Like humans, dogs have different nutritional needs. For small pooches with tummy problems, the best dry dog food for small dogs will be a good choice. It’s important that you scrutinize the ingredients and nutrient profile of the product to ensure that it won’t trigger any allergies or cause intolerances.
|DOG FOOD||PRODUCT NAME||EXPERT RATING||PRICE|
|Royal Canin Health Nutrition |
– Mini Mature
|Blue Buffalo Wilderness |
Grain-Free Dog Food
Our dogs are always there when we need them. It’s just right that we equate this with love and proper nourishment. Just because their bodies are smaller doesn’t mean their needs are inferior to that of larger breeds.
The food that we gave to our dogs reflects our way of pawrenthood. If it’s packed with fillers and artificial ingredients, we are neglecting one of the biggest aspects of our little dog’s life.
Don’t skimp on your dog’s food. Although you can save a few bucks by purchasing a cheaper formula, you might end up paying more in the vet’s clinic.
More than the brand, you should look into the food’s component, dog owner feedback, and the needs of your unique pooch.
Nutrition of small breeds
Small dogs need to eat more calories than larger ones. Why? This is due to the fact that small doggo has a higher metabolic rate and they tend to burn more calories compared to their larger cousins.
However, small dogs can’t gobble large amounts of food in one feeding. So to avoid over-feeding without compromising their nutritional needs, the best dry dog food for puppies and small breeds are made to be nutrient-dense.
But what do you have to look for if you’re shopping for the best dry dog food for small dogs? Sure thing, there are tons of options in the market, but not all are worth the money. Here are some of the points to remember:
Minerals are compounds that aren’t organically available in the body but much needed for good health. However, your small doggo doesn’t need all the minerals. Also, most of the minerals your dog needs should be in trace amounts only. This includes heavy metals like cobalt, copper, iron, and more.
On the other hand, your dog needs a higher consistency of calcium, phosphorus, potassium, sodium, and magnesium. Still, it’s important to watch out for excessive levels that can be harmful to small breeds.
Sequestered, chelated, and complex proteinate minerals are high-quality and can be easily absorbed on your doggo’s tummy. Meanwhile, there are also phosphate, oxide, and sulfate minerals that are low in quality and difficult to absorb. Stir clear of dog food products with these minerals if your pooch has intolerances.
You’ve probably heard about vitamins a million times and how important it is for the body. These organic compounds are used to support metabolic processes and to boost the immune system. Most of the time, this should come in small amounts for smaller breeds.
Take note that we, humans, can make Vitamin D inside our bodies. However, dogs can’t self-produce any vitamin. This is why you need to supply it to them in proper amounts.
According to the American Kennel Club, dogs need the following vitamins to stay healthy:
Remember that each dog will need a different amount based on their condition, allergies, and intolerances.
Fat is one of the major components of a dog’s diet. Contrary to stereotypes, fats aren’t always the enemy. There are the so-called healthy fats like fatty acids which gives your pooch a good coat and skin health.
Two of the most important fats that your dog should get from its diet are Omega-6 and Omega-3. Both are essential, but most dogs will need more Omega-3 especially if they have skin sensitivities.
The Omega-3 fatty acid can be found on fish like tuna, salmon, and oils. Some dog owners supplement fish oils to compensate with the lack of Omega-3 on their dog’s diet. As much as Omega-3 is crucial for a small dog’s health, only a few products actually provide the needed amount.
We, dog owners, tend to forget the value of hydration, both to our diet and our dogs’ wellness. Proper hydration is necessary, especially if you’re giving dry food to your pooch. Some owners would prefer to dilute the kibble to water for a slushy meal for their doggos. Remember that a dog in dry food needs more water than a canine eating moist meals.
About 80% of a pup’s body is made of water. That’s larger than humans at around 60% of H20. Your small pooch needs water all the time, regardless if it’s eating or not. Always place a dish of cool and clean water around the house in multiple spots.
Protein is both a friend and a foe of dog owners. A large chunk of your pet’s diet will be allotted to protein sources. It can be pork, chicken, venison, duck, and more. The protein in the best dry dog food for small dogs is necessary to support their muscles and continuous growth. Without it, your pooch will become lethargic and emaciated
However, be picky with the protein source of your dog’s food. A lot of canines tend to have allergic reactions to beef and other common protein sources. This is why many pet nutritionists recommend that you try exotic cuts like lamb, venison, duck, and the likes.
Always look for complete protein sources with the 23 essential amino acids. If your doggo seems to respond negatively to meat cuts, you can try eggs as an alternative.
Consider the digestibility of the protein before giving it to your pooch. Although you can provide your small dog a high-protein meal, it’s not guaranteed to be 100% digestible.
Eggs are 100% digestible while the popular lamb, beef, and chicken are a bit lower at 92%. Meanwhile, organs like liver, heart, and kidneys have a 90% digestibility. If you opt for fish, remember that this is only 75% digestible. Lastly, plant-based protein is only 54% to 75% digestible.
Last reminder: small and large dogs can’t leave on a vegan diet alone. Their bodies are designed to utilize meat-derived proteins to stay healthy.
The biggest portion of your dog’s meal will contain carbs. This is the main energy source of your pooch which he needs to sustain an active lifestyle. Usually, carbs can be found on grains but make sure that you only choose whole grains for your pet. Avoid corn, refined flour, and soy since these are notorious for inducing allergies.
The carb source can also have a small amount of plant protein which adds to the valuable nutrients in your doggo’s diet. High-quality dog food will have fruits and vegetables infused to its formula which is great for the vitamin supply of your pet.
Some grains could be added to the food even if it offers little nutritional value for the sake of providing fiber. As you know, this is an indispensable component of food that helps digestion and bowel movement. However, watch out for excessive fiber as it can make your pup’s stool too runny.
Considerations when purchasing dry dog food for small dogs
Now that you know the staples of the best dry dog food for puppies, it’s important to know some of these points. Read carefully as this is a matter of safety for your pooch.
Check the amount of protein. Remember, a high-protein diet isn’t always a good choice. Generally, pet nutritionists recommend that you feed your dog 1 gram of protein for every pound of its body weight. This is a safe level but it may not be optimal at all times. Always consult a vet to tweak your dog’s diet and to measure the right protein amount your little one needs.
Check the ingredients. Just because it contains an optimal amount of vitamins, minerals, and protein doesn’t mean the product is a catch. Always skim through the list of ingredients, especially the source of protein.
Ask about your vet’s recommendation. The best dry dog food for small dogs is one that’s directly recommended by your dog’s vet or pet nutritionist. This is guaranteed to be formulated based on your pooch’s needs, allergies, and sensitivities.
Small portions for small dogs. Little breeds have smaller spaces in their stomachs to hold food. Make sure that you feed them 3-4 times a day in small portions. Don’t force them to eat a large serving as it can lead to the deadly gastric torsion.
Kibble size. When it comes to dry food, make sure that the size of the kibble is easy to chew.
The best dry dog food for puppies & small breeds
Royal Canin Health Nutrition – Mini Mature
Formulated especially for mature small breeds, the Royal Canin Health Nutrition dry food helps doggos fight the complications of aging. It’s packed with antioxidants that provide energy and vitality for your active furry buddy.
This dog food also has excellent palatability which even finicky eaters can’t resist. It also has L-Carnitine that helps speed up fat to reduce the risk of obesity. And since small breeds tend to outlive large breeds, they need this kind of food to sustain their years. Once your pooch turned past 12 years old, switch him to Royal Canin’s Small 12+ diet. This brand also has a dog food product for small breed pups.
Aside from the nourishing formula, this Royal Canin dog food also has the proprietary kibble technology. Each piece is shaped for easy biting and in reducing tartar formation on your pet’s teeth.
The 13-pound bag is a bit pricey but it’s just a little sacrifice. Royal Canin is composed of pet nutritionists and animal experts so their products are guaranteed to have the best quality. Even vets recommend their dog food products. If you’re a bit skeptical, you can also ask your dog’s veterinarian to be sure.
Blue Buffalo Wilderness Grain-Free Dog Food
If you want something that your dogs can share, the Blue Buffalo Wilderness dog food is suitable for both small and large dogs. So if you have multiple pooches at home, this would be a great buy. This is a chicken meal combined with Blue Buffalo’s exclusive LifeSource. These are dark bits mixed into the kibble. It contains a concentration of minerals and vitamins.
This Blue Buffalo dog food has real meat deboned from fresh cuts with zero by-products. Overall, it promotes coat health, better joints, more energy, and a sustainable source of energy.
The kibble is infused with wholesome veggies and fruits as well as a balanced supply of Omega fatty acids. Blue Buffalo’s formula is targeted to boost the immune system of adult dogs but without the addition of allergy-inducing grains. It’s also free of artificial flavors and colors.
The good thing about this formula is it also supports bone and joint health of dogs. Just be careful in feeding this food to your pooch as it contains a high 34% crude protein.
When choosing the best dry dog food for small dogs, always consider the specific needs of your dog. It’s always advisable to consult a veterinarian and inquire for a possible food recommendation. This way, you can skip emergency vet visits and your doggo would stay happy.
Do you prefer homemade dog food? Here’s a recipe from Top Dog Tips: