Did you know that senior dogs need special types of nutrients in their food to ensure they enjoy the best possible quality of life in their golden years? Our Clemmons veterinarians give their top picks on the best dog food for senior dogs.
What's the best food for senior dogs?
By the time your dog reaches their golden years (which is about 7 years for small dogs and 5 to 6 for larger breeds), they may have special dietary needs due to reduced functionality and energy levels as a result of growing older.
During routine exams, we often receive questions about which food is best for senior dogs, since as they age conditions such as diabetes, heart disease and other health issues such as obesity can reduce quality of life and even longevity. Much like their humans, the food they eat needs to help them maintain their health.
Depending on your dog’s lifestyle and weight (since obesity is a major health risk in dogs of all ages), they could respond positively to a specialized high-fiber, high-protein, low-sodium and low-fat diet. This specially formulated food can help your dog stay in tip-top shape.
Other ingredients to look for in food for senior dogs include:
Glucosamine and chondroitin
Help your senior dog maintain strong joints so they can continue to enjoy all your adventures, whether it’s games of catch or time in the pool.
Key to preventing unhealthy weight gain, this amino acid helps your dog maintain a healthy body.
Digestive enzymes and probiotics
Because some senior dogs develop sensitive stomachs as they age, they may need help maintaining digestive health. Digestive enzymes (including protease, amylase and cellulase) and probiotics keep your dog regular.
Best Dog Food for Senior Dogs
Grain-Free: Wellness CORE Grain-Free Senior Deboned Turkey Recipe Dry Dog Food
This low-calorie, high-protein is packed with premium, all-natural ingredients, nutrient-rich superfoods and nutritional supplements, minus fillers such as wheat, corn, and soy.
Best for Digestion: Wellness Complete Health Natural Dry Senior Dog Food, Chicken & Barley
Maintaining a healthy digestive track is a must for older dogs, and Wellness Complete Health Natural Dry Senior Dog Food, Chicken & Barley helps them do just that with microorganisms to help digestive health, Yucca Schidigera extract to reduce odor in stool, and 4.25% fiber (which is higher than average).
Best for Joint Health: Dogswell Happy Hips Chicken & Oats Dry Dog Food
With real cage-free chicken (without added growth hormones or steroids) as the first ingredient, Dogswell’s amino acids are great for muscle development and help your senior dog maintain muscle tone.
Antioxidant nutrients such as Vitamins A and E are included to support a healthy immune system, while glucosamine and chondroitin support proactive hip and joint health. Your senior dog will also love the real fruits and vegetables that help support his digestion and intestinal health.
Wondering what you should feed your senior dog? Contact our Clemmons animal clinic today for advice.
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