Gentle Giants Dog Food: Reviewed

Written by Kristin Hitchcock
Updated: January 5, 2023
© Kaca Skokanova/Shutterstock.com

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Key Points

  • Our choice for the #1 Best Overall Gentle Giants recipe is GENTLE GIANTS Real Beef & Bacon.
  • Gentle Giants was created for giant breed dogs weighing over 100 pounds, but you can feed it to smaller dogs, too.
  • It’s made using all-natural ingredients and added vitamins and minerals, prebiotics, and probiotics.
  • Their recipes include high-quality, rare ingredients like green-lipped mussels.
  • They also include healthy fruits and veggies for nutrients and antioxidants.
  • It’s free from GMOs, artificial colors, flavors, or preservatives.

When actor and animal rights activist Burt Ward’s daughter got two Great Danes he was concerned. He knew that their average life expectancy is only eight to 10 years. So he created Gentle Giants, an all-natural line of dog food, to meet the nutritional needs of giant breed dogs weighing over 100 pounds.

The food is made in Sioux City, IA, using all-natural ingredients and added vitamins and minerals, and no GMOs, artificial colors, flavors, or preservatives.

Gentle Giants produces several types of dog food that are designed for puppies and adult dogs of all sorts. Despite the name, you can feed this food to smaller dogs, as well. However, it is primarily designed to meet the needs of larger canines.

Following is our review of the most popular Gentle Giant dog foods.

  1. GENTLE GIANTS Real Beef & Bacon
    • Filled with vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and supplements
    • Non-GMO, and no fillers, wheat, corn or soy
    • Made with farm-raised beef and bacon
    • Nutritious ingredients like pearled barley, brown rice and oatmeal round out the ingredients
    • Hearty ingredients keep dogs fuller for longer
    Check Chewy Check Amazon
  2. Gentle Giants Canine Salmon Dry Dog Food
    • Grain- and poultry-free
    • Added pre- and probiotics as well as vitamins and antioxidants
    • Ideal nutrition for all breeds and sizes of dogs
    Check Chewy Check Amazon
  3. GENTLE GIANTS Canine Nutrition Chicken
    • Vet-recommended
    • Ingredients include whole fruits and veggies
    • Includes pre- and probiotics to aid with digestion
    • Recipe includes vitamins and minerals, including fatty acids
    Check Chewy Check Amazon
  4. Gentle Giants 90% Chicken Grain-Free Wet Dog Food
    • Contains 90% chicken
    • Contains antioxidant-rich blueberries and cranberries
    • Texture is ideal for senior dogs
    • Easily digestible
    Check Chewy Check Amazon
  5. Gentle Giants 90% Beef Grain-Free Wet Dog Food
    • Pate texture
    • No fillers, wheat, soy, corn, or grains
    • Contains non-GMO fruits and vegetables
    • Added vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants
    Check Chewy Check Amazon

#1. Best Overall: Gentle Giants With Real Beef & Real Bacon Dry Dog Food

This formula includes beef and pork as the only meat-based ingredients. Because this formula doesn’t contain any chicken or other poultry, it works well for dogs that have allergies to these ingredients. Plus, the beef and pork used are extremely high quality and farm-raised.

This recipe includes pearled barley, brown rice and oatmeal, which provide carbohydrates and fiber, so it is not grain-free.

We love that New Zealand green-lipped mussels appear on the ingredient list. This ingredient is extremely high in glucosamine and chondroitin, which may help improve your dog’s joint health. For larger dogs, this support can be vital.

Plus, this formula also includes chelated minerals, improving the overall absorption of these nutrients. The company fortifies the food with omega fatty acids, prebiotics, and probiotics. All of these nutrients support the health of larger dogs particularly, though they can also be helpful for smaller dogs.

We were only able to find three negative reviews for this product. Two reported that their dogs got sick after eating this food. Another said that their dog wouldn’t eat it.

Pros and Cons of Gentle Giants With Real Beef & Real Bacon Dry Dog Food

ProsCons
The formula includes beef and pork as the only meat-based ingredients, making it appropriate for dogs with allergies to chicken and other poultry.Two reviewers reported that their dogs got sick after eating this food.
This recipe includes pearled barley, brown rice and oatmeal, which provide complex carbohydrates and fiber, so it is not grain-free.A sole reviewer said that their dog wouldn’t eat it.
It also includes New Zealand green mussels, which are high in glucosamine and chondroitin, for joint health.
Chelated minerals improve the overall absorption of the nutrients in this dog food.
It’s fortified with omega fatty acids, prebiotics, and probiotics.
Best Overall
GENTLE GIANTS Real Beef & Bacon
  • Filled with vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and supplements
  • Non-GMO, and no fillers, wheat, corn or soy
  • Made with farm-raised beef and bacon
  • Nutritious ingredients like pearled barley, brown rice and oatmeal round out the ingredients
  • Hearty ingredients keep dogs fuller for longer
Check Chewy Check Amazon

2. Best with Salmon: Gentle Giants Canine Nutrition Salmon Dry Dog Food

Many dogs thrive on fish-based food, as it contains more omega-fatty acids. These fatty acids may improve your dog’s skin and coat health, so we particularly recommend salmon-based food for dogs with long fur or skin-related problems.

Salmon meal appears as the very first ingredient in this food. This ingredient features a high amount of protein and fat, as it is basically concentrated salmon. Therefore, it remains a great option for many canines.

On top of salmon, this grain-free formula includes a variety of veggies and fruits. These ingredients provide antioxidants and several vitamins to the food, improving your dog’s overall health. Furthermore, probiotics and prebiotics appear as well.

Therefore, this formula provides all the vital nutrients that your dog needs.

A few reviewers said that their dogs wouldn’t eat it.

Pros and Cons of Gentle Giants Canine Nutrition Salmon Dry Dog Food

ProsCons
This fish-based formula features salmon meal as the first ingredient.Some buyers reported that their dogs wouldn’t eat this food.
This grain-free recipe also includes a variety of vegetables and fruits, which provide antioxidants and vitamins to improve dogs’ overall health.
It’s supplemented with prebiotics and probiotics.
Best Salmon Recipe
Gentle Giants Canine Salmon Dry Dog Food
  • Grain- and poultry-free
  • Added pre- and probiotics as well as vitamins and antioxidants
  • Ideal nutrition for all breeds and sizes of dogs
Check Chewy Check Amazon

3. Best Simple Recipe: Gentle Giants Canine Nutrition Chicken Dry Dog Food

If you’re looking for a simple recipe, try this one. It includes chicken as the main protein source, which works well for most dogs. In fact, the very first ingredient is chicken meal. As a grain-inclusive formula, pearled barley and brown rice also show up early in the ingredient list.

Because grains provide carbohydrates and fiber, many dogs thrive on grain-inclusive foods.

On top of these ingredients, the company fortifies the food with prebiotics and probiotics. Overall, these ingredients help improve your dog’s digestive health.

Twelve fruits and veggies are spread throughout the ingredient list, as well. You’ll find beets, blueberries, cranberries, and other healthy ingredients. All of these add nutritional value to the food.

Some reviewers said that their dogs didn’t like this food. A few reported that their dogs had loose stools after eating this recipe.

Pros and Cons of Gentle Giants Canine Nutrition Chicken Dry Dog Food

ProsCons
Chicken is the main protein source, and chicken meal is the first ingredient.Some pet parents said that their dogs didn’t like this food.
It includes pearled barley and brown rice, which are good sources of complex carbohydrates and fiber.A few reported that their dogs had loose stools after eating this food.
The recipe is fortified with prebiotics and probiotics to support digestive health.
The ingredient list features 12 fruits and vegetables, including beets, blueberries, and cranberries.
Best Chicken Recipe
GENTLE GIANTS Canine Nutrition Chicken
  • Vet-recommended
  • Ingredients include whole fruits and veggies
  • Includes pre- and probiotics to aid with digestion
  • Recipe includes vitamins and minerals, including fatty acids
Check Chewy Check Amazon

4. Best Wet Food: Gentle Giants 90% Chicken Wet Dog Food

Some dogs prefer wet, canned food. Also, canned food is easier for senior dogs, which may have dental issues to eat. It can also entice senior and ill dogs that have lost their appetites to eat. Plus, wet foods provide essential hydration that senior and ill dogs often lack.

As you’d guess, chicken appears as the first ingredient in this grain-free recipe. Chicken broth is also listed as the second ingredient. This ingredient provides extra nutrients and flavor to the food, making it a better option than water alone.

Further down on the list, the company adds salmon oil. This oil raises the omega fatty acid content of the food, which further improves your dog’s joint health. Larger dogs may find this ingredient particularly helpful. For more omega fatty acids, the company adds green-lipped mussels, as well.

We love all the fruits and veggies added to this food. From pumpkin to parsley, all these ingredients provide added nutrition to this formula.

We could only find two negative reviews for this product. The first said that their dog refused to eat it. The other reported that their dog had “soupy stools” after eating this recipe.

Pros and Cons of Gentle Giants 90% Chicken Wet Dog Food

ProsCons
Chicken is the first ingredient in this grain-free recipe and chicken broth is listed as the second.One reviewer said that their dog refused to eat this recipe.
Salmon oil and green-lipped muscles provide omega fatty acids to improve joint health.Another reviewer reported that their dog had “soupy stools” after eating this food.
The recipe includes fruits and vegetables, including pumpkin and parsley, for added nutrition.
Best Chicken
Gentle Giants 90% Chicken Grain-Free Wet Dog Food
  • Contains 90% chicken
  • Contains antioxidant-rich blueberries and cranberries
  • Texture is ideal for senior dogs
  • Easily digestible
Check Chewy Check Amazon

5. Best Beef-Based Wet Food: Gentle Giants 90% Beef Wet Dog Food

Some dogs don’t do great on chicken-based food. In fact, chicken is one of the most common allergens. If this is the case for your dog, we recommend this beef-based, grain-free wet food.

Because it is made with beef as the main meat source, there is no chicken included, at all. Therefore, it works well for dogs that are allergic to chicken.

On top of beef, a variety of fruits and veggies are added. These provide extra nutrients to the food, including antioxidants. For this reason, they raise the overall quality of the food and ensure that your dog is getting everything they need to thrive.

Green-lipped mussels appear near the end of the ingredient list. These contain a lot of omega fatty acids, which many dogs can benefit from.

Three reviewers reported that they found bits of blue “junk” or “plastic” in cans of this food.

Pros and Cons of Gentle Giants 90% Beef Wet Dog Food

ProsCons
The main meat source in this grain-free wet food is beef.Three reviewers said that they found bits of blue “junk” or “plastic” in cans of this food.
It is free from chicken, so it is appropriate for dogs that are allergic to chicken.
The recipe features fruits and vegetables, which provide extra nutrients, including antioxidants.
Green-lipped muscles provide omega fatty acids, for joint support.
Best Beef
Gentle Giants 90% Beef Grain-Free Wet Dog Food
  • Pate texture
  • No fillers, wheat, soy, corn, or grains
  • Contains non-GMO fruits and vegetables
  • Added vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants
Check Chewy Check Amazon

What Type of Breeds is Gentle Giants Best Suited For?

According to the manufacturer, Gentle Giants is best suited for dogs of all ages, breeds, and stages of life.

Choose From Recipes With or Without Grain

If your dog isn’t allergic or sensitive to grains, you may wish to choose a Gentle Giants recipe that includes grains. After all, grains contain complex carbohydrates and fiber, as well as other nutrients.

Gentle Giants is available in grain-free varieties, as well, which are appropriate for dogs that are allergic or sensitive to grains.

Rare, High-Quality Ingredients

Gentle Giants adds a variety of rare ingredients that may benefit your canine, especially larger ones. For instance, their formulas include green-lipped mussels, which may benefit a variety of different dogs thanks to the high omega fatty acid content. Omega fatty acids are known to contribute to joint health.

Natural Ingredients

Because this brand contains only natural ingredients, we recommend it for dogs that have sensitivities. Dogs tend to react better to this formula than to those including lots of artificial ingredients.

Added Prebiotics and Probiotics

All Gentle Giants formulas include prebiotics and probiotics. These provide extra digestion support. If your canine has a sensitive stomach, this brand may be a great option.

Gentle Giants Recalls and Controversies

As of January 5, 2023, no Gentle Giants product has ever been recalled by the FDA. Furthermore, this brand has been around for a while. Therefore, it appears that they utilize safe practices when crafting their food. The odds of them having a recall in the future is unlikely.

Bottom Line

Gentle Giants makes dog food for dogs of all sizes and ages. They include high-quality ingredients that are challenging to find in other foods, like green-lipped mussels. Despite this, they aren’t terribly more expensive than other brands.

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About the Author

Kristin is a writer at A-Z Animals primarily covering dogs, cats, fish, and other pets. She has been an animal writer for seven years, writing for top publications on everything from chinchilla cancer to the rise of designer dogs. She currently lives in Tennessee with her cat, dogs, and two children. When she isn't writing about pets, she enjoys hiking and crocheting.

Gentle Giants Dog Food: Reviewed FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions) 

Can I feed Gentle Giants to smaller breed dogs?

The company advertises that this food works well for dogs of any size. However, the company did design this food specifically for larger dogs, as the owners run a rescue specifically for larger breeds. Therefore, some of the nutrients may not be as helpful for smaller breeds.

Still, this formula contains quality ingredients and works well in many instances. So, you may want to feed it to your small dog, anyway.

Has Gentle Giants ever had a recall?

No. As of January 5, 2023, there has never been an FDA recall of any Gentle Giants dog food product.

Thank you for reading! Have some feedback for us? Contact the AZ Animals editorial team.