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Merrick Dog Food Reviews : US Sourced Ingredients

  • August 31, 2018
  • / Best Dog Foods
  • / By Drew & Gunnar

The Merrick Pet Care Company was created in 1988 by Garth Merrick dog food, his wife, and their 4 children. The company was started at their ranch in Hereford, Texas, and the main aim of the company was to make nutritious and wholesome pet foods. The very first product from the Merrick kitchen that was introduced to the pet market was a treat named Flossie.

Merrick Dog Food

Garth took this treat to trade shows and pet owners were very pleased to the point where it was successful instantly. But, Garth did not stop there. He began his plans for developing dog food that was high in protein, all natural, nutritious, and of the highest quality.

Soon afterwards, he was successful and many pet owners liked his dog food formulas. Today, Merrick dog food is one of the fastest growing natural pet food companies in the industry.

The company has hundreds of employees and over 100 dog food recipes. Garth’s initial vision is encompassed by the company’s tagline which is ‘at Merrick, we don’t just make pet food, we make the best food ever’.

Merrick Brand Highlights

  • One of the fastest growing natural pet food companies
  • Over 100 dog food recipes
  • All natural pet foods
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    Made in Texas

Merrick Dog Food Overview

  • Made In: The USA
  • Manufactured By: It was Merrick Pet Foods, Inc, but as of July 2015, it has been taken over by Nestle Purina
  • Free Of: Artificial flavors, artificial colors and chemical preservatives. No corn, wheat, or soy
  • Fat-to-Protien Ratio: 43%
  • Dry Food Flavors: 11
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    Recalls: None
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    Bag Sizes: 4 lb, 12lb, 25 lb Bags
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    Amount of Meat: Significant
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    Protien: 38%
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    Fat: 17%
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    Carbs: N/A

Processing Methods at Merrick Dog Food

All of Merrick’s dog food is made in Hereford, Texas, where their kitchen is located. Because they own the processing plant that manufactures their foods, they have very good control over the quality of their product.

Their kitchens are 5-star quality and they attempt to maintain and exceed standards set by the FDA.

Merrick dog food has also developed a partnership with NSF Cooke and Thurber, as well as Safe Quality Food and HAACP in order to enhance the safety and quality of their food. The partnerships were created so they could make improvements to their management systems in order to further develop their products.

Recently, Merrick received a level 3 SQF (Safe Quality Food) certification which is a verification of the fact that their facilities are in full compliance with the safety plans developed by HACCP.

Merrick Dog Food Ingredients

All the ingredients that are used in Merrick dog food products are sourced in the USA from local farmers and ranchers. Their foods do not contain any fillers or by-products. In fact, they do not even use artificial coloring, preservatives or flavoring.

The first ingredient listed on the packaging of any Merrick product is the one that is most dominant in the product. This ingredient is always inspected by USDA and is often deboned meat or fresh produce. Upon close inspection of all ingredients in Merrick Dog Food, you should notice that they are impressive in quality and safety.

This may be linked to the fact that Merrick dog foods has invested both money and time into conducting research that has helped to create their fantastic recipes with lesser ingredients, which is amazingly beneficial to any dog. It is certainly impressive to note just how much research and analysis this company has actually performed in order to manufacture natural and holistic dog food.

Merrick does contain a couple of controversial ingredients including potato protein and alfalfa.

Potato protein contains over 80% protein but has a lower biological value than meat. It's inclusion in a formula can boost the protein content of the food without boosting the nutritional value.

Alfalfa is high in protein (18%) and fiber. It is uncommon on dog foods, being more associated with horse-feed.

Pros

  • Uses salmon oil, which is rich in omega 3 fatty acids
  • Meat is the first ingredient
  • Grain and gluten free
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    No artificial preservatives, sweeteners or colors
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    Contains dried fermentation products that provide enzymes to aid digestion
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    Contains chelated minerals that are easier to absorb

Cons

  • They use pea protein which is lower in biological value than meat
  • Formulas contain alfalfa, which is a horse food

Why Merrick is One of the Best Dog Food Brands

The Merrick slogan says it all- the best dog ever deserves the best food ever. One of the best ways to test the quality of a product is to see what long time users have to say about the brand and, for Merrick, the reputation of the company is very good among pet owners.

Many pet owners have noticed very significant and positive changes in their pets since they made a switch to the Merrick brand. For those who have always been using Merrick, there are very few complaints.

The Merrick brand does live up to its claims of being a natural dog food that is completely nutritious and very tasteful. The safety and quality of Merrick products have been very consistent and, to date, the company has had only four instances where some product batch had to be recalled for fear of Salmonella.

Despite these recalls, the high quality of ingredients used in their formulas and the nutrient content of the overall products that they manufacture are very good and appropriately suited to many dogs.

Not to mention the fact that their dry dog food product line has just about 11 varieties of products, 9 of which can be used at any stage of a dog’s life. With that much variety, the Merrick dog food brand is definitely a force to be reckoned with.

Recommended Formula: Merrick Grain Free Real Texas Beef & Sweet Potatoes

Of all the formulas that Merrick has developed over the years, I would most recommend the Merrick Grain Free Real Texas Beef and Sweet Potatoes (via Amazon).


This particular formula has real deboned beef as the very first ingredient which means that it is very rich in meat protein. In fact, this dog food has 70% meat protein with the remainder of it being fresh produce.

As the name suggests, the recipe is grain free and absolutely none of its ingredients have been imported from China.

It is rich in Omega 6 which is very vital for dogs, and as with all Merrick products, it contains all natural ingredients.

Like all Merrick products, this dog food is very reasonably priced if you consider the value and quality of the ingredients that are used to make the product. Moreover, this particular product can be eaten by your dog at any life stage, so you do not have to worry about switching dog foods later when your dog gets older.

Gunnar's Favorite Merrick Dog Food Flavors

Flavor

First 3 Ingredients

Calorie Distribution

Cost

Grain Free Real Texas Beef

Deboned Beef
Lamb Meal
Sweet Potatoes

Protein - 38%
Fat - 15%
Fiber - 3.5%

on Amazon

Weight Management

Deboned Beef
Lamb Meal
Salmon Meal

Protein - 38%
Fat - 17%
Fiber - 3.5%

on Amazon

Grain Free Healthy Weight

Deboned Beef
Chicken Meal
Potatoes

Protein - 32%
Fat (max) - 11%
Fiber - 5%

on Amazon

Conclusion

If consideration is given to the ingredients used by the Merrick dog food brand, it does seem to be much better than the average brand of dog food.

The meat quality and content in each bag of dog food are very high compared to many other brands, which would give dogs a lot of meat protein and eliminate the need for protein supplements.

With grain free formulas and carb levels that are less than many brands, the Merrick brand is definitely among the top brands of dog foods that are available for sale.

Recently, the Merrick dog foods brand was sold to Purina which is operated by Nestle, which many people are not happy about.

Thankfully, so far there seems to be no real change with the Merrick brand and it seems to have continued with the great quality products for which it has been known.

Merrick has assured it’s customers that it will still operate as an independent company with the same quality standards and ingredients.

Please Note:

The opinions and analysis contained on this website are my own personal views - along with Gunnar's input of course - and countless hours of research.

These reviews are here to help you make a more informed purchasing decision in regards to feeding your dog the best food possible. Be aware though, that every dog is unique and no food will be good for all dogs. If you are in doubt, consult a qualified veterinarian.

Puplore does not accept money, gifts or samples from dog food companies. I do receive a small affiliate commission if you decide to purchase from our links which allows me to pay my bills on time and continue to spoil Gunnar as much as I can!!

About the Author Drew & Gunnar

As you can see, Gunnar makes Drew do all the work but heading outdoors with your best friend is never really work! Drew buys the products and Gunnar does the testing so you can rest assured you are reading the most up to date information to make the best decision for your dog's health and well-being!

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