Taste of the Wild vs. Blue Buffalo –In-depth Brand Comparison [2019]

Your pet is not just an animal, but a companion—a friend—and taking care of your best friend comes with responsibilities, which involves more than just feeding them.

Pet food has evolved over the years and is an integral part of keeping your pet healthy. Before choosing a brand, you should consider various factors, including brand history, quality of ingredients, food safety, and cost.

Top Taste of the Wild vs. Blue Buffalo Pet Food

That’s where our Taste of the Wild vs. Blue Buffalo review comes in. We will focus on these two pet food brands and explore their products in-depth, highlighting what makes them so exceptional. So, without further ado, here’s everything you need to know about these two brands to help you make the right decision for your friend.

 

Taste of the Wild vs. Blue Wilderness – The Brands and their Bestselling Products

These two pet foods have several tailored products for both cats and dogs. Let us look at some top attributes, features, and bestselling products for both brands.

 

High Prairie Roasted Venison and Bison

This High Prairie recipe formulation from Taste of the Wild is made using real meats like bison and venison, along with legumes, fruits, veggies, and probiotics. It is a grain-free formula primarily developed to boost your dog’s development and energy levels.

 

Key Features

  • 32% protein
  • 4% crude fiber
  • 18% fat
  • Free-range bison and venison to mimic a wild diet
  • Superfoods for antioxidants and immune health
  • Fatty acids for coat health
  • Contains dried chicory root
  • 100% grain-free

 

Dogs This Food is Best for

This is a high protein blend best for working or active dogs. It may not be suitable for indoor or older dogs with reduced activity levels.

 

What We Like

  • High meat content provides premium protein
  • Rich source of carbohydrates even though it is grain-free
  • It comes in different sizes, which allows you to buy it according to your budget
  • Affordable

 

What We Don’t Like

  • Slightly low in omega fatty acids
  • Contains vegetable by-products

 

High Prairie is the ideal fresh diet for your dog with premium proteins and carbohydrates. It is made using easily digestible grain-free carbohydrates. On the flip side, some dogs are allergic to chicken, which is the primary source of protein in the formula. However, the number of dogs allergic to chicken is negligible, which makes this negative side insignificant.

 

Our Rating: 4.8/5

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Sierra Mountain Premium Dry Dog Food with Real Meat

Taste of the Wild’s Sierra Mountain is a premium dry dog food with moderate protein and fat content and average carbohydrate content. The formula also has high-quality ingredients, including lamb meal, peas, and sweet potatoes, to provide energy. The extensive range of ingredients may make it unsuitable for dogs with sensitivities, but for pets without issues, this formula is reasonable, and also quite affordable.

 

Key Features

  • Contains real lamb and lamb meal
  • 25% protein
  • 15% fats
  • 5% crude fiber
  • 10% moisture content
  • 100% grain-free

 

Dogs This Food is Best for

With more moderate protein levels and higher fat, Sierra Mountain is great for indoor or older dogs with weight issues that do better with easily digestible kibble.

 

What We Like

  • Highly digestible with proprietary probiotics
  • Added fruits, vitamins, and antioxidants
  • Fatty acids for coat health
  • Very affordable

 

What We Don’t Like

  • Too high in vegetable by-products
  • Contains chicken, which could cause allergies in some dogs

 

The protein levels in this dog food are adequate to provide for muscle growth with excellent levels of lamb and ocean fish meal, but the carbohydrate levels are much higher than we’d like it to be.

 

Our Rating: 4.1/5

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Rocky Mountain Dry Cat Food Feline Formula with Roasted Venison and Smoked Salmon

Rocky Mountain is a top-quality dry cat food with above-average protein and fat content and low carbohydrate content, ideal for cat nutrition.

It contains roasted venison, smoked salmon, and chicken meal as well as sweet potatoes and peas. The variety of ingredients may make it unsuitable for cats with sensitivities, but most cat owners have reported no serious concerns.

 

Key Features

  • High protein ingredients with venison, chicken and smoked salmon
  • 42% protein
  • 3% crude fiber
  • 18% fats
  • 10% moisture content
  • Fatty acids for coat health

 

What We Like

  • High-quality meats and fish
  • 100% grain-free
  • Contains no harmful ingredients

 

Cats This Food is Best for

This food offers balanced nutrition great for most cats, though as mentioned, if you have a picky eater or a cat a sensitive stomach, an option with fewer ingredients may be better

 

What We Don’t Like

  • Slightly low omega fatty acids
  • Contains vegetable by-products

 

The Rocky Mountain recipe formulation is suitable for most cats, as not many are allergic to chicken. It has a very high protein content, moderate vegetable content, and contains no harmful ingredients. This makes it an ideal cat food recipe, despite the vegetable content, which mainly acts as fillers.

 

Our Rating: 4.7/5

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Blue Buffalo Wilderness Rocky Mountain Recipe Healthy Weight Red Meat

Blue Buffalo’s Wilderness recipe is made with beef, lamb, venison, and chicken meal, and is a high –protein food that your dog will look forward to eating. Blue Buffalo understands that dogs have a wild spirit and a meat fantasy to satisfy their inner wolf. That is why they came up with this protein formula that also contains insignificant filler ingredients like pea protein and tapioca starch.

The product does not contain any artificial preservatives, artificial colors, or indistinguishable meat ingredients.

 

Key Features

  • 30% protein
  • 10% fats
  • 10% crude fiber
  • 10% moisture content
  • 42% crude carbohydrates to boost energy levels

 

Dogs This Food is Best for

This high protein, grain-free blend is wonderful for working or active dogs with grain sensitivity. It is fairly rich though and may not work well for dogs with sensitive stomachs in general.

 

What We Like

  • Doesn’t contain any traces of artificial ingredients, spices, or preservatives
  • It is 100% grain-free, reducing the risk of health complications
  • Contains life source bits, vital for supporting immune and overall health
  • The natural formula that is free of preservatives and colors

 

What We Don’t Like

  • Some dogs are allergic to chicken, which is one of the main ingredients
  • Contains powdered cellulose, which is considered controversial by some pet nutrition experts

 

Rocky Mountain Recipe has balanced ingredients which are healthy for your dog. The high levels of carbohydrates and crude proteins keep your dog healthy and active. However, the chicken used in its manufacture might result in allergies in some dogs, something to bear in mind.

 

Our Rating: 4.2/5

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Blue Buffalo Life Protection Formula Adult Natural Dry Dog Food for Adult Dogs with Chicken and Brown Rice

Blue Buffalo has a wide range of products and recipe formulations, and one of its most popular for adult dogs is this chicken and rice dog food recipe. Life Protection is one of the premium ranges this brand provides, and it does include some grain, but has a definite focus on high-quality meat ingredients and brown rice.

Chicken, chicken fat, and chicken meal are the other core ingredients present and provide animal protein and fat. Barley, brown rice, and oatmeal contain carbohydrates and fiber. Small portions of legumes and potatoes are also present but in insignificant amounts.

 

Key Features

  • 24% protein
  • 14% fats
  • 4% crude fiber
  • 10% moisture content
  • Fatty acids for a healthy coat
  • Deboned chicken to provide protein
  • Flaxseed and cranberries offer antioxidants and omega oils

 

Dogs This Food is Best for

With the addition of brown rice, this formula tends to be a bit gentler on tummies but does contain grains. If you have a dog that can handle those grains and is a bit less active, this is an excellent choice.

 

What We Like

  • Good protein levels to build muscle
  • Contains life source bits to support immune and overall health
  • Natural dog food with no additives

 

What We Don’t Like

  • Has tomato pomace as a source of soluble fiber, which some pet nutritionist consider filler
  • Some dogs may have trouble digesting grain, especially after an illness

 

This recipe has moderate protein and fat content, but its carbohydrate content is on the higher side due to the rice content.

 

Our Rating: 4.3/5

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Blue Freedom with Chicken Wet Cat Food for Kittens

Kittens need nutritious meals to grow and thrive, and this formula meets all those sensitive growth requirements. Packed with real deboned chicken, it doesn’t have any grain, fillers, or meat by-products.

Other nutrients include cranberries, carrots, and other similar superfoods to boost energy levels, boost immune health, and provide plenty of protein for muscle growth.

This cat food is also quite affordable, meaning you can feed it to your kitten for longer.

 

Key Features

  • 10% protein
  • 7% fats
  • 5% crude fiber
  • 78% moisture content
  • No poultry by-products
  • 100% grain-free
  • Fatty acids and DHA for coat health

 

Cats This Food is Best for

As mentioned in the name, this food is aimed at kittens, but can also be given to nursing mothers with higher caloric needs.

 

What We Like

  • A protein-rich recipe with cranberries for muscle growth and urinary health
  • Natural fibers to push hairballs through the digestive tract
  • Limited ingredients to prevent allergies
  • No artificial colors or preservatives

 

What We Don’t Like

  • It can cause nausea in some kittens

 

An overall excellent recipe formulation for growing kittens. It contains absolutely no artificial colors or preservatives and has complex carbohydrates to help your kitten boost their energy.

 

Our Rating: 4.9/5

CLICK HERE FOR BEST PRICE

 

Understanding Pet Food

The modern pet needs more than just meat to thrive. Other nutrients such as greens and complex carbohydrates to support their overall health are necessary too. Pet nutrition experts observed this trend and formulated foods rich in raw meats, green vegetables, bones, and other nutritional supplements.

Did you know that Americans spend as much as $9 billion on pet food every year? That’s an insanely high amount, but it’s well spent.

 

Benefits of Quality Pet Food

More Energy

Your pet’s digestive system is not strong enough to digest over-processed foods. Natural, high-nutrient foods, like Taste of the Wild or Blue Buffalo, give your pet more energy. These foods are made using fresh ingredients which are easily digestible, and as a result, your pet will be a great asset to you and probably live longer.

 

Healthier Coat

Fresh and natural pet foods contain active ingredients such as zinc, fatty acids, omega-3 and omega-6 oils, and B vitamins, as well as natural ingredients like grains, fats, and protein. Protein breaks down into amino acids, like leucine, arginine, and tryptophan. Dogs and cats essentially need to consume ten amino acids at the very least to survive, and proteins contribute to this intake.

Pet food nutrients are easily absorbed, unlike homemade meals which may contain such nutrients in trace quantities. Your pet is likely to develop silky and glossy fur if they regularly eat high-nutrient and well-formulated pet foods.

 

Longer Life

Specially formulated pet foods strengthen your pet’s immune system. Just like humans, pets that have stronger immunity live longer. The average lifespan of a dog is 13 years, for example, and tasty meals give them a superior quality of life, preventing ailments like allergies, arthritis, and cancer.

 

Prevent Ailments

Giving your pet quality food is one way to make them live a satisfying and fulfilled life. Your pets are part of the family and deserve healthy nutrition too. Over-processed foods tire them and may adversely affect their overall fitness. To avoid unnecessary visits to the vet, you should, as much as possible, give your pet a nutritious and fresh diet.

 

 

Taste of the Wild vs. Blue Buffalo – Similarities and Differences

There are many similarities and differences when comparing Taste of the Wild vs. Blue Buffalo, but their main highlighted features include

  • They both have a high percentage of crude proteins in both dry and wet food products
  • They both contain trace amounts of crude fiber, less than 8% to be precise, to reduce the risk of cancer and other digestive tract ailments
  • Both have a high level of crude fat to reduce the effects of prostaglandins and inflammation

Taste of the Wild and Blue Buffalo are market leaders in pet food production. To keep up with the growing market, they have both come up with different components in their recipes, which differentiate them from each other.

 

Ingredients

Taste of the Wild formulates their products to resemble your pet’s ancestral diet. Its products are made using high-quality and natural ingredients like venison, lamb, and chicken, which are first smoked to make the food more appealing to your pet.

They also consider your pet’s life stage and formulate their recipe’s depending on whether your pet is a puppy, adult, senior, pregnant, or nursing. Another unique feature with Taste of the Wild is that they don’t use chemical components in their food and use purified water in the manufacturing process.

Blue Buffalo products follow a different line of thought. They prefer exclusively using a real source of high-quality proteins. Their recipes are 100% grain-free, but contain both omega fatty acids, antioxidants, and vitamins known in their product descriptions as “life source bits.” In our opinion, these features give Blue Buffalo a distinct edge over Taste of the Wild.

 

Dry Dog Food Taste of the Wild Blue Buffalo Wet Dog Food Taste of the Wild Blue Buffalo
Crude Protein 32% 28% 45% 40%
Crude Fiber 5% 7% 5.5% 7.5%
Crude Fat 18% 15% 22% 25%
Dry Cat Food Taste of the Wild Blue Buffalo Wet Cat Food Taste of the Wild Blue Buffalo
Crude Protein 41% 37% 44% 45%
Crude Fiber 3% 6% 8% 8%
Crude Fat 18% 16% 16% 25%

 

Product Lines

Both companies have quite a variety for people to choose but based on very different philosophies and nutritional values, which makes it easier to choose foods that fit your pet and your budget.

Blue Buffalo

Pet Food Lines for Both Canine and Feline Needs

Line Protection Made with fine natural ingredients
Freedom 100% grain-free
Basics Limited ingredients for pets with sensitivities
Wilderness Made with high meat content
Natural Veterinary Scientifically formulated by vets to manage pets with health issues

Taste of the Wild

Pet Food Lines for Both Canine and Feline Needs

Canine Product Lines
Angus Beef Limited Ingredient Formula For dogs with sensitivities
Appalachian Valley For small breeds with venison and chickpeas
High Prairie and High Prairie Puppy Bison in gravy or roasted bison and venison
Pine Forest Venison and legumes
Sierra Mountain Lamb in gravy or roasted lamb
Southwestern Canyon Beef in gravy or wild boar
Taste of the Wild Prey Limited ingredient recipe with salmon or turkey
Pacific Stream and Pacific Stream Puppy Salmon in gravy or smoked salmon
Wetlands Fowl in gravy or roasted fowl
Feline Product Lines
Angus Beef Limited Ingredient Formula For cats with sensitivities
Canyon River Trout and salmon in gravy or roast salmon and trout
Lowland Creek Roasted quail and duck
Rocky Mountain Smoked salmon and roasted venison
Turkey Limited Ingredient Formula For cats with sensitivities

 

Price Comparisons

When it comes to pricing, several factors play out. For instance, prices vary by the retailer and your location.

Although the two brands have the same price range, Blue Buffalo, on average, is more costly than Taste of the Wild, and wet foods are costlier than dry foods.

Dry Dog Food Taste of the Wild Blue Buffalo Wet Dog Food Taste of the Wild Blue Buffalo
Per Pound $1.86 $2.61 Per Pound $2.79 $4.29
Dry Cat Food Taste of the Wild Blue Buffalo Wet Cat Food Taste of the Wild Blue Buffalo
Per Pound $2.29 $3.88 Per Pound $4.26 $5.54

 

Head to Head Comparison Table – Taste of the Wild vs. Blue Buffalo

Product Feature

Canine and Feline Pet Food

Taste of the Wild Blue Buffalo
Top Ingredients Venison, lamb, and chicken for dog food

Salmon, trout, and fowl for cat food

Bison, chicken, and turkey for dogs

Salmon and fowl for cats

Philosophy Recipe formulations based on your pet’s ancestral diet Recipe formulations based on real protein, 100% grain-free on some products, and include “life source bits” like vitamins, and antioxidants
Product Lines Nine canine and five feline product lines tailored with unique ingredients to meet your pet’s specific dietary needs Five main products lines tailored with unique components to meet your pet’s specific nutritional needs and life stages
Recipe Variations 14 recipes for dogs – 9 dry and 5 wet

4 recipes for cats – 2 dry and 5 wet

186 recipes for dogs – 85 dry and 101 wet

87 recipes for cats – 40 dry and 47 wet

Price per pound Averages $2.3 for dog food

Averages $3.27 for cat food

Averages $3.45 for dog food

Averages $4.71 for cat food

Product Recalls and Safety Once in the last 15 years 9 times in the last 15 years
Controversial Ingredients Canola oil, pea protein, and tomato pomace Garlic, cellulose, caramel, dried tomato pomace, and pea protein concentrate
Country of Manufacture Manufactured by Diamond Pet Foods in plants located in Missouri, California, and South Carolina All treats, dry, and wet food are manufactured locally except the BLUE Chomp and Chew Treat, which is made in Ireland.

 

Taste of the Wild

Brief History

Taste of the Wild is a US-based dog food manufactured by Diamond Pet Foods Inc. The company began in 1970 and first manufactured livestock feeds. It was not until 2007 when they started to produce a product line for dogs.

 

 

According to the company, they are focused on ensuring that they produce premium products based on a dog’s ancestral diet. Dogs fall in the same category as the wolf, which means their diet is similar. You can choose either the dry or canned food for both cats and dogs.

They’ve had only one product recall in the past 15 years for an occurrence of salmonella in May 2012. A lawsuit has been filed, however, as of February 2019, claiming the pet food was as quoted, “negligent, reckless, and/or intentional practice of misrepresenting, failing to test for, and failing to fully disclose the risk and/or presence of heavy metals, toxins, Bisphenol-A.”

 

Blue Buffalo

Brief History

When the Bishops came up with the idea of making pet food in 2003, they knew what all pet owners wanted, and actualized this dream in 2017 by coming up with Blue Buffalo in memory of their dog Blue. That dream ended up becoming one of the biggest companies in the holistic pet food industry.

 

The company recorded $1 billion in sales in 2017 alone, which attracted the attention of General Mills, who eventually bought it out for $8 billion. Blue Buffalo has five product lines, tailored to pets dietary and life stage needs.

It is among the leading holistic pet food brands in the US, using purely natural ingredients as well as real meat sourced locally to create the highest quality foods. Additionally, they don’t’ use unnecessary fillers, meat by-products, corn, wheat, soy, artificial colors, flavors, or preservatives. Blue also uses what’s known as ‘chelated minerals.’ These minerals are attached to easily absorbable amino acids to guarantee maximum absorption rate.

One disturbing fact is that they’ve had 9 product recalls in the last 15 years for incidences of salmonella, propylene glycol, mold, and melamine, among other substances. Here are some instances:

 

October 2010 –suspected toxic vitamin D levels

 

November 2015 – salmonella contamination

 

May 2016 – mold

 

February 2017 –suspected aluminum metals

 

March 2017 – extra-high thyroid hormone levels

 

April 2017 – melamine contamination

 

They’ve also been embroiled in a lawsuit accusing some of their products of having unacceptable lead levels, but the suit was dismissed as of March 2018. They faced another lawsuit from Purina in 2014 accusing them of false advertising for including meat by-products in some of their foods, despite advertising the opposite.

 

Final Thoughts

From our extensive research on Taste of the Wild vs. Blue Buffalo pet food brands, several similarities and differences stand out. Both are, without a doubt, exceptional pet food brands who are careful to manufacture high-quality foods for your best friend.

Taste of the Wild follows ancestral diets and believe animals should retain these eating habits. Blue Buffalo pays attention to specific dietary needs depending on a pet’s health needs and life stage.

In our opinion, if it’s quality and fine ingredients you’re after, recipe variation, or you are concerned for your pet’s particular needs at a specific stage in their life, say if they’re pregnant or nursing, then choose Blue Buffalo.

If its product variety and affordability that appeals to you, then definitely go for Taste of the Wild. Pound for pound they’re more affordable and have had significantly less product recalls in the last 15 years.

We favor Taste of the Wild for affordability, variety, and product safety.

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