What Is the Best Dog Food for Sensitive Stomachs?

October 19, 2021

What Causes Dogs to Have Sensitive Stomachs?

Before you begin looking for a better meal for your dog, you must first determine what is causing your dog's sensitive stomach. Some dogs, like some people, are allergic to specific dietary ingredients. Others may see a sensitive stomach as an indication of a more serious problem. Schedule an appointment with your veterinarian to get your dog inspected. While this may appear to be a large upfront investment, keep in mind that dog food is also pricey. You may actually save money in the long run by visiting your veterinarian, and while you're there, you may ask her advice on your dog's nutrition. Once major disorders such as stomach cancer have been ruled out, it is time to look at other probable reasons of sensitive stomachs in dogs. There are a wide range of food ingredients that some dogs find difficult to tolerate. Certain proteins are toxic to other dogs. Another possibility is that your dog's food is deficient in something, such as fiber, vitamins, and minerals, or includes an excessive amount of something, such as fat. It's possible that the issue isn't even with your dog's diet. If your dog has a history of getting into the trash or eating a lot of goodies and table scraps, it's possible that something else is causing his stomach distress.

How to Tell if Your Dog Is Sensitive to Food

In dogs, the term "sensitive stomach" usually refers to moderate digestive distress.

Symptoms of a sensitive stomach in dogs include:

Vomiting on occasion

Stools with a lot of slack


Your dog may exhibit one or more of these symptoms, but if any of them are severe, you should contact your veterinarian immediately. Vomiting and diarrhea are symptoms of many serious ailments, and even flatulence might indicate a disease or condition that necessitates veterinarian care.

Remove Extra Food Items

Not every dog is a walking waste disposal. Some dogs, like some humans, have sensitive stomachs that are easily irritated or agitated. This might be difficult for owners who are looking for a solution to make their pets more comfortable at mealtimes. Your dog's food could be one of the causes of his sensitive stomach. Finding the best food for dogs with sensitive stomachs can sometimes alleviate your dog's symptoms and get his GI tract back on track.

Finding out if your dog's food is the source of the problem is simple, but it may involve some willpower on your part. Begin by removing any extra food items from his diet. Table scraps, snacks, and anything else your dog might enjoy munching on throughout the day are all OK. Check to see if your dog is getting into the trash, the litter box, or any other forbidden treasure trove of things that make dogs sick. This will not only relieve his stomach, but it may also prevent him from a trip to the veterinary emergency hospital. If your dog's stomach is still unhappy after a few days without treats and scraps, and you're certain he's not raiding the garbage when you're gone, it's time to look into the food itself.

Ingredients in Dog Food that Cause Dog Stomach Discomfort

Every dog is unique in its own way. Some canines can digest everything that enters into their stomach, including full rolls of toilet paper. Others are irritated by even little changes in their diet. You should be aware of a few areas of dog nutrition that can help you discover the finest food for dogs with sensitive stomachs.

Causes of sensitive stomachs in dogs caused by food:

Source of protein

Source of fiber

A sufficient amount of fat is present, as are enough amounts of vitamins and minerals.

Protein additives of high quality

Certain forms of protein are just not efficiently digested by some dogs. If your dog is on a chicken-based diet, for example, try moving to a different protein source, such as lamb, beef, or fish, to see if it fixes the problem.


Dogs, like humans, require a little additional fiber in their meals from time to time. According to the Merck Veterinary Manual, beet pulp is an excellent source of fiber that "provides adequate fecal quality in dogs without impairing other nutrient digestibility." Inulin and psyllium are two other fiber sources recommended in commercial dog food. Consult your veterinarian about increasing fiber to your dog's diet.


Diets heavy in fat are more difficult to digest than diets high in protein or carbohydrates. Examine the ingredient list on your dog's current food to determine if fats and oils are listed among the first four ingredients. This is a sign that the food has too much fat for your dog's digestive system. Compare your current food to other brands to locate a lower-fat food. Looking at the ingredients list and the fat content in the nutritional information on the label is an easy way to do this.

Minerals and vitamins

The recipes of most commercial dog diets provide suitable levels of vitamins and minerals. However, if you are providing a speciality diet, such as a raw diet or a freshly prepared meal, your dog may be deficient in some nutrients. Consult your veterinarian to ensure that you are providing your dog with all of the nutrients he requires for optimal digestion, and then change your pet's food accordingly.

Ingredients of high quality

It is difficult to determine the quality of the ingredients in dog food. Labels are not permitted to provide any information about the quality or grade of an ingredient. Instead, owners are forced to make educated guesses based on price, published information, and the advice of their vets. A excellent technique to try to identify the quality is to look at any clinical studies that have been conducted on a certain brand of food. Choose a brand that outperforms the competition statistically, and don't be hesitant to approach the company personally. Because clinical studies take time to conduct and review, newer brands may not have as many as older brands. This is not to say they are not a suitable option for your dog, but it is a good idea to determine if the company has a Board Certified Veterinary Nutritionist on staff. This indicates that the company is aware of the nutritional worth of its product.

Where Can I Buy High-Quality Dog Food?

The Internet is rife with recommendations for the finest food for dogs with sensitive stomachs. Unfortunately, the majority of such advice is not supported by reliable evidence. This makes navigating forums, blogs, and web articles difficult. The website of the dog food company can also be deceptive - after all, they are attempting to sell a product. This is why consulting your veterinarian or a veterinary nutritionist is the ideal place to begin your search. If you haven't already discussed your dog's sensitive stomach with your veterinarian, now is the moment. Before you start experimenting with different foods on your own, you should rule out anything serious. Your veterinarian may be able to recommend a few brands of dog food that she prefers, as well as provide you with information about problematic components and nutritional facts to watch out for when you begin your search. Most pet owners conduct their own research as well. Look for publications and magazines authored by veterinarians and veterinary nutritionists who are Board Certified. You want the best for your dog, so seek advice from the best people — the specialists. Try to be wary when you look for the best food for dogs with sensitive stomachs. If a corporation promotes a magical diet that seems too good to be true, it most likely is (unless it is a scientifically tested prescription diet).

Commercial Dog Foods That Are Good for Sensitive Stomachs

Commercial dog food diets are the most practical and, in many cases, the best solution for sensitive stomach dogs. There are a number of formulae available to assist you in finding a food that does not upset your pet's stomach. Unfortunately, the sheer quantity of alternatives can be overwhelming.

“Complete and Equitable”

The first thing to look for is a food labeled "complete and balanced." This implies that the food has been specially prepared to give your dog with all of the nutrients that are known to be essential for dogs. Choosing a full and balanced diet helps to avoid sensitive stomachs caused by nutritional inadequacies and ensures that your pet receives the nutrition he requires for proper digestion.


The label is the next thing to look for. Analyze the protein and fiber sources, as well as the fat content, to determine which commercial diet is ideal for your pet. Check with your veterinarian about any pet food recalls and make sure your pet is eating the appropriate life stage version. It's possible that you won't find the best cuisine immediately away. It can take some time to find the best diet for your dog's delicate stomach. You may have to try several different foods before you find one that works for him. While it may be tempting to start him on the new food right away in order to see the improvements, it is critical to gradually transition your dog off of the old food and onto the new. If you don't, you risk irritating his sensitive stomach or having your dog refuse to eat the new food.

Introducing a New Food to Your Dog

In general, the best way to introduce a new food to your dog is to begin slowly. The first meal should be composed of 80-90 percent old food and 10-20 percent new food. Change this ratio gradually over a 10-day period. You can always contact your veterinarian for advice on the best approach to transition your dog to a new food.

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