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2022 Best Dog Food For Liver Disease: Lower in Protein, Copper Levels

Best Dog Food For Liver Disease

The liver plays one of the most important roles in maintaining a dog’s health. It is the liver’s job to filter out toxins from our dogs’ systems. If your pooch has liver disease, it does not necessarily mean that you need to change his or her diet.

In severe cases, your pup may have to go on a special diet that has lower protein and copper levels to help ease the strain on the liver. We have created a list of the best dog food for liver disease, as well as a guide on what qualities to look for.

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About Liver Disease in Dogs

As the liver rids the body of harmful or toxic substances, it is quite prone to damage. A malfunctioning liver can cause a rapid spread of health problems. If left untreated, liver diseases can cause inflammation and cause scar tissue to develop instead of healthy liver cells.

In most cases, early detection has helped dog owners manage liver diseases and prevent them from further progressing. If undetected, they can lead to a serious brain condition called hepatic encephalopathy. 

Through the help of your vet, regular blood tests, medication, and the proper diet can help set you on the right track to helping your dog’s liver.

Signs of Dog’s Liver Disease

Some symptoms of liver problems are quite similar to that of other diseases. Book an appointment with your vet if you notice the following signs:

  • Weight loss
  • Poor appetite or loss of appetite
  • Jaundice (yellowing of skin and whites of eyes)
  • Increased thirst
  • Vomiting or diarrhea
  • Behavioral changes
  • Walking like he or she is drunk
  • Excessive drooling
  • Lack of energy or depression (staring at the wall or pressing the head against a wall)
  • Dark-colored urine
  • Pale gums
  • Buildup of fluid in the abdomen that could be mistaken for sudden weight gain

OUR TOP 3 PICKS FOR BEST DOG FOOD FOR LIVER DISEASE

[year] Best Dog Food For Liver Disease: Lower in Protein, Copper Levels 2
  • Made with egg-based protein
  • Great for seniors dogs as well
  • Excellent choice for canines with sensitive stomachs
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[year] Best Dog Food For Liver Disease: Lower in Protein, Copper Levels 4
  • Customizable diet for dogs
  • Vet-recommended formula
  • 50% OFF first order
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[year] Best Dog Food For Liver Disease: Lower in Protein, Copper Levels 2
  • Keeps liver function normal
  • Energy-dense dog food
  • Low in copper and purines
VIEW LATEST PRICE →See Customer Reviews →

Do You Need to Change Your Dog’s Diet?

According to veterinary nutritionist Cailin Heinze, VMD, DACVM of Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University, “A change in liver enzyme values on blood work does not necessarily mean that a dietary change is appropriate.” There are only two reasons that a change in diet may be necessary for your pup.

1. Severe Liver Disease and Protein Intolerance

When the liver disease has progressed to liver failure, this means that the organ is no longer able to do its job of filtering harmful substances and preventing them from being absorbed by body tissues.

Advanced liver disease can lead to hepatic encephalopathy – a condition that affects the whole brain and alters its structure or how it works. It causes changes in mental function.

When your dog’s liver breaks down amino acids to separate the nitrogen, it produces ammonia which is excreted through the urine. If your dog suffers from liver failure, ammonia and other toxins will stay in the bloodstream and could cause neurological problems.

This is where changing your dog's diet can help. By reducing the total amount of protein intake of the dog, it also reduces the levels of some toxins that the liver would normally filter out.

The protein levels recommended will depend on what the specific dog can tolerate. The vet will help you determine the ideal protein levels for your pup.

2. Excess Copper in the Liver

A genetic condition found in certain breeds of dogs such as Bedlington terriers, causes some dogs to have excessive copper build-up. This can damage liver cells which can lead to severe liver disease or complete liver failure. 

Chronic Hepatitis in Doberman Pinschers is another copper-associated disease that is inherited. It can affect middle-aged to older pups, with female dogs more likely to be affected. A low-copper diet may be the best dog food for such pets.

Best Dog Food for Liver Disease

IMAGE PRODUCT  
[year] Best Dog Food For Liver Disease: Lower in Protein, Copper Levels 7
The Farmer's Dog - Chicken Recipe
  • Customizable diet for dogs
  • Vet-recommended formula
  • 50% OFF first order
50% OFF first order
[year] Best Dog Food For Liver Disease: Lower in Protein, Copper Levels 8
AvoDerm Vegetarian Recipe
  • Grain-inclusive pâté
  • Doesn't contain corn or wheat
  • Keeps healthy skin and shiny coat
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[year] Best Dog Food For Liver Disease: Lower in Protein, Copper Levels 9
Weruva Green Eggs & Chicken
  • Canned food perfect for all adult breeds
  • High protein, less carbs
  • With added vitamins and minerals
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[year] Best Dog Food For Liver Disease: Lower in Protein, Copper Levels 10
Hill's Prescription Diet l/d Liver Care
  • Helps recover and regenerate liver tissues
  • Contains vitamins E and C to reduce cell oxidation
  • Boost your dog’s immune system
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[year] Best Dog Food For Liver Disease: Lower in Protein, Copper Levels 11
SquarePet Square Egg Meat Free Formula
  • Made with egg-based protein
  • Great for seniors dogs as well
  • Excellent choice for canines with sensitive stomachs
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[year] Best Dog Food For Liver Disease: Lower in Protein, Copper Levels 12
Halo Holistic Chicken-Free Garden of Vegan
  • All components are plant-based
  • Vegetables and fruits are non-GMO
  • Doesn't lack flavor or nutrients
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[year] Best Dog Food For Liver Disease: Lower in Protein, Copper Levels 13
Royal Canin Veterinary Diet Hepatic
  • Keeps liver function normal
  • Energy-dense dog food
  • Low in copper and purines
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[year] Best Dog Food For Liver Disease: Lower in Protein, Copper Levels 14
Addiction Country Chicken & Apricot Dinner
  • Contains flaxseed, apple, rosemary and spinach
  • Promotes proper digestion
  • Keeps skin and coat beautiful
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  1. The Farmer's Dog – Chicken Recipe
  2. AvoDerm Vegetarian Recipe
  3. Weruva Green Eggs & Chicken
  4. Hill's Prescription Diet l/d Liver Care
  5. SquarePet Square Egg Meat Free Formula
  6. Halo Holistic Chicken-Free Garden of Vegan
  7. Royal Canin Veterinary Diet Hepatic
  8. Addiction Country Chicken & Apricot Dinner
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1. The Farmer’s Dog Fresh Chicken Recipe

First 5 ingredients: USDA Chicken, Brussels Sprouts, USDA Chicken Liver, Bok Choy, Broccoli

[year] Best Dog Food For Liver Disease: Lower in Protein, Copper Levels 15

The Farmer’s Dog Chicken Recipe is a fresh-cooked dog food that is formulated by vets and veterinary nutritionists according to your dog’s needs. The customizable meals mean that your pup can get freshly-made homestyle meals with the right balance of nutrients that she needs. 

All you have to do is fill out their questionnaire with your dog’s information. They will require your dog’s age, breed, activity level, ideal weight, food sensitivities, or any special dietary requirements.

So don’t be alarmed if you see chicken liver listed in the first five ingredients of their standard recipe. Ingredients your pooch can’t have can certainly be omitted from the recipe.

As they take the ideal weight of your dog into account, they can help formulate recipes that can address weight loss, which is a common symptom of liver issues.

Made of only natural ingredients, the grain-free recipes contain only fresh produce sourced from reputable food suppliers, local farms, and other human food purveyors that meet USDA standards. 

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The fresh dog food also comes pre-portioned according to the nutritional and caloric needs of your pup. No need to weigh or measure the food to ensure that you are keeping your pup’s protein levels within the right range.

The Farmer’s Dog only makes grain-free food at this time. If your dog requires grains, you can add oats, brown rice, or other wholesome grains to the fresh food.

However, it is unclear at this time if they make vegetarian meals upon request. The current recipes they offer are chicken, beef, pork, and turkey.

Pros:

  • Customizable to suit your dog’s nutritional needs
  • Made of high-quality, human-grade natural ingredients
  • USDA chicken
  • Pre-portioned for convenience
  • Vet and nutritionist formulated fresh-cooked food
  • Meal subscriptions can be changed as needed

Cons:

  • Expensive
  • No-grain inclusive options

2. AvoDerm Vegetarian Recipe

First 5 ingredients: Water, Soybean Meal, Carrots, Rice, Canola Oil

[year] Best Dog Food For Liver Disease: Lower in Protein, Copper Levels 16

AvoDerm Vegetarian canned recipe is a grain-inclusive pate that is nutritionally complete and balanced for adult pups. Soybean meal is the main source of protein in this wet food. 

According to the Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University, just like eggs, soy contains high-quality proteins that will provide the necessary nutrition while being more gentle to a failing liver.

This canned dog food is not too high in protein at 7.5%. Rice is its main source of easy-to-digest carbs, while superfoods such as carrots, blueberries, and cranberries provide soluble fiber, vitamins, and antioxidants that have antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties.

 Avocado meal and avocado oil are also added to the mix along with canola oil. They are all rich in omega fatty acids that help reduce inflammation in the liver. They also promote healthy skin and shiny coats in dogs.

This vegetarian pate for adult pups has received numerous rave reviews from pet parents. Many of them purchased this wet food for their dogs’ medical issues.

The issues are usually renal or kidney issues, allergies, liver, and digestive system issues. Some bought this product as an alternative to prescription food or to use in rotation with prescription food.

The majority have been quite pleased with the result. An owner of a dog with liver issues says that this food is a lifesaver as her pup can no longer eat meat. The dog is no longer having seizures due to liver failure since being switched to this vegetarian Avoderm food. 

The negative comments are mostly about the cans not being full, or that the pate is a bit on the dry side. A few spoonfuls of warm water will soften the pate.

Pros:

  • Vegetarian – soybean meal is the main protein source
  • Low to moderate protein levels
  • Made of highly digestible ingredients
  • Support’s dog’s digestion
  • High in antioxidants from superfoods like blueberries, cranberries
  • Omega 3 and 6 fatty acids from avocado, canola oil, and flaxseed
  • Highly palatable 

Cons:

  • Reports of some cans not being full
  • Cans don’t have the easy-open tab

3. Weruva Green Eggs & Chicken

First 5 ingredients: Chicken (Boneless, Skinless, White Breast), Water Sufficient for Processing, Potato Starch, Green Pea, Dried Egg

[year] Best Dog Food For Liver Disease: Lower in Protein, Copper Levels 17

Weruva Green Eggs & Chicken with Chicken, Egg, & Greens in Gravy is a grain-free diet for pups who love a chunky stew. Made of chicken and dried egg, this canned food is perfect for dogs with liver disease who are able to tolerate some meat in their diet. 

Unlike red meat, chicken and eggs don’t have high levels of compounds or amino acids that can be harmful to dogs with liver disease. It has boneless, skinless white chicken breast and contains no organ meat. At 8% protein, it is still within the low-moderate range for wet food. 

This saucy stew is also low in fat at only 1.3%. Sunflower seed oil provides the omega fatty acids dogs need for healthy skin, coat, and brain function. They also have properties that can help reduce inflammation in the liver.

No antibiotics or added hormones are used in any of the ingredients. Free from artificial enhancers like flavors, colors, and preservatives, this gourmet stew will not add unnecessary strain on dogs’ livers.

According to feedback from pet parents, this chicken and eggs recipe is beloved by their pups. They get excited when they hear the can being opened. They enjoy the meaty chunks and slurp up the gravy. Tasty food is important as loss of appetite is one of the symptoms of liver disease.

The dog owners love that the ingredients are recognizable and remarked that it looks and smells like human food.

Pros:

  • High-quality plant and animal protein sources: chicken, eggs, and peas
  • No organ meat
  • Natural ingredients
  • Low to moderate protein levels
  • No artificial additives; carrageenan-free
  • Highly palatable

Cons:

  • Reports of some dented cans

4. Hill's Prescription Diet l/d Liver Care 

First 5 ingredients: Water, Rice, Chicken Fat, Soybean Meal, Soybean Oil

[year] Best Dog Food For Liver Disease: Lower in Protein, Copper Levels 18

Hill's Prescription Diet l/d Liver Care is specially formulated by vets to support a dog’s liver health by helping it regenerate and repair itself.

Its low protein, copper, and fat content significantly reduce the workload that the liver normally has with regular dog food. A vet’s prescription is required to purchase this dog food for liver problems.

The main protein source in this prescription formula is soybean meal with additional protein from eggs. It is free of chicken meal.

While most pet parents try to avoid giving dog foods with soy, in cases of liver disease or liver failure, soy is a better option compared to red meats, organ meats, and fish. It does not have the high levels of certain amino acids that will put more strain on a liver that has severe damage or has already failed.

Chicken fat and fish oil give this liver care food a boost of flavor as well as omega fatty acids needed by dogs for many aspects of their overall health. 

It has added antioxidants, vitamin E, and vitamin C to help reduce cell oxidation and promote the regeneration of healthy liver cells.

They also boost your dog’s immune system. L-carnitine is included for a more efficient conversion of fat into energy and to maintain normal fat metabolism in the liver. This pate also has L-arginine – an amino acid that helps the immune system and reduces inflammation.

This Liver Care wet food has done wonders for numerous dogs with liver diseases, according to reviews for this product. It has helped several dogs who had elevated liver enzymes.

The dogs who were previously suffering from rapid loss of energy have reportedly shown renewed interest in going on walks and had increased activity levels after being switched to this prescription food.

Most of the negative comments were from buyers whose dogs did not touch this dog food for liver care. The rest were about the consistency of the pate.

According to several buyers, it was quite dry and grainy. A few of them pour a bit of water to moisten the pate and mash it with a fork. That said, all of the buyers whose dogs ate the food were quite please with the result.

Another complaint raised by some pet parents is that L/D is not easy to find. It is a prescription food and will not be as widely available as regular Hill’s Science Diet products. However, it seems that the company is experiencing some supply issues.

Pros:

  • Specially formulated for dogs with liver diseases
  • Low protein, copper, sodium, and fat levels help the liver cells recover and regenerate
  • Soy and eggs are the protein sources
  • High-quality fat sources: chicken fat and fish oil
  • Has antioxidants, zinc, vitamin E, vitamin C for healthy immune system and cells 
  • L-carnitine to maintain normal fat metabolism in the liver
  • L-arginine for inflammation reduction
  • Excellent feedback from owners of dogs with liver disease

Cons:

  • Dry, grainy consistency
  • Not as easy to find compared to other dog foods
  • No easy-open tab

5. SquarePet Square Egg Meat Free Formula

First 5 ingredients: Whole Egg, Whey Protein Concentrate, Quinoa, Brown Rice, Tapioca

[year] Best Dog Food For Liver Disease: Lower in Protein, Copper Levels 19

SquarePet Square Egg Meat Free Formula is a grain-inclusive food suitable for dogs of all breeds, sizes, and life stages.

This meat-free dry dog food is perfect for dogs with liver diseases that don’t require a very low protein diet. At 25% protein, this egg recipe has moderate levels of protein without the compounds that overwork the liver.

The mighty egg is one of the most ideal protein sources for dogs with liver disease. It provides the high-quality protein that dogs need without overworking the liver with high levels of compounds such as purines. 

Organ meat which our dogs love, and are found in a lot of dog foods are quite rich in purines. Whey protein is another bioavailable or easily digested protein source that this recipe has.

Highly digestible carb and dietary fiber sources are used in this recipe. It has quinoa, brown rice, and tapioca. Vitamins and antioxidants that support cellular health and boost the immune system are provided by superfoods such as coconut, cranberries, blueberries, kale, and carrots.

This dry dog food can be served as a complete meal on its own, or as a base mix if you wish to add fresh food to your pup’s diet. This best dog food can be a great inclusion in a rotational diet, prescription diet, and/ or plant-based dog food.

While the brand may not be as popular as other commercial dog foods, those who purchased it were quite pleased with the results it was able to deliver.

One buyer purchased it for her dog with urinary issues was pleasantly surprised that he dogs love this egg-based meal. It also saves her from having to prepare egg-based homemade food from scratch. She credits Square Egg for giving her pup a glossy coat.

Many dog owners have commented that their pups’ coats looked so healthy and lustrous since switching to this food. Some of the most common reasons for switching to egg-based dog food are allergies, renal, and urinary issues. 

Much like liver disease, most dogs who have renal and urinary issues require a low-purine diet such as this.

The dogs seem to love the taste of the kibbles, which are quite small and easy to chew. The pieces are not as crunchy as regular kibble and are ideal for senior dogs.

So far, there have been no negative comments on this food aside from one Amazon customer whose dog did not like the egg recipe. 

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Pros:

  • Bioavailable protein sources: whole egg and whey protein
  • Moderate protein levels
  • Highly digestible
  • High palatability
  • Antioxidants from superfoods like coconut, blueberries, cranberries, kale, carrots
  • Wholesome grains quinoa, brown rice
  • Prebiotics for digestive system support
  • Easy to chew kibbles

Cons:

  • Not recommended if your dog’s protein intake requirement is very low

6. Halo Holistic Chicken-Free Garden of Vegan

First 5 ingredients: Green Peas, Chickpeas, Pearled Barley, Oat Groats, Pea Protein

[year] Best Dog Food For Liver Disease: Lower in Protein, Copper Levels 20

Halo Holistic Chicken-Free Garden of Vegan is a grain-inclusive dry food that is formulated to provide complete and balanced nutrition for adult dogs of all breeds and sizes.

It is one of the two dry vegan recipes from the brand. The meatless and egg-free recipe is ideal for pups who require a vegetarian diet. It has all the essential vitamins needed by adult dogs.

The main sources of protein in this recipe are green peas and chickpeas. It is not too high in protein at only 20%. Its fairly low fat content also helps in keeping the liver from being overworked. 

While its copper content in mg/kg is not specified on the packaging, it has copper proteinate and copper sulfate at the bottom section of the list of mineral supplements it has. The absence of meat and organs also contributes to lower copper levels.

Made with only sustainably sourced ingredients, this vegan recipe has wholesome grains such as pearled barley and oat groats as its highly nutritious sources of fiber and carbs.

It also has antioxidant-rich superfoods like sweet potatoes, dried kelp, apples, carrots, cranberries, and blueberries. These fruits and veggies are loaded with nutrients that help strengthen the immune system and reduce inflammation.

This food for liver care has sunflower oil, canola oil, and flaxseed oil as its sources of essential fatty acids. The omega 3 and 6 fatty acids found in these plant-based oils support skin, coat, and cognitive function. 

This vegan recipe has received rave reviews from owners of dogs with liver problems. It's been called a lifesaver for significantly improving their pups’ liver enzymes. Other reported improvements are no more vomiting, healthy skin and coats, as well as increased energy levels.

Several of them discovered this recipe after their dogs rejected other brands of vegetarian dog food, while the rest were trying to find a more affordable alternative to prescription diets. The dogs seem to find the vegan kibbles quite palatable. 

This dry food is also being used by pet parents as a base mix for their dog’s food for liver health. Common toppers used are low-sodium dairy products like ricotta cheese, cottage cheese, and yogurt. Probiotics in yogurt can also help improve your dog’s overall health. Damaged livers need all the help they can get.

The naysayers for this product mostly complained that their dogs did not like it. Others stated that it is quite expensive. Another complained that the bag was not resealable.

Pros:

  • Meat-free proteins: green peas and chickpeas
  • Lower protein content at 20%
  • Low-fat
  • Wholesome grains
  • Antioxidants from superfoods for immune system support
  • L-carnitine: beneficial to dogs with fatty liver disease, and for better fat metabolism
  • Great feedback from pet parents of dogs with liver problems

Cons:

  • Expensive
  • Bags are not resealable
  • Too much fiber for some dogs

7. Royal Canin Veterinary Diet Hepatic

First 5 ingredients: Brewers Rice, Corn, Brown Rice, Soy Protein Isolate, Chicken Fat

[year] Best Dog Food For Liver Disease: Lower in Protein, Copper Levels 21

Royal Canin Veterinary Diet Hepatic dry dog food is a prescription food specially formulated for dogs suffering from liver problems.

Its protein, copper, and sodium levels are optimized to reduce the strain on the liver. It is fortified with nutrients that help support your dog’s liver function. A vet’s authorization is required to purchase this product.

Soy protein isolate is the main source of protein in this dog food for liver problems. Compared to red meat, organs, and fish, soy is much lower in copper and purines. It will not overwork the liver. Instead, this food will aid in the regeneration of healthy liver cells.

According to Royal Canin, this prescription diet has high energy density, which helps reduce necessary food volume in dogs with poor appetites. Loss of appetite is one of the telltale signs of liver problems in dogs. It is designed to be highly palatable to entice dogs with poor appetites.

Enriched with antioxidants, this Hepatic formula will not only help support the immune system but will also promote good cellular health. 

This veterinary diet has received very high ratings from owners of pets with canine liver disease and copper-associated conditions.

According to them, the liver enzymes of their dogs were effectively improved by switching to this formula. Their dogs are now more active, and just overall noticeably happier.

Based on the feedback, this dry food for liver support seems to be a hit among numerous dogs. Despite being vegetable-based, the pups find it quite tasty – something that is very important in foods designed to address health issues.

However, a few owners of small breed dogs mentioned that the kibbles are a bit too large for their little pooches. The others had picky dogs who simply were not fans of the soy-based food. The rest stated that this food is quite costly and is on backorder a lot.

Pros:

  • Vet formulated specifically to address liver problems
  • Low protein and copper level
  • Soy-based
  • High palatability
  • Antioxidants
  • L-carnitine for better fat metabolism
  • Great feedback from owners of dogs with liver problems

Cons:

  • Expensive
  • Kibble size may be too big for small breed dogs
  • Not always available

8. Addiction Country Chicken & Apricot Dinner

First 5 ingredients: Chicken, Oats, Potatoes, Carrots, Flaxseed

[year] Best Dog Food For Liver Disease: Lower in Protein, Copper Levels 22

Addiction Country Chicken & Apricot Dinner raw dehydrated dog food is a grain-free diet formulated to provide complete and proper nutrition to adult pups of all breeds and sizes.

Compared to most raw dehydrated dog foods, this chicken recipe is quite low in protein at only 22%. This makes it ideal for dogs who are able to tolerate low to moderate protein levels.

This chicken and apricot dinner can be great for dogs who were previously on a raw diet. The air-drying process ensures that all harmful bacteria are eliminated while retaining the food’s high nutritional value.

Chicken is one of the protein sources that can be given to some dogs with liver problems. It does not have the higher copper and purine levels of other animal proteins such as red meat, offal, and fish. 

Packed with superfoods high in vitamins and antioxidants, this dehydrated recipe has carrots, flaxseed, apples, apricot, papaya, and others. These antioxidants help give dogs with liver disease an immune system boost. They also support the healthy regeneration of cells that is needed for good liver health.

To prepare this dehydrated dog food, simply mix 1 part food with 1 part warm water and mix. No need to wait. Simply stir and serve. You can also adjust the consistency according to your preference by adding or decreasing the amount of water.

This dehydrated food is a hit among many dogs with various food sensitivities. They gobble up the rehydrated food and lick their bowls clean. Pet owners love that it is so easy to prepare.

It gives their pups the rich nutrition of a raw diet without the risk of harmful bacteria, and the inconvenience of making the food from scratch. 

However, some pooches were not fans of the rehydrated food’s texture. A few buyers were expecting chunkier food but found that it looked more like oatmeal.

Pros:

  • Low to moderate protein levels at 22%
  • Raw chicken is the main protein source
  • Free from chicken meal, organ meat
  • Healthy fat source: coconut oil
  • Antioxidants from superfoods and vitamin E for good cellular health
  • Combines raw nutrition with the convenience of kibble

Cons:

  • Not all dogs like the consistency of the rehydrated food

Best Supplement for Dogs with Liver Disease

Nutramax Denamarin Tablets Liver Supplement 

[year] Best Dog Food For Liver Disease: Lower in Protein, Copper Levels 23

Nutramax Denamarin Tablets Liver Supplement for Dogs are tablets specially formulated to support the liver function of dogs. Like worming tablets, the dosages vary according to the dog’s weight.

Denamarin comes in dosages for small dogs and cats, medium-sized, and large-sized dogs. Make sure to purchase the dosage that matches your dog’s weight.

According to Nutramax, this vet-formulated supplement helps to increase levels of a potent antioxidant called glutathione. Glutathione aids a dog’s liver health by detoxifying the liver. It also promotes liver cell repair and regeneration.

It also has Silibyn – a bioavailable form of milk thistle which supports liver function by helping maintain a healthy oxidative balance. The SAMe (S-Adenosylmethionine) in the supplements not only supports liver health but also promotes a healthy brain function by acting as a neuroprotector.

Based on feedback from buyers, Denamarin seems to help in stabilizing the liver enzyme levels of dogs with liver problems. Dogs have shown significant improvements in their bloodwork within a few months or even weeks for some dogs. 

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Used in conjunction with medication and one of the best dog food products for liver problems, this supplement has been proven capable of delivering great results. These are all vital in making a dog’s liver healthy again.

Some dog owners do find it difficult to give their pups the tablets as the instructions state that they should not be split or crumbled. If you prefer to give your dog chews, Nutramax also has Denamarin Chewable Tablets Liver Supplement for Dogs. 

Pros:

  • Aids dog’s liver repair
  • Contains Silibyn – promotes liver detoxification
  • Has helped numerous dogs with liver diseases improve their liver enzyme levels
  • Noticeably healthy and shiny coats on dogs
  • Supports brain health – beneficial to dogs suffering from brain disease-related conditions

Cons

  • Can be hard to administer to some dogs
[year] Best Dog Food For Liver Disease: Lower in Protein, Copper Levels 24

What to Look For in the Best Dog Food for Liver Disease?

After getting advice from your vet on what your pup specifically needs to address her liver disease, it’ll be easier to narrow down the search for the right food.

That being said, feeding a dog with liver disease may still involve a lot of trial and error. The lowered protein levels required may mean the absence of some of your pooch’s favorite meaty flavors.

If your dog’s liver condition is not copper-associated or is not at a severe level, then chances are your vet may not even require you to make changes to your pup’s meals. Here are some qualities to look for if a diet overhaul is needed:

The Right Protein Sources

Some protein sources may require the liver to work more in filtering out toxins or may contribute to the production of more ammonia. Red meat, organ meats, and fish have higher levels of some amino acids that could be harmful to dogs with liver disease. 

The best dog foods should ideally have high-quality protein sources like eggs, plant-based ones like soy, or chicken. Chicken meal may not be the best source in this case as they have more concentrated protein levels than fresh chicken. 

“Many do better on plant-based protein or egg- and dairy-based proteins, both because of differences in the amino acid composition and differences in the tissues that the protein is coming from,” says Dr. Heinze. You can give your dog healthy treats made with dairy products such as ricotta cheese, goat cheese, or yogurt.

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The Right Protein Levels

Your vet can help you determine the right protein percentage for your dog’s liver disease diet. This will depend on the severity of the liver disease, its cause, and the medications that your dog is taking. 

Copper Levels

If copper toxicity is the main problem, a low-copper diet along with medication can help reduce the excess copper in the liver. Prescription dog food for chronic liver disease are all low in copper and also low in protein. These diets are some of the best dog foods for various liver problems.

However, not all dogs who need a low-copper diet also need a low-protein diet. In this instance, the vet may recommend a homemade fresh diet for dog liver disease to enable you to control the right copper and protein levels your pup needs.

There are also non-prescription commercial dog food products that contain protein sources known to be lower in copper and phosphorus. Again, red meat should be avoided. Opt for foods with eggs, soy, or chicken instead for better liver function. Together with medication and supplements, these foods can help improve your dog’s liver condition.

[year] Best Dog Food For Liver Disease: Lower in Protein, Copper Levels 25

Moderate or Lower Sodium Levels

An excess in sodium can overwork the liver. This is why it is recommended that the sodium levels of your dog’s meals should also be restricted. 

Free of Artificial Additives

The best dog foods to choose are those without artificial flavors, colors, and preservatives. Remember that an unhealthy liver is not capable of ridding the body of toxins. Feeding foods high in such additives can put more strain on the liver function.

Hydration

All dogs should have access to fresh, clean water at all times. In the case of dogs with liver disease, it is recommended to increase their water intake. You can add more moisture to your dog’s diet by feeding wet or fresh food to improve her liver function.

Wet food does not need the liver to work as hard. It is also much easier to digest because of its high moisture content. If your dog is fond of his dry food, you don’t need to feed her just wet food. You can feed wet food as a dry food topper or switch some meals with wet food.

Low-sodium homemade broths can also increase your pup’s water intake. You can serve it in between meals or pour it over dog food.

Conclusion

There are several factors to consider when choosing the right food for dogs with any medical condition. However, unlike some health issues, liver disease is something that will definitely require a proper veterinary diagnosis. Your vet’s guidance on the proper diet can help set your pup on the right track to healthier liver cells.

Whichever type of liver problem your dog has, your vet is likely to run tests to determine the right balance of nutrients that your pup needs. While prescription liver support food covers both low protein and low copper requirements, in reality, no one food will be ideal for each dog with liver disease.

In mild to moderate liver damage cases, dogs usually don’t even need to change their diets. The food your dog will need will depend on her liver enzyme levels, the severity of the disease, protein and copper tolerance levels, and medication among other things.

Whether your vet recommended a fresh diet with chicken, eggs, or even vegetarian homemade dog food, we hope that our list helps you in the search for the best dog food for liver disease.

[year] Best Dog Food For Liver Disease: Lower in Protein, Copper Levels 26
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