Shopping for puppy food can be very overwhelming especially for people having their first-ever puppy. Puppies start eating solid food when they’re around 8 weeks old, but they should be gradually introduced to it much earlier. It’s best to start with the best canned puppy food brands to help Fido transition to his new kibble diet.

The Best Canned Puppy FoodThe puppy food selected must be high in protein, calories, vitamins and minerals to ensure that it can adequately support the development needs of a growing pup. Puppies grow at an alarming rate! Because of this rapid growth, they need added nutrients to help their bones, muscles and organs stay strong and healthy.

Before choosing the best canned puppy food, it’s imperative to discuss the topic with your veterinarian. They’ll help you decide on the food that will meet your pup’s needs based on his breed and overall health condition. Unlike with canned dog food for adult canines, puppy foods will require some extra consideration.

After a significant amount of research, we’ve found a few high quality commercial puppy diets. Later in this article we’ll give you more information about these diets, but for now here’s a quick look at the best canned puppy food brands that we’re recommending:

Wet Puppy Food Brands Price Quality Rating
Wellness Complete Health Natural Wet Canned Dog Food $$$ A 4.3/5
Merrick Classic Grain Free Canned Dog Food $$$ A+ 4.2/5
Newman’s Own Premium Canned Formulas for Dogs $$$$ A- 4.3/5
Whole Earth Farms Grain-Free Canned Dog Food $$$ B 4.2/5
Merrick Lil’ Plates Grain-Free Small Breed Wet Dog Food $$$$ A- 4.3/5
Nature’s Recipe Grain Free Wet Dog Food Stews $$$ B 4.3/5
Holistic Select Natural Wet Grain Free Canned Dog Food $$$ C- 4.0/5

* Click on the best wet puppy food brand for more information, prices and details. Or below to read reviews.

When can puppies eat wet food?

A lot of pet owners who just adopted a new puppy are confused, when can puppies eat wet food? You can start feeding your pup canned puppy food when you brought him home after adopting. However, make sure sure to inquire the shelter/breeder what type of food the puppy was fed before. The transition period is very important to avoid stomach upset.

Best Canned Puppy FoodIf your puppy was eating dry kibble before, then you’ll need to gradually change his food. Never switch from one type or even brand of food to another in an instance. Instead, the transition should be done over the period of 7-10 days. Start with 80{700e02215a054a51a93d2126ad34d7b00b8926a8fffa4b5ac06a4d3d9bc00d5e} old food and add 20{700e02215a054a51a93d2126ad34d7b00b8926a8fffa4b5ac06a4d3d9bc00d5e} new food, and then continue to change the percentage in favor of the new food.

The two most common types of commercial dog food for puppies are dry kibble and wet/canned food. In most cases, majority of veterinarians recommend starting off your puppy on dry kibble rather than wet puppy food. This is mostly because dry kibble’s nutrition is easier to calculate and it’s cheaper for the pet owner.

General rule of thumb for feeding puppies is this:

  • Puppies under 6 months of age – 3-4 times daily
  • Puppies over 6 months of age – 2 times daily

This sets a routine for the dog. And especially for puppies, this will make it easier for you to predict when your dog will need to go potty on a regular basis.

When can puppies start eating adult dog food

Growing puppies need to be fed a puppy food diet that has been specifically formulated to meet their unique nutritional needs for a period of approx 1 year. The best canned puppy food will supply all the necessary nutrition. If you feed your puppy a food that is formulated for “all life stages” or adult dogs, his body will be robbed of some of those required nutrients which can result in many different diseases and health problems in adulthood.

There is no science-based definite time frame for feeding the best canned puppy food, according to veterinarians, but your veterinarian can give you advice on the best time to switch your Fido to an adult food. Typically, smaller breeds can be switched to an adult food around 8-10 months of age. However, large breed should not be switched until they are between 12 and 15 months old.

Many veterinarians will also recommend that you feed your puppy 4-5 small meals per day at first. As your dog ages, you can reduce the number of feedings to just 2. Again, this is something that your veterinarian will be able to talk with you about, as they’ll have seen your puppy in person, will know what diet he’s eating and will know his medical history.


Top 7 Best Canned Puppy Food Brands
for small and large breeds

1Wellness Complete Health Natural Wet Canned Dog Food

Wellness Complete Health Natural Wet Canned Dog FoodThe Wellness Complete Health Natural Dog Food Just for Puppy recipe is a naturally-preserved product made from chicken, salmon, sweet potatoes and other premium-quality ingredients. It is available in 6-oz and 12.5-oz cans. This product lists its first ingredient as chicken, and it’s important for a puppy food’s first ingredient to be meat.

For this reason, Wellness Complete Health Natural Wet Canned Dog Food gets the nod of many pet owners and their dogs. Puppies switching from other brands and recipes take to it very well. As long as the food was gradually introduced, it caused no stomach upset and the dogs’ poops were healthy-looking.

best canned puppy foodThe puppies attained their ideal weight at the expected time or age for their breed, and they always seemed interested in their food. These are indications that this Wellness puppy food is doing an excellent job as a puppy’s growing up food.


  • First ingredient is chicken
  • Naturally preserved
  • Includes DHA for brain and eye development
  • Contains no meat byproducts, fillers or artificial preservatives

  • Dog owners who have been feeding this diet to their pet for years mentioned that the consistency has changed from one that was easy to scoop out of the can to complete “mush”
  • Many reviews complained about the lack of quality control with this best canned puppy food and the fact that they received severely dented cans

Most helpful review (read the full Amazon review): “I just started giving my puppy the food from this batch of Wellness Just for Puppies- she usually loves this food. The consistency of the food was liquid and she refused to eat it. Opened 2 other cans from this same batch and same consistency…”


2Merrick Classic Grain Free Canned Dog Food

Merrick Classic Grain Free Canned Dog FoodPuppies have a lot of growing up and exploring to do, so their source of nutrition must be high in protein which is responsible for building muscles. Merrick Classic has several recipes available but this particular recipe, the Puppy Plate, made it to our Top 7 Best Canned Puppy Food list. Meat is its number 1 ingredient – being turkey, chicken and duck. Its other ingredients include sweet potatoes, carrots, peas, and apples. This recipe definitely contains no grains.

This is a product of the USA so pet owners feel confident feeding their puppies with this home-style stew preparation. Merrick Classic Grain Free Canned Dog Food has been most helpful in helping undernourished and underweight puppies survive. In no time at all, these helpless pups were able to attain their ideal weight, eating better, and engaging in activities normal to their age. To prevent soft stool, proper transition must be observed as is the usual practice when introducing new food or diet to dogs. The importance of this cannot be overemphasized since puppies have very sensitive tummies.

best canned puppy foodThe usual comment on this puppy food is that it smells like home-cooked turkey dinner and that a spoonful would show bits of real meat, fruits and vegetables. All these wholesome and authentic ingredients provide an optimally balanced diet that makes puppies noticeably energetic and visibly healthy.


  • Meat is the #1 ingredient in this best canned puppy food
  • Cooked in the USA with no ingredients from China
  • Grain-free with no gluten ingredients
  • No artificial colors, preservatives or flavors

  • As with all of the best canned puppy food products, there are reports that some dogs would not eat this recipe
  • Some pet owners who purchased this food claimed that it was “rotten and moldy” when they received it. One person even said their was larvae crawling on the food when they opened the can

Most helpful review (read the full Amazon review): “My dogs absolutely ADORE this stuff. It does have quite a bit of chicken broth compared to some other high quality canned foods, but that only makes it more palatable and definitely pleasing to the human eye. Full chunks of meat, not some…”


3Newman’s Own Premium Canned Formulas for Dogs

Newman’s Own Premium Canned Formulas for DogsThe first ingredient of Newman’s Own Premium Canned Formula for dogs is turkey, and not just any turkey – organic turkey. The other ingredients are organic chicken, organic brown rice, flaxseed, and other sources of important nutrients. It contains no artificial ingredients, corn or wheat. There are four variants including this Turkey & Chicken recipe, and these are available in 5.5-oz and 12.7-oz cans. This premium dog food is proudly made in the USA by Newman’s Own Organic, a trusted maker of organic products for over 20 years.

Sticklers to clean and organic food were delighted to find Newman’s dog food. It made feeding their pups a lot simpler and more convenient without compromising on the quality. Dogs love Newman’s Own Premium Canned Formulas for Dogs, and since there are several recipes available, the variation keeps them from getting tired of this organic dog food line.

best canned puppy foodOut of the can, this organic blend smells meat, and this makes dogs really crazy for it. Even extremely picky dogs love it. Not all responsibly-prepared dog food brands are this enticing, but this brand apparently is.


  • First ingredient is organic turkey
  • Contains no artificial ingredients, corn or wheat
  • 4 flavors available
  • Made in the USA

  • A few reviewers were not pleased with the smell of this food, saying it smelled like “dead fish”
  • Some pet owners claim that this best canned puppy food gave their pup diarrhea

Most helpful review (read the full Amazon review): “Was surprised but not surprised when this came up in the search for organic chicken dog food. I use a lot of Newman’s other good items, so I trust them with feeding my Dane. She eats an all stages chicken and rice kibble and I use half…”


4Whole Earth Farms Grain-Free Canned Dog Food

Whole Earth Farms Grain-Free Canned Dog FoodThe ingredients list of Whole Earth Farms puppy food starts off with chicken, and then followed by turkey, chicken liver, salmon, peas, carrots, and a lot more real food and herbs. Four recipes are available and all contain only naturally nutritious ingredients. The Puppy recipe is a moist meal perfect for puppies in terms of consistency, nutritional value, and palatability. This product is made in the USA and none of its ingredients are sourced from China.

This preparation is pâté style and dog owners say that they prefer that over the stew style because the meaty content fills the can. That way they get more value for their money. Wholesome food does not need to be expensive, and Whole Earth Farms Grain-Free Canned Dog Food is one example.

best canned puppy foodDogs simply love it. It’s gentle on the stomach, which can be a make-or-break issue for puppies. Once weak little puppies have now become healthy and energetic young dogs, and all of that became possible because they had the right food to begin with. This is a really highly-rated puppy food, but not so high-priced. What a deal!


  • Protein is the first ingredient
  • 4 flavors available
  • Made with natural ingredients
  • Made in the USA with no ingredients from China

  • Some reviewers note that while this is the best canned puppy food, in their opinion, their dog does not like every flavor available
  • A couple of disappointed pet owners said that this food upset their pet’s stomach, resulting in diarrhea 

Most helpful review (read the full Amazon review): “My basenji love this recipe. I mix about a tablespoon with her Merrick Grain Free Real Chicken & Sweet Potato dry kibble. She absolutely loves it. You can see small chunks of the vegetables in it, but it is not chunky since the…”



Merrick Lil’ Plates Grain-Free Small Breed Wet Dog Food

Merrick Lil' Plates Grain-Free Small Breed Wet Dog FoodThis pocket-sized puppy food makes it easier for small breed dogs to eat smaller portions frequently. Smaller portions are easier to digest and because they’re given more frequently, fluctuation in energy levels is avoided. Merrick Lil’ Plates wet dog food has 10 variants in this lineup, but this best canned puppy food is especially prepared for the high-caloric requirement of actively growing small breed puppies.

The first ingredient is deboned chicken, blended with farm-fresh fruits and vegetables, probiotic and prebiotic sources, and enriched with vitamins and minerals. Merrick Lil’ Plates Grain-Free Small Breed Wet Dog Food contains no corn, wheat, ingredients from China, or artificial additives – just plain wholesome natural food sources.

best canned puppy foodThe small serving is just perfect for one meal according to a Yorkie owner. Sometimes they halve it and mix it with dry food. That doubles the number of servings that a pack makes. The dogs are always enthusiastic over it and they’re thriving very well on this diet. It’s very convenient especially when traveling with pets, so this mini dinner is definitely going places!


  • Available in 10 flavors
  • First ingredient is the protein source
  • Made with probiotic and prebiotic sources
  • No corn, wheat or artificial additives
  • No ingredients from China

  • As with all of the best canned puppy food options, there are reports that some dogs do not like eating this food
  • Available in 3.5 ounce sizes, which won’t be suitable for large breed puppies

Most helpful review (read the full Amazon review): “Vwry pleased with these. If I just want to give my greyhound mostly dry, rather then opening a 14oz can and having it leftover, I will give mostly dry and just add one or two of Li’L plates. Most times she does get a…”


6Nature’s Recipe Grain Free Wet Dog Food Stews

Nature's Recipe Grain Free Wet Dog Food StewsThis chicken and turkey stew is made from real chicken, turkey, sweet potatoes and green beans. This wholesome and grain-free meal comes with thick gravy that dogs love. Nature’s Recipe Grain-free Chicken & Turkey Stew is prepared for dogs of all breeds and ages. Only the amount of food fed is varied according to the life stage, age and weight of the dog. Grain-free chicken and venison recipe is also available for variation. One pack contains 24 10-oz cans.

Dog owners want only the best for their pets, so they prefer this because it’s loaded with meaty chunks instead of the pâté -style meal. This high-protein content builds up lean muscles, and the carefully selected vegetables support the dog’s high-energy activities. Indeed, this company has been true to its word that every ingredient in Nature’s Recipe Grain Free Wet Dog Food Stews counts.

best canned puppy foodWhile the meal is nutrient-packed, it is easy on the stomach. It is common for dogs to suffer from tummy issues after the introduction of new food or recipe, so pet owners were pleasantly surprised that their pup experienced none of these. Dogs can’t get enough of this food and it has been very beneficial to them; so though it’s on the pricey side, their humans aren’t really complaining.


  • Formulated for all breeds and ages
  • Grain free
  • Made with real vegetables including sweet potatoes and green beans

  • As with all of the best canned puppy food options, there are reports that some dogs do not like eating this food
  • Some buyers complained that they received severely dented cans in their order

Most helpful review (read the full Amazon review): “ALL four of my dogs (and even the cat who sneaks bites) love this food. I mix it with their dry food. Never have leftovers. That says it…”



7Holistic Select Natural Wet Grain Free Canned Dog Food

Holistic Select Natural Wet Grain Free Canned Dog FoodDogs that don’t take too well to poultry, pork, or meat, find fish as the best protein source for them. Made from salmon, mackerel, and whitefish, this recipe from Holistic Select Natural Pet Foodprovides dogs with a healthful and balanced meal every day. This premium pâté style dog food does not contain grains, corn, soy, wheat, and artificial ingredients. Five other recipes are available with five different protein sources. This product is proudly made in the USA.

The usual dry doggy meals take on new form when topped or mixed with this fish and vegetable medley. Dogs are always excited about Holistic Select Natural Wet Grain Free Canned Dog Food and it definitely turns dreary meals into a big hit. It’s great as topper, but dogs don’t mind eating it as a complete meal. Their wagging tail as they eat their share actually seems to mean that they really don’t mind at all.

best canned puppy foodMost pet owners didn’t just chance upon this product. In fact, they purposely searched for food that didn’t only provide protein and energy, but one that would also provide healthy skin and coat. Their search led them to this holistic food that’s rich in omega 3 and omega 6. In just a few weeks in this diet their pet began displaying markedly improved skin and coat. A few weeks more and they were seeing really healthy skin and enviable coat. The owners couldn’t be any happier or prouder, of course.


  • Made from fish, which is beneficial for dogs who are allergic to poultry, pork or meat
  • Does not contain grains, corn, soy, wheat, and artificial ingredients
  • Available in 5 other recipes that are made with five different protein sources
  • Made in the USA

  • A few pet owners were disappointed after finding out that chicken was used in this recipe without being indicated on the label
  • While they noted that this may be the best canned puppy food for some pets, a few buyers said this food upset their dog’s stomach and gave them diarrhea