If you are thinking of feeding your dog a high protein diet, whether you just feel that it is best for them or your veterinarian has recommended it, it is a good idea for you to learn more about the benefits that come along with a high protein diet. First of all, it is important to understand that protein contains amino acids that are key nutrients for your dog’s overall health and wellness. Some dogs just may not get enough protein in their diet, and therefore a high protein dog food is recommended.
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What Dogs Benefit Most From High Protein Diets?
If you are wondering whether or not your dog could use additional protein, here are a few things to consider. Puppies, seniors in good health, and dogs that need to lose weight may benefit from a dog food that is higher in protein.
Senior dogs who are in good health will require an increase in their dietary protein to help them keep up their lean muscle mass. As they get older, the muscles may start to wither away and deteriorate, making it harder for them to get around. Just remember, seniors that have kidney issues and sensitivities may not really be best suited for high protein dog food. The waste from their protein must be passed through the kidneys out of the body, and you should talk to your vet to make sure that it is safe for your pet.
The good news is that high quality proteins are typically digested nearly completely, making far less waste that must pass through the kidneys. For this reason, if you do decide to feed your dog a high protein diet, it is definitely a good idea for you to look into a food that is going to be high in quality. While this usually means it will be more expensive, you can’t skimp out when it comes to your dog’s health and wellness.
High Protein and Weight Loss
Protein and weight loss go hand in hand. There have been many studies conducted with dogs and humans that show an increase in protein consumption can actually help to facilitate in weight loss and shedding excess fat, while promoting lean muscle mass at the same time. When a food has more protein, it can help them to burn more calories, thus promoting a healthier weight. Talk to your vet if your pup is overweight and see if upping their protein intake may be a good idea.
Introducing Your Dog to High Protein Dog Food
Your dog may not take to the new food right away, especially if they are used to something different with less protein. It is always recommended to gradually switch them to the new food. Start by introducing it a little bit at a time, mixed into their regular food. Gradually increase the amount of high protein food that you give them, and decrease the amount of the previous food. Over the course of a week to a week and a half, you should have them switched over fully without causing stomach upset or having them turn their nose up to the bowl. If you do have struggles, you may need to look into treats that are high in protein, as they can also help to increase protein intake as you work towards switching them to a more suitable food that is going to offer them the appropriate levels of quality proteins that they require.
If your vet does in fact recommend increasing your dog’s protein intake, they may recommend a prescription diet. If they do, then it is a good idea to follow through with their recommendation. If they just suggest that you find a food that is higher in protein, we have compiled a list of some of the best high protein dog foods on the market.
Our Picks for the Top 10 High Protein Dog Food
#1 – AvoDerm Natural Triple Protein Meal Formula Dog Food
The AvoDerm brand is a trusted brand name when it comes to quality dog food. This particular formula is made up of chicken, turkey and lamb meal. It only has high quality ingredients that help to ensure optimal health for your pup. The nutrients are also rich in antioxidants, helping to support exceptional immunity. Avocados are also included in the ingredients because they are rich in omega fatty acids that help to promote a healthy coat and healthy skin. There are no wheat, corn or soy, and also no animal byproduct meals. It is made up of a minimum of 26% protein, and is formulated for dogs of all life stages.
#2 – Purina Pro Plan Dry Dog Food Sport Performance 30/20 Formula
Purina is another well known name in the dog food industry. This particular formula is formulated with a minimum of 30% protein and 20% fat to help meet your pup’s metabolic needs and help them maintain a lean muscle mass. It also has built in amino acids that help to keep the muscles healthy, and concentrated nutrient levels that help to boost endurance in working and active dogs by optimizing oxygen metabolism. Your dog will also benefit from healthy joints and ease of mobility thanks to the omega fatty acids and glucosamine included in the recipe.
#3 – The Nutro Company High Protein Grain Free Recipe for Dogs
If you are looking for a high protein formula with limited ingredients, then consider the Nutro Company High Protein Grain Free recipe. It is free of wheat, corn, rice and other grains, but isn’t lacking in protein at all. It has a whopping 32% protein. It is also low in the glycemic index, with healthy veggies like split peas and chickpeas. Other great added nutrients include Zinc, B-vitamins and omega fatty acids. Basically, it is everything that your dog needs nutrient wise, without the grains that tend to upset sensitive stomachs.
#4 – Victor Dog Food Select Hi-Pro Plus Formula for Active Dogs
For dogs with a gluten intolerance, finding a food that is high in protein and adequate in nutrients may not be the easiest. The good news is that Victor Dog Food Select Hi-Pro Plus Formula for active dogs offers your dog just what they need when it comes to nutrients, including extra protein, without the gluten. The Victor name has been well trusted in the pet food industry since the 1950’s. It is a 100% gluten free recipe that contains USA sourced chicken meal, pork meal and beef meal. There are guaranteed levels of Omega fatty acids and other essential vitamins, like Vitamin E. It also contains prebiotics that help to support healthy digestion.
#5 – Nature’s Variety Instinct Ultimate Protein Grain Free Dry Dog Food
With Nature’s Variety Instinct Ultimate Protein Grain Free formula, you will find pure ingredients and protein packed nutrients. It is high in protein, no grains, and is also made with real chicken (no meals or by-products). 95% of the protein found in this recipe comes from real chicken, meaning it has essentially 3 times more chicken than your average dry kibble. It is also packed with omega fatty acids to help promote soft and shiny fur, antioxidants to help promote a healthy immune system, and prebiotics to boost their digestive system. It is definitely the ultimate choice when it comes to protein levels, digestibility and palatability.
#6 – Sportmix High Protein Original Recipe Dry Dog Food
When you have an active dog, you really have to make sure that you choose their food wisely. Sportmix High Protein Original Recipe dry formula is 100% guaranteed formulated for active dogs. It has a crude protein level of no less than 27%, crude fat level of no less than 12%, and a crude fiber level of no more than 45%. It also contains no more than 10% moisture. Many kibbles you see on the market contain high levels of moisture, meaning that it doesn’t contain as much percentage of nutrients as it could. That means that low moisture formulas are more nutrient dense. Just remember, when you feed a low moisture kibble to your pup, it is important to keep clean fresh water available for them at all times.
#7 – Natural Choice High Protein Grain Free RecipeNatural Choice High Protein Grain Free recipe provides your dog the nutrients that they need without the grains. Since grains are known for causing stomach upset in dogs with sensitive stomachs, more people find that they need to put their pup on a grain free diet. This formula is low glycemic, and has only healthy carbohydrates that help to give your dog healthy energy that sustains throughout the day. There are real protein sources that help to give your dog healthy muscle mass. You can choose from puppy, young adult, adult and senior formulas based on your pup’s live stage. For natural nutrition that offers your pup everything they need nutritionally, consider Natural Choice.
#8 – Solid Gold Barking at the Moon High Protein Low Carb Grain & Gluten Free Food for Dogs
For those natural and holistic pet owners, Solid Gold Barking at the Moon High Protein formula may be a great choice. It is not only natural, but also grain free and gluten free, offering your dog high performance nutrients that are safe and appropriate for all life stages, from puppy to senior. It is crafted with the Gold Source core nutrition, which is a proprietary blend of nutrients that your dog needs in order to be healthy. It is low in carbs, and has ingredients such as deboned beef, peas, eggs, and ocean fish protein that helps to promote healthy skin and fur. It is also free of soy, wheat and corn, which are common food allergens in dogs.
#9 – Wells PRO PAC High Performance Dog Food
If you are looking for a dog food that will be safe for pregnant or nursing dogs, or a food that is nutrient packed for puppies, then consider Wells PRO PAC High Performance Dog Food. It is high in protein and fat, and is also really tasty and easy for your dog to digest. It is packed with omega fatty acids for a healthy skin and coat, and has 100% guaranteed nutrition for dogs in all life stages. It has no artificial preservatives and is also guaranteed to please your dog’s taste buds!
#10 – Eukanuba Premium Performance Adult 30/20 Dog Food
Working and sporting dogs need a lot of protein to keep up with their activity levels. Eukanuba’s Premium Performance Adult 30/20 dog food is packed with premium proteins to help sustain lean muscle mass and offer peak levels of energy for performance. If you are looking for a food that is free of fillers, and offers your dog everything that they need to have 100% complete and balance nutrition, this is a great pick. It has added calcium to promote a strong skeletal system. It also has the 3D Dentadefense system, which has been guaranteed proven to reduce the buildup of tartar in as little as four weeks. That means it is not only great for your dog’s digestion, but it is also great for their oral health.
Has your dog tried any of these high protein dog food formulas? If so, leave your review below! Did we leave any off of the list? Feel free to share your favorite picks with us as well. We always enjoy feedback from our readers.