Dry dog food in a bowl beside raw dog food and vegetables

Knowing that the food a dog eats is a major factor in their short and long-term health often drives owners to look for the best dog food that they can possibly find.  

This path can also lead to researching home made dog food and the potential health benefits associated with this.  There are however some differences in homemade food such as raw vs cooked, and many other factors to consider. 

Below I will cover a few different aspects and discuss the pros and cons of both homemade dog food and store-bought dog food for each of them.


When I say control, I mean control of the ingredients included.

For homemade dog food you have complete control of all the ingredients that you include in the dog food. If you don’t want to include something you don’t have to. 

While control in store bought dog foods is more limited you still have the plenty of options to choose from to meet your desires and needs. 

Getting the right balance of ingredients if you make your own dog food can be trickier to achieve. Also, you might not get the optimum balance of ingredients as you would from a quality store-bought dog food that is nutritionally well balancd, including all the important vitamins and nutrition. The right balance can be much more difficult to attain when you make your own.

Yorkshire puppy licking lips in front of a bowl of tasty dog food


The variety of dog food is somewhat subjective at this part. If you use the same dog food all the time for both options, then the variety will be more limited with your own homemade dog food. That’s because usually in pre-made dog foods you have a better balance and variety of ingredients, so it meets all of your dogs nutritional needs. 

The same doesn’t usually apply for someone using the same homemade dog food course, if you are varying your dog’s homemade meals every day, but this often isn’t as practical to make a different meal for your dog every day. 

American Cocker Spaniel eating food, isolated on white background


Again, this part is subjective. If you opt for store bought food that is cheaper and uses cheaper ingredients, it is simply not going to be as good quality as homemade dog food.

Though if you opt for a higher quality dog food like this Ultra Dog Food – Sensitive – Fish and Rice you won’t have this problem. The quality of ingredients used and inclusion of important minerals like fish oil which includes omega 3 & omega 6 can be really beneficial for your dog’s health. For a dog food like this you get a host of important ingredients/minerals added which would be almost impossible to replicate if you were making your own food. 

When making your own dog food you can include quality ingredients but usually the this will be is more simplistic with fewer nutrients compared to a high-quality store food.


Obviously, convenience is a massively important factor when considering making homemade dog food. Making your own dog food can be quite time consuming and often won’t keep fresh for too long without going bad. 

Realistically you will have to make food every 2-3 days to keep the food fresh for your dog. 

Of course, with store bought dog food you don’t have that problem, you just have to choose a high quality food like the Ultra Dog Food, mentioned before, which comes in different varieties


When making your own dog food things could realistically be cheaper but also more expensive depending on what ingredients you decide to use. 

If you opt to make your own dog food with good quality ingredients and compare that with a high-quality dog food the price for making your own tends to be a little higher, though it can depend on a host of factors. 

Point here being that price isn’t necessarily the biggest difference between the two options. Though of course the cost of dog food is an important part of the total cost of owning a dog which can mount up. Try and work out both individually based on your own preferences to get a rough estimate of how much each option could cost you.

Puppy posing with food bowl. Horizontally framed shot.

In Conclusion

In conclusion both making your own dog foods and buying store bought food have pros and cons. 

To say which is better, well there isn’t really a clear answer for that. 

The better thing to think of is what works best for me and my dog. I feed my dog a store-bought dog food most of the time but maybe 1 day a week I will make my own homemade dog food. 

This offers my dog a treat and some variety. I also enjoy the experience of making it and I am certain my dog loves that weekly treat. This means I don’t spend too much time making it but it’s both a treat for me to make my dog some homemade dog food and a treat for my dog as well. It’s best of both which really works great for me.

David Gray
Dog Blogger and Founder of Dog Desires