Feeding our dogs the right food is crucial to their development. Of course, we want them to be as healthy as possible.
But it can be difficult to choose which dog food to buy, especially since there’s an abundance of brands you can choose from.
So today, we’re going to give you a side-by-side comparison of two of the most popular brands – Taste of the Wild VS Merrick.
Criteria for Choosing Dog Food
Taste of the Wild is a private and family-owned business that started just more than a decade ago in 2007.
Unlike most of its competitors, Taste of the Wild refers to what wolves eat on their daily diet, so this food brand sticks to the needs of a dog’s DNA in order to provide the most natural nutrition.
Taste of the Wild uses natural ingredients and natural proteins only. Their dog food doesn’t have artificial preservatives, consistent with their brand’s commitment. Aside from dog food, they have cat food as well.
Taste of the Wild is approved by the Association of American Feed Control Officials or AAFCO, ensuring the quality of their pet food.
On the other hand, Merrick has been established for a longer time. It started way back in 1988 when Garth Merrick, the founder of the food brand, wanted to feed his dog Gracie with home-cooked food.
Merrick researched what nutrition dogs needed, and that’s what eventually gave birth to the first ever pet food from the Merrick brand.
Today, Merrick is the go-to brand for dogs with sensitive tummies. They have a wide variety of dog and cat food as well, and the brand is AAFCO-approved too.
Taste of the Wild offers grain-free dog and cat food. The primary ingredients they use include fish, poultry, chicken, beef, eggs, peas, beans, sweet potato, and vegetables.
Taste of the Wild doesn’t use any artificial preservatives, therefore sticking to the most natural diet your dog could have.
Their line of pet food boasts great taste, high energy, quality nutrients, and natural antioxidants.
Some of our dogs may have sensitive tummies, and this is where the Merrick pet food shines compared to other food brands. They have a variety of foods that don’t contain dairy, gluten, and eggs.
This makes it perfect for dogs who have allergies or a sensitive stomach. Like Taste of the Wild, Merrick doesn’t use any artificial preservatives either.
Some of the common ingredients Merrick uses are meat, fish, sweet potato, peas, and fruits. They guarantee natural ingredients, high-fiber food, and nutrients that your dog needs.
A little tidbit of information for you dog lovers. Dogs need twenty-two amino acids for them to be healthy. Of these twenty-two, twelve amino acids are naturally synthesized and the remaining ten should be consumed.
Protein is the key to these ten remaining ones, so it’s essential that you look at the crude protein levels of any dog or cat food.
For wet dog food, Taste of the Wild has more average crude protein at 45.6%, compared to Merrick which has 43.8%
But for dry food, the protein in Merrick vs Taste of the Wild is higher at 37.2% Taste of the Wild only has 32% crude protein in the dry variant.
If you have an active dog who needs tons of exercise, the Merrick dry food would be more suitable since it’s high in protein. It will give your dog the energy he needs and nutrition for muscle and tissue development.
Like it is for humans, fiber is important to incorporate in a dog’s diet because it aids in digestion, helps promote healthy weight, and reduce diarrhea and constipation. So how does Merrick VS Taste of the Wild measure up?
For dry dog food, Taste of the Wild and Merrick have roughly the same amounts of fiber. Merrick has 4.3% of fiber and Taste of the Wild has 4.7%. It’s not much of a significant difference.
However, there’s a higher level of fiber in Merrick VS Taste of the Wild in the wet pet food variant. Merrick has 8.6% of fiber, while Taste of the Wild has 5.6%.
Fiber is a must-have for any dog’s digestive tract. When you look at it, this is to be expected in the Merrick pet food since they specialize in dealing with dogs who have sensitive stomachs.
Fats are another crucial component of a dog food meal. They help with the development and normal function of the body. In the aspect of crude fat, there’s not much of a significant difference between Merrick and Taste of the Wild.
For wet dog food, Merrick and Taste of the Wild have roughly the same amount of crude fat. Merrick is at 20.9% while Taste of the Wild has 20.6%.
For dry dog food, the difference is not so significant either. Merrick is at 17% while Taste of the Wild is slightly higher at 17.8%
Different dogs have different tastes, that’s why it’s important for any brand to have varieties that we can choose from.
Aside from taste, having options allows us to decide which nutritious components  we prioritize when it comes to our dog’s meals.
Both Merrick and Taste of the Wild offer great taste, so it’s not so hard for you to introduce your fur baby to new dog food.
However, here’s where both brands have a significant difference. Let’s look at Merrick VS Taste of the Wild when it comes to flavor offerings.
Taste of the Wild has two lines of pet food: Taste of the Wild and Prey Limited Ingredient. They have a total of 16 recipes of dry food and 5 recipes for wet food.
Most of these are for the Taste of the Wild line, as the Prey Limited Ingredient only has three dry dog food variants. Furthermore, the brand doesn’t offer dog treats, so you have to choose another brand for your treats.
Meanwhile, Merrick offers a much wider range of recipes you can choose from. Merrick has different formula lines like Grain-Free, Backcountry, Limited Ingredient, and Classic Healthy Grains.
They also have Lil Plates for toy breeds, and one of their bestsellers in this line is the Grain-Free Real Chicken and Sweet Potato recipe.
Merrick offers a total of 38 recipes for dry food, and 51 recipes for wet food. In addition to that, they offer cat food and dog treats as well.
Both Merrick and Taste of the Wild food brands are popular so they’re available in most pet stores and you can even buy them online and have them delivered to your doorstep.
You won’t have a hard time at all when looking for these dog food brands since they’re available in major pet stores or dog supplies.
Both Merrick and Taste of the Wild dog food have had recalls before. In its history, Merrick has had 6 recalls for Salmonella while Taste of the Wild has only one.
Still, it’s important to note that Merrick recalls are for their dog treats and not for their dog food. So in this aspect, Merrick and Taste of the Wild are both reliable.
With the reputation and the nutrition Merrick and Taste of the Wild can offer your pet, it’s more than safe to say that they’re both reliable brands.
There’s a noticeable difference in price when we compare Merrick VS Taste of the Wild.
Generally, Taste of the Wild is more affordable compared to Merrick. That’s why many dog owners lean towards this brand. Why is Taste of the Wild affordable?
Well, a big factor is that they don’t have to ship their pet food from other countries. This plays a big part in lowering the price for consumers like you and me.
So if you’re kinda in a tight budget for dog food, you can still get a high-quality brand like Taste of the Wild so you don’t compromise your dogs’ nutrition.
This is great perhaps for the person who’s looking after a number of dogs or those running a foster home.
On the other hand, the food Merrick produces is more expensive than that of Taste of the Wild. However, we can say that the price is justifiable given the ingredients they use and that they’re perfect for dogs with stomach issues.
Overall, both Taste of the Wild and Merrick are great brands you can feed your dog. They’re both full of nutritional value and natural ingredients that are sure to give your dog what he needs to live a healthy life.
The main difference really is that Taste of the Wild focuses on the Ancestral Diet, therefore giving your dog the diet that’s intended by nature.
Meanwhile, Merrick is made for dogs with sensitive stomachs as it contains no dairy or gluten. It’s also for super active breeds since it’s high in protein.
As we know, there are a lot of illnesses that can affect our fur babies. That’s why it’s absolutely important that we care about their diet. Like in humans, you really are what you eat.
We should also be attentive to their needs and behavior. Unfortunately, dogs can’t speak, so we have to pay attention if they’re behaving strangely. If they’re having any symptoms, it’s still best to consult a veterinarian.
But one of the biggest things we can do for our dogs is to provide them with food that’s best for them. And undoubtedly, Merrick and Taste of the Wild are two of the best brands you can consider.
You just have to take note of their differences and similarities so you can decide which dog food is best for their specific needs.
Conclusion: Taste of the Wild OR Merrick?
Taste of the Wild and Merrick are reputable brands when it comes to dog food. If you want to know which one of them is the best, it really depends on what you want and what your dog needs.
Taste of the Wild is best for dog breeds that are less active. It’s packed with nutritious natural ingredients with no artificial preservatives.
As such, Taste of the Wild will provide your dog with the nutrients they need even if they’re not used to getting tons of exercise.
On the other hand, Merrick is best for active breeds since it’s high in protein. It will give your dog what he needs for muscle and tissue development.
Merrick is also perfect for dogs who have sensitive tummies since this is what the Merrick brand is all about.