vs
Iams vs Instinct

Iams vs. Instinct

In this comparison article for Iams vs Instinct, we'll highlight the key differences between these two pet food brands. To properly compare Iams and Instinct, 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 Instinct vs Iams comparison, we've utilized average data to make general comparisons. If you'd like to see individual product reviews, visit our Iams Review Page or Instinct Review Page.

Guaranteed Analysis: Instinct vs. Iams

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.

Iams Dog Food vs. Instinct Dog Food

Dry Dog Food Iams Instinct
Crude Protein 27.6% 35.6%
Crude Fat 14.9% 20.3%
Crude Fiber 5.1% 4.6%
Wet/Canned Dog Food Iams Instinct
Crude Protein 42.0% 45.0%
Crude Fat 24.0% 25.0%
Crude Fiber 5.8% 7.9%

Crude Protein Comparison For Dog Food

Protein is an extremely important part of your dog's diet. Without sufficient protein, dogs can develop a wide-range of serious health problems.

Iams dry recipes contain 7.93% less protein than Instinct dry recipes. This difference in protein content is a notable difference between Instinct and Iams. For wet dog foods, Instinct typically provides a little more protein (about 3.06% more).


Crude Fat Comparison For Dog Food

Dietary fats serves a multitude of roles in the proper development and function of our canine companions. Here are some of the benefits (not exhaustive):

  • Help produce prostaglandins, which reduce inflammation among other critical functions.
  • Aid in the absorption of fat-soluble vitamins
  • Improve skin and coat health
  • Improve the palatially of your dog's food

The table shows that Iams provides far less fat than Instinct. The difference in fat content is roughly 5.41%. For wet dog foods, Instinct and Iams provide roughly the same amount of fat.


Both brands provide roughly the same amount of crude fiber. For wet dog foods, Instinct typically provides a little more fiber (about 2.07% more).

Iams Cat Food vs. Instinct Cat Food

Dry Cat Food Iams Instinct
Crude Protein 36.0% 44.5%
Crude Fat 16.8% 20.6%
Crude Fiber 4.3% 4.2%
Wet/Canned Cat Food Iams Instinct
Crude Protein 50.5% 48.3%
Crude Fat 19.0% 24.7%
Crude Fiber 14.7% 8.8%

Crude Protein Comparison For Cat Food

Protein is an extremely important part of your cat's diet. Without sufficient protein, cats can develop a wide-range of serious health problems.

Instinct dry cat foods clearly provides more protein than Iams. In fact, the difference between the protein content is roughly 8.45%, which is a significant amount. For wet cat foods, Iams typically provides a little more protein (about 2.25% more).


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):

  • Aid in the digestion and absorption of fat-soluble vitamins
  • Improve the health of skin/coat
  • Slow the growth of yeast infections
  • Slow the development and spread of certain type of cancers.
  • Maintain healthy blood pressure

According to our average data, Iams typically provides less fat than Instinct. However, this difference is relatively small and doesn't represent a significant difference between the two brands. In addition, Instinct wet cat foods also provide more fat than Iams wet foods.


As you can see, Instinct and Iams guarantee a similar amount of crude fiber. For wet cat foods, Iams provides more fiber (about 5.91% more).

Iams Pet Food Ingredients vs. Instinct Pet Food Ingredients

Iams and Instinct both use the following controversial ingredients in many of their products:

Canola Oil
Pea Protein
Tomato Pomace

Here are some of the controversial ingredients used only by Iams.

Liver
Caramel
Beet Pulp
Corn Meal
Corn Grits
Iron Oxide
Canola Meal
Fish Digest
Ground Corn
Brewers Rice
Wheat Gluten
Caramel Color
Vegetable Oil
Feeding Oatmeal
Poultry Giblets
Beef By-Products
Corn Gluten Meal
Meat By-Products
Ground Yellow Corn
Powdered Cellulose
Chicken By-Products
Dried Meat By-Products
Chicken By-Product Meal
Ground Whole Grain Corn
Poultry By-Product Meal
Soybean Protein Isolate
Animal Fat (Preserved With Mixed Tocopherols)
Poultry Fat (Preserved With Mixed Tocopherols)

Here are some of the controversial ingredients used only by Instinct.

Garlic
Dried Tomato Pomace
Canola Oil (Preserved With Mixed Tocopherols And Citric Acid)

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

Iams and Instinct both use the following harmful ingredients in many of their products:

Menadione Sodium Bisulfite Complex

Here are some of the harmful ingredients used only by Iams.

Blue 2
Red 40
Corn Oil
Yellow 5
Yellow 6
Ethoxyquin
Added Color
Menadione Dimethylpyrimidinol Bisulfite

Product Safety: Recall History of Iams & Instinct?

Iams has been recalled 2 times.

  • Aug. 14, 2013: Salmonella
  • July 30, 2010: Salmonella

Instinct has been recalled 2 times.

  • July 24, 2015: Salmonella
  • Feb. 15, 2013: Pieces of clear plastic in bag

Price Comparison: Which Brand Is More Expensive?

Dry Dog Food Iams Instinct
Per Pound $1.33 $3.31
Per Calorie $0.0008 $0.0017
Dry Cat Food Iams Instinct
Per Pound $1.78 $4.61
Per Calorie $0.0011 $0.0024
Wet Dog Food Iams Instinct
Per Pound $1.72 $5.97
Per Calorie $0.0035 $0.0111
Wet Cat Food Iams Instinct
Per Pound $5.72 $9.04
Per Calorie $0.0110 $0.0190

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 Iams or Instinct, 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 Iams or Instinct will depend on your shopping habits.

Pet owners who use our price comparison feature typically save more than 25% off retail prices for Iams and Instinct. 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 Iams Pet Foods

You can purchase Iams pet foods from the following stores:


38 Recipes In-Stock Today

29 Recipes In-Stock Today

28 Recipes In-Stock Today

1 Recipes In-Stock Today

Where To Buy Instinct Pet Foods

You can purchase Instinct pet food products from these retailers:


113 Recipes In-Stock Today

101 Recipes In-Stock Today

89 Recipes In-Stock Today

33 Recipes In-Stock Today


Type Of Pet Foods Available

Product Iams Instinct
Dry Dog Food 28 Recipes 27 Recipes
Wet Dog Food 10 Recipes 18 Recipes
Dog Treats
Dry Cat Food 12 Recipes 14 Recipes
Wet Cat Food 31 Recipes 17 Recipes
Cat Treats 2 Treats

Compare Pet Food Prices Across Multiple Pet Stores