Purina Fit and Trim (Dry)

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Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆

PRODUCT MAY HAVE BEEN DISCONTINUED

Purina Fit and Trim Dog Food receives the Advisor’s lowest rating of one star.

Although Purina Fit and Trim appears to be an adult dog food, we found no AAFCO nutritional adequacy statements for this product on the Purina website.

Purina Fit and Trim

Dry Dog Food

Estimated Dry Matter Nutrient Content

Protein = 28% | Fat = 8% | Carbs = 56%

Ingredients: Whole grain corn, meat and bone meal, whole grain wheat, soybean meal, corn gluten meal, corn germ meal, soybean germ meal, chicken, egg and chicken flavor, animal digest, animal fat preserved with mixed-tocopherols (form of Vitamin E), turkey by-product meal, salt, calcium carbonate, potassium chloride, L-Lysine monohydrochloride, added color (Red 40, Yellow 5, Blue 2), choline chloride, zinc sulfate, Vitamin E supplement, ferrous sulfate, manganese sulfate, niacin, Vitamin A supplement, copper sulfate, calcium pantothenate, garlic oil, pyridoxine hydrochloride, Vitamin B-12 supplement, thiamine mononitrate, Vitamin D-3 supplement, riboflavin supplement, calcium iodate, menadione sodium bisulfite complex (source of Vitamin K activity), folic acid, biotin, sodium selenite

Fiber (estimated dry matter content) = 5.7%

Red items when present indicate controversial ingredients

Estimated Nutrient Content
MethodProteinFatCarbs
Guaranteed Analysis25%7%NA
Dry Matter Basis28%8%56%
Calorie Weighted Basis28%19%54%

The first item in this dog food lists corn. Corn is an inexpensive and controversial cereal grain of only modest nutritional value to a dog.

For this reason, we do not consider corn a preferred component in any dog food.

The second ingredient is meat and bone meal, a dry “rendered product from mammal tissues, including bone, exclusive of blood, hair, hoof, horn, hide trimmings, manure, stomach and rumen contents”.1

Meat and bone meal can have a lower digestibility than most other meat meals.

Scientists believe this decreased absorption may be due to the ingredient’s higher ash and lower essential amino acid content.2

What’s worse, this particular item is anonymous. It doesn’t even specify the source animal.

Even though meat and bone meals are still considered protein-rich meat concentrates, we do not consider a generic ingredient like this a quality item.

The third ingredient is wheat. Wheat is nutritionally similar to and subject to the same limitations as corn (previously discussed).

The fourth ingredient is soybean meal. Soybean meal is relatively useful by-product — what remains of soybeans after all the oil has been removed.

Although soybean meal contains 48% protein, this ingredient would be expected to have a lower biological value than meat.

And less costly plant-based products like this can notably boost the total protein reported on the label — a factor that must be considered when judging the actual meat content of this dog food.

The fifth item is corn gluten meal. Gluten is the rubbery residue remaining once corn has had most of its starchy carbohydrate washed out of it.

Compared to meat, glutens are inferior grain-based proteins lower in many of the essential amino acids dogs need for life.

This inexpensive plant-based ingredient can significantly boost the total protein content reported in this dog food.

The sixth item is corn germ meal, a meal made from ground corn germ after much of the oil has been removed. Corn germ meal is a protein-rich by-product left over after milling corn meal, hominy grits and other corn products.

The seventh ingredient is soybean germ meal. We are unable to locate a detailed description of this particular item, an item that appears to be unique to Purina products.

The eighth ingredient is chicken. Although it is a quality item, raw chicken contains about 80% water. After cooking, most of that moisture is lost, reducing the meat content to just a fraction of its original weight.

After processing, this item would probably account for a smaller part of the total content of the finished product.

After the egg and chicken flavor, we find animal digest. Animal digest is a chemically hydrolyzed concoction of unspecified body parts from unspecified animals. This product is usually sprayed onto the surface of a dry kibble to improve its taste.

Next, we find animal fat. Animal fat is a generic by-product of rendering, the same high-temperature process used to make meat meals.

Since there’s no mention of a specific animal, this item could come from almost anywhere: roadkill, spoiled supermarket meat, dead, diseased or dying cattle — even euthanized livestock.

For this reason, we do not consider generic animal fat a quality ingredient.

From here, the list goes on to include a number of other items.

But to be realistic, ingredients located this far down the list (other than nutritional supplements) are not likely to have much of an effect on the overall rating of this product.

With five notable exceptions

First, we’re always disappointed to find artificial coloring in any dog food.

Coloring is used to make the product more appealing to you… not your dog. After all, do you really think your dog cares what color his food is?

Next, garlic oil may be a controversial item. We say “may be” here because we are not certain of the oil’s chemical relationship to raw garlic itself.

Although most experts favor the ingredient for its numerous health benefits, garlic (in rare cases) has been linked to Heinz body anemia in dogs.3

However, the limited professional literature we surveyed provided no definitive warnings regarding the use of garlic — especially used in small amounts (as it likely is here).

Thirdly, we find no mention of probiotics, friendly bacteria applied to the surface of the kibble after processing.

Next, the minerals listed here do not appear to be chelated. And that can make them more difficult to absorb. Non-chelated minerals are usually associated with lower quality dog foods.

And lastly, Purina Fit and Trim Dog Food also contains menadione, a controversial form of vitamin K linked to liver toxicity, allergies and the abnormal break-down of red blood cells.

Purina Fit and Trim Dog Food
The Bottom Line

Judging by its ingredients alone, Purina Fit and Trim appears to be a below-average dog food.

But ingredient quality by itself cannot tell the whole story. We still need to estimate the product’s meat content before determining a final rating.

The dashboard displays a dry matter protein reading of 28%, a fat level of 8% and an estimated carbohydrate content of 56%.

Average protein. Below-average fat. And above-average carbs when compared to a typical dry dog food.

When you consider the protein-boosting effect of the corn gluten and soybean meals, this looks like the profile of a kibble containing only a limited amount of meat.

Bottom line?

Purina Fit and Trim is primarily a grain-based kibble using a limited amount of meat and bone meal as its main source of animal protein, thus earning the brand 1 star.

Not recommended.

Those looking for a better kibble from the same company may wish to visit our review of Purina Pro Plan Selects dry dog food.

Special Alert

Rice ingredients can sometimes contain arsenic. Until the US FDA establishes safe upper levels for arsenic content, pet owners may wish to limit the total amount of rice fed in a dog's daily diet.

A Final Word

The descriptions and analyses expressed in this and every article on this website represent the views and opinions of the author.

Although it's our goal to ensure all the information on this website is correct, we cannot guarantee its completeness or its accuracy; nor can we commit to ensuring all the material is kept up-to-date on a daily basis.

Each review is offered in good faith and has been designed to help you make a more informed decision when buying dog food.

However, due to the biological uniqueness of every animal, none of our ratings are intended to suggest feeding a particular product will result in a specific dietary response or health benefit for your pet.

For a better understanding of how we analyze each product, please read our article, "The Problem with Dog Food Reviews".

Remember, no dog food can possibly be appropriate for every life stage, lifestyle or health condition. So, choose wisely. And when in doubt, consult a qualified veterinary professional for help.

In closing, we do not accept money, gifts or samples from pet food companies in exchange for special consideration in the preparation of our reviews or ratings.

To learn how we support the cost of operating this website, please visit our public Disclosure and Disclaimer page.

Have an opinion about this dog food? Or maybe the review itself? Please know we welcome your comments.

Notes and Updates

12/23/2009 Original review
07/23/2010 Review updated
01/10/2012 Review updated
07/12/2013 Review updated
07/12/2013 Last Update

  1. Association of American Feed Control Officials, 2008 Edition
  2. Shirley RB and Parsons CM, Effect of Ash Content on Protein Quality of Meat and Bone Meal, Department of Animal Sciences, University of Illinois, Poultry Science, 2001 80: 626-632
  3. Yamato et al, Heinz Body hemolytic anemia with eccentrocytosis from ingestion of Chinese chive (Allium tuberosum) and garlic (Allium sativum) in a dog, Journal of the American Animal Hospital Association 41:68-73 (2005)
  • Butchroy

    I will ask vet about that test. The vet never mentioned it and we did a lot of bloodwork over a month long period. The vet finally said Butch had a typical to pit bulls autoimmune disease and would probably not live long. This is also the same vet whose assistant wanted me to update Butch’s vaccinations while we are standing there worrying that he is dying! Red flag up in my brain immediately. This is one of the top vets in town, too. I have a little holistic type vet out of her home near my small town, but this was weekend of course so could not get into her. If I ever win the lottery, I am taking everyone to Dr. Becker. She is not far from me. I would love to take Butch there. Thanks Patty for you post.

  • Pattyvaughn

    There is a test for Von Willebrand. That’s also how a lot of people find out their dog got into rat poison. How scary!! I’m glad he’s doing well now.

  • Cyndi

    I’ve heard that story mentioned, but I can’t bring myself to look it up and find out about it. Things like that make me literally sick to my stomach. I followed the Patrick story when it happened and that was just heartwrenching. Those stories are actually a small part of the reason I’m not on facebook right now. It seemed like everyday I was coming face to face with cruelty pictures and stories and I just couldn’t take it anymore. I was at the point where I would cry every day over these poor innocent dogs that disgusting people are torturing and killing and I just couldn’t handle it anymore. I know it still happens, and I hate more than anything that it does, but I just can’t see it.

  • Butchroy

    Just a quick other note, I know we are not to discuss other things but I have been watching the Puppy Doe case out of Boston and they have just reported they have a person of interest out of Cincinnatti at this time. I have been so upset by this case I can hardly function. If you don’t know about just goggle it. Horrible. I want justice for Puppy Doe and all other cruelty cases. Good bye, friend. Talk again.

  • Cyndi

    Lol! I love that saying too. & it’s so true. I know my Moose is waiting for me. It brings me comfort to know that he’s with my mom, who he loved so much, and my dad and my brother. I’ll see them all again!
    I have a facebook page, but I haven’t been on there in a while for personal reasons. I am more than happy to be your friend anyways! :-)

  • butchroy

    Most precious Moose!!! I know they wait for us on the other side, I have to believe it. I miss all mine that have passed so much too. Wish you were on facebook, I could friend you! We are much alike! I love that saying, The more people I meet, the more I like my dog.

  • Cyndi

    This was Moose. I miss him more than anything, but Bailey has helped me alot.

  • Cyndi

    My doberman Moose died in 2011. He was 11 years old. My friend owned his mother and father and I delivered the litter he was in. He was with me since the day he was born. He died, I believe, from eating Iams and Purina crap all his life. He was perfectly healthy, or so I thought, at 11 years old, and I switched him and my cat to Purina One because I was brainwashed into thinking it was so much better. Both my cat and my beloved Moose died shortly after the switch.
    I adopted my Bailey in January of this year and found this site about a month later and that started my research on dog food. I switched Bailey to a completely raw diet in May and haven’t looked back. She is doing awesome on raw. I will never lose another pet to Purina garbage!
    I’m not on facebook, but I’ll check out that story, if I can. I love hearing about happy ending pit rescues! :-)

  • butchroy

    I love dobies as well, my sister has a beloved red girl, still has her ears, which I hate seeing them cut off. I have seen the surgery done and it is very bloody. Have you ever looked on facebook at Misty’s story, about a darling little pit with stand up ears that this woman rescued. Amazing, kinda looks like your baby. What is it you feed now? I have Butch on Darwin’s in the morning then I rotate dry with water on at night. I use Nature’s Logic, Nature’s Variety, Nutrisource, sometimes 4Health Grain free, etc. I really love Darwin’s. So does Butch!

  • Cyndi

    Awww, well I’m glad he’s ok now. I love pits! They are my 2nd favorite breed after dobermans. I wasn’t able to rescue a pit like I wanted to, because of the stupid insurance company and my renter’s insurance, so I did the next best thing and rescued a pit mix. My Bailey is pit/bordercollie. (but I tell people she’s a black lab mix.)
    Sounds like a scary thing you went thru with Butch. So happy he’s doing better and thank you for rescuing him!

  • butchroy

    Butch is pit from a pitbull rescue. He will be 8 years old in December. We love him so much, he had a strange bout with something that made him bleed out into his body, we thought we would lose him last year, but he has recovered, thank God, we never really knew what happened. I did see an article on Dr. Becker’s web site about Von Willebrand disease, it said the disease that can make playing with your dog fatal (something like that, not word for word) and that was how this episode was brought on. My adult son was playing ball with Butch too rough. Butch loves to play ball wildly and he seems so tough and strong that son would not listen to mom that play was getting too wild and rough. Then this happened, so maybe blessing in disguise since Butch is okay now. Son realizes dog is NOT invincible.

  • Cyndi

    Thank you! She’s my baby! :-) Yours if very handsome! Is he/she a pit?

  • butchroy

    I mean YOUR pup!

  • Cyndi

    I couldn’t have said that better myself! Thanks for chiming in!

  • butchroy

    I love you pup, Cyndi!

  • butchroy

    Please review this site carefully and find a more appropriate food for your precious baby. You got lucky in the past, I really think Purina is going backward in quality, I do not trust them any longer. Look up the top canned on this site. You will be glad you have come here when you start looking at all the wonderful options for your furbaby! The fact you came here means you love your pet and want to do what is best. Good Luck!

  • Cyndi

    Maybe find a better dog food with actual meat in it. You’re in the right place to do that, just look at the 4 or 5 star dog foods listed on here and read the reviews.

  • Kathy

    I have had 2 cockapoos that each lived 17 years. Neither had any health problems. They both ate Fit & Trim their whole lives. Now my 3rd cockapoo has been eating it for almost 5 years. I am very disappointed that they are discontinuing it. What do I feed her now?

  • LabsRawesome

    Ignore that person, Betsy. They obviously have issues, and nothing better to do with their time.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1140685339 Betsy Greer

    Hmm, what’s not to “like” about this statement? Or any of others that I’ve made in the past week or so…. I miss the accountability of the “old” format.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1140685339 Betsy Greer

    Really? Wow! That was a big switch that didn’t take much convincing. Glad you decided to change and that your dogs are doing so much better!

  • james lude

    I made a mistake on the brand it was Purina Fit&Trim Not Gains dog Food SORRY

  • james lude

    We changed to blue buffalo now and both dogs are up and Adam. They are almost back to normal. Our little dachshund had watery eyes and would push herself across the floor to rub her belly. As soon as we took her off Gains fit&trim she has stopped doing that. Her eyes do not look swelled any more. Thanks for this site. We might not have ever known that the food was the problem. The vet told us that they were just getting old and that grass might be the problem. Funny thing was we fed them Gains Fit&Trim before the grass started growing.

  • InkedMarie

    Labs & Betsy gave you good advice, change foods! Let us know if you need some help with that.

  • LabsRawesome

    james, your dogs are very smart. Have you read the review above? Fit n Trim is a grain based 1 star product. If you have a Tractor Supply store they sell 4health grain free for $22 for a 18lb bag. Or Walmart has Rachael Ray Zero grain at the same price point.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1140685339 Betsy Greer

    Hi James,

    Something may be wrong. I hope this means you plan to switch their food to something better.

  • james lude

    Our dogs don’t like it. They leave half in their dish. they act lethargic. They both gained weight on Home Style Kibbles & Bits . So we switch to Purina fit&trim hoping they would lose weight.,but after this second bag. They just lay around like something is wrong with them. All of a sudden they are getting bumps all over them.

  • Kelly

    Our German shepherd had been eating Fit and Trim. We just spent several hundred dollars running tests on her to figure out why she is so sick. She had extreme weight loss, excessive drinking, vomiting, chronic ear infections, hair loss, lethargic and several eye infections. Our vet could not figure out what was causing all of the problems. That’s when I saw the reports on the Internet about Purina making dogs sick/dying. We have taken her off the food and she is now eating Authority. ( carried at Petsmart) our girl is recovering and showing signs of improvement and more energy. Her hair is growing back as well.

  • LabsRawesome

    Hi SilverWolfLucid, While Blue Buffalo is a good food, it’s kind of low protein for the high price. Some better options with smaller price tags and higher protein, imo, would be- Hi-Tek Naturals grain free 5 star, Victor grain free 5 star, Earthborn Holistic Primitive Natural grain free 5 star. If you are willing to do canned dog food, I can suggest some budget friendly foods. 4health (Tractor Supply 4 star .99 cents per can) or Kirkland Cuts in gravy 5 star (Costco $18.99 per 24 pack).

  • SilverWolfLucid

    The food smells gross, and flies swarm it, my dog won’t eat it till he’s hungry. I was investigating dog diets, looked at the ingredients, then went to tell my mom how bad the food was. Going to take her shopping and buy some Blue Buffalo or some other higher quality pet food she’ll agree to buy. She doesn’t study anything about dogs, so it’s not her fault she doesn’t know how bad it is. Btw, get food from a good petstore. Walmart and etc leaves their food in storage, might be bad.

  • J Rhodes88

    Feed this to my dog and he lost all his fur. switched food and fur came back have two friends who experienced the same thing.

  • Andrew N.

    Garbage indeed. We started our yellow Labrador on Purina Puppy Chow, then moving her to Purina Fit & Trim (recommended to us by the vet). We did this for 5 years, putting up with occasional ear
    infections and Peaches nibbling at her paws … and all the while the
    vet is telling us the Fit & Trim is doing great for her weight, so
    don’t switch her food. More recently we noted frequent upset stomach,
    and the food dyes staining our carpet if she would vomit, so we dumped
    the vet and switched her to Nutrish Just 6 (for 3 months now). Ear
    infections gone. Hasn’t had diarrhea or an upset stomach since. Hasn’t
    put on any extra weight. I’m not saying this food is a cure all, but if
    you’re looking for an alternative to higher priced, more natural foods, give this a look as a step in the right direction.

  • Lesliemoonpie

    It’s garbage, don’t give this to your dogs. Your dogs will get really sick, switch to a higher grade dog food. They should take this crap off the market, worms and bugs have been found in some of the bags……good luck everyone.

  • Sally

    I have a lhasa apso mix that’s 15 years old. We started feeding him this because of weight issues. Well he didn’t have any more gas and lost some weight but then he was sleeping all the time and so we just thought that was normal he’s old and maybe going to die soon. Well then he started moaning and pacing around so I thought his stomach was hurting and then I stumbled upon this website and almost had a heart attack.
    I switched him to blue buffalo wilderness and all problems are gone and he has energy, his coat is softer and no moaning.

  • Bear the Sick Lab

    I can’t switch vets. The dog wasn’t originally mine and the stubborn owner that agrees with the vet because HE’S brainwashed is the one paying for his torn ACL surgery. The vet lectured me on how misinformed I was and people at Pet Smart are just trying to sell me something. Boo. Stuck between a vet and a hard place.

  • http://www.facebook.com/Toxed2loss Toxed2loss

    Gordon,
    “You vet is one of those Dr. Brennan McKenzie Antichrist disciples. A mainstream petfood industry brainwashed lackey…”

    ROFLMAO!!!

    DFN & Bob K, Touché!! GFETE

  • Bob K

    Gordon & Ninja – They just mislabeled that bag for years, it should have been labeled goat or pig food.

  • Gordon

    Your vet is one of those Dr. Bennan McKenzie antichrist disciples. A mainstream pet food industry brainwashed lacky, unfortunately. Time for a new vet I think, lol.

  • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ninja Dog Food Ninja

    Your vet, sir, should be forced to eat McDonald’s for a year.

  • Bear the Sick Lab

    My vet YELLED at me for having my dog on an expensive food and insisted he’s always done better and will do better on this food.

    All it is is corn and wheat and soy!! Don’t forget the pieces of random slaughter house rejects.

    :-(

  • http://DogFoodAdvisor.com Mike Sagman

    Hi Kairee… Based upon your symptoms, I’d suggest taking Buddy to a vet right away. Hope things work out for you.

  • Gordon

    Shouldn’t this formula be called, Purina Sick and Hyperactive? Shame on you Purina!

  • Kairee

    We have four dogs, a shi tzu, a jack russel, and a stray. We also have a chihuahua but she eats soft food bc she is ederly and has sensitive teeth. We switched to this food about a week ago, and only the shi tzu aka Buddy is having sickly issues. On the 5th day, Buddy started throwing up orange colored vomit, and I investigated his stoole and its kinda bloody, I don’t know if its the food or something else, but I am terrified he will pass away.

  • Charlene Luce

    I bought Purina Fit and Trim and after feeding my dog it once from the new bag and the second feeding i noticed it was full of magets crawling in it, very gross.

  • http://DogFoodAdvisor.com Mike Sagman

    Hi Wendy… Since dogs are a lot like us humans, each responds to the same food in its own unique way. Because of this unpredictably, it is impossible for me (or anyone) to assure you a particular food will provide the results you’re looking for. However, finding a high quality should be easy. Simply stick to a 3, 4 or 5-star dog food that meets your dry or canned needs… and, of course, your budget. Hope this helps.

  • Wendy

    This product was recommended to my dog with high cholestrol. He had lipid deposits on his eyes from the cholestrol. We had tried a number of RX dog foods, but nothing knocked down his cholestrol numbers (lipid deposits are gone!) like this. Now, I see how bad it is. What can you recommend in a high quality food for my dog.
    THANKS!

  • Jonathan

    Heck, the little bugs and worms would have probably been more nutritious than the food itself. No kidding. Don’t buy this product again because it’s garbage, infestation aside.

  • Carol Wadekamper

    I bought Purina Fit and Trim for my chocolate lab and put it in my storage bin which has a screw type lid so it will stay fresh.
    On the third day I opened the container and scooped up some to feed her and found the dog food had little black bugs and white looking worms. Don’t think I will be buying this product in the future.

  • http://DogFoodAdvisor.com Mike Sagman

    Hi Kathy… since Purina Fit and Trim is a one-star dog food, anything (affordable for you) that’s rated three stars (or better) will be a significant improvement for your dog.

  • Kathy Statler

    so what would you suggest?