On the Origin of “Beneful”

Nourishment for our furry friends is of the utmost importance for any dog owner. Knowing what to buy your best friend to fulfill that nourishment is a much different task! Beneful is one of the largest dog food brands in the world. Knowing this, it begs the question: what does “Beneful” actually mean? According to a spokesperson representing the company, it means “full of goodness.” It is much more clear if we break down the word “Beneful” itself. “Bene” can be used as a prefix meaning “well” or “good.” In fact, the word “bene” literally means “well” in the modern Italian language! The suffix “ful” is a short way of saying “full of.” If we combine the definition of the prefix, “bene,” and the definition of the suffix “ful,” we arrive at the definition of the word “Beneful,” meaning “full of good!” However, even if we did not know the definitions of the prefix and suffix, we can still deduce what “Beneful” might mean just by looking to words similar to it! For example, the word “beneficial” comes to mind when seeing the name “Beneful.” The current Oxford Dictionary definition of “beneficial is “resulting in good; favorable or advantageous.” From this alone, we can infer that the word “Beneful” must relate to being “beneficial!” Knowing all of this, it is safe to assume that the brand Beneful seeks to introduce a beneficial product to dogs and harbors a sense of choosing the “good” thing as a dog owner and animal lover.