Best Dog Food for Older Dogs – Weight gain, arthritis, and hip and elbow dysplasia are just a few of the joint changes that can occur as pets age. And lead to painful limping and difficulty moving. Number 1 Senior Pets. Association of American Veterinarians.
Little alterations, such as a compromised immune system or a decline in mental capacity, are possible. Some of these changes can be prevented or reduced by feeding your dog senior dog food.
Features such as protein quality are crucial when selecting a diet for senior pets, as they may have a more difficult time absorbing nutrients. 2 When they get older, some dogs gain weight and may need fewer calories than they did in their younger years. While others lose weight and shouldn’t reduce their calorie intake.
But not all dogs should be shifted to senior diets, says Best Friends Animal Society veterinarian Megan McCarthy, DVM. “If your dog is already on a special or prescription diet, or has a sensitive stomach, you may want to continue feeding the same ‘adult’ dog food instead of a senior dog food to prevent any issues by switching diets,” she advised The US Top Best.
We recommend Purina Pro Plan Bright Mind dry food for senior dogs and Blue Buffalo Homestyle Recipe Senior wet food for older canine companions. Both are made with chicken and include supplements for your joints, tummy, and head.
10 Best Dog Food for Older Dogs
Best Overall – Purina Pro Plan Bright Mind Adult 7+ Chicken & Rice Formula Dry Dog Food
Many veterinarians trust and recommend Purina since the company has been producing pet food for 90 years. The primary source of animal protein in Purina Pro Plan Bright Mind senior formula comes from chicken and poultry by-product meal.
The mixture is loaded with different vitamins and minerals that are beneficial for older dogs. Antioxidants help maintain a strong immune system, while probiotics promote healthy digestion. Glucosamine aids with mobility, omega-6 fatty acids are good for the skin and coat, and more.
Ingredients include fish oil, antioxidants, B vitamins, and arginine to support canine brain function and mental sharpness in senior years. 3 The kibble comes in adult, big, and small breed varieties. While the canned food is suitable for all sizes of dogs.
At the time of publication, a five-pound bag cost $26.19
Primary Ingredients: Chicken, poultry byproduct meal, rice; Estimated Calories: 423 kcal/cup; Minimum Crude Protein: 29%; Minimum Crude Fat: 14%; Flavors: Chicken & Rice, Turkey & Brown Rice
Best Wet Overall – Blue Buffalo Homestyle Recipe Beef Dinner with Garden Vegetables Canned Dog Food
Older dogs may have a decreased appetite and difficulty chewing dry food, so canned food is a good option. Chicken, chicken broth, and chicken liver make up the first three components in this well-liked Blue Buffalo dish. In addition to the aforementioned, it also includes flaxseed, fish oil, blueberries, carrots, sweet potatoes, oatmeal, and brown rice. There’s no soy, corn, or wheat, and there are no added flavors or preservatives.
This senior meal, like its dry food equivalent, has added omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids to support skin and coat health, antioxidants to strengthen the immune system, and glucosamine and chondroitin to ease joint discomfort. It may be given on its own, combined with dry kibble to appease finicky eaters, or saved for special occasions.
Currently, a case of 12 cans costs $63.67
Primary Ingredients: Chicken, chicken broth, and chicken liver; Flavors: Chicken supper with garden veggies; Estimated Calories: 396 calories per cup; Minimum Crude Protein: 7.5 percent; Minimum Crude Fat: 4.5 percent
Best Budget – Iams Proactive Health Healthy Aging Mature & Senior Formula with Real Chicken Dry Dog Food
This senior meal is less expensive than others, but it is still manufactured with chicken from a farm. Fiber and prebiotics aid digestion, antioxidants strengthen the immune system, and glucosamine and chondroitin support healthy joints. Other supplements aid in fat loss and assist the metabolism to stay powered up.
The meal comes in recipes tailored to both small and large breeds, and it features no fillers artificial flavors, or preservatives. Carrots, beet pulp, and whole grains round out the list of components.
At the time of publication, 7 pounds cost $17.99
Flavors: Chicken; Primary Ingredients: Chicken meal, chicken by-product meal, and ground whole grain sorghum; Estimated Calories: 349 calories per cup; Minimum Crude Protein: has a minimum of 24 percent; Minimum Crude Fat: 10.5 percent crude fat
Best Premium – Farmina N&D Ancestral Grain Chicken & Pomegranate Recipe Mini Puppy Dry Dog Food
The FDA is looking into a possible link between grain-free dog diets and heart disease. Despite the fact that many high-quality dog foods are grain-free. Instead, Farmina provides a senior formula with “ancient grains,” a generic term for precious grains. And wheat species that haven’t been selectively bred and thus remain largely unchanged across centuries of use, like einkorn, farro, and spelt. Whole oats and spelt are used in the N&D Ancestral Grain recipe. Both are more difficult to break down than the grains often used in cooking. So they release their carbohydrate energy more gradually and make you feel fuller for longer.
Eggs, poultry, and dried beets make up the bulk of the protein. The aroma alone might make you want to take a mouthful. Dry fruits and vegetables including carrots, apples, blueberries, and spinach are also included. Made in Italy, this high-protein meal features joint-friendly glucosamine and chondroitin as well as skin- and coat-nourishing omega fatty acids.
At the time of publication, 5.5 pounds cost $31.04
Flavors: Chicken, oats, spelt, and pomegranate; Primary Ingredients: boneless chicken and dried chicken; Estimated Calories: 371 calories; Minimum Crude Protein: 27 percent; Minimum Crude Fat: 15 percent
Best Treats for Arthritis – Wellness Complete Health Senior Deboned Chicken & Barley Recipe Dry Dog Food
Because aging dogs are sensitive to developing arthritis and joint problems, glucosamine and chondroitin are common additions to senior dog meals. Both supplements, glucosamine and chondroitin, are included in this diet in rather high concentrations. With at least 800 milligrams of glucosamine and 700 milligrams of chondroitin per kilogram of food, respectively.4
Ingredients like barley, brown rice, peas, and oats complement the deboned chicken as the mainstay of this recipe. Essential nutrients such as omega fatty acids, calcium, and dietary fiber are included. The food is produced in the USA and has no fillers, meat byproducts, or chemical preservatives.5
Currently, a purchase of 5 pounds will set you back $16.49
Flavors: Chicken and barley; Primary Ingredients: deboned chicken, chicken meal, oatmeal; Estimated Calories: 416 kcal/cup ME (metabolizable energy); Minimum Crude Protein: 22%; Minimum Crude Fat: 10%
Best for Large Dogs – Hill’s Science Diet Adult 6+ Large Breed Chicken Meal, Barley & Rice Dry Dog Food
Larger dogs have specific dietary requirements, particularly as they age to preserve bone and joint health. This meal is designed for adult dogs of large and huge breeds. Whose optimal weight is 55 to 110 pounds, and who are at least six years old. Omega-6 fatty acids benefit the skin and coat, minerals support the heart and kidneys. While glucosamine and chondroitin help with movement. And comes under the best dog food for older dogs.
Hill’s provides a variety of formulations for big breeds. With the primary component being either chicken, chicken meal, or lamb meal. There are no added synthetic colors, flavors, or preservatives.
Currently, a shipment of 15 pounds costs $47.04
Primary Ingredients: Chicken meal, cracked pearl barley, and brown rice; Flavors: chicken and brown rice; Estimated Calories: 353 calories; Minimum Crude Protein: 15.5 percent; Minimum Crude Fat: 10.5 percent
Best for Small Dogs – Royal Canin Size Health Nutrition Small Puppy Dry Dog Food
Do you have a little friend? Royal Canin provides a wide variety of recipes for senior dogs of varying sizes and ages. Both x-small and tiny dogs are accepted, with additional classification for dogs aged 8 to 12 years. Dogs weighing 8 pounds or less should choose the x-small. While those ranging from 9 to 22 pounds should go for the small.
Kibble size is modest, making this meal suitable for puppies and kittens. The antioxidants and amino acid L-carnitine help maintain a healthy metabolism, while the fiber aids with digestion. Corn is the primary carbohydrate while chicken byproduct meal is the main protein source.
At the time of publication, a 2.5-pound bag cost $23.99
Flavors: Chicken; Primary Ingredients: Brewers Rice, Chicken Fat, Chicken Byproduct Meal; Estimated Calories: 362 Calories; Minimum Crude Protein: 22%; Minimum Crude Fat:16%
Best for Weight Management – Nutro Natural Choice Senior Chicken & Brown Rice Recipe Dry Dog Food
Because older dogs are often less active than younger dogs, several senior dog diets are lower in calories. This recipe has just 319 calories per serving, which is around 100 fewer than numerous other alternatives. Additionally, it provides fiber to aid digestion and antioxidants to strengthen the immune system, much like the others. Depending on the dish, either chicken or lamb will serve as the main attraction. Comes under the best dog food for older dogs.
Nothing artificial or genetically modified goes into the meal. There are also small-breed senior and large-breed senior varieties for dogs of different sizes as they age.
At the time of publication, a package of 13 pounds cost $37.98
Flavors: Chicken and lamb; Primary Ingredients: whole grain barley, chicken meal, and chicken; Estimated Calories: 319 calories per cup; Minimum Crude Protein: 24 percent; Minimum Crude Fat: 12 percent
Best Prescription Food for Dog – Hill’s Prescription Diet g/d Aging Care Chicken Flavor Dry Senior Dog Food
Prescription meals, sometimes known as therapeutic diets, are sold exclusively with a veterinarian’s prescription. And are designed to address a certain medical condition or life stage. The specific needs of older dogs are met by the Hills Diet for aging care. That means giving your dog a diet with low levels of salt, phosphorus, and protein to keep his heart and kidneys healthy. It’s specially developed to support urinary tract wellness. Dogs that have digestive issues due to consuming too much fat may consider this option.
The only taste available is chicken, and one of the primary components is a meal made from chicken by-products. The cost of veterinary diets is often substantially higher than that of commercially available feeds.
At the time of publication, an 8.5-pound bag cost $51.99
Flavors: Chicken; Primary Ingredients: brewer’s rice, chicken byproduct meal, and whole-grain wheat; Estimated Calories: 351 calories per cup; Minimum Crude Protein: 18%; Minimum Crude Fat: 11%
Best Supplements – Zesty Paws Senior Advanced 11-in-1 Bites Chicken Flavored Soft Chews Multivitamin for Senior Dogs
Tiny heart-shaped soft chews, these vitamins are loaded with nutrients that support healthy aging. Nearly a dozen bodily systems are cared for, including the hips and joints, skin, stomach, immunity, heart, brain, liver, eyes, urine, and kidneys. They include glucosamine and chondroitin to alleviate joint pain, fish oil, and vitamin E to promote radiant skin, cranberry extract, psyllium husk, and vitamins A and C to support digestive health, the immune system, and urinary tract health.
There are no synthetic colors, flavors, or preservatives in these chews. One chew for dogs under 25 pounds, three chews for dogs over 75 pounds, and two for dogs in the middle. The chews are delicious and may be given both as a reward and as part of a regular meal.
At the time of publication, a pack of 90 chews costs $39.96
Flavors: Chicken; Primary Ingredients: psyllium husk, glucosamine, and a special multipurpose mix