From an ingredient standpoint, I cannot recommend this dog food. While it is a good value for dog food in a smaller package and beef is the first ingredient, there are too many fillers and artificial colors. At this price, there are better options. You also have to consider that if you have a small dog, they don’t eat much, so feeding them a more expensive dog food is not a huge price difference overall.
Purina Beneful Incredibites is no doubt a popular dog food for those with small or toy breeds. Like all the Beneful dry dog foods, this one has some questionable ingredients.
When the use of artificial colors is questioned Purina defends their choice by saying that although there is no evidence to show that dogs can see color that well, that appearance matters to the dog parent’s buying the food so they use FDA approved artificial colors to make dog food more consistent in appearance and more appealing to people. Sorry Beneful, but artificial additives just for the benefit of people is in no way “Beneful” to our pooches. There is a lot of controversy about artificial colors and their effects on humans and dogs alike.
Corn, Wheat, and Soy
Too much grain is a cause for concern in any diet. GMO corn being the second ingredient of this food is enough to make ScoutKnows question the quality. Furthermore, corn is the fifth ingredient. The wheat and soy contribute more cheap fillers to this dog food.
By-Products & Digest
There is a lot of by-products in this dog food. While there is some regulation of what by-products are allowed in dog foods, they do raise a red flag because standards can vary so much based on the dog food company. Purina no doubt has a good reputation but it is hard to be sure exactly what they mean when they say by-products and digest.
Positive Aspects Of Beneful
To be fair, there are far worse dog foods out there and Purina does have an excellent reputation. 99% of their ingredients are sourced in the United States. The exception is a few vitamins and minerals they cannot get in sufficient quantity in the USA.
- Beneful does have beef as the first ingredient which is far better than a grain. At 27% protein, a bag goes a long way.
- Easy to find online, at major retailers, and grocery stores.
- Has a few vegetables.
- Dogs like the flavor and the kibble is made for a small dog’s mouth.
- The bag is resealable so you can buy a big bag without fear it will go stale if you are only feeding 1-2 small dogs. Buying a larger bag offers considerable savings on this inexpensive dog food.
Beef, Whole Grain Corn, Barley, Chicken By-Product Meal, Corn Gluten
Meal, Whole Grain Wheat, Rice, Beef Tallow Preserved with
Mixed-Tocopherols, Soybean Meal, Turkey By-Product Meal, Glycerin, Egg
and Chicken Flavor, Oat Meal, Calcium Carbonate, Salt, Poultry and Pork
Digest, Mono and Dicalcium Phosphate, Potassium Chloride, Dried Carrots,
Dried Peas, Vitamins [Vitamin E Supplement, Niacin, Vitamin A
Supplement, Calcium Pantothenate, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride (Vitamin
B-6), Vitamin B-12 Supplement, Thiamine Mononitrate (Vitamin B-1),
Vitamin D-3 Supplement, Riboflavin Supplement (Vitamin B-2), Menadione
Sodium Bisulfite (Source of Vitamin K Activity), Folic Acid, Biotin],
Minerals [Zinc Sulfate, Ferrous Sulfate, Manganese Sulfate, Copper
Sulfate, Calcium Iodate, Sodium Selenite], Choline Chloride, L-Lysine
Monohydrochloride, Red 40, Yellow 5, Yellow 6, Blue 2, Garlic Oil.
Pet food ingredients, nutritional values, and the way they are labeled for consumers are monitored by several organizations in the United States including the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the NGO, Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO).
Each year the AAFCO publishes two sets of nutritional minimum standards for dog food intended to help specify if a food is suitable for:
1. Dogs in the growth & reproduction phases of life
2. Adult dogs maintaining a healthy weight and activity level
3,623 kcal/kg, 366 kcal/cup
|Nutritional Component||Value||Meets AAFCO Growth & Reproduction Standards||Meets AAFCO Adult Maintenance Standards|
|CRUDE PROTEIN||27.0% min||–||–|
|CRUDE FAT||13.5% min||–||–|
|CRUDE FIBER||4.0 % max||–||–|
|CALCIUM (CA)||1.1 % min||–||–|
|SELENIUM (SE)||0.2 mg/kg min||–||–|
|VITAMIN A||12,500 IU/kg min|
|VITAMIN E||150 IU/kg min|
* – indicates not yet analyzed
Depending on your dog’s size and activity level, they may need more or less food in their daily feeding amounts.
|Weight||Daily Feeding (Cups)|
|3-12 LBS||1/2 – 1 1/4|
|13-20 LBS||1 1/4 – 1 3/4|
|21-35 LBS||1 3/4 – 2 1/2|
|36-50 LBS||2 1/2 – 3 1/4|
|51-75 LBS||3 1/4 – 4 1/4|
|76-100 LBS||4 1/4 – 5|
|100+ LBS||Add 1/3 cup for every 10 lbs over 100 lbs|
Transition your dog from their previous food gradually over the course of seven to ten days.
Beneful offers balanced nutrition but it is your typical grocery store dog food that is trying to appeal to the masses. There are better options out there such as Diamond Brand or Taste Of The Wild. Diamond Brand is comparable in price while Taste Of The Wild is more expensive but it is grain free and offers more nutrition per cup so you will find that the cost difference is minimal. I have found that pet foods with more fillers result in them having a bigger appetite than if they are getting a lot of good proteins, fats, and oils with meat and veggies being the primary source. For pet parents concerned about GMOs in food, this is not a dog food they are going to want to try out.
If you like to check other Beneful products, check out our review for Beneful dog food products.