The Best Sensitive Stomach Dog Foods

If you're searching for the best sensitive stomach dog foods, you've clicked the right article.

Upset stomachs in dogs are very common because there are many canines with sensitive stomachs and food allergies.

There is no single approach to treating sensitive stomachs in dogs.

But in many cases, simply changing the diet will fix the problem.

Dog owners should expect some trial and error to find which dog food will agree with their pet's stomach.

Vets found that a two-fold approach is most effective: using a restricted, limited ingredient elimination diet and feeding sensitive stomach dog foods with novel ingredients to avoid irritants.

Picking the best sensitive stomach dog foods for your pet must be done carefully.

Usually, foods for a dog's upset stomach are made with fewer ingredients and novel protein sources (duck, venison, and bison).

In this article, we'll discuss how to feed dogs with sensitive stomachs and review top-rated dog foods for upset stomachs.

But if you just want to skip to what brands are the best dog food for sensitive stomachs, here they are.

How to Feed Dogs with Stomach Upset

If your dog is experiencing an upset stomach constantly, you'll first need to figure out what's causing this.

A dog's sensitive stomach is often inherited and cannot be “treated” but has to be managed instead with a change of diet.

Your veterinarian will be the best place to start to figure out the culprit.

Still, research shows that often symptoms of sensitive stomachs in dogs are triggered by a few specific ingredients (or even one single ingredient) and can be fixed simply by avoiding them.

Several studies observed that in most dogs with sensitive stomachs, it's the same few ingredients causing stomach upset: beef, wheat, dairy productslamb, or chicken.

Most sensitive stomach dog foods avoid these ingredients for this very reason.

After you've chosen a dog food brand without trigger ingredients, you may or may not have success with it. Either way, employ the basics of the elimination diet.

Like food allergies in dogs, research shows that an elimination diet is the quickest and surest way to find which ingredients cause stomach upset in a dog so you can avoid them.

Another quantitative study with 251 dogs concluded that this type of careful approach to monitoring your dog's food intake with careful tracking of ingredients and using novel protein sources is extremely effective in fixing the issue permanently.

How to Choose Best Sensitive Stomach Dog Foods

Choosing the Best Food for Dogs with Sensitive Stomach

Food sensitivity in dogs isn't always that easy to notice. Symptoms usually include:

  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Loose stool
  • Excessive gas

After a consultation with a vet, once you know it's not a symptom of a medical condition but rather a food intolerance, start the switch (gradually) towards a sensitive stomach dog food brand that is least likely to agitate your dog's stomach.

The below dog food for upset stomach review contains recipes specifically designed for sensitive stomach conditions.

These recipes are based on how many dogs, statistically, couldn't tolerate the ingredients in regular dog food brands but did fine on these formulations.

Moreover, sensitive stomach dog foods will often also include things that sometimes dogs may be lacking: fiber, minerals and vitamins, probiotics, and more.

Certain ingredients could ease the symptoms of tummy upset in dogs.

Prepare for the transition

You'll be switching to a new dog food gradually over the course of one week.

As your pet adjusts to the new diet, he may still experience symptoms.

After 1-2 weeks of eating new food, if none of the sensitive stomach symptoms disappear, you need to try another formula.

This may sound inconvenient, but every dog is different, thereby you'll have to employ trial and error to get the results.

Consider homemade recipes

Another, albeit more expensive and difficult, approach for dogs with sensitive stomachs is to switch them onto a homemade diet.

This way, you can monitor exactly which ingredients your dog consumes.

There are many good recipes, but this requires careful planning and will usually cost more.

Furthermore, not all vets agree that homemade dog food diets are good, so discuss it with your own.

The below list of best sensitive stomach dog foods contains top vet-recommended brands and those that most pet owners of dogs with upset stomachs found to be effective.

The Best Sensitive Stomach Dog Food Brands

Wellness Complete Health Whitefish
by Wellness Natural Pet Food

  • Rating: 5 stars
  • Type: For food sensitivities
  • First 5 ingredients: Whitefish, Ground Barley, Peas, Menhaden Fish Meal, Oatmeal

Wellness Complete Health Dry Dog Food with Grains,...
3,853 Reviews
Wellness Complete Health Dry Dog Food with Grains,...
  • ALL NATURAL: Created by...
  • NO CORN, WHEAT, OR SOY: Adult...
  • MADE IN USA: Using only the...

Guaranteed Analysis
CRUDE FAT 12.0% min
CRUDE FIBER 4.5% max
MOISTURE 10.0% max
CALCIUM 1.2% min
CALORIES 400 kcal/cup

Placing its sensitive stomach-friendly ingredients aside, it's clear that Wellness dog food for sensitive stomachs has the most approval from pet owners of dogs with sensitive stomachs.

This was also added to our list and rankings of the most effective foods because it provides complete nutrition for dogs without causing reactions even to those with the most problematic sensitivity conditions on paper.

Only authentic and nutritious ingredients are used, carefully sourced, and chosen to produce these tasteful, safe, and nutritious dog foods.

The careful selection of food is important in achieving two things: the allergens and irritants are avoided, and the nutritional value of the food is not compromised.

This first-rate brand contains no corn, soy, wheat, artificial components, or ingredients from China.

It comes in a 30-lb bag and is a proud product of the USA.

What Pet Owners Have To Say

Pet owners who have tried this dog food strongly advise others to try this product first before spending so much on vet bills and medication.

Dogs that have been on Wellness Complete Health Whitefish and Sweet Potato Natural Dry Dog Food have not only reduced their allergic episodes, but they have also become healthier and more active, with much improved and more beautiful coats to boot.

However, critical reviews dwell on the expensive product and their dog not touching the food.

Dogs have preferences, too, and this shows that not all effective food formulations are acceptable to all dogs or their owners.

But overall, this product is highly recommended by most pet owners. They even consider it a miracle food, especially compared to other kibbles that didn’t solve their pets’ problems.


  • Contains no corn, soy, wheat, artificial components, or ingredients from China
  • Made in the U.S.A.
  • Offers complete and balanced nutrition for adult dogs

  • Expensive


CANIDAE Dog Food for Sensitive Stomach Lamb Meal and Rice Formula

  • Rating: 4 half stars
  • Type: For food sensitivities / all life stages / well-balanced
  • First 5 ingredients: Lamb meal, peas, brown rice, barley, oatmeal

CANIDAE? All Life Stages Lamb Meal & Rice Formula...
792 Reviews
CANIDAE? All Life Stages Lamb Meal & Rice Formula...
  • Contains 1- 15 Lb. Bag of...
  • Nutritionally dense kibble...
  • Complete and balanced goodness...
  • Formulated with antioxidants...
  • Canidae is creating a world of...

Guaranteed Analysis
CRUDE FAT 14.5% min
CRUDE FIBER 4.0% max
MOISTURE 10.0% max
CALORIES 468 kcal/cup

With this all-stages food from CANIDAE, dogs with sensitive stomachs benefit from a slew of intentional manufacturing steps the company took.

Here are the benefits:

  • high-quality meat for protein and other wholesome ingredients for a balanced and tasty meal
  • no filler, artificial ingredients, wheat, corn or soy, or allergic-triggering ingredients
  • live probiotic content to aid digestion
  • antioxidants to enhance the immune system
  • Omega 6 and omega 3 are for healthy skin and a beautiful coat.

Sensitive puppies need not go through a difficult transition to food because this same food will continue to be perfect for their condition until their adult and senior ages, and it's made in the USA.

What Pet Owners Have To Say

Pet owners who have recently discovered this product were excited to note that they have also rediscovered their brand-new dog from their previous dull, unhealthy, and sensitive dog to their present healthy, active, and beautifully-coated dog.

Those who were looking for appropriate dog food for sensitive stomachs who had been using CANIDAE Life Stages Dry Dog Food for Puppies, Adults, and Seniors for around a decade say that their dogs never had issues with weight, allergies, lack of appetite, or gastrointestinal conditions.

They feel it is reasonably priced and find no reason to change brands.

However, one pet owner noted that his dog’s breath had a bad smell after being put on this food for a couple of weeks.

But he thought that was a minor thing when he noticed that his dog stopped scratching and his coat started to improve from scraggly to shiny.

This dog food is a great choice, especially for those who own several dogs of different ages and nutritional requirements.

It spares pet parents from the headache of food planning for their pack, including dogs with food sensitivities.

Just for this reason alone, this Canidae formulation is one of the best brands available to pet owners with this problem, and it appears that most have found success with it.


  • Contains live probiotics to aid digestion
  • Has antioxidants to enhance the immune system
  • Includes omega 3 and 6 for healthy skin and coat
  • Suitable for all life stages
  • Made in the U.S.A.

  • Expensive


Hills’s Science Diet Adult Dog Sensitive Stomach Chicken Recipe
by Hill's Science Diet

  • Rating: 4 half stars
  • Type: For food sensitivities/easy to digest
  • First 5 ingredientsChicken, Chicken Meal, Yellow Peas, Cracked Pearled Barley, Brown Rice

Hill's Pet Nutrition Science Diet Dry Dog Food,...
18,163 Reviews
Hill's Pet Nutrition Science Diet Dry Dog Food,...
  • This adult dry dog food...
  • A source of prebiotic fiber to...
  • This dog food is formulated to...
  • Packed with vitamin E &...
  • Made in the USA with global...

Guaranteed Analysis
CRUDE FAT 12.0% min
CRUDE FIBER 4.0% max
CALORIES 366 kcal/cup

Claiming the third spot on our list is this formulation based on ingredients that are easily digestible, balanced nutritionally, and somewhat natural. Protein sources include chicken, lamb, or salmon.

Hill's Science is one of the most vet-recommended dog foods for dogs with sensitive stomachs (and as a brand in general).

These blends from Hill's Science Diet have been carefully balanced with brewer’s rice, peas and grains, apples, carrots, and other vegetables to ensure a completely nourishing food for adult dogs.

While some research shows that chicken may be an irritant, that is not true for all dogs.

Many pet owners have found this third sensitive stomach dog food recipe from Hill's Science to fix their dog's stomach upset issues.

Preparations for puppies and elderly dogs are also available, so dogs in different stages of life have access to the research and development that went into the production of this food brand.

This dog food seemed to be the ultimate solution for most cases of skin irritation, excessive shedding, throwing up, loose stools, weight loss, flatulence, and secondary infections in dogs with sensitive stomachs.

It's no secret that Hill's Science is the most vet-recommended dog food brand out there.

Still, when it comes to sensitive stomach dog food recipes, many pet owners seem to agree as well based on anecdotal evidence and personal experience.

What Pet Owners Have To Say

Going through the sensitive stomach dog food reviews, pet owners were very happy to find the Hill's Science recipe after trying other dog food-sensitive stomach formulations, and that their dog liked to eat and that didn’t cause allergy symptoms and gastrointestinal irritations.

A few dogs, though, developed allergies again after the reformulation of Hill's Science Diet Adult Sensitive Stomach & Skin Dry Dog Food that they were used to, and this has caused frustration to some customers.

Judging from the number of happy customers who rated this product high, it is a must-try for dogs that are over-sensitive to food.

Amazon carries this product and offers a refund if the dog won’t eat the food or if the food does not solve the sensitivity problem.

Notification must be made within 30 days of purchase. There is also no need to return the product to get a refund.


  • Made with ingredients that are easily digestible, balanced nutritionally, and natural
  • Protein sources include chicken, lamb, or salmon
  • Formulas for puppies and senior pets are also available

  • A recent reformulation of the product isn't as good as the previous one


Wellness Natural Limited Ingredient Dog Food Salmon & Potato Recipe
by Wellness Natural Pet Food

  • Rating: 4 half stars
  • Type: For food sensitivities / limited ingredient
  • First 5 ingredients: Salmon, salmon meal, Potatoes, Peas, Dried ground potatoes

Wellness Natural Pet Food Wellness Simple Natural...
2,468 Reviews
Wellness Natural Pet Food Wellness Simple Natural...
  • NO CORN, WHEAT, OR SOY: Adult...
  • MADE IN USA: Using only the...

Guaranteed Analysis
CRUDE FAT 12.0% min
CRUDE FIBER 5.0% max
MOISTURE 11.0% max
CALORIES 446 kcal/cup

Unlike the first rated sensitive stomach formula from Wellness mentioned above, this one is a limited ingredient but is also void of the most common irritants and contains fish as its primary source of protein.

Limited Ingredient dog food itself means this special pet food formula has a smaller number of ingredients that are made up of novel sources so that sensitive dogs are spared from some irritants that could carry allergens and cause an upset stomach.

Several variants and sizes of Wellness Simple foods are available, meaning that even picky dogs should find something they like.

The variants are duck and oatmeal, salmon and peas, lamb and oatmeal, salmon and potato, and turkey and potato.

Each variant contains just a single protein, no gluten or wheat, and only natural ingredients.

Wellness' sensitive stomach dog food is made in the USA like the rest of their line of foods, and its ingredients are all sourced from the US as well.

What Pet Owners Have To Say

Many customers were hopeless about their dog’s condition when they tried this brand as a last resort.

They’ve tried various diets and brands to no avail and were up to the ceiling with medical expenses, so trying another brand didn’t seem like much of a difficult decision.

But since this dog food-sensitive stomach formula was less expensive, it made their shift to Wellness Simple much easier.

Going deeper into sensitive stomach dog food reviews, it appears that most owners with canines had problems with proteins from beef, chicken, and lamb but found that fish is where it's at.

To their surprise, their dogs loved the food and showed less and less of their symptoms.

Itching and patchy skin began to heal, and vomiting and diarrhea became less frequent until there were none.

Some changes in the ingredients of one variant of Wellness Simple Natural Limited Ingredient Dry Dog Food caused one pet owner to stop using the product.

His sickly pooch with digestion issues was quite happy with the salmon/rice variant.

When it seemed like the perfect solution to the dog’s sensitivities, the manufacturer changed the variant to salmon/potato, which wreaked havoc on the dog’s system.

Overall, customers were exceedingly satisfied with this fourth top-rated food from Wellness.


  • Several flavors to appeal to all dogs
  • Each flavor contains only one protein source
  • No gluten or wheat
  • Made with only natural ingredients

  • The sensitive stomach dog food will not appeal to every pet

Blue Buffalo Blue Basic Adult Recipe
by Blue Buffalo

    • Rating: 4 half stars
    • Type: For food sensitivities / limited ingredient
  • First 5 ingredients: Deboned turkey, Potatoes, Turkey Meal, Pea Starch, Peas

Blue Buffalo Basics Skin & Stomach Care, Grain...
397 Reviews
Blue Buffalo Basics Skin & Stomach Care, Grain...
  • Contains one (1) 4lb bag of...

Guaranteed Analysis
CRUDE FAT 12.0% min
CRUDE FIBER 6.0% max
MOISTURE 10.0% max
CALCIUM 0.9% min
CALORIES 357 kcal/cup

The final top-rated option on the list is an alternative from Blue Buffalo, and technically – based on the formulation – it should work great for a dog with an upset stomach.

It's vet-recommended, and many pet owners have reported this to work for their canines.

However, as you'll see browsing some of the related sensitive stomach dog food reviews for this formula, some dogs simply did not enjoy the taste and sometimes refused to eat.

Thus, it may become a gamble – if your canine loves the brand, then this could be a great sensitive stomach dog food option.

If not, you may want to look into the Wellness brand or the few others listed above as alternatives.

As you've been told by your veterinarian or found out doing your own research online, dogs with a sensitive stomach need specially prepared foods that contain none of the usual irritants, and those can be labeled “limited ingredient” formulas.

However, not all limited ingredient formulas will be appropriate.

This 24-lb preparation from Blue Buffalo is made for adult dogs with food sensitivities and uses turkey as its main ingredient.

All ingredients that are used to prepare this product are sourced from the USA. While this is a limited-ingredient recipe, it is nutritionally complete for an adult dog.

A smaller pack of 11 pounds is also available for those who wish to try it.

This fifth-ranked dog food brand also carries formulas for the different stages of life to fit most of all ages.

What Pet Owners Have To Say

Pet owners who have previously tried all sorts of brands of food for their sensitive dogs were happy to finally find one that their pet didn’t adversely react to.

However, on the whole, there appear to be some problems for certain dog owners.

I know this is another one of the most vet-recommended dog food brands. I've personally recommended it myself to dog owners with stomach problems, but I decided to read what others have said.

While some dog owners who purchased this Blue Buffalo found this to be one of the best dog foods for sensitive stomachs they have tried to date, others did not see any changes.

Those who fixed their problems with this recipe had their dogs used to varied conditions, from skin irritations to bloody stools, so they had to narrow down the types of food their dogs could take.

As expected, this wasn’t easy, especially when their dogs seemed to react to most types of meat and ingredients, including natural and organic components.

They soon found that Blue Buffalo Blue Basic Adult Recipe was the only formulation that worked out of all they tried.

That said, a few buyers decided that this was not the perfect food for their dog for various reasons.

Some thought that this was rather pricey, while another said that it didn’t clear up his dog’s allergies.

Still, more customers felt that this is probably one of the best recipes there is, as it did benefit their pet's digestive tract and saved them from costly and frequent visits to the vet.

They were confident that no unknown ingredients or contaminants would enter their dog’s meals.

Their dogs, who had been chronically unhealthy because of food issues, now enjoy a healthy and active life without allergies.


  • Formulated for adult dogs
  • Turkey is the main ingredient
  • All ingredients are sourced in the U.S.A.
  • Limited ingredient recipe

  • This food will not be ideal for every dog
  • Expensive

FAQs on the Best Sensitive Stomach Dog Foods

What are the most easily digestible foods for dogs?

For dogs with sensitive stomachs, a great option is a chicken and rice. This seems to be one of the most palatable for most pups.

The chicken is loaded with a top-notch protein source, along with the essential amino acids dogs need, and rice.

However, a caveat with rice, don't go overboard. Less is more for carbohydrates for our best friends.

Is grain-free better for dogs with sensitive stomachs?

The jury is still out on grain-free foods having any effects on the dog's heart. However, grain-free is a great option if you're in a pinch.

In my opinion, you should find a food that is high in protein and lower in carbohydrates, and you'll be better off.

Although, I personally wouldn't use grain-free as a long-term solution.

Is salmon or lamb better for dogs with sensitive stomachs?

Lamb is the best and most digestible protein source for dogs with sensitive stomachs.

It's a great protein in general, to be honest. I occasionally throw lamb into my dog's diet.

Best Sensitive Stomach Dog Foods: Final Thoughts

Well, that's our list of the best sensitive stomach dog foods we think are best!

Hopefully, this was a helpful guide.

With this, you can start on the right foot when switching to dog food for dogs with sensitive stomachs.

Disclosure: We may earn affiliate commissions at no cost to you from the links on this page. This did not affect our assessment of products. Read more here and find full disclosure here.

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Top Rated Sensitive Stomach Dog Foods

In the last 8 years, Dr. Shores has worked as a clinical veterinarian for dogs, cats, small mammals and non-human primates as well as a writer on the subject of pet health. Her passion is breaking down the intricacies of proper dog health care and dog nutrition.