Hill’s Prescription Diet D/D Canine (Dry)


Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆

Hill’s Prescription Diet D/D Canine Dog Food is not rated due to its intentional therapeutic design.

The Hill’s Prescription Diet D/D Canine product line includes three dry recipes, each designed to help in the treatment of food sensitivities that can cause skin or digestive issues.

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

  • Hill’s Prescription Diet D/D Canine Potato and Duck
  • Hill’s Prescription Diet D/D Canine Potato and Salmon
  • Hill’s Prescription Diet D/D Canine Potato and Venison

Hill’s Prescription Diet D/D Canine Potato and Duck was selected to represent the other products in the line for this review.

Hill's Prescription Diet D/D Canine Potato and Duck

Dry Dog Food

Estimated Dry Matter Nutrient Content

Protein = 18% | Fat = 16% | Carbs = 58%

Ingredients: Potatoes, potato starch, duck, potato protein, pork fat, soybean oil, pork flavor, dicalcium phosphate, lactic acid, fish oil, potassium chloride, powdered cellulose, iodized salt, calcium carbonate, duck meal, choline chloride, vitamins (vitamin E supplement, l-ascorbyl-2-polyphosphate (source of vitamin C), niacin supplement, thiamine mononitrate, vitamin A supplement, calcium pantothenate, vitamin B12 supplement, pyridoxine hydrochloride, riboflavin supplement, biotin, folic acid, vitamin D3 supplement), dl-methionine, taurine, minerals (ferrous sulfate, zinc oxide, copper sulfate, manganous oxide, calcium iodate, sodium selenite), l-tryptophan, mixed tocopherols for freshness, natural flavors, beta-carotene

Fiber (estimated dry matter content) = 1.7%

Red items indicate controversial ingredients

Estimated Nutrient Content
Guaranteed Analysis18%16%NA
Dry Matter Basis18%16%58%
Calorie Weighted Basis16%35%50%
Protein = 16% | Fat = 35% | Carbs = 50%

The first ingredient in this dog food is potato. Potatoes can be considered a gluten-free source of digestible carbohydrates. Yet with the exception of perhaps their caloric content, potatoes are of only modest nutritional value to a dog.

The second ingredient is potato starch. Potato starch is a gluten-free carbohydrate of only modest nutritional value to a dog.

The third ingredient is duck. Although it is a quality item, raw duck 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 fourth ingredient is potato protein, the dry residue remaining after removing the starchy part of a potato.

Even though it contains over 80% 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 pork fat, a product from rendering pig meat.

Commonly known as lard, pork fat can add significant flavor to any dog food. And it can be high in linoleic acid, an omega-6 fatty acid essential for life.

Although it may not sound very appetizing, pork fat (in moderate amounts) is actually an acceptable pet food ingredient.

The sixth ingredient is soybean oil, which is red flagged here only due to its rumored (yet unlikely) link to canine food allergies.

However, since soybean oil is high in omega-6 fatty acids and contains no omega-3’s, it’s considered less nutritious than flaxseed oil or a named animal fat.

After the pork flavor, we find dicalcium phosphate, likely used here as a dietary calcium supplement.

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, this recipe includes fish oil. Fish oil is naturally rich in the prized EPA and DHA type of omega-3 fatty acids. These two high quality fats boast the highest bio-availability to dogs and humans.

Depending on its level of freshness and purity, fish oil should be considered a commendable addition.

Next, powdered cellulose is a non-digestible plant fiber usually made from the by-products of vegetable processing. Except for the usual benefits of fiber, powdered cellulose provides no nutritional value to a dog.

In addition, we find duck meal. Duck meal is considered a meat concentrate and contains nearly 300% more protein than fresh duck.

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

And lastly, 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.

Hill’s Prescription Diet D/D Canine Dog Food
The Bottom Line

Although this is a prescription product, our review has nothing to do with the accuracy of claims made by the manufacturer as to the product’s ability to treat or cure a specific health condition.

So, to find out whether or not this dog food is appropriate for your particular pet, it’s important to consult your veterinarian.

With that understanding…

Judging by its ingredients alone, Hill’s Prescription Diet D/D Canine appears to be a average dry product.

But ingredient quality by itself cannot tell the whole story. We still prefer to estimate the product’s meat content before concluding our report.

The dashboard displays a dry matter protein reading of 18%, a fat level of 16% and estimated carbohydrates of about 58%.

As a group, the brand features an average protein content of 18% and a mean fat level of 16%. Together, these figures suggest a carbohydrate content of 58% for the overall product line.

And a fat-to-protein ratio of about 88%.

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

When you consider the protein-boosting effect of the potato protein, this looks like the profile of a kibble containing a limited amount of meat.

Bottom line?

Hill’s Prescription Diet D/D Canine is a plant-based dry dog food using a limited amount of named meats as its main sources of animal protein.

Hill’s Prescription Diet 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.

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A Final Word

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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.

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

Notes and Updates

12/13/2016 Last Update

  • disqus_SBl7sCuYS7

    Sad, when people resort to name calling and hostility….just because you don’t agree with their opinions.
    I guess the moderators don’t care?
    Oh, well. Back to my ignore button 🙂

  • disqus_SBl7sCuYS7

    Once someone attempts to flame me, I then ignore their posts, as it is their goal to get you to react.
    It’s frustrating enough to see incorrect information. LOL
    I hope folks realize they are just opinions vs facts.

  • Veronika

    Wow Susan that almost made me cry, I don’t know why the facts are so hard to see, they are very easy to find you need only want to, surely thinking about it you realise that a dry processed kibble won’t help with cancer I mean come on people!

    I too hope they find the light in the future the real one, not the fake one from a lamp post, as that’s what I see happening here.
    For anyone reading this I’m sorry if you believe Skeptvet or find him bible worthy, but that’s simply not the case I went onto his Facebook page and he was anything but worthy of anyone’s attention, specially those of us who want the best for our pets.
    Maybe some day he’ll see or he won’t ever, I can only hope he does.

  • Pitlove

    Hey Aimee-

    According to a post “Veronika” made not too long ago, she has both of us blocked on disqus haha. Apparently, she can not stand either one of us! So I guess she will never see your post. Her loss!

    I would guess that Karen Becker and Rodney Habib haven’t mentioned any of these studies for several reasons. Karen Becker does not strike me as someone who follows current research from credible sources, so she may have not even come upon that study. I’d be interested in her thoughts if she DID read it. And unfortuntely given that Rodney Habib has zero training in nutrition or credentials as a veterinary professional he is likely just regurgitating the same poor information he gets from Karen Becker and friends. My guess is he has not seen this study either.

  • Susan

    Hi, anyone that has a dog or knows someone with a dog with cancer, please do your research, here’s a good place to start…
    “The Dog Survival Series”
    Ketopets started rescuing dogs on death row in pounds, Ketopets rescues dying dogs with cancer, the results will shock you, unbelievable results, it all starts with the dogs diet, now these dogs are looking for new homes, people to adopt them, these survivors & have fought cancer & won…. True Survivors….It all starts with your dogs diet…
    Why hasn’t Hills put their money into this type of research like Ketopets have done & make healthy wet food vet diets??

  • Susan

    To Disqus, _SB17sCuYS7, (the Stalker)
    We are talking about old dogs dying from cancer they already have cancer… Why in the world would you put ur dog on a vet diet that’s is high in carbs, when your dog has cancer ?? I did this 2009 I hate my self, stupid me for listening to my vet, back 2008 there wasn’t any of the info like today… My Angie (BOXER) 9 yrs old had high grade 3 Mast Cell Tumors all removed TO LATE another stupid vet said the lumps on the back of her leg were old lady warts they’re OK, just leave them… Angie was eating chicken & boiled rice but Angie was pooing BLOOD & Vomiting blood, I went back to the RSPCA vet he asked do you want top put her to sleep I wish I did cause she just suffered another 6mths so he recommended we do further testing thru Endoscope I thought this specialist vet would know what to do for my Ang & do the best for her he said take her home & feed her this crap Hills Z/D kibble a dry hard processed kibble, gave her Steriods & Carafate…… I put her too sleep, 4 months later she was nilly 10yrs old in excellent condition the vet said that came to my house to PTS, now I have Patch I realized it would have been stomach ulcers from the Mast Cell Tumors that’s why the first vet from RSPCA recommended having the Endoscope but they didn’t have the Endoscope machine… the Hills Vet Diet Z/d made her worse crying & crying after eating it, I told the vet that prescribed the Hills Z/d , what’s happening, do you know what he said, she spoilt, Angie is spoilt & wanting my attention, Angie wasn’t that type of dog whinge for attention like Patch does, she was in bad pain couldn’t digest the Z/D vet diet….
    Have you looked at all the studies Rodney Habib has posted on his f/b site about cancer??read them you might learn something about carbs & cancer & what happens when you stop all carbs with dogs who have cancer, I bet you when one of your 2 dogs gets cancer you will NOT feed a vet diet so why tell people that come on here that were like me & didn’t know what to do to feed these high carb diets?? putting up your stupid links to ur SkeptVet, you’ll walk it one day….& then I bet you’ll be like me & try & help people & show them there’s better foods out there then a vet diet that’s high in carbs… https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/b25ff1e8dff2ce2375592e93a1aca29be91d11c69e85c172429f733fc84ecf20.jpg

  • aimee

    Hi Veronika,

    Here is an excerpt from a veterinary nutritionist in regard to low carb diets and cancer.

    “And the low carb control diet had absolutely no influence on cancer progression relative to expected outcomes. Again, feeding a low
    carbohydrate diet alone made no difference in disease free interval or
    survival time in these dogs with lymphoma. Yes, cancer cells utilize
    blood sugar (glucose) more rapidly
    than the surrounding normal cells, but this happens whether the
    individual consumes carbohydrates directly in their diet or if the blood
    glucose is produced from glycogen (a type of carbohydrate stored in the
    muscle and liver) or from gluconeogenesis (production of glucose in the
    liver) from metabolism of fatty acids and amino acids (building blocks
    of protein). The body of an adult, non-reproducing, non-lactating animal
    is very good at maintaining blood sugar levels, even when fed a
    carb-free diet.

    Additionally, there is not a single veterinary study
    that has demonstrated that dogs or cats fed low to no carbohydrate diets
    have less cancer incidence than dog or cats fed moderate to high
    carbohydrate diets. Not that I am advocating that dogs and cats should
    be fed lots of starches and simple sugars, I just don’t want people to
    wave the cancer prevention/treatment flag when touting the “benefit” of a
    carbohydrate-free diet.”


    There are very few studies on diet composition and cancer and like all studies they are flawed. Bertone 2003 reported a higher squamous cell carcinoma cancer rate in cats on canned vs dry diet ( in general canned foods are overall lower in carbs than dry diets)and Perez et al 1998 reported higher mammary cancer rates in dogs on homemade over commercial foods and diets high in red meat. “intake of homemade meals (compared to that of commercial foods) was also
    significantly related to a higher incidence of tumors and dysplasias.
    Other significant risk factors were a high intake of red meat,
    especially beef and pork, and a low intake of chicken.”

    It is interesting to me that Rodney Habib and Karen Becker never discuss these studies.

  • disqus_SBl7sCuYS7

    I hope this site helps someone and clears up some of the misinformation out there.
    excerpt from article below:
    “In the face of the ubiquitous unreliable information from holistic vets such as these, it can be hard to sort out which information is truly useful. Here are some resources that are a good bit more trustworthy”.
    “Veterinary Cancer Society (This group also has a tool for finding a board-certified veterinary cancer specialist.) Here are some of the links the VCS recommends:”
    Click on link for the list and full article.

  • Susan
  • Veronika

    I love reading your comments, your seriously my favourite poster just going to get that out there 😀

    Anyways I hope your right with the vets, we need to move away from all this old outdated info and onto greener pastures, hopefully it will be in my lifetime, I guess only time will tell.

    I remember on Rodney’s website or pet fooled I can’t remember which someone said that they had told vets about the cancer diet the raw one and the vets said they can’t tell people to feed it because they haven’t learnt about it or something like that? so they can only tell people to feed starchy kibbles to cancer patients when in reality we know that’s a bad idea as cancer feeds on the starch and instead of naturally curing it your setting up your dog for chemo and likely death, I hope someday they change that thought process and start naturally treating problems instead.

  • Susan

    We are getting the Hills D/D Potato & Venison dry kibble in Australia…. but ingredients don’t look that great….I suppose it will help a few dogs that have food intolerances but the protein is so low 18% & the carbohydrates are too high at 58% carbs, not healthy for a dog with health problems…
    I pray all these new young vets will change the future for sick cats & dogs & recommend feeding a balanced cooked or raw diet especially if their dog or cat is ill.. Vet diet are good to get the dog stable again then the owner needs to do their own research & replace the vet diet with something more healthy….

  • disqus_SBl7sCuYS7

    Instead of trying more different foods, I would make an appointment with a veterinary dermatologist. The first step would be to get him properly diagnosed, then you can evaluate the treatment options presented. His issues may or may not have anything to do with the food. Go to forums and search “allergies” for more information.
    Prednisone and such is often necessary for brief periods to stop the suffering from pruritus and prevent infection.
    Has he had a senior workup? Bloodwork? Have medical causes for his condition been ruled out? If not, that may be a good place to start.
    BTW: Liquid Benadryl has an artificial sweetener in it that is toxic to dogs, please speak to your vet before trying over the counter meds and homeopathic remedies. Best of luck.

  • Brenda Strickland

    Olive oil in his ears honey in case he has mites. Olive oil kills mites. If it is a bad case it can take up to 6 weeks to kill them. You have to bath him in Dawn and use Sulfur related shampoos like Selsum Blue Medicated. Don’t bath too often cause that also creates a problem for them because you are washing away the natural oils. Put coconut oil in his food and it also could be a thyroid problem with age. There is all naturals you can use for that as well. Fish oil is excellent for their skin. If you are seeing black patches that can be a trail left by mites. We are going through the exact same thing with our yorkie. I refuse steroids. A friends dog went into renal failure and died from prednizone. I just found out about the blue dawn and I am doing that and also using an anti itch/allergy shampoo. Apple cidar vinegar calms him down as well and unfortunately on the bad days or nights benedryll. Sounds like your guys is very little.My yorkie is 5 lbs and I give him 2.5 mg of Childrens Benedryll Liquid x3 a day. I would probably cut that in half for your baby. I am convinced that dust mites create our guys a problem. There is really no other explanation. I have switched foods several times to no avale. Its just plain terrible. Good luck sweetie. It really is all trial and error.

  • Monica Morales

    May I recommend you check out DogsForTheEarth Dog Food, it’s organic and dehydrated to preserve nutrients. My dogs love it and the owners are animal behaviorists and nutritionists, they will even reply to your emails! Good luck!

  • Amateria

    Oh so the feather meal food is actually out now, I figured they might decide against it (wishful thinking lol).

    She’s very lucky to have you 😀

  • mahoraner

    couldn’t have said it better myself

  • GSDsForever

    yeah . . . I hadn’t seen “partially hydrogenated vegetable oil” preserved with TBHQ and BHA listed on a dog food ingredient list either until the other day on DFA. (Lovely vet prescription diet.)

    Yum! Plus all the hydrolyzed soy protein isolate and potato (or corn?) starch you could ever desire!

    Of course, a vet office here was recommending the newest hypoallergenic diet: hydrolyzed bird feathers. I’ve told my dog how lucky she is her mom loves her enough that she is NOT going to feed her that! Allergies or no, we would find another way! LOL.

  • Amateria

    I said on pet food reviews that I’ve never seen lamb by products before now I can say that I’ve never seen duck by products either.

    I mean it as a listed ingredient that is.

  • GSDsForever

    LOL. Ditto!

  • GSDsForever

    Hi Ana. You’re welcome!

    So glad to hear your dog had stools, ending your worry on that part!

    Please keep in mind that if you wish to do the food allergy trial with a novel protein formula, as your vet recommended, you will need to start over again with 10-12 weeks straight of just the salmon&potato — no chicken, no rice — and nooooooo treats (from you or anyone else), flavored meds, flavored doggie toothpaste, outside scavenges, or ANYTHING but the new food.

    Good luck! Hope the paw licking ends sooner than later. 🙂

  • Ana

    Thank you so much for your reply. I made him rice, chicken and added a bit of ginger yesterday and by night time his bowl movement was normal. He pooped 3 times 🙂 never been so happy a see a poop before lol

  • GSDsForever

    Hi Ana.

    If a dog in fact has a food allergy, it can take up to 12+ weeks with a new food for symptoms to resolve. (That is why allergy food trials are recommended 10-12 weeks minimum.)

    That said, if your vet did NOT rule out other causes for paw licking, here are other causes — which are in fact more common:

    Inhalant allergies

    Contact allergies and contact irritants

    Yeast overgrowth/fungal and/or bacterial infection

    Flea allergy

    Behavioral (some with genetic/breed links): Obsessive compulsive behavior, anxiety/stress (esp. separation anxiety, confinement, etc.), boredom, inactivity/inadequate exercise, high strung temperament

    Injury/Problem with specific paw(s): nail problem, thorn, injured pad, joint pain/bone spur, tumor

    Nevertheless, a food trial to simply a different food is easy enough, inexpensive enough to be worth trying (particularly with a still commonly available protein, like salmon/fish, vs., say, Brushtail or Beaver ) — esp if he just started licking paws with your former food when he never had before and if the paw licking is year round.

    You just might wish to inquire with your vet about other possible causes, try other simple remedies too — like foot soaking/disinfecting in case of yeasty paws or bacterial infection, simply washing off environmental allergens after a walk, observing for a behavioral connection.

    Smaller and more infrequent stools on a new food have much to do with what food you switched from, digestibility/residue differences and may not be a sign of a problem at all. This particular Hill’s food is low fiber and is supposed to be highly digestible.

    As an analogy, when for digestive upset most dogs are given homemade meals of boiled plain chicken and white rice or cottage cheese and white rice, owners often seen a complete absence of stools and then very small output.

    I’m not sure what you mean re lumpiness (??) & whether it’s a problem. For how long/how many stools? You’re still in an adjustment period to a new food, having just changed recently. Right?

    FYI, a very comparable food formula that might be a bit higher quality, lower price (as OTC) is Wellness Simple’s (Limited Ingredient/Allergy) Salmon & Potato — which also would give a bit more fiber than Hill’s 1.8%, in addition to better protein percentage (25% vs 18%).


    (For comparison, Hill’s Potato-Salmon: http://www.hillspet.com/en/us/products/pd-canine-dd-potato-and-salmon-dry )

    If your vet is concerned about a non-rx food, this line has been reviewed in a recent vet journal article study of OTC limited ingredient, novel protein diets for food allergy trials. It was the only OTC brand found to be uncontaminated by unlisted ingredients (including the top food allergens — beef, chicken, dairy, wheat, soy, etc.).

  • Ana

    Hello, I have a five years old Maltese. he has been excessively licking his paws. the vet said it could be food allergy and he recommended Hill’s Prescription Diet Potato & Salmon Formula dry food. I started mixing it with the old food to avoid complications. it’s been a week now and I’ve noticed my dog is not pooping as often and his poop is lumpy. what should I do? it looks like an early sign of constipation. paw licking seems to be the same.

  • Emma Smith

    It could be environmental, not food. I give my dogs a little bit of raw goats milk every evening. It helps with basically anything you could think of. Look it up. I’m also going to start giving pure msm. Was just reading up on it. It also helps with many, many things, including allergies. You could give him a benadryl too.

  • JeremyScott10

    I highly recommend Dr. Karen Becker’s newsletter and taking a look at her videos. I would also try to do a phone consult with her, or ask for suggestions for holistic vets.

    Have you tried Dogs for the Earth? It’s a very pure, no grain, very palatable food that my dog loves (just add water, probiotics and enzymes to heal and strengthen gut/immune system and help food digest). She also like the pathogen free type of freeze dried foods like Primal Venison and Stella and Chewys. For kibble I like Real Meat Food Co air dried.


  • theBCnut

    Look into Limited Ingredient Diets. LIDs help to figure out what your dog is reacting to and what it can handle. Try finding one that is as different from his previous foods as possible.

  • Cherrie Dolan Cadran

    I am so confused on what is good for my Nemo(teacup chihuahua) he had lost almost all his fur,scaly dandruff like skin,red raw skin,stinky,stinky he was and those ears omg like black tar coming out .The Vet did nothing but make him worse and more worse keeping him on and off steroids and antibiotics. I googled and read everything I could on this subject, some of the advice I have read has helped tremendously we know longer give the Mista Nemo whatever he wants and when he wants it like NO cheese,no carrots,no beans,no cheerios,I started feeding him Beef & Chicken once in awhile spinach or green beans and coconut oil.bathing in dawn then antifungal shampoo,cleaning his ears as best I can,I have learned more on this subject of ear cleaning.New problem now he sneezes all the time snotting all over he cant sleep in our room I was getting no sleep,I feel so sorry for him being 11 years old I dont want his elder years to be all suffering,so now I am looking how to feed him better was thinking no more chicken or beef..Im running out of things I need more help

  • Bobby dog

    What a nice story to read and again what a lucky boy to find such a caring owner. You are the one that needs to be thanked!!

  • Bob’s Mom

    Thank you. He spent months in a cone before we tried this food. Coned after his surgeries and coned while we worked so he couldnt create new sores. He is indeed one lucky dog. He was a relative owner surrender. Spent his life in a backyard in Amarillo. He was 7 when my rescue group took him in and I kept him as my forever boy.

  • Bobby dog

    Hi Bob’s Mom:
    Minus dyes, chemicals, meat & bone meal and a few other undesirable ingredients, I believe what works best for your dog is the best food for them. Every dog is different. That must have been an awful existence for the poor guy before you got his diet sorted out. What a lucky dog!!!

  • Bob’s Mom

    Hills D/D Venison and potato has been a God send for us. Bob dog was on Fromm’s , which is a good quality food, as had been my previous wire fox terriers;. Bob is a rescue and was raised on Kibbles and Bits, so the transition was gradual, but effective. Bob began to chew his feet, his legs, his hind quarters, you name it. He chewed so much he created these HUGE lick granuoma’s . Two which were so bad they required surgery. We attempted to help him with allergy pills, shampoos, all natural cures, anxiety meds, you name it. Then my vet left the practice and another vet recommend Hills D/D. Within three months he quit the gnawing and chewing, and all his skin lesions cleared up. It may not be the best kibble on the market, but for Bob dog it was a gift.

  • Amanda g

    I have had a positive experience with hills prescription diet d/d. when my gsd was 8 month old he was eating chicken soup for the soul dog lovers large breed puppy. When time passed I noticed that he was getting hair loss around his eyes And ears. He even got a few skin bumps.And his belly felt warmer than if should be. It looked a little beloted too. But I assure you there he was on revolution and he was deformed a couple weeks back. My gsd refused to eat sometimes even if it has been a while since he’s ate. (Chicken soup at the time) Vet wanted to treat him with signs of mange but when his treatments were over. Things seemed to get worse. My vet then prescribed my baby on D/D HILLS prescription diet. I’ve seen such great improvement. His hair has grown back and has been gobbling his food down like it was the end of the world. He’s beginning go take naps now because he never did b4. Which was odd because he was a puppy. Im going to assume this has been allergies. When I’m done with this trial I want to switch dog foods. Maybe something grain free? Any ideas?

  • justwatchingu

    it is a prescription only food, you can get it from a local veterinarian.

  • Pattyvaughn

    What are you feeding now? Grain intolerance can give these symptoms, so trying a grain free food may be very worthwhile.

  • Same symptoms for my Maltese. Her allergies were affecting her quality of life. I have finally found a vet. That is trying everything. She is now on an antihistamine. Plus steroid. Trying to cut back on the steroid to every other day. It’s so pitiful. And my girl knows she is allergic to grass. She hates it! Is the dd food helping, I don’t think so, but I’m willing to do anything to help her!

  • dani

    Hound Dog Mom- thank you for responding. will check out the forum , thanks! LOL The article  from Dr. Karen Becker is where i got my info  that the potatoes in his diet were a big mistake. Thats a great article .

  • Hound Dog Mom

    Hi dani –

    14% protein is WAY too low for any dog, let alone a growing puppy. If you head over to the forum section, under the “Dog Food Ingredients” forum Marie has put together a list of grain-free and white potato free foods. These foods would be a great choice for a dog with yeast issues – make sure the food you pick is approved for “growth” or “all life stages.” Also, here is a good article on yeast in dogs from Dr. Karen Becker – it addresses what you should be doing to get the yeast under control:


  • dani

    my 10 month old pup was put on the d/d potatoe and venison 4 months ago for skin allergy problems. He also has reoccuring yeast problems. My concern is the main ingredient is potatoe? and the protein content  seems way too low for a growing puppy. I thought you were suppose to feed a diet with around 26% protein, this food only has 14% protein. I have also read that potatoes are no good for yeast problems. Im switching to a grain/potatoe free diet.

  • sandy

    He needs something more nutritious than this 1 star food.  Look at the first 5 ingredients – only one of them is actually meat.  And it’s not a meat meal which is more concentrated. It’s almost like eating potato chips with fiber!  The duck by-product meal is even listed behind the salt so there can’t be much of that either. Did you know ingredients are listed in descending order by precooking weight?  I would put him on a grain free and potato free food.  If you could try raw food that would be best, if not then a grain/potato free canned food (Ex: Merrick Before Grain, Natures Variety Instinct), then the grain/white potato free kibble.

    Examples of grain/potato free kibbles:  Brothers Complete Allergy, Back to Basics, Natures Variety Instinct and Instinct LID, Earthborn Holistic Grain Free Great Plains, Dogswell Nutrisca, Canine Caviar, Horizon Legacy (Amicus/Pulsar/Legacy), California Natural Grain Free Salmon formula and Kangaroo formula and Chicken Meal formula, EVO Herring & Salmon, Nutrisource Grain Free, Innova Prime, Darford Zero G.  

    Some fish oil supplements or coconut oil might also help, and a good dog probiotic/enzyme supplement for good immune system/digestive health.


    Just my thoughts 🙂  Hope he feels better soon.

  • Linda

    I have been feeding my terrier mix Hills DD since 01-20-12 and his hair loss problems are getting worse!  Any suggestions?

  • Linda

    My vet just put my terrier mix on Hills DD potato and salmon.  He was being fed Blue Wilderness.  Benny has horrible dry itchy skin and has bitten quite a bit of the hair off – like a mohawk down his back.  I hope this works

  • Giselle

     My dog had horrible itching, hair loss and scabs all over his back and tummy. He had been on Natural Balance dry food. After thousands of dollars in vet bills (including allergy tests), antibiotics and D/D potato venison formula, the symptoms came back once he finished the antibiotic trials. The D/D diet did not help. The antibiotics took care of the bacterial infection (along with expensive medicated shampoo) for a short while. In the end, I took him off of the D/D food and the antibiotics and now feed him home cooked ground turkey with white rice. He looks BEAUTIFUL again! Super shiny coat, no more hair loss! Next step is to slowly add some foods to the diet to give him complete nutrtion. I am not a D/D advocate.
    show more

  • Giselle

    Hi Lucia. My dog had horrible itching, hair loss and scabs all over his back and tummy. He had been on Natural Balance dry food. After thousands of dollars in vet bills (including allergy tests), antibiotics and D/D potato venison formula, the symptoms came back once he finished the antibiotic trials. The D/D diet did not help. The antibiotics took care of the bacterial infection (along with expensive medicated shampoo) for a short while. In the end, I took him off of the D/D food and the antibiotics and now feed him home cooked ground turkey with white rice. He looks BEAUTIFUL again! Super shiny coat, no more hair loss! Next step is to slowly add some foods to the diet to give him  complete nutrtion. I am not a D/D advocate.

  • melissa


    If your dog does not have food allergies to certain proteins, then how aout trying something that is made for “sensitive stomahs”? I have not tried it, but I have noticed several times a canned product called ‘Dave’s Dog food” for sensitive stomachs-I do not know the protein source as I have never looked at the can closely.

    If this were my dog, and no allergies that are an issue, I would look for something a little higher in fat than what you are currently feeding-SLIGHTLY higher-and transition slowly. If the dog tolerates it, I would then after a month or two, look for something slightly better from there and keep moving onward until you find something of high quality that does not upset the digestive tract. You might also try something with a smaller kibble size to see if your dog will eat that in addition-but no salami, lol.

    Peter-Simply, not everyone has the time to cook or prepare foods for their dogs.It does not make them lazy or any less caring.

  • Peter

    My dogs are on a raw diet and they are super healthy and fit. Dog food companies create ‘food’ out of the cheapest ingredients. Their bottom line is to make a huge profit whether the food is good for the dog or not. Surely this should send alarm bells for any pet owner. Just for the sake of convenience and lazyness people are unwilling to put a little bit more effort in preparing their dogs food by using ingredients that they would eat if in the wild. Dogs have socially evolved but they are biologically the same as any wild dog. Please, boycott these nasty dog food companies and use common sense when feeding your dog. Google BARF diets for dogs.

  • sandy


    Have you seen Weruva canned food. I just bought some to try out. It’s real chicken and not greasy. weruva.com. Also, have you tried the 95% canned meat? Maybe mix that in with the d/d canned or give it plain with a dog vitamin. Have you tried raw food? It’s real meat also. Since your dog is so small, have you considered just cooking for him? If he did well on the chicken and rice, why not keep doing it? Just add a dog vitamin.

  • abba

    i recmman it to all dog owners, i live in mobile al usa

    i would love to buy d/d for my dog , if there is store in mobile

    that sale it please let me know by phon or EM thanks abba

  • Jonathan

    If limited ingredients is what you are after, Natural Balance makes a line of LID canned foods. They have Duck and Potato, Venison and Sweet Potato, Bison and Sweet Potato, and Fish and Sweet Potato. Ask you vet about these.

  • Dianne B. Mullis

    My 5/6 pound Yorkiepoo Sharpee has been on canned d/d Venison for a year or more now.Recently requested of my Vet a flavor change and canned d/d Duck was approved for me to purchase.He was originally prescribed z/d for GI issues from my husband giving him a piece of salomi.When he continued to have diarrhea for three months on the z/d added to boiled chicken & rice and many $$$ in Vet bills testing him for everything possible,I said he can’t talk but I can.His food needs to be changed!That’s when he was switched to d/d.Early on I thought that this food was mainly meat but finally was told by Hills Prescription rep.that the d/d foods are meat flavored.I am paying 2.60 a can for no meat.I also buy the d/d treats for him because he is so picky and won’t eat dry food.The food agrees with him but I know that his bowel movements get loose when he has grease.Strange because he can tollerate cheese.I also mix the venison and duck together to give him a change.My question, are there other companies that offer a good canned food that would have real meat and not greasey like z/d canned. Thanks in advance,Dianne

  • Linda Faulkner

    My little terrier/poodle was on Hills Prescription diet for 3.5 weeks which she really liked but had difficulty having a bowel movement ,which was very hard. Added moist pumpkin to the
    dry food also cut the size of the dry food in half which seemed too large for a small dog. Returned the food.

  • Jonathan

    Try a Natural Balance LID like Potato and Duck or Sweet Potato and Bison. That may help get the poops under control!

  • Jennifer

    fairly quickly because i was running out of the uekanuba, but he has been on innova puppy food for 2 months and has the same problems with diarhea, i even mix oatmeal in it so that it’s not as runny but more like pudding i would say. The vet said that if the hills doesn’t work then he would like to do some test to see if my puppy has a bacterial infection. I was thinking of trying the large breed puppy food instead of the regular since my puppy is a siberian husky. Any suggestions?

  • Jonathan

    How long did you transition for one food to the next?

  • Jennifer

    Hi! when we first got our puppy we were feeding him Uekanuba chiot dry puppy food, when i started doing research on foods and noticed that my puppy wasn’t eating the food and was loosing weight, decided to change him to Innova puppy food, but now he has constant diarhea but loves the food and is still gaining weight, just can’t get rid of the diarhea. My veterinarian suggested that i put him on Hills Prescription Diet the venison and potatoe. I’ve read the reviews on this food and am not impressed. I’m worried that he is going to have even more problems, especially with the potatoes and corn products included with very little meat source. What would you suggest i feed him, he is only 4 months old?

  • Jonathan

    Natural Balance Limited Ingredients Diet. Try any of them with a unique protein. If your dog is still having problems after that, I dunno what to tell you!

  • andy conners

    we have a almost 2 yr. old lab that has been on d/d venison & potatoe for almost a year (at $87 for 28lbs.) recently he seems so uncomfortable chewing at his paws licking shedding like crazy etc… seems that food isnt doing anything? we met a person that has told us to stay away from any food that has grain in it. any thoughts out there about what food could be used????

  • Hi Karisa… For help and a list of suggested hypoallergenic dog foods, please see our FAQ page. Look for the topic, “Dog Food Allergies”. By the way, food is only the third leading cause of allergies. So, don’t forget to look at the dog’s environment, too.

  • Karisa

    I have a five year old Maltese who has been suffering from severe allergies for the past couple of years. I have spent thousands (yes, thousands) of dollars trying to help him get some relief. He gets ear infections, scratches and itches his skin raw, chews his paws until they are red and swollen and has infected little pustules all over is stomach and legs. It sounds terrible (and it is), but he is still so cute and always Mr. Personality. He has had the blood tests and they determined that he is basically allergic to everything. We went through two rounds of the hyposolution, atopica, different food trials (is currently on the D/D Salmon and Potato formula), Benadryl (etc), sour apple spray for his feet and several other things…nothing has worked except for small rounds of steroids. I will not keep him on the steroids for obvious health reasons. Does anyone have any suggestions?? I was about to order some medicated shampoo and some Omega-3 capsules. Help…please.

  • Shaun

    We have a lab mix. She started with itching her neck until it became raw, and the the itching increased all over. We have tried several dog foods along with benadryl and claritin and nothing seemed to work. I put her on the Hills d/d potato and duck, and what a difference. I had run out, and put her on the Royal Canine Potato and Duck, and I have to get her off of it because of itching again and back on the Hills. Something in it works. For us, Hills is the way to go.

  • Liz

    My vet recommended this dog food for my dog because she has kidney failure and can have little protein, little sodium, and little to no meat. It is great for her and she eats it fine. We have had no problems with this dog food at all.

  • Hi Thomas… Unfortunately, other than the star ratings themselves, I cannot provide customized product recommendations. Please visit our FAQ page and look for the topic, “Dog Food Allergies” for more information. You’ll also find a link to my suggested hypoallergenic dog foods. Or check back for a possible response from one of our other readers.

  • Thomas

    Also, Mike, what Brand/food from the 5star list would you recommend for an adult dog with potential food allergies?

  • Thomas

    My vet just reco’d this food to me for my Shiba Inu’s itchy skin. I went with the Potato & Venison Formula over the salmon. Since some people are swearing by this and others saying it isn’t great I’ll post the info from the bag mainly because I don’t know how to read it and I’m sure some of you do and can provide good input! Thanks in advance.

    (Info off bag below)

    Guaranteed Analysis:
    Crude Protein 14% (140g/kg) MIN
    Crude Fat 13% (130g/kg) MIN
    Crude Fiber 3% (30g/kg) MAX
    Moisture 10% (100g/kg) MAX
    Ash 8% (80g/kg) MAX
    Calcium 0.5% (5g/kg) MIN
    Phosphorus 0.35%(3.5g/kg) MIN
    Vitamin E 450 IU/kg MIN
    Ascorbic Acid (Vit C) 85mg/kg MIN
    omega-6* 2.5% (25g/kg) MIN
    omega3* 0.5% (5g/kg) MIN
    Eicosapentanoic Acid* 0.14% (1.4g/kg)MIN

    *Not recognized as an essential nutrient by the AAFCO Dog Food Nutrient Profiles.

    AAFCO STATEMENT Use only as directed by your veterinarian. Animal feeding tests using AAFCO procedures substantiate that Prescription Diet(tm) d/d Canine Skin Support Potato & Venison Formula(tm) provides complete and balanced nutrition for maintenance of adult dogs.

  • Jonathan

    I just searched the web for half an hour trying to find an AAFCO statement about his food and got nowhere. I ended up on the Hill’s web page looking at their “FAQ” and their “dog food myths”. What a joke! It’s almost like it’s set up as a defence against your site, Mike.

    And it blatantly denies that dogs are carnivores.

    It stands for corn like a champ.

    It refutes the need for all meat-based protein.

    It talks up chicken by-products like it was the holy grail.

    And, it reitterates the “no people food” crap they always shuffle around.

    Cracked me up.

  • Jonathan

    Ha! I guess they do. A self-serving system if I’ve ever seen one.

  • Some foods are for intermittent feeding only. And this could be one of them. However, without further information, I guess they want us to rely on the vets to “prescribe” these products.

  • Jonathan

    Interesting. I have seen, though, on several different prescription Hill’s products an AAFCO statement that says “for intermittent feeding only”.

    It also says that on the nifty new marketing gimmick “weight loss system” they came out with where all the food and treats are in pre-measured plastic bags for those to incompetent to handle a measuring cup and count out 2 bones.

    And, in any account, “rock bottom minimum” still means “find a better food” to me… 🙂

  • Jonathan… Although there’s no AAFCO statement on the company website (common with many Hill’s Prescription products), this doesn’t mean there something inadequate about this product. I’d suspect the recipe is almost certainly AAFCO compliant.

    With no adequacy statement, it’s impossible to know for which of the two recognized nutritional profiles the food is appropriate. The 18% dry matter protein content in this product is right at the rock bottom minimum needed to meet AAFCO nutritional standards for adult maintenance only (not growth or reproduction).

  • Jonathan

    Vicki… just because it is working for a given problem (which no one is contesting that it may) doesn’t mean it is truly nourishing your pup.

    There is little in the way of “good stuff” in this food. It doesn’t have chelated minerals, and it uses know carcinogens as preservatives. There is hardly any meat in it, and it has so little protein that it doesn’t even have an adequacy statement from AAFCO. It is only meant for intermittent feeding.

    Have you tried Natural Balance Limited Ingredients Diet Potato and Duck? It is a much better food, and serves the same purpose by using a unique protein and only potato as the carbohydrate.

    And be SURE to transition to any new food SLOWLY. If you are throwing down a new food over night, then he will almost certainly get sick.

  • Vicki

    My 5 1/2 year old shih tzu has been on the Salmon/Potato d/d formula since she had severe GI issues at age 2. She loves the food and the food loves her. Because of the numerous poor reviews of this product I have tried on two occasions to change her diet – once to home made and once to the Hill’s duck and potato d/d. She became very ill (7-10 days) on both occasions so I’m sticking with the Salmon & Potato Formula. Something must be right in it.

  • Hi Donna… I’m so sorry to hear about your dog’s urinary crystal problem. Unfortunately, since I’m not a veterinarian, you’ve asked a question I don’t feel qualified to answer. Like with humans, each dog responds to a particular food (or an ingredient) in its own unique way. So, because we only rate ingredient quality and estimate meat content, it would be misleading for me to assure you feeding a specific product would control your dog’s urinary crystals. Wish I could be more help.

  • donna

    My 7 year old cockapoo has been on eating Blue dry food; the lamb and rice flavor. In addition, she gets some cheese during the day, and a biscuit here and there. Recenty, she would begin to tremble and have accidents. After some testing, I was told she had a lot of crystals in her urine, and need to go on a specific diet. My vet recommended Royal, but my dog didn’t like it and is now on Hill’s c/d in the can.
    Can you recommend a brand that would benefit my dog and be healthier for her to eat while keeping these crystal at bay?

  • Hi Joyce… Sorry to hear about your dog’s experience. And I can understand your desire to switch. However, if you’re concerned about the smoke flavor (a common ingredient in human foods) I’d suggest you first read our review and check out what’s in Hill’s Prescription Diet D/D before you decide to feed it to your dog. Hope this helps.

  • Joyce Heckber

    Before you recommend Natural Balance, check with the manufacturer as to why they added FAKE smoke flavor to the canned sweet potato and venison recently. There’s nothing natural about it. They changed their formula and when I contact Natural Balance, they acted like they didn’t know anything about it. Also, our Yorkie has been eating the Sweet Potato and Venison hard food from Natural Balance. She is now recovering from a horrible bout of throwing up blood and black tarry stools. I have just read postings as recent as November 2010 that there have been dogs exhibiting the same symptons. Is this a coincidence? I’m am scared now to feed her anything from Natural Balance and we are going back to Hill’s D/D venison and potato as our vet orginally recommended.

  • Lisa

    My dog had been on D/D for years. She had a pretty coat but still itching. Recently her back broke out in scabs and flakes. She itches like crazy and her eyes are runny. Her coat looks awful. I started cooking for her and only after 2 days the itching subsided almost 100%. I have now switched her to California Natural -venison and I add a little Evandager(sp?) venison. I hope it works!

  • Hi Angie… I’m happy to see this food has been crucial in helping to treat your dog. However, as I say in this review, “it is not our intention to judge the appropriateness of any dog food to treat a specific condition”. All the reviews on our website attempt to evaluate ingredient quality and meat content only. And we do that by reading and interpreting pet food labels. Nothing more. A food can still be made with low quality ingredients and yet deliver the results your dog needs. Even though this product may only rate 1-star to us, it is obviously a “5” to your dog. And that’s OK.

  • Angie

    If it weren’t for finding d/d egg and rice my shih-tzu would prob no longer be with us. I had tried every kind of dog food available over a 2 year period. (he would puke up yellowish byle) and had a terrible sour stomach. He was taking 1/2 a zantac twice a day when feeding just to keep food down. His legs, belly and up were pink from his constant licking from allergies. He has now been on d/d as soon as it became available without illness. Except for the occasional treat he may have found that will still upset him. This food saved his life!

  • Hi Mandy… There’s no way to know for sure what the phrase “natural flavors” means. Many companies (like Natura, the makers of California Natural) keep this a secret. They say it’s “proprietary”. Yet others hide behind the term “natural” and still formulate these flavorings in a laboratory. How they can legally get away with this, I’m not sure.

    In any case, it would seem to me that there would be no direct relationship between “natural flavoring” and your dog’s allergy history. I’d still check with your vet to be certain. Sorry I can’t be more help.

  • Mandy

    Maybe you could give me your opinion.. my 7 year old boxer/sheltie mix has allergies to all poultry and grains as well as carrots.. she has been on the Hills d/d salmon and potatoe diet for the last year and a half. I have been researching and wanting to change her over to California Natural Grain free, the only thing I am concerned of is one of the ingredients listed, natural flavors.. how do I know as a buyer these natural flavors don’t include any poultry?

  • lex

    For a couple years my shih tzu suffered from bad skin allergies. I think she was 13 when it started (she’s 15 now). A lot of the fur was falling out on her back (because she would scratch it on the carpet or the table all the time) and the skin was flaking off. She smelled weird…like a corn chip (aside from the usual doggy smell, haha). Almost all the fur fell off her tail too, so it just looked like a rats tail. She looked so sad. I think it took a lot out of her, because all she did was sleep all day…didn’t want to go out and barely left her bed. I’ve had her since I was six years old and all of this made me sad to see her grow old. But, after many trial and errors, my mom put her on the hill’s prescription diet-d/d-venison formula for canine’s (canned food) as well as hill’s prescription diet-d/d-skin support-potato and duck formula (dry food). She also adds a little bit of skinless chicken to the meal…and the results have been fantastic! she has a ton of thick hair and the hair on her tail has almost grown back. And another nice surprise was the energy boost it gave her. She is always up and about sniffing around the house and going to the front door wanting to go out. It has been a totally, amazing difference. I just want to spread the word because I feel this new diet will add years to her life.

  • lucia

    my vet recently recommended i switch my dog from natural balance sweet potato & venison to hill’s d/d rabbit formula. he had a fungal & bacterial infection & a very itchy muzzle & neck. i switched his food from natural balance to hill’s. he was also given some antibiotics but the change of food & trying to get the pills down was too much so i backed off the pills & kept the hill’s food. the itching recently came back & i am not sure the food helps. i think he just has seasonal allergies & itches b/c of them. i met a vet at a dog park & he recommended some claritin 🙂

  • Hi Dana… Our point in saying we found no AAFCO nutritional adequacy statement isn’t to demean the product but to let readers know we’re unable to determine the life stage for which this product is recommended for. Is this dog food designed for “all life stages”, “adult maintenance” or “growth”? This is a very important piece of data that is missing from the website. It simply isn’t practical (or affordable) for us to go out and purchase the hundreds of products we review. So, we depend on this public information as a primary source for making our analysis.

  • Dana

    In regards to, “Although each product appears to have been designed to help with certain skin conditions and digestive issues linked to food allergies, we found no AAFCO nutritional adequacy statements for these dog foods on the Hill’s website.”

    Just so people know, D/D, along will ALL Hill’s foods, not only have an AAFCO nutritional adequacy statement, they have actually gone through food TRIALS which MANY dog foods have not. This is why vets sell this food, because they are formulated and confirmed through FEED TRIALS that they are adequate. This may not be stated on their website, but it is stated on every bag of Hill’s dog food.

    Though Hill’s d/d does not work for every dog, it does work.

  • Penny

    My vet has prescribed d/d lamb and rice for all three of my Westies. As you know Westies are notorious for skin allergies. My male Westie Max has packed on the pounds! He hasn’t changed his outdoor activity level or consumed more food. My two females are beginning to show signs of added weight and I’m concerned that they, too will become over weight. The one thing I have noticed at feeding time is they can not get enough to eat…it’s like they go away from their food bowl hungry. If they are getting mainly starch as your observation suggests then that is why they act hungry after they have been fed…and I want to add that their food is measured at each meal. My next step is to check your recommendations page. Thank you!

  • Hi SD… That is a very good question (but one for which I don’t have a very good answer).

  • SD

    Hey just a question. I’ve heard such bad reviews about the Hills diet not just from this site but from a lot of other sites. But why are vets still selling this dog food?

  • Hi Dori… finding the right dog food for each dog isn’t as easy as it seems it should be. Lots of trial and error. Try finding a 3, 4 or 5-star dog food on our website. Sometimes, when you’re looking for the cause of a problem it’s a good idea to look for very limited ingredient dog foods… products like Wellness Simple Food Solutions or Natural Balance Limited Ingredient Diets. There are others. Hope this helps.

  • Dori

    My doctor has just (yesterday) recommended that I start feeding my maltipoo (one year old and weighs 4.6 lbs.) Hills d/d because of all the constant itching and gas problems she has suffered from all her life. I have tried Avoderm, Canidae (the types meant for dogs with allergies) but nothing has helped her. I’m very skeptical to switch her to any Hills food because of its bad reputation and obviously for all the potatoe, very little meat and because of their use of BHA, propyl gallate and soybean oil. Don’t know what to do. Any recommendations from anyone with similar problems.

  • prl

    We find that the food has worked great for our sick dog who who has food allergies.