Is Zeal Canada Comparable to Ziwi Peak? Balanced Air Dried Raw Pet Food

April 4, 2023

In the middle of February, I was ready to restock my dog treats stash with more balanced air dried dog food. My go-to dry dog food to use during training tends to be Ziwi Peak because of their selection of limited ingredient recipes that my dogs seem to really enjoy. Ziwi is not the cheapest pet food on the market, but I love the quality of their air-dried dog food and when used as training treats instead of being fed as a full meal, Ziwi can end up being more affordable for me.

Since there are always random sales throughout the year, I started searching through different online retailers to see who was offering the best price on Ziwi. To my surprise, I came across a brand I had never previously heard of and this brand seemed to be positioning themselves as Ziwi's competition - another AAFCO raw air-dried pet food that is cheaper than Ziwi Peak (what sorcery is this)?!? 

Zeal Canada Pet Food is a Canadian pet food brand (duh) currently being carried on Chewy's website - for those of you in the United States.

Zeal claims their recipes are formulated by veterinary dieticians and these pet food recipes meet/often exceed AAFCO standards. Zeal offers a range of limited ingredient gently air-dried recipes for cats and dogs. They also offer a small range of pet foods that include some freeze-dried ingredients as well.

Zeal Canada's website claims the company uses locally and naturally sourced whole food ingredients in their formulas, which are free from artificial additives, preservatives or colours. They also include supplements to balance their cat food and dog food recipes, which is not a problem, especially when dealing with limited ingredient, shelf-stable formulas.

Because this was my first time trying their products, I purchased the following Zeal Canada pet food recipes:


When feeding Ziwi I already know what to expect when it comes to my dogs' stool - colour and consistency based on the recipe fed. Given the close similarities between Zeal and Ziwi, I figured my dogs would tolerate the Zeal Canada dog food recipes just fine.

Overall, the colour of my dog's stool was normal based on the recipe fed, but it was generally softer.

When my dogs eat their DIY balanced raw food recipes, their stool is nothing short of perfection - small and firm. When my dogs eat raw premade pet food grinds, their stool does change - sometimes becoming slightly softer (dependant on the fat content) and even larger (dependant on the amount of fiber). But when my dogs eat Ziwi Peak regularly (as a meal, which does happen, as I like to have dry food on hand in case of emergency), their stool is still not quite as soft as it was when my dogs ate Zeal Canada as a meal (for photos, check out my instagram "Poo" highlight).


In regards to using Zeal as a training treat, it was very similar in shape and size to Ziwi Peak (I presume this to be deliberate). I found Zeal to be much lighter in weight in comparison and not very strong in smell.

One thing I have come to understand about my dogs is that the stinkier or stronger the smell of their treats, the more they seem to enjoy them. When training my dogs or taking them on walks, I am always in need of a balanced dry food that they find enticing, as well as, a high value delicious treat that is reserved for when we are in the presence of triggers - ie. strange dogs or people.

While my dogs thoroughly enjoyed getting a taste of Zeal Canada's Beef, Turkey, and Salmon dog foods while at home, they did not seem to have the same reaction to it as they do when fed Ziwi Peak.

This does not mean anything is wrong with the food, I think my dogs just prefer a stinkier smelling pet food (lol). I understand that many consumers often avoid buying certain treats or food for their pets based on the smell, but I tend to put that aside when feeding my dogs because my opinion on the scent of a particular food or treat has absolutely no influence over my dogs liking or eating it.


Here is a cost comparison between Zeal Canada and Ziwi Peak:

Zeal Canada Gently Beef Recipe Grain-Free Air-Dried Dog Food

Chewy Price

2.2lb bag - $46.99

Ziwi Peak Original Air-Dried Beef Recipe for Dogs

2.2lb bag - $54.78

Zeal Canada Gently Chicken Flavored Air-Dried Dog Food

Chewy Price

1lb bag - $23.99

Ziwi Peak Original Air-Dried Chicken Recipe for Dogs

1lb bag - $29.58


Even though I was excited to find a cheaper option in Zeal Canada Pet Food, my dogs have spoken - they prefer the more expensive and stinkier smelling option (surprise).

Maybe in the future their palate will change in favour of Zeal, but until then please pray for my wallet...


I hope sharing my experience feeding this new air-dried dog food is helpful to some of you, especially our Canadian followers who struggle to find high quality pet foods!

Interested in learning more about other balanced raw premade food for cats and dogs?

Follow me on instagram @nolorlin for more raw feeding content & raw pet food recipes!


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