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Blue Buffalo vs. Canidae: Who Wins? [2024]

Written by: Arlene Divina
Arlene Divina, one of the content writers at IHD, loves going on adventures with her adorable fur baby. She now creates informative content for pet parents. Read more
| Published on January 3, 2024

Blue Buffalo and Canidae are two leading dog food brands vying for pet owners’ trust. In this article, we delve into a comprehensive comparison of these brands, scrutinizing their ingredient lists, assessing the quality of those ingredients, evaluating protein content, weighing up their price and value, and reviewing their recall histories to determine which might be the best choice for your canine companion.

Blue Buffalo Vs. Canidae: An In-Depth Ingredient Comparison

Blue Buffalo Pros:

  1. Whole Proteins as Main Ingredients: Blue Buffalo often lists whole proteins like chicken, lamb, or fish as their first ingredients. Whole meats are more easily digestible and can provide more nutritional value than meat by-products.
  2. LifeSource Bits: Exclusive to Blue Buffalo, these are kibble bits that contain a blend of antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals. These nutrients are cold-formed to preserve their potency.
  3. Natural Ingredients: Blue Buffalo emphasizes the use of natural ingredients and avoids artificial preservatives, colors, and flavors.
  4. Grain-Free Options: For dogs with sensitivities or allergies, Blue Buffalo offers grain-free formulas that can be beneficial for those canines.

Blue Buffalo Cons:

  1. Contains Meal: While they do offer whole meats, they also include meat meals in their ingredients. While meat meals can be high in protein, they can be less digestible than whole meats.
  2. Potential for High Carb Content: Some of their recipes might be higher in carbohydrates, which may not be ideal for every dog, especially those prone to obesity.

Canidae Pros:

  1. Diverse Protein Sources: Canidae is known for offering a range of protein sources. This is especially seen in their All Life Stages line, which can include chicken, turkey, lamb, and fish in one formula.
  2. Single Protein Options: For dogs with specific protein allergies or sensitivities, Canidae provides single protein sources, which can help pet owners pinpoint and avoid allergens.
  3. No Corn, Wheat, or Soy: Canidae doesn’t use these common allergens in its formulas, making it suitable for dogs with these specific sensitivities.
  4. Probiotics Added: Many of Canidae’s formulas include HealthPLUS solutions, a trio of probiotics, antioxidants, and omega fatty acids, which can support digestion, immune function, and skin health.

Canidae Cons:

  1. Contains Meal: Like Blue Buffalo, Canidae also uses meat meals in its recipes. These can be protein-rich but might not be as digestible as whole meat sources.
  2. Price Point: Given the quality of ingredients, Canidae can be on the pricier side, which might not be feasible for all pet owners on a budget.

Shared Attributes:

  1. Varied Recipes: Both brands provide a variety of formulas tailored for different life stages, dietary needs, and breed sizes. Whether you have a puppy, a senior dog, or a pet with specific dietary restrictions, both Blue Buffalo and Canidae have you covered.
  2. Natural Focus: Both brands focus on providing natural ingredients and avoid artificial additives. This focus ensures that pets are getting more wholesome nutrition without the potential side effects of synthetic components.
  3. Quality Control: Both companies emphasize their commitment to quality control, ensuring that their ingredients are safe and beneficial for pets.

Ingredient Overlap: Both brands, in their quest to provide high-quality dog food, have some overlapping ingredients. These include:

  1. Whole Proteins: Both brands prioritize whole protein sources like chicken, beef, lamb, or fish.
  2. Omega Fatty Acids: Both incorporate sources of Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids for skin and coat health.
  3. Vitamins and Minerals: Both brands fortify their kibble with necessary vitamins and minerals for balanced nutrition.
  4. Natural Preservatives: Instead of artificial preservatives, both use natural alternatives like mixed tocopherols.


Compare Pricing & Discounts: Blue Buffalo vs. Canidae

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Blue Buffalo 35% Off 1st Autoship See Current Pricing & Deals

Recalls & Lawsuits: Blue Buffalo Vs. Canidae

Both Blue Buffalo and Canidae have faced product recalls in the past, reflecting the challenges inherent in the pet food industry. Exploring these incidents can give consumers an understanding of each company’s response to quality control issues and their dedication to pet health.

Blue Buffalo Recalls & Lawsuits:

  1. 2007: One of the significant recalls that involved Blue Buffalo was in 2007 when the company voluntarily recalled products due to potential melamine contamination. Melamine, a chemical used in plastic production, had made its way into many pet foods via wheat gluten, a common ingredient. Consumption of melamine can lead to renal failure in pets.
  2. 2010: In 2010, Blue Buffalo faced another recall for potential excess Vitamin D in some of their dog food lines. Elevated levels of Vitamin D can lead to hypercalcemia, which, in turn, can cause serious health issues, including renal dysfunction.
  3. 2015: Blue Buffalo had a recall in 2015 due to potential mold contamination in certain batches of dog and cat foods.
  4. 2016: Blue Buffalo announced a recall for potential aluminum contamination in one of its dog food lines.
  5. 2017: In 2017, a voluntary recall was issued due to the discovery of potentially high levels of beef thyroid hormone in specific batches of wet dog food.

Canidae Recalls & Lawsuits:

  1. 2012: Canidae’s major recall event occurred in 2012. The company voluntarily recalled several batches of its dry dog food products due to potential salmonella contamination. Salmonella can cause serious ailments in both pets and humans if they come in contact with the contaminated product.

Canidae Recalls & Lawsuits:

Blue Buffalo has faced legal challenges related to its advertising claims. One of the significant cases was in 2015 when Nestlé Purina PetCare Company filed a lawsuit against Blue Buffalo, accusing them of false advertising. They claimed Blue Buffalo falsely advertised their products as being free from poultry by-products, corn, wheat, soy, and artificial preservatives. Blue Buffalo initially denied these allegations but later admitted that a “substantial” and “material” portion of their pet food sold to consumers did contain poultry by-product meal. This acknowledgment led to a settlement in which Blue Buffalo agreed to pay $32 million to resolve the class-action lawsuit brought by customers.

As for Canidae, the brand has managed to keep a lower profile regarding legal challenges related to its products. There have been no widely publicized lawsuits similar to the magnitude faced by Blue Buffalo. This is not to say that Canidae is free from criticism or scrutiny, but they haven’t been embroiled in significant legal battles over their products as of this writing.

In evaluating the recall and lawsuit history of both brands, it’s essential to note that recalls, while unfortunate, can be a sign of a company’s commitment to safety. By issuing voluntary recalls, both Blue Buffalo and Canidae have shown a willingness to address and rectify potential safety issues before they become widespread problems. However, the legal challenges, especially the one faced by Blue Buffalo, highlight the importance of truth in advertising and maintaining consumer trust.

Ultimately, while both brands have faced their share of challenges, they remain popular choices among pet owners. When choosing a pet food brand, it’s crucial to stay updated on any new recalls or company news, consult with a veterinarian, and consider the specific needs of one’s pet.


Compare Pricing & Discounts: Blue Buffalo vs. Canidae

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Blue Buffalo 35% Off 1st Autoship See Current Pricing & Deals


Our Verdict – Blue Buffalo vs. Canidae: Who Wins?

When comparing Blue Buffalo and Canidae dog foods, several factors come to the forefront: protein content, ingredient quality, and recall history. Blue Buffalo boasts a diverse range of protein sources and often emphasizes their inclusion of real meat. Canidae, on the other hand, has a reputation for high-quality ingredients and offers a variety of recipes tailored for different needs. In terms of recall history, both brands have faced recalls, but Blue Buffalo has had a few more incidents and a notable lawsuit related to advertising claims. Weighing these considerations, we lean toward Canidae for its consistent focus on quality ingredients and a slightly less complicated recall history. However, it’s essential for pet owners to choose based on their pet’s individual needs.


Blue Buffalo vs. Canidae: Frequently Asked Questions

1. What are the main differences between Blue Buffalo and Canidae dog foods?

Both brands prioritize high-quality ingredients, but they have different marketing angles and product lines. Blue Buffalo emphasizes its inclusion of real meat, while Canidae focuses on whole foods and offers grain-free options. Canidae also has a broader range of recipes tailored for specific needs.

2. Is real meat the primary ingredient in both brands?

Yes, both Blue Buffalo and Canidae pride themselves on using real meat as their primary ingredient. This ensures that dogs receive a high protein content essential for their health and growth.

3. Do either of the brands offer grain-free options?

Yes, both brands offer grain-free options catering to dogs with specific dietary needs or allergies. Canidae’s PURE line is a popular grain-free choice, while Blue Buffalo also offers grain-free varieties within its product range.

4. How do the brands fare concerning recalls?

Both brands have faced recalls in the past. Blue Buffalo has had a few more incidents compared to Canidae. It’s always a good idea for pet owners to keep an eye on recent recall information to ensure the safety of their pets.

5. Which brand is more affordable?

Prices can vary depending on the specific product line and where it’s purchased. Generally, Blue Buffalo is priced slightly lower than Canidae, but Canidae offers competitive pricing for its high-quality ingredients.

6. Are there specific formulas tailored for puppies and senior dogs?

Yes, both Blue Buffalo and Canidae have specific formulas designed for different life stages, including puppies and senior dogs. These formulas cater to the distinct nutritional needs of dogs at different ages.

7. Are there any unique ingredients used by either brand?

Blue Buffalo often highlights its ‘LifeSource Bits,’ which are a blend of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. Canidae, on the other hand, emphasizes whole foods and often includes HealthPLUS solutions, a trio of probiotics, antioxidants, and omega fatty acids, in every bite.

8. How do the two brands approach dietary allergies or sensitivities?

Both brands have products tailored for dogs with sensitivities. Canidae’s PURE line offers limited-ingredient diets for dogs with allergies, while Blue Buffalo provides the Basics line, which also focuses on limited ingredients to minimize food sensitivities.

9. Which brand offers more flavor variety?

Both brands offer a diverse range of flavors, focusing on various protein sources such as chicken, lamb, fish, and more. The choice would depend on a pet’s preference, but in terms of sheer variety, both brands provide ample options.

10. Are these foods suitable for all breeds and sizes?

Yes, both Blue Buffalo and Canidae cater to dogs of all sizes and breeds. They have specific formulas based on size, ensuring that nutritional needs are met regardless of a dog’s breed or size.

11. How do these brands prioritize sustainability and ethical sourcing?

Both brands prioritize high-quality ingredients and often emphasize their commitment to ethical sourcing. Canidae, in particular, owns its own farm and emphasizes transparency in its sourcing practices.

12. What do veterinarians typically say about these two brands?

Veterinarian opinions can vary, but many appreciate the commitment both brands show to high-quality ingredients. It’s always a good idea for pet owners to consult with their vet for personalized recommendations.

13. How do the two brands handle preservatives and artificial additives?

Both Blue Buffalo and Canidae pride themselves on not using artificial preservatives, colors, or flavors in their products. They opt for natural preservation methods, ensuring a healthier meal for pets.

14. Do they offer wet food options as well?

Yes, both brands offer wet food options, providing a range of choices for pet owners who prefer this or want to supplement dry food with wet varieties.

15. Which brand is more accessible and widely available?

Both Blue Buffalo and Canidae are widely available in pet stores across the country and online. However, Blue Buffalo might have a slight edge in terms of accessibility due to its broader market presence.

Compare Pricing & Discounts: Blue Buffalo vs. Canidae

Canidae 35% Off 1st Autoship See Current Pricing & Deals
Blue Buffalo 35% Off 1st Autoship See Current Pricing & Deals

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