Is Dehydrated Dog Food the Equivalent to Canned When Measuring?

Is a cup of dry dog food the same as a cup of wet dog food?
Jupiterimages/liquidlibrary/Getty Images

All dog owners know that the amount of food they should feed their pet depends on the dog's age, size and activity level. But do you also need to take into account whether you're feeding wet or dry dog food. It's important to consider whether measurements for wet and dry dog food are truly the same, as overfeeding your dog can lead to weight and health issues.

The Verdict

Dehydrated dog food and canned dog food are not the same when you measure them out. That’s because wet dog food is more dense and fills more space than dehydrated dog food. What’s more, different varieties of dog food differ in their calories and nutritional benefits. For example, dry dog food usually contains more grains and preservatives. These nutritional benefits make it difficult to compare wet and dry dog food based on serving size alone.

Canned Dog Food

Canned dog food has both more protein and more moisture than dry dog food. Many dogs also find it more palatable than dehydrated dog food. It is easy to store, and it has a long shelf life when it is unopened. The downsides are that it causes some dogs to gain weight more easily, and it has a relatively short shelf life after being opened.

Dehydrated Dog Food

Dehydrated dog food is generally a cheaper option than canned dog food. It is also easy to store and has a much longer shelf life than canned food once opened. Additionally, it is good for your dog’s teeth, gums and bowel movements. The downsides of this feeding choice are that some varieties are sprayed with animal fat, which is both unhealthy and unnecessary. Dehydrated food also tends to be higher in gluten because of its grain content. There is very little gluten in a dog's natural diet, and some vets argue that eating too much gluten can have negative effects on your dog's overall health.

Serving Size Matters

Overfeeding or feeding your dog unhealthy food is a huge problem. Overweight dogs can suffer from serious health issues, including diabetes, breathing problems and joint damage. If you’re worried about your dog’s health and the amount of food they’re eating, talk to your vet about how much your dog should be eating based on your pet’s age, weight and activity level. You also can ask your vet to recommend the type of food he thinks would be best for your dog.