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The 11 Best Dog Foods To Avoid Dcm

DCM is an abbreviation for dilated cardiomyopathy. DCM indicates that a dog's heart muscle is enlarged and weaker, perhaps causing valves to leak. This eventually leads to congestive heart failure. In 2018, the FDA said that it was looking into complaints of DCM in dogs that ate particular meals, many of which were grain-free and had a high percentage of legumes. As a result, dog owners have begun to provide their pets with grain-free diets. However, this is not an option for dogs that are allergic to grain, so always consult your veterinarian before making any changes to your dog's diet. If you're thinking of switching to a new meal for your dog, here are the best dog foods to avoid DCM. Look through BestForPets (bestforpets.org) evaluations to discover if there is one that will work well for your dog right now. When you've found one you like, talk to your vet about including it in your dog's diet.

Choosing the Best Dog Foods to Avoid DCM is a Buyer's Guide.

You may have heard about dogs having dilated cardiomyopathy, or DCM, after consuming grain-free diets, and you’re now seeking for a meal that doesn’t contain legumes or potatoes. The study of a grain-free diet and DCM began in 2018. Over 500 dogs have been diagnosed with DCM between July 2018 and March 2019. DCM is the most prevalent cause of heart failure in dogs, and there is no treatment.

If you’re unclear what to do, especially if you’ve been giving your dog a grain-free diet with beans, contact your veterinarian to collaborate on finding the healthiest food for your dog. If your dog is allergic to grains, grain-free may be your only alternative. In this situation, we propose that you have a look at the first option on this list. It is grain-free but lacks legumes.

Here are a few more suggestions for choosing a dog food to avoid DCM.


Some DCM instances were caused by a taurine deficiency in the dog’s diet. Taurine is a necessary amino acid present in animal protein. It was established in the mid-1990s that supplementing taurine to a dog’s food if they were taurine deficient might greatly enhance heart function.

To avoid taurine deficit in your dog, serve them a diet high in fresh meat, especially organs such as hearts, livers, kidneys, and lungs. Taurine is also found in protein sources such as chicken and fish. Hooved animals, such as cattle, lamb, and goat, have lower levels. Look for the taurine content on the box label and ask your vet what your dog’s daily taurine need is.

There are no legumes.

Grain-free diets rely heavily on legumes and potatoes for plant-based protein. Manufacturers may also use less whole beef in their recipes, saving money. This is why foods without beans are more costly. The good news is that there is a legume-free cuisine for any budget.

Things to stay away from:

  • Peas or pea products, such as pea protein
  • Lentils
  • Chickpeas
  • Beans
  • Peanuts
  • Alfalfa
  • Potatoes
  • Yummy sweet potatoes


For a long time, a grain-free diet was promoted as healthier than one that included grains. Grain was thought to cause allergies in dogs. While this is true in certain circumstances, allergies to the protein source in dog food are more frequent. For example, you may believe your dog is allergic to grain when they are actually allergic to chicken.

Your veterinarian may recommend a bland diet for a bit and then gradually reintroduce foods to identify the problem. If your dog is not sensitive to grains, you may provide them a grain-free diet that will enhance their health. If you have any questions, contact your veterinarian.

DCM is not a foregone conclusion if you’ve been giving your dog a grain-free diet for years. The most essential thing is to ensure that your dog gets adequate taurine.

If you want to move to a grain-free diet without legumes, this list contains some wonderful alternatives for you to consider.


The Farmer’s Dog Chicken Recipe is the best overall dog diet to avoid DCM. This is a subscription dog food service that delivers fresh, natural ingredients to your home. Evanger’s Super Premium Dry Dog Food incorporates probiotics and prebiotics in the mix and comes in a large bag size for a good value. Annamaet Original Option Dry Dog Food, a high-protein, low-fat food with probiotics and prebiotics, is our top recommendation. Dr. Gary’s Best Breed Holistic Dry Puppy Food contains glucosamine and is developed for puppy growth. Finally, Farmina N&D Ancestral Grain Mini Breed Dry Dog Food is designed for tiny breeds and will not cause blood sugar spikes.

BestForPets (bestforpets.org) hopes these evaluations have assisted you in deciding on the best dog foods to avoid DCM. Before modifying your dog’s food, make contact with your veterinarian.


Evanger’s Extra Special Dry Dog Food

  • Chicken, chicken meal, brown rice, chicken fat, and oats are the main components.
  • 26% protein content
  • 15% fat content
  • Calories per cup: 406

Evanger’s Super Premium Dry Dog Food is the finest dog food to avoid DCM for the money because it contains no artificial additives or preservatives. Depending on how much you need at a time to match your dog’s size and age, you may get a 4.4-, 16.5-, or 33-pound bag.

This meal is comprehensive and balanced for dogs of all life stages, fulfilling AAFCO criteria. The first component is real chicken. Prebiotics and probiotics both act to improve digestion. Carrots, cranberries, parsley, blueberries, and oats are high in antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals.

The kibbles are tiny, around the size of huge peas. The diet is appropriate for all breeds, however giant dogs may prefer a larger kibble.


  • For the money, a large bag
  • Prebiotics and probiotics are included.
  • There are no artificial components.


  • Kibble size is little.
  • stale odor

Original Option by Annamaet Food for Dry Dogs

  • Salmon meal, brown rice, millet, rolled oats, and lamb meal are the main components.
  • 24% protein content
  • 13% fat content
  • Calories per cup: 406

Annamaet’s Original Option Dry dog food is not only a good way to avoid DCM, but it’s also great for dogs that are allergic to poultry. The protein component of this food is made up of salmon, lamb, and fish meal, providing your dog with a high-protein, low-fat food.

Cranberries, blueberries, and apples are high in vitamins and minerals. This meal also contains prebiotics and probiotics, which are beneficial to gut health.

This whole-grain mix contains omega fatty acids, which are beneficial to the skin, coat, and brain. The chelated compounds in the formula aid in the absorption of minerals that are essential for immune system function. The diet contains L-carnitine, which helps to digest fat and support healthy muscle building.

The kibble size has lately increased and is now considerably larger than it was previously. It’s now too big for several little dogs that used to eat this meal.


  • Low fat and high protein
  • Prebiotics and probiotics should be included.
  • Omega-3 fatty acids are beneficial to the skin, coat, and brain.


  • Kibble has grown in size.
  • Expensive

Dr. Gary’s Holistic Best Breed Dry Puppy Food

  • Chicken meal, brown rice, oatmeal, dried beet pulp, and chicken fat are the main components.
  • 25% protein content
  • 13% fat content
  • 466 calories per cup

Dr. Gary’s Best Breed Holistic Dry Puppy Food contains protein from chicken and menhaden fish. Ingredients high in antioxidants combine with glucosamine and necessary fatty acids to promote healthy puppy growth and joint function. The inclusion of EPA and DHA benefits the brain and neurological system.

This well-balanced diet has the right proportions of protein, fat, and carbohydrates to keep pups active and developing strong. Because the food contains oatmeal and flaxseed, it is friendly on pups’ sensitive tummies. Puppies of all sizes can eat this meal.

Because chicken is the first ingredient in this dish, it is not suitable for dogs that are allergic to poultry. This is a healthy choice to avoid DCM if your dog is not sensitive to chicken and can handle grain.


  • Complete and balanced puppy development food
  • Easy on the digestive system
  • Glucosamine is included for healthy joint growth.


  • Not suited for dogs who are allergic to poultry.

N&D Ancestral Grain Mini Breed Dry Dog Food Farmina

  • Lamb, dehydrated lamb, whole spelt, whole oats, dry whole eggs are the main components.
  • 28% protein content
  • 18% fat content
  • 395 calories per cup

Farmina N&D Ancestral Grain Mini Breed Dry Dog Food is ideal for little or mini breed dogs. This low-glycemic, low-carb dish may also be appropriate for diabetic pets. Before making any modifications to your dog’s food, consult with your veterinarian.

Because it has no beans but yet provides quality nutrition, this diet can help dogs prevent DCM. 60% animal products, 20% organic spelt and oats, and 20% fruits, vegetables, vitamins, and minerals make up the mix. The formula has no GMOs.

Omega fatty acids support skin and coat health, while antioxidants from pomegranates and berries assist your dog’s body combat free radicals.

The kibble is small and not suitable for big dogs.


  • A low-glycemic dish will not cause a blood sugar increase.
  • Omega fatty acids and antioxidants are present.
  • Low-fat, high-protein recipe


  • Small kibble sizes may not be appropriate for big breeds.

Dry Dog Food Dr. Tim’s Heirloom Ancient Grains

  • Pollock, salmon meal, millet, quinoa, and spelt are the main components.
  • 32% protein content
  • 18% fat content
  • 409 calories per cup

Dr. Tim’s Heirloom Ancient Grains Dry Dog Food contains a high protein level from fish, eggs, and pork. This nutritious formula is designed for sedentary to moderately active dogs, and it works with the metabolisms of dogs who live a more relaxed lifestyle.

For nutritional support, ancient, unaltered grains such as spelt and millet are included. With the inclusion of BC30 probiotic assistance, the mix enhances digestive and immune system health.

Omega fatty acids, EPA, and DHA promote brain health and mental clarity while also maintaining coats in good condition.

A Ph.D. canine nutritionist and a small animal veterinarian created the recipe for this meal. This meal contains no chicken, making it an excellent choice for dogs that are allergic to poultry.


  • Developed by a veterinarian and a canine nutritionist
  • For dogs with food sensitivity, avoid using poultry.
  • Helps inactive to moderately active dogs’ metabolisms.


  • Expensive

Dry Dog Food by FirstMate

  • Lamb meal, oatmeal, brown rice, chicken fat, and tomato pomace are the main components.
  • 25% protein content
  • 10% fat content
  • 489 calories per cup

FirstMate Dry Dog Food’s gluten-free and low-glycemic mix is an excellent alternative that won’t cause blood sugar spikes. There are no peas, potatoes, or wheat in the cuisine. 70% of the protein in this dish comes from free-range Australian lamb.

The other 30% consists of fruits and grains such as blueberries, cranberries, oats, and brown rice. Your dog can eat a low-carb food while still obtaining enough vitamins and minerals.

While chicken fat is utilized in the dish, no chicken protein is present. This will help minimize the likelihood of poultry allergies and sensitivities, but it will not eradicate them. Some dogs with poultry allergies can consume this food without incident.


  • Australian lamb protein produced from free-range animals
  • Fruits include vitamins and minerals.
  • There will be no chicken protein for dogs that are allergic to poultry.


  • There is still chicken fat.
  • Some dogs dislike the flavor.
  • There are no probiotics added.

Large Breed Dry Dog Food by Blackwood

  • Whitefish meal, oatmeal, brown rice, pearled barley, and ground grain sorghum are the main components.
  • 24% protein content
  • 12% fat content
  • 375 calories per cup

The majority of the protein in Blackwood Large Breed Dry Dog Food comes from whitefish, which provides energy and promotes strong muscles in your dog.

For healthy, easy digestion, this legume-free dish incorporates oats and probiotics. Small quantities of food are prepared to seal in taste and nutrients for general health and fitness.

This food contains no artificial colors or flavors. Although the protein concentration is lower than that of some of the other items on this list, the fat content is similarly modest. The kibble size is designed for huge and gigantic breed dogs. Small or micro breeds may have difficulty chewing this meal.


  • Probiotics are present.
  • The first component is fresh whitefish.
  • For the finest flavor, cook in small amounts.


  • Kibble is too big for little dogs.
  • Protein deficient

Author Image

Dr. Deborah Fletcher

Deborah R. Fletcher, DVM, is a skilled veterinarian with more than 15 years of experience dealing with companion and exotic animals. She has experience caring for a variety of animals, including household cats and dogs, reptiles, birds of prey, and even primates. Dr. Fletcher is a valuable part of the BestForPets team, where she contributes to their aim of providing pets and their owners with the finest possible treatment and services.

Veterinarian (DVM) Dr. Deborah Fletcher


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