As we age, our dietary habits change. We digest food differently at twenty and fifty years old, and a heavily spicy dinner can go from a treat to being punishing.
Unsurprisingly, dogs’ digestive systems also undergo changes as they age. Choosing the best senior dog food for your dog can get tricky, depending upon which dog you have, what his requirements are like, and what he prefers.
Typically, larger dogs older than six years and smaller dogs older than nine years are considered senior dogs. Their metabolisms slow down progressively and they need lower calorie, lower sodium, but micronutrient rich food to help delay ageing and prevent obesity, which can cause complications with progressive age.
Specialized senior dog foods help keep older pooches happy and playful, even as they grow older. To help find out what suits your dog’s needs, here are some of the best senior dog foods UK dog owners can choose from.
Best Senior Dog Foods – Top 7
Purina is already one of the most recognized brands, when it comes to pet food. Small wonder then, that this popular brand has special dog food options tailored for senior dogs.
The Beta Senior Dog Food is one of the best senior dry dog foods out there. It is available in chicken flavor which is one of their bestselling offerings. Designed expressly for older dogs and manufactured ‘at home’ from their site in Suffolk, the Purina Beta Senior Dog food promises all-round nutrition for canine seniors, in delicious flavours.
The emphasis of the recipe is on providing a balanced and healthy meal for your dog at each mealtime. The largest portion of the mix is chicken making up 29% of the recipe. This provides a solid protein base, which covers your dog’s reduced protein needs, but also makes sure that he receives all the essential amino acids needed for his daily requirements. Chicken is not only universally popular with dogs, but is also bland, lean, and easily digested. In fact, few (if any) dogs have issues digesting chicken. So even dogs with sensitive stomachs do extremely well with Purina Beta Senior Food.
The recipe combines chicken with bland complex carbohydrates from wheat and cornmeal, which provide a steady source of carbohydrates at mealtimes, without overloading your dog’s digestive system like other grains can. Also, being mild and non-irritant, they pose no problems for dogs with sensitive stomachs or fussy palates.
And then there’s all the sources of fibre, which vegetable derivatives like dried beet pulp, carrots, dried chicory root, dried spinach, parsley, etc. All of these come together for a delicious, flavourful experience for your old pup.
But these ingredients are bolstered by added macro and micronutrients as well. These include added healthy fats, ranging from poultry fat to added fish oils and omega 3 fatty acids. These heart healthy fats help support your dog’s cardiac system and make sure that he meets his daily requirement of essential fatty acids without any unhealthy cholesterol in his diet.
In addition, there are vitamins like vitamins A, D, and E and added minerals like Iron, Copper, Manganese, Magnesium, Zinc, Calcium, Sodium, etc. All of these are absolutely essential for the normal functioning of the body.
Iron is required for production of Hemoglobin, Calcium to maintain strong and healthy teeth, joints, and bones, and sodium for proper function of the circulatory and nervous systems, among others.
All the minerals work together to make sure that your pooch is protected from the rigors of aging, and that he doesn’t suffer the rapid degeneration that occurs on an insufficient diet. Plus, there’s also antioxidants that actively counter tissue and organ damage from the cellular level up.
And if that seems sufficiently convincing, there’s even a prebiotic added to the mix. Prebiotics help build a healthy gut flora in your dog’s intestinal tract. As a result, not only does mean no digestive issues, but also recovery from the chronic constipation that many older dogs end up having is much less likely.
All this comes bundled up in one bowl for a meal full of everything your senior dog needs and wants. There are no added preservatives or chemical additives, either. The bags come with two sizes of kibble in them, which keeps even the quickest of eaters busy with their bowl for a little while.
Also, it suits all dog breeds, and is ideal for dog owners whose pets can afford to lose some, hint hint. So if you’re looking for a one stop answer for a steady dog food for your senior dog, Purina Beta Senior Dog Food is really your best bet.
A dog food with a twist, Lily’s Kitchen Senior Salmon is an exceptional formulation. This mix offers dogs who are coming along in the years completely rounded protection against aging, lowered immunity, slower metabolisms, as well as a reduced digestive performance.
This particular flavor, salmon and trout, is ideal for dogs aged about eight years. It combines a gluten-free recipe with high quantities of meat, almost homegrown vegetables, and delicious and flavorful herbs.
After a certain age, dogs have completely different metabolic demands as their younger selves. Accommodating these is essential to making sure that they age slowly, without the permanent effects of this process. Dog foods like Lily’s Kitchen Senior recipe food are designed with these very demands in mind.
Proudly a nutritionally complete dog food, the recipe combines a large amount of freshly prepared fish and fish meal with turkey, for an all rounded protein content. The fish content is 44% fresh salmon and trout, with up to 26% turkey.
This means that in every bowl of food that your dog gets, he receives a power packed protein punch which provides him all the essential amino acids that he needs. Not to mention, salmon, trout, and turkey are all excellent sources of lean proteins. This means that there is no accompaniment of unhealthy fats in this mix.
The very high protein content also guarantees that your dog’s digestive system is not overloaded with empty carbohydrates or filler grain. Older dogs have slower metabolism and eating high carbohydrate food can accelerate obesity in them.
The carbohydrate content provided in this recipe comes from millets, an excellent gluten-free source of complex carbohydrates and fibre. Millets also provide vegetable protein, which adds to the amino acids in each serving.
In addition to this, salmon, trout, and turkey are all very easy to digest, and go easy on your dog’s digestive tract. Unlike other sources of proteins such as red meat, they do not cause side effects like heartburn or increased gastric acidity. The result is that your dog feels well and full after every meal, and digesting does not turn into a punishment for him. This encourages healthy eating habits too.
Other prominent ingredients in the recipe include vegetables like potatoes, peas, and added egg powder, nutritional yeast, pea protein, etc. These increase the amount of fiber in your dog’s diet. This in turn helps to regulate bowel movements and increases intestinal health.
Added essential fatty acids are derived from turkey fat, salmon oil, linseed, green lipped mussels, seaweed oil, and added omega-3 and six fatty acids. These add required essential fatty acids in your dog’s daily requirement, without any unhealthy fats such as LDLs or triglycerides.
These are not only heart healthy, but also necessary for good nerve conduction and preserving memory and brain function.
But the list doesn’t stop here. These ingredients get an added flavour boost from added Alfalfa, rosehips, chickweed, clover, goldenrod, nettles, kelp, celery seed, milk thistle, dandelion roots, burdock roots, marigold petals, and chicory root. These may sound like a lot, and they are, but they are all-natural sources of all the good little bits that your dog wants to nibble on during the day.
And as if that wasn’t enough for added flavour, there’s an additional herbal boost from the following: turmeric, a known health and immunity booster, boswellia, which improves memory and recall capabilities, ginger, which is famed for its immunoprotective properties, ginkgo biloba, which is renowned as a booster for mental function and longevity, and Synergen.
Added minerals make sure that your dog’s bones and joints don’t succumb to the wear and tear that makes itself known in older age, with added Glucosamine, methylsulfonylmethane, and chondroitin sulphate, all essential for strong bones and cartilage.
The microminerals quota isn’t lacking, either. Lilys Kitchen senior recipe comes boosted with naturally occurring and added vitamins A, D, E, C, and added L Carnitine. Micros like zinc, selenium, calcium, iron, manganese, copper, iodine, etc. ensure that your senior dog receives an age appropriate balanced diet.
The gluten free and high protein recipe eliminates the possibility of your dog’s digestive system suffering as a consequence of eating wheat or filler products. Dogs have trouble digesting wheat derived foods as they age, especially if they’ve eaten them when they were younger. A lot of dogs even have sensitivities, or develop them, as a result of dietary exposure.
Lilys Kitchen Senior dog food provides your pooch with everything needed for proper nutrition, healthy teeth, skin, fur, and nails, a shiny coat, healthy gut, and most of all, a happy, wagging tail!
Nutrition without compromise and more, Arden Grange Senior food lives up to its claim of providing wholesome, complete nutrition to senior dogs. This specially tailored recipe from a family run British company combines proportions of usually available ingredients in a mix that is ideal for the nutritional demands of a dog food for senior dogs.
It’s not one of the best senior dog dry foods on the market for no reason. Arden Grange senior dog food comes with a unique mix offering increased protection against age related health problems, with joint protective supplements, a gut protective formulation, and the ideal calorie intake for slower, less active older pooches.
Unlike other dog foods, this recipe is made up of mainly chicken and rice, with added vegetables and nutrients. The protein content of the food is derived from chicken meat, which provides the right proportion of protein an older dog needs.
Your dog gets all the essential amino acids without any of the gastric discomfort that other kinds of meat can cause an older dog. Not to mention, chicken also makes the food flavorful and hearty, which you dog will absolutely adore.
Rice is used as a source of complex carbohydrates, but also because it is one of the best suited carbs for dogs with food sensitivities. Commercial dog foods use wheat and cornmeal derivatives, and these can wreak havoc on a sensitive dog’s gut. Dogs are omnivores but they do not thrive on heavy carbohydrate diets.
Arden Grange senior dog food avoids this possibility altogether, with its hypoallergenic formulation. There is no added wheat, gluten, soy, dairy, beef (or red meat derived meal). There aren’t even any added artificial flavours and colors, or any chemical preservatives.
And yet dogs love the flavour, because of the added herbs and vegetables. The recipe includes maize, beet pulp, whole dried eggs, cranberries, yucca extract, and nutritional yeast, all of whom add to the flavour palette.
Healthy fats come in in the form of chicken oil, linseed, fish oil, etc., all of which are a source of heart healthy essential fatty acids. The balance of fatty acids has a cardioprotective effect, without contributing too much to the calorie column. L Carnitine present in the food also boosts protein activation, and helps in building and maintaining lean body mass.
But in addition to all these, there are also active counters against the skeletal aging process, with joint boosters like glucosamine, MSM, chondroitin sulphate, and nucleotides. These help maintain the cartilage within joints and slow the onset of degenerative diseases like arthritis, which often plague older dogs.
Senior dogs also experience chronic constipation, which can worsen pre-existing irritable bowel syndrome, or complicate existing food sensitivities. The added fibre in the recipe helps regulate dog’s bowel movements, but the biggest benefit comes from added prebiotics.
Added prebiotics help cultivate a healthy internal atmosphere and intestinal flora in your dog’s gut. The result is good, clean digestion and a painless experience. Even with limited mobility, your dog will not suffer constipation because of his food ever again.
Arden Grange Senior dog food is optimized for ideal nutrition for senior dogs. Their formulations are backed by extensive research, to make sure that their canine connoisseurs receive balanced, low calorie and nutrient rich nutrition, to help preserve their vitality and happiness. This is without a doubt the best senior dog food overall.
Autarky Mature Light Senior dog food is on this list with the double benefit of being a light food for senior dogs, but also a hypoallergenic one.
A truly complete dog food, Autarky Hypoallergenic Mature Light dog food provides a grain free, irritant free formulation for older dogs who are still young at heart – which is all of them. It’s a source of balanced nutrition that does not compromise on flavor or content, but definitely cuts back on unnecessary calories in the mix.
The recipe comes boosted with all-natural goodness, and extra natural antioxidants which help fight aging and degeneration. The ingredients are all locally sourced and completely additive free, which only adds to its health quotient.
Autarky Hypoallergenic dog food has a significant protein content, with a hefty chicken portion providing high quality lean protein, with all the essential amino acids. This not only helps in repair and maintenance, but also actively contributes to boosting your dog’s metabolism. Chicken is also easy to digest, which dogs with sensitive stomachs will definitely appreciate.
There are plenty of vegetables in the bowl, some adding flavour and texture, and some for their nutrient packed contribution. Vegetables like dried beets, carrots, spinach, alfalfa, peas, blackcurrant, kale, beetroot, not only act as a source of fibre and naturally added nutrients, but elevate the dish thoroughly.
Added herbs make this a gourmet dining experience for your dog, with rosemary, rosehip, seaweed, thyme, peppermint, fennel, paprika, turmeric, dandelion, fenugreek, oregano, aloe, yeast, and yucca extract. These make for full bodied flavour and simple deliciousness for your poochs picky palate.
But the goodies packed in here and not to be underestimated, either. While linseed and chicken oil provide taste and healthy fats, another great energy source in this recipe is rice.
Rice provides a modicum of complex carbohydrates, enough to make sure that your pooch meets his metabolic demands, but also keeping the recipe light. Older dogs do not burn as many calories as younger dogs, and recipes that don’t scale carbs back end up overfeeding dogs.
Rice is also a thoroughly hypoallergenic additive. Unlike wheat, corn, etc. the carbohydrate contribution from rice does not come with an irritated intestinal lining. Rice is mild and does not disturb dogs’ digestions, even when they are sensitive to grain containing dog foods.
But the added vitamins and minerals really elevate Autarky Hypoallergenic dog food to being one of the best senior light dog foods. Added vitamins A, D, E, L Carnitine, and Taurine ensure that joint repair and skin, teeth, and nails are maintained in top function. They also contribute to improved immunity, and better metabolic rate.
Iron, Calcium, Zinc, Manganese, Sodium, etc. are also present in recommended amounts. These are essential building blocks of the body’s normal function, without which your dog would end up suffering from deficiencies. This, with the prebiotics and natural fibres that boost dogs’ intestinal health, go a long way in maintaining their overall wellbeing.
Autarky hypoallergenic senior dog food elevates mealtimes to full nutritional experiences, something every senior dog can really profit from.
The first wet food and the second option from Lily’s Kitchen, this specialized wet dog food is one of the best grain free senior dog food options for pooches with picky palates.
A lot of dogs have trouble with kibble as they get older. Yet others refuse to settle on dry food altogether. But their nutritional requirements change with age, and options like Lily’s Kitchen Senior Complete Wet dog food ensure that your pooch always has all bases covered.
Lily’s Kitchen Senior Complete dog food is an extremely well researched and closely tailored formulation, designed to suit the needs of older dogs, while still being a delicious full meal. It brings together a grain free recipe with fresh meat, vegetables, and is well fortified with all the vitamins and minerals your canine companion requires, in the right ratios.
The emphasis this family business lays on using ‘real meat’ shows in this hearty composition of 60% freshly prepared turkey, combined with fresh seasonal vegetables, including carrots, sugar snap peas, cranberries, parsnips, and added green lipped mussels, seaweed, salmon oil, etc. for rounding out the RDAs. So, there’s added flavour, and added natural vitamin E and healthy fats.
The naturally rich sources of vitamins, minerals, and fibre are boosted with added nutrients, which ensure that your dog gets his required daily allowance every day. The turkey heavy recipe means that your dog’s system is not overloaded with empty calories from carbohydrates, which can be detrimental in older age.
Additionally, turkey is one of the mildest and blandest sources of lean protein there is. Dogs can digest it with ease, and it covers all their requirements of essential amino acids, ensuring good muscle and tissue maintenance and repair. It’s not only a good source of energy, but also goes easy on digestive tracts that have slowed with age.
The recipe also includes added botanicals and herbs, which make the mix flavourful and appealing, and add a healthy amount of fibre to it. These include rosemary, goldenrod, aniseed, celery seed, milk thistle, rosehips, nettle, marigold petals, cleavers, seaweed, alfalfa, dandelion root, and burdock root. Most of these are well known for their immunity boosting properties as well.
The added vitamins match your dog’s daily requirements of vitamin D, which ensures good calcium absorption and maintenance of the skin and skeletal system. Minerals like zinc, selenium, calcium, iodine, copper, manganese, etc. help in maintaining normal body function, giving your dog a shiny, full coat, strong teeth and bones, better joint support, and healthy skin and nails.
All of these, with added natural antioxidant sources, give your dog a delicious, balanced, nutritious, high protein and low carbohydrate meal served practically farm to table. Lily’s Kitchen Senior Complete wet dog food is really one of the most well-rounded dog foods anyone can buy for their furry best friends.
A dog food that is truly all natural, Naturediet Nutritious Complete Senior Food is an option that lets you minimize exposing your older dogs to anything that isn’t pure green goodness.
The recipe is designed with older and senior dogs in mind but is also highly suited for dogs who need to be fed a completely wheat and gluten free diet, or a calorie restricted diet. As it is, older dogs tend to pile weight on quickly, and boredom eating also accelerates the onset of obesity and related health problems.
But senior dog foods like Naturediet ‘Feel Good!’ Complete dog food tackles all these issues, and then some. This particular recipe, made wholly in Great Britain, combines a limited ingredient diet with sufficient nutrient enrichment to give your dog a food that takes care of his requirements- and finicky tastes.
The carefully balanced recipe brings together self-attested responsibly sourced ingredients with a mild, gentle steaming process that leaves the food cooked and combined, but not turned into unrecognizable mush. The result is a meal full of flavours and textures and packed with all the nutrients that your dog needs.
It includes lean protein sourced from turkey and chicken, both making up 28% each, so that each feed provides a protein heavy portion for your dogs. The high protein content supplies all the amino acids needed but cuts out all the unhealthy fats that make their way in with red meats like beef or mutton. Also, lean chicken and turkey are far easier to digest and gentler on doggy stomachs.
The meat meal is processed enough to make sure it is thoroughly cooked, and then combined with carrots and potatoes, for added vitamin A and C, and lots of flavour. The crunchy carrots and soft potatoes are mixed with rice, which serves as a source of complex carbohydrates, but only 10% of the mix. This provides enough carbs so that your dog receives some, but not too many.
Also, rice is one of the mildest carbohydrate sources, and does not irritate the intestinal lining in dogs the way cereal and cereal derivative fille products do. This prevents older dogs from developing digestive distress and helps soothe inflamed intestinal linings in dogs who can’t tolerate cereal based foods anymore.
Natural ground bone and seaweed up the vitamin and mineral content, as well as enhance the taste. There’s also added vitamin A and D, and minerals like Selenium, zinc, iodine, copper, iron, manganese, etc. all required for essential body processes. The entire mix is completely free of artificial preservatives, colours, or flavourings, and has no added sugars either.
Naturediet Feel Good Complete dog food is one of the best limited calorie food sources for senior dogs who don’t have high calorie requirements or need to lose weight. It helps restrict their calories without compromising on their nutrition, and is a dog food that is as good as it gets.
Not far behind is Supadog Burgess Senior/Mature British Chicken dog food, designed expressly as a source of complete nutrition for mature and senior dogs. Made in Yorkshire by British family owned company, this pet favourite puts together a puptacular flavour combination, with chicken in the starring role.
Made to be suitable for all dog breeds, the Supadog Burgess Senior/Mature Complete dog food lays emphasis on three fronts of defense: joint health, fur and skin maintenance, and easy, fuss-free digestion. The recipe blends chicken meal with chicken liver, augmented flavour from poultry fat, and added fishmeal.
These make up a solid protein source per meal for your dog, that ensures that his quota of essential amino acids is matched, without overloading him on a high protein diet.
These are then incorporated with wheat, maize, peas, beet pulp, wheat meal, linseed, soya hulls, and Brewer’s Yeast, which cover your dog’s carbohydrate and essential fatty acid requirements. Soya hulls, peas, and oat feed also add a modicum of vegetable protein to the mix.
Added to this are Glucosamine, Dicalcium phosphate, salt, limestone, herbs, yucca extract, and fructooligosaccharides, all of which boost the mineral value of each serving.
The added yucca extract and fibre from vegetables also helps boost the fibre content of the food, which helps your dogs’ intestines regulate their movements better. It also helps dogs who have chronic constipation or very limited mobility.
Vitamins like A, D, E, and Biotin regulate essential body functions, like calcium absorption, maintenance of skin and nails, immune system function, etc. and minerals like iodine, zinc, selenium, iron, copper, and manganese are required for multiple enzymatic processes in the body.
All these ingredients come together to provide your pooch with a mild, nutrient dense food that is a treat for him each time you put the bowl down. It provides excellent joint protection and antioxidants that help slow the natural ageing process. For a senior pooch who could use a little boost, Supadog Burgess Senior/Mature dog food is a great option.
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