Salmon is a popular choice for dog owners looking for a novel protein source for their pet.
If your pup has a food allergy or intolerance to a common source of protein used in dog food, such as chicken, beef or lamb, switching to salmon dog food can help clear up skin irritations and digestive problems. To combat skin and digestive sensitivities, many salmon dog foods are also grain-free or part of a limited-ingredient diet.
Of course, salmon is also rich in important nutrients for your furry friend. Not only is it an easily digestible source of high-quality protein, but it also provides omega-3 fatty acids that help strengthen the immune system and promote a healthy coat.
Even better, many dogs simply love the flavor of salmon.
We’ve compared a host of dog foods that use salmon as the main ingredient to choose five of the best available options. We considered the following factors:
- The first five ingredients in each food
- The nutritional analysis of each food (protein content, fat content, fiber content, etc.)
- Pack sizes available
- The price of each food
- Real customer reviews
1. Taste of the Wild Pacific Stream Grain-Free Dry Food
Taste of the Wild Pacific Stream Canine Grain-Free Recipe with Smoked Salmon
First five ingredients: Salmon, Ocean Fish Meal, Sweet Potatoes, Potatoes, Peas | Crude protein: 25% minimum | Crude fat: 15% minimum | Crude fiber: 3% maximum | Pack sizes available: 5lb, 14lb, 28lb
Made using sustainably sourced salmon, this Pacific Stream Canine Recipe from Taste of the Wild provides high-quality protein and omega fatty acids for your dog. Salmon and ocean fish meal top the ingredients list, while peas and sweet potatoes are included as a source of energy.
Dried chicory root in this recipe acts as a prebiotic to nourish the good bacteria in your pup’s gut, and the manufacturer’s proprietary probiotics are added after the cooking process to help promote healthy digestion. Pacific Stream Canine Recipe is also made in the USA and doesn’t feature any eggs, grains, or artificial colors, flavors, or preservatives.
- Made in the USA
- No fillers and no artificial colors, flavors or preservatives
- Affordably priced
- Sustainably sourced salmon
- Good source of highly digestible energy
- Some reviewers claim their picky eater dog wouldn’t touch this food
2. Nutro Limited Ingredient Salmon & Lentils Recipe
Nutro Limited Ingredient Diet Grain-Free Adult Salmon & Lentils Recipe Dry Dog Food
First five ingredients: Salmon, Salmon Meal, Dried Potatoes, Lentils, Chickpeas | Crude protein: 22% minimum | Crude fat: 14% minimum | Crude fiber: 3.5% maximum | Pack sizes available: 4lb, 22lb
As a limited-ingredient diet, this Salmon & Lentils recipe from Nutro is designed specifically to suit dogs with food intolerances. Salmon and salmon meal are the first two ingredients listed, while there’s no chicken, beef or dairy protein found in the product.
There’s also no corn, wheat or soy, and no artificial colors, flavors, or preservatives. What Nutro Limited Ingredient Adult Salmon & Lentils Recipe does offer is nutrients designed to nourish a healthy coat, and amino acids that support a healthy metabolism.
- Never more than 10 ingredients
- Helps build muscle and supports a healthy metabolism
- Made in the USA with non-GMO ingredients
- Good source of omega fatty acids
- Quite pricey
3. Merrick Grain Free With Salmon & Sweet Potato
Merrick Grain-Free Real Salmon & Sweet Potato Recipe Dry Food
First five ingredients: Deboned Salmon, Salmon Meal, Peas, Sweet Potatoes, Potatoes | Crude protein: 34% minimum | Crude fat: 14% minimum | Crude fiber: 4.5% maximum | Pack sizes available: 4lb, 10lb, 22lb
With deboned salmon and salmon meal as its first two ingredients, Merrick Grain-Free Salmon & Sweet Potato Recipe is another popular choice for salmon dog food buyers. It features real fruits and vegetables like blueberries, apple and peas, and provides omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids to maintain skin and coat health.
For dogs suffering from stiff and sore joints, glucosamine and chondroitin are included to help support mobility. And because it doesn’t feature any poultry or any artificial colors, flavors or preservatives, it’s a good choice for dogs with food sensitivities.
- Features real fruits and veggies
- Features glucosamine and chondroitin for joint health and mobility
- High in protein
- Made in the USA
4. Blue Buffalo Wilderness Salmon Dry Dog Food
Blue Buffalo Wilderness Salmon Recipe Grain-Free Dry Dog Food
First five ingredients: Deboned Salmon, Chicken Meal, Peas, Pea Protein, Menhaden Fish Meal | Crude protein: 34% minimum | Crude fat: 15% minimum | Crude fiber: 6% maximum | Pack sizes available: 4.5lb, 11lb, 20lb, 24lb
Designed to satisfy your dog’s instinctual cravings, this protein-rich food features deboned salmon and chicken meal as its two main ingredients. Blue Buffalo Wilderness Salmon Recipe is available in 4.5lb, 11lb, 20lb and 24lb bags.
This grain-free formula features a blend of antioxidants, vitamins and minerals to help support your dog’s immune system and general health, plus it’s high in protein to help build and maintain muscle.
This food also doesn’t feature any fillers or any artificial flavors or preservatives.
- Contains omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids
- Good range of bag sizes
- High in protein
- High in fiber
- Also contains chicken meal
5. CANIDAE PURE Sea Salmon & Sweet Potato Recipe
CANIDAE Grain-Free PURE Real Salmon & Sweet Potato Recipe Dry Dog Food
First five ingredients: Salmon, Salmon Meal, Menhaden Fish Meal, Sweet Potatoes, Peas | Crude protein: 32% minimum | Crude fat: 18% minimum | Crude fiber: 4% maximum | Pack sizes available: 4lb, 12lb, 24lb
Featuring fresh salmon, salmon meal and menhaden fish meal as its three main ingredients, CANIDAE PURE Real Salmon & Sweet Potato Recipe is a salmon dog food for adult dogs. The manufacturer claims that this dog food features just eight real-food ingredients (plus natural flavor, taurine, minerals, vitamins and prebiotics), so it’s a great choice for owners looking to protect their dog against food allergies and intolerances.
Canidae’s HealthPLUS blend of probiotics are added after cooking to ensure good digestive health, while the food is also a rich source of omega fatty acids to promote skin and coat health. This Real Salmon & Sweet Potato Recipe also doesn’t include any soy, wheat, corn or fillers and is made in the USA.
- Limited eight real-food ingredients
- Grain-free with no soy, wheat, corn or fillers
- Supports joint health
- Some customers report that their dog doesn’t like the taste
What is limited-ingredient dog food?
Designed to prevent food allergies and intolerances, limited-ingredient foods contain fewer ingredients than ordinary dog food. They usually feature only one novel protein source and one source of carbohydrates to reduce the chances of your dog having an allergic reaction or developing an intolerance to something in his diet.
Can I feed my dog raw salmon?
No, you should never give your pup raw salmon. If the salmon is infected with the Neorickettsia helminthoeca parasite, this can cause salmon poisoning disease (SPD).
Can I feed my dog cooked salmon?
Yes you can, provided the salmon is well-cooked. You’ll also need to make sure there are no bones in the fillet you feed, and you must never cook it with any oils or seasoning.
As the name suggests, salmon dog food is food that uses salmon as its main ingredient. You can tell if a food contains salmon not only by reading the front of the label, but also by looking at the ingredients panel on the back or side of the pack. Ingredients are listed in order by weight, so look for a food that features salmon as the first ingredient.
Will salmon dog food contain any other protein sources?
In some cases, yes. While some foods will contain salmon as their only protein source, other formulas may also include chicken, beef and other protein sources. If you’re switching to a dog food made with salmon because your dog is allergic to a specific protein, be sure to check the ingredients panel closely before you buy.