If you’re a dog lover, we’ll definitely agree that our little four-legged friends deserve the best nutrition that they can get. This is why you should only choose the best puppy food that you can find so that your little pupper can grow up to be big and strong. Of course, how exactly can you determine which brand is the best? After all, all brands claim that they’re the best.

To help you with that, we’ve made a list of the best puppy food for small breeds and big breeds alike. When choosing a food for your puppies, you should be very selective, which is why you should only stick to high-quality products.

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How to Choose the Best Puppy Food

We do understand that choosing the best out of all the choices can be pretty frustrating, even if we’ve narrowed the choices down to fourteen. This is why you’ll need a buying guide. This buying guide will give you some sort of criteria you can use to pick puppy food or even a dog treat. Basically, these are what you should consider:

Nutritional value

The first thing that you have to consider is the food’s nutritional value. Among the basic things, your puppy needs include proteins, carbs, healthy fats, vitamins, minerals, calcium, phosphorus, Vitamin D, selenium, and zinc.

Now comes the tricky part – determining the amount of a certain vitamin that your dog needs depending on his breed. This means that the best puppy food for large breeds isn’t necessarily the best for smaller breeds. This is because the best large breed puppy food products have nutrient amounts specifically targeted to size and type of the dog.

In general, big breeds will need more minerals and proteins as their body needs more growth pushers than smaller breeds. Also, hairier dogs will need more Omega 3 and vitamin-rich food than less hairy dogs so that they can grow their coat.

That’s just an example of how to choose based on nutritional needs. For a more detailed explanation, it’s highly essential to consult your vet for a professional help.

Wet or dry food

Both have their own set of pros and cons. You have to choose the type of food based on the health condition of your dog. If you notice that your puppy doesn’t have a good appetite (most likely caused by some infection or parasite), then even the best dry puppy food won’t entice him or her to eat.

In this case, your puppy may need the best wet puppy food so that he won’t have a hard time swallowing due to moisture. Additionally, wet puppy food is good for dogs who don’t drink a lot of water.

Of course, the downside of feeding only wet food is that it won’t allow your dog to grow strong teeth. Ideally, you should give your puppies a combination of dry and hard food so that they can develop their fangs through teething and sharpening. Also, most wet foods contain too much fat which is not that good for your dog.

This is why it’s advisable to only give wet food if your dog can’t take dry food. If you’re worried about your dog’s teeth and overall dental health, then you should buy dental equipment such as a teething bone, dog toothpaste, and a dog toothbrush.

Energy level

Your little pal’s energy level is another thing that you have to take into consideration. As you can see, some dogs such as golden retrievers and rottweilers have a higher amount of energy as compared to other breeds.

These dogs need food that can give them the right amount of energy to play and exercise. If they don’t have the energy to exercise, then they will have a lot of pent-up tension that may lead to aggression or moodiness.

Due to this, when choosing the best food for golden retriever puppy or best food for rottweiler puppy, you should go for one that is high in carbs. Carbs can give a lot of energy to burn, allowing these types of puppies to have the right amount of playtime or exercise they need.

Basically, those are the three most important factors that you have to consider when you’re looking for the best puppy food. With this buying guide, you now have a better chance of picking out the most suitable food brand for your puppy.

Therefore, whenever you go through the brands of puppy food, make sure to take note of these three factors before you make your purchase. This will help you choose the brand that’s best for your dog’s needs and wants.

14 Best Best Puppy Foods

Hill’s Science Diet Puppy Food

hills science diet puppy food

An All-natural Puppy Food Designed to Support Bone Growth

The Hill’s Science diet puppy food is made of chicken and oats. It’s one of the best food for German Shepherd puppies and any other big breeds for up to one year. One of the best things about this product is that it is made of natural ingredients which is great for rapid bone growth. It also has a lot of vitamins, minerals, amino acids, and other nutritional content.

Why We Like It:
  • Very safe and easy on the stomach
  • Doesn’t have artificial ingredients and has natural sources of chondroitin and glucosamine which is good for the muscles and bones
  • It’s got a huge supply of antioxidants which helps with the immune system

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Blue Buffalo Freedom Grain Free Natural Puppy Dry Dog Food

blue buffalo freedom grain free natural puppy dry dog food

The Ideal Formulation for Stronger Bones and Muscles

The Blue Buffalo dry food is known for containing different meat flavors that will really appeal to your dog and even provide him with strong muscles and bones. Needless to say, it is one of the best grain-free puppy foods on this list. It has both chicken and turkey meal for your puppy to enjoy.

One of the best things about this product is that it has high levels of DHA and ARA which are acids that are usually present in a dog’s breast milk. Of course, it also has Blue’s signature LifeSource Bits which is a mix of the right amount of antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals. Also, this product doesn’t contain corn, wheat, soy, or meat by-products so it’s really safe.

Why We Like It:
  • Ideal for small dogs due to its small size
  • Includes oatmeal which can give puppies their much-needed protein and nutrients

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CANIDAE Grain Free PURE Dry Dog Food

canidae grain free pure dry dog food

A Hassle-free Choice for Dogs With a Sensitive Stomach

If you’re looking for the best puppy food for sensitive stomachs, this grain-free food from Canidae is a solid choice. The ingredients which make up this food are all healthy. They include meat, fish, sweet potatoes, chickpeas, and lentils. Due to this, dogs can enjoy a nice dry dog food without suffering from any digestion problems.

What I like about this product is that it’s so easy to eat. Therefore, if ever your puppy has the tendency to get an upset stomach, then this is the dog food for him. This way, you won’t have resort to wet dog food which may not be that healthy for young pups anyway. It’s probably the healthiest option that you can choose.

Why We Like It:
  • Specially designed for puppies with a sensitive stomach
  • Made of whole foods to allow easier digestion

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Royal Canin Puppy Dry Dog Food

royal canin puppy dry dog food

Designed for the Development of Medium-sized Pups

The Royal Canin puppy food is great for puppies of up to 1 year of age, especially for big breeds. In fact, it’s one of the best puppy food for labs and other big dogs that have high energy levels. This is because it has the right amount of carbohydrates that your dog needs in order to have a high amount of energy.

Aside from that, it also has a lot of great proteins for muscles as well as antioxidants for a healthy immune system. Also, it contains probiotics which allow your dog’s stomach to breed the right amount of good bacteria for his or her bowel movement.

Why We Like It:
  • Ideal for use on medium-sized puppies
  • Can help in the development of your puppy’s immune system

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Purina Pro Plan Focus Dry Puppy Food

purina pro plan focus dry puppy food

One of the Best Options for Large-breed Puppers

If you’re after food that’s good for your pup’s bones, teeth, and cartilage, then Purina Pro is the one to buy. In fact, it’s one of the best puppy food for pitbulls because it’s great for their teeth. Pitbulls have generally strong teeth, and this dog food is just great for them.

It contains a high level of glucosamine, phosphorus, calcium, and minerals for the development of a puppy’s bones and teeth. Other than that, it is also rich in fish oil and DHA for brain development. Also, it’s made of real meat, making it really safe for consumption.

Why We Like It:
  • Promotes optimal growth for large-sized puppies
  • Comes with real chicken as its first ingredient
  • Helps nourish your puppy’s brain and vision development

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Taste of the Wild High Prairie Puppy

taste of the wild high prairie puppy

An Excellent Combination of Roasted Bison and Venison Flavor

If your puppy is a little bit fussy, then the Taste of the Wild High Prairie Puppy dog food is a great choice. It has a roasted bison and venison flavor which all puppies will surely love. One great thing about this dog food is that it’s made of real meat and not any meat by-product. Therefore, it’s really safe and healthy for your puppy.

Aside from that, it also comes with probiotics, something that a lot of puppy food doesn’t have. This one has actual probiotics which can help a dog’s digestive system.

Why We Like It:
  • Can help promote healthier skin and coat
  • Can be easily digested by your puppy without any problem

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Merrick Grain Free Puppy Recipe Dry Dog Food

merrick grain free puppy recipe dry dog food

High DHA Content for Optimum Brain Development

This grain-free puppy food from Merrick has a very high level of DHA which makes it ideal for your puppy’s brain development. It also is fully natural and has high amounts of Omega 6 and 3 fatty acids which are also great for your pet’s skin and hair.

Moreover, it’s great for both big and small dog breeds. This makes it much easier to buy food, especially if you have all kinds of puppies of different breeds in your home.

Why We Like It:
  • Comes with deboned chicken as its first ingredient
  • Grain-free and gluten-free formulation for easier digestion

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Blue Buffalo Wilderness High Protein Grain Free, Natural Puppy Wet Dog Food

blue buffalo wilderness high protein grain free natural puppy wet food

A Protein-rich Alternative to Dry Puppy Foods

Aside from dry food, Blue Buffalo also offers this wet dog food that is high in protein and mainly made of red meat. It also doesn’t have any wheat and cornmeal (or any other meat by-product). A great thing about this food is that it contains a lot of nutrients that would usually be found in dog supplements. It’s safe, healthy, and overall a great alternative to most dry foods.

Why We Like It:
  • Rich in protein and contains no grains
  • Features real meat as its first ingredient
  • Comes with no by-product meals

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CANIDAE All Life Stages Dry Dog Food

canidae all life stages dog dry food

A Multi-protein Formula for Dogs of All Ages

The Canidae multi-protein formula has a lot of real meat flavors such as lamb, fish, chicken, and turkey. Of course, there is also no wheat, soy, or corn. You also won’t find any by-product of meat in this food. It’s got a very high level of protein that allows your dog to get stronger muscles.

Perhaps the main selling point of this product is that it is vet formulated for dogs of all ages. Therefore, no matter how old your dog gets, you don’t need to switch his food since it has a special formula. That way, your dog doesn’t need to make any changes in his diet even if he gets older.

Why We Like It:
  • Allows you to feed your dog regardless of his age
  • Come with premium ingredients

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Natural Balance Limited Ingredient Dry Dog Food

natural balance limited ingredient dry dog food

An All-natural Formulation Which Can Support Brain Development

Made of natural ingredients, this dog food comes with a lot of DHA and carbohydrates which are great for boosting your puppy’s energy. In fact, this is great for puppies who naturally have high levels of energy because of the high carbs content. The best part is that the carbs all come from very healthy sources such as potatoes.

What’s really great about this dog food product is that it’s small and great for dogs with small jaws. Due to its size, it can fit right into an automatic dog feeder without any problem.

Why We Like It:
  • It contains DHA which can help with your puppy’s neural development
  • The size of the kibble is designed for smaller jaws

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Iams PROACTIVE HEALTH Puppy Dry Dog Food

iams proactive health puppy dry dog food

Ideal for Strong Muscle Growth and Healthy Joint Development

If you want to be sure of what you buy, then this is a pretty good choice. This is because it contains 22 very important nutrients (including organic chicken) that are really beneficial for your puppy’s health. In fact, some of these ingredients can all be found in a dog’s breastmilk.

Without a doubt, this is a great choice for those who have really large-breed puppies. This helps the puppies grow up to be really strong and healthy. You also won’t have to worry about safety because all of the ingredients are vet approved and scrutinized by experts.

Why We Like It:
  • Its real chicken flavor is appealing to most puppies
  • Affordable

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Wellness Complete Health Natural Dry Small Breed Dog Food

wellness complete health natural dry small breed dog food

An All-natural Formula for Small Dog Breeds

This dog food is perfectly made for small breeds. It’s a small sized food that is made of various ingredients such as oats, turkey, and salmon. You won’t find any wheat, soy, by-products, or artificial preservatives. You can surely rely on this product as it was backed by the Wellness Guarantee label. It’s great for your small-sized puppies, giving them the right amount of nutrients that they need.

Why We Like It:
  • Provides your puppy with a complete and balanced nutrition
  • Contains only premium and natural ingredients
  • Designed for small-sized breeds

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Holistic Select Natural Dry Dog Food

holistic select natural dry dog food

Formulated to Provide Your Puppy With a Good Digestive Health

This is yet another great dog food that is good for your puppy’s digestive health. It has a rather unique type of digestive support system along with a plethora of probiotics and prebiotics. Aside from that, it also contains fibers and enzymes.

What’s interesting about this dog food is that it is really great for dogs who have stomach issues. By changing your puppy’s diet to this food, you’ll notice that your dog won’t suffer from diarrhea anymore.

Why We Like It:
  • Made of premium and all-natural ingredients
  • Promotes a healthier digestive health

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Wellness Complete Health Natural Wet Canned Dog Food

wellness complete health natural wet canned dog food

A Holistic Approach to Proper Puppy Growth

Since the Wellness brand focuses on the holistic wellness of your dog, you’ll notice that your dog will have a healthier coat of hair and increased energy level after taking this food.

The best thing about this food is that it’s a great replacement for your dog as he grows older. In fact, this is great for dogs that have just turned one-year-old. Most products of the market are tailored for puppies 6 weeks to 3 months old. This one, however, is still ideal even after your dog has grown a bit.

Why We Like It:
  • Provides your puppy with a complete and balanced nutrition
  • Made only of natural ingredients
  • Comes with high-quality ingredients for optimal brain growth and development

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FAQs

Q: How much food should I feed my puppy?

A: This will depend on how old your puppy is. If your puppy is 3 weeks to 6 months old, you should feed him around 4 times a day. When he reaches 7 months old, you can decrease the amount to just 2 times per day.

Q: What ingredients to avoid?

A: You have to avoid toxins like mycotoxins which can be found in meat and bone meal or meat by-products. You also have to avoid chemicals such as butylated hydroxytoluene, ethoxyquin, and butylated hydroxyanisole as they are preservatives that can damage your dog’s liver and kidney. You may also want to avoid dye, rendered fat, and contaminants.

Q: Should I go for dry or wet food?

A: As mentioned above, you need to consider your dog’s overall appetite and health. If your dog has a bad appetite or can’t drink water, you might want to avoid dry food. You may want to give the best puppy food for sensitive stomach and diarrhea to avoid anything like that. If your dog has a good appetite and can drink water just fine, then you can give dry food.

Q: Can I feed my puppy adult dogs’ food?

A: This is a strict no because puppy food is designed for puppies. There are certain nutrients in adult food that puppies can’t take. Thus, you should make sure that you only buy puppy food for your pup. The pack would usually indicate what ages the dog food is suitable for.

Q: Is it worth to go for grain-free food?

A: Grain-free foods are known to be better alternatives compared to regular dog food because they contain more protein, good fat, and fewer carbs. They’re also better for dogs that have a lot of allergies.

However, grain-free foods aren’t good for dogs that need high energy because of their low carb content. That said, it is worth it to buy grain-free food if it’s right for your dog based on his nutritional needs.

Q: When to stop feeding puppy food and switch to adult dogs’ food?

A: Usually, you can stop giving puppy food once your puppy reaches 7 months for small breeds and 12 months for big breeds.

Conclusion

These are just some of the puppy food brands that you’ll be able to find in the market. These puppy food brands are all well trusted and tested by a lot of dog owners. We have tried to give our dogs these food brands, and we’re pretty happy with the results. Therefore, if you also happen to have a dog or a puppy, then you’ll want to try some of these brands.