Iams vs Primal

Iams vs. Primal

In this comparison article for Iams vs Primal, we'll highlight the key differences between these two pet food brands. To properly compare Iams and Primal, 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 Primal 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 Primal Review Page.

Guaranteed Analysis: Primal 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. Primal Dog Food

Dry Dog Food Iams Primal
Crude Protein 27.4% 49.2%
Crude Fat 14.6% 31.7%
Crude Fiber 5.1% 3.9%

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.

Primal dry dog foods clearly provides more protein than Iams. In fact, the difference between the protein content is roughly 21.82%, which is a significant amount.


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

On average, Primal dry dog food recipes contain 17.11% more fat than Iams recipes. Clearly, there is a significant difference between the fat content of Iams and Primal.


Both brands provide roughly the same amount of crude fiber.

Iams Cat Food vs. Primal Cat Food

Dry Cat Food Iams Primal
Crude Protein 36.2% 54.7%
Crude Fat 16.8% 28.8%
Crude Fiber 4.3% 3.9%

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.

When you look at the average percentages of crude protein for dry cat food, it's clear that Primal provides significantly more protein. On average, Primal guarantees about 18.56% more protein than Iams.


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

The comparison table above shows that Primal dry cat foods provide significantly more fat than Iams. More specifically, Primal guarantees at least 12.08% more fat.


As you can see, Primal and Iams guarantee a similar amount of crude fiber.

Iams Pet Food Ingredients vs. Primal Pet Food Ingredients

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

Liver
Caramel
Beet Pulp
Corn Meal
Canola Oil
Corn Grits
Iron Oxide
Canola Meal
Fish Digest
Ground Corn
Pea Protein
Brewers Rice
Wheat Gluten
Caramel Color
Tomato Pomace
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)

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

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 Sodium Bisulfite Complex
Menadione Dimethylpyrimidinol Bisulfite

Product Safety: Recall History of Iams & Primal?

Iams has been recalled 2 times.

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

Primal has been recalled 2 times.

  • March 13, 2015: low thiamine level
  • Dec. 22, 2017: incorrect bone grind size

Price Comparison: Which Brand Is More Expensive?

Dry Dog Food Iams Primal
Per Pound $1.48 $41.21
Per Calorie $0.0009 $0.0155
Dry Cat Food Iams Primal
Per Pound $1.74 $42.76
Per Calorie $0.0010 $0.0175

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 Primal, 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 Primal 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 Primal. 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:







Where To Buy Primal Pet Foods

You can purchase Primal pet food products from these retailers:









Type Of Pet Foods Available

Product Iams Primal
Dry Dog Food 28 Recipes
Wet Dog Food 10 Recipes
Dog Treats 8 Treats
Dry Cat Food 14 Recipes
Wet Cat Food 31 Recipes
Cat Treats 2 Treats

Compare Pet Food Prices Across Multiple Pet Stores

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