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The 7 Best Novel Protein Dog Foods

You have likely heard of or fed your dog novel protein dog food. The phrase "new protein" refers to a form of meat (a source of protein) that is distinct from the meat typically used in dog food, such as beef, chicken, and turkey. Since allergy responses and dietary sensitivities in dogs can be triggered by these four protein sources, a fresh source is required to circumvent them.

Meats such as lamb, duck, rabbit, venison, bison, salmon, and kangaroo are examples of novel proteins. If your dog has a food allergy or sensitivity, feeding them dog food with a novel protein can typically eliminate the issue. BestForPets (bestforpets.org) provides reviews of the best novel protein dog foods, including our top recommendation overall.


Diamond Naturals Lamb Meal & Rice Formula

Diamond Naturals Lamb Meal & Rice is the greatest innovative protein dog food for the money in our opinion. The price is reasonable, and more importantly, the recipe’s list of ingredients is outstanding. Blueberries and pumpkin, two superfoods strong in fiber and antioxidants, are included.

The first component, lamb meal, coupled with quinoa and chia seed, provide your dog with a plenty of protein for energy, good bones, and strong muscles. K9 Strain, the company’s unique probiotic technology, has 80 million colony-forming units (CFUs) of live, active probiotic cultures per pound of food.

Diamond Naturals is a known and reliable brand with some of the most severe food safety processes in the market. They manufacture their products in the United States using ingredients purchased from the world’s leading vendors.

They exclusively offer their dog food through a restricted number of distributors, making it quite difficult to locate. It’s worth the effort to track it out, especially if you’re on a tight budget but yet want to provide the best for your dog.


  • Excellent ingredients
  • Abundant protein
  • Proprietary probiotics
  • Reasonable pricing


  • Contains poultry fat

Ziwi Peak Venison Grain-Free Air-Dried Dog Food

The formula for the Venison Grain-Free, Air-Dried dog food from Ziwi Peak is quite amazing. It is believed that air-drying is superior to cooking when it comes to preserving delicate goods.

This exceptional recipe contains 10% superfoods, such as organic kelp, New Zealand green mussels, and cold-washed green tripe, with no added carbohydrates or fillers.

The venison in Ziwi Peak’s recipe is hormone-free and grown without extra growth hormones, which we appreciate. This recipe has no grains, sugars, or glycerin and contains solely deer protein, which is uncommon among new protein dog diets, in addition to green mussels.

As grains have been proved to be beneficial to a dog’s health, we recommend consulting with your veterinarian before feeding your dog a grain-free diet.


  • Venison as a source of protein
  • Includes New Zealand green mussels
  • Whole deer meat is the primary component.
  • Extremely rich in protein
  • Contains chondroitin and glucosamine to support healthy joints
  • 96% flesh, organs, and NZ green mussels


  • Expensive

Purina Pro Plan Development Sensitive Skin & Stomach Salmon & Rice

Puppies have quite different dietary requirements than adults, which is why we recommend Purina Pro Plan Development Sensitive Skin & Stomach Salmon & Rice.

One reason is that it is rich in calcium, which is essential for the development of your puppy’s bones, teeth, and muscles. Sunflower oil, which is rich in omega-6 fatty acids, is also included in Purina Pro Plan to preserve and nourish your puppy’s coat and skin.

Salmon is one of the greatest new proteins, with a very minimal risk of allergic responses. To aid in the development of your puppy’s immune system, Purina Pro Plan contains live probiotics, which are also vital for a healthy gastrointestinal tract.

Regarding immunity, this formula is rich in antioxidants and DHA, and it contains rice since it is easily digestible. This formula is intended for large-breed puppies, although Purina also produces a formula for smaller breeds.


  • Ideal for developing pups
  • Genuine salmon is the primary component.
  • DHA, fiber, antioxidants, and fatty acids are all present in abundance.
  • Excellent protein content
  • Made in America


  • Designed for big breed dogs
  • Expensive

Taste of the Wild Ancient Stream Smoke-Flavored Salmon with Ancient Grains

Taste of the Wild Ancient Stream smoked salmon with ancient grains is an excellent diet for all life stages of dogs. Salmon and salmon meal are the first two components, both of which are rich in omega fatty acids and a good source of clean protein.

The ancient grains included in this dish, including sorghum, chia seeds, millet, and quinoa, provide an additional source of protein.

The addition of a probiotic blend that is crucial for your dog or puppy’s digestive health and immunity is one of the reasons we adore this innovative protein dog food. The addition of blueberries and raspberries guarantees that your dog will receive an adequate amount of antioxidants, which are vital for general health.

We also appreciate that their fish is sourced sustainably, however we are not entirely satisfied with their farm-raised salmon. Lastly, owing to the salmon, this Taste of the Wild recipe is loaded with omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, which will help your dog maintain a healthy hair and skin.


  • Salmon is 1st ingredient
  • High in protein content
  • Low in lipid
  • Ancient grains are rich in fiber.


  • Expensive

Nature’s Logic Canine Duck & Salmon Meal Feast

The Canine Duck & Salmon Meal Feast is an excellent illustration of why Nature’s Logic is one of the best dog food products on the market today. Three of the first five components in new meats that provide significant quantities of protein and minerals are duck, turkey, and salmon.

The fact that Nature’s Logic does not utilize synthetic vitamins in its formulations was the first thing we noticed about the company, and we believe this is fantastic. The mix also includes probiotics and enzymes, which substantially aid in digestion and boost the immune system of your dog.

Additionally, we appreciate that this recipe is suitable for feeding to puppies, adult dogs, and elderly dogs. We are concerned that the 38% protein content of Nature’s Logic may be too high for dogs with renal difficulties, so please consult your veterinarian before feeding this product.

With 15% fat and 5% fiber, your dog will be adequately nourished without gaining weight. We also enjoy that Nature’s Logic purchases 1 kW of renewable energy for every pound of dog food sold, even though this has no effect on the food itself.


  • Very high levels of protein
  • Made for all dog life stages
  • Three new protein types (Duck, salmon, turkey)
  • 100% all-natural


  • Expensive

Taste of the Wild – Roasted Bison & Venison

One of the best characteristics of Taste of the Wild is its high 32% protein content, the majority of which comes from high-quality genuine meat. The first two components are water buffalo and lamb, two proteins that are relatively low on the allergen scale and cause minimal, if any, food allergies in the majority of dogs.

There is also roasted deer meat and ocean fish meal, two additional good sources of protein. Taste of the Wild, like many of its rivals, contains a unique combination of probiotics and dried chicory root for enhanced digestion and immunity. Even better, the probiotics are added after cooking to preserve their vitality (the heat from cooking can destroy them).

Also included in the dish are blueberries, sweet potatoes, and raspberries, which provide your dog with a daily dose of antioxidants. The intake of peas and potatoes is problematic given their potential association with cardiovascular disease. Taste of the Wild – Roasted Bison & Venison is a high-quality alternative meat dog food.


  • Buffalo is the primary component.
  • Several further exotic meats are included.
  • 32% protein from premium beef
  • Genuine vegetables and fruits for antioxidants


  • Considerably pricey
  • 18% fat
  • Included in the recipe are peas.

Blue Buffalo Wilderness Rocky Mountain Recipe with Bison

Blue Buffalo is a popular and well-known brand of dog food, and its Rocky Mountain Recipe with Bison is our top pick. Blue Buffalo’s “True Blue Promise,” which declares that the first ingredient is always real beef, is something we adore.

There are never any fake ingredients or soy or wheat. Blue Buffalo is the finest food for adult dogs that are active, since it has all the necessary nutrients to maintain strong bones, good teeth, and robust muscles.

Blue Buffalo, like the majority of dog meals on our current list, is prepared in the United States with ingredients sourced from throughout the world. The primary new protein is bison, which is ideal for dogs with dietary sensitivities or allergies and contains 30% protein per bowl.

With an abundance of vegetables and fruits for complex carbohydrates, fiber, and antioxidants, it is easy to understand why this is our top pick. The relationship between peas (the fourth component) and heart disease is still being explored, which is a cause for caution.


  • Bison is the primary component.
  • No wheat, corn, or soy
  • Beneficial complex carbohydrate
  • Protein-rich, high in fiber and antioxidants


  • Contains many types of peas.

Buying Guide

Finding the greatest innovative protein dog food should not be challenging, but it often is. Many businesses that emphasize new proteins also make their dog food recipes “grain-free”, which is problematic for a number of reasons.

One is that some grains, such as rice, oats, barley, wheat, rye, and sorghum, are safe and very nutritious for dogs when consumed in the proper proportion.

You may purchase a high-quality novel protein meal, but if it is grain-free, your dog may be missing out on vital nutrients. Some grain-free diets are being investigated for their potential association with the development of dilated cardiomyopathy.

This appears to be associated with low taurine precursors or taurine levels, as well as a higher-than-normal consumption of legumes. Look for unique dog food that contains grains unless your dog has a special sensitivity to one or more of these ingredients. The majority of the brands on our list contain ancient grains.

In the end, we selected dog diets with a real unique protein as the first component, followed by six to seven more novel proteins and high-quality additives.

All of the dog diets on the current list are rich in antioxidants, and the majority use ancient, nutrient-dense grains without peas, pea powder, or legumes. All are rich in high-quality protein and have a low risk of triggering an allergic reaction in your dog.


Today, allergies and dietary sensitivities are prevalent in canines. The Diamond Naturals, Lamb Meal & Rice is the greatest option for pet owners on a budget. The new protein dog food of our choice, Ziwi Peaks’ Venison Grain-Free, Air-Dried Dog Food, is of the highest quality.

Our pick for the best food for pups is Purina Pro Plan Sensitive Skin & Stomach. All of the best novel protein dog foods listed in this article by BestForPets (bestforpets.org) are recommended.

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Dr. Deborah Fletcher

Deborah R. Fletcher, DVM, is a skilled veterinarian with more than 15 years of experience dealing with companion and exotic animals. She has experience caring for a variety of animals, including household cats and dogs, reptiles, birds of prey, and even primates. Dr. Fletcher is a valuable part of the BestForPets team, where she contributes to their aim of providing pets and their owners with the finest possible treatment and services.

Veterinarian (DVM) Dr. Deborah Fletcher


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