Hill's Science Diet vs Hill's Ideal Balance

Hill's Science Diet vs. Hill's Ideal Balance

In this comparison article for Hill's Science Diet vs Hill's Ideal Balance, we'll highlight the key differences between these two pet food brands. To properly compare Hill's Science Diet and Hill's Ideal Balance, we'll use up-to-date nutritional and price information.

There are many factors to consider when choosing the best pet food brand for your pet. Factors such as ingredient quality, guaranteed analysis, product safety, brand history, and cost are among the most important factors to consider.

Throughout this Hill's Ideal Balance vs Hill's Science Diet comparison, we've utilized average data to make general comparisons. If you'd like to see individual product reviews, visit our Hill's Science Diet Review Page or Hill's Ideal Balance Review Page.

Guaranteed Analysis: Hill's Ideal Balance vs. Hill's Science Diet

According to AAFCO, all pet food labels must provide a guaranteed analysis of nutrient content. The analysis must provide guaranteed minimum percentages of crude protein and crude fat, and maximum percentages of crude fiber and moisture.

All percentages used in this comparison are averages reported on a dry matter basis.

Hill's Science Diet Dog Food vs. Hill's Ideal Balance Dog Food

Dry Dog Food Hill's Science Diet Hill's Ideal Balance
Crude Protein 24.5% 23.5%
Crude Fat 14.8% 17.8%
Crude Fiber 4.3% 1.6%
Wet/Canned Dog Food Hill's Science Diet Hill's Ideal Balance
Crude Protein 25.8% 26.6%
Crude Fat 17.1% 19.7%
Crude Fiber 3.3% 4.8%

Crude Protein Comparison For Dog Food

Dogs require twenty-two amino acids to sustain life. Twelve of these amino acids are synthesized naturally, the remaining ten are consumed. Protein is the nutrient which provides some or all of these ten essential amino acids.

As you can see, Hill's Ideal Balance and Hill's Science Diet guarantee a similar amount of crude protein. With regards to wet dog food, Hill's Ideal Balance and Hill's Science Diet also provide roughly the same amount of crude protein.


Crude Fat Comparison For Dog Food

Like protein, fats are an essential part of a dog's body. Fats are needed for the proper development and function of the canine body.

If you look at the average percentages of crude fat, you'll notice that Hill's Ideal Balance typically guarantees 3.04% more fat. This is a fairly small difference between Hill's Ideal Balance and Hill's Science Diet, but still worth mentioning. In addition, Hill's Ideal Balance wet dog foods also provide more fat than Hill's Science Diet wet foods.


According to our data, Hill's Science Diet guarantees 2.67% more fiber than Hill's Ideal Balance. Although this difference is relatively small, it's still a notable difference. For wet dog foods, Hill's Ideal Balance and Hill's Science Diet provide roughly the same amount of fiber.

Hill's Science Diet Cat Food vs. Hill's Ideal Balance Cat Food

Dry Cat Food Hill's Science Diet Hill's Ideal Balance
Crude Protein 35.2% 32.5%
Crude Fat 18.5% 21.9%
Crude Fiber 5.8% 0.9%
Wet/Canned Cat Food Hill's Science Diet Hill's Ideal Balance
Crude Protein 38.5% 43.6%
Crude Fat 22.0% 22.1%
Crude Fiber 4.4% 3.3%

Crude Protein Comparison For Cat Food

Cats require twenty-two amino acids to sustain life. Eleven of these amino acids are synthesized naturally, the remaining eleven are consumed. Protein is the nutrient which provides some or all of these eleven essential amino acids.

There is a small difference between the protein content of Hill's Science Diet and Hill's Ideal Balance. We can see that Hill's Science Diet guarantees about 2.78% more protein than Hill's Ideal Balance. In addition, Hill's Ideal Balance wet cat foods also provide more protein than Hill's Science Diet wet foods.


Crude Fat Comparison For Cat Food

There are many ways in which dietary fat contributes to the overall health of our feline friends. Here is a short list of benefits provided by fats (not exhaustive):

  • Help transport nutrients across cell membranes
  • Fats produce metabolites, which help control inflammation
  • Maintain healthy blood pressure
  • Slow the growth of yeast infections
  • Fats improve the taste/texture of food.

According to our average data, Hill's Science Diet typically provides less fat than Hill's Ideal Balance. However, this difference is relatively small and doesn't represent a significant difference between the two brands. For wet cat foods, Hill's Ideal Balance and Hill's Science Diet provide roughly the same amount of fat.


The table shows that Hill's Ideal Balance provides far less fiber than Hill's Science Diet. The difference in fiber content is roughly 4.88%. For wet cat foods, Hill's Science Diet and Hill's Ideal Balance provide roughly the same amount of fiber.

Hill's Science Diet Pet Food Ingredients vs. Hill's Ideal Balance Pet Food Ingredients

Hill's Science Diet and Hill's Ideal Balance both use the following controversial ingredients in many of their products:

Caramel
Pea Protein
Pork Plasma
Brewers Rice
Caramel Color
Tomato Pomace
Powdered Cellulose
Dried Tomato Pomace
Pea Protein Concentrate

Here are some of the controversial ingredients used only by Hill's Science Diet.

Liver
Corn Flour
Iron Oxide
Poultry Fat
Animal Liver
Wheat Gluten
Beef By-Products
Corn Gluten Meal
Pork By-Products
Whole Grain Corn
Whole Grain Wheat
Soybean Protein Isolate

Here are some of the controversial ingredients used only by Hill's Ideal Balance.

Canola Oil

We believe that certain pet food ingredients are linked to adverse health affects; these ingredients are classified as harmful.

Hill's Science Diet and Hill's Ideal Balance both use the following harmful ingredients in many of their products:

Menadione Sodium Bisulfite Complex

Product Safety: Recall History of Hill's Science Diet & Hill's Ideal Balance?

Hill's Science Diet has been recalled once.

  • Jan. 31, 2019: elevated levels of Vitamin D

According to our records, Hill's Ideal Balance has never been recalled.

Price Comparison: Which Brand Is More Expensive?

Dry Dog Food Hill's Science Diet Hill's Ideal Balance
Per Pound $1.99 $2.04
Per Calorie $0.0012 $0.0012
Dry Cat Food Hill's Science Diet Hill's Ideal Balance
Per Pound $2.90 $2.79
Per Calorie $0.0017 $0.0015
Wet Dog Food Hill's Science Diet Hill's Ideal Balance
Per Pound $3.24 $3.32
Per Calorie $0.0078 $0.0098
Wet Cat Food Hill's Science Diet Hill's Ideal Balance
Per Pound $4.73 $7.17
Per Calorie $0.0100 $0.0161

The average cost-per-lb is heavily influenced by the varying amounts of moisture present in each brand's food products (wet vs. dry food, dry vs. freeze-dried food, etc). However, the average cost-per-kcal eliminates the influence of moisture. Therefore, the average cost-per-kcal is the better metric to consider.

If you'd like to calculate the average cost-per-day or cost-pet-year of feeding Hill's Science Diet or Hill's Ideal Balance, input your pet's weight into our cost analyzer widget.

Averages price data can identify whether or not there exists a significant price difference between two brands. However, the actual price that you'll pay for Hill's Science Diet or Hill's Ideal Balance will depend on your shopping habits.

Pet owners who use our price comparison feature typically save more than 25% off retail prices for Hill's Science Diet and Hill's Ideal Balance. In addition, we currently have some great coupons for our readers.


Disclosure: PawDiet has an affiliate relationship with stores featured (or linked-to) in this article. We are compensated for referring customers. Thank you for shopping with our retail partners!

Where To Buy Hill's Science Diet Pet Foods

You can purchase Hill's Science Diet pet foods from the following stores:








Where To Buy Hill's Ideal Balance Pet Foods

You can purchase Hill's Ideal Balance pet food products from these retailers:









Type Of Pet Foods Available

Product Hill's Science Diet Hill's Ideal Balance
Dry Dog Food 32 Recipes 6 Recipes
Wet Dog Food 30 Recipes 2 Recipes
Dog Treats 15 Treats 3 Treats
Dry Cat Food 18 Recipes 4 Recipes
Wet Cat Food 39 Recipes 2 Recipes
Cat Treats

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