The best dog food for sensitive stomach issues will help your dogs digest their food normally without discomfort. Many dogs have problems digesting their food properly. Symptoms of sensitive stomachs in dogs can include: gas, vomiting, or diarrhea.
If your dog is experiencing digestive issues like these, finding the best dog food for sensitive stomachs is especially important. But it is also important to seek help from a vet to determine the cause of your dog’s sensitive stomach.
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The 5 Best Dog Foods For Sensitive Stomach
In a rush? Here are some of the top choices when it comes to the best dog food for sensitive stomach issues.
|BEST DOG FOOD FOR |
|Natural Balance Limited Ingredient Dry Dog Food||Limited Ingredient, |
Dry Dog Food
|Hill's Science Diet Sensitive Stomach & Skin Dog Food||Sensitive Stomach, |
Dry Dog Food
|Nature's Instinct Limited Ingredient Dog Food||Limited Ingredient, |
Grain & Gluten Free,
Wet Canned Dog Food
|Natural Balance Limited Ingredient Diets Dry Dog Food||Limited Ingredient, |
Dry Dog Food
|IAMS Sensitive Naturals Dry Dog Food||Sensitive Stomach, |
Dry Dog Food
You can find out more about these in the detailed reviews below, along with plenty of other options for what could potentially be the best dog food for sensitive stomach conditions that your dog is suffering from.
Symptoms of Sensitive Stomachs in Dogs
What exactly is sensitive stomach? If your vet finds no underlying medical condition causing your dog’s digestive upset, then there are other possible sources.
Your dog may just have difficulty handling a varied diet.
Also, some dogs have trouble with ingredients that make their digestive systems work harder than normal. Flatulence is a common sign of a sensitive stomach.
Be sure to talk to your vet if your dog is experiencing chronic vomiting or diarrhea. Your dog’s symptoms could indicate a more serious problem than food sensitivity.
Once your vet rules out more serious conditions, changing your dog’s diet can be the best way to treat sensitive stomach.
If your sensitive stomach dog is just not eating at all, take a look at this article for more help.
What is the best dog food for sensitive stomach?
When shopping for the best dog food for sensitive stomach and diarrhea, you will see words like “highly digestible,” “high quality diet,” and “low residue.”
You’ll also see references to “hydrolyzed protein diets” and “single source novel protein diets.”What does all this mean?
Veterinary nutritionists recommend a low-fat diet with good quality animal protein as the main ingredient. Some proteins are better than others. For example, red meat can be a common cause of gas.
“Hydrolyzed” means that the protein has been broken down into small segments that are easier to digest.
A “single source novel protein” diet means that the food’s primary ingredient is a meat that your dog has never eaten before, such as venison, duck, or rabbit.
Best Dry Dog Food for Dogs with Sensitive Stomachs
There are many options for dog owners who are looking for the best dry dog food for sensitive stomach.
If your dog’s food of choice is kibble, here are a few of the best options.
1. Hill’s Science Diet Sensitive Stomach & Skin Dog Food
Looking for the best dog food for sensitive stomach and skin? This Hill’s Science Diet sensitive stomach dog food* is formulated to be easily digestible.
It also contains ingredients to nourish your dog’s sensitive skin.
2. IAMS Sensitive Naturals Adult Dry Dog Food
Iams Sensitive Natural dry dog food* is another very popular choice.
While a common ingredient in cat food, fish is often a novel protein for dogs, which can be helpful for sensitive stomachs.
It also contains rice, an ingredient recommended by vets for dogs that are prone to diarrhea.
3. Natural Balance Limited Ingredient Diets Dry Dog Food
This popular Natural Balance Limited Ingredient dry food* is made with a single source of quality protein.
It also contains sweet potato, which is a healthy grain-free carbohydrate. Other carbs that ferment in the stomach (legumes, barley, oats) can cause excess gas.
Wet Dog Food for Dogs with Sensitive Stomachs
Because a quality wet food diet is preferred by many dog owners, here are a few choices for the best wet dog food for sensitive stomach.
1. Dave’s Restricted Bland Diet, Chicken & Rice for Dogs
Dave’s Restricted Bland Diet* could be the best dog food for sensitive stomach issues in dogs who can’t cope with too many ingredients.
Since bland, low fat food with rice is recommended for dogs prone to diarrhea, this is an excellent choice if your dog has issues with gas and loose stools.
2. CANIDAE Grain Free PURE Wet Dog Food
Lamb is the main meat in Canidae Grain Free Pure dog food*.
It’s a popular choice if you’re looking for a novel protein to try.
In addition to lamb, other easy to digest varieties like chicken, duck, turkey, and fish are also available.
3. BLUE Basics Limited Ingredient Diet Grain-Free Wet Dog Food
This line of Blue Basics wet food* for dogs with food sensitivities has easily digestible potato combined with a quality animal protein.
Choices include lamb, duck, salmon, and turkey.
It is limited ingredient and also completely grain free.
Best Canned Dog Food for Dogs with Sensitive Stomachs
What about canned dog food for sensitive stomachs?
Wet food can be a great source of high quality protein as well as added moisture.
Here are a few tried and true favorites.
1. Wellness Simple Natural Wet Canned Limited Ingredient Dog Food
The popular Wellness brand* makes a sensitive stomach formula.
It contains turkey as the single source protein, combined with easy to digest potato.
2. Purina Pro Plan Focus Sensitive Stomach Wet Dog Food
This Purina sensitive stomach dog food* is designed to be gentle on your dog’s digestive system.
Salmon and rice are the main, easy to digest ingredients.
3. Instinct Limited Ingredient Diet Canned Food
The Instinct Limited Ingredient* single novel protein source in this sensitive stomach formula is rabbit.
It contains no chicken, beef, or fish, and no grain, gluten, eggs, dairy, or even potato.
Grain-Free Dog Food for Dogs with Sensitive Stomachs
Grain free dog foods contain no grain ingredients, such as corn, rice, and wheat. Instead, they focus on animal-based protein.
Many people assume grain-free equals low carb, but this isn’t always true! So make sure to read ingredients carefully before choosing the best grain-free dog food for sensitive stomachs.
1. Diamond Naturals Real Meat Grain-Free Recipe
A great grain free option is the Diamonds Naturals Skin and Coat Real Meat* recipe.
This is a dry dog food option that contains high quality protein as its main ingredient. It is nutrient-rich and contains probiotics for increased gastrointestinal health.
Not only does this food option contain no corn, wheat or filler, there are also no artificial flavors, colors, or added preservatives.
2. Wag Amazon Brand Grain Free Dry Dog Food
The Wag Amazon grain-free choice* is another option that is praised for helping dogs with sensitive stomachs. It comes in a choice of 4 different flavors and contains no grain, corn, wheat, artificial colors, flavors, or chemical preservatives.
It is also available in a trial sized bag, to help you ease your dog onto this new food.
3. WholeHearted Grain Free All Life Stages Dry Dog Food
The WholeHearted Grain Free All Life Stages* choice is another that can help sensitive stomachs.
It comes in 5 main flavors – beef, chicken, duck, lamb, and salmon. So if your dog’s sensitive stomach is caused by an allergy to one of these, you have plenty of other choices.
It has no grains of any kind, but includes canine probiotics for great digestive health.
Raw or Homemade Dog Food for Dogs with Sensitive Stomachs
Some dogs with sensitive stomachs can benefit from bland meals. These are often easiest prepared at home.
Some ingredients that might be a part of this diet include cooked chicken and unseasoned rice.
However, you should consult your vet before trying a homemade diet. This is because it can be really hard to make sure you’re including all of the nutrients your dog needs.
Puppy Food for Dogs with Sensitive Stomach
Does your new puppy have digestive issues? We found the best puppy food for sensitive stomach. Take a look at these brands.
1. Royal Canin Veterinary Diet Gastrointestinal Puppy Dry Food
The vet recommended Royal Canin brand* makes a wide variety of gastrointestinal pet food.
This puppy formula gets high marks from owners of puppies with sensitive stomachs.
2. Natural Balance Limited Ingredient Puppy Food
The Natural Balance puppy formula* contains similar ingredients to the sensitive stomach options for adult dogs.
It’s a limited ingredient potato and duck formula for easy digestion.
3. NUTRO Puppy Wet Dog Food
Prefer canned food for your puppy? NUTRO* makes a wet puppy formula with easy to digest lamb and rice, as well as chicken and turkey options.
Best Dog Food for Senior Dogs with Sensitive Stomachs
Digestive problems can be common in older pets.
If your senior dog is suffering from gas or other GI issues, here’s the best senior dog food for sensitive stomach.
IAMS Proactive Health Wet Senior Dog Food
The popular IAMS brand* makes a senior pate formula with easy to digest chicken and rice for dogs 7 years of age and older.
It’s designed to complement their aging bodies as well as deal with food intolerances.
2. Holistic Select Natural Grain Free Dry Dog Food
This Holistic Select Natural dry food* is designed to support a senior dog’s digestive health.
It is also totally free from grain, and they have an option for adult dogs* as well as seniors.
3. Hill’s Science Diet Adult 7+ Entrees Wet Dog Food
An easy to digest Hill’s Science Diet wet food for dogs 7 years of age and older*, this food contains high quality protein combined with barley.
Why use sensitive stomach dog food?
Good dog food for sensitive stomach is designed to be easily digestible for your dog.
If your dog has no underlying health problems, then finding the right food may be all you need to do to solve your dog’s digestive issues.
It’s also a good idea to limit treats and table scraps if your dog has a sensitive stomach.
Sensitive stomach diets and other specialty dog foods can cost more than regular dog food. This is because they are generally made with good quality ingredients that cost more than cheap fillers.
You also might have trouble finding them at your local grocery store, and may need to seek them out at pet stores or online.
Some diets made to treat specific gastrointestinal illnesses are only available through your vet with a prescription.
What is the Best Dog Food for Dogs with Sensitive Stomach?
With all the different options for sensitive stomach dog food, it’s easy to find the best dog food for sensitive stomach issues for your particular dog.
Be sure to always look for a high-quality diet with limited ingredients.
Pick one with an easy to digest protein. A novel protein source your dog has never tried before can be beneficial.
Remember to limit treats, especially high fat table scraps, and see your vet if your dog’s GI symptoms don’t improve with a change in diet.
What food has worked for your dog? Be sure to share your best dog foods for sensitive stomachs below!
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Affiliate link disclosure: Links in this article marked with an * are affiliate links, and we may receive a small commission if you purchase these products. However, we selected them for inclusion independently, and all of the views expressed in this article are our own.
References and Further Reading
- “6 Things that Give Your Pet Gas.” Animal Hospital of West Chester, 2016.
- Brown, S. “Canine Pancreatitis.” TexVetPets, 2016.
- Ward, E. “Gastritis in Dogs.” VCA Hospitals, 2008.
- “Inflammatory Bowel Disease.” Mar Vista Animal Medical Center, 2017.
- “Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS).” Mar Vista Animal Medical Center, 2016.
- Sanderson, S.L. “Nutrition in Disease Management in Small Animals.” Merck Veterinary Manual, 2016.