The Cost to Feed Raw Pet Food

What's the Real Price words on a tag to ask for the actual value

One of the biggest hurdles that keeps pet parents from a transitioning to a raw diet is the cost. It is no secret that a commercially made raw dog food is more expensive than kibble. But when everything is factored together, how much are you really saving by buying kibble? Let’s take a look at exactly how much in this blog by Nicole Lindsley.

Cost: Kibble vs. 100% Raw Dog Food

Many people feel that the price of raw food is beyond their financial reach.  It is my argument and belief that with a little creative financial juggling, anyone can afford a raw diet.  If the only food you feed is a high quality, grain free kibble and you want to transition to a raw diet you will spend approximately 1.5 times more to do so. You may be thinking “Whoa, that is too much… there is no way I can afford that,” but hold on, the dollar amounts are not as alarming.donationdog

I calculated the feeding cost of five top grain-free dry pet foods by first determining the weight of a cup of kibble (4oz per cup). Then I determined the recommended feeding amount per cup and solved for the weight that it represented.  In the end I determined that the average daily cost to feed a grain-free diet to a 50 pound dog is $1.66. If you were to transition to feeding 100% Steve’s Real Food it would cost you $2.38 more each day. That seems like a lot, but it is about the cost of one cup of coffee and quite a bit less if you get the fancy lattes or cappuccinos. It is even less if you have a smaller dog such as a 25 pound Cocker Spaniel who would only cost $1.19 more.

Cost: 75% Kibble & 25% Canned vs. 100% Raw Dog Food

The cost difference gets even less if you are feeding a mixed diet such as canned and raw. I calculated the daily feeding amounts and cost for feeding a quality kibble such as NOW by Petcurean and a canned diet made by PureVita. If you feed 75% kibble and 25% canned then you are spending an about $2.37 per day. To go from that diet to Steve's would cost a $1.67 more per day. That is just over a 3/4th increase for an astronomical improvement in quality and nutrition. Remember, with a kibble and canned diet you are still missing out on any type of enzyme-dense raw nutrition.

Cost: 85% Kibble & 15% Freeze Dry vs 100% Raw Dog Food

A lot of people have decided to add raw nutrition to a dry diet by adding a freeze dry product as a topper. To get the full advantage of the raw nutrition from these products, it is recommended to add 8oz of freeze dry food topper to a kibble diet. That comes out to be about 15% of the recommended amount compared to a 100% freeze dry diet. Therefore, if you are feeding NOW by Petcurean 85% of the time and Stella and Chewy’s 15%, then you are spending about $5.28 per day, over a $1.00 more than if you were to feed a 100% Steve’s Real Food diet.

Raw Brands Vary In Price

group - 500px with shadowIt is important to note that all these price comparisons are for transitioning to Steve’s Real Food and not other raw brands. Many raw foods are $1 to $2 more expensive per pound than Steve’s Real Food.  We believe that all pets should be fed a raw diet 100% of the time and this is why we keep our MSRP per pound around $4.50. We do not do this through low quality ingredients, we do this by keeping our margins low and offering large package sizes. If the average Steve’s Real Food customer purchases a 13.5# box compared to a Stella and Chewy’s customer who buys 6#, we are selling more volume at a lower cost.


sick dogVeterinarian Bills:  People who feed their pets a wholesome, raw diet will see a great increase in health for their pet.  Many chronic diseases can be managed or eliminated through proper nutrition. This means if your pet is having health issues that are requiring expensive vet visits, shots, or medication, the need for those expenses can be eliminated through feeding raw.  You will save money in the long run by spending more on their dog food because it can save you medical costs in the future.

Your pet is worth it: 
 If you are reading blogs on the internet about raw pet food, then it is reasonable to assume you have a healthy obsession with giving your dog (or cat!) a good return on the love and adoration they lavish on you.  Your animal depends on you to make sure they are safe, healthy, and happy.  They are trusting you, and you have accepted that responsibility, because you know what we know - they make life good.  Your pet enriches your life, and feeding a healthy, raw diet - ensuring their long term health and happiness - is totally worth paying for.

In Summary:

  • Going from feeding Kibble to Raw Dog Food it will cost you one cup of coffee each day.
  • Going from feeding a Kibble & Canned Diet to raw dog food will cost you a cup of yogurt.
  • Going from feeding kibble with freeze dry topper to raw dog food will actually save you money.
  • Raw food keeps your pet healthy and happy, and they are worth it.

Donald Brownfield

6 years ago

I have had two of my dogs put down in the last 15 or so years due to cancer,the last one was the first week in December the 3rd to be exact, and I am sure it was due to the garage they call dog food, I just followed the breeders advice and fed my dog's what the breeder was feeding his dogs. To make a long story short I feel as though I failed my dogs Don Brownfield is my names and if you could spare the time I love the opportunity to talk to you. I am a retired carpenter in my mid 70's and would like to think that my dogs will be around after I am long gone.


6 years ago


I currently feed my two cats Primal Raw (turkey). Primal just put up their price by $2 per 3lb bag, which is a lot. I buy from Meat for Cats & Dogs (in Portland, Oregon), and because of the volume they sell, I am on the frequent buyer plan by which I buy 10 bags of Primal and then get 1 free.

Here are my questions:

1. Would you consider offering a frequent buyer program to customers via Meat in Portland? They would likely administer it for you the way they do for Primal customers.

2. My cats don't like beef and I'm not convinced that chicken is handled as well as other meats (such as turkey) and so try to avoid chicken, especially as the main ingredient. Do you have any turkey varieties? Do you have any varieties without chicken? If so, are the prices higher?

Thanks for getting back to me. I look forward to your response especially since I know Meat is open to doing more business with your company.


CJ Milton

6 years ago


Please let me know how and where I can purchase your raw food.

Thank you,


Brandy Kirk

6 years ago

Where do you buy Steve's Real Food ?

Grace Hoxsey

6 years ago

Several months ago I switched from a raw food diet from Primal to Steve's for my bichon. A month ago, I acquired yet another bichon who is only 4 months old. They both enjoy the Steve's beef formula that you sell. And I always put a splash of your raw goat milk yogurt on each meal for them. They love the beef and pork flavors but hate the turkey. I find it to be an overall great food for the dogs.

Aspen Anderson

6 years ago


So glad to hear your dogs are loving the Beef and the Pork! Thanks for your feedback!

connie peach

5 years ago

i currently feed 4c kibble and want to transition over to raw. after transition is done, how much raw food would equal the 4c of kibble he is currently getting? don't want to over or under feed. he is a lean Belgian malinois that weighs 80 plus lbs.


5 years ago

For a 80lb dog you would feed 4 patties a day. Once you are completely switched over and you feel like he needs more, then up this food to 4 1/2 patties a day.

Is your dog food real raw or is it freeze dried

4 years ago

Is your dog food real raw or is it freeze dried


4 years ago

We make frozen raw diets, and we also make a freeze dried.

Jerry laveroni

3 years ago

What is considered the best raw dried dog food for good body weight and health—- this would be 100% raw no kibble

Nicole Lindsley

3 years ago

All our freeze dried diets are excellent and will promote healthy body weight. The Turkey diet is one for the more popular for weight management.

Google Review

  • My dogs LOVE their new food!! I used to feed them dry kibble and they would leave their food in the bowls for 2 days before they would eat. Now they wake me up in the morning ready to eat. They also have so much more energy, they act like they are puppies again. The customer service is awesome! Too bad all companies don't have this kind of service. I will continue to buy Steve's Real Food for my dogs.

    Kelley Dillon Avatar
    Kelley Dillon
  • CONVENIENT, RELIABLE, DOGS LOVE THE FOOD I switched my dogs to a raw diet about 2 months ago. My older dog was panting a lot and he had a potato sized growth on his shoulder. The growth is now the size of an egg and his excessive panting has stopped. My younger dog was overweight despite the fact that she was very active and on a strict low calorie diet. She has slimmed down quite a bit.

    Trish C Avatar
    Trish C
  • We were skeptical of feeding raw. Finally we decided to take the plunge. The first surprise was, my dogs loved it. And the goat milk yogurt is a complete hit! They all love it. We had one small issue with the shipping and after one email everything was taken care of. But now that it's been several months we have noticed many other things. None of my dogs chew on their feet anymore. None of my dogs have itchy flaky skin anymore. And they are all pretty and shiny with tons of energy.

    Denise Moitoza Avatar
    Denise Moitoza
  • My dog was a picky eater and overweight. After 4 months of eating this raw diet he is almost at his recommended weight. I no longer have to coax him to eat by doctoring up his kibble. He eats the food as is and empties his bowl right away.

    Carrie Thompson Avatar
    Carrie Thompson
  • I wanted to give a shout out to Tara at the corporate office. She really went above and beyond! I had several questions about switching my dog over to raw food and the transition that's involved. She met with me in person and took the time to listen and gave me some great suggestions/feedback to my questions. She shared what her own dog went through and how raw dog food helped. Tara made me feel comfortable and was so kind and thoughtful to take the time out of her busy day to be so helpful. My dog is LOVING the food and has been transitioning very smoothly. Thanks so much for being so awesome, Tara. It meant a lot to me and because of the experience I had and the kindness you showed to me, I will continue to be a grateful customer and will recommend Steve's to all my fellow dog moms and dads.

    Susan Romney Avatar
    Susan Romney

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Steve's Real Food

2034 East Fort Union
Cottonwood , UT 84121
United States