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The 9 Best Puppy Foods For Sensitive Stomachs & Diarrhea

It appears that few people ever bring up one of the most difficult aspects of dog ownership: the fact that many puppies have sensitive stomachs. It may appear that no matter what you give them, the food comes back with a vengeance, usually on your most expensive piece of furniture.

Finding adequate dog food is also difficult. There are so many substances to examine, and the labels appear to be deliberately perplexing. It might be worrisome to consider that you may accidently make your dog's condition worse by feeding him the incorrect food.

Fortunately, we have made it easier than ever before to discover the appropriate meal for sensitive stomachs. In the reviews that follow, BestForPets (bestforpets.org) take a close look at some of the best puppy foods for sensitive stomachs & diarrhea now available on the market, so you can pick one that your lovely canine companion will eat for more than a few minutes.


Wellness Grain Free Dry Dog Food

We believe that Pro Plan is the greatest diet for a finicky dog, but it is pricey. If you’re searching for something a bit more affordable, we feel Wellness 89147 Natural is the most cost-effective puppy food for sensitive stomachs.

It is grain-free, removing one of the most prevalent causes of irritable bowel syndrome and reducing the risk of obesity. Instead of maize or other grains, it contains DHA-rich foods such as salmon, as well as probiotics and chicory root extract to maintain healthy intestinal bacteria and help digestion.

This is dry kibble as opposed to wet food, so you may need to feed your dog more of it to keep him satisfied. Some puppies may also reject dry food, therefore you may need to combine it with wet food.

The Wellness 89147 Natural and the Pro Plan were neck-and-neck for our top ranking, but the fact that the latter is a wet meal gave it the advantage. Still, Wellness provides superior nutrition at a reasonable price, making it an obvious choice for our budget option.


  • Grain-free recipe
  • Reduces the chance of obesity
  • Includes probiotics
  • Utilizes chicory root extract to support healthy gastrointestinal microbiota
  • Has salmon for DHA


  • Requires huge portion sizes
  • Picky dogs may not eat it


Natural AvoDerm Puppy Dog Food

In addition to chicken and white and brown rice, AvoDerm 100064769 Natural contains avocados, which are loaded with the omega fatty acids necessary for your dog’s immune system development. It is also beneficial for the skin and fur, making it an excellent option for animals with allergies or other skin disorders.

The kibble bits have been pressure-cooked to lock in all the nutrients and to make digestion simpler for your dog’s stomach. You should be able to feed your dog less of this food without sacrificing nutrients compared to other brands.

Our primary issue with Avoderm is that the first component is a chicken meal and not genuine chicken. Given the relatively high price of this cuisine, this item looks out of place, but the remainder of the ingredient list more than makes up for it.

The expensive price and usage of chicken meals prevent this dish from ranking higher than number three, but it is still a wonderful dish. We just propose beginning with the two alternatives above it.


  • Provides an immune system boost.
  • Beneficial for dogs with skin disorders
  • Contains healthful fats from avocados.
  • Nutrient-sealing pressure cooking


  • Contains chicken meal rather than actual chicken
  • More costly than others


Purina Pro Plan Wet Dog Food

Chemicals and other artificial substances in dog food are one of the leading causes of sensitive stomachs in canines. The number one component in Purina Pro Plan 3810002773 is genuine chicken, so you can be confident that your dog is eating something that his stomach is accustomed to, as opposed to being pushed to digest a bunch of fillers and preservatives. It also contains rice, which is so mild and flavorless that it is unlikely to create any issues.

The meal is incredibly soft and sensitive, so your dog should have no trouble swallowing it, which is the first stage in correct digestion. It is gentle on young teeth and combines well with dry kibble if you choose to include any.

In addition to being easily digestible, this meal is loaded with essential nutrients for a developing dog, such as vitamin B-12. This will maintain the softness and manageability of your pet’s fur while ensuring that his eyes, brain, and other organs develop normally.


  • Real poultry is the primary component.
  • Rice soothes troubled tummies.
  • Contains supplemental vitamin B-12
  • Soft, succulent, and simple for pups to consume.
  • Excellent for the transition to dry foods
  • Makes fur manageable and plush


  • A little on the expensive side


NUTRO Dry Puppy Dog Food

Calcium is added to NUTRO 10157655, which helps create healthy teeth and bones (and let’s face it, pups need strong bones to survive all those somersaults up the stairs). In addition, it contains natural protein from lamb or chicken, glucosamine, and chondroitin for joint health.

They offer a recipe made specifically for pups of big breeds, which is beneficial because these dogs are sensitive to stomach issues such as bloat.

It has a bit more salt than we would want, which might drive your dog to drink too much, which paradoxically can result in diarrhea or vomiting.

As a result, while this is a mild meal overall, you should observe your dog’s water consumption for the first few days to determine how they react. If you don’t want to feed your dog stale kibble, you’ll have to find a means to keep the bag fresh (and the lamb formula is especially prone to going bad quickly).

Overall, NUTRO 10157655 is a nutrient-dense alternative that should aid in your dog’s growth into a large, healthy adult. We just cannot put it higher than fourth, mostly due to the excessive salt content.


  • Calcium is plenty for healthy teeth and bones
  • Contains glucosamine and chondroitin to support healthy joints
  • Available in a special recipe for large-breed puppies
  • Excellent natural protein content


  • High salt content, which may result in increased water consumption
  • The bag cannot be resealed
  • Lamb formula doesn’t keep too long


Blue Buffalo Dry Dog Food 574

Each bag of Blue Buffalo 574 Natural contains few ingredients, so there are fewer possible allergens that might make your dog sick. It is also confined to a single protein source, turkey, which is generally well-tolerated by most dogs.

The kibble also contains the company’s “LifeSource Bits,” which sound like magical relics required to combat an evil wizard. Instead, they are vitamins and antioxidants added to suit the nutritional needs of your dog.

However, potatoes are one of the few mentioned components. Potatoes can induce diarrhea or explosive flatulence in many canines. This is not the case for all breeds and varies from case to case, so if your dog can tolerate this food, it’s a good idea to continue feeding it. There is also more salt than we would want to see.

While Blue Buffalo Natural is undoubtedly superior to the majority of dog food available at your local grocery store, there’s a good possibility it might create some of the same problems you’re wanting to avoid, so we suggest starting with one of the meals listed above.


  • Formulation with few ingredients is easier for dogs to digest.
  • LifeSource Bits are loaded with vitamins and minerals.
  • Utilizes turkey, which most dogs can easily take


  • Contains potatoes, which are difficult for some dogs to digest.
  • Possible causes of diarrhea or gas
  • A high sodium concentration


Dry Nature’s Recipe Dog Food

The Nature’s Recipe 730521504373 dog food is rich in fiber, which is essential for maintaining the health of a dog’s gastrointestinal system (and yours, too, but we recommend finding a better source than puppy kibble). Your dog may defecate more often, but as long as the stools are solid, this is a positive sign.

It is abundant in taurine, which is essential for sustaining heart health. The combination of taurine and fiber might aid in the fight against obesity (but only when combined with regular exercise and strict portion control).

This dog food contains a great deal of barley and oats, two ingredients to which some canines have adverse reactions. Some dogs dislike the flavor, so it may be difficult to convince your pet to consume it. That may be a blessing in disguise since although this may make your dog’s poop healthier, it will also make it stinkier (and you probably didn’t think that was possible).

Nature’s Recipe is a good option for dogs with constipation or breeds prone to cardiac issues, but its high grain content prevents it from climbing higher in these rankings.


  • Containing fiber
  • Contains taurine to promote heart health


  • High grain content, particularly barley and oats, might cause digestive difficulties.
  • It could be rejected by finicky dogs.
  • Worsens feces odor


Blackwood Dog Food for Sensitive Stomach

Each batch of Blackwood Pet 22300 Sensitive Stomach is slow-cooked with high-quality ingredients including salmon, celery, beets, and spinach, making it more like a home-cooked dinner than a bag of dog food. Your dog will receive several nutrients from a variety of sources, which is beneficial for his long-term development.

Additionally, the producer adds pre- and probiotics to the meal, which can help enhance the condition of your dog’s digestive system.

Unfortunately, it contains a great number of protein meals and grains, which is undesirable. We would recommend combining this diet with additional meat to ensure that your dog receives all the necessary nutrients for building strong, flexible muscles.

It has little fiber and is not meant for pups, so you may want to wait until your dog is older before giving it to him (but not too much bigger, as the bits might be too small for larger breeds to eat easily).

Overall, Blackwood Pet Sensitive Stomach is a tasty meal with enough of nutrients and probiotics, but it may be better suited for older dogs, so we cannot justify a higher grade.


  • Contains nutrients derived from a vast array of plant and animal sources
  • Contains prebiotics and probiotics


  • Heavy reliance on protein meal
  • Smaller kibble may not be suitable for bigger dogs.
  • Lack of fiber
  • Is not specially designed for puppies

Buyer's Guide

Choosing the right food for a dog with a sensitive stomach is difficult. There is a great deal of contradictory information available, and the ingredient lists on dog food labels can be longer than in the novel War and Peace. How therefore are you to determine what to feed your dog? Rely on trial and error with the expectation of success?

We believe that you have better alternatives. We will outline exactly what to look for and what to avoid when purchasing puppy food.

What You Desire

Regardless of the age of the dog, there are three essential components that should be considered while purchasing food: protein, fiber, and fat.


Protein is typically the key selling point and flavoring component of dog food. Normal sources of protein include fish, cattle, poultry, lamb, and even unusual animals such as wild boar.

There is no “superior” protein source for dogs with sensitive stomachs, as your dog is equally likely to be sensitive to anything. This is one of the rare instances where trial and error may be necessary.

The form is more important than type when it comes to proteins. Even though dogs are omnivores, they require meat – genuine meat, not meat-like stuff (guess that rules out McDonald’s). Ensure that the first ingredient listed on the label is genuine meat and not some form of protein meal.

What level of protein should your dog consume? It varies on the breed, but in general, the greater the number, the better. Consider: if you released your dog into the wild, do you believe he would spend more time pursuing prey or gathering carrots? Obviously, you should not feed your pet a meat-only diet, but it will be difficult to offer your dog more than he can manage.


Fiber is another essential component of any diet (and if you’ve ever been encouraged to eat more fiber, you know how uncomfortable it can be to go without it). Look for components such as beet pulp, pumpkin, psyllium, and inulin if you have a sensitive stomach.

All of these substances are “soluble” fibers, which means they are broken down within the digestive system of a dog (“insoluble” fibers pass through essentially unmodified). This is advantageous for dogs with sensitive stomachs because soluble fiber helps feed the healthy bacteria in the dog’s intestines, therefore reducing digestive problems.

The average fiber level of most meals is around 5 percent, which should be sufficient. A dog with a sensitive stomach may require a bit more food. Just don’t exceed 10%, or you risk making matters worse.


Likewise, the fat content is essential. You want to discover the optimal range here, which is likely between 10 and 15%. However, similar to proteins, the kind may be more significant than the quantity.

Seek good fats, such as those found in fish oils. These are rich in omega fatty acids, which help boost your dog’s immunity, brighten its coat, and maintain healthy skin.

Vitamins and Minerals

While the aforementioned are the three most critical criteria, you should also ensure that your dog receives adequate vitamins and minerals.

The majority of high-quality meals do a decent job of achieving this, but your dog may require an additional boost of certain substances, such as glucosamine or chondroitin. This should be discussed with your veterinarian.

What to Prevent

Knowing what to feed your dog is essential, but feeding him food with unhealthy components might destroy all your efforts to provide him with a nutritious diet.

Corn and Animal Derivatives

Corn and other filler grains are the most typical problematic element. Manufacturers use maize because it is inexpensive, but your dog may have difficulty digesting it and it might contribute to obesity in the future. Some grain is OK, but it should be relatively low on the ingredient list.

Corn syrup, however, should be avoided at all costs. The same applies to substances such as monosodium glutamate, preservatives such as ethoxyquin, BHT/BHA, and propylene glycol, as well as any type of “by-product.” These are added to artificially extend the shelf life of the food or to provide the producer with a cost-effective means to dispose of all the undesirable meat they couldn’t sell to more discerning clients.

Consider this: if you wouldn’t consume animal byproducts yourself, why would you offer them to your dog? (Don’t consider this if you’ve just eaten a hot dog.)


If you’re having trouble finding puppy food for sensitive stomachs that are suitable for your pet, we suggest starting with Ollie Dog Food. Its premium ingredient list is kind on puppies’ tummies without being bland, and it contains all the nutrients a young dog needs to grow large and healthy.

However, it is pricy; if you need something less expensive, Wellness Complete Health Natural is an excellent option. The grain-free composition is loaded with gut-friendly components like as pre-and probiotics, which should help your dog overcome any nastiness he may be experiencing.

We understand how difficult and sad it may be to see your dog battle with intestinal disorders, regardless of whatever option you finally select. BestForPets (bestforpets.org) hope that these evaluations have made it simpler for you to discover the best puppy foods for sensitive stomachs & diarrhea so that you and your dog can spend more time playing and less time…well, you can fill in the blank.

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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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