4Health dog food is the exclusive pet food brand of Tractor Supply.
Although many pet owners may associate the company with products for larger animals, their 4Health brand offers surprising value and quality.
This dog food has grown in popularity mainly due to recommendations from pet owner to pet owner.
I’m a former vet tech who has used plenty of Tractor Supply products for larger animals. But after researching 4Health dog food, I recommend this brand for dog owners looking for quality pet food on a budget.
Keep reading this 4Health dog food review to learn more about its brand history and the quality of ingredients used in its recipes.
About 4Health Dog Food
Tractor Supply is a significant retailer trusted by animal lovers to offer high-quality products that support a rural lifestyle. Pet and livestock items comprise nearly half of their overall sales every year.
The company offers several exclusive brands of animal feed. 4Health is their brand of dog food.
Tractor Supply claims that their own team members choose 4Health and that the brand has grown by word of mouth from one pet parent to another.
Described as premium pet food for dog owners on a budget, the 4Health brand offers exceptional value for its ingredient quality.
There are also several product ranges in the 4Health line-up designed to meet most dogs’ unique dietary needs.
4Health Dog Food History
The Tractor Supply Company began operating in 1938. What started as a business that sold tractor parts via the mail eventually evolved into a nationwide chain of rural supply stores. Tractor Supply sells several brands of dog foods and introduced their 4Health brand in 2010.
4Health’s introduction to the pet market was an exceptional success. Because Tractor Supply owned the brand, it can offer the products at an incredibly affordable price.
However, the company does outsource manufacturing of its pet food products to other companies.
Today, 4Health continues to compete with more prominent pet industry companies with affordable pricing and an emphasis on ingredient quality.
Their line-up of products has also expanded to include recipes suitable for dogs with special needs.
Where Is 4Health Dog Food Made?
4Health is exclusively made for Tractor Supply. The Tractor Supply Company operates over 1,500 retail stores throughout the continental United States.
Tractor Supply has headquarters in Tennessee. But the production of 4Health dog food occurs in manufacturing facilities owned by Diamond Pet Foods.
Tractor Supply Company outsources the production of most of their animal feed products.
Schell and Kampeter own diamond Pet Foods inc. The company operates five large pet food factories throughout the United States that manufacture proprietary recipes and formulas owned by other brands.
While 4Health formulas are made in the United States, there is limited information about where they source the ingredients.
The ingredient quality found in 4Health recipes is high, but it is likely that Tractor Supply Company imports ingredients to keep costs down.
4Health Dog Food Brand Lines
Tractor Supply offers several product lines from the 4Health dog food brand. All of the formulas in these brand ranges meet AAFCO recommendations.
Remember to always consult your vet before making any changes to your dog’s diet.
The Original formulas from 4Health include both wet and dry dog food. The dry dog food selection features a wide variety of flavors and recipes suitable for various life stages.
The brand’s most popular formula for adult dogs is the 4Health Salmon Potato dog food recipe.
These products are grain-inclusive and suitable for the majority of dogs with average lifestyles. Tractor Supply describes the grain-based ingredients used in these recipes as wholesome grains that contribute high fiber, vitamins, and minerals.
Most Original recipes have multiple sources of animal protein, including egg products. Real meat is the first ingredient, no by-product meals, increasing the nutritional content of these recipes.
Animal protein is highly bioavailable for dogs and essential for ensuring your pup gets all of the amino acids he needs.
Additional ingredients include L-Carnitine, an amino acid that promotes lean muscle development.
4Health recipes also include prebiotics and probiotics that support gut health to improve digestion.
4Health also offers a lineup of Grain-Free recipes for dogs with grain sensitivities. These formulas feature higher levels of crude protein and added omega fatty acids.
Omega 3 fatty acids from flaxseed add healthy fats to the formula to promote a healthy immune system and coat.
Dogs use chicken fat as a primary source of energy. But these 4Health grain-free dog food recipes also include alternative sources of carbohydrates like potatoes and peas.
These grain-free formulas appeared on an FDA report warning pet owners about pet food brands with a potential link to heart health problems. So 4Health increased added taurine levels in their grain-free recipes to help support healthy heart function.
Like the Original lineup, the Grain-Free product range also includes a puppy formula. The grain-free puppy formula has high levels of proteins to support muscle development. And concentrated minerals help limit the risks of developing skeletal disorders.
4Health Special Care is Tractor Supply’s collection of specialty formulas designed to provide targeted nutrition for specific health needs. Recipes in this product range include recipes for Sensitive Skin, sensitive stomachs, and weight management.
Obesity is one of the most prevalent health problems in domestic pets. And the weight control formulas in this 4Health brand line are excellent options for dog owners who need to put their pup on a diet due to the low calories and fat content.
Some of these recipes are also grain-free. Formulas designed to soothe sensitive stomachs feature simple limited ingredient recipes that eliminate causes of specific food intolerances. A species-specific probiotic strain developed directly from the canine GI tract also helps support digestion.
Specialty formulas can be expensive. But 4Health’s line of Special Care dog food makes it accessible for pet parents to customize their dog’s diet to his needs.
Untamed recipes are 4Health’s answer to premium pet food brands producing dog food recipes based on the ancestral canine diet.
These wet and dry dog foods feature recipes inspired by the prey available in specific environments.
These recipes are also grain-free and include multiple sources of animal protein. The formulas’ crude protein content is higher than other 4Health options but not as high as competitive premium brands with similar recipes.
The macronutrient, vitamin, and mineral content of these dog foods is designed to be appropriate for all life stages. But this product line is best suited for average to large-sized dogs with more active lifestyles.
The Untamed product line features a slightly higher price tag than other 4Health formulas. But these products are still an excellent option for dog owners who want a more affordable alternative to premium regional diets.
The Strive product line from 4Health features unique nutrition specifically tailored for very active dogs. These recipes are suitable for hunting or working dogs that need a diet that fuels their high energy expenditure levels.
This lineup only includes two dry dog food formulas for performance or endurance. Both products have the highest level of crude protein out of every 4Health Dog Food at 30%.
They also feature a high 20% fat content to provide adequate calories.
The 30/20 ratio of protein to fat is commonly used in active dog foods. Fat acts as a source of energy, and protein is essential for building the muscle necessary for that dog’s activities.
Other highlights of this product range include additional glucosamine to ease discomfort in overworked joints. Plus, high levels of antioxidants help protect tissues from free radicals.
The ingredients list of most 4Health products consists of relatively healthy foods. Most of the ingredients are standard items found in most average dog food recipes.
While some companies have more premium ingredients, these brands typically feature significantly higher price tags.
Few other pet food brands offer similar quality at such a low price point. Plus, what 4Health leaves out of its dog food recipes is just as significant as what they include.
All 4Health formulas exclude corn, wheat, and soy. These ingredients are familiar sources of food allergies or intolerances in dogs. Tractor Supply also claims that their dog food products do not include any fillers, artificial colors, or artificial flavors.
As a former vet tech, I look for animal protein on any dog food label first. 4Health recipes feature real meat as the first ingredient, ensuring that omnivorous dogs get adequate protein levels from their diet.
Grain-inclusive formulas include high fiber grains like barley to support adequate energy levels. Fiber is also vital for maintaining a healthy digestive system by nourishing the gut bacteria necessary for breaking down food.
Most 4Health dog food products have a moderate crude protein and crude fat content suitable for most dogs.
Pups with a more active lifestyle can benefit from higher protein levels. But sedentary dogs need a reduced caloric content to prevent weight gain.
4Health Dog Food Recalls
Unfortunately, 4Health dog foods have been affected by an FDA recall that involved Diamond Pet Food. Here is a list of 4Health dog food recall history.
- May 2012 – The FDA recalled all 4Health dry dog food due to the potential for salmonella contamination. [FDA]
You can view a complete list of all dog food recalls sorted by date.
Legal Issues and Controversies
Like many other brands manufactured in Diamond Pet Foods facilities, 4Health has experienced dog food product recalls. Some pet owners question dog food production safety by large corporate factories, but it is unlikely that Tractor Supply Company will move to in-house production.
4Health also appeared on a June 2019 report of 16 pet brands that the FDA believed may potentially link to an increased risk of heart disease in dogs. Most of the formulas included on the list are grain-free. But the investigation into this link is still ongoing.
If you have a dog with an increased risk of cardiovascular disease, consider opting for a grain-inclusive 4Health formula until the FDA releases more guidance.
Tractor Supply Company passes on cost savings to their buyer with their own brand of 4Health Dog food.
I recommend 4Health dog food as one of the best budget pet foods available on the market today.
This pet brand’s affordability comes from the parent company selling it directly in stores, not a lower ingredient quality.
Compared to other products with a similar price, 4Health offers superior ingredient quality and formula selection. Their expansive brand lines include formulas suitable for nearly every dog. Talk to your vet today to determine if 4Health dog food offers the best value for your dog.
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