Gravy Train Dog Food (Dry)


Rating: ★☆☆☆☆

Gravy Train Dog Food receives the Advisor’s lowest rating of 1 star.

The Gravy Train product line includes 5 dry dog foods.

Each recipe below includes its related AAFCO nutrient profile when available on the product’s official webpage: Growth, Maintenance, All Life Stages, Supplemental or Unspecified.

Important: Because many websites do not reliably specify which Growth or All Life Stages recipes are safe for large breed puppies, we do not include that data in this report. Be sure to check actual packaging for that information.

  • Gravy Train Small Bites [U]
  • Gravy Train Beefy Classic [M]
  • Gravy Train Meaty Classic [M]
  • Gravy Train Hearty Pot Roast Flavor [M]
  • Gravy Train Hearty Classic Chicken Flavor [M]

Gravy Train Beefy Classic was selected to represent the other products in the line for this review.

Gravy Train Beefy Classic

Dry Dog Food

Estimated Dry Matter Nutrient Content

Protein = 19% | Fat = 9% | Carbs = 64%

Ingredients: Corn, soybean meal, meat and bone meal, wheat middlings, animal fat (preserved with mixed tocopherols), animal digest, salt, calcium carbonate, cellulose gum, wheat flour, caramel color, minerals (ferrous sulfate, zinc oxide, manganous oxide, copper sulfate, calcium iodate, sodium selenite), choline chloride, vitamins (vitamin E supplement, vitamin A supplement, niacin supplement, d-calcium pantothenate, riboflavin supplement, pyridoxine hydrochloride, thiamine mononitrate, vitamin D3 supplement, folic acid, biotin, vitamin B12 supplement), natural and artificial beef flavor, red 40, BHA (preservative), yellow 5, yellow 6, blue 2, rosemary extract

Fiber (estimated dry matter content) = 4.4%

Red items indicate controversial ingredients

Estimated Nutrient Content
Guaranteed Analysis17%8%NA
Dry Matter Basis19%9%64%
Calorie Weighted Basis18%21%61%
Protein = 18% | Fat = 21% | Carbs = 61%

The first ingredient in this dog food is corn. Corn is an inexpensive and controversial cereal grain. And aside from its energy content, this grain is 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 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 third ingredient is meat and bone meal, a dry “rendered product from mammal tissues, including bone, exclusive of any added 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. So, the meat itself can come from any combination of cattle, pigs, sheep or goats — which can make identifying specific food allergens impossible.

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

The fourth ingredient includes wheat middlings, commonly known as “wheat mill run”. Though it may sound wholesome, wheat mill run is actually an inexpensive by-product of cereal grain processing.

Unfortunately, the variations in nutrient content found in wheat middlings can be a critical issue in determining their suitability for use in any dog food — or even livestock feeds.3

In reality, wheat middlings are nothing more than milling dust and floor sweepings — and an ingredient more typically associated with lower quality pet foods.

The fifth ingredient is 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 pets.

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

The sixth ingredient includes animal digest. Animal digest is a chemically hydrolyzed mixture of animal by-products that is typically sprayed onto the surface of a dry kibble to improve its taste.

The seventh ingredient is salt (also known as sodium chloride). Salt is a common additive in many dog foods. That’s because sodium is a necessary mineral for all animals — including humans.

However, since the actual amount of salt added to this recipe isn’t disclosed on the list of ingredients, it’s impossible to judge the nutritional value of this item.

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 six notable exceptions

First, we find wheat flour, a highly-refined product of wheat milling. 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.

Next, we’re always disappointed to find artificial coloring in any pet food. That’s because coloring is used to make the product more appealing to humans — not your dog. After all, do you really think your dog cares what color his food is?

In addition, caramel is a natural coloring agent made by caramelizing carbohydrates. It’s used by pet food manufacturers to impart a golden brown tint to the finished product.

However, the concentrated version of this ingredient commonly known as caramel coloring has been more recently considered controversial and found to cause cancer in laboratory animals.4

In any case, even though caramel is considered safe by the FDA, we’re always disappointed to find any added coloring in a pet food.

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

Additionally, 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 is preserved with BHA, a suspected cancer-causing agent.

Gravy Train Dog Food
The Bottom Line

Judging by its ingredients alone, Gravy Train Dog Food looks like a below-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 19%, a fat level of 9% and estimated carbohydrates of about 64%.

As a group, the brand features an average protein content of 19% and a mean fat level of 9%. Together, these figures suggest a carbohydrate content of 64% for the overall product line.

And a fat-to-protein ratio of about 47%.

Below-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 soybean meal, this looks like the profile of a kibble containing a limited amount of meat.

Bottom line?

Gravy Train is a plant-based dry dog food using a limited amount of named and unnamed by-product meals as its main sources of animal protein, thus earning the brand 1 star.

Not recommended.

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.

Gravy Train Dog Food
Recall History

The following list (if present) includes all dog food recalls since 2009 directly related to this product line. If there are no recalls listed in this section, we have not yet reported any events.

You can view a complete list of all dog food recalls sorted by date. Or view the same list sorted alphabetically by brand.

To learn why our ratings have nothing to do with a product’s recall history, please visit our Dog Food Recalls FAQ page.

Get free dog food recall alerts sent to you by email. Subscribe to The Advisor’s recall notification list.

Dog Food Coupons
And Discounts

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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

10/10/2017 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. Wheat Middlings as defined in an article by Wikipedia
  4. Consumer Reports February 2014
  • Briggs

    My dogs are not “fur kids”, but OK =)
    And what I meant was that $25 per bag of food for one or two small dogs doesn’t add up to as much as it would if someone were feeding 4 or 5 larger dogs.

  • anon101

    I know someone that has a 13 year old peke, he has some medical issues but he looks good, bright eyed and bushy tailed, could pass for a 7 year old.
    Owner says she only feeds him Blue canned food.

  • anon101

    I understand. Your dog is under the care of a vet, if the vet says the food is working for her, I would trust his judgement.
    I like Zignature, but sometimes I wonder if my dogs wouldn’t do just as well on Pro Plan Focus. Might try it for one of my dogs……
    I always add something like a bite of scrambled egg and a splash of water to the kibble (all kibble is so dry)
    So much marketing stuff, hard to know what to believe.

  • Tiffany Tandel

    Go ahead and do that. I have student loans and other things to pay for. She’s a dog, and the vet says she’s fine. If you want to be a food snob, go for it. It’s a dog.

  • Tiffany Tandel

    My dog is on multiple medications for urinary incontinence and arthritis. They’re over 50$ a month, so yes. 25$ is a lot. And she’s a dog. If you want to treat your dog like it’s a human, go for it. She’s a dog, and the vet said Blue is perfectly fine.

  • haleycookie

    It’s just really frustrating. I had a lot of people on wilderness salmon for allergies and then all of a sudden I had customers coming in with dogs that had bleeding skin from scraping so much out of no where. Vet visits and unnecessarily spent money on chicken allergies. All because blue decided it wouldn’t mention it was going to make the salmon formula more chicken based then salmon. But most of those people I have switched to wellness core or Merrick Backcountry and their ocean fish foods.

  • Briggs

    $25 more per bag isn’t a huge deal if you have a pet dog or two.
    If you have a ton of pups that work their butts off on a daily basis (seasonal), it’s different.
    Raw all the way; it works for us and is waay cheaper than Blue and all those fancy premium brands.

  • Briggs

    The recall list doesn’t bother me so much as the way the company handles it.
    When their opinion on recalls is “Whatever” I steer clear.
    Too bad as their food looks great on paper. Having one pet on commercial diet, we’re always open to finding out information on ingredients and company is always worth while as companies are always “improving” (changing) formulas at the drop of a hat, and if our pets preferred food changes it’s nice to have a back up.

  • Briggs

    LOL @ “she’s a DOG.” How derogatory to those who consider their pets as beings that deserve a bit of learning on the part of the owner.
    We’ve been raw feeders for decades. Super cheap food. If we switched our entire pack to commerical feed, we wouldn’t feed Blue our lives depended on it despite the increase in cost from raw to that diet….
    Now go do your homework.

  • haleycookie

    If you trust a company that has shady selling tactics, multiple recalls in one year, and who doesn’t even make their own food in their own factories. By all means go ahead.
    Not saying chicken meal is bad. It’s definitely a high allergen and feeding it for a dog’s whole life will increase risks of allergies but blue buffalo added it as second ingredients in all of their fish varieties which uses to be chicken free back in the day without telling their customers. It also brings down the worth of the food. Chicken meal is far cheaper then deboned salmon. But for some reason the bags of food went up 10-20 dollars. Strange. But like I said if you like companies like that then keep wasting your money. Some of us think of our pets more than just a dog or cat. They are family and we like knowing where our food comes from and who is making it. 25$ a month would be worth it to me for a supreme quality food but I guess everyone is different.

  • Tiffany Tandel

    Calorie dense is not necessarily better, and chicken meal is perfectly healthy to feed a dog. My dog eats 320 calories (about a cup) for each meal. A bag will last a month and a half. 50$ a bag. Orijen is about 450 calories a cup-definitely not twice as many calories. I’d be paying about 25$ more per bag for the same food.

  • haleycookie

    If you’re feeding blue you are probably still grossly over paying for a not so great quality food. I’ve seen almost 20$ price jumps in the last 3 years on several of their varieties. That have also sneakily put chicken meal into every single formula except the basics formulas.” To cheapen the food production while still jumping prices. Without telling anyone. To me blue does not have very good ethics. They’ve also had about 3 recalls this year I think. It probably cost about 20-30$ to make a bag of that (and they charge about 60$ depending on which kind you get). It’s also a lot less calorie dense than Orijen. Orijen original (80$ for 25 lbs not 100$ btw) is almost 100 more kcals per cup then original blue life protection. You’d also feed about a half cup less if your dog was say 20 lbs (1.5 cups on blue and 1ish cups on Orijen) so in the end you’re still probably paying the same for blue buffalo. A much lower quality food.

  • Cathy Koh

    Yeah, like my dog.

  • Cathy Koh

    Blue Buffalo is considered decent, I was talking about the one star and two star foods.

  • Tiffany Tandel

    Okay…my point exactly. My dog, who doesn’t eat 100$ worth of food every month and is still in great shape, is older than you. She eats Blue Buffalo, and it’s half the cost. She’s a DOG. Now go do your homework.

  • Cathy Koh

    So? I’m only 10. I also use my savings and Chinese New Year money to buy treats and wet food.

  • Tiffany Tandel

    You got your parents to buy it? That explains a lot. My dad doesn’t feed my dog for me.

  • Cathy Koh

    Maybe you’re the one who needs to educate yourself. I used to feed 1st Choice (which me and my dog owning friends call “last choice”) and my dog was horrible on it! When I got my parents to get to their senses and buy Orijen and Acana, my dog improved drastically! Now all my not-so-close-but-still-friends friends keep thinking my dog is 5, when she is in fact 12! I don’t think you can get this success on any foods lower in quality than Orijen and Acana. BTW Orijen is only not so affordable in Singapore, my dad checked the prices for it in the USA and it was twice as cheap (even after all the oh my gawd why is SGD so much smaller conversion) so imo it is very affordable.

  • tom

    Sar…yeah, not going to listen to you, anyone who feels the need to resort to name calling over a dog food brand is not mature enough to deserve any credence at all. my 2 10 year old dogs have been on gravy train most of their lives and are doing fine.

  • Joanna Marie

    If you’re broke enough that you need a food as cheap as $1 per pound, try dog chow instead.

    It’s not great but at the very least Purina actually conducts research and feeding trials….

  • Joanna Marie

    Many dogs fed a better diet can still run fast at that age.

  • anon101

    You can always add a bit of scrambled egg or lean cooked chopped chicken or meat and some water (important to add water to dry foods)
    Just use the kibble as a base.
    Try a half of a raw carrot for a snack.

  • Tiffany Tandel

    “THE BEST” foods are subjective. Not everyone can afford to feed their dog 100 dollars worth of food every month. That’s not a crime, and many experts have said that “grain free” is not a necessity for dogs. Dogs are omnivorous and perfectly capable of processing grains. So…educate yourself and stop being such a snob.

  • Joanna Marie

    It has non labeled meat and bone meal as well as nondescript “animal fat”. Turkey can easily be included in that.

    This is a horrible brand all around

  • ST

    Growing up, we fed our dogs (golden retrievers and chocolate lab) Gravy Train and they lived long healthy lives. The last one passed away at 17 years of age in 2008.

  • SAR

    It’s rated “so low” as this company uses ROAD KILL, DISEASED and EUTHANIZED ANIMALS, in addition to SPOILED supermarket meat. That is why it is rated “so low,” you intellectually sub-normal Trolidite.

  • SAR

    PLEASE EDUCATE yourself on what you are feeding your “baby” in the future. I am so sorry of your loss, and if you choose to have another “baby,” ONLY feed him/her THE BEST foods, which is either Orijen and/or Petcurean. My babies, are on a “rotational diet,” where I introduce 4 different flavors/foods every few days, adding a new one, This only only keeps their interest in the food up, but more importantly, it stresses their immune and digestive system to produce THE HEALTHIEST baby possible. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out to me, and I would LOVE to help you in any way possible: [email protected] – Scot is my name; Namaste )'(

  • bailees momma

    Well not everybody’s dog is allergic to turkey, and my dog loves this food she chooses it over any other brand so I would suggest people who have small dog breeds to use it more than people with large breeds, I mean heck my cat likes it better then her own food!

  • andrea Freeman

    I just lost my fur baby due to this food. I have 2 other dogs who will not eat it anymore. My dog got sick Thursday and I kept giving him fluids and IV and he passed Saturday. My son feels its his fault and it was nothing he could of done to help him. Now its Monday and neither of my other dogs have eaten since Last Thursday bc they won’t touch that food. I don’t know what’s in it but Rocky didn’t deserve it… and I think its pretty sorry for this to have happened and its crazy bc I know of 2 others families that’s dogs has pass within 2 days of mine from eating this food and was told it was bacteria infections. Don’t know about you but my fur babies are my kids.

  • InkedMarie

    I suggest you type “how we rate dog food” in the search engine here to learn why this food is rated so low.

  • Mr DonW

    I have 2 dogs, raised on gravy train. They are now 10 and 12 years old. Still healthy and still chasing squirrels (they cant catch them any more, too old to run fast enough). Have tried other dog food, even mixed it with another brand, they eat the gravy train and leave the other brand. If it has worked this long, can’t see how it can be rated so low.

  • Sandy Tighe

    NONE of those “foods” and/or “treats” you mentioned in your post are healthy! Do some research!

    Also, since you posted your comments 2 years ago I’m wondering if your pup is still happy and healthy.

  • Sandy Tighe

    Plus that…humans don’t normally eat the same crappy food EVERY DAY for EVERY MEAL like dogs often do. Raw food, lots of variety, raw meaty bones for my girl. No kibble with vitamin mixes from China and “food” sourced from no one knows where!

  • Sandy Tighe

    BUT…the vitamin mix is from China! And where are the ingredients SOURCED from? The fact that it’s “American made” means nothing!

  • Suzie Nelson-Peters

    I have 3 dogs and I feed them gravy train… and they love it.. I have gone through many other expensive dog food and always my spaniel mix had bad experiences with hair loss and itchy skin… I was at my wits end .. I bought gravy train one because that is a dog food that while growing up we always feed to our dogs… my dog has never been better.. a full coat of fur.. no rash . AND most of all.. they LOVE IT… I believe that some dogs just can’t it the other stuff MADE in China… GRAVY TRAIN is AMERICAN MADE

  • mahoraner niall

    good to know! but my dog is fine eating the plain food, but i was saying if it was as easy as adding water to the kibble, she would love it! But im not going to go out of my way just so she can enjoy her dinner a little more, since shes perfectly fine eating it as it is.

    But thanks for giving me the rices of some high quality canned foods! i like to fill her kong toy with wet food once and a while and usually i spend $3 a can when i want to, soluckyfor her i may be able to do it more often,

    But thanks again!

  • LabsRawesome

    If you Google “gravy for dogs” there are several brands of gravy
    in pouches that you can add to your dogs kibble.
    Or you could always add some stew type canned foods and a little water to make more gravy.
    If you’re interested in some budget friendly 4 and 5 star
    canned foods, my dogs like these ones-
    4health Tractor Supply .99¢ per can
    Pure Balance canned stews $1
    Kirkland Signature Nature’s Domain
    Costco case of 24 cans $19.99

  • mahoraner niall

    i know that if their was a high quality food that made gravy when wet, that i would feed it to my dog. But sadly i don’t think gravy train will ever get any higher in quality,

    Because i know my dog would love this, but i would never let her near a bowl of this crud, BUT if i saw a wellness or natural balance logo on a food that makes gravy when wet, i would check the ingredients then if they were good, i would definitely get this, since my girl loves wet food as a treat, and if it was a dry kibble like gravy train, she would be able to have it every day

    Well, i guess we have to wait

  • obligatory rant

    I am so sorry to hear about your friend losing her dog. To anyone else who has a pet with allergies, your best and safest bet is to spend the money on the special dog foods for pets with allergies that you can purchase from your vet. Those companies guarantee that only one kind of food or foods is processed at said plant. So yeah while commercial pet foods may state they are not made with or contan a particular ingredient, the food itself may still have been processed at a plant that also processes other foods that your pet may be allergic to, and get contaminated.

  • Denise Van Winkle

    We just recently had to take our Collie off of Gravy Train. Since we put her on it, she’s had recurring utis/bladder infections, and then they stopped responding to the d-mannose(cranberry concentrate) we were giving her. She also started getting a rash all along her underside. Just in a few days after taking her off the Gravy Train, her uti cleared up. We’re hoping the rash will do the same. I have to treat it daily with diluted iodine. It would go away, but come back as soon as I stopped treating it. We switched to Pure Balance, Chicken which while made for Walmart, is rated a 4.5 on this site. No problems so far. We have concluded it was most likely the corn, wheat, and soy making her have the utis, and maybe the rash. If I knew Gravy Train was so bad, I would never have started her on it.

  • mahoraner niall

    completely agree with pitlove
    here are a few of the many similarities
    1 the number one ingredient is CORN CORN CORN!
    2 they have more dyes than meat and veggies ( if they even have any)
    3 has meat/by product from an undefined animal
    4 have artificial flavors
    5 have artificial preservatives
    and probably 1,000,000 more things alike, the only differences i can thing of is that gravy train gets sticky when wet and it isn’t by purina,

  • Pitlove

    this food is almost identical to Beneful

  • Alex Enlow

    We were feeding our two small dogs Beneful which caused them several problems. Our dogs hair got shorter and discolored. They began having seizures and caused one of them to loose a few teeth. We have since changed their dog food to Gravy Train and they are now healthy and energized. They love Gravy Train!

  • èdè Yorùbá Sinsajo

    Although I do not and have never let my dog eat this stuff, I really hope that this dog food company increases the quality of their food.

  • èdè Yorùbá Sinsajo

    This food in my opinion is not good, although I can understand that maybe those that are on a strict budget would consider it. The reason I would not feed my dog this food, nor recommend this food to any dog owners is because it is simply not healthy for any dog at all.
    I could make a five-page list stating everything that is unhealthy for a dog, let alone any animal.
    Firstly, the (core) protein count is only 17%. Whereas the average dog needs to consume at least 25%-45% of protein daily, he is virtually starving of energy from this food. The younger the dog is, the more he is starving of a higher protein diet. Yes, a dog can eat a food that has a protein level of less than 24%, but it is highly recommended that their are other foods he is eating to fill in the missing gaps (unless for rare medical reasons).
    The first ingredients to this food is soy and corn. Most dogs with a food allergy is going to be wheat, corn or soy; followed by grains and chicken. That is why many dog foods (even “Walmart Brands”) are straying away from wheat, soy, and corn in dog foods. If a dog has a food allergy towards any of these ingredients, he will be suffering with itches, hair loss, and odor. Signs of your dog eating grass is the first symptom.
    The food as “meat”, “meat fat”, and “animal fat”. Neither of these specify the type of animal actually being put into your dog’s food. This meat can literally come from ANY type of animal from any source since it is not highly regulated under the USA FDA for pet food. Many dog food companies (especially “cheap” dog food) will put any meat such as wild catches from the woods like, turkey, raccoon, rat, opossums; to any road kill, and even euthanized previous pets. This where the cancer scare is the biggest. Pets that have been put down still have those chemicals in them once they are turned into dog meat. Don’t believe me? I didn’t either, once I’ve looked up these findings myself.
    Other things that are completely unnecessary and added to this dog food is dye coloring, caramel digest, and salt.
    So with that said, I rather be spending more on what you call “nothing” than this stuff. I am glad that your dog is healthy for now, but if I where you, I will consider making a switch soon. I mean, would you even try this stuff yourself?

  • aimee

    I don’t disagree that there is a presence. I’d imagine that vaccine companies pharmaceutical companies etc may all “have a presence”

    One of the vets where I go said they had a Hill’s feeding program where products could be purchased at a discount. She said she did buy discounted food but she didn’t find her dog’s coat did well on it and so she actually dislikes the company. Feeding programs can go both ways I suppose.

  • aimee

    I don’t know that it is different as she said she was not taught by someone from a pet food company and others were.

    I think we can all agree that vets do not get a lot of nutrition education in school but then again that can be said for a lot of disciplines.

    I took this from Dr Remillard’s site in regards to vet student nutrition education ” ~25% still use the free service provide
    by some of the major pet food companies to save money. This number is
    falling because of the negative backlash as you have described …. how
    those students will get their nutritional training if not from the Pet
    food companies veterinarians – is open for now. As for the “one
    nutrition class” in part true because if you look at the curriculum will
    see one or 2 courses named as such in the first or second yrs. Yes the 1
    and 2 yrs nutrition courses are not optional regardless who teaches

    However, nutrition training is not taught as a standalone
    in the 3 and 4 yrs but integrated into the medicine, surgery and
    specialty courses, so not named as such. For example, every two weeks at
    NCSU, the nutrition service meets with 3 yr students to discuss how
    nutrition should be integrated with general practice or medicine
    service. The service meets daily with 4 yr students and discuss how
    nutrition is integrated with the cases they are covering. Occasionally,
    maybe 4 times a yr for an hour over lunch, we will have a pet food
    veterinarian come and speak to the faculty and students about a
    particular product (usually a new one) to discuss the features and
    potential uses of that new product.”

    There is a lot more there and to find it go to and search under veterinary education.

  • Crazy4dogs

    I’m not sure what vet schools your vets went to, but there’s definitely a presence in the schools. While the courses might not be taught by the Big 4, there is a definite “presence”. Here are some links that include feeding programs and events. I realize some are older, but it still shows the presence was there:

    Ross University:

    UCDavis Pet Food Program. Note that the Big 4 are represented:

    Ohio State University feeding program:

    University of Missouri Vet School:

    Iowa State University CVM:

    Hill’s Graduate Feeding Program:

    Here’s a FB page for Massey Vet School in New Zealand:

    Purina offers CE and feeding programs. Just hit the x on the login that pops up and you can read the texts:

    Staff feeding program:

    North Carolina State University Purina feeding program. Question #3 is interesting.

    Purina memory garden @ University of Minnesota:

    Michigan State University CVM:

    Purina Sponsored Event @ University of Illinois CVM:

    This is from 2003, but it’s your own source DVM360:

    I could go on, but I’m seeing a pretty big presence by the dog food companies.

  • Crazy4dogs

    Here’s the Hill’s link which states Mark Morris, Jr. co-authored the book. It’s the last sentence:

  • losul

    Aimee, here is a different perspective, Dr Patty Khuly’s story and experiences;

    just a side note; Hill’s employees actually authored “Small Animal Clinical Nutrition”

  • aimee

    They are out there and nutrition CE is available but, and this is a big but, the end result may not be that different from what it is now.

  • Crazy4dogs

    Well, at least on Beneful the huge photo of corn is correct! But the carrots and parsley, etc come in @ the vitamin pack, so how many carrots would that be?

  • Polo And Cody


    I’m just hoping if anybody is concise ring this dog food I highly suggest not to.
    Earlier this week my friend had a happy healthy golden retriever. No problems and her dog was named Sarah.
    Sarah’s owner (my friend) had a low budget due to her having to buy a new house and all. I told her to try the dollar store for things, I mean it’s definitely not the best quality food but at least she gets something. She told me she saw the pet area in the dollar store. She saw the Gravy Train dog food. She told me that she saw the ingredients and there was no turkey whatsoever ( her dog is allergic to turkey). She caught 3 cans to see if Sarah liked it. I saw her dog wolf it down, it looked like she enjoyed it. No problems then but my friend told me in the middle of the night Sarah was vomiting and having bloody diarrhea. We both rushed to the ER vet and she caught the dog food along with her. The vet said one of Sarah’s kidneys have given out and her lungs sent holding on too well. She had to make the heartbreaking choice of putting her down due to her not being able to pay for surgery. Her vet immediately said,”I will send this to a testing area for you for free to see if there is any at least a small trace of turkey”. He knew because he was her vet before but anyways, my friend was called back into the vets office where she was shown unexpectedly from aloe quality dog food it had a trace of turkey in it. Her dog Sarah had a extreme allergy to turkey, and this dog food company LIEING killed her happy healthy dog. Sarah was only 1 year old. A shame for her to die now.
    I will NEVER recommend this dog food to ANYBODY in this whole world.

  • Pitlove

    agreed. i’ve always been that way, especially in high school days. hopefully some of them DO have passion for dog nutrition and do some CE for it because god knows not enough vets know enough about nutrition

  • Dori

    C4D. The packaging, I believe, is what made Beneful such a big seller. Bright colors, fruits and veggies and all the other ingredients look so yummy. Must be good for them no? NO!!!

  • aimee

    Of the 5 vets there were four different schools represented.

    I’d imagine what the content is of the CE is attended is the vet’s choice.

    Honestly though I’ve never thought much of mandated CE. You can’t force someone to learn for gosh sake. I feel it is an internal drive and passion.

  • Pitlove

    Dori, I agree. I always go down the dog food isle at walmart to check out Pure Balance and I was there the other night with my boyfriend and noticed the Kibbles N Bits bags and just couldnt help but laugh at the sirloin steak and veggies on the front lol. i asked him if he thought people really believed that was in the food and he jokingly goes “you mean its not?!?!”

  • Crazy4dogs

    That’s why I absolutely hate the marketing!!! They make so many things that have no nutritive value to people or dogs look so appealing that’s what sticks in their minds and they blindly purchase based on the advertising. 🙁
    My absolute most despised thing are the commercials that show people laughing, happy, whatever from some drug followed by the long list of disclaimers with all of the ill effects caused by the drug they’re peddling while the ad shows how happy the people are by using it. 🙁

  • Dori

    I’m not always sure whether they are uneducated or don’t bother. Or that all the ad money spent really does sway people into thinking it must be good. When they’re in the grocery store they’ll recall a name of a food during some commercial or other on t.v. and the packaging always looks so nutritious with all the bright colors of ingredients that they buy it. Yeah, maybe uneducated in canine nutrition is correct as you say. I think, unfortunately, pictures and t.v. commercials stick with people when in the grocery store and don’t want to have to shop at a second store for their pets. One stop shopping.

  • Pitlove

    to me it sounds like he/she is uneducated like a lot of people are about dog nutrition (myself included not too long ago). I think people look for the cheapest food and think they are getting a great deal and dont realize exactly what is going into their dogs mouth. I know humans dont always pay attention to what they are ingesting either (not all of course). however, it also seems like his/her lack of education has led her/him to believe that because the dogs health is steady for the moment its a great food.

    I hope that by the time BP figures out that he/she has been poisoning the dog its not too late.

  • Pitlove

    sounds like an excellent school. I know that the one Dr.Becker went to was not as fortunate to have such good education about dog nutrition. It’s nice to know there are schools out there that understand what a conflict of interest it is to be educated by Science Diet and RC.

  • Dori

    Hey C4D. That’s why I asked bp whether it was his breeder or his vet that told him to feed Gravy Train as it seems to never have been answered. I would never ask my traditional vets for answers on nutrition. I don’t even follow veterinarian nutritionists recommendations completely. I’m sure at this point in our research we are way more knowledgeable than they are on appropriate species diets. But I will admit that I will not be performing surgery on any animals any time soon, if ever. So hope I’m never called upon to do so. lol

  • Crazy4dogs

    Hi Dori, I understand your point, but when the comment by BP was made, it sounded as though it was a breeder or vet recommendation. I realize that vets often know nothing about nutrition, some know a bit, some are very knowledgeable and some may be vets who are also nutritionists. I have a group of vets I see and even among the group, their knowledge varies.
    I do feel however that a vet should either have a basic knowledge of dog foods or not make a recommendation.

  • aimee


    I just googled continuing eduction veterinarians.

    Here is a link to a map that tells you how many hours are required for license renewal by state.

    I take my dog to a large multi doctor practice. I’ve individually asked 5 of them about their nutritional training. All were taught by PhD’s and DVMs none of which were affiliated with any pet food company. Only one said she had ever seen a rep from a big company when in school.

  • Pitlove

    you are 100% right but I was more talking about the average vet. There are holistic vets like Dr. Karen Becker who do have dog nutrition education and understand a dogs dietry needs. My vet is great and respects my choice to feed all natural and agrees with the brands I choose to feed.

  • Dori

    bp. So neither the vet nor the breeder advised you to feed Gravy Train. This was your choice of food for your dog?

  • Dori

    el doctor. I agree that there ARE vets who share our passion for feeding our dogs high quality species appropriate diets. Unfortunately, they are few and far between. I think I read somewhere at some point that some veterinary schools are, or maybe just thinking about, requiring more nutritional training for their students. If that nutritional training continues to be sponsored by Purina and the like, then I’m not sure how helpful that will be. I think we all have to take it upon ourselves, which is why a lot of us stumbled onto this site in the first place, to research what is appropriate to feed our animals. Research certainly not solely on this site but read and educate yourself as much as you can and continue that education and make the best choices for your animals and then continue your education. It’s on going. That’s where I think the fault lies in a lot of traditional vets (and doctors for that matter). Once they get out of school and get their license and set up practice they are never required to take any more classes as the medical world and nutritional world continues to change and evolve. There is an awful lot of outdated thinking and facts still out there. I always thought they should all be required to take a certain amount of credits periodically in order to renew their licenses. That’s me just dreaming.

  • Dori

    C4D, you and I are typically in sync with our thinking on these matters but I’m not sure I totally agree with you on this point. He/She may be an excellent veterinarian when it comes to medical issues. That’s why we take our animals to them, for medical help and treatment. Not nutritional help or advice. I’m definitely not saying I agree with any of these horrible foods that are as far from species appropriate as one can get. I’m just saying that I wouldn’t leave a good medical veterinarian solely because they know nothing about nutrition. I don’t discuss nutrition with my dogs primary vet. Don’t forget most vets will tell you to feed Hills, Science Diet, Royal Canin, and whatever other crap they have on their shelves. Think about it, if we were to leave all the vets that recommend garbage for our dogs, which is most of them, we be in trouble medically speaking for our dogs and cats, and whatever other animals we have. I do completely agree with you that if the breeder is recommending Gravy Train because that’s what she’s been feeding her crew all along, I would have turned right around and left and not have gotten a dog from that breeder. I’d be concerned about the health of the sire and dam and any of their litters.

  • Melanie

    Just wait. You’ll see. God bless your dog.

  • el doctor

    Hi Pitlove

    I agree that Vet’s don’t need a lot of nutritional education to become a Vet.

    But there ARE Vets who share our passion for feeding dogs a high quality species appropriate diet. And when you find that Vet you now have someone with A LOT more education in the health and well being of dogs who can also be a GREAT asset for nutritional advice!

    I haven’t come across that many, but I have found a few.

  • Pitlove

    vet’s have little to no education about dog nutrition as they get about 1 week of nutrition classes in vet school, all of which are taught by representives from Hill’s Science Diet, Royal Canin and Purina. None of which are giving unbias nutrition info. They are simply there to attempt to market THEIR brand of food which in order to be convinced to sell their brand they need to convince the students that dogs need the exact opposite diet which they actually need. In turn vet’s only really know how to address certain issues with those particular brands.

    I would not recommended your vet’s nutrition advice unless he has had actual training in dog nutrition beyond vet school.

  • Pitlove

    papers do not mean anything in terms of a health guarentee on YOUR dog. I asked you if you breeder showed you paper work and xrays that show that he has done genetic testing on his Sir and Dam to make sure he is not passing along genetic disorders. I’ve had to work twice as hard with my pits health because I got him from a backyard breeder. I was also told that he was a Razor Edge bloodline American Pitbull Terrier, neither of which he is.

    Also any papers that you have on your dog are not from AKC because bullies are a designer dog and not recognized by AKC and I wouldn’t be impressed by UKC papers at all. UKC is a joke.

  • Crazy4dogs

    Fortunately, we’ve had some storms come in and the temps have come down. Keep cool!

  • Dori

    Ugh! I feel your pain. I’m sitting outside on the patio trying to get a breath of air.

  • Crazy4dogs

    Just because the dogs are kept indoors (thank heavens) does not make a great breeder. Most people, though not all, keep their dogs indoors. Aquariangt is right. A lot of people just breed for profit. Anyone can buy a dog from a “great” line and some irresponsible breeders don’t care if the dog is altered. Unfortunately, that has been the fate of the most popular dog in the U.S, which often ends up in a kill shelter. It also happens to be the 2 dogs that I rescued from kill shelters, the Labrador Retriever. And due to overpopulation and breed stigma, the pit bull/AmStaff is in an even worse situation. Just look at any rescue site. The pit bulls are taking up an overwhelmingly large share of the kill shelter population due to overbreeding. Yeah, a breeder who is feeding puppy chow, dog chow or gravy train is not interested in bettering the breed IMO.

  • LabsRawesome

    Yes. He’s a great breeder tho. lmao.

  • JeremyScott10

    Hello bp….the reason I buy healthy food and come on here to learn is
    because I don’t want to lose another pet to cancer…very devastating to go through. Science has shown disease is largely
    preventable and nutrition is a key factor.

    A young dog generally has
    the vitality to throw off poisons from an unhealthy diet…but in adulthood, the effects of bad nutrition and toxic overload make
    the dog more susceptible to disease.

    You seem like a nice person
    and hopefully the love you have for your dog will go a long way in
    keeping him healthy…exercise helps a lot too. But you may want to explore some budget friendly healthier options at some point 🙂

  • aquariangt

    sadly, papers mean precious little these days.

  • aquariangt

    its been a monsoon all week here. SOME of us need to do some agility so SOME of us can have some respite from their very busy herding dog 😉

  • aquariangt

    unless they are breeding for betterment of the breed, and active in showing and/or performance events, they are essentially a backyard breeder. Many BYB bred dogs have papers as well, that doesn’t mean a ton anymore. I don’t really know any breeders that would stoop to gravy train either. A lot that I know feed stuff I wouldn’t touch, but not quite to this level. Feed what you want, but coming to a dog food review site and after reading how they rate foods (I hope you took the time to do that) trying to convince people that it’s a great food isn’t going to go real far. That’s why I called you a troll before 🙂 You’re likely just trying to stir up an argument

  • Crazy4dogs

    So, the breeder feeds gravy train?

  • bp

    The vet never told me too. The breeder is great! All indoor well taken care of dogs!!

  • bp

    No, I said my breeder says to listen to a vet more than him. my vet never said anything about my dogs diet, because my dog is healthy.

  • Crazy4dogs

    This really isn’t a decent product. A “decent” product would probably be more in the 3 star category, with some actual animal protein and that doesn’t have any ingredient, with the exception of the vitamin pack, listed in red.

  • Crazy4dogs

    Poor Dori! We’re in the midwest with a houseful of guests and since it’s in the 80’s we tried to turn the A/C on. It’s not working because the dogs broke the thermostat line chasing the damn chipmunks this past winter! I saw them going crazy all around the A/C unit, but of course I didn’t realize it until we tried to turn it on and it didn’t work. Outside inspection found broken lines. 🙁

  • Crazy4dogs

    While I have labs, I do know some “bully” people. If they want the dog more muscled they put them on a high protein diet.

  • Crazy4dogs

    Wow! I hope not. If the vet recommends gravy train that’s a vet I’d never use! If it’s the “breeder” that would tell you what kind of “breeder” it is. 🙁

  • Shawna

    BP – are you saying your vet recommends Gravy Train?

  • bp

    She has papers. 2x Remy and sparx. The breeder has a few different diets he recommends, but the vet is who he says to listen too.

  • Pitlove

    did your breeder suggest Gravy Train to you or something? because in order for a dog to be extremely bulky and muscular they need a low carb diet just like a human would, something that as you can see by this review this food is NOT. So basically by overfeeding her and feeding a low quality food you are doing 2 things. Increasing her chance that she will become fat and not “bulky” and increasing her chance of hip dysplasia as this food does not have the proper calcium levels for a large breed dog which is critical for a large to giant breed dog within the first 8 weeks to 8 months of their life. If your dog is older than 8 months you have already missed the window of opportunity to reduce her risk of hip dysplasia, which is common in pits of all varities. If she does develop the disease which can onset very early or late in life you will end up in debt trying to pay for her vet bills for meds, possibly surgery and also physical therapy as it is a crippling disease for dogs. Heres hoping there is no genetic history in the stock from the breeder of hip dysplasia. Did he show you any medical records of the Sir and Dam that your puppy came from?

  • Pitlove

    well I might not own a “bully” but I own an old school AmStaff which need to be lean and muscular they are just not as short and stocky as a bully is. Beefy can mean fat which you do not want for any dog. And by the way just because the bag of food says large breed or small breed it doesn’t mean anything. Small dogs do not need a special diet only made for small dogs as Shawna said. They have the exact same GI tract as a large/giant breed dog including a dog like yours. My AmStaff is 66 lbs of pure muscle and he gets a high quality food that is not full of plant protein fillers. Over time you are probably going to end up paying twice what I’ve paid for food because your dog has to eat so much more to actually feel full and get any type of nutritional value from the food.

    There is such a thing as species appropriate food for dogs and cats, which are both carnivores. Cats are obligate carnivores and dogs are scavenging carnivores meaning that a cat can die without meat and a dog NEEDS a diet that is MAJORITY meat. Your dog is not getting a species appropiate diet no matter how you want to spin it and no matter how great your dog is and how well-behaved she is (something we never questioned in the first place). You are getting what you pay for with Gravy Train and again to RESTATE what Shawna said, disease does not happen over night. Your dog my look and appear healthy now, but all you are doing for her is allowing her to survive NOT thrive which is the ultimate goal. Sure your dog can live on Gravy Train and appear to be happy and healthy but I promise you you will end up at the vet twice as much as all of us and paying twice as much for food over your lifetime as all of us.

    If you ever want a proper understanding of the dietary needs of a dog (not a bully breed since a bully is still first and foremost a dog just like any other) feel free to start a thread on the forums asking for help. I hope for the sake of your dog that you take my advice soon.

  • Dori

    OH! I thought you were kidding about aimee and Gravy Train. You weren’t. Uh Oh! Here I go again….LMAO while ROTF.

  • Dori

    You guys are all on a roll today. LMAO …… ROTFLMAO too! Loving the laughs. Been dealing with air conditioner issues today and no one figuring out what the issue is. That’s no fun in the South.

  • LabsRawesome

    “Top notch” backyard breeder. lol. You kill me!! 🙂

  • Crazy4dogs

    I can’t wait for that one! 🙂

  • losul


    All aboard the gravy train! Chugga chugga, toot toot. Next stop Ken-L Ration Station!!!

    Oops sorry Aimee, just having a little fun!

  • Bobby dog

    Edit: Love the pic!

  • LabsRawesome

    Great nutrition? From Gravy Train and Pedigree? You are seriously living in a fantasy world.

  • LabsRawesome

    Yes, Gravy Train is magically better than the ingredients used to make it.

  • LabsRawesome


  • LabsRawesome


  • Bobby dog

    LOL Losul, Aimee is too busy trying to parallel park the Purina tour bus to board the Gravy Train!

  • Crazy4dogs

    LOL! No! She wouldn’t, would she?

  • Shawna

    I’m very glad that she is healthy. That’s all we can ask for. My Chihuahua ate a high protein raw diet and passed away earlier this year of old age. She was 19 and had no ailments, not even arthritis. She didn’t shed, never had to worry about fleas or ticks (so didn’t have to medicate her – actually seven out of my eight dogs never had to be medicated for fleas. The eighth wasn’t as healthy and does get fleas once in a while). 🙁

    My favorite vet, Dr. Karen Becker, and dog food advocate is a bully mom. She feeds her dogs the two bully’s, her Boston Terrier (recently passed of old age) her Dachshund and her Rottie (passed several years ago) all the same diet — high protein raw.

    It’s obvious that you love your girl and that you have her best interest at heart. We will have to agree to disagree on what the best foods are but that’s okay. 🙂 I hope your girl remains healthy and happy for a very very long time!!!

  • bp

    My bully is more cut, but she is pretty bulky as well, the breeder thought my how to do this. You feed her a lot, make sure she gets her nutrition. But that does not need to be from her base food. Look at it as you rice I guess is my best analogy. She has everything she needs. She is super healthy.

  • Shawna

    If you actually look at foods formulated for small dogs, they have MORE protein in them than the foods formulated for giant breed dogs. That said, a Chihuahua’s digestive tract is identical to a Great Dane’s. They don’t require different foods. The Chihuahua just simply eats less.

    Protein, amino acids actually, are what muscle is made from. Bully’s are supposed to be muscular, not just bulky, so they should eat a diet with good amounts of high quality protein — soybean meal is not high quality protein.

    For what it’s worth, my friends Newfie eats the same diet my Pomeranian eats only the Newf eats more of the food. My other friends Pitt Bull also eats the same food as my Pom — eats more than my Pom but less than the other friends Newf. Each time you post it becomes more and more evident that you really have no idea what you are talking about. That wasn’t meant as an insult as we are all at different learning stages but I do hope that you at least consider some of the things that have been discussed here. Disease does not happen overnight. Cancer doesn’t just pop up. It takes time to develop before the symptoms become evident. Another example — the kidneys are already about 70% damaged before blood work can identify a problem (and before symptoms start). By this time it is too late to do anything about it and kidney disease is an expensive disease to manage.

  • bp

    Yes, some dog foods are for small dogs, some are for big dogs, some are for just whatever. But for a bully, this is a great diet. Especially if you add salmon oil. Which I also do, for her coat. She eats a lot to stay beefy, she would not eat less of the expensive food, she would eat the same and get fat!!! Talk to any bully person, the can explain this. Bye bye, now.

  • Shawna

    The FDA found the drug in this food so yeah I do know that the company is willing to use the bottom of the barrel ingredients in this food.

    I’m not sure what you mean when you say some foods aren’t made for my dog?

    I would definitely agree that cost is not always an indicator of quality, there’s usually some parallel but not always. What IS a good indicator, at least a first step, is the ingredient list. When corn or soy is the first ingredient, here’s your sign.

    One thing you will find if you give it a chance, the better the quality of the ingredients, the less you feed. They eat less, you buy less and even though the bag costs a bit more, the cost per serving is less.

    What you feed your dog is your business but if you don’t want criticism from others, it might be wise to not come on a dog food rating site and start throwing around words like yuppie and snob about people who choose to feed foods with better ingredients.

  • bp

    This is my last response. I’m over it. My dog is healthy, loved and we’ll behaved. So far gravy train has been good to us both. If you don’t believe it, don’t use it. All you can do with ANY dog food is take the company’s word. Your guess is as good as mine for ANY OF THESE PLACES. But just because it costs more doesn’t mean it’s any better!!! They may also contain “euthanasia”. I don’t know, neither do you!! Some foods aren’t made for my dog. She needs to eat sort of a lot. This is what I think works for her. And I have not been proven wrong!!!

  • Shawna

    You understand the people, yes the yuppie snobs but also the others, on this site are more than capable of reading an ingredient list. It doesn’t take much of a genius to know that beef and turkey are better foods for our dogs than corn and soybean meal. But yes, soybean meal DEFINITELY IS more affordable than meat so……

    A little euthanasia drug, for flavoring or whatever, certainly has never caused any long term harm.. I have to wonder why they haven’t allowed that in human foods yet?

  • aquariangt

    I’m sure she’ll respond soon saying that it’s a viable choice.

  • bp

    Well, gravy train as a dry food, is sort of like filler. Or at least that is how I see it. The nutrients in the dry food are sort of “eeeeh”… But if you add gravy train can food too it, or pedigree, as I do, my dog fills up and gets great nutrition! Also, I like to give her vitabone, and other healthy treats.

  • Dog_Obsessed

    Does the way you use it make it different? How?

  • bp

    I dont understand people. This is a decent product. And a better product line! Its no blue buffalo! But my dog isn’t going to eat too much better than I do!!

  • bp

    I use it. And alone, I would give it 2.5 stars. But used how I use it, 4.5.

  • losul

    Peace brother bp!

    Us old hippies really aren’t all that bad.

    P.S. I think your reviews got Aimee aboard the Gravy Train woohoo! Hope she can still find a bag tonight!!

  • Dog_Obsessed

    What is your reasoning behind this that is different from the 1-star review above?

  • bp

    You are correct! 🙂 but, this is not a bad dog food.

  • bp

    Thank you. I’ll tell ya, they love it. Mix hot water, with hard food and it becomes gravy, mix canned meat in with it. It’s super affordable and your dog will love it!!!! Also, vitabones are awesome treats! Affordable and have a ton of benefits. Most of these expensive foods are just as bad, if not worse. Nobody really regulates them, so nobody really knows. Not these hippies here especially!

  • Dog_Obsessed

    I don’t know enough about the specifics of human food to make any claim here, but I just wanted to say that just because we eat that stuff doesn’t automatically make it healthy or fit for consumption of any animal.

  • Crazy4dogs


  • aimee

    Hi bp,

    Thanks for posting on how your dogs are doing on Gravy Train.

  • Pitlove

    well considering that dog food like Gravy Train etc is made from the run off from the human food industry (meaning food that was useless to the human food industry and deemed not fit for human consumption) I’m gonna have to say that our food is well A LOT better than Gravy Train. Promise you that no matter how much wood pulp is in a burger at McDonalds you don’t have to also worry about it containing your next door neighbors dog that got enthanized from having cancer. That is however something you DO have to worry about with foods like Gravy Train.

  • Crazy4dogs

    Well, let’s hope your dog doesn’t look like the beaten, abandoned and otherwise abused dogs that they show in the ASPCA commercial. There’s no bragging in that.

  • Crazy4dogs


  • Crazy4dogs

    I’m not a yuppie snob, not a vegetarian. I’ve done my research and am aware of all the junk in processed foods. So, I really don’t eat a lot of processed foods. I grow and make a lot of my own food.
    My dogs also only eat as minimally processed food as I can afford. I’m not wealthy either.
    Sorry to burst your bubble of misconception.
    Edit: My dogs have never eaten gravy train or any other terrible food.

  • Shawna

    I LOVE bullies – grew up with a Staffordshire Bull Terrier and plan to have another one day. Something funny about bully owners I’ve noticed, they, with exceptions of course, feed horrible foods.

    Gravy Train IS horrible and I hope you will give me the opportunity to explain why? There are three ingredients in the food that I’d like to discuss. They are “meat and bone meal”, “animal fat” and “animal digest”.

    The FDA states that these three ingredients (and beef and bone meal) are ingredients KNOWN to be contaminated with the euthanasia drug pentobarbital. From the FDA’s website —
    “There appear to be associations between rendered or hydrolyzed
    ingredients and the presence of pentobarbital in dog food. The
    ingredients Meat and Bone Meal (MBM), Beef and Bone Meal (BBM), Animal
    Fat (AF), and Animal Digest (AD) are rendered or hydrolyzed from animal
    sources that could include euthanized animals.”

    These tests were done in 2001 but at that time Gravy Train WAS a food contaminated with pento per the FDA’s website

    They were using poor quality ingredients back then and although they have changed from beef and bone meal to meat and bone meal — it is still a possible contaminant and likely an inferior ingredient to even beef and bone meal.

    For the record, the FDA says this small amount of pento in dog foods is not harmful to them but the US Fish & Wildlife Service disagrees and calls pento contaminated animals used in feed a “poison”.

    “Rendering is not an acceptable way to dispose of a pentobarbital-tainted carcass. The drug residues are not destroyed in the rendering process, so the tissues and by-products may contain poison and must not be used for animal feed….

    All pentobarbital-euthanized carcasses should be prominently tagged with one or more highly-visible “POISON” warning labels. Bagged animals should have a label affixed to the carcass itself and also attached to the outside of the bag.”

    Not wanting to feed my dogs a food potentially contaminated with poison, or other inappropriate ingredients, does not make me a “snob”.

  • bp

    I am not trolling. And my dog is healthy. She does not look like those dogs on the Sarah McLachlan commercials or anything! My dog is loved! The breeder is a good one. And I stand behind Gravy Train. The minute she looses hair, smells, looks, or acts unhealthy, I will humbly apologize and ask for knowledge. But as far as I am concerned, she isn’t gassy, poop is a good consistency, and she is completely rad.

  • LabsRawesome

    Maybe he eats School lunches. LOL

  • aquariangt

    That’s just ill informed. Not that I advocate eating fast food regularly (which is what your dog is doing, not “from time to time”) but human fast food-while essentially nutritionally worthless-can in no way be compared to the danger of feeding the low quality junk dog food every day. Let’s look at the biggest example shall we?

    The McDonald’s Big Mac.

    Bread: It’s completely processed and doesn’t mold, certainly has some junky preservatives.
    Beef: Yes, beef. Bad beef, but still beef. Why? Because it is absolutely illegal to call it that unless it has a certain % of actual beef, not ground fat or other filler ingredients.
    Cheese: American cheese. processed to hell and back, but still cheese, or it would have to be called something else.
    Pickles: I assume GMO laden cucumbers were used to produce, but cucumbers none the less.
    Lettuce: See above
    Whatever weird sauce it is: See above

    Not much good in there, true. HOWEVER, all tested and fit for consumption. A company that big would never be able to get away with lying, or not testing. In fact, I’ve seen the facilities used to produce mcdonalds French fries, it’s immaculate.

    Let’s compare to the first 5 ingredients in gravy train. I used beefy classic because it is the first one on the website.

    Corn: potentially useful, not to dogs in my opinion, but there is plenty of debate on that. I won’t go into the corn vs meat debate because that’s not the discussion
    Soybean Meal: Why bother with something like that? Nutritionally empty filler
    Meat and Bone Meal: This is where the biggest difference is coming in. This includes poisoned animals, roadkill, really anything they want, and does NOT have to be fit for human consumption. Tell me what food you ate recently that included anything of this sort? Animal regulations aren’t the same, have some semblance of education before arguing.
    Wheat Middlings: probably the leftovers of your big mac bun
    Animal Fat: What kind of animal? Not the ones im eating

    Really the point of this, besides the fact that you’re probably a troll, is that you are A feeding your dog junk every meal, as opposed to an occasional snack and B. You’re trying to compare something very tightly regulated and under constant radar, to something that doesn’t have anywhere near the same regulations in place. I’m NOT a vegetarian. I don’t consider myself a yuppy, but I suppose if your definition of yuppy is someone who pays attention to what they eat, so be it. I’m a bit young to be in the yuppy group though 😉

    I don’t believe your breeder is respected, by the by 🙂 And again, I assume you’re trolling here, but good luck

    Edit: Paragraph separations

  • bp

    So is yours! If you ever eat fast food, corn chips, or really any processed foods! Do your research. And you will probably fire back with; “oh, I don’t eat any of that garbage.” Or “I’m a vegetarian.” Or some yuppie snob crap like that. But, I know and you know, you have, and probably still do from time to time at least.

  • Crazy4dogs

    I’m sorry for you if you’re food is only slightly better than gravy train.

  • LabsRawesome


  • bp

    Haha queer

  • LabsRawesome


  • bp

    Actually he is a very well respected breeder. All Remyline, I got a beautiful dog off of him. My dog is very spoiled, she eats Gravy Train soft food at night and Gravy Train Hard Food all day. Not to mention, all her treats are high in vitamins. And no, it does not bother at all, where her food comes from. Our food is not much better.

  • Pitlove

    sounds like you found a really top notch back yard breeder. sad but thats usually the case with people who breed any type of pitbull. the breeder I got mine from was also feeding Dog Chow. GL with your choice of food though. Does it bother you that your dog is eating toxic chemicals and ground up waste off the slaughterhouse floor? Oh and not to mention the chemicals used to euthanize cats and dogs that are found in the “meat and bone meal” found in this food.

  • Crazy4dogs

    This is just a terrible food. While you would be hard pressed to find any decent food for this cheap, there are many foods slightly higher priced that are wonderful foods. If you actually did a test by feeding better food, you would feed less, your dog’s coat would be softer and shinier and the “doggy” smell that many think is normal would be much improved. The poop pickup would be a lot less too because the dog would be eating things it could actually digest.
    I don’t drive a prius, don’t watch south park and don’t do the rest.

  • bp

    I bet, my dog is EVERY bit as healthy, smart, and we’ll behaved as any other dog you are able to find me. And she eats gravytrain. The breeder I got her from only has top notch dogs, he feeds them all dog chow. So yeah, if you spend $40.00 on a bag of food for your dog, you probably drive a Prius and sniff your own farts, just like the south park episode.

  • Pitlove

    what is a “dog snob”? Someone who cares enough about their dog to not walk into Walmart, close their eyes in the dog food isle and buy the first bag of garbage they grab?

    You are feeding your poor bully pit ( I am a PROUD AmStaff owner and avide lover of all pitbull breeds) some of the most toxic waste filled food on the market and you are condeming people who painstakingly research proper dog diets? Please explain to me how you can justify such a backwards statement.

  • Norine Perry

    i feed this to my dog every day she will not eat the so called name brands for ex she hates alpo, pedigree, and i eaven went so far as to go to petsmart she would not touch it but one thing i can say about cheap dog food is every dog has a different reaction to them. ever pet makes her sick and gives her very bad gass. but i know people who have fed that stuff to there dogs for years and the dogs are fine.

  • bp

    I feed my dog gravy train everyday! She is a beautiful healthy bully! She loves gravy train!! I give her treats as well! She is NOT unhealthy by any means. People are just dog snobs and have the money to spend on nothing.

  • LabsRawesome

    Aw poor Jellybean. If you ate garbage you’d probably puke too. Some budget foods you can get at Walmart are Pure Balance canned and dry, Rachel Ray Zero grain, Evolve dry and canned. Tractor Supply has 4health canned and dry.

  • Jack Russell

    I use gravy train for my Jack Russell when I’m low on funds. Will let me say I will not be feeding him this anymore. The first day I fed this new bag to him he threw up. I just thought Maybe he got overly excited, running chasing the kids and over ate. Well sad to say this bag of food is the source of my baby Jellybean vomiting. Definitely never buying him this again. Wasn’t planning on cleaning up vomit when I got off work.

  • Azaraith

    A part of being a good or bad owner is what you feed your dog… I’d be fat and unhealthy if all I ate was cheese fries and your dog would be unhealthy and probably fat if all it eats is this. It’s edible, but hardly good for the dog.

  • LabsRawesome

    Your first hint that Gravy Train is not a good food should be the fact that its called “Beef flavor”. I guarantee theres no actual Beef in it. Just corn “flavored beef”.

  • Cyndi

    I already knew what the ingredients were HDM…..crap! 🙂

  • Cyndi

    You’re going to feed your dog a “food” where the 4th ingredient is wheat middlings which is crap swept up off the floor AND that “food” contains euthanized pets including the drug that euthanizes them, yet you’re going to call other people “bad dog owners”????

  • Hound Dog Mom

    Hmm. This says unable to locate product data. Looks like all the ingredients and nutrient panel is listed right on the Gravy Train website:

  • D Rock Shock

    I just bought some gravy train dog food and have always used it. Don’t blame the dog food for killing your pets that’s a sad excuse for being a bad dog owner.

  • Kortlin Shelby Hann

    Maybe throwing it in dirt made it taste better!

  • A lady left a bag of gravy train wavy bacon flavor dog snacks in a yoga class. She claimed her little dog ate part of one treat and refused to eat anymore. I looked at the exp date and it is 06/12/15, told the others I would take it home and check it out online. I’m on the ‘recall’ list. I see nothing negative about the dog snacks and gave my 38# 6 y.o. one bacon. Has anyone out there heard any negativity on Gravy Train dog snacks?

  • Chi

    My bulldog ate some Gravy Train by mistake at a friend’s house and same thing — red runs, my son freaked out because he thought the dog was pooping blood. Very frightening!

  • bernard

    I’VE BEEN BUYING gravy train for my dog forever,;was a shock to me when i got a bag last week,it was a bag of of ground up dust,,it really looked like something a person swept off the floor and bagged it ;and i was the lucky guy to buy it.was going to take it back;;but to far where i got it;my dog wasn’t to pleased over it//and i also.

  • Patty

    I have had many dogs over the years 2 lived to be 18 years old one 14 and I now have a 14 year old retriever who is still going strong. I also have other dogs younger, I just want you to no I have always fed Gravy Train an my dogs have always been very healthy. Thank You for years of very happy dogs!

  • jaredsi

    Fed multiple dogs for many years on Gravy Train and never had an issue.

  • Pattyvaughn

    What’s really funny is my mom knows nothing about dogs or dog food, but when I was a kid and wanted to get my dog the food with the gravy, my mom always said we weren’t giving our dog that garbage. She is wicked at interpretting advertising!

  • Cyndi

    & they had the cool commercials too! Lol! We used to feed my dog this too, when I was little.

  • NGH144

    I fed Gravy Train to my two German Shepherds for 16 years and never had any health problems with either of them. The only reason I had to put the to sleep is because of degenerative spinal column disease.

  • Jessica

    I bought gravy train for my dog due to the great price and the packaging showing how great and well recommended the product was. And I regret purchasing it my dog became very very sick puking the food up as well as waking up to swollen eyes. I’m ashamed to have put my dog through this and am even more disgusted that they would continue to make and sell their product that does this to dogs. Gravy train even has to warn you on their very own web page that their product causes problems. Please do not buy this product or put your dog through the troubles.

  • Hound Dog Mom

    When I was a kid and had my shepherd once in awhile my mom would let me pick out her food – I loved to get her Gravy Train because I thought it was so fun to mix in hot water and get “gravy”. Little did I know…

  • Hound Dog Mom

    Why don’t you use a quality canned food? I’m sure you could find one your dog likes just as much. There are some very reasonably priced quality canned foods that run $1 or less per can – 4Health (Tractor Supply), Kirkland Cuts and Gravy (Costco) and Pure Balance (WalMart).

  • Jon

    I use the “food” inside the cans as a way to get one of my dogs to eat a different brand of dry dog food. His jaw isn’t as strong as it used to be because of an accident so I use this to trick it into eating his normal food along with something that he apparently likes.

  • Dog Food Ninja

    topic of discussion: Which is more humane? Feeding your dog this this “food” over the course of his life, or spending an afternoon punching him in the neck? Discuss. But, seriously, this stuff as well as kibbles n bits and Beneful deserve their own category called “terrifying garbage”. As well as all of those store brand foods like Everpet and Sunshine. I cannot fathom how the developers of these “foods” sleep at night.

  • Papa to Keisha

    This quality dog food is proudly sold in bulk at your nearest Dollar Store.

  • BBR3

    I second that. So many people think you can ONLY feed dog food every single day and that every single meal must be balanced. Do what Labs said to do or boil/cook some chicken or other meat for your dog–they’ll love it!

  • BBR3

    I know someone who fed this to his dog for years. That dog had horrible health problems, including the fatty lumps you mentioned. She had oozing sores, tumors, she stunk. Poor thing suffered so much before she died. This food is junk.

  • LabsRawesome

    If you ever run out of dog food again, I would suggest just scrambling up some eggs and throwing in some sardines or tuna. Until you can go to a store that has better dog foods.

  • ashleebabee2308

    We fed this to my dog everyday. She lived to be 13 years old, though now I’m wondering if this is what caused her so many issues toward the end of her life. She was a black dog who developed a lot of fatty lumps and large, weird moles, which our vet said was from the sun, as she was a black dog. She never had any issues besides that though and this is the only food we fed her for the whole 13-14 years of her life.

  • Buyyaclue

    I have a “Gravy Train” story. One day I was running late for work and gave my son some money and told him to buy some dog food at the corner store to hold the dogs over and I would stop at the pet store for their regular food on the way home. I got a call at work from my kids, “Mom, You better get home fast.” I asked why and my son said, he bought the dogs Gravy Train and now the entire kitchen looked all red from the red runs they had. I rushed home and the poor dogs crapped a river of red gravy all over the kitchen. It was one of the most smelley disgusting things I have ever had to clean up. Poor dogs and my son felt terrible but that is all they sold.

  • beaglemom

    LOL. I don’t see how this poisoned corn even gets a “1”. I think it needs to be placed in a “<1" category.

  • LabsRawesome


  • Pattyvaughn

    Add the blue to the yellow and your dog gets superpowers from the nuclear waste.

  • dont forget the blue #2, it has the antioxidants like blueberries and acai.

  • Pattyvaughn

    I believe it’s the other way around, but I don’t think it matters to the dog which color you poison it with.

  • losul

    Are the red colors the garbage and the yellow colors the poisons, or the other way around? At least with kibbles and bits, you know you are getting kibbles of garbage and bits of poisons, haha.

  • LabsRawesome

    Jack, you are too funny. Beef & Chicken “flavor” is all you are getting, as there is no actual meat in Gravy Train. lol What’s not funny is their are dogs out there that eat this “food” (term used loosely) on a daily basis. 🙁

  • isyourcaronfire

    I plan to feed this to my dogs permanently. On a side note, I plan to budget an insane amount of money to pay for their future vet bills as well.

  • isyourcaronfire

    Trust me, you’re getting a full balance of garbage and poisons with this whether you rotate the two or not.

  • its important to rotate between the beef and chicken flavored gravy trains to maintain a balanced diet.

  • Pattyvaughn

    Yuck, just yuck.