Simply Right Exceed Dog Food (Dry)


Rating: ★★★☆☆

Latest Update May Not Be Current
Unable to Locate Complete Label
Data on Company Website1

Simply Right Exceed Dog Food earns the Advisor’s mid-tier rating of 3 stars.

The Simply Right Exceed Dog Food product line includes two dry recipes, each claimed to meet AAFCO nutrient profiles for all life stages.

The following is a list of recipes available at the time of this review.

  • Simply Right Exceed Lamb and Rice
  • Simply Right Exceed Chicken and Rice

Simply Right Exceed Lamb and Rice was selected to represent both products in the line for this review.

Simply Right Exceed Lamb and Rice Formula

Dry Dog Food

Estimated Dry Matter Nutrient Content

Protein = 30% | Fat = 17% | Carbs = 46%

Ingredients: Lamb, chicken meal, brown rice, soybean meal, whole ground wheat, poultry fat (preserved with mixed tocopherols), pearled barley, sorghum, dried plain beet pulp, whole flaxseed, natural flavor, brewers yeast, dried egg product, salt, potassium chloride, choline chloride, vitamin E supplement, zinc sulfate, iron sulfate, zinc oxide, l-ascorbyl-2-polyphosphate (source of vitamin C), niacin, vitamin A supplement, copper sulfate, biotin, d-calcium pantothenate, manganous oxide, vitamin B12 supplement, thiamine mononitrate, pyridoxine hydrochloride, menadione sodium bisulfite complex (source of vitamin K activity), riboflavin supplement, sodium selenite, calcium iodate, folic acid, vitamin D3 supplement, cobalt carbonate

Fiber (estimated dry matter content) = 4.5%

Red items indicate controversial ingredients

Estimated Nutrient Content
Guaranteed Analysis26%15%NA
Dry Matter Basis30%17%46%
Calorie Weighted Basis25%36%39%
Protein = 25% | Fat = 36% | Carbs = 39%

The first ingredient in this dog food is lamb. Although it is a quality item, raw lamb 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.

The second ingredient includes chicken meal. Chicken meal is considered a meat concentrate and contains nearly 300% more protein than fresh chicken.

The third ingredient is brown rice, a complex carbohydrate that (once cooked) can be fairly easy to digest. However, aside from its natural energy content, rice is of only modest nutritional value to a dog.

The fourth ingredient is soybean meal, a by-product of soybean oil production more commonly found in farm animal feeds.

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 ingredient is wheat. Like corn, wheat is an inexpensive and controversial cereal grain of only modest nutritional value to a dog.

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

The sixth ingredient is poultry fat. Poultry fat is obtained from rendering, a process similar to making soup in which the fat itself is skimmed from the surface of the liquid.

Poultry fat is high in linoleic acid, an omega-6 fatty acid essential for life.

However, poultry fat is a relatively generic ingredient and can be considered lower in quality than a similar item from a named source animal (like chicken fat).

The seventh ingredient is barley. Barley is a starchy carbohydrate supplying fiber and other healthy nutrients. However, aside from its energy content, this cereal grain is of only modest nutritional value to a dog.

The eighth ingredient is sorghum. Sorghum (milo) is a starchy cereal grain with a nutrient profile similar to corn.

Since it is gluten-free and boasts a smoother blood sugar behavior than other grains, sorghum may be considered an acceptable non-meat ingredient.

The ninth ingredient is beet pulp. Beet pulp is a controversial ingredient, a high fiber by-product of sugar beet processing.

Some denounce beet pulp as an inexpensive filler while others cite its outstanding intestinal health and blood sugar benefits.

We only call your attention here to the controversy and believe the inclusion of beet pulp in reasonable amounts in most dog foods is entirely acceptable.

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 affect the overall rating of this product.

With five notable exceptions

First, flaxseed is one of the best plant sources of healthy omega-3 fatty acids. Provided they’ve first been ground into a meal, flax seeds are also rich in soluble fiber.

However, flaxseed contains about 19% protein, a factor that must be considered when judging the actual meat content of this dog food.

Next, brewers yeast can be a controversial item. Although it’s a by-product of the beer making process, this ingredient is rich in minerals and other healthy nutrients.

Fans believe yeast repels fleas and supports the immune system.

Critics argue yeast ingredients can be linked to allergies. This may be true, but (like all allergies) only if your particular dog is allergic to the yeast itself.

In addition, a vocal minority insists yeast can increase the risk of developing the life-threatening condition known as bloat. However, this is a claim we’ve not been able to scientifically verify.

In any case, unless your dog is specifically allergic to it, yeast can still be considered a nutritious additive.

What’s more noteworthy here is that brewers yeast contains about 48% protein, a factor that must be considered when judging the actual meat content of this dog food.

In addition, we find no mention of probiotics, friendly bacteria applied to the surface of the kibble after processing to help with digestion.

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, this food contains menadione, a controversial form of vitamin K linked to liver toxicity, allergies and the abnormal break-down of red blood cells.

Since vitamin K isn’t required by AAFCO in either of its dog food nutrient profiles, we question the use of this substance in any canine formulation.

Simply Right Exceed Dog Food
The Bottom Line

Judging by its ingredients alone, Simply Right Exceed Dog Food looks like an average dry product.

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 30%, a fat level of 17% and estimated carbohydrates of about 45%.

As a group, the brand features an average protein content of 32% and a mean fat level of 18%. Together, these figures suggest a carbohydrate content of 43% for the overall product line.

And a fat-to-protein ratio of about 55%.

Above-average protein. Above-average fat. And below-average carbs when compared to a typical dry dog food.

When you consider the protein-boosting effect of the soybean meal, flaxseed and brewers yeast, this looks like the profile of a kibble containing a moderate amount of meat.

Bottom line?

Simply Right Exceed Dog Food is a plant-based kibble using a moderate amount of chicken meal as its main source of animal protein, thus earning the brand 3 stars.


Please note certain recipes are sometimes given a higher or lower rating based upon our estimate of their total meat content and (when appropriate) their fat-to-protein ratios.

Special Alert

Because we’re unable to locate a company operated website that offers complete product information, we’re compelled to rely on photos collected by volunteers at various retail locations.

So, information manually copied from these images and used for analysis can lead to data entry errors, incomplete product listings and inaccurate nutrient averages.

In addition, recipe changes and ingredient substitutions may not be apparent to our research staff or consumers.

For these reasons, we recommend shoppers use caution when considering the purchase of any dog food listed in this review.

A Final Word

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

The Dog Food Advisor does not test dog food products.

We rely entirely on the integrity of the information provided by each company. As such, the accuracy of every review is directly dependent upon the specific data a company chooses to share.

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.

We rely on tips from readers. To report a product change or request an update of any review, please contact us using this form.

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.

However, we do receive a fee from for each purchase made as a direct result of a referral from our website. This fee is a fixed dollar amount and has nothing to do with the size of an order or the brand selected for purchase.

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

Notes and Updates

06/11/2016 Last Update

  1. As of 6/11/2016
  • sheba92766

    I started feeding my Rottweiler the chicken from Feb to April 2017. Decided to try the lamb, which he loved. 4 weeks ago he started throwing up several times a day, but didn’t seem sick. After 2 days I took him to the vet who ran tests & told me to feed him plain chicken & rice for a few days & start adding the Exceed back in slowly. After 4 days I added 1/2 a scoop into his evening meal & by 4:30 in the morning he was throwing up again. I took him back to the vet again for more tests. Vet determined that he has no health issues, it is something he’s eating. I’ve feed him chicken & rice since & he’s had no problems. I’ve begun adding another dry dog food the past few days & he’s had no problems. I notified Sam’s at the start of this who gave me the run around & I waited several weeks for a kit to mail the food back, which never came. I contacted them again & they stated they’d emailed me, which I never received & then gave me a number to call.

  • Ann Azzarelli-Sheeran

    i had the same problem….my husky had really bad diarrhea with the latest bag of exceed salmon and rice…I am going to bring back whats left and make a complaint !

  • Joy Lupo

    I had been using salmon and rice for about six months and all was fine. However two of my three dogs developed bad diarrhea with this last bag. I fed them only rice and chicken for a day and a half and they were fine. Went back to the food and diarrhea again. Won’t be using this brand again

  • Chris

    Love this food! I have four dogs and all have some sort of allergies. And so far, on this food, they have had zero outbreaks. Would highly recommend this food, great for the dogs and easy on the wallet.

  • zoe the chow

    Hi Asher,

    It’s made by Sams Club.

  • Asher fisher

    Can anyone get the manufacturers phone number?

  • Kalea Staton

    So I just bought a bag (12/2016) but my dog didnt start eating the new bag till 1/7/16. Anywho my dog has been on this food for about 3-4 years now due to her previous food allergies. It was the brand that didnt break the bank or her tummy. However she broke out with the new brand 🙁 (we also tried to switch to the lamb version in June 2015 and same problem). So whatever was in the lamb looks like it is in the new chicken brand and causing her allergies to break out 🙁 She is on medication for the next two weeks and we have switched to Pure Balance food (that my foster dogs are on). Heres hoping I find something that doesnt cause her to itch 🙁

  • Amber Harris

    Luis Velazquez we just lost our 5 and 1/5 year old sheltie a few days after opening and using their “new and improved formula ” all of our five dogs developed diarrhea but he had bloody diarrhea and according to our vet developed pancreatitis that resulted in high blood sugar as a result of not producing enough insulin. We had used this food for years with good results. After this formula change and his death i wouldn’t recommend this food to anyone for fear that they lose their beloved pet too.

  • Gray Resident

    “Red” ingredients that were removed are the filler Whole Ground Wheat and also Soybean Meal. This may make up for at least some of the 9lb reduction in quantity. New items that were not there before include Lamb Meal, Dried Peas (probably to make up for the protein lost with the loss of soy), and controversial ingredient Pea Protein. The order of some ingredients has changed as well.

    Overall (to me) it looks like a higher quality recipe than before. Maybe 3.5 to 4 stars.

  • Gray Resident

    I too noticed the size change and was pretty disappointed. I don’t know if the ingredient change is really worth a 20% reduction in quantity for the same price.

    These are the new ingredients (I typed them up so there may be typos)



  • Luis Velazquez

    how is their stool if you don’t mind me asking. I have 2 beautiful huskies as well and looking for alternatives

  • Amity Barton

    The maker of this food has changed the ingredients to remove Soy & Wheat now in their chicken formula Bag reduced size by 9 pounds and the price stayed the same. My dogs do well on this food and have for several years. Disappointed in the recent change regarding bag size and price though.

  • Judy S.

    My 2 huskies do well on both the Exceed Chicken & Rice, and the Salmon & Rice grain free. Their coats are shiny and no allergy problems. I haven’t tried the Lamb & rice yet. I have been using Exceed for about 4 years now. I spent LOTS of $$, even ordering special brands until I found this EXCEED. My huskies have NO allergy problems now, no more hot spots, thank God. For my girls, it’s GREAT!!

  • LabsRawesome

    If you have a Dell’s feed store near you, they also sell 4health.

  • Jessie Sowell

    I love 4Health Large breed puppy and high performance. I used it for 6 months with my GSD and Dobie and both loved it too. Only problem with it is that theres not a tractor supply in our new town ;(

  • Sliz the Great

    Old review. I read all the comments in this stream and some of the people on here are just fear mongering. Recall this, recall that! If the food makes your dog happy, they eat it with excitement at every meal, and they don’t kill you with their gas from it then what is the big deal. It so often sounds like some individuals on here call you a bad owner unless you feed your dog a food that has 31% bison protein or 29% whitefish. lmao!

  • theBCnut

    Any chance you could contact the company about it and share what their response is?

  • Ken

    I’m not sure what they changed in the recipe, but it now smells different and the pieces are very small, about half of the size as before, almost as if it was made for tiny dogs. My dogs are not excited to eat it as they were with the old recipe. They used to jump up and down for it and lick the empty bowls for several minutes and now they leave half full bowls for most of the day. It was actually pretty smelly before and now has a fairly generic dog food smell.

  • ERS.Remote

    The problem I’ve found with Purina is, they use Meat Rendering Plants as their source of meat (plus the price is too high, imo)…I STRONGLY urge people to Google, Meat Rendering Plants. Iams, Hill’s Science Diet all use the same source. Just take 10 mins to check this out.

  • Stephanie

    They were giving out 5 pound bags of it free at our SAMS Club in Kannapolis, N.C. today.

  • Aklopper

    oh great! I’ll check my store again before trying to find another alternative! Thanks!!

  • Matt Nickless

    It randomly showed up again at the stores here in NE Ohio late last week. Maybe they had supply issues or something? There are 3 versions of it of various qualities and pricing at the stores around here now.

  • Aklopper

    We had been using this and it was out of stock so we switched to the Purina One Smart Blend lamb and rice instead. Just got back from a $200 vet visit due to an allergic reaction to this food. 🙁

  • Aklopper

    We are having the same problem. We haven’t been able to find it now for a few months at our local club either.

  • Matt Nickless

    Does anyone know if this dog food was discontinued? We’ve been buying it for a few months now at Sams Club and have been really happy with it. Now it’s out of stock at all area Clubs, which strikes me as odd.

  • Spwhites

    Our Sams club told me they were trying to make a deal with the company that makes this dog food, that is why it was not in stock. It is now though.

  • Pattyvaughn

    I’ve got one that is intolerant of chicken, many grains, and tomato. When I find a food that works for him I feel like I’ve won the lottery. Good luck on finding more options for your’s.

  • TheWeeBee

    Oh I see! However my girl is highly allergic to any seafood byproduct, including fish oils commonly added for their Omega-3 content. I checked Abady’s kibble ingredients and they all had fish oils & meal 🙁

  • Pattyvaughn

    Oh, a balanced raw diet is definitely best. However, Abady is higher calorie than a normal raw diet as well as being balanced, but of course then you have to get back into whether or not the ingredients are going to contribute to the skin condition. Just thought it might be something you might want to be aware of, even if it isn’t something you would currently want to use.

  • InkedMarie

    I think she means Abadys granular to add to your dogs food

  • TheWeeBee

    I would just wind up paying 5X as much for their raw diet when I could prepare it at home and adjust the macros to what my girl needs. Chicken backs are $.99/lb, organic liver $2.69/lb, quick-oats are $3 for a huge tin, frozen veggies are $1/lb, free eggs since we keep chickens, etc. I can plan a week’s worth of fresh meals for under $10. Plus I know how the food was handled since I was the one prepping it 🙂

  • InkedMarie

    I was going to suggest that! I have a dog that needs to gain a little weight, I add Abady granular stress & maintenance to her feed

  • Pattyvaughn

    You may want to look into Abady.

  • TheWeeBee

    I’ve yet to find a commercial dog food that has enough fat content in it for my GSD. She is lean and VERY active and since switching to this food for the past several months she has lost weight (at best she’s only 55lbs) and has very poor skin condition. I’ve put her back on a raw diet which I know she thrives on (it’s just a pain in the butt to maintain) since I can tailor the macros for what she needs. And what she needs the most are fat and calories!

  • TheWeeBee

    Our GSD is allergic to any fish byproducts which is why we tried this food. We’ve always had trouble keeping weight on her since most commercial diets are geared towards fat, inactive dogs. Even high protein formulas don’t have enough fat for her to thrive on. it also causes her skin and coat to go to pieces and compromise her immune system. We’ve had to put her back on raw because of it, and she’s already starting to have more energy. We’re hoping her coat and skin improves with the improved nutrition as it has in the past.

  • Pattyvaughn

    Prebiotics are food for probiotics.

  • John

    What is the difference?

  • Pattyvaughn

    You said PREbiotics, the review says the bag doesn’t mention PRObiotics. They are not the same thing.

  • John

    The Sam’s Club website currently lists the new formula (i.e. no corn) and mentions: Made with prebiotics to help support digestive health.

    I find this curious because the review said the bag makes no mention of this. Was this missed by the site or is Sam’s Club false advertising?

  • wmw010166

    I found at our local farm store ‘rural king’ a brand called
    Diamond lamb & rice and he seems to be doing ok on this, The ing. are almost identical so I’m hopeful. Thanks

  • wmw010166

    Thank you so much for your help, I have carried around the ing. list from the exceed and have found at our local farm store ‘Rural King’ they carry a brand called Diamond lamb & rice that the ing. are so close I think it’s the same. looks and smells the same too. we are giving it a try and he seems… so far… to be tolerating it ok with no effects.. I hope it works, we go thru a bunch of food with 2 big dogs I’m sure you can relate. Thanks for the help.

  • GSDsForever

    Hi there. I’m a pretty experienced GSD person.

    And, yes, I know about allergies, skin & digestive issues, dietary intolerances, and various feeding issue w/this breed.

    I *believe* you when you say yours is allergic to (or at least intolerant) of many things . . . but I gotta be honest with you, from the looks of the ingredients posted above, it’s not exactly hypoallergenic in that it includes a number of common allergens.

    So, on a positive note, since your dog does well on it, that tells us your dog doesn’t have a problem w/


    Actually, that’s kind of amazing for a GSD, to NOT be allergic/intolerant of anything on that list or having issues digesting it/losing weight on it.

    Could you tell us what foods you’ve tried that your dog has NOT done well on, so we could suggest other foods you could use, maybe even better foods?

    What about Tuscan Naturals, since your dog does well w/chicken and lamb? It’s a good, relatively inexpensive brand with very simple, hypoallergenic formulas — Simply Pure Lamb (lamb/rice), Simply Pure Chicken (chicken/rice). The Carne formula is higher protein & fat (grain free), a good formula, but your dog would have to be good with a few more ingredients (fish, potatoes, peas). Many dogs w/allergies and intolerance have success with one of the formulas from Pure Vita/Natural Planet/Nutrisource. You might also look into Petguard’s Lifespan or other formulas, also Earthborn Holistic. You actually have a lot of choices if you can feed either chicken or lamb, not to mention those grains. Have you looked into ordering online? It opens up more choices, w/good prices & free shipping even.

  • houndhelper

    I did compare the two versions when the new one came out. Before this food was rated a 2 start food, now it gets 3. The changes I noticed is they took corn out of it, switched to brown rice and are using whole flax seed (which gets ground up in the production. The new formula is definitely better than the old, but not that much different.

  • houndhelper

    I will continue to feed this dog food to my seven dogs and have been for years. I like the new formula change. It’s a 3 star rated dog food at a one star price, it’s a very good deal from the money. To the people whose dog’s were sick after switching to this food, did you gradually introduce them to it like you are suppose to do with any diet change?

  • houndhelper

    I have the same problem at my Sam’s all the time. When I did a 100 mile search on their website last week there was only two stores within 100 miles that had it in stock. I have 7 dogs and don’t like the idea of changing their diet too quickly.
    To answer your question, the closest thing I have found is one of Purina’s higher end foods that is a lamb and rice formula. It’s about as close to Sam’s formula as you can find.
    I have only bought Sam’s chicken formula twice and had dogs have very serious allergic reactions to it. The lamb works well for my group.

  • wmw010166

    Does any one know what the equivalent to this food is, I have read all the reviews and understand that some people think it’s not the best however my German Shep is highly allergic to so much he will eat holes in his paws and this is one of the only foods I’ve found that he doesn’t do this on, and of course stupid Sam’s club is out of it!!! Help!!

  • GabE

    SPORTMIX WHOLESOME CHICKEN/RICE no recalls over 15 years 4Health it is a Diamond product has Recalls from Salmonella I feed 7 show dogs on wholesome it is qualify 4 star and 30 bucks 40lb

  • Humberto Yi

    it’s junk because it’s Sam’s? Sounds like biased based on your history, instead of actually looking at this food. I assume Merrick is junk too because of the recall they had?

  • John Ford

    you hold the torchfor animal owners. sams food is junk. your reviews are dampining the profits of the bad dog food brands, with your dog food alerts people have a sense of security knowing we are somewhat safe. the game is over for the crap food from china and toxic waste we were feeding our pets. one day I walked into sams club in bangor maine and all their dog food treats were at the front door marked down on clearance. later that night your alert for milos and wagon trail was on there. a disgrace as far as far as sams club part.please continue your dedication to this, for we all were in the dark before you and your knowledge came about. thank you.

  • InkedMarie

    Yeah, kind of what I thought, not expensive at all.

  • LabsRawesome

    4health is around $22 for an 18lb bag, and around $38 for a 35lb bag. I would not call that expensive. 🙂

  • Melissaandcrew

    I just picked up a bag of the Chicken Exceed for an elderly neighbor. She refuses to change foods, so off I went to get it as her Sam’s club had expired. It was under $33 for a 44lb bag of it.

  • InkedMarie

    4Health is spendy? I thought that was a cheap food. What do you pay?

  • Guest

    4 Health is speedy?

  • Dslot

    It’s been going really well. See reply above.

  • somebodysme

    4Health is reviewed, the very top of the list.

  • Dave Soko

    Have you ever done a review of 4 Health from Tractor Supply? When we bought our English Springer Spaniel from the kennel they had her on this and that’s all we’ve had her on for the last two years going from puppy to active adult food. Recently we tried Exceed from Sam’s. We’ve had poor results as she get diarrhea every night. I’ve always fed my dogs twice a day. Don’t ask me why, but I don’t subscribe to the once a day thing. I don’t eat once a day. I also give my dogs fresh fruit too like apples, etc. Never have had any problems. This last week with the switch over and now only Exceed Maddie has not done well waking us up in the early hours of the morning. My kids have been great helping me give her bathes and washing out her kennel. I’m probably going back to 4 Health.

  • Dave Soko

    We had our Maddie, a 2 year old Springer, on 4 Health from Tractor Supply from baby on. She did well on it, but it was spendy. We read the ingredients on the Exceed at Sam’s and thought we’d switch her. So we worked it into the diet. When she went on all Exceed and a little before she got the runs. My kids and I are getting tired of the early morning bathes and kennel cleanings because of it. My wife is planning on stopping by Tractor Supply to get her 4 Health again. I don’t understand why she’s not adjusting, but I better stick to what works. She’s not been happy the last few nights as we haven’t either.

  • Dave Soko

    We’ve not had good results. How has your results been?

  • Dave Soko

    Mine doesn’t either.

  • Dave Soko

    Just curious as to why? We got it for our Springer and she’s had the runs from it. I bought this 44 lb bag and I’m not sure I can even use it. I was just wondering if you tried it and to what result.

  • kétine

    I switched from pedigree to simple right exceed. It has done wonders for my dogs. Healthier weight. No more stinky farts. All around happier and more energy. make sure to buy the exceed simple right and not just the regular bag of simple right. that one is only rated a 1 star.

  • Dslot

    We have been on this food for at least 4 months now and my chocolate lab actually likes it more that the Kirkland lamb and rice brand. That’s a good food as well. Any other food besides these two and he gets food allergies and itches all over.

  • Pattyvaughn


  • Sherry Painter

    that has had many recalls.

  • Jon

    I feed my dogs Victor Premium and so far they’ve never had any recalls.

  • InkedMarie

    You get what you pay for. Dogs need meat in their food, not a bunch of carbs and fillers. The foods I choose to buy have a good amount of meat, high protein, low carbs.

  • Pattyvaughn

    Price is not the measure you should use to judge dog food. When one company like Diamond has a recall it affects many brands, when another company has a recall it may affect only one brand or it may affect three, but it probably will never affect as many different brands as a Diamond and it will never affect as many different dogs.

    Yes, all dog food companies are in it to make money, but some still have some integrity. Some of them implement recalls very quickly as a precautionary measure and others drag their feet and wait as long as possible.

    When you were born in 1953, they didn’t even try to use some of the trash that they put in dog food now. And they didn’t give all the chemicals and junk to food animals then that they do now. And vets weren’t telling people to feed only dog food, one brand, for life, and nothing else. We fed table food as well as dog food.

    Yes, dog food has gotten out of hand, but I suspect that you and I would disagree about how.

    BTW, I do make some of my own dog food.

  • marshak53

    I used this same Diamond Food for my two English Mastiffs. The bad thing was their bags are always breaking. I get alerts all the time from Dog Food Advisor and may I tell you that the so called top of the lines have had more recalls than the lower priced ones. By the way, Diamond manufacture Canidae which is a higher priced food. Bottom line, all the mfgs. are in it to make money and will do whatever necessary to make their bottom line. Oh, and what did the dogs eat back in my day? I was born in 1953 and believe me, they didn’t have all these high priced dog foods and those dogs did just fine. I think dog food has really gotten out of hand and people believe all the hype! If you want to really know what your dog is eating then may I suggest you make your own dog food??

  • Gay Wildes

    I won’t be buying it for my 5 dogs!

  • Deirdre Doyle

    You’re being too generous. “Poultry fat” is still pretty generic. And since when would anyone trust Walmart to do the right thing, or even be particularly honest if they don’t have to be?

  • Hi Matt,

    Sam’s Club has changed the ingredients without making any effort to advise the public. What’s worse, the new recipes and their ingredients aren’t even posted on the Net by the company.

    So, either Sandy or I are going to have to drive down to Sam’s and make some photos of their packages. A big hassle rarely needed when we review most other pet food brands.

    We should have the updated review as soon as we can make the trip to Sam’s. Thanks for your patience.

  • Matt

    this is a completely different ingredient mixture than the one i have. the new one doesn’t have corn or by products

  • The new recipes are not on their website.

  • Pattyvaughn

    It’s due to be updated as of this month, so hopefully that will happen very soon.

  • John

    When will this be updated?

  • Dslot

    We have a membership to Costco and Sams. I decided to try this food out for my 8 yo Chocolate Lab. He seems to like the Exceed Lamb and Rice much better than the Kirkland brand. It also smells much more wholesome. No allergic effects that I can see. Anything else I feed my dog and he itches like crazy. And I also agree that the ingredients need to be updated. The label showed much better ingredients than what is shown here. I will not be going back to the Kirkland brand.

  • Pattyvaughn

    It is due to be updated any day now.

  • Doberman1567

    This review needs to be updated!

  • InkedMarie

    No, not all the “best” foods have had recalls. Look at Dr Tim’s for a budget friendly food that has had no recalls. Might not be able to get it locally but you can order online

  • Pattyvaughn

    They are one of the foods I frequently recommend. They have a good reputation and a quality product for a decent price. And as you found out, COUPONS!!

  • stacym

    Fromm four star grain free is very reasonable and has never had a recall. Also if you contact the company, as I did to ask a question, they sent me a coupon for $5 off any size. They also respond to questions quickly.
    It is a five star rated food.

  • Pattyvaughn

    Sorry you found my comment to be smartass, as I was trying to understand where you are coming from, but you are telling someone what they shouldn’t feed based on your inability to trust them, yet you state you don’t trust any manufacturer. So does that mean that we shouldn’t feed anything? I was a little incredulous at your logic. I don’t like this food either, but that is neither here, nor there. BTW, based on what, do you say they obviously change the formula frequently?

  • Carey S

    I don’t trust ANY manufacturer. But I have to feed my dogs something. And I’m on a budget. And even the “best” foods have had recalls. And your smartass comment was helpful how?

  • Pattyvaughn

    And you would trust Diamond????

  • Pattyvaughn

    It’s due to be updated in the next couple months.

  • I was thinking the same. Maybe this review needs to be updated?

  • Carey S

    Hi, personally I wouldn’t trust it. They are obviously changing the formula frequently which can upset a dogs stomach anyway. An affordable, quality food (and what I feed all 5 of my dogs, 4 of which are show or performance dogs, is Diamond Naturals Chicken and Rice (which I believe is a 4 star food here)– it costs $28.99 for a 40 pound bag at Menards. Tractor Supply also has it similarly priced. My smaller breed dogs (chihuahuas) get Diamond Small Breed Chicken and Rice. I used to be a dog food snob and ONLY fed super premium, high end foods and would NEVER have fed Diamond, however I had one dog who had diarrhea on EVERYTHING including Evo, Before Grain, Natures Recipe, Chicken Soup, you name it…. So in desperation, I tried the Diamond Naturals Chicken and Rice and was so impressed, I switched all my dogs to Diamond. Good luck!

  • Pam

    I’m looking at the chicken exceed packaging. It says there are no by-products and no corn. First ingredient is chicken second is chicken meal. Other ingredients also seem quite different from what is listed above although it does include poultry fat preserved with mixed tocopherols, beet pulp and menadione sodium bisulfite complex. Has this product improved with time? Would you still consider it a two star, not recommended food? I am looking for an affordable quality product and this seems quite good.

  • Savannah

    As I feed my dogs this, I bought a bag of the new formula with the new ingreds (without corn, by-products). I can give you the ingredients to the Chicken & Rice if you’d like!

  • HI Lauren,

    Unfortunately, I cannot find a website operated by Sam’s or the maker of this dog food that displays all label information for this product line.

    This product is due for update soon. However, until someone physically visits a Sam’s and photographs the label from every product I’m unable to update this review.

    By the way, we tend to be distrustful of companies that hide their products from the public by not publishing label information on a publicly accessible website. You may wish to keep this in mind when deciding whether to purchase this or any dog food product.

  • Lauren

    The ingredients have changed from what you have listed on your review. I was just reading the side of the bag yesterday at my local SAMs club… The kibble (lamb and rice) includes no corn or by-products. Could you update? I generally won’t buy a food if your reviews say not to

  • houndhelper

    As of March 2013 this dog food has improved it’s ingredients. Two of the best changes have been the use of brown rice instead of brewers rice and the removal of corn.

    I have been feeding this brand of food to my pack (currently 7) dogs for several years and I am very pleased with it.

    My store was out of the lamb version a couple weeks ago and I bought Exceed chicken instead. Two of my dogs had a very bad allergic reaction to it so I would only recommend the lamb.

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  • melissa


    were your two dogs related? Love the picture. There is nothing quite like a schnauzer : )

  • Glitter2706

    the last time Chloe was had her glucose prior to the new food was 90, had no signs of diabetes, when there were signs her glucose was 559.

  • Toxed2loss

    Hugs to you! 🙁 it is heart breaking!!

  • Glitter2706

    Melissa,  Thank you for your kind words

  • Glitter2706

    Chloe’s vet has her on Hills Prescriptions Diet W/D for diabetic dogs with chicken & brown rice added; it doesn’t have a very good rating on this site but she is doing well on it.  I have told EVERONE I know about this website, our animals aren’t just animals…they are our family. Thank you for your post…this is the most heartbreaking thing.

  • Glitter2706

    Jade the one I had to put down had no signs; however she was always a trim girl; Chloe the other one had more muscle mass and more muscle she had a blood glucose of 130 but not signs of problem until she ate the food

  • Toxed2loss

    I’m so sorry to hear that! Let us know if you have any questions. :-} what will you be feeding them now?

  • melissa


    I am sorry for your loss. Diabetes is a common problem with some mini schnauzers. I would guess though that they were on the border of developing/showing signs of the diabetes and perhaps the sugar content of this food “threw them over” the edge.

  • Glitter2706

    I bought the Exceed chicken and rice and within 10 days both my Miniature Schnauzer lost weight and showed signs of diabetes; took both to the vet and sure enought both register HIGH (over 457) blood glocuse, within 2 days of vet visit I had to put one of my girls down. Spoke with Sam’s manager who dircted me to someone with Mars Petfood division who yesterday state there is nothing wrong with their product, they don’t tell you why the need to add a sweetner nor the % it contains.  I wished I had know about this site before I gave this product to them, I would  never have thought the things that are in this dog food!  I have requested the report from their research, I pray I get that but do not expect it

  • spankyapbt

    I have raised many high performance apbt chicken and rice has worked well ill mix dog chow for pups to lower protein if u want go top notch go with raw hands down especially if you show your hound…))

  • Vonderhossgsd

    I have been breeding and training German Shepherds for over 25 years. Exceed Chicken and Rice, years ago was 30% protein and 20% fat. They also used ethoquen as a preservative. Over the years Members Mark who sells Exceed to SAMS Club has changed the recipe for the better. The ethoquen is gone and the protein and fat has been lowered to 26 and 16. My dogs and puppies have done great on this food. When you have 7 to 8 dogs, cost is a major factor. For the money, this is the best food available.

  • Workingk9

    I’d say your dogs good health is due to the raw food you are feeding weekly, and in spite of the Exceed crappy dog food.

  • Just_jean

    My dog has had allergy problems for years and I bought a bag of Exceed Lamb and Rice at Sams Club and my dog has been doing 90 % better . I was thrilled about the food and now I don’t know what to do . I have 3 dogs and they all 3 are doing good on it .

  • Luckndi1

    I have fed Exceed Lamb and Rice to my German Shepherd Dogs for 14 years without a problem. My dogs are healthy and have nice coats. I am a GSD breeder and feed it to my puppies too. All the GSDs I have raised pass their OFA Prelim at 12 months old when 30% of hip dysplasia is caused by poor nutrition. I also feed raw natural on a weekly basis. I have heard the argument on the chicken by products, but when one of my dogs has eaten one of my egg laying chickens, the dog didn’t stop to take out the leg bone, partial eggs, feathers, beak or feet! They eat the whole chicken and in record time!  Lamb and rice is the easiest to digest and Chicken and Rice has too high of protein.
    Diane Cornish
    Von Gluckhaus German Shepherd Dogs
    Colorado State licensed and AKC inspected GSD breeding Kennel
    Paonia, Colorado

  • Julie

    I agree that this dog food is great. I only feed my dog this dog food and if I ran out and can’t find it for a while I use hambruger meat or fresh dog food until I can get the dog food back.

  • Gail

    I have been feeding Exceed Chicken & Rice Formula for over 15 years. I raise and show Australian Shepherds, and have finished MANY champions who have been raised on this food. Beautiful coats, healthy skin, no allergies, good muscle tone and energy. I also know many other breeders of show and performance dogs who’ve fed this formula for many years.

  • Julianne

    Melissa M. – I had the same problem. However, I do not like the ingredients in Exceed. I went with Nature’s Domain at Costco. It is $35.99 for 35 pounds however, I have to feed 4 cups per day to my 70lb goldendoodle vs. the 3 cups of taste of the wild or kirkland brand. It costs more per year than Kirkland but about $200 less per year than Taste of the Wild.

  • Melissa M

    We tried Costco food twice and both times have made our dogs have very loose and mustard color stool. Same thing with the 4Health. Both I undestand are made by Diamond. We have much better luck with the Sam’s Exceed but they changed the packaging and my husband said the second ingredient changed. We have now seen a change in stool on this food as well. Searching for something that won’t break the bank with 6 dogs.

  • Jan (Mom to Cavs)

    @Michelle….we, or my neighbor I spoke about above, don’t have Costco in our area but we do have Tractor Supply. I’ve talked with her about going there for a better food, like 4Health or Diamond Naturals or TOTW. Just doesn’t sink in, though! Oh well, I’ll keep trying.

  • Michelle

    Anyone feeding this would be better off to get a Costco card instead, and pick up some Kirkland’s. It is a 4* on this site. $25 for a 40lb bag. Much better ingredients.

  • Jan (Mom to Cavs)

    I have not heard of a recall on this food. My neighbor feeds her 2 dogs Exceed. I’m not a fan and I’ve tried to educate her, but they are real gunho Sam’s Club and buy most everything there. I’m fine with Sam’s Club (I’m a member, too) but I don’t buy dog food there. If they had a food I like, I would lol. As for this trainer….I actually know a trainer like this one. He’s very strict. He’s good, but not for me and my dogs.

  • John

    My father has used this for 10 years with his catahoulas. I have used it for 3 years with my lab/pit mix and beagle mix. I don’t consider it the best food in terms of ingredients, but I really do believe it is the best value food on the market. You get a decent ingredient for a great cost. For a recent college grad, this is what I need…..

    That being said, I noticed it is not available at my local Sams Club anymore. Has there been a recall?

  • melissa


    I am with you Antonio on feeding the Exceed, and if you are providing the food, I see no reason why the trainer would have a problem feeding it (Victor) to your dog. All the ingrediants are very similar on all these foods(Sams club) so if you have seen one, you have seen them all, lol.

  • Mike P

    Sounds like one bad ass trainer Antonio !

  • Antonio

    Does anyone have the ingredient list for the Exceed Chicken & Rice. My dog was scheduled to go off to training for 3-4 weeks, and the trainer insists on using this food, but I’m very much against switching my dogs diet from the Victor Brand, but the trainer isn’t changing his stance from Exceed so needless to say my dog won’t be seeing the trainer anytime soon.

  • Melissa


    If you are wondering if there has been a formula change, just look at the back of your bag-and compare to the Euk on line-you should be able to tell

  • Hi Bill… I am not aware of any report that this product has been “compromised”. Sorry I can’t be more help.

  • bill potamianos

    i have been using excced chicken for quite some time and my gsp’s are doing quite well on it but now i hear that it has been compromised and that it doesn’t match up wit eukanuba is this true

  • Troy Barnes II

    I just started feeding my pitbull Exceed I was feeding him Blue Buffalo which is a very good food but also very expensive and i have had people who raise pitbulls tell me about this food so i figured i try it

  • Hi Tom… Yes, you’re probably right. At 34% (dry matter) protein and 18% fat, Exceed Performance Chicken and Rice does appear to contain more meat than the lamb. However, the two products are mostly similar in ingredient quality. If we had chosen the chicken version of Exceed to be our example, it would have garnered a slightly better rating. Yet not enough to push it into the next higher category. In fairness to Exceed, it might be better to think of this product as a “2 plus”. In any case, since your dogs seem to be doing so well on this recipe, who’s to say it shouldn’t be a “three” to them. No need to switch. Hope this helps.

  • Tom McMahon

    Dear Dog Food Advisor,

    We feed our dogs Exceed Chicken and the first two ingredients are Chicken, Chicken by products. It then lists corn meal and corn gluten meal. Would this have a higher meat content than the Lamb formula and have a better recommendation than the Lamb? My golden retrivers seem to do well on it. We used to feed them old roy and when we switched to exceed their coat texture and shine really improved. If we switch to a 3 star, what would you recommend for a golden retriever. THey are larger too, in the 85 to 90 pound weight and they are not overweight. Thanks