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Vital Essentials vs Hill's Science Diet

Vital Essentials vs. Hill's Science Diet

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

Guaranteed Analysis: Hill's Science Diet vs. Vital Essentials

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.

Vital Essentials Dog Food vs. Hill's Science Diet Dog Food

Dry Dog Food Vital Essentials Hill's Science Diet
Crude Protein 51.7% 24.8%
Crude Fat 26.4% 14.6%
Crude Fiber 2.2% 4.1%
Wet/Canned Dog Food Vital Essentials Hill's Science Diet
Crude Protein 53.4% 25.9%
Crude Fat 33.1% 17.2%
Crude Fiber 6.6% 3.3%

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.

Vital Essentials dry dog foods clearly provides more protein than Hill's Science Diet. In fact, the difference between the protein content is roughly 26.91%, which is a significant amount. Similarly, Vital Essentials wet dog foods provide significantly more protein than Hill's Science Diet wet foods.


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, Vital Essentials dry dog food recipes contain 11.75% more fat than Hill's Science Diet recipes. Clearly, there is a significant difference between the fat content of Hill's Science Diet and Vital Essentials. Similarly, Vital Essentials wet dog foods provide significantly more protein than Hill's Science Diet wet foods.


Both brands provide roughly the same amount of crude fiber. For wet dog foods, Vital Essentials typically provides a little more fiber (about 3.34% more).

Vital Essentials Cat Food vs. Hill's Science Diet Cat Food

Dry Cat Food Vital Essentials Hill's Science Diet
Crude Protein 51.9% 35.5%
Crude Fat 18.2% 18.0%
Crude Fiber 3.3% 5.7%
Wet/Canned Cat Food Vital Essentials Hill's Science Diet
Crude Protein 60.9% 38.9%
Crude Fat 28.6% 21.9%
Crude Fiber 3.7% 4.2%

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 Vital Essentials provides significantly more protein. On average, Vital Essentials guarantees about 16.36% more protein than Hill's Science Diet. Similarly, Vital Essentials wet cat foods provide significantly 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):

  • 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

As you can see, Hill's Science Diet and Vital Essentials guarantee a similar amount of crude fat. For wet cat foods, Vital Essentials provides more fat (about 6.73% more).


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

Vital Essentials Pet Food Ingredients vs. Hill's Science Diet Pet Food Ingredients

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

Liver
Caramel
Corn Flour
Iron Oxide
Pea Protein
Pork Plasma
Poultry Fat
Animal Liver
Brewers Rice
Wheat Gluten
Caramel Color
Tomato Pomace
Beef By-Products
Corn Gluten Meal
Pork By-Products
Whole Grain Corn
Whole Grain Wheat
Powdered Cellulose
Dried Tomato Pomace
Pea Protein Concentrate
Soybean Protein Isolate

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 Hill's Science Diet.

Menadione Sodium Bisulfite Complex

Product Safety: Recall History of Vital Essentials & Hill's Science Diet?

Vital Essentials has been recalled 4 times.

  • July 8, 2015: Listeria monocytogenes
  • Jan. 15, 2016: Salmonella
  • Feb. 24, 2018: Salmonella
  • April 16, 2018: Salmonella

Hill's Science Diet has been recalled 2 times.

  • Jan. 31, 2019: elevated levels of Vitamin D
  • March 20, 2019: elevated levels of Vitamin D

Price Comparison: Which Brand Is More Expensive?

Dry Dog Food Vital Essentials Hill's Science Diet
Per Pound $31.24 $2.19
Per Calorie $0.0142 $0.0014
Dry Cat Food Vital Essentials Hill's Science Diet
Per Pound $38.77 $3.16
Per Calorie $0.0220 $0.0019

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 Vital Essentials or Hill's Science Diet, 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 Vital Essentials or Hill's Science Diet will depend on your shopping habits.

Pet owners who use our price comparison feature typically save more than 25% off retail prices for Vital Essentials and Hill's Science Diet. 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 Vital Essentials Pet Foods

You can purchase Vital Essentials pet foods from the following stores:


45 Recipes In-Stock Today

43 Recipes In-Stock Today

11 Recipes In-Stock Today

22 Recipes In-Stock Today

Where To Buy Hill's Science Diet Pet Foods

You can purchase Hill's Science Diet pet food products from these retailers:


127 Recipes In-Stock Today

107 Recipes In-Stock Today

132 Recipes In-Stock Today

35 Recipes In-Stock

Type Of Pet Foods Available

Product Vital Essentials Hill's Science Diet
Dry Dog Food 32 Recipes
Wet Dog Food 30 Recipes
Dog Treats 30 Treats 15 Treats
Dry Cat Food 18 Recipes
Wet Cat Food 38 Recipes
Cat Treats 8 Treats

Compare Pet Food Prices Across Multiple Pet Stores