Meet Pioneer Naturals Dog Food
Pioneer Naturals calls themselves the All-American dog food because they raise all of their meat in the US and do all of their processing here as well. The goal of the company is to remain the most affordable dog food by price per pound and judging by their prices; they are somewhere in the middle.
The food contains no additives and always uses meat as the first ingredient. They don’t use any fillers, soy, corn, or gluten in their formula.
The company has a solid reputation online for providing healthy dog food at an affordable price, but it’s difficult to find a lot of information or products available from the company.
We think this is because the company, Pioneer Naturals is currently getting bought out by Barkstrong. The merger is probably limiting their ability to produce products so right now we only found one type of dog food available for purchase online. You might be able to find Pioneer Naturals at local retailers.
Brand Quick Look
- Parent Company: Barkstrong
- Founded in: 2012
- Made in: California USA
- Available at: Limited availability on Chewy.com
- Types of Food: Dry
- Real Meat in First 5 Ingredients? : Yes
- Recalled in Past? : No
Behind the Brand
Until May of 2018, the company Wild Calling owned Pioneer Naturals and oversaw all of the production. In May the company was bought out by Barkstrong after going bankrupt. We’re not sure how this will affect the availability or marketing of the dog food, but it seems that the merging of the companies is limiting production of the food.
Throughout 2018 Barkstrong was well known for buying up a lot of failing pet food companies, and with a quick google search, you’ll discover that the company bought more than five pet food brands last year. We’re sure that in the coming months we’ll see more Pioneer Naturals food available on the shelf.
What Types of Dog Food Does Pioneer Naturals Offer?
Pioneer Naturals has an interesting take on the foods they produce. They bake their kibble at the lowest possible temperature that is safe enough to remove the bacteria, and by doing this, they maintain the highest level of nutrients in the food.
They offer three different types of dry kibble with only one currently available for purchase online. We checked all the dog food websites, chewy, Amazon, PetSmart, and Petco, and were only able to find the Buffalo dry dog food available on Chewy.com.
All of Pioneer Naturals dog food is made using free-range protein and active probiotics to regulate gut health. They do not use any GMOs or hormones, and the formulas only contain one primary source of protein to help with digestion and food allergies.
None of their food contains added flavors, soy, fillers, or colors and they try to maintain low levels of sugar and salt in every one of their lines.
Here are the food offerings from Pioneer Naturals:
- Chicken Meal (not available)
- Whitefish Meal (not available)
When you are on the Pioneer Naturals website, and you hover over these three options you can click to get more information. If you do that on the buffalo option, it will take you to Chewy.com where you can make your purchase.
If you click on the chicken meal or whitefish meal option, it takes you to an error page, so we are sure that these options are not currently available.
Maybe in the coming months (or when you’re reading this), they will be available for purchase again.
Pioneer Naturals Recall History
During our research, we did not find any recalls of the Pioneer Naturals brand.
Best Pioneer Naturals Dog Food
While they may not have a lot of options available for purchase; they still have one brand that you can buy on Chewy.com, and it has excellent ratings. We want to take the time to break it down and help you learn everything you can. Reading reviews and knowing as much information as possible about a dog food enables you to make an informed decision.
In this section, we’re taking a look at the Pioneer Naturals Buffalo dry dog food to help you decide if this is a good option for your canine companion.
- Overall: 4 out of 5
- Ingredients: 3.5 out of 5
- Flavor: 4 out of 5
- Packaging: 4 out of 5
- Price: 4.5 out of 5
This food is made using free-range buffalo, rice, and other freeze-dried ingredients to provide your dog with all the nutrition they need. They use probiotics and enzymes to help regulate gut health as well.
In this formula, you’ll find chelated minerals to help with absorption of essential vitamins. All their food is made free from potatoes, GMOs, and growth hormones.
Something we like is that they use buffalo as the single source of protein and you don’t make your way down the ingredient list and find other things like chicken or fish meal. We appreciate when companies are direct about their marketing, and they promote dog food for what it is.
First five ingredients:
Buffalo meal, sorghum, peas, pearled barley, brown rice
There is a lot of grain in the first five ingredients here so some critics would argue that this is not protein-based dog food. The nutritional breakdown of this food goes something like this:
- Protein 25%
- Fat 29%
- Carbs 46%
With that analysis of the nutritional value, we would also be able to make the statement that this is plant-based dry dog food and not a protein-based one like they lead you to believe.
That said, it does not mean that the food is bad because it averages 4.5 stars out of 5 on Chewy with a 90% recommendation rating. Many reviewers state that the product has impacted their pups life and they notice a significant reduction is allergies after switching to this food.
Overall, if you are unhappy with your current dog food and you’re looking to try something different you may want to give Pioneer Naturals a try. They have a solid reputation and high-quality ingredients in their food.
In this section, we’re looking at both positive and negative reviews of Pioneer Naturals. Many customers say that the food works well for dogs with allergies and their pups love the crunchy kibble size.
Some critical reviews express concern over changes to the formula and the fact that their dogs simply do not like it. Overall, Pioneer Naturals dog food has over four stars on all their foods, so we realize that most people have good things to say about this food brand.
Dogs love this food!
This food looked and smelled very fresh; my larger dogs loved it. My rat terrier had a harder time as she doesn’t like larger kibble or if it is crunchy. This kibble is middle of the road sized, but a harder crunchier texture. The labs loved it, and it slowed my big guy down…he liked chewing it up like biscuits. – Chewy Customer
Must For Food Allergies
My boxer Buster Brown has had unrelenting food allergies for the last year and a half. Not only has his hair grown back, but his energy is better than ever! I cannot thank you all enough for your fall promotion. It was the best decision I’ve made all year! – Chewy Customer
0 out of 3 dogs like it
Two dogs 100 lbs+ and one dog under 30 lbs who are not at all picky eaters they’ll eat just about anything and never had a problem switching food or at least flavors. Had the chicken version that went fine. Got this kind the bowls sat full untouched — not one of my three dogs like this food. Disappointing considering the bag is a waste now. – Chewy Customer
I fed this and LOVED the results I got from it and was impressed by the ingredients it provided. Then, it went off the market for quite some time. Sadly, this product is nothing like the past product by just reading the ingredients. Now they’ve added the ingredients I’m trying to stay away from as it does not set well nor is good for dogs. I hate it when companies have a good thing going then change it all up. When will companies ever learn not to change a good thing? – Chewy Customer
Uncertainty for Pioneer Naturals
At the end of the day, Pioneer Naturals is a reliable dog food brand containing high-quality ingredients at an affordable price. We’re not sure how the merging of Barkstrong with Pioneer will affect the product so you may continue to see changes in the formula over the coming years.
Their food contains real protein from reliable sources, and all their meats come directly from the US, so you know what you’re getting in every bag. We also love the fact that the company uses one primary source of protein in all their foods. This helps limit allergic reactions and other food sensitivities in dogs.
Currently, as we stand, we recommend Pioneer Naturals to dog owners who are unhappy with their current dog food and who want to try something different.