Every dog owner wants what’s best for their dog. The trouble is not all dogs are the same.
Pet food manufacturers are businesses just like any other and they’re in it to make money. That means, in many cases, they formulate their products to appeal to the widest customer base possible while simultaneously minimizing costs and maximizing profits.
This isn’t to say all pet food manufacturers are bad – that’s certainly not true. All it means is that your job as a responsible dog owner can be difficult, especially when it comes to weeding out the good from the bad in order to choose a healthy, high-quality diet for your dog.
After all, the quality of your dog’s diet is directly related to his health and wellbeing, so it’s a big decision!
If you’re concerned with the quality of your dog’s diet, we highly recommend fresh dog food. Fresh food for dogs is typically made by smaller companies with limited ingredients in company-owned kitchens which helps improve quality and safety. Plus, it’s cooked at lower temperatures and served fresh which boosts the nutritional integrity of the product.
There are plenty of fresh dog food delivery companies out there, so how do you know which one is the right choice for your dog? We can’t decide for you, but we can provide you with information and advice.
In this article, we’ll take a closer look at Spot & Tango, one of the top fresh dog food subscriptions on the market. In addition to fresh food, this company now offers fresh dry food as an alternative. We’ll get into the details of the company’s history and their products to help you decide if it’s a good fit.
Why You’ll Love Spot & Tango:
Not only does Spot & Tango offer a premium selection of fresh dog food recipes, but they now offer a unique product described as “Fresh Dry” food – Unkibble. No matter which product you choose, Spot & Tango customizes your dog’s meal plan for his unique nutrient and calorie requires to support optimal health. You’ll enjoy the convenience of regular deliveries and your dog will love the flavor and nutrition that comes from fresh, wholesome, natural ingredients.
Keep reading to learn everything you need to know about Spot & Tango dog food.
What Should You Know About Spot & Tango?
Spot & Tango is a fresh dog food company founded by Russell Breuer along with his spouse. This company offers what they call “dog food reimagined.” Customers have the option to build a personalized meal plan for their dogs with honest guidance from nutrition experts.
Not only does Spot & Tango offer fresh food in meal plans customized for your dog’s needs, but their food meets the requirements for the human-grade classification. In essence, human-grade dog food is food made with ingredients that meet USDA certification for human consumption and the products are made in human food facilities. To put it plainly, it’s better than the average kibble.
In order to really understand Spot & Tango, you’ll need to know a little more about them. Here’s everything you need to know about the company and their fresh dog food:
What Products Do They Offer?
Spot & Tango currently only offers dog food products, both fresh dog food and what they call Fresh Dry food. There are three fresh dog food recipes and three dry recipes.
Here is a quick overview of the two different product lines:
- Fresh – Made with 12 main ingredients or fewer, Spot & Tango’s fresh dog food features real animal proteins like turkey, beef, and lamb with nutritious gluten-free carbohydrates. All three recipes are made with 100% fresh, human-grade ingredients and are complete and balanced.
- Fresh Dry – As an alternative to their fresh dog food recipes, Spot & Tango offers UnKibble Fresh Dry food. Instead of being processed at high heat, this product is gently dried to maximize nutritional integrity. All recipes are made with 100% fresh, human-grade ingredients and free from fillers and artificial additives.
Both the fresh and fresh dry product lines from Spot & Tango contain three different recipes. Here’s a quick preview of the three recipes in each line:
|Recipe Name||% Protein||% Fat||% Fiber||% Moisture||Kcal/Kg|
|Turkey & Red Quinoa Fresh||13.69||5.86||1.44||68.5||Unlisted|
|Beef & Millet Fresh||11.85||5.85||1.04||69.84||Unlisted|
|Lamb & Brown Rice Fresh||11.8||6.64||2.64||70.1||Unlisted|
|Duck & Salmon UnKibble||29.68||25.3||1.88||2.29||4,368|
|Beef & Barley UnKibble||26.58||16.43||3.18||2.04||4,749|
|Chicken & Brown Rice UnKibble||26.58||16.43||2.5||3.96||3,921|
All of Spot & Tango’s recipes are formulated by an industry-leading veterinary nutritionist then evaluated by a team of veterinarians. Each recipe is guaranteed to be complete and balanced for dogs in all life stages according to AAFCO nutritional levels.
Where is it Made?
Spot & Tango uses human-grade ingredients sourced from local farms in the United States and their fresh dog food recipes are made in USDA kitchens in New York. Spot & Tango’s Unkibble Fresh Dry food is prepared in a state-of-the-art facility in Wisconsin. These products are made using a blend of USDA proteins with fresh fruit, veggies, and starches, gently pasteurized at a low temperature to ensure safety without compromising nutritional integrity.
How Much Does It Cost?
If you’ve done any research on commercial dog food, you already know that prices vary widely. In many cases, price is equated to quality but that doesn’t necessarily mean all expensive dog foods are good (or vice versa). That being said, you can generally expect fresh dog food to cost a bit more than dry.
When it comes to the price of fresh dog food, Spot & Tango is a little on the higher end of the spectrum. Where many fresh dog food companies charge $2 to $10 per day, averaging $14 to $70 per week. Spot & Tango states their fresh plans start at $15 per week but, as you may already have guessed, the cost goes up the more food your dog needs based on his size and activity level.
To give you an estimated cost, we’ll use our 30-pound male test dog. He’s a little lazy but he doesn’t have any health issues and he’s been neutered. Spot & Tango suggested a fresh dog food plan started at $4.56 per day for the Turkey & Red Quinoa recipe ($4.90 for beef, $6.96 for lamb). Selecting all three recipes yielded a weekly cost of $38.07 with the 20% first-time discount, normally $47.59 per week.
If you’re not ready to spend that much on your dog, you can choose the Topper Plan where you mix Spot & Tango with your dog’s current diet. The other option is to go with UnKibble, the Fresh Dry food instead, which we found would cost us $2.56 per day.
Does Spot & Tango Have Any Recalls?
Fresh dog food is expensive, there’s no way around it. If you’re going to invest in a pricy diet for your pet, you want to make sure that it’s good. Spot & Tango offers a money-back guarantee on their products that covers you if your dog doesn’t like it but that’s not the only thing to think about.
The pet food industry isn’t as closely regulated in the United States as human food, but there are some regulations in place. The FDA responds to customer complaints and does some of their own testing to make sure the products on pet store shelves are safe and accurately described. When there’s a problem with a product, the FDA or the company may issue a recall to remove it from the shelves.
Just because a company has a product recall doesn’t necessarily mean it’s bad – recalls can be for serious things like contaminated ingredients but also for simple things like labeling errors.
Regardless, you’ll be glad to know that Spot & Tango doesn’t have any product recalls in their history. This isn’t necessarily a guarantee of quality in all cases, but for this company it supports the company’s claims that they take great care to ensure the safety and quality of their products. Spot & Tango uses only human-grade ingredients and makes their products in human food facilities, all tested and approved by the FDA and USDA.
How Do You Order Spot & Tango?
Spot & Tango doesn’t currently offer samples and their products are not sold in stores. The only way to purchase their fresh food or kibble is to become a subscriber. You’ll receive regular monthly shipments of pre-portioned food sent right to your door, automatically billed to your credit card.
Here are the steps you’ll follow to subscribe to this company:
- Create an online profile using your name and email address
- Provide information about your dog, including name and spay/neuter status
- Indicate your dog’s breed, birthday, and body type
- Fill in your dog’s current body weight, activity level, and dietary restrictions
- Choose from Fresh food or Unkibble Fresh Dry dog food
- Select your dog’s recipes and choose a meal plan
Once everything has been filled in, you simply provide your shipping and billing information to get started with your subscription. Spot & Tango gets you started with a 2-week trial (usually at 20% off for first timers), after which you’ll be billed for and shipped 4 weeks of food at a time.
Spot & Tango Raw Dog Food Pros and Cons
As your dog’s caretaker, it’s your job to know what’s best for him. Unfortunately, it isn’t always obvious what’s “best” when there are a lot of options to choose from.
Generally speaking, fresh food for dogs is a more nutritious option than highly processed kibble, but every fresh food company has its ups and downs. We encourage you to do your own research to make sure you know everything you need to know about Spot & Tango before making up your mind.
Here are some of the pros for Spot & Tango:
- Nutritious recipes made with fresh, human-grade ingredients
- Formulated by veterinary nutritionists, meets AAFCO requirements
- Meals are pre-portioned according to your dog’s calorie needs
- Each recipe contains 12 or fewer simple, natural ingredients
Here are some of the cons for Spot & Tango:
- Limited options for proteins (turkey, beef, lamb)
- Fairly expensive, even for fresh dog food
- Food needs to thaw overnight before feeding (or in cool water)
At the end of the day, all we want is for you and your dog to be happy. Hopefully our honest review of Spot & Tango is just what you need to make a decision about how to make that happen!
Spot & Tango Raw Dog Food FAQs
Is Spot & Tango grain-free?
Spot & Tango offers two grain-free options and one grain-inclusive option for fresh food. The Turkey & Red Quinoa and Beef & Millet recipes are grain-free while the Lamb & Brown Rice is not – all three are, however, gluten-free. Only the Duck & Salmon UnKibble recipe is grain-free.
Is Spot & Tango a good option for dogs with food allergies?
It really depends on your dog’s allergies. Spot & Tango offers three fresh dog food recipes, two of which are grain-free which might help. Unfortunately, both beef and lamb are fairly common allergens for dogs. That being said, Spot & Tango formulates their recipes to include 12 main ingredients or less, so that’s definitely a bonus for dogs with allergies and sensitivities.
How do I get samples of Spot & Tango dog food?
Spot & Tango doesn’t currently offer samples of their food, but you can try a two-week trial at a 20% discount (or more). If you don’t like the product, you can contact customer service to talk about a refund before your trial period ends.
Why is Unkibble less expensive than fresh food?
If you’re concerned about the cost of fresh food for dogs, Spot & Tango offers UnKibble as an alternative. This scoopable dried kibble is made with fresh, human-grade ingredients but it is dried to keep it shelf-stable. UnKibble costs much less than Spot & Tango fresh food because it can be stored more easily. Because it doesn’t require refrigeration or dry ice, Spot & Tango saves money processing and shipping the kibble and passes those savings on to the customer.
Can I control my subscription online?
Yes, when you subscribe to Spot & Tango you’ll create an online account from which you can control your orders. You’ll be able to adjust your dog’s portion and rush, delay, or skip a shipment as needed. You can make changes to your shipping/billing information and even change recipes. If you want to cancel your subscription you can do so in the customer portal or contact customer service directly.
Is the packaging environmentally friendly?
Spot & Tango prepares their fresh dog food recipes to order then everything is flash-frozen to lock in freshness and shipped to your door within days. Their packaging is designed to keep the product frozen until it arrives on your doorstep. Your dog’s food will arrive in pre-portioned bags packed in a cardboard box (recyclable) with biodegradable insulation and dry ice.