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Wet Vs Dry Foods

A guide to comparing wet and dry foods

Comparing Wet and Dry Foods

When looking at wet and dry food, one is not better than the other. With any food you want to look for ingredients that are of a high quality, easily digested and suit your individual dog. The nutrients levels are also important as you don’t want to feed a high energy food to a couch potato!


Many owners mix wet food and dry food together. This is completely fine as long as we adjust their feeding amounts accordingly. As a rough guide, 10g of the Burns dry food is the equivalent to 40g of the Burns wet food.


How do I compare the nutrients in wet and dry foods?

There is often confusion when comparing the contents of a dried food to moist or wet foods. For example a dry food diet can have a protein content of 18.5%, however a can of dog food may state a protein level of 8%, which obviously appears much less.

This protein level is not comparable with the dry food because it does not take into consideration the dry matter or moisture content of the food.

Typical wet canned food analysis:

  • Protein 8%
  • Fat 6%
  • Moisture 75% (dry matter is 25%)

Typical dry food analysis:

  • Protein 20%
  • Fat 10%
  • Moisture 10% (dry matter is 90%)

The canned food states a moisture (water) content of 75%. This means all the nutrients in the food are in the other 25%. This 25% is called dry matter.

Canned dog food:

  • % of protein: 8 ÷ 25 x 100 = 32% protein on a dry matter basis
  • % of fat: 6 ÷ 25 x 100 = 24% fat on a dry matter basis

Dry dog food:

  • % of protein: 20 ÷ 90 x 100 = 22.2% protein on a dry matter basis
  • % of fat: 10 ÷ 90 x 100 = 11.1% fat on a dry matter basis
  • To properly compare protein and fat levels in dry/wet food they must be calculated on a dry matter basis

You can view our full range of dry dog food here or check our wet dog food range here.

Make a paws-itive change with Burns

Get in touch with the Burns Health and Nutrition Team for individually tailored advice on the right food type and amounts for your dog.

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