Does your dog seem unwell after eating, vomits frequently, or emits a funky smell? A sensitive stomach may be to blame (visit your vet to make sure). Just like humans, dogs can have sensitive stomachs, food sensitivities, or allergies. If either is the case, you probably need to adjust your pup’s diet. This will improve their wellness and reduce unpleasant, um, “outcomes.” But what can you safely feed your pooch to make him or her feel better? Study Finds looked into the best food for dogs with sensitive stomachs to help you find gentle nutrition for many happy meals.
To keep your buddy healthy and comfortable, first figure out whether a food intolerance (such as lactose or gluten intolerance) or an allergy is the cause of your dog’s digestive issues. Eliminating any triggers from the diet will improve any symptoms. A high-quality diet of easily digestible food and maybe the use of a probiotic should bring further relief. In addition to being easily digestible and high-quality, dog food for sensitive stomachs should be low in fat and carbohydrates. It should further be free of gluten or additives.
Our dogs are important to us. Everything we do, from their diet to their training, impacts their behavior and happiness. In fact, a recent study examining dog and owner relationships, reveals that the way you “parent” your pup impacts their behavior and cognition as an adult dog similar to how parenting impacts children. So, give your fur baby the best nutrients to grow into a strong, healthy companion.
Because sensitivities are so common, there are lots of foods for dogs with sensitive stomachs on the market. To find the best, Study Finds went through expert reviews on ten websites to create our top five list of the best food for dogs with sensitive stomachs below. Do you have any products to add? Please let us know in the comments. (Before you make any changes to your dog’s diet, consult with your vet to make sure it’s safe.)
The List: Best Food For Dogs With Sensitive Stomachs, According To Experts
Products by Hill’s Science Diet, specifically this one, dominated the expert recommendations. Hill’s Science Diet Adult Sensitive Stomach & Skin is The Spruce’s top choice for sensitive pups. The prescription-free kibble contains “natural ingredients, primarily real chicken meat, and [is] blended with prebiotic fiber (from beet pulp) to facilitate and support digestive health and a balanced gut microbiome. […] It is highly rated by human customers who report positive dining and digesting experiences for the canines in their homes.”
In addition to real chicken and fiber, this dog food “also contains vitamin E and omega-6 fatty acids that promote healthy skin and a radiant coat,” writes PureWow. “Your pup will feel good and look good too.”
And DogFoodAdvisor keeps it short and sweet by simply stating the chow is “a balanced option that includes prebiotic fiber to encourage the growth of natural gut bacteria and help regulate stools. Recommended by veterinarians.”
A close runner-up to our number 1 was Purina Pro Plan’s sensitive stomach food. For Canine Journal, its kibble is the best dry food for dogs with sensitive stomachs. “This best-selling easy-to-digest dog food comes highly recommended by many veterinarians (and satisfied pet owners) for pups suffering from food sensitivities and allergies. It contains real animal protein (salmon, turkey, or lamb) as the first ingredient and has no corn, wheat, soy, preservatives, or artificial ingredients.”
Plus, dogs of many tastes, ages, and sizes can enjoy this recipe: “Pro Plan Sensitive Skin & Stomach also comes in small and large breed formulas, as well as canned wet food if that’s what your pup prefers.”
Purina Pro Plan Sensitive Skin and Stomach is also one of Veterinarians.org’s top picks. “It offers a high-protein formula using real salmon as the first ingredient. It also contains oatmeal that helps soothe [dogs’] stomachs and improves digestion. The product is further enriched with sunflower oil which is rich in omega-6 fatty acids that help with healthy skin and coat. The dog food also contains prebiotic fiber that replenishes specific intestinal bacteria for digestive health.”
Discover points out that it “was developed by veterinarians and nutritionists to help support the health of your dog.” In addition, “this food is made in the USA with high-quality ingredients.”
Blue Buffalo makes grain-free dog food with high-quality ingredients – a good start for dogs with sensitive stomachs! As the name suggests, this food only uses a few ingredients: The Basics Limited Ingredient Dog Food “is made of a single protein source,” writes Dog Food Specialist.
“The fewer the ingredients in your dog food, the fewer opportunities there are for their tummy to react to a particular ingredient,” explains Rover. “This turkey-forward recipe also includes vegetables like potatoes, peas, and pumpkin,” as well as “a variety of ingredients to support gentle digestion.”
And according to PureWow, additional ingredients include “Blue Buffalo’s proprietary LifeSource Bits—a combination of selected antioxidants, minerals, and vitamins picked by veterinarians and animal nutritionists to support your pup’s overall health and wellness.”
Voted as “best wet food” for dogs with sensitive stomachs by The Spruce, “this gut-friendly wet food provides tasty nutrition for dogs struggling with diarrhea, vomiting, appetite loss, and other gastrointestinal issues.” While “this food requires a prescription from a veterinarian […] you can buy it from pet-supply sites like Chewy and Petco by entering your prescription info at checkout.”
For Dog Food Specialists, Royal Canin Gastrointestinal comes in third place on their top eight list. This is “because of its low-fat content. Thus, [it’s] ideal for dogs with pancreatitis too. The only drawback is [that] the quality of ingredients is low compared to our top two choices.”
That aside, for DogFoodAdvisor, Royal Canin Gastrointestinal is a “highly digestible, low-fat formula that’s ideal for treating a wide array of canine digestive disorders.” A word of caution for dogs with allergies: This food is grain inclusive.
5. Tie: Canidae Grain-Free Pure Dry Dog Food and Diamond Care Sensitive Stomach Recipe
With an equal amount of expert recommendations, it’s a tie for the fifth place on our list. Both products offer less-usual protein sources.
Are you suspecting an allergy in your dog? “If you’ve tried the usual protein suspects (chicken, beef, turkey) without success, you may want to consider one of Canidae’s Pure Limited Ingredient line of recipes,” suggests Canine Journal. “You can choose from duck, bison, wild boar, lamb, goat & venison, and more.”
The Pure Limited Ingredient line is further “grain-free and does not contain any artificial colors, flavors, or preservatives. This food is made in the USA with high-quality ingredients,” says Discover.
The protein in Diamond Care’s sensitive stomach formula is egg-based. According to Rover, “this grain-free formulation from Diamond Care is packed with essential nutrients for your pup (including antioxidants and omega-3 and -6 fatty acids). It’s also formulated with easily digestible proteins and a fiber blend to support digestive health.”
“Another advantage to this dog food is the company itself,” writes PetKeen about Diamond Care. “Made in the United States, the family-owned company strives to use scientific protocols and safety measures to keep your pet healthy. There is no corn, wheat, artificial colors, fillers, or additives included in their formula.”
- Canine Journal
- The Spruce
- Dog Food Specialist
- K9 Of Mine
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Note: This article was not paid for nor sponsored. StudyFinds is not connected to nor partnered with any of the brands mentioned and receives no compensation for its recommendations. This post may contain affiliate links.