Purina One Review 2021

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Purina ONE was Purina’s first line of premium pet food, and — without question — is one of the better products this brand produces. 

In this Purina ONE review, we’ll take a look at several of the options offered by this company. 

This line is widely available at most commercial pet stores, making it quite popular. Compared to other premium dog food brands, it is also decently inexpensive. 

According to the company’s website, this particular line focuses on natural ingredients. However — as you’ll find out — just because this food is advertized as premium doesn’t mean it includes many premium ingredients. 

Keep reading to find out if this is a suitable food for your furry friend. 

Purina ONE Line Introduction

purina one dog food

Purina ONE is an older line within the Nestle Purina family. 

This dog food manufacturer is one of the largest in the world, and they have a portfolio that contains over 30 widely distributed brands — including the Purina ONE line. 

This brand was the company’s first premium line, though they now offer several others. They established it to focus on natural ingredients. 

Like most Purina brands, this one is quite inexpensive. However, due to its “premium” status, it costs a bit more than some of the other Purina lines out there. Many owners find the natural ingredients worth the extra price, though.

Overall, it is a mid-tier dog food that is marketed as a premium option for those on a budget. 

What Kind of Dog Food Does Purina One Offer?

Purina ONE focuses almost exclusively on their “Smartblend” collection. Within this collection of pet foods, there are several specialty formulas — such as for senior and overweight dogs. 

Their True Instinct line is older and seems to focus on more exotic ingredients. For instance, many are marketed as containing things like venison — higher in protein than other formulas they offer. 

Both of these lines include both dry and wet food. 

Purina One SmartBlend

Purina ONE Smartblend is advertized as focusing on smart nutrition. 

Most formulas include elements like antioxidant blends, omega fatty acids, and a variety of vitamins — all designed to improve your dog’s health. 

Like many Purina ONE recipes, all Smartblend products include some sort of meat as the first ingredient. However, this isn’t always the meat advertized on the package, so be sure to check before making your purchase. 

Our Recommendation: Purina ONE SmartBlend Lamb & Rice Adult Formula

The Purina ONE SmartBlend Lamb & Rice Adult Formula Dry Dog Food includes real lamb as the first ingredient, as well as a variety of other protein sources. 

Purina ONE SmartBlend Lamb Rice

Key Features:

  • Omega-6 fatty acids for a healthy coat
  • Glucosamine to support healthy joints
  • Variety of proteins included


Purina One True Instinct

While the True Instinct line differs more than the others, it seems to be focused on natural and difficult-to-find ingredients. Meats like venison and duck are commonly included. 

It is also marketed as containing more protein than other formulas. 

This particular line does not include any by-product meals. Instead, it contains more whole meat. 

Our Recommendation: Purina ONE True Instinct with Real Turkey & Venison High Protein

This recipe includes 30% crude protein, thanks to the turkey and chicken meal included as the first ingredients. 

Purina ONE True Instinct with Real Turkey & Venison

Key Features:

  • Antioxidants for a healthy immune system
  • Omega fatty acids for healthier skin and coat
  • Whole turkey as the first ingredient


Purina ONE Ingredient Analysis

Most of the Purina ONE recipes begin with a source of whole meat — but it’s not always the meat advertized on the package. Typically, a cheaper meat source like chicken or turkey is utilized. 

Be sure to double-check the meat used before purchasing your dog food, especially if you’re looking to avoid an ingredient due to allergies. Whole chicken usually isn’t displayed on the front of the bag, but it is often included in these recipes. 

Most of the meat ingredients included are whole meats. These foods also contain a lot of water, so after they are cooked into a dry food, they are likely a much smaller part of the final product than the ingredient list makes it look. 

After the meat source, a number of these formulas include many less-than-stellar ingredients. Corn gluten meal is commonly included, which is the protein-rich part of corn that is left after the carbohydrates are removed. 

While corn gluten meal is very protein-dense, it’s derived from a plant. Therefore, it has a lower biological value than meat-based proteins. 

In other words, your dog will have a harder time using this protein as energy. 

This product works to artificially raise the protein content of the food. It may appear higher on the guaranteed analysis, but much of this protein actually comes from gluten. 

Many Purina ONE dog foods also contain corn of some sort. Corn is cheap, and it doesn’t actually contain many vitamins or nutrients for your dog. For the most part, corn is simply a low-cost way for companies to keep your dog full. 

However, some of their wet food formulas are free from corn, wheat, and soy.

Corn also causes allergic reactions in some cases, so it’s not always a good alternative for dogs that are allergic to wheat. [1]

Other cereal grains are in these products as well, including rice flour, brown rice, soybean meal, and similar ingredients. 

These all have identical problems to corn — they’re inexpensive, and they don’t really include much nutrition. 

These formulas are not grain-free, by any means.

Poultry by-product meal and similar by-products are also found throughout these formulas. By-products are what’s left over after the human-grade ingredients have been removed. 

This can include a whole host of different items.

By-products can be a good source of glucosamine, but there are much better ways to include this ingredient. 

Some poultry by-product meals contain fewer nutrients than whole meat. It does depend on the type of by-product used, but this is not listed in any of the Purina ONE ingredient lists. Therefore, we simply don’t know how nutrient-dense the foods they’re using are. [2]

Beef fat and other types of fat are in these dog foods. This is a high-quality ingredient that adds flavor and fat to the food, though it may not sound very yummy to us. 

Caramel color is widely included in the Purina ONE line. This coloring is a known health risk in foods for both dogs and people, so its addition is disappointing. [3]

Peas are commonly used in this formula as well. This is a bit controversial since peas are currently being investigated by the FDA for their link to heart disease in dogs. [4]

While Purina ONE does have many quality ingredients, it also has many different ingredients that are not so high-quality. They may be cheaper than most premium brands, but there is a reason for this. 

Purina ONE Reviews

Purina ONE is widely known as one of the tastiest foods for dogs to eat. Many dogs seem to love it. For instance, one dog food review stated that their dog hardly eats anything but Purina ONE True Instinct with Real Turkey & Venison High Protein Adult Dry Dog Food:

“My picky 10yr old pit loves this! Purina One beef was the only dry food he will eat. I know he always gets tired after awhile & won’t touch his food anymore so I tried this Turkey & Venison one. He licks the bowl clean!”

You can read more Purina One reviews on Chewy.

Another user stated that their dogs were picky but generally ate the Purina ONE True Instinct with Real Turkey & Venison High Protein formula:

“My dogs were picky eaters till I found this dog food. They love this! I know I can buy the large bag and save and they keep eating it.”

You can read more Purina One reviews on Chewy.

And many more reviews followed a similar pattern. While this dog food does have some lower-quality ingredients than others, dogs do seem to enjoy it! 

Purina ONE Recalls

Purina as a company has undergone several recalls. This is to be expected, as they are a larger company and make quite a few different foods. 

This line, in particular, has been recalled twice.

In August 2013, the Purina ONE Beyond White Meat Chicken & Whole Barley Recipe Adult Dry Dog Food was recalled due to a possible salmonella risk. [5]

Purina ONE Vibrant Maturity 7+ dry cat food was recalled in July 2011 due to another possible salmonella risk. While this isn’t a dog food, it is a part of the Purina ONE line. [6]

Besides these two recalls, this company hasn’t had any similar problems.

To stay updated on all Purina One recalls, please visit the FDA website.

Our Verdict

Purina ONE is, absolutely, one of the better product lines that Purina produces. However, while it is advertized as a premium dog food, it doesn’t include many premium ingredients. 

Instead, ingredients like chicken by-product meal, rice flour, and other similar items are common. 

Therefore, we are forced to give this food a lower-than-average rating. Our dog food reviews in this article should make it clear that — while this food is sold at a premium price — you’re probably better off spending your money elsewhere. 

There are better brands on the market that produce high-quality dog food for a similar price. We recommend choosing Merrick, Natural Balance, or Taste of the Wild instead. 

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AUTHOR
Kristin has been writing about dogs and their nutrition for the last four years. She enjoys educating pet parents on the best things to feed their beloved furry friends using the latest scientific research.

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