Puppy Dry Food for Sensitive Stomachs

Puppy dry food is often recommended as a way to encourage dogs to eat (they enjoy the feel of the kibble in their mouths) and also to keep their teeth clean between brushings. In some instances, though, dogs can develop stomach problems that may make feeding them more complicated.

First, we’ll look at some common causes of stomach problems in puppies, and then we’ll look at some dry diets for dogs with stomach problems.

The Causes of Canine Stomach Problems

Stomach problems in dogs, such as diarrhea, flatulence or vomiting, can be caused by a variety of factors, including food sensitivity, overeating, internal parasites, viruses or consumed foreign objects. If your dog develops signs of a stomach problem, make an appointment with your veterinarian to determine the cause of the problem.

Another cause of stomach problems in dogs is switching brands of food too quickly. If you must switch brands of food, try to do so over a seven- to 10-day period, gradually increasing the amount of the new food being served while decreasing the amount of the old food.

Bloat Can Cause Life-Threatening Problems

Some breeds of dog are prone to a potentially fatal digestive problem called bloat. Breeds with deep, narrow chests, such as chows, great Danes, bloodhounds, mastiffs, Akitas and German shepherds, are prone to developing bloat.

Signs of bloat include a swollen stomach, pale gums and irregular breathing. Your dog may try to vomit or eliminate unsuccessfully. Bloat is a serious condition that requires immediate veterinary attention.

One way to prevent bloat is to feed your dog from an elevated bowl. This will help keep him from wolfing down his food. You should also limit exercise for at least two hours after your dog eats.

Finding a Sensitive-Stomach Food

Now that you know some of the causes of stomach problems in puppies, let’s look at some of the sensitive-stomach dog foods currently on the market:

  • AvoDerm offers AvoDerm Natural Chicken Meal and Brown Rice Puppy Formula, containing avocadoes, chicken meal and brown rice, is designed for puppies with sensitivities to other protein sources. This product is available in both small and large breed formulas.
  • Blue Buffalo makes two sensitive stomach formulations for adult dogs: Blue Buffalo Basics Salmon and Potato and Blue Buffalo Basics Turkey and Potato. Both feature holistic, limited-ingredient diets that provide nutrition for dogs that may be sensitive to commercial pet foods. The company also makes Blue Buffalo Life Protection Puppy Formula, which features chicken and lamb, along with whole grains, vegetables and brown rice.
  • Hill’s Pet Products offers Science Diet Sensitive Stomach for Adult Dogs that features brewer’s rice and chicken by-product meal. The company also offers Science Diet Puppy Lamb and Rice, which provides an easy-to-digest combination of lamb meal, rice and a combination of omega-6 fatty acids for coat and skin health.
  • Nutro offers Nutro Natural Choice Chicken Meal, Rice and Oatmeal Formula, Nutro Natural Choice Venison Meal and Whole Brown Rice Formula or Nutro Natural Choice Herring Meal, Rice and Potato Formula for adult dogs with sensitive stomachs. The company also makes Nutro Natural Choice Ultra Puppy Food, which uses all-natural chicken meal, brown rice, lamb meal and other ingredients to provide nutrition for growing puppies.

New dog food formulations are being created regularly, so conduct an online search for “puppy food sensitive stomach” to locate other products that may work for your dog.