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Our devoted dogs are more than just pets; they’re our trusted confidants, loyal companions, and cherished members of the family. And that last point has caused quite a boom in the global pet food industry, according to a recent report from Research and Market

In 2022, the global market for pet food reached $109 billion, with companies like Nestle Purina leading the pack. And the report says much of that growth was driven by pet parents who believe their dogs deserve a high-quality, natural, and delicious diet, just like people do.

This so-called “humanization of pet food” trend has become much more widespread in recent years. But Purina set the stage decades ago when it debuted its first super-premium pet food, Purina ONE. 

Purina ONE Dog Food offers a wide range of natural, nutritionally balanced formulas made with animal proteins as the first ingredient, along with wholesome grains, vegetables, antioxidants, and other essential nutrients. The recipes are designed to help support strong muscles, vitality, a healthy immune system, and whole-body health for dogs of all ages, shapes, and sizes. 

In fact, the company is so confident that Purina ONE can make a visible difference in the life and health of dogs, it encourages pet parents to take its 28-Day Challenge and see for themselves.

Intrigued? To help you discover which Purina ONE formula is right for your pet, we put together a helpful overview of the brand’s dog food formulas, what benefits they offer, and what sets them apart from the competition.

What is Purina ONE? 

dog eating from bowl of food

Purina ONE is a leading brand of dog food and a popular choice among many pet owners. Though the Purina ONE brand was introduced in 1986, the Purina name has a rich history of innovation and excellence in the pet food industry stretching back to 1894.

That’s when the Purina company was founded by William H. Danforth who initially produced feed for farm animals before manufacturing commercial food for pets. In 1926, Purina established a pet nutritional research farm in Gray Summit, Missouri, where researchers studied how to make pet food both incredibly palatable and incredibly nutritious. Their findings helped make Purina a leader in the manufacture of high-quality household pet food…and in innovation. By 1956, Purina introduced the easy-to-use, easier-to-enjoy dry dog food we know today as “kibble.”

Purina ONE offers a variety of wet and dry dog food formulas designed to meet the different nutritional needs of a wide variety of dogs. These include dog foods formulated for dogs of different life stages, breed sizes, and even health needs that require a specialized diet.

“Purina offers a well-balanced diet for all the different stages of a dog’s life as well as a number of breed size-specific foods,” says Dr. Megan Garrison, DVM, a veterinarian in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and owner of PetVet365. “We use Purina routinely in our hospital for both hospitalized pets as well as an optimum choice to be sent home with pets” so they can continue their healthy diet at home. 

Purina ONE dog food formulas use high quality ingredients combined with vitamins, minerals, and nutrients recommended by the brand’s nutrition experts. To date, over 1.7 million pet parents have taken the Purina ONE 28-day Challenge, where they measure the results for 28 days after switching to a Purina ONE formula.

Challenge participants often report changes to their dog’s coat, eyes, and teeth after switching over to a Purina ONE diet. Moreover, increased energy, healthy digestive and immune systems, healthy joints, and more excitement for their food are often reported among dogs participating in the challenge. 

“The 28-day challenge proposed by Purina ONE, in my view, is an effective way for pet owners to observe how a diet switch can impact their pets,” says Dr. Cheri Honnas, DVM, with Honnas Veterinary in Austin, Texas.

”However, it’s important to remember that each dog is unique,” says Honnas. Some changes may take longer to manifest in some pets than others, she adds.

Types of Purina ONE Dog Food 

Walk down any pet food aisle and it’s easy to get overwhelmed with the prospect of choosing the right food for your pup. Even within the Purina brand, there are more than 10 different dog food sub-brands. 

To help pet parents cut through all the confusion, here’s a quick rundown of the three different lines of dog food available from Purina ONE, and what sets them apart. 

Purina ONE Smartblend

Purina ONE dog food Smartblend

This line of diets provides everything a healthy dog needs to thrive and nothing they don’t. Purina ONE’s team of pet experts and nutritionists packed this formula with premium ingredients and absolutely no fillers for naturally smart nutrition. It comes in a variety of palate-tempting wet and dry food flavors and provides the daily nutrition that your dog needs in order to thrive. 

Key Benefits:

  • Highly digestible and made from premium ingredients, so your dog gets the maximum nutrition from every bite.
  • Contains four antioxidant sources to help promote a strong immune system.
  • Packed with zinc, selenium, and vitamins like A and E. 
  • Dry formulas contain natural sources of glucosamine help to support healthy joints.
  • Includes Omega-6 fatty acids, vitamins, and minerals.
  • Dry food formula comes in two yummy flavors dogs love (Chicken & Rice Formula, Lamb & Rice Formula)
  • For dogs that prefer wet food, Purina ONE Smartblend offers Tender Cuts in Gravy (Chicken & Brown Rice Entree, Beef & Barley Entree, Lamb & Brown Rice Entree) or Classic Ground options (Chicken & Brown Rice Entree, Lamb & Long Grain Rice Entree)

Purina ONE +Plus Smartblend

Purina ONE+ bag of dog food

Some dogs have special dietary requirements or restrictions that can make feeding time a little challenging. But these formulas provide a SmartBlend solution that’s specialized to fit the unique needs of a variety of dogs. From large breed puppies to dogs who need digestive support, you’ll find a Purina ONE +Plus formula that fits your pup’s specific needs here. 

“Turning the spotlight onto specialized diets, it’s clear they are carving out a niche in pet care,” explains Honnas. An increased awareness amongst pet owners about the value of personalized nutrition, she says, could be one driving factor. “After all, a Labrador and a Chihuahua have vastly different dietary needs,” Honnas says. “This is where Purina ONE shines, with its wide array of formulas designed to cater to specific needs based on breed size, age, and health status,” 

Key Benefits:

  • Backed by research and made with high-quality ingredients, these formulas are tailored to meet the specific nutritional needs of dogs of various sizes, life stages, and health needs.
  • Delicious animal proteins like chicken, turkey, salmon, or lamb are always the #1 ingredient in dry formulas.
  • Contains 100% nutrition and 0% fillers.
  • Available in a crunchy kibble formula developed to help target specific health needs (Digestive Health, Joint Health, Skin & Coat, and Healthy Weight), life stages (Adult, Healthy Puppy, and Vibrant Maturity for dogs 7+), and breed sizes (Large Breed, Large Breed Puppy, and Small Breed)
  • Classic Ground formulas available in Healthy Puppy (Lamb & Long Grain Rice Entree) and Vibrant Maturity for dogs 7 years and older (Turkey & Barley Entree) as well as a Tender Cuts in Gravy formula targeting Healthy Weight (Lamb & Brown Rice Entree)

Purina ONE True Instinct

Purina ONE True Instinct food for dogs

This is Purina ONE’s high protein line, which is designed to be closer to what nature intended. Each recipe is nutrient-dense and features a high protein level. These research-backed formulas are designed to support strong muscles, healthy joints, and an active lifestyle. It’s important to note that a high protein formula may not be appropriate for all dogs, so please check with your veterinarian before switching your dog to a high protein diet.

Key Benefits:

  • High protein dry formulas contain 30-32% protein content, well above the minimum standards for dog food set by AAFCO.
  • Designed to help support strong muscles, healthy joints, and an active lifestyle.
  • Made without any poultry by-product meal, fillers, artificial flavors, or preservatives. 
  • Plenty of positive reviews from satisfied pet parents.
  • Available in dry dog food formulas that combine crunchy kibble and meaty morsels (With a Blend of Turkey & Venison, With Salmon & Tuna, With Beef & Bison, With Chicken & Duck, With Beef & Salmon)
  • Wet dog food formulas available in classic ground or tender cuts in gravy options, made with wholesome grains or grain free, in a wide range of palate-pleasing flavors (With Turkey & Venison, With Chicken & Duck, With Beef & Bison, With Beef & Wild-Caught Salmon) 

Which Purina ONE Dog Food Formula is Right for Your Dog? 

dog licking a bowl of food

“Selecting the right Purina ONE formula can feel akin to cracking a code,” notes Honnas. The secret, she says, lies in understanding your dog’s unique needs and aligning them with the appropriate product. 

For instance, a young, robust dog might thrive on the Everyday Nutrition range, while the Purina ONE Smartblend could better serve older dogs or those with specific health needs. “Your vet can guide you to the optimal diet, but keenly observing your pet for changes in energy, coat condition, digestive health, and weight can also provide valuable insights,” Honnas adds. 

And when it comes to choosing the right Purina ONE formula, Dr. Michael Thompson, DVM, a licensed veterinarian and expert in animal nutrition, says this depends on factors such as age, size, and overall health of the pet.

Honnas says to think of transitioning your dog’s diet as you would starting a new fitness regimen— you don’t sign up for a full marathon on day one. “Begin by blending a bit of Purina ONE with your dog’s current food and slowly increase the proportion over a couple of weeks,” she notes. This gradual change gives your dog’s system time to adjust and makes the dietary shift a smoother process.

Garrison recommends a transition over a 10-day time period. “You start with 1/4 the amount of the new food with 3/4 the amount of the old food and feed this for a couple of days. After the initial 2 days, continue to increase the amount of the new food while decreasing the amount of the old few until the complete transition is completed. Again, this takes about 10 days for a full transition,” she says.

As yearly routine bloodwork is the key to diagnosing disease early, Garrison stresses that it’s important to have your pup checked at least annually with your veterinarian. “Other things that you can watch for at home include any change in behavior, increased drinking/eating/urination, or really anything that just doesn’t seem right for your pet means it is time for a visit to your local veterinarian,” she notes. These could all be signs that your pet may be battling a condition that may require additional care.

And remember, your veterinarian should have the final say in what type of food you select. “While Purina ONE can be an integral component of a pat’s health journey, it’s not a silver bullet,” says Honnas. “After all, each dog is different, and a diet that works wonders for one might not suit another.”

The author received compensation from Vetstreet for their services in writing this article.