • Organic produce
  • Contains good levels of amino and essential fatty acids
  • Primal Dog Food Reviewed

    Overall, Primal’s dog food selection offers several great choices. The company’s background and values show its dedication to quality dog food.

    Who Makes Primal and Where Is It Produced?

    Matt Koss founded Primal in 2001 after he discovered that his beloved dog Luna was sick. She was exhibiting the first signs of renal failure. Matt did everything he could to improve Luna’s health, but nothing was working. His efforts were beginning to look hopeless.

    However, he eventually consulted a holistic veterinarian who suggested a biologically appropriate raw food diet for Luna. After Matt began preparing raw food diets for Luna, her energy, appetite, and happiness improved. From then on, Matt became dedicated to providing the same beneficial foods for other dogs, leading to the creation of Primal.

    Primal Pet Foods products are manufactured in the United States. They have a facility in Fairfield, California, where they pridefully develop their recipes.

    Which Type of Dog Is Primal Best Suited For?

    Any size breed can enjoy a bowl full of Primal’s dog food blends, and so can dogs with specialized dietary needs. Primal offers pet owners the option to customize their formulas for their dogs—but more on that later.

    close up of a dog eating from the bowl
    Image By: Dmytro Zinkevych, Shutterstock

    Which Type of Dog Might Do Better With a Different Brand?

    Although Primal says puppies and senior dogs can enjoy their formulas, they have no specialized options for those age groups.

    If you are looking for something specific for your senior pup, Purina’s Pro Plan Senior Dog Food with Probiotics may be the brand for you. For puppies, try Purina’s Pro Plan Puppy Chicken & Rice Dry Dog Food.

    Discussion of the Primary Ingredients (Good and Bad)

    Primal provides pet owners with a healthier meal than what mainstream dog foods offer. Their goal is to reduce the number of pets suffering from complications related to their diets, so they strive to make meals using only the best ingredients.

    Primal uses high-quality, USDA-grade raw ingredients as well as organic fruits and vegetables to form the foundation of its meals. They also include essential vitamins and organic minerals.

    A notable exclusion in the meals is grain. All of Primal’s recipes are grain-free, which may be troubling to some. Grain-free diets are potentially linked to dilated cardiomyopathy in dogs, a concerning heart condition. This is something to consider before making the switch to Primal, so speak with your vet before making any dietary decisions for your dog.

    french bulldog eating
    Image Credit: Tienuskin, Shutterstock

    Primal Offers Customizable Options

    For pet owners who want a more particular diet for their dogs, or perhaps for dogs who are a little pickier than most, Primal has a useful customization feature for its dog food blends. This allows pet owners to create a more specialized formula that suits their dog’s needs.

    The factors that Primal considers when customizing your dog food recipe include your dog’s age, breed size, activity levels, weight, weight goals, metabolism speeds, diet, and specific health concerns. If your dog struggles with medical issues, Primal’s customization tool can help you create a meal designed to support your furry friend!

    Why Raw Dog Food?

    You may be wondering, what is the deal with raw dog food? If you don’t understand what all the hype is about, we can break it down for you.

    Raw dog food boasts several benefits for dogs. It improves dental health as well as general bone health, and it nourishes the skin and coat. It provides high protein content and eliminates the issues that processed food can carry with it.

    Difficult to Buy in Bulk

    A less than stellar part of Primal’s dog food options is that buying in bulk is difficult. The products come in relatively small packages, and stocking up is not a possibility.

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    A Quick Look at Primal Dog Food

    Pros
    • Packed with health benefits
    • Includes raw, organic, and USDA-grade ingredients
    • Customization options
    Cons
    • Expensive
    • Unable to buy in bulk

    Recall History

    Recall histories can be understandably worrying, and we like to take them into account when reviewing different products. Unfortunately, Primal Pet Foods does have a recall history. They have recalled feline food products in 2011 and 2015 and have also recalled canine products on occasion.

    In 2017, Primal recalled some of its freeze-dried poultry products due to the ground bone content not being properly sized.

    As recent as 2022, Primal issued another recall. They recalled some products from their Raw Frozen Primal Patties for Dogs Beef Formula line out of concern that they may have been contaminated.

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    Reviews of the 3 Best Primal Dog Food Recipes

    Now, we have reached the point where we go over our top picks of Primal’s recipes.

    1. Primal Freeze-Dried Nuggets Lamb Formula

    Primal Lamb Formula Nuggets Grain-Free Raw Freeze-Dried Dog Food

    This recipe is our pick for the best overall option Primal offers. The first three ingredients are lamb hearts, ground lamb bones, and lamb liver packing this formula with healthy protein. The protein content in the recipe is at 34%, ensuring your dog gets plenty of energy to fuel their daily activities.

    The organic vegetables in this recipe provide a boost of healthy nutrition to each meal, supporting the overall health of your dog. This formula requires a little extra preparation from pet owners, making it slightly less convenient than some other options.

    Pros
    • High protein content
    • First three ingredients are animal-based
    • Organic ingredients
    • Maintains healthy weight
    • Supports overall health
    Cons
    • Requires extra preparation before each meal

    2. Primal Freeze-Dried Nuggets Chicken Formula

    Primal Chicken Formula Nuggets Grain-Free Raw Freeze-Dried Dog Food

    The Primal Freeze-Dried Nuggets Chicken Formula is another excellent option from Primal. With chicken and chicken livers as the first two ingredients, this recipe’s protein content is at an astonishing 47%, meaning your dog will be well-equipped with plenty of amino acids, enzymes, and essential fatty acids. The inclusion of organic squash, kale, carrots, and apples serves to balance your dog’s diet and provide them with the quality nutrients they need.

    Like the lamb nugget formula, this option also requires some preparation before your dog can eat it.

    Pros
    • High protein content
    • First three ingredients are animal-based
    • Organic ingredients
    • Maintains healthy weight
    • Supports overall health
    Cons
    • Requires extra preparation before each meal

    3. Primal Pronto Scoop & Serve Beef Formula

    CANINE RAW FROZEN PRONTO BEEF

    For a more convenient option, Primal’s Pronto Scoop & Serve Beef formula is the way to go. It requires little preparation before feeding and still provides your pup with great nutrition. The first three ingredients are beef hearts, beef livers, and ground beef bones, giving your dog plenty of sources of protein. The organic carrots, kale, and squash also provide key nutrients to keep your dog healthy and happy after mealtime.

    Although convenient and nutritious, this recipe has less protein content than the other options listed, which is why we have ranked this one in third place.

    Pros
    • First three ingredients are animal-based
    • Organic ingredients
    • Conveniently scoop to feed
    Cons
    • Lower protein content

    What Other Users Are Saying

    • Chewy– A Chewy customer stated, “This food has made such a difference in my 2 boys. My 11 year old yorkie was overweight and he is so much better now.”
    • My First Shiba – My First Shiba praises Primal Pet Foods, insisting that their products are “a zillion times better than your average dog kibble.”
    • Amazon – As pet owners, we always double-check with Amazon reviews from buyers before we buy something. You can read these by clicking here.

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    Conclusion

    The ingredients in Primal’s dog food blends are of excellent quality, giving this brand a high ranking in our book. However, they have a recall history, and some pet parents may be hesitant to try it.  In spite of the history, Primal has a lot to offer, including several recipe options and customizable formulas. If you are looking for a healthy yet versatile dog food, this brand could be the one for you.

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