Dog Food

7 Best Dog Foods for Senior Dogs of 2024 – Vet-Recommended & Reviewed

Jane Davis

Note: If you click a link on this page, then go on to make a purchase, we may receive a commission but at no extra cost to you

Despite the overwhelming number of dog food brands on the market, we’ve simplified the task for you by compiling a list of the 7 best dog foods for senior dogs of 2024.

We understand your desire to provide the best for your aging canine companions, and it’s true that they have specific dietary needs different from younger dogs.

Our selections are not only vet-recommended but also thoroughly reviewed, taking into account factors like nutritional value, ingredient quality, and palatability.

Stick with us, and you’ll discover the food that will keep your senior dog healthy, spry, and satisfied.

Blue Buffalo Natural Senior Wet Dog Food, Chicken (Pack of 12)

Blue Buffalo Homestyle Recipe Senior Wet Dog Food, Made with Natural...
  • REAL MEAT FIRST: This Blue Buffalo wet dog food is made with...
  • FORMULATED FOR SENIOR DOGS: Blue Buffalo Homestyle Recipe...
  • WHOLESOME INGREDIENTS: Blue Buffalo natural wet dog food...
  • FEED THREE WAYS: These wet dog food cans can be served as a...
  • Contains: Twelve (12) 12.5-oz. cans of BLUE Homestyle Recipe...

If your senior dog is a picky eater or has a sensitive stomach, Blue Buffalo Natural Senior Wet Dog Food, Chicken (Pack of 12) could be the perfect choice, thanks to its natural ingredients and real chicken as the primary component. It’s not just about flavor, though; this food is a nutritional powerhouse. It’s enhanced with essential vitamins and minerals, and it contains no by-product meals, corn, wheat, soy, artificial flavors, or preservatives. Plus, it’s got glucosamine and chondroitin for joint health and mobility.

You can serve it as a treat, mix it with dry food, or make it a standalone meal. Its wholesome ingredients like brown rice, barley, carrots, peas, sweet potatoes, flaxseed, cranberries, and blueberries contribute to its appealing taste. All these benefits make it a superb choice for your senior pooch.

Best For: Senior dogs who are picky eaters, have sensitive stomachs, or need extra joint support.

Pros:

  • Made with real chicken, the first ingredient, providing high-quality protein.
  • Contains natural ingredients, including brown rice, barley, vegetables, and berries, ensuring wholesome nutrition.
  • Enhanced with vitamins and minerals and includes glucosamine and chondroitin for joint health.

Cons:

  • Some customers have reported receiving dented cans.

Blue Buffalo Life Protection Formula Senior Dry Dog Food, Chicken & Brown Rice Flavor (30 lb Bag)

Sale
Blue Buffalo Life Protection Formula Senior Dry Dog Food, Supports...
  • REAL CHICKEN FIRST: This Blue Buffalo dog food is made with...
  • NUTRITION FOR SENIOR DOGS: BLUE Life Protection Formula...
  • IMMUNE SYSTEM SUPPORT: This natural dog food features...
  • HEALTHY, WHOLESOME INGREDIENTS: Blue Buffalo dry dog food is...
  • Contains: One (1) 30-lb. bag of BLUE Life Protection Formula...

For your aging canine companion, Blue Buffalo Life Protection Formula Senior Dry Dog Food, Chicken & Brown Rice Flavor is an excellent choice. It boasts real chicken as the first ingredient and is packed full of nourishing blueberries and vegetables.

This 30 lb bag ensures your pup gets a protein-rich diet without any chicken or poultry by-products, corn, wheat, or soy.

Blue Buffalo’s formula supports joint health and mobility with glucosamine and chondroitin. It also contains LifeSource Bits, designed to boost your dog’s immunity.

Customers rave about their dogs enjoying the flavor, with many switching from other brands to Blue Buffalo. Nutrients like Omega 3 and 6 fatty acids, taurine, and L-carnitine help maintain a healthy, balanced diet, making this a great pick for your senior dog’s needs.

Best For: Senior dogs need a nutrient-rich, protein-packed diet that supports joint health and boosts immunity.

Pros:

  • First ingredient is real chicken, ensuring a high-protein diet.
  • Contains glucosamine and chondroitin for joint health and mobility support.
  • Includes LifeSource Bits for a boosted immune system.

Cons:

  • May not be suitable for dogs with specific dietary restrictions or allergies due to its various ingredients.

ORIJEN Senior Grain Free Dry Dog Food (23.5lb)

ORIJEN Senior Dry Dog Food, Grain Free Dry Dog Food for Senior Dogs,...
  • One (1) 23.5 lb bag of ORIJEN Senior Original Dry Dog Food
  • Nutrient-dense, grain free* dog food tailored to maintain...
  • Grain free* dry dog food made with the most succulent and...
  • The first five ingredients are fresh or raw chicken, turkey,...
  • Made in the USA with quality ingredients from around the...

When your furry friend is entering their golden years, ORIJEN Senior Grain Free Dry Dog Food, packed with up to 85% animal ingredients, is an unbeatable choice for maintaining their health and vitality.

This 23.5 lb bag of nutrient-rich food is tailored to support weight management and joint health. With the first five ingredients being fresh or raw chicken, turkey, salmon, whole herring, and chicken liver, your dog will get a strong source of protein, vitamins, and minerals.

It’s made right here in the USA, without adding soy, corn, tapioca, or wheat.

In addition, it includes Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids, Chondroitin, and Glucosamine to support joint health. Customers rate it highly, recognizing the high quality and excellent results despite a slightly higher price point.

Best For: Senior dogs that require a nutrient-dense, grain-free diet to support their weight management and joint health.

Pros:

  • Contains up to 85% animal ingredients, providing high protein content and mimicking dogs’ ancestral diet
  • Tailored to support weight management and joint health in senior dogs, with Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids, Chondroitin, and Glucosamine included
  • Made in the USA with no soy, corn, tapioca, or wheat ingredients added

Cons:

  • Higher price point compared to other dog food brands

Purina Pro Plan Senior Dog Food, Chicken & Rice Formula (34 lb. Bag)

Sale
Purina Pro Plan Senior Dog Food With Probiotics for Dogs, Shredded...
  • Made with high-quality protein, including real chicken as...
  • Fortified with guaranteed live probiotics to support...
  • Hard kibble mixed with tender meaty pieces create a...
  • Used to be known as SAVOR Shredded Blend Chicken and Rice...
  • EPA, an omega-3 fatty acid, and glucosamine help support his...

Often chosen by pet owners, Purina Pro Plan Senior Dog Food, Chicken & Rice Formula is a top pick for senior dogs, offering high-quality protein with real chicken as the number one ingredient.

This blend is fortified with live probiotics, supporting your dog’s digestive and immune health. It also boasts of EPA, an omega-3 fatty acid, and glucosamine to aid joint health and mobility.

This dog food’s unique mix of hard kibble and tender meaty pieces provides a delightful dining experience for your dog.

It’s available in various sizes, catering to your dog’s appetite and your convenience. With its focus on the changing nutritional needs of dogs aged 7 years and older, the Purina Pro Plan ensures your senior dog gets a balanced diet, promoting cognitive health and mental sharpness.

Best For: Senior dogs that require a balanced diet enriched with high-quality protein, probiotics, and essential nutrients for joint health and mobility.

Pros:

  • Made with real chicken as the number one ingredient, ensuring high-quality protein intake.
  • Fortified with live probiotics to support digestive and immune health.
  • Contains EPA and glucosamine, promoting joint health and mobility in senior dogs.

Cons:

  • Contains grain ingredients, may not be suitable for dogs with grain allergies.

IAMS Healthy Aging Large Breed Dry Dog Food (30 lb. Bag)

IAMS Healthy Aging Adult Large Breed Dry Dog Food for Mature and...
  • IAMS Healthy Aging Adult Large Breed Dry Dog Food Chicken...
  • Contains one (1) 30 lb. bag of IAMS Healthy Aging Adult...
  • 1st ingredient is real, farm-raised chicken in this healthy...
  • Formulated to support healthy bones and joint health with a...
  • Promotes healthy digestion with a blend of fiber and...

If you have a large breed senior dog, IAMS Healthy Aging Large Breed Dry Dog Food is a top choice. It is packed with real, farm-raised chicken as its first ingredient and specially formulated to support your pet’s bone, joint, and immune health.

This 30 lb. bag is designed specifically for mature and senior dogs. It promotes healthy digestion with a blend of fiber and prebiotics.

Additionally, it is enriched with antioxidants to strengthen your dog’s immune system.

This IAMS formula ensures your pet gets the right balance of key nutrients necessary for large aging dogs. Many customers have attested to its positive impact on their dogs’ health.

By feeding your senior canine this product, you’re taking an important step in maintaining their health and vitality.

Best For: Large-breed senior dogs needing a nutritionally balanced food that supports bone, joint, and immune health.

Pros:

  • First ingredient is real, farm-raised chicken
  • Promotes healthy digestion with a blend of fiber and prebiotics
  • Fortified with antioxidants for a strong immune system

Cons:

  • Only available in a 30 lb. bag, which may be too large for some pet owners

Blue Buffalo Senior Small Breed Dry Dog Food, Chicken and Brown Rice (15-lb)

Blue Buffalo Life Protection Formula Small Breed Senior Dry Dog Food,...
  • REAL MEAT FIRST: This Blue Buffalo natural dry dog food is...
  • NUTRITION FOR SMALL BREED DOGS: This small breed senior dog...
  • IMMUNE SYSTEM SUPPORT: This small breed dog food features...
  • HEALTHY, WHOLESOME INGREDIENTS: This small breed dog food is...
  • Contains: One (1) 15-lb. bag of BLUE Life Protection Formula...

Looking for high-quality nourishment for your aging dog? Blue Buffalo Senior Small Breed Dry Dog Food, Chicken, and Brown Rice is a top-notch choice with real meat as its first ingredient.

The protein-rich chicken helps maintain healthy muscles, while the wholesome grains, veggies, and fruit provide necessary nutrients.

You’ll love that it’s free from chicken by-products, corn, wheat, soy, and artificial flavors or preservatives.

It’s not just about meals, though. This food includes glucosamine and chondroitin for joint health and Lifesource Bits packed with antioxidants for immune support. And for your convenience, it’s available in a 15-lb package.

Your furry friend deserves the best, and Blue Buffalo delivers. Feed them food that’s good for their body and their taste buds.

Best For: Aging dogs that need high-quality, nutritious, and tasty food to maintain overall health.

Pros:

  • Real meat as the first ingredient ensures high-quality protein intake.
  • Contains no chicken by-products, corn, wheat, soy, and artificial flavors or preservatives, making it a safe and healthy choice.
  • Includes glucosamine and chondroitin for joint support, and Lifesource Bits for immune health.

Cons:

  • The packaging may vary, which could be confusing for repeat customers.

Merrick Premium Grain Free Dry Senior Dog Food (Chicken and Sweet Potato, 22lb Bag)

Sale
Merrick Premium Grain Free Dry Senior Dog Food, Wholesome and Natural...
  • Merrick Premium Grain Free Dry Senior Dog Food, Real Chicken...
  • Real deboned chicken is always the first ingredient in this...
  • Features a holistic blend of 54% healthy fats and protein...
  • Merrick chicken senior dog food delivers 78% of protein from...
  • Wholesome grain free recipe contains omega-6 and omega-3...

Merrick Premium Grain Free Dry Senior Dog Food is the perfect choice for your aging furry friend to maintain a healthy weight and nourish their skin and coat.

This vet-recommended food is specially formulated for senior dogs. It is rich in high-quality protein from deboned chicken and turkey meals.

It is also enhanced with essential vitamins and minerals, and it doesn’t contain any artificial colors, flavors, or preservatives.

Customers rave about the positive impact on their dogs’ health, from improved hair growth to enhanced vitality. However, some have reported packaging issues.

With Merrick’s premium quality and budget-friendly price, your senior dog’s nutrition is in good hands.

Best For: Senior dogs needing a wholesome, natural diet to maintain a healthy weight and nourish their skin and coat.

Pros:

  • Formulated with high-quality protein from deboned chicken and turkey meal.
  • Contains no artificial colors, flavors, or preservatives.
  • Positive customer reviews highlighting improved health and vitality in dogs.

Cons:

  • Some customers reported issues with the packaging.

Other Product We Recommend:

Factors to Consider When Choosing Dog Food for Senior Dogs

When we’re choosing food for our senior dogs, there are several factors we need to consider.

We have to consider their nutritional needs as they age, the quality of the food ingredients, and any necessary dietary adjustments.

Understanding food labels and ensuring the food supports joint health is also crucial.

Nutritional Needs of Seniors

Understanding the unique nutritional needs of our senior dogs is essential in choosing the right food to support their overall health and well-being.

As dogs age, their energy needs decrease, so it’s important to provide food that is lower in calories to prevent weight gain.

Added supplements, such as glucosamine and chondroitin, benefit joint health and mobility.

Digestive health is crucial, so food should contain fiber and probiotics.

Higher levels of antioxidants and omega-3 fatty acids support their aging immune system and cognitive function.

Lastly, maintaining muscle mass is key, so we should ensure their food includes high-quality animal protein.

Ingredient Quality Importance

Choosing the right food for our senior dogs becomes a critical task, considering the paramount importance of ingredient quality in meeting their nutritional needs. High-quality ingredients don’t just fill their stomachs; they support their overall health and well-being.

Nutrient-dense, wholesome ingredients help our aging pets maintain a healthy weight and mobility. It’s crucial that the food we select is rich in essential nutrients like protein, vitamins, and minerals to support joint health and immune function.

Moreover, senior dog food with top-notch ingredients can be more appealing to picky eaters and easier on sensitive stomachs.

Dietary Adjustments With Age

So, how do we adjust our dogs’ diet as they age to accommodate their changing nutritional needs? We’ve to tailor their meals to their evolving requirements.

Senior dogs often need fewer calories but still need high-quality protein to maintain muscle mass and overall health.

We also need to consider joint health, choosing foods with ingredients like glucosamine and chondroitin to support mobility.

Furthermore, we should look for foods that include additional nutrients and antioxidants to boost cognitive function, immune health, and overall vitality.

It’s vital to consider your dog’s individual needs, including specific health concerns or dietary restrictions. Always consult with a vet if you’re unsure.

Age-specific nutritional adjustments are key to keeping our older dogs healthy and vibrant.

Analyzing Food Labels

Having discussed the dietary adjustments needed as our dogs age, let’s now turn our attention to the critical task of analyzing food labels when selecting the best food for our senior canine friends.

It’s vital to examine the first few ingredients as they’re the main components. Be wary of by-products, artificial flavors, preservatives, and allergens like soy, wheat, and corn.

Look for beneficial supplements like glucosamine, chondroitin, omega-3 fatty acids, and vitamins. These aid joint health, improve coat shine and boost overall well-being.

Joint Health Support

Regarding supporting joint health in our senior dogs, we need to look out for dog foods that contain glucosamine and chondroitin.

These elements help maintain joint mobility. Opt for nutrient-dense, grain-free formulas providing Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids, essential for joint health support.

High-quality protein sources, like chicken, turkey, and salmon, aid in joint health and muscle maintenance. Additionally, dog foods containing WholePrey ingredients, such as fresh meat, organs, cartilage, and bone, provide natural sources of glucosamine and chondroitin.

Digestibility and Fiber Content

Ensuring our senior dogs have food that’s easy to digest and contains ample fiber is a crucial aspect of maintaining their digestive health.

A diet high in fiber promotes regular bowel movements and can help manage weight, preventing constipation. We recommend looking for dog food with easily digestible ingredients like brown rice, peas, sweet potatoes, and whole grains.

These not only improve gastrointestinal health but also contribute to overall well-being.

Fiber sources such as fruits and vegetables provide essential nutrients.

Special Dietary Requirements

As our dogs age, we must consider their special dietary requirements. This can include lower calorie content, increased fiber, reduced phosphorus, and additional joint support.

Senior dogs often need high protein and low fat diets, balanced with essential vitamins and minerals.

Some dog foods are specifically formulated for senior dogs.

These include glucosamine, chondroitin, and omega-3 fatty acids to promote joint health and mobility.

Different formulations are also available for large or small breed seniors to meet size-specific needs.

Wet Vs Dry Food

In choosing between wet and dry food for our senior dogs, we’ve got to weigh several key factors.

Wet food can be more hydrating, appealing for dogs with dental issues or a reduced sense of smell, and provide a softer texture for those with chewing difficulties. It may also offer higher protein content and fewer fillers.

However, dry food can help maintain dental health, be more convenient for storage and feeding, and have a longer shelf life. It’s often more cost-effective too.

All in all, we must consider our pets’ specific needs, our lifestyle, and budget in making this decision. Every dog is unique, so it’s important to consult with our vet for personalized advice.

About

Jane Davis

Hi, my name is Jane Davis, and I love dogs. I own a labrador retriever named Max. When I was growing up, we always had dogs at our house. They provide us with such unconditional love and companionship, and I can't imagine my life without one by my side.

This website does not provide pet medical advice. For professional advice regarding your pet's health, please consult a licensed veterinarian in your local area.