The best senior dog food is NUTRO Ultra Senior Pate Wet Dog Food.
As dogs grow older, they become less active and need lesser energy. With a slower metabolism, older dogs are more likely to become overweight or obese.
Thus, you would have to change their diet too. Most dogs enter their senior years when they are between 7 to 10 years old.
Senior dog foods are specially formulated with:
- Lower calories – For a slowing metabolism
- Higher fiber – Improves gastrointestinal health
- Lesser fat – To aid with obesity
Here’s a comprehensive list of the best senior dog foods you can get for your aging pooch.
#1 NUTRO Ultra Senior Pate Wet Dog Food
Our top pick is the senior dog food from NUTRO – the best way to ensure an aging dog remains healthy even as it gets older. This senior dog food for older dogs features an excellent blend of only the highest quality of ingredients with chicken, salmon, and lamb as its main ingredients.
This formulation is quite different from all the other canned dog food specifically made for senior dogs as most only contain a single kind of meat. With the NUTRO Senior Plate Wet Dog Food, different meat sources are used so the dog enjoys a well-rounded diet, as well as receives all the protein its body needs to remain strong.
We’ve tried giving our older dogs different senior dog food from different brands, but even our pickiest eaters enjoyed NUTRO’s formula. If your dog is a picky eater and you are not sure what to get it, then we suggest you stick with this one.
Aside from being incredibly easy to feed to a picky eater, the dog food also has several aspects that work well together in boosting the health of a dog, including a surprisingly high concentration of glucosamine, chondroitin, and essential fatty acids to support your dog’s joint health and give its skin and coat a better look.
The NUTRO Ultra Wet Senior Dog Food is the best choice for senior dogs as it allows a dog to enjoy its food even when it’s grown to be picky. It also ensures a dog is eating healthy and consuming nothing but ingredients packed with nutrients.
- The meaty flavor of this senior wet dog food product entices and encourages pooches that are picky eaters to eat.
- This NUTRO Ultra dog food is grain-free and manufactured with non-GMO ingredients, thereby making it suitable for consumption by pooches with allergies and food sensitivities.
- This wet dog food product contains antioxidant-rich superfood ingredients, such as blueberries, apples, and chia seeds, that provide support for the canine immune system.
- Dog parents can choose to either serve this wet dog food directly to their pooches or use it as a dry food topper for their senior pooches.
- Real chicken, which is used as the main protein source in this wet dog food, provides the energy needed for senior dogs to go about their daily activities without issues.
- Several customers claim to have received NUTRO cans containing spoiled and moldy dog food that are unhealthy for canine consumption.
- Some customers reportedly find it difficult to open up NUTRO wet dog food cans and feed their pooches.
#2 Hill’s Science Diet Dry Dog Food
For the budget conscious dog parent, an affordable choice of senior dog food is the chicken meal, barley and brown rice Senior Dog Food from Hill’s Science. It’s actually composed of a special antioxidant blend to help your aging pooch’s immune system.
What we were surprised about with this senior dog food is that it is supplemented with omega-6 and vitamin E in order to give a senior dog a healthier skin. However, we felt that this senior dog food could have came added with glucosamine and chondroitin, which would have been beneficial for aging joints.
You can always add some glucosamine dog supplements to go with their meals.
For under $30 for a 15.5-pound bag of Hill’s Science senior dry dog food, your senior dog gets real chicken as its source of protein, as well as whole grains for aiding digestion.
- Hill’s Science dry dog food is supplemented with omega-3 fatty acids to ensure that senior dogs don’t lose their coat luster and shine.
- The antioxidant blend of vitamins C and E included in this dry dog diet has been scientifically proven to be effective at providing support for a pooch’s immune system.
- The high-quality fiber contained in this dry dog food ensures that pooches will have no issues digesting kibble and, in the long run, strengthens the canine digestive system.
- Protein contained in this Hill’s Science diet provides nutrients that assist senior dogs in maintaining lean muscle mass and staying in shape.
- The absence of artificial colors, flavors, and preservatives, in this Hill’s Science diet ensures that the kibble is safe and non-toxic for senior pooches to consume.
- This dry dog food has a smell that seems to deter some dogs when it is time to eat.
- The kibbles of Hill’s Science dry dog food are too hard and dense for small-toothed pooches to comfortably chew.
#3 ORIJEN Senior Dry Dog Food
ORIJEN Senior dry dog food uses fresh and animal ingredients to improve your dog’s general wellness with a grain-free formula. The recipe is low in carbohydrates and fats to prevent weight gain and high in animal protein to support lean muscle mass.
It features 85% animal protein to ensure your pooch gets all the essential amino acids and fatty acids for healthy skin, coat, and brain development. In addition, the fatty acids ensure that the cognitive health of your pooch does not rapidly decline even as they grow old.
ORIJEN Senior food is deemed to be high-quality since it ensures its food meets the AAFCO nutritional level standards. Being available only in chicken flavor, it is perfect for dogs with sensitive stomachs or food allergies because it doesn’t contain common allergens like wheat, soy, or corn.
If you are looking for a grain-free formula for your senior dog’s aging joint and muscles, this is it. ORIJEN Senior dry dog food provides all the necessary nutritional needs for an aging pooch.
- ORIJEN dry dog food is formulated with a blend of free-run chicken, and turkey, as well as wild-caught fish. to provide senior dogs with the nutrition needed to maintain lean muscle mass and healthier body weight.
- The kibbles of ORIJEN’s dry dog food feature freeze-dried coating to preserve flavor and ensure that pooches show interest in eating.
- High levels of essential fatty acids contained in this dry dog food product assist senior dogs with the maintenance of shiny and polished coats.
- In addition to maintaining coat quality, the fatty acids contained in this dry dog food ensure that the cognitive abilities of senior dogs don’t decline rapidly as the pooches age.
- ORIJEN’s senior dry dog food is produced in facilities located in the United States to ensure compliance with safe manufacturing practices.
- There are issues with this product’s quality consistency, as some customers have reportedly received food bags containing either slightly moist or extremely hard kibble on different occasions.
- Several customers claim that this dry dog food caused their pooches to develop symptoms, such as runny eyes, associated with allergic reactions.
#4 Hill’s Science Diet Senior 7+ Dry Dog Food
This Hill’s Science Diet offer comes with an amazing senior formula for adult dogs aged 7+. It is the perfect choice for your kibble-loving canine. If your dog prefers the normal size kibble, simply get the regular-sized version.
In terms of ingredients, it’s worth noting that this senior dog food includes an antioxidant blend with vitamin C for a stronger immune system and to promote a healthy weight. L-Carnitine is also added to help restore the energy levels of the dog, which is crucial for keeping it active.
As it is included in our list of the best dog food for older dogs, you can expect it to contain no trace of artificial colors, preservatives, or flavors. It is perfectly safe for an aging pet’s gut as well as dogs with allergies.
Being one of the best dog foods to give to senior dogs, it gets our recommendation. The formula has been proven and tested by thousands of pet parents to help give older dogs energy despite their old age.
Being one of the best dog foods to give to senior dogs, it gets our recommendation. The formula has been proven and tested by thousands of pet parents to help give older dogs energy despite their old age.
- The omega-6 fatty acids and vitamins contained in this Hill’s Science 7+ diet help to keep a senior dog’s coat shiny.
- The high-quality ingredient list of this Hill’s Science diet is devoid of artificial preservatives, coloring, flavors, and any other ingredients that may be detrimental to the well-being of a dog.
- The blend of antioxidants and vitamins contained in this senior dry dog food provides the much-needed support for the immune system of an adult pooch.
- Hill’s Science senior dry dog food is manufactured in accredited facilities located in the United States, with the ingredients used for production gotten from reputable sources around the world.
- This specially prepared adult dog food has a wholesome ingredient list that provides nutrients that help restore and maintain the vitality of senior dogs.
- Hill’s Science senior dog food is averagely more expensive than other food products available on the market.
- Several dogs have reportedly developed diarrhea after consuming this Hill’s Science recipe.
#5 IAMS Proactive Health Mature Senior Dry Dog Food
What we love the most about this dog food for senior dogs, IAMS Proactive Health Mature Senior Dry Dog Food, is that it is very easy to feed to a senior dog. Even picky eaters enjoy the formula, making it the selling point of this particular senior dog food from the manufacturer.
Furthermore, each kibble contains vitamins, minerals, and fatty acids that are naturally sourced, which resulted in less scratching in our senior dogs.
From what we have observed, this specific brand is effective in helping older dogs that are experiencing skin and coat problems. It is also competitively priced, giving pet parents one more reason to opt for this brand.
If you want to boost the appearance of your furry friend’s skin and coat, start feeding the IAMS Proactive Health Adult Dry Dog Food to it. Being a product of a reputable dog food company for 50 years and satisfying hundreds of thousands of pet parents and dogs alike, there is no reason not to trust its formulation.
- IAMS Proactive dry dog food contains a blend of fibers and prebiotics, both of which work together to strengthen and support the digestive system of senior dogs.
- This dry dog food product contains natural sources of DHA, a nutrient that is known to promote mental and visual sharpness in dogs.
- The absence of artificial preservatives, flavors, and filler ingredients with little or no nutritional benefits in this product’s recipe ensures that senior dogs gain complete and balanced nutrition from consuming this dry dog food.
- IAMS dog food contains a significant amount of antioxidants to ensure that the immune system of senior pooches continues to work optimally.
- This canine food product uses farm-raised chicken as its first and major ingredient, thereby providing the nutrition needed for senior dogs to continue to function healthily.
- There are concerns about the nutritional benefits of the use of chicken by-product meals as the primary ingredient in IAMS’ senior dry dog food product.
- Some senior dogs have reportedly developed gas and gotten diarrhea from the consumption of this dry diet.
#6 VICTOR Super Premium Dog Food
VICTOR Super Premium dog food is formulated with premium ingredients such as chicken, pork meals, and beef, all of which are healthy protein sources. The recipe also contains selenium yeast that boosts the immune system, metabolic function, and cellular regeneration.
It contains gluten-free grains such as whole-grain millet and grain sorghum that provide carbohydrates, making it ideal for dogs with allergies. Also, it does not contain meat by-products and thus assures dog owners they know what they are feeding their pooch.
The Victor Super dog food is beneficial for dogs with dry skin thanks to the omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids to maintain your pooch’s coat and shiny skin. It contains 79% protein from protein-dense ingredients such as chicken, pork, and beef.
In addition, the ingredients make a rich and savory flavor that your pooch, and even those with fussy tastebuds, will surely enjoy.
VICTOR Super Premium dog food should be your go-to choice if your want a healthy diet for active working, pregnant, or nursing dogs. Its incredible formula will provide your pooch with sustained energy while supplying endurance and stamina.
- VICTOR’s premium dog food is specifically formulated to help less active senior dogs maintain ideal body weight.
- This gluten-free dog food recipe is packed with ingredients like L-carnitine, and it is effective at converting fat to energy to aid lean muscle development in senior dogs.
- VICTOR Super Premium dog food contains quality sources of chondroitin and glucosamine that provide support for joint health in senior pooches.
- VICTOR premium dog food is manufactured in licensed facilities located in Texas, United States, with ingredients sourced from high-quality local ranches and farms.
- This dog food product contains selenium yeast, which is effective at promoting cell regeneration, providing support for canine metabolic functions, and ensuring an overall strong immune response in senior dogs.
- This dog food product contains a high percentage of protein gotten from animal by-product meals, rather than real meat ingredients.
- Some customers claim to have received dog food packages that contained moldy chunks of kibble that weren’t fit for canine consumption.
#7 Blue Buffalo Wilderness High Protein Natural Senior Dog Food
The more active adult dogs will love this grain-free, high protein recipe from Blue Buffalo Wilderness. Huskies and pit bulls will benefit the most with the Wilderness Dry Dog Food.
Its main protein source is chicken, so you can expect your canine to devour its meal in a second. If you have a pet that enjoys a fishy flavor more, you can opt for salmon instead of chicken.
As it is grain-free, we suggest you stick to this one if your pet is allergic to grains. Take note that the omega-3 content of this dog food for older dogs is high (at 1 percent), which means it is specifically made for senior dogs with a longer, thicker coat.
Omega-3 is known to have anti-inflammatory properties. If your dog has itchy, sore skin, the Blue Buffalo Wilderness Dry Dog Food will soothe the itching.
Even if the Blue Buffalo Wilderness Dry Dog Food is not the cheapest senior dog food in the market, it has managed to garner customers up to this day because of its special formulation. As it is grain free and rich in protein, it is easier for a senior dog’s stomach to digest. It promotes a healthy coat as well.
- This Blue Buffalo diet, which is manufactured with real chicken as the first and major ingredient, is a protein-rich recipe that is specifically formulated to keep senior dogs in shape.
- Blue Buffalo’s high protein diet contains a precise blend of antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals that provide support for the immune system of senior pooches.
- The omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids contained in this natural diet help maintain the appearance of a pooch’s skin and coat, and they also release chondroitin and glucosamine that both ensure that a senior dog’s joints don’t give way and collapse.
- The grain-free formation of this natural senior dog food, which is also devoid of soy, wheat, meat by-products, and artificial flavors, makes it ideal for consumption by pooches with food sensitivities.
- The balanced protein and carbohydrate formulation of this Blue Buffalo recipe releases the energy needed to keep senior dogs active.
- Several dogs have reportedly developed allergic reactions to some of the ingredients contained in this Blue Buffalo recipe.
- The grain-free formulation of this Blue Buffalo senior dog food has been linked to the development of heart-related conditions in dogs.
#8 CANIDAE PURE Senior Dry Dog Food
One of the best choices for an aging pooch is CANIDAE’s Pure Grain-Free Dry Dog Food. It appeals to dog parents that are looking for food that’s free from grains and high in meat protein. All the ingredients added to this dog food are good in quality, which is important as older dogs have a more sensitive stomachs.
Furthermore, CANIDAE’s Pure Dog Food helps dogs approach old age with youthful energy. It’s free of antibiotics, gluten, hormones, soy, or corn, so it is also safe for a canine with a food allergy.
It’s worth mentioning that its formula includes sweet potatoes, which are good sources of complex carbohydrates.
A product of a holistic dog food brand, CANIDAE Pure Grain-Free Dry Dog Food offers your senior dogs a balanced diet. Real chicken is its number one ingredient. As for the other ingredients, they’re all simple to assist an aging dog’s digestion issues.
- The limited ingredient list of CANIDAE’S PURE dog food recipe, which contains just 9 real food ingredients, makes it ideal for consumption by pooches with sensitive stomachs.
- This dog food product is fortified with CANIDAE’s HealthPLUS probiotics blend to provide support for the canine digestive system.
- The nutritious blend of vitamins and minerals contained in this senior dry dog food supports the formation of strong joints and the maintenance of healthy skin and coats on senior dogs.
- CANIDAE’S senior dog food is produced in the brand’s licensed facility located in Texas, with the recipe formulated to meet and exceed AAFCO standards.
- This formula contains sweet potatoes, a good source of complex carbohydrates that provide the energy needed to keep aging dogs active.
- This dog food isn’t made for picky eaters, as some pooches were put off by the flavor of the kibbles and, as a result, refused to eat.
- Certain dog owners have reported that their dogs experienced bouts of diarrhea after consuming this product, casting doubt over its suitability for all senior dog breeds.
#9 Nulo Senior Dog Food
If what you want is dog food that is capable of preventing medical issues as a dog grows older, then Nulo Senior Dog Food is exactly what you’re looking for.
Because our older dogs rely entirely on us to give them proper nutrition, their food must provide them with a consistent protein intake and a healthy diet not just for a strong immune system but also for organ and joint function.
The main reason why we think the Nulo Senior Dog Food is one of the best around is because it includes pea fiber, salmon oil, dried chicory root, and menhaden fish meal among others.
The Nulo Senior Dry Dog Food comes complete with vitamins E, D3, B12, A, B6, B1, folic acid, thiamine, and riboflavin.
Both chondroitin and glucosamine are typically required for a senior dog’s diet in order to retain the range of motion and full functionality of the dog’s joints. With Nulo Senior Dog Food, you have nothing to worry about as it even comes with the essential fatty acids apart from chondroitin and glucosamine.
- This dog food recipe contains rich sources of glucosamine and chondroitin, both of which are essential for the formation and maintenance of healthy bones and joints in senior dogs.
- Nulo’s senior dog food contains a healthy amount of pure probiotic strains to make it easier for the pooch to digest the kibbles and, in the long run, strengthen the digestive system of senior dogs.
- The wholesome fruits and vegetables that make up this Nulo recipe provide antioxidants that promote and support canine immune health.
- This Nulo recipe also contains L-carnitine, which makes it easier for senior dogs to carry out metabolic activities, thereby promoting healthy weight and stamina.
- The high-meat content and low-carb formulation of this senior food recipe provide amino acids that are broken down into energy needed for aging pooches to carry out their daily activities.
- Some dogs have developed allergic reactions, such as hair loss and diarrhea, to ingredients contained in this Nulo Senior recipe.
- This Nulo dog food recipe has a strong flavor that deters some dogs from consuming the kibbles.
#10 AvoDerm Advanced Senior Health Dog Food
You may be wondering why this senior dog food contains avocado. Contrary to popular belief, avocado is actually a fantastic ingredient, most especially for dog food for older dogs.
Because dogs can’t digest the pit or the skin of the avocado, just the fruit meat is added to the formula.
Avocado in this senior dog food makes it dense with nutrients, giving the animal several different vitamins and minerals as well as antioxidants.
Just like flaxseed, an avocado is rich in omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, both of which assist brain and heart functions. As you may already know, an avocado is an excellent source of protein.
But, that’s not the only protein source with the AvoDerm Advanced Senior Health Dog Food. Its main ingredient, lamb, gives senior dogs a protein source that’s easier on their digestive systems.
The best aspect about the AvoDerm Advanced Senior Health Dog Food is the added organic California avocado. Together with the other high-quality ingredients, an aging dog will be able to maintain its joint health and eye and brain function with the formula.
- AvoDerm’s advanced formula contains natural sources of chondroitin sulfate and glucosamine, both of which offer support and protection for the bones and joints of aging pooches.
- The avocado and its oil content contained in this dog food product are rich in essential fatty acids, thereby ensuring that the coats and skins of senior pooches maintain a polished appearance.
- DHA, which is obtained from salmon, contained in this AvoDerm recipe supports healthy brain and eye functions and ensures that aging dogs don’t lose their cognitive abilities.
- The grain-free formulation of this senior health dog food product is ideal for pooches with an allergy to grain and other related ingredients.
- AvoDerm’s advanced recipe is cooked and prepared in the brand’s California plant, with the ingredients procured from reputable sources in the United States, Canada, and New Zealand.
- The kibbles of this dog food product are reportedly too hard and large for small-sized senior dogs to conveniently chew.
- Several customers claim that the frequency of their dog’s stooling increased after consumption of this advanced AvoDerm recipe.
#11 Instinct Raw Boost Adult Grain-Free Dry Dog Food
Instinct Raw Boost’s high protein count is from the cage-free chicken added as the first ingredient of this product on our list of the best senior dog foods. It landed a spot as it doesn’t contain any potato, wheat, grain, wheat, or by-product meals.
You will also find no traces of preservatives and artificial coloring in its formulation.
Featuring 70% nutritious oils and meats from animals, plus 30% veggies, fruits, and other wholesome ingredients, it can help even senior dogs develop strong and lean muscles.
Just like other top senior dog foods from trusted brands, it comes with the guarantee that it has natural probiotics and antioxidants to support an aging dog’s immune system and digestive health.
The biggest reason why we support the consumption of Instinct Raw Boost Adult Grain-Free Dry Dog Food is because it closely resembles a dog’s natural diet. It also provides just the right amount of vitamins and minerals.
- Instinct Raw kibbles are freeze-dried to preserve the product’s flavor and ensure that pooches will have little or no objections when it is time to feed.
- This grain-free dog food contains guaranteed levels of calcium and phosphorus to facilitate the development of strong teeth, bones, and joints in senior dogs.
- This dry dog food product contains natural DHA, which is obtained from chicken eggs, to ensure that the eyesight and brains of senior dogs remain sharp and continue to function optimally.
- L-carnitine contained in this adult recipe assists senior dogs with the burning of fatty ingredients to support healthy metabolism of nutrients.
- This adult recipe is packed with high-quality protein gotten from real chicken to promote the formation and maintenance of lean muscle mass in senior dogs.
- Multiple customers have reported disruptions in their pooches’ gastrointestinal tracts, resulting in severe diarrhea, after consumption of this grain-free dog food.
- Not all Instinct Raw food packages contain the freeze-dried kibbles that are advertised by the brand.
#12 Eukanuba Senior Maintenance Dry Dog Food
A sure winner for dogs aged 7 and above is the Eukanuba Senior Maintenance Dry Dog Food. As a matter of fact, this is a favorite among senior dogs because of its chicken and poultry flavors.
Of course, it has chicken as its main ingredient, which is why the senior dog food is worth recommending. A 30-lb bag of this senior dog food also comes with vegetables and essential fatty acids.
This means it’s rich in vitamins that will give a dog’s skin and coat better health and appearance.
The only problem with the Eukanuba Senior Maintenance Dry Dog Food that we’ve seen is its wheat gluten content.
It can’t be given to a dog with a sensitive gut.
If your aging pooch is strong and healthy, then it is a very good choice, especially because of the fact that dogs love fresh chicken!
Not all senior dog foods are up to par with what we think is the best one that’s currently available in the market. But, the Eukanuba Senior Maintenance Dry Dog Food manages to provide senior dogs with a balanced diet while retaining a low price!.
- The inclusion of DHA in this Eukanuba recipe provides the nutrition needed to keep a senior dog’s brain healthy and active.
- The optimal levels of fat and carbohydrates contained in this dry dog food provide the energy needed to fuel the daily activities of an active senior dog.
- This Eukanuba recipe is specifically formulated to meet the nutritional needs of medium-sized senior dogs, above the age of 7 years, that weigh between 24 and 54 lbs.
- The ingredient list of the Eukanuba Senior Maintenance dog food contains glucosamine and chondroitin sulfate to ensure that the joints of senior pooches remain mobile and don’t suffer degradation.
- The guaranteed antioxidant levels contained in this maintenance diet provide extra support for the weaker immune system of older dogs.
- This dry dog food contains a significant amount of filler ingredients, such as corn meal and dried beef pulp.
- The small size of this dog food’s kibbles are best suited for smaller pooches and aren’t exactly chewable for large dogs.
Senior Dog Food Buyer’s Guide
As a dog ages, it becomes susceptible to illnesses and medical conditions. As you’ve learned from the products featured above, dog food that is made specifically for older dogs helps them manage the physical changes it has to go through.
Although not all pets require a massive change in their diet or nutritional composition, there are a couple of nutrient adjustments you’ll find that can benefit our senior pooches, and they include the following:
Added Joint Supplements
As a dog ages, it may develop arthritis, especially if it is overweight. Make sure that your senior dog’s diet includes chondroitin and glucosamine supplements to deal with arthritis symptoms and soothe its pain. Also, you should consider getting dog food with a high concentration of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids. These nutrients are scientifically proven to minimize joint inflammation.
Higher Protein Content
An older dog’s protein reserves get depleted quickly compared to when it was younger. Just like humans, senior dogs also lose muscle mass gradually. That being said, a senior dog needs food that is rich in protein not just to replenish its protein reserves but also to make up for lost muscle mass. It is advisable for a dog’s diet to have 2.65 oz or more of protein for every thousand calories.
Still, you need to be cautious when you increase your dog’s protein intake. You have to ensure that its food contains a low level of phosphorous as it is detrimental to a dog’s health, most especially if it already has kidney problems. Basically, increase the protein intake whilst ensuring phosphorous is low in what the dog is eating.
The digestive systems of dogs change as they age. You may have noticed that your aging dog now has food allergies, pancreatitis, or inflammatory bowel disease. If your dog is starting to get sensitive, then only get food that is made of organic ingredients. Avoid wheat, soy, and corn as well.
You can also opt for dog food with probiotics and digestive enzymes, as they will ensure your dog has regular bowel movements and a healthy digestive system.
Vitamins And Minerals
Vitamins and minerals boost the immune system of your dog and keep it disease-free. Before you purchase any dog food, check the ingredients list to make sure these essential elements are included.
Bonus: For a dog that’s suffering from constipation, dog food that’s high in fiber will help. Still, be cautious as too much fiber will compromise the animal’s ability to absorb all the other essential nutrients.
No matter the size and breed, your aging best friend deserves nothing but the best. Because it is now entering its golden years, it is just right that you give it all the love, care, and attention in the world. Of course, that includes a balanced diet and nutritious food!
The highest quality of all the products we tested, as well as the gentlest to a dog’s stomach, is our top pick. With it, your canine buddy can age while remaining healthy and strong.