Purina Pro Plan Veterinary Diets EN (Dry)


Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆

Purina Pro Plan Veterinary Diets EN Gastroenteric Canine Dog Food is not rated due to its intentional therapeutic design.

The Purina Pro Plan Veterinary Diets EN Gastroenteric product line includes four dry dog foods, each designed to help in the treatment of digestive issues.

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

  • Purina Pro Plan Veterinary Diets EN Gastroenteric
  • Purina Pro Plan Veterinary Diets EN Gastroenteric Naturals
  • Purina Pro Plan Veterinary Diets EN Gastroenteric Low Fat
  • Purina Pro Plan Veterinary Diets EN Gastroenteric Fiber Balance

Purina Pro Plan Veterinary Diets EN Gastroenteric was selected to represent the other products in the line for this review.

Purina Pro Plan Veterinary Diets EN Gastroenteric

Dry Dog Food

Estimated Dry Matter Nutrient Content

Protein = 26% | Fat = 12% | Carbs = 54%

Ingredients: Brewers rice, corn gluten meal, whole grain corn, chicken meal, animal fat preserved with mixed-tocopherols, coconut oil, dicalcium phosphate, calcium carbonate, wheat bran, natural flavor, potassium chloride, l-lysine monohydrochloride, sodium bicarbonate, salt, fish oil, soybean oil, zinc proteinate, vitamin E supplement, dried colostrum, choline chloride, l-ascorbyl-2-polyphosphate (source of vitamin C), manganese proteinate, ferrous sulfate, niacin, copper proteinate, vitamin A supplement, calcium pantothenate, thiamine mononitrate, riboflavin supplement, vitamin B12 supplement, pyridoxine hydrochloride, garlic oil, folic acid, vitamin D3 supplement, calcium iodate, biotin, menadione sodium bisulfite complex (source of vitamin K activity), sodium selenite

Fiber (estimated dry matter content) = 2.3%

Red items indicate controversial ingredients

Estimated Nutrient Content
Guaranteed Analysis23%11%NA
Dry Matter Basis26%12%54%
Calorie Weighted Basis24%27%50%
Protein = 24% | Fat = 27% | Carbs = 50%

The first ingredient in this dog food is brewers rice. Brewers rice is a cereal grain by-product consisting of the small fragments left over after milling whole rice. Aside from the caloric energy it contains, this item is of only modest nutritional value to a dog.

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

Although corn gluten meal contains 60% 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 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 fourth ingredient is chicken meal. Chicken meal is considered a meat concentrate and contains nearly 300% more protein than fresh chicken.

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 is coconut oil, a natural oil rich in medium-chain fatty acids.

Medium-chain triglycerides have been shown to improve cognitive function in older dogs.1

Because of its proven safety2 as well as its potential to help in the treatment of canine cognitive dysfunction syndrome (CDS) and chronic skin disorders, MCT can be considered a positive addition to this recipe.

The seventh ingredient is 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 six notable exceptions

First, we find wheat bran. Wheat bran is made from the tough outer layer of a wheat kernel. Brans are especially rich in dietary fiber, protein, vitamins and minerals.

Next, soybean oil 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.

In addition, garlic can be a controversial item. Although many favor the ingredient for its claimed health benefits, garlic has been linked to Heinz body anemia in dogs.3

So, one must weigh the potential benefits of feeding garlic against its proven tendency to cause subclinical damage to the red blood cells of the animal.

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

In addition, this food contains chelated minerals, minerals that have been chemically attached to protein. This makes them easier to absorb. Chelated minerals are usually found in better dog foods.

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

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

Purina Pro Plan Veterinary Diets EN Gastroenteric 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, Purina Pro Plan Veterinary Diets EN Gastroenteric looks like a below-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 26%, a fat level of 12% and estimated carbohydrates of about 54%.

As a group, the brand features an average protein content of 26% and a mean fat level of 11%. Together, these figures suggest a carbohydrate content of 55% for the overall product line.

And a fat-to-protein ratio of about 42%.

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

When you consider the protein-boosting effect of the corn gluten meal, this looks like the profile of a kibble containing a moderate amount of meat.

Bottom line?

Purina Pro Plan Veterinary Diets EN Gastroenteric is a plant-based dry dog food using a moderate amount of chicken or poultry by-product meals as its main sources of animal protein.

Purina Pro Plan Veterinary Diets 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

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 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

11/06/2016 Last Update

  1. Pan Y et al, Dietary supplementation with medium-chain TAG has long-lasting cognition-enhancing effects in aged dogs, British Journal of Nutrition, Volume 103, Issue 12, June 2010, pp 1746-1754
  2. Matulka RA et al, Lack of toxicity by medium chain triglycerides (MCT) in canines during a 90-day feeding study,Food Chem Toxicol, Jan 2009, 47(1) 35-9.
  3. Yamato et al, Heinz Body hemolytic anemia with eccentrocytosis from ingestion of Chinese chive (Allium tuberosum) and garlic (Allium sativum) in a dog, Journal of the American Animal Hospital Association 41:68-73 (2005)
  • anon101

    You may find the prescription food is less expensive at chewy https://www.chewy.com/purina-pro-plan-veterinary-diets-en-/dp/50010

  • Susan

    Hi Lynn,
    please be careful with Zignature it has double the amount of fat% & protein % & has Chickpeas & Lentils Chickpeas & Lentils can cause Intestinal stress with some dogs who suffer from stomach/bowel problems & if your girl has had problems with her bowel in the past best to avoid rich foods like Zignature…
    Like I posted in my post below, I have a dog with IBD make sure you stay around the same fat % protein & fiber % that’s in the Purina EN formula she’s eating & doing well on which is Protein-23-25%,Fat-10-12% & Fiber 2-3%max & you slowly introduce new kibble that is similiar in fat, protein & fiber the “4Health” Special Care Sensitive Stomach formula kibble is the closest in fat, protein & fiber % & she will probably do real well on the 4Health Sensitive Stomach formula, it has no peas, no chickpeas, no lentils, it just has Egg & Potato & is 1/2 the price then a vet diet.

  • anon101

    Zignature is a quality kibble, copy the nutritional info and show your vet, see if she approves.
    I have also heard good things about Pro Plan Focus for sensitive stomach and skin.
    Depending on the diagnosis, some dogs do stay on prescription food their entire lives and do well.
    Do you add a bit of something to the food? Ask the vet if you can add a little chicken or scrambled egg
    Plus, I always add at least a splash of water to dry food.
    More like 1/4 cup.

  • Susan

    Hi Lynn,
    You are right Vet Diets where once only ment to be feed till your dog was stable then the owner started to look for a better quality diet but cause vets dont really know much about Pet Foods when owners were asking their vets what should I feed my dog vets were telling pet owner to just keep feeding the vet diet he’s doing well on when there was no need for teh dog to continue eating the vet diet….
    You can look at “Hills Sciece Diet” Sensitive Stomach sold at pet shops or online the Hills Science Diet has similiar ingredients as the Purina EN has, the Australian Hills Sensitive stomach does, or Purina make their Pro Plan sensitive stomach formula BUT it’s salmon & when it was tested for toxins in August it had the highest amount of toxins out of all the kibbles that were tested, so I don’t really like recommending Purina Pro Plan Sensitive Stomach Salmon formula…
    Read what the Ingredients are in the Purina EN she’s eating, the ingredients are very poor in the Purina EN formula, especially how expensive it is…..
    You could ask your vet can you try the Hills Prescription Vet Diet “Hills I/d Digestive Care” wet Chicken & Vegetable Stew & the Hills I/d Digestive Care dry formula, both formula’s have better ingredeints then Purina vet diets have…Out of all the vet diet brands Hills have improved all their vet diets & their Science diet formula’s, but you probably want to get away from expensive vet diets.

    What Canidae formula were you feeding when she started to do sloppy poo’s? did you ever try the Canidae All Life Stages Platinum formula ? maybe the fat & protein % was way too high in the Canidae Formula you were feeding & she mighten need to be on a vet diet you just need to find the right food that agree’s with her.
    I would try a few normal premium dog foods, she’ll probably be OK, have a look at & try “Taste Of The Wild” Sierra Moutain Roasted Lamb Wet & Dry formula’s get a small bag, the TOTW Lamb kibble helped my boy with his IBD he was doing very sloppy poo’s, another good kible for sloppy poo’s is “4Health” do you live near a Tractor Supply shop? look for “4Health” Special Care, Sensitive Stomach formula, it has limited ingredients, it’s Egg & Potato, te fat & protein isnt really high & its very easy to digest, just make sure when you do try a new kibble you introduce the new kibble very SLOWLY over 10-14 days, start with adding under 1/4 cup of the new kibble & add the rest with the Purina EN old kibble to make 1 cup, do this for 3 days then increase the new kibble & add less old kibble, it tells you on the kibble bag how to introduce a new kibble to a dogs diet…..

  • Lynn Zwerling

    My almost 2 year old Standard Poodle was raised on Canadea (sp) but had soft stools from the very begining. After a load of antibiotics the get suggested EN which she has been eating for several months. Her stool is firm and what probably is normal but I am unhappy with the price and the availability of PurEna EN. The vet said she’d help find something less expensive after the dog got bettet, but has no other suggestion. Am wondering if anyone could recommend a similar product . I was under the impression that this food, dry kibble, did not have to be a permanent solution. Any advice would be appreciated. Thanks.

  • otterbird

    Well, three years after I posted that original comment, my dog continues to thrive on it. The very expensive, no grain stuff I gave her when I first got her (because everyone on the internet said it was the best) made her poop six times a day, and it was the consistency of pudding and she couldn’t gain a pound (she was really skinny when we got her from the shelter). And oh my goodness, the gas she passed. It would have peeled paint. Getting her to eat at all was a struggle, probably because what she was eating made her feel so bad. She’s done really well on Beneful- her weight is good, her poop is normal, she likes getting treats (wouldn’t take any before) and she’s much less anxious than she was when she was on the expensive no-grain stuff. Gas is (thankfully) much less pungent and less frequent, too!

    Doesn’t mean the fancy stuff doesn’t work for other dogs; it just didn’t work for ours. Every dog is different.

  • Tara Brady

    Oh gosh that food almost killed my babies. That is one of the worst rated dry kibble. BE AWARE OF Beneful!!

  • Kevin Urrutia

    Hey guys, the vet just recommended this food to my german shepherd pup and I was wondering if any of you guys were experiencing with yellow poop. We used to feed him BB Puppy formula but hes poop was very mushy and sometimes diarrhea, we then switched him to Orijen but he still had the runs even with medication from the vet. So now we are feeding him Purina Pro Plan Veterinary Diets EN Gastroenteric and hes poop still coming out mushy but kinda yellowish.

  • Tiffany Haney-Rose

    Can I feed it to a pregnant dog??
    I was just wondering because my pregnant dog has diarrhea .

  • aimee

    Hope it works out well for him.

  • Frena Williams Hokans

    Wow, thank you! That definitely looks better and is still only 2% fiber, so I will try that! Thanks again!

  • aimee

    If he does well on Purina Pro Plan EN have you considered the EN Gastroenteric Naturals? Personally I don’t use an ingredient list to determine quality of a diet but if you do maybe you’d like the ingredient line up in that product better.

  • Frena Williams Hokans

    My 2 year old Bullmastiff had a botched abdominal surgery at 5 months old, and has since had SEVERE intestinal adhesions. The vet says his intestines are a mess — all stuck together in a tight ball, with tight 180 degree turns. He’s been hospitalized several times for intestinal problems, and has had multiple surgeries for obstructions. I try to keep him on a lower fiber diet — he was recently on Wellness Tru Food, which he loves, but it’s 4.5% fiber which is a little higher than I like him to have. He will sometimes eat the Wellness Air Dried food, but sometimes he refuses it, and it’s extremely expensive. He just had another surgery last week for a very small obstruction — the vet said any normal dog would have easily passed the obstruction, but his intestines are so messed up it couldn’t pass without surgical intervention. They put him on the Purina Pro Plan Gastroenteric formula and amazingly, he really loves it. (Because of his intestinal problems, he has also become an extremely picky eater.) I really like it because it is only 2% fiber — I have not found any other dog food that low in fiber. I usually supplement his food with home cooked chicken breast and lean ground turkey and beef in order to keep his fiber content as low as possible. (He will only rarely eat raw meat, and I worry about bone slivers in the commercial brands.) I was planning to switch him to the Purina veterinary diet permanently, but after reading the review here, I think not. I did do a search for low fiber dog food at Chewy.com and their site popped up Taste of the Wild Pacific Stream, which has only 3% fiber. That’s really good, and it has a four star review here, so I bought a small bag to try it. If anyone has any suggestions for an extremely low fiber but high quality kibble, I would be happy to try it!!

  • Salty2

    Did you try human-grade for pets Probiotics?

  • Salty2

    Only use a human-grade for pets Probiotic. For liver & kidney problems Milk Thistle. is miracle working.

  • Salty2

    OMG! It’s not rated but look at the ingredients – horrible!!!

  • Carly

    EN is a great prescription diet food, and it’s not bad for your dog either. It’s chicken and rice formula is good for their intestinal track and is especially good for dogs with sensitive stomachs. Yes, the vets will reccomend you to feed them EN or a boiled chicken with white rice diet for a few days if your dog has pancreatitis, but the prescription diet is also filled with neccisary fibers to help form normal stools for your dog. I hate that people look up things on the Internet to diagnose their pets. The Internet is a terrible thing, and will feed you all sorts of information that is inaccurate. Purinia perscription diets are probably better than most.. Including Hills science diet and even Royal Canin. I do the food orders at the vet hospital I work at, and I try to learn everything I can about the food so I can ensure our clients are comfortable with what they feed their pets.

  • otterbird

    We ended up switching to Beneful and she handles it just fine. It’s really cheap at Target and Costco. Skeptvet.com was very helpful in sorting through a lot of the fact vs opinion where commercial dog food is concerned.

  • Kathy Frame

    Have you found over counter brand my dog is on en and it is to expensive thanks [email protected]

  • Brenda Williquette-mcfarlane

    Pepsid can cause problems with kidney and liver so I stoped using this product,my vet recommend fortiflora ,made by purina.its also good for dogs that have gas issues.

  • Rich

    Incidentally, the vet has always remarked about how great her teeth look, we don’t get them cleaned. She eats only dry dog food – no canned. She has several Milkbone medium size biscuits each morning. She also chews no real animal leftover bones (like steak, chops, etc.).

  • Rich

    Our Siberian husky was at first diagnosed with protozoan parasite giardia, for which I googled is common. I forget the pills that she took, but she recovered quickly. She had liquid or soft stools for some time, but the EN dry eventually got her better. I religiously picked up her droppings then. For many years now she has regularly produced several small solid turds. (with an occasional soft batch) I still pick up all her droppings every few days. She is an indoor dog.

  • Rich

    We have had our husky on EN dry for 8 years and she is doing great. She had severe runny stool as a 6 week old and with the en, she now has a few solid stools twice per day. With her sensitive stomach she still eats leaves every once in a while to throw up her bile (and we give her a pepsid when she doesn’t eat). I understand that rice – the first ingredient – is the thing for sensitive stomach. I guess that I would recommend it.

  • Rich

    We’ve had our husky on EN for 8 years and she is doing great. I understand it’s rice ingredient is good for sensitive stomach.

  • Debra Birkhead

    Good information~Thank you for posting.
    How is your pup doing on the 4Health Healthy Weight kibbls?

  • Debra Birkhead

    Our Golden Retriever used to eat rabbit turds and lick bird droppings and this would give her bloody diarrhea….may want to police her outside area and see where she is going and what she is picking up out of the yard to consume…just a suggestion….

  • Jennifer Laschi Harmon

    1st ingredient in the en dry is rice 🙂

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  • Vccgvv

    Houunnog is young with a sharp tongue

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    Bettsyy blogs from work bc she is a jerk

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    They mock and block around the clock

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  • otterbird

    Our dog poops less now that she’s on it. We got her from a shelter (pit bull mix) and she was pooping five or six times a day, always very dark and soft (we were feeing her Orijen 80/20 dry). She also was scooting and farting horrible smelly farts a LOT. The vet switched her to EN and she now goes 2 or 3 times a day, and the poop is much firmer- we can actually pick it up in the poop bags without half of it staying smeared all over the sidewalk. She’s stopped scooting and is not farting any more. I know meat-based diets are great for many dogs; it just wasn’t a fit for ours; her tummy can’t take rich foods. Our vet did recommend looking for a similarly bland over-the-counter brand of chow next because she herself agrees EN is expensive.

  • mike

    My dog was dying until my vet gave the the EN dog food and next day he was eating and gaining weight and having regular bowel movements. He still can not have any other food at all. Not one grain of rice or even a pea. My dog eats one piece of anything (even tiny) and it messes him up for 1-2 days. He can never have treats and I have to walk him with a muzzle because he will always find something on the ground to eat. A piece of pinecone or a wad of grass is horrific on his system and onsets within about 12-24 hours. Good luck but don’t amend the EN thinking he will get used to it. He is still going to be sick and no treats at all!!!

  • Lola

    Did they tell you what was wrong with your dog? My dog has the same issue and I’m 900 down and I still don’t know what the cause of it.

  • Lola

    I have the same issue with my cockapoo, the doctor put her on this diet and she has not poop for a day now. It did helped her with her bleeding and blood on her poop.

  • CAB22

    Diaherra , and blood/mucus in stool. Going in crate at night. No problem once switched to EN

  • Pattyvaughn

    Low residue diets and getting a bit older, both cause a dog to go less often.

  • Betsy Greer

    What kind of digestive issues does your dog have that she was put on this food in the first place?

  • CAB22

    Do any of your dogs poopie less on this food. Our 3 month old cockapoo puppy has been on it due to digestive issues for several weeks. Since she started she does not go poop after every meal. She eats 3 meals a day but poops once or twice. Is this normal?

  • Deb Askins

    My 6 yr old, 3 1/2 lb Yorkie has a very sensitive stomach. After 3 trips to the emergency hospital for vomiting, diarrhea, and pain I decided to give the Drs. Suggestion of feeding Purina EN a try. That was over 4 years ago. Chloe has been a happy healthy yorkie since! I have a second Yorkie, Sadie, she is 4, and weighs 8 lbs and has no health issues. Sadie eats the EN also, can’t have separate foods! She also is a very healthy dog. EN is great for dogs with stomach issues!

  • Darlene

    My dog was diagnosed with pancreatitis and my vet gave me several cans of EN. When I read the ingredients I was not thrilled with them but I had to feed her a teaspoon every hour or so for a few days until her system cleaned out. It does help until the pancreatitis attack clears up. After a few days I start adding some of her kibble dog food to the EN, then more and more kibble over the course of about a week. I did have to change her to a low fat kibble (Fromm’s Gold Weight Management). This seems to have helped her, but when she gets into something I get a can of EN from the vet, but it’s not something I want to feed her on a long term basis unless I have to.

  • Door Wayout

    The EN canned is a stable, bland diet, processed for a dog’s digestive system. Many dogs don’t do well with rich foods loaded with fancy stuff like blueberry, tomato, and buffalo meat. I learned that one the hard way.

    All the “high end” natural brands I tired just made my two dogs have terrible digestive problems. The Purina EN (canned) has improved them to 75% better after just two weeks. I have a Dachshund and a Maltese, one has stomach issues, one has allergies. They both feel better on the EN canned.

    For some dogs, the fancy brands which look good to humans are just too rich for them to digest, and they end up with pancreatic and other digestive issues.

    Fancy isn’t always better. In fact it can make your dog sick. Still, it is better than Beneful which is in my opinion total garbage.

  • Kae Mae

    Unfortunately, my puppy’s stomach issues were related to his BB puppy formula. He was sick for a month without us knowing the cause, but once he was put on this food and yogurt it cleared up. We will be looking for a simiiar formula here shortly that doesn’t include the controversial ingrediants, but in the long run I’m happy we found the cause of his isses whether it be an allergy or an intolerence to to BB.

  • Bec

    My dog had pancreatitis, and my vet put him on Purina EN. I didn’t read the list of ingredients until I got home and was quite concerned. I called him, and we talked about it. He said he’d had great success with the food, so I decided to let my dog eat it until the 6-pound bag is gone. He’s been on it for 8 days now and is doing much better, but I have no intention of keeping him on this food. I don’t think these ingredients can possibly be healthy for him longterm. Today, I bought a bag of 4Health Healthy Weight, with 20 percent protein and only 8 percent fat. It has no corn, wheat or soy and is sold only at Tractor Supply. I’ll also be very careful of any treats he gets. In fact, I intend to start making them myself. I don’t anyone who loves their dog should feed this food any longer than it takes the pancreatitis to clear up.

  • quentin

    My dog was on pedigree denta dog treats. & it made
    Her sick. She had to go to the vet & he put her on EN
    Purina dogfood. She loves it. We also buy the EN canned
    Food. She is better now

  • LabsRawesome

    Now that your dog is all better you should move on to a food with better ingredients. Here is a list of low fat foods. http://www.dogfoodadvisor.com/best-dog-foods/suggested-low-fat-dog-food/

  • Pattyvaughn

    Yes EN should have done the trick a year ago when your dog got pancreatitis, but if it has had any trouble since then the EN isn’t working, and if it wasn’t having problems, you can usually move back to a more normal low fat food. You shouldn’t have to keep your dog on EN.

  • Bill

    EN dry appears to have cured my dog’s severe pancreatitis for the past year.

  • jac

    Have none of you read the label of this kibble? Its all garbage you shouldn’t feed any animal, especially your family pet! They cannot rate it because “it claims” its for intestinal problems. Blue Buffalo, amongst many others, do not use crap ingredients and are much more healthy for your pet. Gee, how many Vets get endorsed or kickbacks for promoting this crap!

  • Hi Satsobuddycream,

    There are significantly better foods that are more affordable than your dog’s current prescription diet.

    How long has your dog been on this food and why was it prescribed in the first place?

  • Satsopbuddycream

    my golden is on en i woundering if their is a better dog food for him to be on that is also more affordable than purina en

  • Stlhseeker

     I have used this product for my german shepherd for 8 years and it works wonderful and is shipped on a five week basis from National Pet Pharmacy on line where I found it to be the least expensive .

  • Lgronvall

    A vet may strongly recommend  this brand to feed you’re dog. But as it turns out, this brand is terrible. Just because a vet, or a friend recommends this does not mean it’s manna from heaven. 

    It has terrible ingredient  first of all. Heck, meat isn’t even it’s first ingredient! (HUH? WHY AM I TYPING RED) WHATEVER. oK, TRY A BETTER BRAND. Blue Buffalo, Wellness. Those are the brands i like. They are all natural too. 

  • Big Dog Mom

    My Great Dane/German Shepard mix has been on EN since 5/2012.  This product has been a God send.  He was diagnosed with Pancreatitis and Colitis.  He enjoys this dog food and eats readily.  I mix the canned and dry, and sometimes, will wet it down just to change it up on him.  His GI problems have been under control, with only limited flare ups–when he gets ahold of something he shouldn’t have.  I have to monitor closely on walks, otherwise, he snatches what he can up and eats it.  Otherwise, he’s been perfectly healthy ever since getting on this diet. 

  • dt

    Where do you get EN for $49 for a 32lb bag?

  • Pattyvaughn

    Many people who were told by their vet that their dog had to be on a particular perscription diet have found that if they do a little researsch into what they dog needs to have vs avoid, they can feed their dog a MUCH better diet for MUCH less money. I want more for my dog than to just live. I’m glad you found something that works for you.

  • Julie C.

    You do owners of dogs with digestive (and other) problems a disservice with this kind of review, leaving many to believe that the ingredients in this food are inferior. While I would not feed it to a dog with an allergy to any of the ingredients (for instance many dogs are sensitive to corn), a quality dog food is WHAT KEEPS A DOG ALIVE and for many dogs, this food does. Many digestive diseases, especially Pancreatitis, can be fatal, and very quickly. We learn to think differently about ingredients when there is nothing else a dog can eat that doesn’t cause relapses. I happen to feed my dog a different veterinary formula but it keeps my dog alive. BTW…I do dislike the use of coconut oil in a dog with digestive problems. It aggregates digestion in many dogs. The fat content in EN would be too high for my dog (even though it is lower than many non-prescription commercial foods).

    Please don’t bother to review prescription foods if you are going to scare people away from them. ALIVE vs. DEAD? I’ll take alive.

  • Paulmacs4005

    Hi Juno’s mom,

    Not sure if you can get Now Fresh where you are, but their senior food is very close in protein and fat levels.  It is also a much better quality food.  I’m not sure what this prescription diet has in it that makes it effective, and I’m not a veterinarian, but perhaps someone else on here could give some advice as well.  You could add some canned pumpkin to help with digestion as well.  Good luck!

  • Juno’s Mom

    It’s Sunday, my vet is closed and my Great Dane, an EN eater for the last 5 years, is out of food. I’m looking for a store brand alternative so this doesn’t happen again.

  • Juno’s Mom

    I pay the same. I get it from my vet. When I moved two years ago, I looked at both vet clinics on the island where I now live. One quoted me $84 / bag and the other quoted $67 / bag (the same I paid where I used to live). The $67 / bag slowly rose and is now up to $82.

  • AZApple

    Hi Susanne,
    Some Raw people are emphatic about Raw ONLY but who knows how to balance all the micro minerals & such?? Not me!
    Some people feed raw in a.m. and kibble in p.m. so the dog is getting lotsa raw & less kibble, but the kibble presumably would help to create a “balanced” diet.
    I agree w/Melissa who suggested tripe + fish + veggies alone wouldn’t likely satisfy all your dog’s nutritional needs, so I think adding Iams would be good.
    Perhaps you feed a greater variety of stuff & didn’t take time to mention it, but, same as for humans, variety is the spice of life – and also the way to a balanced diet.
    To answer your question, I don’t think any of us can answer your question. That’s why we submit to commercial diets – so we don’t have to guess at a balanced diet for our dogs when we really don’t know what the needs of a dog are. We figure the commercial diets are the ones with access to the nutritional professionals, right?
    But then there’s the business people who try to cut every corner they can and put out crap-in-a-bag, so we’re left not knowing who to trust.
    I say “Mother Knows Best” and you may want to trust your own instincts. Ask yourself, “Hmmm, what does a dog need?” and I bet you’ll come up with “tripe, fish, veggies PLUS cones & meat of cow, deer, beef, rabbit, mole, rat, mouse, worm, LOL…!”
    What do wild dogs eat? Maybe some roots (sweet potatoes,) fruits (berries,) grasses, maybe lick on one of those clay/mud/mineral places that deer and parrots lick on? Idunno, but I do “know” (read as: “feel quite confidently certain that…”) variety is important in order to get all based covered.

  • lukeydukes

    My dog was on EN canned food after he almost died from pancreatitis. He hated it. I looked for a canned food with really low fat and ran it by the vet. She approved the Avoderm Natural Lite. After Luke’s pancreatitis settled down, we started adding EN kibble. He has been fine. I must add that he gets half a Pepcid 1/2 hour before each meal and has three small meals a day. I also add green beans to his diet. He is eating mostly kibble with just a little Avoderm and the beans.

  • Stephanie

    Just started this dog food yesterday,I don’t know about it though got the canned to mix with the dry and either the cans are old or the food is dry as shit,takes me triple the time to mix it in compared to the canned food I use to use,it should have a little liquid/moisture.

  • Mimi

    I have a Westie-Cocker mix.  He has been on EN (dry and wet) for about 5 years now.  It has been great for him.  It might not merit the best rating on this page, but he loves it and the problems were were having stopped  after starting this diet.  BTW – my little baby turned 17 years old on 4/01/12.  Every day is a treasure!

  • Hockleyglen

    All you people with chronic diarhhea issues, please have your vet test for EPI. 

  • Nicurndls

    Where are you getting your EN from?
    I pay 74-80 a bag for the 32 lb!

  • aimee

    Hi Shelby’s Mom,

    Glad you found a food that is working well with your dog. It is hard to know why it is working. It could be the protein/fat/carb/fiber ratio or because it is highly digestable.

    My own dog with GI problems is doing well on a potato based food whereas previous diets all caused problems.

    The key is to find what works for your individual pet rather than focusing too much on using or not using a particular ingredient as each ingredient has pros and cons.

    Good Luck!

  • Shelby’s Mom

    The EN food has been great for my boxer. She was initially on Merrick and had terrible stomach problems and also had issues with Orijen. I tried California Natural which was horrible and Natural Balance was ok but she still had some occasional stomach issues plus she was not thrilled with the taste of it.

    EN has really been a life saver, but I’d love to switch her to a higher quality food that could still resolve her tummy issues. Any suggestions? Also, from what I’ve read some people say lower protein and potato/grain free are good for dogs with food allergies or sensitivities, but then many of the limited ingredient foods have potato – i’m confused! What are the most important ingredients to look for or try to avoid for dogs with gastrointestinal issues?

  • X0goldie0x

    EN dog food is supposed to have a low protien content. It is only for dogs that can’t digest regular dog food.

  • Susanne

    Hi Melissa. My dog is 18 months old. I have 2 that have been fed exactly the same all the time and the other is fine. Its not that i just wanted to feed tripe and fish but what other things should i have been giving the dog? She gets veggies, etc too and was given iams on ocassion. Can someone please tell me what i should actually be feeding for a proper balanced diet? Thank you

  • melissa


    How old is your dog and why just raw tripe and fish? I am not a raw feeder, but that does not sound balanced to me.

    I have used EN on many occassion as a ‘stop gap” measure and have always had success

  • Susanne

    Ok, my dog has been having a few problems with her toileting and has been getting mucous filled and fresh blood poops. Been to the vets and they are thinking she has colitis so have prescribed this food for her and i got both wet and dry to try. She has previously been fed on a raw tripe diet and different types of fish with rice. I dont particularly like feeding these dog foods but if its best for my dog then i will give it a try. Anyway, first time i gave her it was last night and she seemed to enjoy it much more than her tripe, 2nd lot this morning again she ate quite happily. Has anyone else experienced colitis and this food has helped? Im a bit worried about the menadione if it causes liver toxicity…any more info on this before i discuss with the vet as dont not want my dog to be getting clear of one problem but then getting another. Thanks

  • Eliot

    We rescued our Dalmation mix from a kill shelter 8 years ago. He had major digestive and bowel issues amongst other things. After trying almost every “sensitive” food on the market, our vet suggested EN. At $49 for a 32lb. bag of dry food it is a little pricey but the results are what anyone with a pet would hope for. (Those of you who are paying $67 are getting ripped off!) Our dog is healthy, energetic and has ZERO health issues going on almost 7 years now. I may not be thrilled with the ingredient list, but IT WORKS. From an ingredient standpoint, I agree with two stars, from a having a healthy dog standpoint, I give it five.

  • melissa


    I don’t think any one can argue that the food does not do what it is supposed to. But, I also know that not too many dogs that are otherwise young and healthy need to be on it for life-not even my colitis/IBD or pancreatitis dogs. I would recc finding something a little blander with better quality ingredients to try with your boy. How about something like California Natural …

  • DeborahB B

    My 2 yr old Golden retriever has had the Trots since he was a puppy.. EN has been a God Send !! He had loose poops all the time –we tried everything—finally I have stuck with EN and he has grown to a beautiful big boy.. Besides it working like a gem–I love the smell of the kibble

  • Rachel

    This food is actually highly digestible compared to most dog foods which is why it can be helpful for dogs with GI issues. I tried several other foods before feeding Purina EN to my dog. While his diarrhea did clear up some on the other foods, it continued to be a problem until I switched to EN.
    This food is not meant for perfectly healthy dogs; it’s meant for those with digestion issues. If your dog’s having GI problems, and your vet recommends this food, I think it’s worth a try. It’s too bad that people may read the above review and not even try it.
    Also Sandra, depending on what’s causing your dog’s abnormal stools, she shouldn’t necessarily have to stay on this food for life. I think generally they do, but many prescription diets are also for a specific disease that will continue to get worse like kidney disease.

  • Bob

    Patti W.,

    I’m sure your vet really gives a rip about this website. He/she likely has this information and more at their disposal. They’ll likely laugh after your gone as you are just another person who “read it on the internet, so it must be true.”

  • I see nothing in this food that would make it any better than any other corn-based food for a dog with digestive issues. Nes, did you try Natural Balance LID? I have had several people use NB LID for dogs with constant diarrhea with much success

  • Hi Nes… If you’re feeding this product under the advice of your vet, I’d suggest not mixing it with anything. Just follow your vet’s prescription. Good luck.

  • Nes

    I am a volunteer at a rescue. We have this one german shep dog that he has a diarhia since last November. We tried many things, like meds and food, but nothing helped so far.
    Finaly starting today, he is on strictly EN diet. Personaly I dont like the ingridients in it, but it is worth to try. If it helps we will continue , if not we will be looking for another food. I mixed the food with rice and I have been giving him pure pumpkin for dogs as treats, nothingelse. I ll keep posted if EN works for us. Thank you

  • Sandra

    I have a 9 month old Lab/Shep who for the last few days has had soft to runny bowels. I took her to the Vet and he recommended this product. I asked (the receptionist) if I could purchase it somewhere else and the answer was no, only from a licenced Vet. She asked what size bag I wanted and I asked how long my pet would have to be on the special diet food. She stated once on a prescribed diet, the dog has to stay on it for life. Mind you blood tests were taken to determine the type of suspected infection but but results have not been received yet. I’m a little skeptical about using this prescription diet indefinitely. Her problems started when I changed her food. After reading this article I am now skeptical about this particular prescription diet.

  • melissa

    pam C-

    I am a big believer in using the prescription diets when a medical need calls for them-always have and always will. However, just as I believe in them to correct the problem, I also believe that if I can find a better quality food that does the same thing, I am going to switch to that for the long haul so to speak. I have found that Nutro venison/potatoe has worked wonderfully for dogs with sensitive stomachs to get them back on track, and eventually moving them to something else.

  • Hi Pam… I’m glad to see your dog is responding well to her therapy. However, as my review here clearly states:

    “Even though this is a prescription product, we continue to limit our judgment to the estimated meat content of the recipe as well as the apparent quality of its ingredients. And nothing else.

    “Our ratings have nothing to do with the accuracy of claims made by the manufacturer as to this product’s ability to effectively treat or cure a specific health condition.

    “So, to find out whether or not this dog food is appropriate for your particular pet, you must consult your veterinarian.”

    This Purina veterinary product may be only 2 stars to us, but it’s obviously a 5-star dog food to your pet.

  • Pam Churn

    I was a little shocked after reading the above review for this food. My Golden Retriever was plagued with loose stools and GI problems. About a week ago I thought I was going to lose her with continous vomiting and dehydration. After many tests and IV fluids for 2 days, I essentially took her home with little hope. My vet put her on this food and within 24 hours the vomiting had stopped and now her stools are much more solid and she is back to normal–no stress, wagging tail–and I’m one happy camper. This food is a prescription diet–I would not expect it to have the same properties as your average designer food (which she was on when all this started). If your dog is suffering from life-threatening GI problems, I highly recommend it! Pam C.

  • Hi Patti… Unfortunately, since I’m not a veterinarian and due to the biological uniqueness of each pet, it would be inappropriate for me to provide specific health advice or product recommendations. Please see our FAQ page and our reviews for more information. Or check back for a possible response from one of our other readers.

  • Patti W.

    I was wondering the same thing as the first person. My dog was put on this after several bouts of diarrhea and subsequently several months later being diagnosed with inflammatory bowel disease. I’ve always been very picky about what I feed my animals and was very unhappy when I saw what the food contained. However this review wasn’t up yet. I can’t say it has fixed her issue either. Any suggestions on a brand that would be healthier for a 1 year old Anatolian Shepherd who is still growing AND has inflammatory bowel disease? I know this is a prescription diet but I can’t help but think I’m getting ripped off here. 67 dollars for a 32 lb bag full of fluff. I’m also giving this review to my vet. I can’t help but think he can’t know all this about it.

  • Jonathan

    Who said anything about organic? I think the guy just wants to feed his dog something that doesn’t contain crap like this.

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

    Tell you what, Bob. If you think this is such a good food, then you eat it. I’m sorry, but it doesn’t take a degree to know, just by looking at a dog, what they are optimized to eat. And it takes no feats of mental juggling to know that whole ingredients are better than generic fats and industrial by-products. If this were a $5 food at the Dollar Store, I wouldn’t be nearly as upset about the quality of this trash. I’ll tell you what’s disturbing. It’s that vets abuse the trust that we have for them when they sell us this overpriced junk every time a dog has a loose bowel movement. There are far better options for every health specific need than ANY Purina product.

  • Bob


    So the EN corrected your problem, but you want to try something else? That makes perfect sense.

    Enjoy your designer brand dog food and your diarrhea stained carpets.

    Out of curiosity, what do you consider high quality ingredients? You do know there is no real definiteion for “organic” when it comes to pet foods?

  • Hi Michael… This is a specialized “prescription” product that may be clinically effective for treating your dog. Unfortunately, since I’m not a veterinarian, I cannot provide specific health advice or product recommendations. Please see our FAQ page and our reviews for more information. Or check back for a possible response from one of our other readers.

  • Michael

    My vet switched us to this product after our 3 dogs developed very loose stool for over 3 weeks while feeding Innova adult dog food. While the product corrected that problem I would like a hiugh qaility alternative to this product. Can you suggest products with similiar structure but high quality ingredients?