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Disclosure: Watchdog Labs is free to use. When you buy through links on this site, we may earn a commission.

About Watchdog Labs

Our Mission

Rebuild the Pet Food Industry One Kibble at a Time

Our Team & Advisors

Simon Saval
Co-Founder
Tyler Turner
Co-Founder
Dr. Kendra Pope, DVM
Veterinary  Advisor
Dr. Heather Lollar, DVM
Veterinary  Advisor
Dr. Jennifer Coates, DVM
Veterinary  Advisor
Dr. TB Thompson, DVM
Veterinary  Advisor
Dr. Eric Weiner, DVM
Veterinary  Advisor
Dr. Angela Dwyer, DVM
Veterinary  Advisor
Dr. Chris Kennedy, DVM
Veterinary  Advisor
Dr. Elizabeth Racine, DVM
Veterinary  Advisor
Dr. Maxbetter Vizelberg, DVM
Veterinary  Advisor
Christina Housenick
Lab Testing Advisor
Tentamus North America
Vy Goddard
Regulatory Advisor
Tentamus North America
Ritu Hassan, J.D.
Legal Advisor
Sawyer Barnwell, J.D.
Legal Advisor
Jonathan L. Hood, Esq
Legal Advisor
Jeff Fucci, J.D.
Compliance Consultant
Daniel Collins
Compliance Advisor
Georgina Canseco
Design  Advisor
Maple
Dog Food Fan

Get in Touch

Got questions or comments? We're here to help!

Contact Us

How We Test Dog Food

Watchdog Labs uses science to help you choose the best food for your pet. We secretly buy dog food online and test its nutritional value in our certified labs. We then analyze each product's features, ingredients and recall history. The result are simple ratings that help you easily choose the best food for your dog.

Product Selection

Product Selection

We review a wide variety of foods to help dogs of all breeds and sizes and owners with different budgets. We select products that include bestsellers as well as lesser known products, from both large and small brands.

Our selections are independent and we never accept any payments, sponsorships, free samples or ads from manufacturers. Have a product you think we should test? Please let us know!

Purchase

Purchase

We purchase our dog food samples the same way you would buy it - real products from real online stores. These products are then shipped to our lab partners, just like you would receive them when ordering online.

Stores and brands don’t know when and where we buy our samples. We always pay full retail prices and we never accept samples from manufacturers.

Lab Tests

Lab Tests

We test all foods in ISO-accredited labs in the United States. The testing involves strict guidelines and quality standards. Our tests are performed with blind samples to prevent bias and use all AAFCO recommended best practices and AOAC methods.

In short, this means we have top scientists using the best equipment and testing methods to produce fair and reliable results. Also, very importantly, we pay for all testing ourselves and never accept manufacturer sponsorships.

Product Features

Product Features

Part of our rating methodology is to check dog food features like “Made in the USA” and “No Artificial Colors.” We find this info on food labels and on the product website.

This information is included for your convenience but not all of it factors into the product ratings. Our search tools for dry dog food and wet dog food let you filter products based on these features.

Ingredients

Ingredients

We research and analyze hundreds of ingredients found in dog foods and show you which ones are controversial. These ingredients are not necessarily bad, they are just not universally agreed upon as good. Some may want to avoid controversial ingredients altogether.

Recalls

Recalls

Determined by the number of recalls for this brand. We track reports from the company, FDA and other sources.

Recalls can be issued for many reasons, including contaminants and labelling issues. Keep in mind that recalls can be voluntary and that they can include non-dangerous product recalls.

Trust

Trust

We are 100% independent - we never accept payments, free product or sponsorships from pet food manufacturers. All of our content is published for free. Our ongoing research to protect pets is funded by a small commission earned when you buy products from links on our site.

Get in Touch

Got questions or comments? We're here to help!

Contact Us

How We Rate Products

Our ratings use a simple scale from 0% to 100%. The final rating is a weighted average of four sub-ratings which are also 0% to 100%. We use a proprietary rating algorithm to calculate each score to ensure that all products are ranked fairly and using the same standard. No preference is given to any product or brand.

Category Averages

To make comparing food easier, we show you the average sub-rating for products in their category.

Get in Touch

Got questions or comments? We're here to help!

Contact Us

Our Funding Model

We believe trust needs to be earned. That’s why we are 100% independent from pet food manufacturers - we never accept payments, free product or sponsorships. Our ongoing research to protect pets is funded by a commission we may earn when you buy products from links on our site. These links are included when possible, no matter what the product’s rating is. Commissions are paid by the online retailer, not the food manufacturers, and you still pay the same price.

Get in Touch

Got questions or comments? We're here to help!

Contact Us

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Made with love in Cambridge, MA.
© 2019 Watchdog Labs Inc. All rights reserved.
Watchdog Labs, Watchdog Score and watchdoglabs.com are trademarks of Watchdog Labs Inc.

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DISCLAIMER: All content on this website, including but not limited to statements about products are to be construed as opinions only. All statements made by or associated with Watchdog Labs, Inc., including but not limited to text, graphics, videos, web content, social media content, e-mails, marketing and informational materials, advertisements, statements made by company representatives, and repeated statements which originated from third-party sources are to be construed as opinions only. Watchdog Labs, Inc. is not responsible for the quality or the veracity of statements or information from third-party sources. Third-party sources shall include but not be limited to labs, online stores, sellers, other websites, brands and manufacturers.

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DISCLAIMER: Our reviews and testing are necessarily limited in scope, and products may vary significantly from one package to another and from one store to another. We may only test one batch of a product from one store. Our opinion is based on that limited testing.

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DISCLAIMER: These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration or the Association of American Feed Control Officials. Products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. Always consult your veterinary professional before choosing any products for your pet.

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DISCLAIMER: Actual product packaging and materials may contain more and different information than what is shown on this website. Always read all labels, warnings, and directions before using a product.

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DISCLOSURE: When readers buy products on this site, we earn a commission that supports our work.

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Watchdog Labs is not affiliated, associated, authorized by, endorsed by, or in any way connected to the brands and companies mentioned on this website. All trademarks, copyrights, and other rights are the property of their respective owners. See our Terms of Service for DMCA notices.

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