It can be difficult to tell what our dogs are allergic to, but some of the most common culprits include certain proteins. There are also the likes of wheat and corn to eliminate from their diet but the best dog food for allergies stay clear from those types of ingredients anyway.
It is important to find a food that your dog enjoys and does not cause irritation. There is nothing worse than seeing your dog suffer, itching and biting as their skin feels uncomfortable. This is why we have created a list of the best dog food for allergies. Each one is made by a reputable brand and has contributed towards a noticeable difference in many dogs around the world.
- Editor’s Choice
Natural Balance L.I.D. Limited Ingredient Diets Dry Dog Food (Amazon) – Review
- Best Affordable
Purina Beyond Simply 9 Natural Limited Ingredient, Adult Dry Dog Food (Amazon) – Review
- Best Hypoallergenic
Ps For Dogs 100% Hypoallergenic Dog Food – No More Paw Licking & Skin Scratching (Amazon) – Review
- Best Novel Protein
Zignature Kangaroo Formula Dog Food (Amazon) – Review
- Best Value
Acana Singles Limited Ingredient Dry Dog Food (Amazon) – Review
- Easiest To Digest
Hill’s Pet Nutrition D/Skin/Food Sensitivities Potato & Venison Formula (Amazon) – Review
Editor’s Choice: Natural Balance L.I.D. Limited Ingredient Diets Dry Dog Food
You’ll find a lot of limited ingredient recipes on our list and these represent an excellent option for anyone searching for dog food for allergies. This is the best we have found because of the quality of the ingredients, but also the value. The combination of sweet potato and fish tends to be well tolerated by a lot of dogs although, if your dog doesn’t react well to it they may wish to try the venison version.
With lots of salmon, you are getting a quality protein source and although 20% protein could be a little higher, this is a grain-free product for a reasonable price. Note that there is also no poultry by-products included in this dog food. This means it is not going to cause inflammatory problems in the way that other products can. Instead, the sweet potato aids digestion. With no artificial flavors, colors, or preservatives, and no filler ingredients, it is quality dog food for allergies.
- Limited ingredient formula
- Salmon is a quality protein source
- No poultry by-products
Best Affordable: Purina Beyond Simply 9 Natural Limited Ingredient, Adult Dry Dog Food
Easily one of the most popular dog foods for allergies, Purina’s Beyond range are known for being well-tolerated, partially because of the 9 natural ingredients that go into this range of dog food. Whole chicken is the number one ingredient which is a good sign and there are no poultry-by products. The 9 ingredients include the likes of sunflower oil and barley which help with omega-6 fatty acids and fiber.
With no artificial colors or flavors, or corn, soy, and wheat, it is free from some of the most common allergens that cause a pooch to itch and scratch. It is packed with vitamins and minerals for a complete nutrition and all the ingredients can be traced back to their source.
- Only 9 natural ingredients
- Whole chicken is number one ingredient
- Good value
- No artificial colors of flavors
- Some dogs turn their noses up at it
Best Hypoallergenic: Ps For Dogs 100% Hypoallergenic Dog Food – No More Paw Licking & Skin Scratching
Hypoallergenic dog food is a good option for any dog owner who’s pooch is constantly itching and licking their skin. This product is freeze-dried and made with 90% human-grade New Zeland Lamb that is grass-fed. This tells you a lot about the quality of this limited ingredient dog food for allergies and is known to stop skin scratching.
There is no corn or potato and it is also a grain-free dog food making it more likely to be tolerated by dogs with allergies. It is a jerk-like dog food because it has been freeze-dried and although it is a bit different from a lot of other products, it seems to be popular, even with fussy pooches. There is a 100% satisfaction guarantee which is always a good idea when trying to find a product your dog enjoys.
- Made from 90% human-grade New Zeland lamb
- Comes with a 100% satisfaction guarantee
- Raw food quality
- Doesn’t last long so you often need to re stock
Best Novel Protein: Zignature Kangaroo Formula Dog Food
Another limited ingredient dog food and because of the novel protein kangaroo as the number one ingredient. Made with nutrient-rich legumes and highly palatable it is potato and grain-free. This makes it less likely to irritate an allergic dog and it is made from low-glycemic carbs to ensure it can maintain healthy blood sugar levels in your pooch.
there is no chicken, not even traces of it and the kangaroo content makes it a hypoallergenic dog food because it is not a common protein source and unlikely to cause allergies. Suitable for adult dogs and puppies, you’ll find a lot of dog owners commenting on how it stopped their pooches itching, possibly because of the lack of soy, wheat, and corn.
- Kangaroo is usually well-tolerated
- On the pricey side
Best Value: Acana Singles Limited Ingredient Dry Dog Food
Another popular dog food for allergies, and another that is a limited ingredient formula. This makes it easier to find out what ingredient is causing your dog distress. The high protein content is a good sign and depending on the recipe you go for, there is anything from 50 – 75% animal ingredients in every bag. It is a grain-free dog food that also does not contain potato or gluten.
They have left out the fast sugar veg and replaced it with pumpkin and squash for added nourishment and all the ingredients are ones you recognize, not the sort you have to look up to see if it is suitable for a dog to consume. It is a little more expensive than other brands but this is because of the quality of the ingredients, the way they are sourced, and the lack of filler.
- Made of 50 – 75% animal ingredients
- Limited ingredient dog food
- Made from regional ingredients
- Can be a little pricey for some budgets
Easiest To Digest: Hill’s Pet Nutrition D/Skin/Food Sensitivities Potato & Venison Formula
The potato and venison formula is one that is considered easily tolerated and it is made with a dogs sensitivities in mind. It limits the amount of protein that is difficult to digest to keep it from causing gastrointestinal reactions through allergies.
Venison is another novel protein that is found in dog foods for allergies because it is less likely to cause irritations. Because of this, a lot of dog owners report a noticeable difference in their dog’s skin and behavior. There is less crude protein at 14% but this contributes towards it being easy to digest. It is grain-free but does contain some ingredients that aren’t as easily recognizable and are available in different flavors.
- Limits the protein so it is easier to digest
- Venison is a novel protein
- Some people prefer more protein for their dogs
Every pooch is different and at times, an allergy can develop out of nowhere. This means their old favorite is no longer a suitable food for them anymore. Because of this, it is important to find the best dog food for allergies and there is more to it than switching proteins. When you know what a quality product should offer, it is easy to get this purchase right.
This is why we have created the following buyer’s guide, so you and your dog can reap the benefits.
Single Source Protein
This is what any list of the best dog foods will tell you, single-source protein is important. Also, a protein should be the number one ingredient and make around 22% or more of the content of the meal. By sticking to a single source protein, it is easier to identify whether or not a protein is causing the allergic reactions in your dog.
Ingredients You Can Pronounce
Although not every dog food for allergies is going to be as holistic as we might like, there is something to be said for ingredients you recognize. This tends to mean there are no filler ingredients, only what your dog needs and this is best for a dog with a sensitive stomach or allergies.
You might notice a lot of experts recommend limited ingredient dog food for allergies. This is because fewer ingredients make it easier to find the culprit for your dog’s reactions but also makes it less likely that they will react at all. With no filler, your dog only gets the nutritious ingredients they deserve.
No Corn, Wheat, or Soy
Sometimes, the best dog food for allergens are the ones that leave certain ingredients out, rather than try and include others. Any dog food that does not contain corn, wheat, or soy eliminates three common allergens for dogs. Also, stay clear of products that contain artificial colors or preservatives.
Any dog that has suffered from allergies might find that they have difficulty digesting food, even a new brand. To help make the transition easier, prebiotics can be a good idea. By easing digestion and promoting healthy bacteria, your dog will be better off.
The best dog foods for allergies stay away from grain. This is because they can cause inflammation and anything that irritates and already struggling dog is not a good idea.
There are certain signs to look out for if you suspect your dog has allergies. Even if you are yet to transition them onto a new food, you should keep an eye out for itching, biting, or scratching of their skin. Their immune system triggers these reactions and they can even include sneezing or a sensitive stomach.
Hypoallergenic dog food is generally found via a protein source that is not commonly consumed by dogs. This is why you will find the term ‘novel protein’ on certain labels. These include the likes of kangaroo, venison, buffalo, crocodile, and even lamb although this is becoming more popular.
These foods include ingredients that are usually well-tolerated except in extreme cases, as long as they also stay clear of some of the other allergens outside of protein sources.
In short, every dog could benefit from consuming limited ingredient dog food. This is because there are fewer ingredients that are just there to fill out the formula or none at all. They tend to include high-quality proteins and not a lot else, only ingredients that are beneficial for a balanced diet.
The two have similarities but it is important to distinguish between them. Intolerance to food might be linked to how your dog digests it or struggles to an allergy is where your dog’s immune system kicks in and causes a reaction to an ingredient or ingredients that other dogs tolerate perfectly well.
An intolerance will result in gas, bloating, or diarrhea or vomiting. An allergy tends to be some kind of skin irritation that causes your dog to itch, bite, or scratch their skin.
There is no certain age that a dog will start to show signs of suffering from an allergy and any pooch as young as the puppy years or when they are grey around the whiskers can get their first reaction.
Even a dog that has been fed the same food, the same protein for many years can become allergic out of the blue.
Some of the most common food allergies in dogs are from their protein intake. This is why it is important to use a single source protein dog food as it makes it easy for you to see if the protein might be causing the allergy.
Foods that are known to cause reactions in some dogs include beef, chicken, lamb, fish, soy, corn, wheat, and eggs among others.
Because grain is responsible for a lot of reactions, it is easy to put your dog on a grain-free diet because there are so many reputable foods available. By going a step further, try a limited ingredient dog food as these tend to stay clear of the type of ingredients that are known to cause allergies.
Sometimes, it is the protein source that is the problem, switch to a novel protein that is a less common protein such as kangaroo, venison, pheasant, or buffalo among others.
Give the new food some time to work and anything between 8 – 12 weeks is a normal amount of time for your dogs coat to return to a normal state.