There are some dogs that jump at the opportunity to eat. But then there are others that simply refuse to eat during mealtime. It’s probably because you’re feeding your little pooch yummy table scraps and snacks all the time. But if that’s not the case, then there must be another reason. Whatever the cause though, here is the best dog food for picky eaters.
Let’s just assume you’re feeding steak or bacon from your plate to your dog. So how do you expect him/her to consume his boring dry food after getting a taste of that delicious meat? Therefore, the first thing you’ve got to do is stop feeding that kind of food.
I mean there are plenty of ways to encourage healthier eating in a dog. And I’m going to talk about that in my comprehensive guide section. As for now, let me introduce you to the most appetizing dog food for fussy eaters…
Best Dog Food for Picky Eaters 2021
#1 Blue Buffalo Wilderness High Protein Grain Free Natural Adult Dry Dog Food – Best Dry Dog Food For Picky Eaters
No doubt, the first choice is the best in the dry dog food department. First of all, it’s packed with high-protein chicken. For building and maintaining your doggo’s muscle mass.
On top of that, the recipe is grain-free. It’s got healthy carbohydrates that include peas and potatoes. So your pet’s active lifestyle doesn’t get affected. Omega 3 and 6 fatty acids are also added. These support coat and skin health.
Since the brand is Blue Buffalo Wilderness, you should expect their exclusive LifeSource Bits. These consist of the perfect blend of minerals, vitamins, and antioxidants. That has been proven to support the immune system. Along with supporting the requirements of all the life stages of your dog.
But, more importantly, fussy eaters are bound to enjoy the taste of this healthy meal. So much so that even their poop starts to come out normal. And bonus points for reduced shedding. And you won’t even notice your dog licking his/her skin that often.
- Real, high-protein chicken
- Balanced carbohydrates for an active lifestyle
- With phosphorous and calcium to support bones and teeth
#2 Wellness 95% Natural Wet Grain Free Canned Dog Food – Best Wet Dog Food For Picky Eaters
If you’re looking for the best tasting wet dog food, then you’ve finally found it. This recipe you can feed as it is. Or add it as a topper over your fussy pooch’s regular dry food. Whatever the case, the benefits are always a part of the experience. Such as healthy digestion, skin, coat, immunity, eyes, teeth, gums, and energy.
Only high-quality, natural ingredients are added. It’s actually one of the purest protein-packed canned recipes for canines. 95-percent of super-premium meat is used. If you ask me, it’s a very natural way of increasing your dog’s water or moisture intake in the day.
And when dog food is formulated to be both nutritious and delicious, then you’ve got to give it a try. Especially when the recipe ranks as an excellent choice as a topper for the fussiest eaters.
There have been scenarios where dogs don’t eat dry food for days. They’d rather starve themselves. So, at such times, this wet food mixed with their dry food saves the day, quite literally.
You may have to keep the meals more interesting by switching between beef, turkey, chicken, lamb, and salmon. As long as there are healthy varieties, then why not include them!
- Formulated with high-quality ingredients
- 95% of the content is all-natural meat
- Grain-free and good for a sensitive tummy
#3 Purina Pro Plan SAVOR Shredded Blend Adult Dry Dog Food – Best Dog Food For Digestive Health
Advanced nutrition in the form of Purina Pro Plan SAVOR is perfect for every canine’s daily diet. No matter how picky your dog is when it comes to eating. After all, the recipe contains real beef. Other varieties like a lamb, chicken, and salmon are also available. It’s the first ingredient, which is always a good thing.
The formula is the best as far as digestibility is concerned. And for fussy dogs, the kibbles are made very tender, crunchy, and meaty. Ideal texture for arousing your pet’s appetite and taste buds.
There are a lot of antioxidants for supporting immune health. So it’s not just the digestive health that benefits here. However, boosting digestive health is the reason you should buy this. All thanks to the inclusion of natural prebiotic fiber and live probiotics.
The flavorful meal, no doubt, is packed with balanced nutrition. And the fact that tender-textured shredded meat is added makes mealtime an exciting experience. That even the pickiest eaters look forward to every day.
- Tender, meaty pieces with crunchy kibbles
- Formulated with prebiotics and probiotics for digestion
- Vitamin A and fatty acids also added for healthy skin and coat
#4 Rachael Ray Nutrish Natural Premium Dry Dog Food – Best Affordable Dog Food For Picky Eaters
Did you ever think you couldn’t get the best dog food for picky eaters at a budget-friendly price? Well, to be honest, I didn’t think so either. Not until I came across the Rachael Ray Nutrish Natural Premium Dry Dog Food recipe. In this one, the first ingredient is chicken. Expect to find no wheat, gluten, fillers, and poultry by-products.
The real chicken is easily digestible and lean. So that takes care of building and maintaining lean muscle mass. Then there are peas for providing essential dietary fiber, minerals, and vitamins. And these are much-needed for boosting digestive health.
Furthermore, crisp carrots packed with carotenoids are also included. Therefore, the immune system benefits as well. And lastly, there’s brown rice for healthy carbohydrates and wholesome fiber.
Also, did you know that a part of the profit Nutrish makes goes to the animal foundation Rachael Ray has established? So it’s all for a good cause while also being affordable.
As for picky eaters, there’s no chance yours is going to turn up his/her nose to the food. It’s highly likely that you’ll notice a drastic change in the stool consistency of your dog as well. If you ask me, it’s not that common to stumble upon dog food that’s so pocket-friendly. And, at the same time, it doesn’t cause allergies and loose stools.
You can keep rotating between chicken and beef. To keeps mealtime interesting and exciting for your fussy little adorable creature.
- Natural recipe with added minerals and vitamins
- High-quality, carefully selected protein
- Improves digestive health
#5 Wellness Simple Natural Limited Ingredient Dry Dog Food – Best Tasting Limited Ingredient Dog Food
For a completely balanced limited ingredient diet, you can rely on this salmon and potato recipe by Wellness. Needless to say, it’s one of the best fussy dog food recipes. Without any artificial preservatives or flavors, gluten, corn, soy, and wheat. In short, it’s a simple formula with a single-source, premium protein as the #1 ingredient.
Before I forget to mention, I found flaxseed in the list of ingredients. Let me tell you that flaxseed does an excellent job of nourishing your dog’s skin.
In fact, this food is a very suitable choice for canines with a sensitive tummy as well. So, needless to say, it’s a good option for picky eaters. You can feed the food for years to come. And your fussy little pooch is still going to devour it each time. You can maybe mix it with something else, something light every few months.
- Easily digestible carbohydrates
- High-quality, real, single-source protein
- The fish smell is very tempting for fussy eaters
#6 Taste of the Wild High Protein Real Meat Recipe Premium Dry Dog Food – Best High-Protein Dog Food For Picky Eaters
Firstly, it’s got roasted venison and roasted bison. So that means highly digestible protein is a huge part of the food. And it’s a part that fussy canines certainly appreciate. The unique taste of roasted venison and bison is something that every dog craves. No matter how picky!
Apart from that, the recipe is infused with specific probiotics. That is vital when it comes to supporting immune and digestive health. The brand’s exclusive K9 Strain Probiotics are involved. Each pound of food has as many as 80 million active, live cultures. That does the best job of boosting the immune and digestive system.
What’s more, is that fatty acids are a part of all this too. So your dog’s coat and skin condition also improved. For picky eaters, the kibbles are relatively smaller. Plus, the food doesn’t cause any bad gas either.
- High protein with added minerals and vitamins
- Highly-digestible and nutrient-rich probiotics
- Improvement in the quantity and size of bowels
#7 Instinct Freeze Dried Raw Boost Mixers Grain-Free All Natural Dog Food Toppers – Best Dog Food Toppers For Picky Eaters
Raw dog food for picky eaters promotes better digestion, relief from food allergies, and weight management. Such as this one, which you can add as toppers. To make your pet’s mealtime more exciting and appetizing.
Raw ingredients here equal to raw vegetables, fruits, meat, and other wholesome goodness. The food is minimally processed. And that means most nutrients are kept intact. The natural flavors, amino acids, minerals, vitamins, and antioxidants are retained for the most part.
Also, these ingredients are freeze-dried. And this means a longer shelf life. More importantly, though, the food is perfect for times when your dog becomes very picky with his regular kibbles. That explains the crushable texture of the boosters. There’s no doubt the food works miracles even if your dog has a sensitive stomach.
Months and years go by without your canine ever fussing about his/her mealtime ever again. There are ground bits of chicken bone in here. Just make sure these are not too large or sharp. Because if they are, demand a refund. Or go for a freeze-dried raw formula like this without any ground bones.
- Free of grains and meat by-products
- Minimally processed and protein-packed
- Longer shelf life and easily crushable boosters
#8 The Honest Kitchen Human Grade Dehydrated Organic Whole Grain Dog Food – Best Organic Dog Food For Picky Eaters
Made using free-range chicken and then dehydrated to maximize nutrition. This organic dog food is a great choice for adult canines and pups. The recipe consists of low fat, low protein, and low calorie. An ideal choice if you want to keep the weight of your pet under control.
The term human-grade is a part of the product title on Amazon. And this ensures that safety standards and high-quality ingredients are involved. The food is all-natural. Meaning no GMO ingredients, preservatives, and by-products. Although whole grains are used. But there is a grain-free version of this too.
Your picky dog is certainly going to lick every bit of the food from his/her bowl. To become more energetic and lean. With a shiny and healthy coat and skin. The time for preparation may take 5 minutes. But when you see your fussy pet devouring the food, it’s all be worth it.
Let me also mention that the food is great for senior dogs as well. And, as you already know, also for those trying to lose weight.
- Human-grade and easily digestible
- All-natural and made with organic grains
- Perfect for dogs with GI or weight problems
Being A Picky Eater Can Be Just A Temporary Thing
More often than not, fussy eating habits are only short-lived. There are moments when your pet gobbles down whatever comes his/her way. But then sometimes they just refuse to eat. No matter how hard you try. Or how hungry they are.
The good news here is that this pickiness can be temporary. And when it is, the issue gets resolved on its own. Most times, you don’t even need to do anything about it. Like, buy the best dog food for picky eaters. Even so, it’s always a better idea to talk to your vet about the problem.
Possible Causes of Your Dog Being Fussy with Food
Speaking of which, sometimes there is an underlying cause. Such as the following medical conditions…
● Digestive Problems
Much like humans, even dogs can suffer from mild to severe digestion difficulties. So it’s only natural even for a dog to refuse to eat. Or lose his/her appetite completely.
Gastrointestinal issues are quite common among canines as it is. In that case, dog food equipped with dietary fiber is a must. But do figure out if this is just a systemic condition. Or a reaction to some ingredient present in the food you’re feeding.
Once again, speak to your vet for more information.
● Hormonal Problems
It’s the most common in female dogs that aren’t neutered. But this doesn’t mean male dogs and altered female dogs cannot have hormonal imbalances. This usually happens in the case of hormonally-caused anorexia.
However, picky eating habits because of such a condition is generally temporary.
● Dental Problems
Gum disease, decaying teeth, or other such dental issues can be another common cause. I mean can you eat if your gum or teeth hurt every single time you chew? Of course not, right? This means you have to speak to the vet. And get the condition checked and treated.
And then you can prevent the problem from occurring again. Simply by feeding kibbles that are created to eliminate tartar and plaque. There are plenty of dental chews for that. But just consult with your vet before feeding these to your precious little pooch.
I know this sounds horrifying; it’s probably an unlikely scenario. But you have to rule out the possibility nevertheless. Tumors, when detected early, are easier to treat.
So if your canine is acting unreasonably fussy over a matter of days and weeks. Then please take him/her to the vet.
Best Dog Food for Picky Eaters – What Does or Should It Have?
What is it about these formulas that make them so appetizing? So much so that dogs who don’t eat for days get excited for mealtime once again.
Here are all the factors you should be keeping in mind. Particularly when buying dog food for a fussy creature!
1. High-Quality, High-Protein Meat
Dogs do not come from ancestors that survived on a plant-based diet. Their ancestors, no doubt, thrived on a meat-based diet. So it’s only natural for a dog, even a picky one, to devour meat.
They may enjoy consuming fruits and vegetables too. But not like they savor meat. Such as chicken, turkey, salmon, lamb, and beef. In fact, most dog food recipes are packed with calories that mainly come from these types of meat varieties.
Just make sure the meat is high-quality. Don’t go for meat by-products. Choose real chicken, real lamb, real beef, real salmon, real turkey, etc. Stay away from any artificialities is what I mean.
Novel Protein Diets for Pets
2. Healthy, Controlled Fat
The most common ones being omega fatty acids. These promote skin and coat health like no other ingredient.
Also, fats should be animal-based. If it’s plant-based, then it’s not fat, rather it’s oil. However, both are well appreciated by canines. But, needless to say, dogs prefer animal fat. As it tends to make the food taste better.
3. Tasty Vegetables and Fruits
Sweet fruits and fresh veggies are often a favorite among dogs. Such as bananas, strawberries, spinach, broccoli, etc. So make sure you select a formula that contains wholesome fruits and veggies. Because these offer much-needed antioxidants, minerals, and vitamins. Leaving them out means leaving out a whole list of health benefits.
4. Real Ingredients, No Artificial Flavors
As I’ve already mentioned, go for real ingredients. Ditch artificially enhanced elements like meat by-products. Because the former is bound to taste more delicious and appetizing than the latter. And this is very important when dealing with a picky eater.
Tips for Getting Your Fussy Dog to Eat Again
#1 Add Some Wet Food To The Kibbles
Dogs are not like cats, meaning they don’t enjoy all-wet food that much. Instead, most of them prefer semi-moist formulas. So you can add some wet food into the dry kibbles.
Also, the former is often a more expensive choice than the latter. So you don’t end up using a lot. At the same time, you bring about the changes that are long overdue. It’s actually one of the most effective ways to feed a fussy animal.
#2 Warm Up The Food Slightly
A simple remedy; warming up your dog’s food. It sort of makes the kibbles look and feel more enticing to a dog.
But don’t go overboard by heating the food too much. It should be warm, and not hot. That means no more than 30 seconds in your microwave.
#3 Add A Healthy Additive
There’s another thing you can add instead of wet food. Healthy additives like shredded carrots, some blueberries, a little bit cheddar cheese, or a sprinkle of sunflower seeds. These are a healthy choice, no doubt. Just make sure to include the additional calories in your dog’s daily diet plan.
#4 Moisten The Food A Bit
How about sprinkling some water over your dog’s dry kibbles to make them moist? It’s actually a very good idea to get your pet to eat. You can also use chicken broth, the low-sodium kind.
To make the meal even more tempting, heat the water or broth for 30 seconds before adding. This creates an appetizing aroma. Heating makes everything smell delicious, right? I’m sure your dog would agree with me.
My choice: Blue Buffalo Wilderness High Protein Grain Free Natural Adult Dry Dog Food
Your dog being picky becomes a problem when he/she refuses to eat even once in a day. I mean you can’t get your little pooch to consume food even once a day. Then that means there’s some underlying issue. And that you need to get it checked by taking your dog to the vet.
But if your pet has always been a fussy eater, then how about feeding the best dog food for picky eaters. It’s the best option for those who suddenly stop eating out of the blue.
A dry dog food formula by Blue Buffalo Wilderness. And a canned version by Wellness is a great option. They’re definitely worth a try because they have worked for many canines. With an unhealthy or fussy eating habit. And for those with stomach sensitivities or food allergies.