Purina One (Dry)


Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆

This Review Has Been Merged with
Purina One SmartBlend

Purina One dry dog food earns the Advisor’s below-average rating of 2 stars.

The Purina One Dog Food product line includes 3 kibbles… two claimed to meet AAFCO nutrient profiles for adult maintenance and one for both growth and maintenance (Large Breed Puppy).

  • Purina One Sensitive Systems
  • Purina One Large Breed Adult
  • Purina One Large Breed Puppy

Purina One Large Breed Adult Dog Food was chosen to represent the others in the line for this review.

Purina One Large Breed Adult

Dry Dog Food

Estimated Dry Matter Nutrient Content

Protein = 30% | Fat = 14% | Carbs = 49%

Ingredients: Chicken (natural source of glucosamine), brewers rice, poultry by-product meal (natural source of glucosamine), corn gluten meal, whole grain wheat, whole grain corn, animal fat preserved with mixed-tocopherols (form of vitamin E), pea fiber, oat meal, fish meal, animal digest, salt, potassium chloride, calcium phosphate, potassium citrate, vitamin E supplement, choline chloride, zinc sulfate, l-lysine monohydrochloride, l-ascorbyl-2-polyphosphate (source of vitamin C), ferrous sulfate, manganese sulfate, niacin, vitamin A supplement, calcium carbonate, copper sulfate, calcium pantothenate, garlic oil, pyridoxine hydrochloride, vitamin B12 supplement, thiamine mononitrate, riboflavin supplement, calcium iodate, vitamin D3 supplement, menadione sodium bisulfite complex (source of vitamin K activity), folic acid, biotin, sodium selenite

Fiber (estimated dry matter content) = 5.1%

Red items indicate controversial ingredients

Estimated Nutrient Content
Guaranteed Analysis26%12%NA
Dry Matter Basis30%14%49%
Calorie Weighted Basis27%30%44%
Protein = 27% | Fat = 30% | Carbs = 44%

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

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

Which brings us to brewers rice… the second and (more likely) the dominant ingredient in this dog food.

Brewers rice represents the small grain fragments left over after milling whole rice.

This is an inexpensive cereal grain by-product and not considered a quality ingredient.

The third ingredient is poultry by-product meal… a dry rendered product of slaughterhouse waste. It’s made from what’s left of slaughtered poultry after all the prime cuts have been removed.

This stuff can contain almost anything… feet, beaks, undeveloped eggs… you name it.

We consider poultry by-products slightly lower in quality than a single-species ingredient (like chicken by-products).

On the brighter side, by-product meals are meat concentrates and contain nearly 300% more protein than fresh poultry.

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

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

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

The next two ingredients include wheat and corn. Wheat and corn are inexpensive and controversial cereal grains of only modest nutritional value to a dog.

For this reason, we do not consider either wheat or corn preferred components in any dog food.

The seventh item 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 livestock.

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

The eighth ingredient is pea fiber… a mix of soluble and insoluble plant fiber derived from pea hulls. It is probably used here to add bulk.

In addition to the usual benefits of fiber, pea fiber can account for a trace of extra protein in this food.

The ninth ingredient is oatmeal… a whole-grain product made from coarsely ground oats. Oatmeal is naturally rich in B-vitamins, fiber and is also (unlike many other grains) gluten-free.

The tenth ingredient includes fish meal. Because it is considered a meat concentrate, fish meal contains almost 300% more protein than fresh fish itself.

Unfortunately, this particular item is anonymous. Because various fish contain different types of fats, we would have preferred to have known the source species.

Fish meal is commonly made from the by-products of commercial fish operations.

What’s more, the controversial chemical ethoxyquin is frequently used as a preservative in fish meals.

But because it’s usually added to the raw fish before processing, the chemical does not have to be reported to consumers.

We find no public assurances from the company this product is ethoxyquin-free.

Without knowing more, and based upon this fish meal’s location on the list of ingredients, we would expect to find only a trace of ethoxyquin in this product.

Animal digest is a chemically hydrolyzed concoction of unspecified body parts… from unspecified animals. Animal digest is usually sprayed onto the surface of a dry kibble to improve its taste.

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

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

With four notable exceptions

First, garlic oil may be a controversial item. We say “may be” here because we are not certain of the oil’s chemical relationship to raw garlic itself. Although the majority of experts favor the ingredient for its numerous health benefits, garlic (in rare cases) has been linked to Heinz body anemia in dogs.1

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

Next, we find no mention of probiotics… friendly microorganisms applied to the surface of the kibble after processing.

Thirdly, 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 Purina One recipe also contains menadione… a controversial form of vitamin K linked to liver toxicity, allergies and the abnormal break-down of red blood cells.

Purina One Dry Dog Food
The Bottom Line

Judging by its ingredients alone, Purina One Dry Dog Food appears to be a below-average kibble.

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

The dashboard displays a dry matter protein reading of 30%, a fat level of 14% and an estimated carbohydrate content of 49%.

As a group, the brand features an average protein content of 30% and an average fat level of 16%. Together, these figures suggest an overall carbohydrate content of 46% for the full product line.

Near-average protein. Average fat. And average carbohydrates… when compared to a typical dry dog food.

Yet when you consider the plant-based protein-boosting effect of the corn gluten meal, this is the profile of a kibble containing only a modest amount of meat.

What’s more, it’s difficult to ignore the presence of so many Red Flag items.

Bottom line?

Purina One Dry Dog Food is a grain-based kibble using only a modest amount of poultry or fish as its main sources of animal protein… thus earning the brand 2 stars.

Not recommended.

Those looking for a better kibble from the same company may wish to check out our review of Purina Pro Plan Selects Dry Dog Food.

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.

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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.

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 Chewy.com 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

12/04/2009 Original review
07/16/2010 Updated
06/02/2011 Updated (upgraded to 1.5 stars)
09/09/2011 Updated (SmartBlend recipes moved to dedicated report)
12/21/2012 Updated (merged with Purina One SmartBlend)

12/21/2012 Last Update

  1. Yamato et al, Heinz Body hemolytic anemia with eccentrocytosis from ingestion of Chinese chive (Allium tuberosum) and garlic (Allium sativum) in a dog, Journal of the American Animal Hospital Association 41:68-73 (2005)
  • Cindy Lowrimore

    I was a customer who used purina for nearly 5 years. My eldest dog was 13 at the time and my second dog was only 3. The youngest dog eats everything and anything put in front of her. She ate the first bowl I fed her and so did the oldest. They both fell terribly ill. Throwing up and diarrhea. After taking the food away and feeding them white rice and tons of water they started to come around to feeling a little better. I had no idea it was the food at the time and after they seemed to get better I went back to the same new bag of purina dog food. The youngest dog refused to eat it. I assumed maybe she wasn’t well enough to go back to the food so continued her on the white rice. The oldest dog, however, ate it. I am so lucky he pulled through the second time around. He’s not the youngest of dogs and certainly not as healthy as he once was. My husband called purina twice. They said that they would send a bag to our house and all we had to do was put some of the food onto the bag and send it back for testing… twice. NEVER did we receive it. After we spent so much time on the phone with them they never sent it as they said they would. I personally wouldn’t this company trustworthy. They certainly are not reliable. Thanks for doing absolutely nothing about your food purina. Thanks for making me think my dog of 13 years wasn’t going to make it.

  • kendallyn

    between purina one chicken and rice and dog chow i cant complain…any other food will mess up my boys belly….both of my boys (two rescues) get one (fairly big) scoop of purina one and a 3.5oz packet of ol roy wet food on top and if they dont….well if they dont they pout..i have had a few problem with my inside pup having diarrhea and after 3 weeks of feeding him in the kennel and not letting him eat anything else i realize the amount of treat/chewy bones i was giving him was crazy..now i have him on a daily probiotic chewys every other day and he is fine:)

  • Natalie Aleman

    A friend just showed me bugs coming out of the purina dog food! & they have refused to do a recall. So disgusting. Don’t feed this to your precious fur babies. they deserve so much better.

  • MarthaMyDear

    I know you posted this 4 years ago, but same thing here. My poor sweet Dalmatian Dottie died of the liver failure a few years ago. I’ve suspected Purina One dog food as the culprit. It’s the only food she took her entire life with me. My dogs now only get Merrick. No matter what my financial situation I will always find the money for their food. Just not worth the heartache.

    BTW, love this website. Thanks for all the hard work you guys do here at dogfoodadvisor.com! 🙂

  • Badgerbabe

    Our Cocker Spaniel is ten years old, and he’s been eating Purina Pro Plan Turkey & Venison for years. Recently he went in for his yearly shots, our vet told us to switch him to a diet food because he’s gotten a bit too pudgy (due to too many people food treats). Switched to the Pro Plan weight management and now he’s gotten several red irritated scaling spots that are quit itchy. Now we’re trying the Purina One weight management, and see if that helps. We can’t be sure if the food wad the cause, or the inoculations… as they both seem to trigger allergic reactions. We’ve gotten him a medicated shampoo and a cortisone spray, which seem to help, we’re going back to the vet this coming Monday to see what she says. I’ve seen an ad for Blue Buffalo that only has 3 ingredients… supposed to be good for dogs with allergies. His weight is a concern… but having itching sore skin is more of a problem as far as he is concerned… wish it wasn’t so hard to find exactly the right fix… without spending hundreds or thousands at the vets office. As for all the anti-Purina comments, I’ll just say we have used their products for all of our pets for a long, long time… and have never had any issues with them. So I’m not going to blast Purina.

  • Amanda Lynn Cruickshank

    I totally agree with him. Some dogs require more fats or carbs or protein.. Meaning judge by their performance. My vet actually told me this… This is why there are different kinds of dog food lol

  • InkedMarie

    You diddddn’t say what you were feeding but look at Dr. Tim’s. You may need to order it online but a couple of his formulas come in 40 and 44/45 pound bags which is unusual for a high quality food. Chewy dot com is a great place to order & with their return policy, if it doesn’t work, you will get a refund, If it works, you can save with auto ship.

  • dog_days

    Due to economic reasons I chose to try a cheaper dog food for a while and tried Purina One because it seemed close to the more expensive dog food I had been feeding. By the time we had gone through 3 bags 2 of my 3 German Shepherds developed large bald spots near their back ends and they had very inflamed skin. One had a very serious ear infection. His whole ear was red. Trying this product was a big mistake. I switched back to what I had been feeding and it took less than a week for the dogs sores to start healing and the dogs seemed relieved. I will never buy this or any cheap dog food again. I am just glad they weren’t poisoned or made more ill than they were. None of my dogs have ever been sick like this ever before. Shame on Purina for marketing such a sub standard food for our dogs!