The 5 Best Holistic Dog Foods
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When it comes to dog food, there is an endless variety to choose from. Each product is unique, though they may look very similar until you take a closer look.
Dog food can be divided into many categories and understanding those categories is the key to picking out a healthy and high-quality dog food for your dog.
Holistic dog food is one of the best options out there because it is made with wholesome, natural ingredients and designed to provide your dog with completely balanced nutrition.
Keep reading to learn more about your dog’s basic dietary needs and to receive some tips for picking the best holistic dog food. You’ll also receive our top 5 picks for the best holistic dog food.
Compare Best Holistic Dog Foods
1. Holistic Select Natural Dry Dog Food
2. Nutro Natural Choice Adult Chicken & Brown Rice Recipe Dry Dog Food
BEST FOR PUPPIES
3. Holistic Select Puppy Vantage Grain-Free Dry Food
BEST FOR SENIORS
4. Halo Holistic Grain-Free Natural Dog Food for Senior Dogs
BEST FOR ALLERGIES
5. Solid Gold Sensitive Stomach Dry Dog Food
3718 kcal/kg or 454 kcal/cup
3654 kcal/kg, 343 kcal/cup
What Is Holistic Dog Food?
There is no legal definition for the word “holistic” when it comes to dog food, so don’t believe everything you read on a dog food package.
Generally speaking, however, holistic products are made with all-natural ingredients with no artificial additives. They are also usually made with whole-food ingredients and supplemented to ensure nutritional balance.
Here are some things to look for in a holistic dog food:
- Natural Ingredients: A holistic dog food should be made with all-natural ingredients rather than by-products and unnamed proteins or fats. Look for a high-quality source of animal protein and fat at the top of the list, along with digestible carbohydrates.
- Nutritional Balance: All dog foods use synthetic vitamin and mineral supplements to ensure complete and balanced nutrition, but a good holistic dog food will also contain fresh fruits and veggies to provide natural sources for some of those nutrients.
- Beneficial Supplements: In addition to vitamins and minerals, a good holistic dog food will contain other beneficial supplements to support your dog’s whole-body health. Examples include prebiotic fibers, probiotics, and joint-supporting nutrients.
- No Additives: Just as important as the ingredients included in holistic dog food are the ingredients not included. Holistic dog food should be free from artificial additives, including colors, flavors, and chemical preservatives.
Keeping all of these things in mind, you’re now ready to learn how to choose the best holistic dog food. Here’s what you need to know:
How Do You Choose the Best Holistic Dog Food?
When it comes to choosing the best holistic dog food, you need to consider your dog’s basic nutritional needs as well as the quality of the product itself. All dogs require a protein-rich diet to support their lean muscle mass.
This protein is best when it comes from animal-based sources because they are complete proteins that provide all 10 essential amino acids. Your dog needs at least 18% protein.
After protein comes healthy fat, a rich source of energy and essential fatty acids for healthy skin and coat. Again, this should come from animal-based sources, though plant oils can be used to provide a balance of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids. Your dog needs at least 5% crude fat in his diet, depending on his breed size and activity level.
Your dog has no specific requirements for carbohydrates in its diet other than that they be digestible. Holistic dog food usually contains whole grains or grain-free carbohydrates like sweet potatoes, peas, and chickpeas. In addition to carbohydrates, holistic dog food should contain vitamins and minerals for nutritional balance and other supplements like probiotics for healthy digestion. Again, all of these ingredients should be completely natural and the recipe should be free from artificial additives.
A good holistic dog food starts with all-natural ingredients. Look for premium sources of animal protein and fat, digestible carbohydrates, and fresh fruits and veggies, as well as vitamin and mineral supplements, to ensure whole-body health.
Here are our top 5 picks for the best holistic dog food that you should consider:
Holistic Select Natural Dry Dog Food
- Protein: 23% Min
- Fat: 15% Min
- Fiber: 4.50% Max
- Calories: 3718 kcal/kg or 454 kcal/cup
- Made with all-natural ingredients, no artificial additives
- Supplemented with prebiotics and probiotics for healthy digestion
- Digestible whole-grain carbohydrates for fiber and energy
- Some dogs may be sensitive to grains
- Fairly expensive to feed as a staple diet
It also contains fresh fruits and vegetables as natural sources for key nutrients and beneficial supplements for balance. Plus, it contains digestive enzymes and live cultures to ensure healthy and regular digestion.
Nutro Natural Choice Adult Chicken & Brown Rice Recipe Dry Dog Food
- Protein: 22% Min
- Fat: 14% Min
- Fiber: 3.5% Max
- Calories: 3654 kcal/kg, 343 kcal/cup
- Real chicken as the first ingredient
- No artificial additives or low-quality fillers
- Highly digestible recipe with whole grains
- May not be high enough in protein for some dogs
- Some dogs may be allergic or sensitive to grains
This formula is completely free from by-products, low-quality fillers, and artificial additives so you can feel good about feeding it to your dog. You’ll also be glad to know that it’s very digestible and supplemented with chelated minerals.
Holistic Select Puppy Vantage Grain-Free Dry Food
- Protein: 28% Min
- Fat: 18% Min
- Fiber: 4.5% Max
- Calories: 400 kcal/cup
- Single source of high-quality animal protein (chicken)
- Made with digestible grain-free carbohydrates
- Fresh fruits and veggies as natural sources for nutrients
- Some dogs are sensitive or allergic to chicken ingredients
- Expensive to feed as a staple diet
It contains dried fruits and vegetables to provide natural sources of key nutrients with chelated minerals to ensure optimal nutrient absorption. You’ll also be glad to know that it is completely grain-free and supplemented with probiotics for healthy digestion.
Halo Holistic Grain-Free Natural Dog Food for Senior Dogs
- Protein: 23% Min
- Fat: 12% Min
- Fiber: 5% Max
- Calories: 387 kcal/cup
- Made with fresh turkey as the main ingredient
- Digestible grain-free carbohydrates for energy and nutrients
- Probiotics for healthy digestion and nutrient absorption
- Contains some plant protein (pea protein)
- Could be higher in fat for some puppies
This recipe features fresh turkey as the main ingredients with dried legumes and peas for carbohydrates. It is rich in healthy fats for energy and skin/coat health with chelated minerals for nutritional balance and probiotics for healthy digestion.
Solid Gold Sensitive Stomach Dry Dog Food
- Protein: 18% Min
- Fat: 6% Min
- Fiber: 4% Max
- Calories: 3,330 kcal/kg
- Designed for digestibility in dogs with food allergies or sensitives
- Whole-grain carbohydrates for nutrients and fiber
- Supplemented with dried fermentation products for probiotics
- High carbohydrate content, may be too high for some dogs
- Fairly expensive to feed as a staple diet
This Solid Gold Sensitive Stomach Dry Dog Food is all-natural and made with digestible whole grains as well as premium animal proteins. It features oatmeal, pearled barley, and peas as well as ocean fish meal and chicken fat. It also contains dried fermentation products for probiotic support and fresh fruits and veggies.
How Much Should You Feed Your Dog?
The amount you feed your dog depends on its age, breed, and body weight. Small breeds need more calories per pound of body weight than large dogs, so they may need three meals a day versus the two meals that are appropriate for medium- to large dogs. In terms of the actual volume of food, that will depend on the product you choose because all dog foods have different calorie contents. Choose a high-quality dog food formulated for your dog’s breed size, then follow the feeding recommendations on the package based on its age and weight.
What About Food Allergies and Sensitivities?
All dogs have the potential to develop food allergies and sensitivities, but holistic as well as best Hypoallergenic dog food reduces those risks by removing low-quality ingredients and artificial additives from the equation.
All-natural ingredients are easier for your dog’s body to digest, so make sure the holistic dog food you pick contains whole food ingredients. If your dog is allergic to a common protein or another ingredient, you may want to find a limited-ingredient diet or switch it to a grain-free recipe.
While you can’t always believe what you read on a dog food label, it is generally safe to assume that holistic dog food offers quality nutrition. Take what you’ve learned here to start shopping for holistic dog food or try one of our top 5 picks for the best holistic dog food.