Does your pooch like the best of the best? Or maybe he needs a change of kibble because he has a sensitive stomach or is allergic to the other commonly used proteins? Duck dog food is fantastic for pups with sensitive stomachs. It’s tasty, full of nutrition, and it is known to be gentle on a dog’s digestive system.
With so many products out there claiming to be the next best thing, where exactly do you start? Well, you can start here, and we have done all the hard work for you. We have spent hours and hours researching what makes duck foods stand out from the crowd. We will walk you through exactly how to pick one for your pooch and his needs.
In this guide, we are going to walk you through everything you need to know about the best duck dog foods on the market. We have chosen our favorite duck kibbles and provided in-depth reviews. You’ll find out exactly why they have made it onto our list and which dogs they are suited too. So whatever your pooch’s needs, or whatever your budget, we have a duck food here for everyone. So, let’s get quacking!
At a Glance: Our Favorite Duck Dog Foods
American Journey Duck Formula
Canidae Pure Grain-free
Merrick Duck Dog Food
Note: Clicking the above links will take you to Chewy.com, where you can get additional product information and customer reviews. If you make a purchase, we earn a commission at no additional cost to you.
Nutritional Benefits of Duck
Many people associate duck with being a very fatty meat, but it is only the skin that is fatty. The fat doesn’t penetrate the flesh. This means the meat underneath the layer of fat and skin is very lean and nutritious.
From the table below, you can see just how nutritious 100g of cooked skinless duck is. It has the lowest content of both fat and calories when compared to other common proteins. This is why duck is often used in limited ingredient formulas. It’s easier for his digestive system to break down. It can make a great protein for a porky pup who needs to shed a few pounds because it is lean.
Duck is also surprisingly higher in iron than beef is. Iron is an essential mineral that helps to transport oxygen around the body. Without it, your pooch will become lethargic and weak. So duck helps to top up his iron stores and keep him full of energy.
Vitamin B12 is a crucial vitamin for the health of his nerve and blood cells. It is similar to iron in that it keeps you healthy and feeling active. Although duck isn’t as high in this compared to beef or salmon, it has almost triple the amount when compared to chicken.
If that wasn’t enough, duck is a rich dark meat that is full of intense flavor that most dogs go crazy for. It is an excellent choice for fussy Fidos or pampered pooches. So, if you can’t entice him with boring beef or monotonous chicken, then duck might be his Achilles heel.
Duck Dog Food vs. Duck Inclusive Food
Some duck dog food recipes use duck as the only protein source, whereas some recipes use duck amongst other meat proteins. Some recipes use a variety of other woodland proteins such as quail and rabbit. And other recipes use similarly gentle meats such as lamb.
If you are choosing duck because your pooch is just plain fussy, feeding him a duck-based food is absolutely fine. In fact, it can be beneficial to add other proteins into the mix because they can offer a variety of other nutrients that duck might not be high in. A well-balanced diet is always the best way to go.
If you are choosing a duck recipe because your pooch is allergic to other meat proteins it is essential to select a duck only food. Or at least a recipe that doesn’t list the meat protein that he is allergic to. While this might sound obvious, it’s better to be safe than sorry!
It is worth noting that some recipes state that they are chicken free. However, they still list chicken fat in the ingredients list. Chicken fat does not contain the same allergens that the chicken meat contains. Therefore, if he is allergic to chicken, he maybe ok eating chicken fat. Not all dogs are the same, so you should always consult your veterinarian before feeding him a recipe with it in just to be safe.
Ingredients are listed in the descending order of weight. So, you should always look at the first five ingredients at the very least. Unfortunately, many brands mislabel foods, and they can label it as a duck recipe even if duck is the smallest ingredient in the list. Thankfully, most premium brands are honest. But if you are seeking a duck recipe, it should ideally be the first ingredient, or at least within the first five ingredients.
Duck Dog Food Reviews
So now you know about duck and its nutritional value, and whether you should choose a duck only kibble or duck-based formula. Once you have your logic for picking a duck based dog food, you just need to consider your budget, dog size, and feeding schedule. After considering everything, below are the kibbles that have made it into our top 6 picks.
American Journey Limited Ingredient
- Limited ingredient recipe.
- Single protein source.
- Grain-free recipe.
- Easily digestible carbohydrates.
- Omega fatty acids for skin and coat health.
- 350 Calories per cup.
- 25% Protein, 12% Fat, 6% Fiber.
This recipe is a duck only recipe and lists deboned duck and duck meal as the first two ingredients. It is a limited ingredient recipe, which is great for those pooches with a sensitive digestive system. It is a grain-free recipe that uses sweet potatoes and peas to provide easy to digest healthy carbohydrates and fiber.
Omega 3 and 6 fatty acids are supplied thanks to flaxseed, sunflower oil, and fish oil, which all help to nourish his skin and coat. It will also improve cognitive function as well as his overall wellbeing. It contains added vitamins and minerals to keep his immune system fighting fit. This is our favorite option for those parents on a tighter budget who do not want to skimp on top-quality ingredients.
We love that this recipe has the highest fiber content and lowest-calorie count. It makes it an excellent option for those duck lovers who need to lose a few pounds. American journey is one of our favorite brands, as they do a good job balancing cost and high-quality ingredients.
Zignature Duck Dog Food
- Grain-free formula.
- Made with duck as the first ingredient.
- Omega fatty acids for skin and coat health.
- Free of most canine allergens.
- Low glycemic carbs.
- 425 Calories per cup.
- 30% Protein, 15% Fat, 4.5% Fiber.
This is <a duck only recipe that offers a 30% protein content, which is plenty of protein for most dogs. It is made with duck from western France, and duck meal and flaxseed provide omega fatty acids for his skin and coat. It lists a variety of added vitamins and minerals for his overall health, as well as DHA for optimum brain function.
This is a limited ingredient formula, and it steers clear of sometimes troublesome ingredients. The ingredients that they do not use are chicken, corn, wheat, soy, and potato, making it a hypoallergenic and low-glycemic option. Instead, they use chickpeas and peas that provide him with extra energy and fibrous nutrients.
We love that this recipe is made only with duck, and it is entirely chicken free. Making it an excellent choice for those dogs allergic to the most commonly used meat source.
Wellness Simple Duck & Oatmeal
- Limited ingredient food.
- High-quality duck is first ingredient.
- Probiotics for gut health.
- Perfect for dogs with sensitive stomachs.
- 450 Calories per cup.
- 21% Protein, 11% Fat, 4.75% Fiber.
This is a duck only recipe, and duck is the first, and only meat protein ingredient listed. This formula offers a low protein option, which is sometimes beneficial for those dogs with sensitive stomachs or who find protein a bit too rich.
This is not always the best option, especially for dogs who are used to higher protein diets or energetic dogs who need extra muscle maintenance power. Flaxseed, canola oil, biotin, and folic acid contribute towards a healthy and shiny coat.
It lists gentle oatmeal as the second ingredient, as well as peas and ground rice for energy and fiber. This formula is focused on being an easy to digest recipe. It lists probiotic ingredients such as lactobacillus acidophilus, which help to promote friendly bacteria in his gut. Wellness makes many great lines of dog food, and their formula is no different.
We love that this recipe is the only grain inclusive option. Some dogs do much better on a grain-based diet, and some owners prefer a grain inclusive food, so this pick is for grain-inclusive dogs.
Canidae Pure Real Duck Formula
- Made with 8 simple food ingredients.
- Grain-free formula.
- Probiotics for gut health.
- No artificial colors, or preservatives.
- Made in the United States.
- 520 Calories per cup.
- 32% Protein, 16% Fat, 4% Fiber.
This is a duck-based recipe with turkey meal and chicken fat. Canidae makes this with only 8 key ingredients. It makes this an excellent option for dogs who need a diet with essentials only. It is also a good option for those owners who wish to feed their pup a variety of protein sources. Included is turkey, an exceptionally lean meat.
It is a grain-free recipe, and the other main ingredients are sweet potatoes, peas, potatoes, and sun-cured alfalfa. After the cooking process, this kibble is fortified with their HealthPLUS blend that is made with a select blend of prebiotics, probiotics, and omega fatty acids for his overall health. It lists a variety of vitamin and mineral supplements too.
We lovethat this recipe has the highest calorie count of any on this list. Canidae makes excellent food, and this formula is a great option for dogs who need a limited ingredient option without scrimping on the energy.
Holistic Health Duck Meal Recipe
- Includes antioxidants for immune health.
- Rich in Omega fats for coat and skin health.
- Duck meal is primary ingredient.
- Contains pumpkin and fiber for digestion.
- Includes digestive enzymes for gut health.
- 441 Calories per cup.
- 29% Protein, 14% Fat, 5% Fiber.
This is a duck only recipe with chicken fat. This recipe lists duck meal as the first ingredient. Meat meals are highly concentrated in protein, sometimes up to 300%. So duck meal is a fantastic protein source. This formula uses chicken fat, and although this usually doesn’t cause issues for dogs with chicken allergies always be sure to ask your vet first.
This is also a grain-free recipe that uses chickpeas, peas, and lentils. The recipe uses those ingredients to provide energy and easy to digest carbohydrate ingredients. This recipe also lists a variety of prebiotic and probiotic ingredients. It includes live yogurt cultures and digestive enzymes for increased gut support.
There are also a wide variety of superfoods and exotic fruits in this recipe. These ingredients provide Fido with immunity-boosting properties, such as pumpkin, cranberries, apples, papaya, blueberries, and pomegranate.
We love that this recipe is made with duck meal as the first ingredient, which is full of concentrated duck protein and omega fatty acids for his overall health.
Merrick Duck & Sweet Potato Recipe
- Deboned duck is the first ingredient.
- Grain-free recipe.
- Glucosamine boost for joint health.
- Made in the Untied States.
- 392 Calories per cup.
- 38% Protein, 17% Fat, 3.5% Fiber.
This is a duck-based recipe, with chicken meal, turkey meal, chicken fat, salmon meal, and deboned chicken also listed in the ingredients. This recipe has made our list of top picks because some owners like to feed their pooch with a variety of meat proteins.
This recipe does just that. This also means that the protein content is very high. Many dogs love the extra meaty taste and need the extra amino acid intake.
This formula also has exceptionally high levels of glucosamine and chondroitin, which are essential ingredients for joint support. This is ideal for older dogs or those who are carrying a lot of weight. It is grain-free, and wholesome veggies such as sweet potato and peas keep him feeling full and energized.
We love that this recipe has the highest protein content, which is excellent for those energetic or larger dogs with a lot of muscle mass. Or those pooches who prefer a meatier kibble.
Overall, the most important thing to consider when buying a duck food is to ask yourself, why am I feeding my pooch a duck recipe. If it is because you think he will go nuts for this richly flavorful meat, then there isn’t an issue buying a duck-based recipe.
If you are choosing it because he has a super sensitive digestive system or is allergic to other proteins, then you must always look at the ingredients list yourself. Never rely on claims made by the brand without checking it out yourself.
Overall, duck is a lean and nutritious meat that your pooch will love. As long as it is a high-quality kibble that provides a well-balanced diet, Fido will undoubtedly love it. Choose from our top recommendations above, and both you and your pooch will be thrilled with your new duck choice.