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Primal vs Stella & Chewy Dog Food: Our 2024 Comparison

Written by: Ashley Bates

Last Updated on May 24, 2024 by Dogster Team

Primal vs Stella & Chewy Dog Food - Featured Image

Primal vs Stella & Chewy Dog Food: Our 2024 Comparison

VET APPROVED

Dr. Paola Cuevas Photo

REVIEWED & FACT-CHECKED BY

Dr. Paola Cuevas

Veterinarian, MVZ

The information is current and up-to-date in accordance with the latest veterinarian research.

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When you’re shopping through the ever-growing sea of commercial dog food selections, you might come across these two companies: Primal and Stella & Chewy’s. If both brands strike your attention due to their similarities and dog-conscious recipes and you want to know more about them, we break down all the details here.

As two worthy adversaries, these companies have much to offer pets on their own. But only you can decide which brand works best for your dog.

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Sneak Peek at the Winner: Primal

Rating Image Product Details
Best Overall
Winner
Primal Pet Foods Freeze-Dried Chicken Nuggets Primal Pet Foods Freeze-Dried Chicken Nuggets
  • Very appetite-inducing
  • Highly digestible
  • Rich protein
  • Runner-up
    Second place
    Stella & Chewy’s Wild Red Raw Stella & Chewy’s Wild Red Raw
  • Rich in protein
  • Savory recipe
  • Able to rehydrate
  • We love both brands and would recommend them to anyone. However, Primal slides slightly into the lead. That doesn’t mean Stella & Chewy’s is a bad choice—it makes excellent recipes that work well for any dog. But Primal comes out ahead in our opinion. Read on to find out why!

    About Primal

    Matt Koss is the founder of Primal. He has worked diligently to create species-friendly recipes for dogs, a dietary idea that came from a place of passion. His dog Luna was diagnosed with early-stage renal failure in 2002. Her veterinarian recommended a dietary style called BARF. This led Matt to develop Primal, sharing what he learned with other owners. He worked with a knowledgeable team of professionals to offer dogs a comprehensive diet that could potentially increase their lifespan and strengthen their health.1

    Primal Chicken Formula Nuggets Grain-Free Raw Freeze-Dried Dog Food in a bowl

    Company Mission

    Primal pet food aims to give dogs a more natural eating experience to enhance their health. The idea is to create a canine-friendly diet that caters to specific aspects of internal and external care, strengthening the dog’s health and hopefully lengthening their lifespan.

    About Stella & Chewy’s

    Stella and Chewy’s got its name from two rescue dogs adopted by Marie Moody in 1997. She first adopted a dog named Stella. Then, she took in a sickly dog named Chewy. Marie was determined to help his health issues by feeding him a raw food diet, and it healed him completely. Wowed by the transformation, Marie set out to help other pet parents by creating dog food that would give them 100% appropriate nutrition.2

    Company Mission

    At Stella and Chewy’s, the workers believe that dog and cat nutrition is of utmost importance. They believe in high-quality recipes that cater to the animal’s instincts, thus creating a better experience. Knowing the power of raw food healing, they have developed a variety of meals and keep expanding.

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    3 Most Popular Primal Dog Food Recipes

    *All Primal recipes are made with USDA-certified organic ingredients.  

    1. Primal Pet Foods Freeze-Dried Chicken Nuggets

    Primal Chicken Formula Nuggets Grain-Free Raw Freeze-Dried Dog Food

    Flavor: Chicken
    Main Ingredients: Chicken, chicken liver
    Protein: 47%
    Fat: 25%
    Fiber: 3%
    Moisture: 6%

    Primal Pet Food Freeze-Dried Chicken Nuggets offer an excellent protein and nutrient-rich material source. The nuggets are versatile: You can use them as a topper, standalone meal, or treat.

    These freeze-dried raw nuggets are packed with protein, topping out at 47%. Primal combines a series of bones, meat, and organs for optimal health. The protein source is antibiotic-, hormone-, and steroid-free chicken.

    In addition to such a high amount of protein, there are plenty of delicious, highly digestible fruits, vegetables, and gentle grains, such as quinoa.

    Primal has changed the recipe if you were familiar with the previous bags of chicken nuggets. So, make sure you do a quick sweep of the ingredients to make sure everything is still agreeable for your pup.

    Pros
    • Appetite-inducing
    • Highly digestible
    • Rich protein
    Cons
    • Changed recipe

    2. Primal Pet Foods Freeze-Dried Raw Toppers

    Primal Cupboard Cuts Freeze Dried Raw Dog Food Topper Turkey

    Flavor: Chicken
    Main Ingredients: Chicken, chicken liver, sweet potato
    Protein: 35%
    Fat: 15%
    Fiber: 5%
    Moisture: 7%

    Primal Pet Foods Freeze-Dried Raw Toppers make the perfect addition to any existing food item. These freeze-dried pieces can be rehydrated or left as is, depending on your dog’s preference.

    This topper item is packed with live probiotics to support good gut health. It contains minimal ingredients, and the ones included are all healthy for normal adult dogs. However, you will still want to check the ingredients to ensure that every element is safe for your particular dog.

    This recipe contains 35% protein, making it an excellent booster to your dog’s daily diet. It’s also loaded with natural antioxidants and phytonutrients. These pieces make great training, reward, and supplemental snacks.

    These snacks are for all life stages, so any pup can enjoy them.

    Pros
    • Great topper for all life stages
    • Can rehydrate for added flavor
    • Live probiotics and phytonutrients
    Cons
    • Pricey

    3. Primal Liver, Laugh, Love Simply Pork Flavored Crunchy Dog Treats

    Primal Liver, Laugh, Love Simply Pork Flavored Crunchy Dog Treats

    Flavor: Pork liver
    Main Ingredients: Pork liver
    Protein: 60%
    Fat: 21%
    Fiber: 1%
    Moisture: 10% max

    There are no hidden ingredients or byproducts listed in this product. It is 100% dehydrated pork liver and nothing else. Primal Liver, Laugh, Love Simply Pork Flavored Crunchy Dog Treats offer a great source of protein, making it a nutrient-friendly boost for any canine friend.

    You’re sure not to encounter any harmful pitfalls in this dog treat. It provides protein-rich nutrients that your dog craves, creating a savory snack. They also serve as great motivational treats and can be given whole or in part.

    These treats have been freeze-dried and slow-roasted for safety and flavor. Since they have a single protein source, they can also work well for dogs with food allergies. However, this isn’t the best selection for dogs with dental sensitivity. It will just be too hard for them to chew.

    Pros
    • Whole protein
    • Crispy and flavorful
    • Both freeze-dried and slow-roasted
    Cons
    • Not for sensitive teeth

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    3 Most Popular Stella & Chewy’s Dog Food Recipes

    1. Stella & Chewy’s Wild Red Raw

    Stella & Chewy's Wild Red Raw Coated Kibble Grain-Free Red Meat Recipe Dry Dog Food

    Flavor: Red meat
    Main Ingredients: Beef, pork, lamb, venison, goat
    Protein: 35%
    Fat: 17%
    Fiber: 5%
    Moisture: 12%

    If you’re looking for a delicious medley of multiple meat sources, Stella & Chewy’s Wild Red Raw is a stellar pick. It has a variety of flavors, textures, and nutrients to nourish your pup from the taste buds to the digestive tract.

    Each protein source offers its own perks to the whole setup. You can add water and watch the food take form, rehydrating and offering a delicious feast. This might be one of the most savory recipes on offer when it comes to raw food sources.

    You can also add it as a dry topper on top of regular food or as a standalone option. It’s really up to you and what works best for your dog.

    However, you’ll have to be careful with dogs prone to gaining weight, as this recipe is high in fat.

    Pros
    • Rich in protein
    • Savory recipe
    • Able to rehydrate
    Cons
    • Pricey

    2. Stella & Chewy’s Meal Mixers

    Stella & Chewy's Tantalizing Turkey Meal Mixers Freeze-Dried Raw Dog Food Topper

    Flavor: Turkey
    Main Ingredients: Turkey with ground bone, turkey liver, turkey gizzard
    Protein: 40%
    Fat: 36%
    Fiber: 5%
    Moisture: 5%

    If you want to spruce up the same old daily meal, Stella & Chewy’s Meal Mixers works wonders. It’s perfect enough for a standalone snack if you want to use it for rewards or training.

    We want to point out that this particular product has quite a high fat content. It’s best for dogs that don’t have any dietary restrictions and that aren’t already overweight.

    These toppers are designed to soothe allergies rather than trigger them, so even sensitive pups can enjoy them. They are an excellent appetite enhancer, and we think most dogs can benefit from these freeze-dried pieces. However, some dogs are sensitive to specific proteins, so read the label to be sure.

    Once again, you have to be careful how you ration these tasty snacks. They are super high in fat and can quickly pack on the pounds if your pup has too many.

    Pros
    • Excellent size for training
    • Allergy-friendly
    • Great for digestion
    Cons
    • High in fat

    3. Marie’s Magical Dinner Dust

    Stella & Chewy's Marie's Magical Dinner Freeze-Dried Raw Dust Grass-Fed Beef Dog Food Topper

    Flavor: Grass-fed beef
    Main Ingredients: Beef, beef liver, beef kidney
    Protein: 44%
    Fat: 35%
    Fiber: 5%
    Moisture: 5%

    If you want a flavor, not a texture, that’s still packed with all the goodies, your pup might like Stella & Chewy’s Marie’s Magical Dinner Dust. This flavor booster is like adding a salty packet to your boring noodles—it gives it the zing that your dog craves.

    Not only is this little packet full of flavors, but the possibilities are also endless. It has a high kick of protein, landing at 44.0%, but it’s also 35.0% fat, so watch frequency. You can sprinkle it on top of your dog’s meal or hydrate it to make it a yummy broth—it’s delicious either way.

    This is a raw booster intended to be mixed with a regular dog food diet. So, if your dog isn’t quite ready to make a full food switch, it’s an excellent enhancement to any dish.

    Pros
    • Enhances the flavor of food
    • Works as powder or broth
    Cons
    • High-fat content

    Recall History of Primal and Stella & Chewy’s

    Primal has had three recalls in total. In May 2011, some cat food was recalled due to Salmonella contamination. In March 2015, feline food was recalled for low thiamine levels. Primal had one major recall in 2017 for issues with bone grind size.

    Stella and Chewy’s has also had a few recalls, starting in 2015. The first case was for Listeria contamination for lot #165-15. The second recall was in 2016. The company voluntarily recalled several dog and cat food cases again because of potential Listeria contamination.

    shar pei dog eating
    Image By: Pixel-Shot, Shutterstock

    Primal and Stella & Chewy’s Comparison

    Let’s tally up the score.

    Overall Quality — Primal

    Both Primal and Stella and Chewy’s have incredible recipes that offer a wild-like eating experience for dogs’ domesticated bodies.

    While they are both highly revered companies with comprehensive recipes, Stella and Chewy’s tends to have higher fat content, which might not be compatible with all breeds.

    Company Backstory — Primal

    Most pet food companies’ beginning stories involve a person or group of people becoming passionate about pet nutrition. This usually comes from a personal experience with a pet that required a more holistic, natural approach to food due to health issues.

    Both Primal and Stella and Chewy’s were inspired by pets whose owners really cared about their longevity and overall quality of life. However, Primal’s backstory particularly tugs at the heartstrings.

    Recipe Content — Primal

    Stella and Chewy’s has a more extensive protein variety in its recipes. However, Primal’s aim is to create singular or minimal protein sources to cater to dogs that have allergies to specific meat sources.

    So here, it just depends on the current state of health of your dog. If you’re looking for more of a flavor-enhancement experience, Stella and Chewy’s might be the one to pick. However, if you’re looking for sustenance to nourish your sensitive dog, Primal is a perfect choice.

    dog eating in a food bowl
    Image by: cottonbro, Pexels

    Recipe Lines — Primal

    Both Stella and Chewy’s and Primal take the raw aspect to another level. Offering excellent protein and top-notch quality recipes, these brands work to provide a variety of food and change up the pace.

    Ultimately, though, we think that Primal has slightly more substance than Stella and Chewy’s.

    Price — Stella & Chewy’s

    When it comes to price, Stella and Chewy’s wins that battle. Since the two companies use similar ingredients and recipe styles, they should be equally affordable. However, Stella and Chewy’s is well under the average Primal dish. So, it works best for tighter budgets.

    Availability — Stella & Chewy’s

    Both Stella and Chewy’s and Primal are available in pet shops and online. However, Stella and Chewy’s seems to have a more comprehensive range of availability than Primal.

    Best Overall —  Primal

    These are two fabulous raw food options for pet parents to consider. Both brands deserve credit and praise for creating substantially healthy meals for our canines. Each product line proves the careful way that each brand was crafted.

    However, Primal gets the big win because it outdoes Stella & Chewy’s by a slight margin.

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    Conclusion

    We thoroughly enjoy these two dog food brands. Both are comprehensive lines of raw and well-researched dog food meals, treats, and other goodies. No matter which brand you go with, you will love the results—and so will your pup.

    But we prefer Primal to Stella & Chewy’s because we think that it suits a wider range of dog needs.

     

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