If you are vegan or vegetarian, you might want your dog to follow a plant-based diet as well. Dogs can do well on a vegetarian or vegan diet as long as they are getting their nutritional needs met. Choosing high-quality vegan food is important if you want your dog to thrive as a vegetarian! If you are looking for something else, we also have reviews of the best holistic dog foods and the best raw dog foods.
We have looked at dozens of vegan and vegetarian dog foods to bring you some of the best choices out there. We took a look at the ingredients, how people said their dogs liked the food, and the various types available.
Our top pick goes to Halo Vegan Dry Dog Food. This food has a lot of plant-based protein, making it a great substitute for a meat-based diet. It also contains no dairy, corn, wheat, or rice, which is important if you have a dog who is sensitive to these ingredients.
The 5 Top-Rated Vegan Dog Foods
|Best Vegan Dog Food Overall||Halo Vegan Dry Dog Food||4.4|
|Best Protein-Rich Vegan Dog Food||V Dog Vegan Kibble||4.5|
|Best Budget Buy||Wysong Vegan Feline/Canine Formula||3.9|
|Best Dehydrated Vegan Dog Food||Dr. Harvey’s Veg-to-Bowl Dog Food||4.6|
|Best Wet Vegan Dog Food||Natural Balance Ultra Premium Wet Dog Food||4.3|
*Ratings are from Amazon at the time of publication and can change
Best Vegan Dog Food Overall: Halo Vegan Dry Dog Food
Our top spot for the best vegan dog food goes to Halo Vegan Dry Dog Food. It is made with whole, healthy ingredients for the ultimate in nutrition for your dog. It does not use rice, corn, or wheat as filler ingredients; these can provoke reactions in some sensitive or allergic dogs, so if your dog suffers from food allergies or sensitivities, he might do well with this brand.
The vegetables used in this dog food are non-GMO; they are sourced from growers who do not use genetically modified seeds at all. The carbohydrates used (mainly peas and chickpeas) have low glycemic indices, so if your dog has diabetes or other health issues, talk to your vet about whether this is an appropriate food to feed him.
The company offers a 14-day money-back guarantee. They recommend taking two weeks to transition your dog fully to a new diet, so if it isn’t working out well, you can get your money back.
Halo Vegan Dry Dog Food Key Features:
- Completely vegan dog food
- Uses peas and chickpeas as carbohydrate and plant protein sources
- Does not contain rice, wheat, corn, or dairy products
- Good for dogs with allergies
- 14-day money-back guarantee
Best Protein-Rich Vegan Dog Food: V-Dog Vegan Kibble
After protein-rich vegan dog food? V-Dog Vegan Kibble is a fantastic choice, not least because it has 1000+ rave reviews. Not only does this California-made kibble boast a whopping 24% protein, but it is also is formulated to meet all guidelines for AAFCO adult dog nutrition. Plus, it is a top pick for dogs with allergies, as its free of corn, soy, and wheat.
It also contains plenty of amino acids, vitamins, and minerals. If you’re still unsure if this food is the right choice for your pooch, take a read of the reviews. Most dog owners who tried it out with their dogs absolutely love it. Many said that their dogs became much healthier after making the switch to V-Dog Vegan Kibble.
V-Dog Vegan Kibble Key Features:
- Free of corn, soy, and wheat
- Made in California
- Meets all AAFCO adult dog food nutrition guidelines
- Good for all breeds
- Grain-free, good for puppies with allergies
Best Budget Vegan Dog Food: Wysong Vegan Feline/Canine Formula
If you are looking for vegan dog food on a budget, our recommendation goes to Wysong Vegan Feline/Canine Formula. One nice feature about this food is that it can be used for both dogs and cats. It contains taurine, which is essential in a cat’s diet, as well as all of the other nutrients necessary for your canine and feline friends.
The main ingredients are brown rice and corn. There is also plant protein from peas and soybeans. It doesn’t contain any non-nutritive fillers. It contains flaxseed to provide omega-3 fatty acids, which are important to the health of your pet. If you do feed it to your cats, it’s recommended that you add meat or fish to their diet, as cats are obligate carnivores. It can stand alone as a diet for dogs, however.
Wysong Vegan Feline/Canine Formula Key Features:
- Contains taurine
- Can be used for cats and dogs
- Protein is from brown rice, corn, peas, and soybeans
- Contains flaxseed
- Contains no fillers
Best Dehydrated Vegan Dog Food: Dr. Harvey’s Veg-to-Bowl Dog Food
If you prefer a dehydrated vegan dog food base so that you can add your own liquid and protein, you’ll want to try Dr. Harvey’s Veg-to-Bowl Dog Food. This is a low-calorie base for homemade meals, and it’s great if your dog is a bit overweight (though you should talk to your veterinarian about your dog’s nutritional needs if he needs to lose weight). A 5-lb bag reconstitutes to make 46 lbs worth of meals.
This pre-mix contains no grains, just GMO-free vegetables, and herbs. The foods are minimally processed. All you need to do is add protein and oil to make a balanced meal for your dog. This is particularly good for dogs with allergies or who have digestive issues such as constipation, diarrhea, or excessive gas. It can also be a good choice for dogs with kidney problems (again, talk to your veterinarian).
Dr. Harvey’s Veg-to-Bowl Dog Food Key Features:
- Dehydrated meal base
- Just add oil and protein
- Can be used with meat or other proteins
- Contains no grains
- Certified non-GMO
- Good for dogs with certain health issues
Best Wet Vegan Dog Food: Natural Balance Ultra Premium Wet Dog Food
Natural Balance Ultra Premium Wet Dog Food is our favorite wet vegan dog food. This is a case of 12 cans that hold 13 ounces each. It contains all of the same essential nutrients as their foods with meat, but the protein comes from brown rice, cracked barley, oatmeal, peas, and carrots. It also contains potatoes, which are highly digestible. This is a true vegan formula with no animal products at all.
Natural Balance foods are evaluated with nine safety tests to ensure that your dog is receiving a safe and nutritious product. This formula also has omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids to improve your dog’s skin and contribute to a glossy coat.
Natural Balance Ultra Premium Wet Dog Food Key Features:
- Case of 12 cans
- Contains brown rice, barley, oatmeal, peas, carrots, and potatoes
- Contains fatty acids for skin and coat health
Who Should Buy Vegan or Vegetarian Dog Food
If you are vegan or vegetarian and it is important to you that your dog also eats in this way, you might consider switching him over to a vegan or vegetarian diet. It is important to let your veterinarian know first so you can supplement with any vitamins or nutrients that are not part of the food that you choose. This is particularly important if your dog has any health problems, is pregnant or lactating, or if you have a young puppy or an elderly dog who might need additional nutritional support.
Another reason to consider a vegan or vegetarian food is if your dog has allergies. Some dogs cannot tolerate certain forms of protein, and some can’t handle grains. Some vegan foods contain no grains, which could be appropriate for a dog with grain or undetermined allergies.
Important Features to Consider
There are a few things to keep in mind as you choose the best vegan dog food for your furry friend. Here are some features to consider.
- Wet or dry food. Some dogs will only eat one type of food over another, and others like when wet and dry food are mixed. Financially speaking, dry food is usually less expensive than wet food. If your dog has dental problems or tends to become dehydrated from not drinking enough water, then wet food might be a better choice.
- Ingredients. While all vegan foods will avoid animal products, some might contain other ingredients that your dog is sensitive to or allergic to. For example, if your furry friend can’t digest certain grains, you’ll want to be sure that they are not included in the formula or brand you choose.
- Flavor. Dogs all have individual preferences, and some will eat only certain flavors of food. If yours has been accustomed to eating beef, turkey, or other animal proteins, you might need to experiment with various vegetarian flavors to find one that he likes just as much.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is vegan dog food?
Vegan dog food is food that contains no animal products. This means that in addition to not containing meat, it also won’t contain gelatin (usually sourced from pork bones), eggs, or dairy products. Vegetarian dog food will not contain meat but it might contain other animal products such as dairy or eggs.
Is vegan pet food healthy?
Vegan dog food can be healthy if you are careful to ensure that all of your dog’s nutritional needs are being met. This begins with a talk with your veterinarian. Commercial vegan dog foods generally contain what dogs need for good health, but every dog is an individual and some will need additional supplementation. A dog can be very healthy and thrive on a vegan diet as long as they are getting all of the nutrition they need, including the right amount of protein.
Vegan cat food is not an appropriate choice for a cat, however. Cats are obligate carnivores and require meat in their diets for good health.
Do vegan dogs live longer?
While there don’t seem to be any studies that have determined that vegan dogs live longer than average, there are a lot of anecdotes about dogs who have overcome health issues by eating a vegan diet. The right diet for your dog is the one that keeps him at a healthy weight and gives him plenty of energy.
Can a dog live without meat?
Yes, dogs can live without meat in their diets as long as they are getting all of their nutritional needs met. One potential drawback of a vegan or vegetarian diet for dogs is that they might not get the protein that they need. As long as they are getting protein from sources other than meat, however, dogs can live a full and active life without eating animal products.