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The 7 Best Low-Calorie Dog Treats In 2024

Low-calorie dog treats serve as both a training tool to reward your dog's positive behavior and a thoughtful gesture of kindness. It's important to remember that these treats contribute to your daily calorie intake.

Prevent canine obesity by providing a balanced diet that excludes unhealthy food and includes these beneficial low-calorie treats. Look for nutritious and low-calorie snacks, as well as ones that are appropriate for your dog's age and size.

Based on feedback from pet owners like you, BestForPets (bestforpets.org) has selected the best low-calorie dog treat.

icon Vet Approved
icon Reviewed & Fact - Checked by

Deborah R. Fletcher (DVM)

Veterinarian

The information provided is current and up-to-date, in line with the latest research conducted in the field of veterinary medicine.

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1 Wellness CORE Power Packed Venison Grain-Free Jerky Dog Treats Wellness CORE Power Packed Venison Grain-Free Jerky Dog Treats View on Amazon
2 Blue Buffalo Blue Bits Tender Beef Recipe Soft-Moist Training Dog Treats Blue Buffalo Blue Bits Tender Beef Recipe Soft-Moist Training Dog Treats View on Amazon
3 Stewart Pro-Treat Beef Liver Freeze-Dried Raw Dog Treats Stewart Pro-Treat Beef Liver Freeze-Dried Raw Dog Treats View on Amazon
4 Wellness Grain-Free Lamb & Salmon Wellness Grain-Free Lamb & Salmon View on Amazon
5 Merrick Power Bites Real Texas Beef Recipe Merrick Power Bites Real Texas Beef Recipe View on Amazon
6 Wholesomes Lite Biscuit with Lamb Meal Wholesomes Lite Biscuit with Lamb Meal View on Amazon
7 Hill's Natural Baked Light Biscuits with Real Chicken Hill's Natural Baked Light Biscuits with Real Chicken View on Amazon

Reviews

1. Wellness CORE Venison Jerky Dog Treats

Wellness CORE Pure Rewards, Grain-Free Tender Jerky Treats

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  • 4 ounce package size
  • Adult life stage
  • Grain-free, wheat-free, and soy-free diet

The Wellness CORE Power Packed Venison Grain-Free Jerky Dog Treats are an excellent low-calorie option for dogs.

They are made with genuine venison and contain no artificial colors or flavors, making them an excellent source of protein for dogs.

Moreover, they contain over 80 percent fresh, genuine beef and venison, making them an excellent source of protein for building and maintaining muscle.

In addition, these treats contain probiotics and fiber to aid in digestive health. These treats stand out with their minimal use of natural ingredients, which prioritize high-quality proteins.

Following the nutritional principle that dogs thrive on a diet primarily composed of meat, these treats are optimal for dogs of all sizes, ages, and activity levels.

These features make the Wellness CORE Power Packed Venison Grain-Free Jerky Dog Treats an excellent choice for pet owners who want to provide their furry companions with a healthy, flavorful snack.

Furthermore, they are manufactured in the United States with the finest ingredients sourced from around the world, ensuring their quality and safety.

Overall, the Wellness CORE Power Packed Venison Grain-Free Jerky Dog Treats are likely to be a hit with your furry companion due to their delicious flavor, satisfying texture, and numerous health benefits.

Pros

Each one has just 5 calories.

High protein content

Made in the United States

Cons

Expensive

Small


2. Blue Buffalo Soft-Moist Training Dog Treats

Blue Buffalo BLUE Bits Natural Soft-Moist Training Dog Treats Beef Recipe 16-oz bag

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  • 4 ounce package size
  • Adult life stage
  • Wheat and soy are off limits.

Blue Buffalo Blue Bits Tender Beef Recipe Soft-Moist Training Dog Treats are an inexpensive dog treat option that is low in calories.

The primary ingredient in these treats is genuine beef, which gives them a delectable flavor that dogs adore. They are ideal for training, rewards, and showing your canine companion affection.

Each treat contains four calories and is enriched with omega fatty acids, which promote healthy skin and coat. These treats are produced in the United States and contain no artificial colors or flavors.

The treats are intended for mature canines, but the small bites are also appropriate for puppies. These treats are distinguished by their healthy ingredients.

The absence of common allergens for dogs like chicken and poultry by-product meals, maize, wheat, and soy makes these treats a healthier choice. They are also free from artificial preservatives like propylene glycol and colors like red dye 40.

Blue Buffalo Blue Bits Tender Beef Recipe Soft-Moist Training Dog Treats are an excellent option for dog owners who wish to reward their canines with a healthy, low-calorie, artificial-ingredient-free treat.

With their succulent flavor and tender texture, these treats are certain to please your furry companion.

However, it is important to take your pet’s taste preferences into account before purchasing them, as not all dogs may enjoy these treats.

Pros

4 calories per

The omega-3 fatty acids

The first component is beef.

Cons

Some dogs dislike them.


3. Stewart Freeze-Dried Raw Dog Treats

Stewart Freeze Dried Dog Treats

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  • Sizes: 2 oz, 4 oz, 12 oz, 14 oz, 21 oz
  • Adult life stage
  • Dietary restriction: freeze-dried raw

The high-quality, single-ingredient Stewart Pro-Treat Beef Liver Freeze-Dried Raw Dog Treats are ideal for dogs with food allergies.

Made from 100% pure beef liver that has been freeze-dried to preserve its flavor and nutrients, locking in the natural goodness of the liver and making it an excellent source of protein, vitamins, and minerals, these treats are a nutritious and delicious option for dogs of all sizes and ages.

These freeze-dried liver treats are packed with high-quality protein, essential vitamins, and minerals that support strong muscles, promote healthy eyesight, and help maintain overall health and vitality with only four calories per treat.

They are grain-free and contain no artificial additives or preservatives, which means they are easier to digest and less likely to cause digestive upset, skin allergies, or other health issues that can arise from consuming processed foods.

This makes them a natural and healthy option for pet owners who want to provide their beloved companions with the best possible nutrition.

These treats are made in the United States in a USDA-inspected facility with rigorous quality control standards, ensuring that they are made with the highest quality ingredients and meet strict safety and sanitation standards.

They are packaged in a convenient resealable tub, making them ideal for training or as a nutritious on-the-go snack.

While most dogs enjoy these treats, some pet owners noted that they may be too hard for smaller or senior dogs to chew and swallow.

To prevent choking or dental issues, consider breaking them into smaller pieces or soaking them in water before feeding. Additionally, the container size may vary slightly due to settling of the product during packing.

In conclusion, Stewart Pro-Treat Beef Liver Freeze-Dried Raw Dog Treats are a protein-rich, high-quality food that is ideal for dogs with food allergies.

They are made from a single natural ingredient and contain no artificial additives or preservatives, making them a nutritious and healthy option for pet owners who want to provide the best possible care for their beloved companions.

Pros

High protein content

Freeze-dried

Single-ingredient

Cons

Large servings may be too much for little dogs.

Too difficult; may not be suitable for dogs with dental difficulties.


4. Wellness Lamb & Salmon Soft Puppy Bites

Wellness Soft Puppy Bites Natural Grain-Free Treats for Training

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  • 3 oz and 8 oz package sizes
  • Puppy period of life
  • Grain-free, wheat-free, and soy-free diet

If you are looking for a tasty and nutritious treat for your puppy, the Wellness Grain-Free Lamb & Salmon Soft Puppy Bites Recipe Dog Treats are a great option.

These bite-sized treats are specially formulated for puppies under one year old and made with high-quality animal protein, fruits, and vegetables for optimal health.

The treats are made in the United States and are free from animal byproducts, wheat, soy, dairy, and artificial colors and flavors.

Moreover, although these treats strive to use healthy and natural ingredients, some reviewers have reported digestive issues in their dogs after consuming them.

It is recommended to monitor your puppy’s reaction to the treats and consult with your veterinarian if there are any concerns.

The treats are enriched with DHA and omega-3 fatty acids, which are crucial for cognitive development, skin health, and coat luster.

They are made with whole fruits and vegetables, including nutrients such as blueberries and sweet potatoes, to impart a naturally delectable flavor and an antioxidant boost.

The range of all-natural formulas accommodates canines of all ages, breeds, and preferences, from crispy to chewy, grain-based to grain-free, and more.

Grain-Free Lamb & Salmon Soft Puppy Bites Recipe Dog Treats are the ideal reward whether training your puppy or simply wanting to demonstrate appreciation for their positive behavior.

In conclusion, give your canine companion a treat they’ll enjoy and appreciate with the Wellness Grain-Free Lamb & Salmon Soft Puppy Bites Recipe Dog Treats.

Pros

For puppies, bite-sized

Sources of animal protein

DHA and omega-3 fatty acids

Cons

Some dogs dislike them, making them unsuitable for fussy eaters.

This product may induce gastrointestinal distress.


5. Grain-Free Soft & Chewy Dog Treats by Merrick

Merrick Power Bites Dog Treats, Real Beef Recipe - 6 oz. Bag

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  • 6 ounce package size
  • Adult life stage
  • Grain-free, no chicken, no wheat, no soy diet

If you’re looking for a high-protein, nutritious, and tasty treat for your active canine, Merrick Power Bites Real Texas Beef Recipe Grain-Free Soft & Chewy Dog Snacks are an excellent choice.

Made with genuine beef as the primary ingredient, these treats aid in the development and maintenance of healthy muscle tissue and energy levels.

In addition to their high protein content, Merrick Power Bites Dog Treats are also nutritious and contain omega fatty acids that promote healthy skin and coat.

With only about 5 calories per treat, they are ideal for canines who need a low-calorie snack.

Merrick’s dog treats are free from artificial colors, flavors, and preservatives, as well as gluten, soy, and wheat, making these grain-free treats an excellent option for canines with chicken allergies.

All products are made in compliance with FDA regulations in the United States, giving dog owners peace of mind.

These beefy delights are also available in rabbit, chicken, and salmon flavors to accommodate canines with different flavor preferences. Despite some negative reviews, many dogs enjoy the taste and texture of these treats.

The plush and chewy Merrick Power Bites Dog Treats, Real Beef Recipe, are ideal for rewarding or training your furry companion with a delicious and nutritious snack. Give your dog a treat they will appreciate and enjoy!

Pros

3 calories per

The first component is beef.

Additional protein choices

Cons

Some dogs dislike them.


6. Dog Treats Wholesomes Lite Biscuit with Lamb Meal

SPORTMiX Wholesomes Gourmet Rewards Lite Bites Dog Biscuits

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  • Package weight: 20 lb, 3 oz
  • Adult life stage
  • Dietary restriction: low calorie

Wholesomes Lite Biscuit with Lamb Meal Dog Treats are a great option for dog owners looking for low-calorie, protein-rich snacks to train and reward their furry friends.

These treats contain lamb meal, a highly digestible and nutrient-dense protein source that dogs love. The crunchy texture of the treats satisfies their chewing needs, making them ideal for training and rewarding.

In addition to being nutritious, each treat is fortified with essential vitamins and minerals that promote overall canine health. These nutrients support muscle growth, bone and tooth health, and a shiny coat.

Wholesomes treats are made in the United States using only premium ingredients, with high-quality lamb protein being a standout feature.

However, it’s important to note that these treats contain chicken fat, which may not be suitable for dogs with chicken allergies.

Although some reviewers have noted that the treats are too hard for their dogs, the absence of peas in the recipe makes them a great option for canines with sensitive stomachs.

In summary, Wholesomes Lite Biscuit with Lamb Meal Dog Treats are a nutritious and delicious snack suitable for dogs of all ages.

These low-calorie, protein-rich treats are made with high-quality lamb protein and fortified with essential vitamins and minerals to support overall canine health.

Pros

Dinner with lamb

Vitamin and mineral supplement

Made in the United States

Cons

Too difficult

Contains chicken fat


7. Dog Treats Hill’s Natural Baked Light Biscuits

Hill's Natural Baked Light Dog Biscuits with Real Chicken for Small Dogs

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  • 8 ounce package size
  • Adult life stage
  • Weight-controlling diet

Hill's Natural Baked Light Biscuits with Real Chicken Dog Snacks are a delicious and nutritious treat specially formulated to help dogs maintain a healthy weight.

They are made with real chicken, which is an excellent source of protein for dogs of all ages. Protein is important for maintaining muscle mass and supporting overall health.

Although these snacks are marketed for weight control, it’s important to note that they have a higher calorie content compared to some other low-calorie dog treats.

For example, the small cookies have a calorie count of 8.1, while the larger ones have 34 calories per piece. It’s recommended to follow the recommended calorie intake for your dog’s size and activity level to ensure they maintain a healthy weight.

Some reviewers have mentioned that their dogs did not enjoy the flavor of these biscuits, so it’s essential to consider your dog’s taste preferences before purchasing them.

Overall, Hill’s Natural Baked Light Biscuits with Real Chicken Dog Snacks can be a great addition to your dog’s diet if they enjoy the taste and you use them in moderation.

It’s important to use them as part of a balanced diet and exercise routine.

Before introducing any new treats or food into your dog’s diet, it’s important to consult with your veterinarian to ensure they are safe and appropriate for your dog’s individual needs.

Regular check-ups and seeking advice from experts can help maintain your dog’s health and well-being.

Pros

The first component is real chicken.

Weight management

There are no artificial colors or tastes.

Cons

Some dogs dislike them.

Buying the Best Low-Calorie Dog Treats: A Buyer's Guide

Ingredients, your dog’s size and life stage, and other factors determine which low-calorie dog treat is best for your pet.

1. Ingredients

Dogs can meet their energy needs with treats that are low in calories and high in high-quality protein derived from animals. It is best to avoid treats that contain additives such as synthetic colors, flavors, and preservatives.

2. Texture

Different treat textures have advantages. Some dogs love the crunchiness of hard treats, while others prefer soft chews. For dogs with dental problems or missing teeth, it is best to avoid hard treats that may cause discomfort.

3. Size

You can select snacks for small, medium, big, and enormous breeds. Consider your dog’s size when choosing a treat, as feeding a miniature breed a low-calorie treat designed for large breeds will increase its caloric intake.

Smaller portions are recommended for sizable treats for your dog. Your dog generally can’t tell the difference between a large and a small reward, so cutting them up into small pieces means more goodies for them!

4. Calories

A good guideline for low-calorie dog treats is to have around 20 calories. It’s essential to remember that even low-calorie foods can quickly add up if you overfeed. Limit treats to 10 percent or less of your dog’s daily caloric intake.

5. Life Stage

When choosing a low-calorie treat for your dog, it is essential to consider its age. Be sure to choose a treat that is appropriate for your dog’s age, as puppies, mature dogs, and senior dogs have distinct nutritional needs.

6. Allergies or Nutritional Restrictions

When selecting treats for a dog with food allergies or dietary restrictions, it is crucial to choose a low-calorie option that meets their needs.

When selecting products for dogs with dietary restrictions, it’s essential to choose those that are free of common allergens like wheat, corn, and soy, or that have been specially created for their needs.

7. Purpose

It’s crucial to think about the intended function of a treat before choosing one. Before selecting a treat, ask yourself if you need one for training, dental health, or to keep your dog occupied.

Choose a treat based on your dog’s needs, preferences, and requirements.

FAQs

1. What is the lowest calorie treat for dogs?

Carrot sticks, cucumber slices, zucchini slices, apple slices (without seeds), cooked lean meats, small pieces of baked potato or baked sweet potato (no unripe potatoes or potato plants), bananas, unsalted almonds, plain cooked pasta, broccoli, tomato, pumpkin, and blueberries are all additional low-calorie treats for dogs.

2. How many calories should a dog treat be?

Treats should account for no more than 10 percent of your dog’s daily caloric intake. For instance, if your dog requires 400 calories per day (see the resting rate calorie calculator below), they should consume no more than 40 calories from treats, while the remaining 360 calories should come from their regular diet.

3. What burns the most calories for dogs?

Running is the most effective way to burn calories. Dogs enjoy running alongside their humans, but if you don’t run, there are other options.

4. Does chewing less absorb less calories?

Preliminary research suggests that chewing until “no lumps remain” may enhance the number of calories burned during digestion by approximately 10 calories per 300-calorie meal. However, more research is needed to confirm this finding.

5. Can low-calorie dog treats still be palatable?

Yes, low-calorie dog treats can still be delicious. Prioritize treats that do not contain artificial flavors, colors, and preservatives. Choose treats made with high-quality protein sources rather than those with synthetic ingredients.

6. Are low-calorie homemade dog treats a viable option?

Homemade low-calorie dog treats can be a viable option if they are nutritionally balanced and made with high-quality ingredients.

It’s important to seek advice from a veterinarian or pet nutritionist when preparing homemade treats for your dog to ensure they meet their nutritional needs and are safe for consumption.

7. Should I avoid any particular ingredients when selecting low-calorie dog treats?

Yes. It is advisable to avoid treats that contain additives like maize, wheat, and soy, and prioritize those that are free from artificial flavors, colors, and preservatives.

Choose treats made with high-quality protein sources for your dog’s overall well-being.

Conclusion

Low-calorie dog treats are a great way to reward your dog without adding too many calories, which can contribute to obesity and other health problems.

The BestForPets (bestforpets.org) recommendation for the best low-calorie dog treats is the Wellness CORE Power Packed Venison Grain-Free Dog Treats .

Blue Buffalo Blue Bits Tender Beef Recipe Soft-Moist Training Dog Treats are the most affordable low-calorie dog treats.

Stewart Pro-Treat Raw , freeze-dried beef liver for dogs is a high-protein, low-calorie dog treat.

Author Image

Dr. Barry Buttler

Dr. Barry Buttler, DVM, MS, DACVIM, is an experienced veterinarian who specializes in the care of small animals, specifically dogs. Dr. Barry K. Buttler is a member of the American Veterinary Medical Association and holds multiple certifications in small animal emergency medicine and geriatric pet health.

Veterinarian (DVM) Dr. Barry Buttler

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