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10 Best (Top Rated) Dog Foods for Chihuahuas in 2019

Your tiniest companion has a lot of personality. Chihuahuas are known for their bravado, small stature and pretty much define the term “purse dog.” They’re a national symbol for Mexico and is one of the oldest breeds of dog in the New World.

We’ve got our favorite foods for a Chihuahua that can get you started. Let’s take a look at what it takes to keep your tiniest best friend happy and healthy for a (potentially long) lifetime.

6 Special Dietary and Nutritional Considerations of Chihuahuas

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Chihuahuas have some special considerations that you’ll want to think about when picking out a quality food. This special breed requires extra care to keep their small bodies healthy and thriving.

  • Weight: Chihuahuas are extremely prone to obesity due to their small stature and generally average lifestyle in terms of activity. It’s easy to overfeed a Chihuahua, especially if your pup is extra lazy. A high-protein dog food is best for a Chihuahua who competes in dog sports or is always on the go. Remember that even one extra pound can put stress on a Chi’s body.
  • Eye health: Chihuahuas are known for their big, protruding eyes. Although a Chihuahua’s eyes make them especially difficult to resist when begging, their eyes can also be a source of concern. Infection and visual disorders can be a problem for this tiny breed, but many dog foods offer vitamins to supplement eye health.
  • Knee issues: Many small breed dogs fall victim to a luxating patella, where the knee cap slips out of place. Chihuahuas are especially vulnerable to patellar luxation if they carry excess weight. Feeding your Chi the proper amount of food, exercising them and considering a diet with joint supplements will help avoid any problems with their knees.
  • Dental hygiene: Chihuahuas have a lot of teeth crammed into their tiny mouths. Dental issues are common among this adorable breed, so it’s important that pet parents stay on top of oral hygiene. Crunchy, textured kibble can help clean teeth and gums to prevent future dental concerns. As a toy breed, your Chihuahua will need special care when it comes to their small mouth and teeth.
  • Intervertebral disc disease (IVDD): Small breeds such as Chihuahuas commonly suffer from IVDD. This disorder causes immense pain in a dog’s back, and it can be crippling. Keeping your Chihuahua on a healthy diet that supports bone and joint health can be very helpful. Of course it’s also imperative to keep your Chi at a healthy weight so they are less likely to get IVDD, or feel the effects of it.
  • Heart problems: Although the Chihuahua has a big heart metaphorically speaking, their heart is actually incredibly tiny and fragile. Picking out a dog food with heart healthy properties will be best for your Chi.

Since your Chihuahua is going to eat a tiny amount of food per day, choosing a food with protein from whole sources is a must. There’s not a lot of space to mess around with empty calories, so complete proteins are important. Combine these with complex carbohydrates that won’t spike blood sugar and plenty of fiber to maintain weight and digestive health.

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5 Key Nutritional Needs of a Chihuahua Puppy

Your Chihuahua puppy needs to eat a special food that will promote their overall growth and wellbeing. Diet is essential for proper growth of your new pooch, so consider their following nutritional needs:

  • Brain development: Every dog parent wants their new puppy to develop to their fullest potential. Most foods for Chihuahua puppies contain DHA for exceptional brain and cognitive development.
  • Strong bones and joints: Chihuahuas are fragile enough due to their precious stature, so it’s important that your puppy grows strong bones and joints. A quality puppy food will contain vitamins and nutrients to promote such growth.
  • Essential fatty acids: Purchasing a dog food that is formulated with omega fatty acids will support your puppy’s delicate skin and coat.
  • Small kibble size: Chihuahuas are the smallest recognized dog breed even as full grown adults. Puppies have the need for extra-tiny kibble bits that their small mouths can handle chewing, and their tummies can handle digesting.
  • Immune support: As your Chihuahua puppy grows, immune support is crucial. Your pup will live a long, incredible life if they are healthy from the insides out. A well-cared for and developed immune system is a great starting point for your puppy to live out their best life.

Most puppy foods are formulated with vitamins, minerals and antioxidants which specifically target vision and immune system health. Dry dog food is going to be best for your Chihuahua puppy’s dental health (when they reach an appropriate age), as it helps reduce tartar while cleaning the teeth. If your Chihuahua puppy already has a health concern to take into consideration, you’ll want to pick out a food for them based on those needs.

Chihuahua Puppy Feeding Chart

While your vet is going to be the very best help for setting up an appropriate feeding schedule and food amount for your Chihuahua, here’s a general idea of how you should feed your dog beginning at their puppy stage:

  • 6 Week Old Chihuahua: Ideally your Chihuahua should still be nursing from their mother at 6 weeks old to ensure they are receiving the proper macronutrients for growth. Now’s the time to start transitioning your Chi to a quality diet that is comparable to the nutrition they were receiving from their mother’s milk.
  • 10 Week Old Chihuahua: Your Chihuahua should be fully weaned of their mother by the time they are around 8 weeks old. By 10 weeks old you should be increasing the amount of puppy food you offer your Chihuahua. It’s best to start with an 85% wet food diet, then slowly add more kibble as your Chi grows.
  • 12 Week Old Chihuahua: By 12 weeks old, your Chihuahua can be completely transitioned to a dry food. Your Chihuahua can be free fed at this age to ensure they are maintaining weight and getting all of the nutrients they need for continued growth.
  • 3 Month Old Chihuahua: Chihuahuas are still puppies at 3 months old. Continue offering a puppy diet, as their bones and brain are developing.
  • 5 Month Old Chihuahua: While some dog breeds are fully grown adults by 5 months of age, Chihuahuas are not. Now’s the time to start measuring your Chi’s meals. Follow the feeding guidelines per the brand of food you choose.
  • 1 Year Old Chihuahua: Your 1 year old Chihuahua is now an adult. You can transition them to a food for adult dogs or one for “all life stages.” It’s crucial to meticulously measure your Chihuahua’s daily meals at this point, as weight gain can now become a serious problem, especially if your pup no longer has any puppy energy.

Overall Best Dog Food for Chihuahuas

Ollie Healthy Turkey Feast Recipe

Key Benefits:

  • Built around heart-healthy turkey
  • Veterinarian-crafted recipe
  • Fresh and delivered to your door
  • No artificial flavors or fillers

Overall Best Dog Food for Chihuahuas  – Ollie is human-grade dog food delivered straight to your front door. This fresh food is the most premium choice for your Chihuahua, as you could eat it with a fork yourself! Feeding your pup the healthy turkey recipe will be like offering them a Thanksgiving feast every day of the year. This heart-healthy formula is made with vitamin-rich pumpkins and carrots, as well as superfoods like blueberries and chia seeds.

The Ollie Healthy Turkey Feast Recipe is packed full with natural antioxidants, vitamins and essential nutrients. The food doesn’t contain any soy, corn or wheat. Ollie recipes are veterinarian formulated, so you can trust that your Chihuahua is eating a safe, quality meal. Although pet parents will pay for the highest-quality with Ollie, convenience is also a factor. Ollie comes delivered straight to your door, and all you’ll need to do is restock your freezer!

Pros:

  • Human-grade dog food
  • Delivered to your door on a reoccurring basis
  • Minimally processed
  • Made with healthy, natural ingredients and super foods

Cons:

  • Ollie is the priciest Chihuahua food on our list

Taste of the Wild Appalachian Valley Small Breed Grain-Free Dry Dog Food

Key Benefits:

  • Venison is the first ingredient
  • Added vitamins and powerful antioxidants
  • Omega fatty acids support skin and coat health
  • Made in the USA by a family owned and operated company

Most Popular Food for Chihuahuas – Taste of the Wild dog food offers all of the essential nutrients your Chihuahua companion needs to live a healthy, active lifestyle. This balanced diet contains pro and pre-biotics to support digestion, while providing a rich blend of fats and proteins to promote energy and overall wellbeing. The small size kibble are appropriate for your Chihuahua’s tiny teeth and tummy, so it’ll be easy to eat and digest.

Taste of the Wild is nutrient-rich and made with a proprietary probiotic blend. The dog food doesn’t contain any sort of grain, corn, wheat or fillers, making it a terrific choice for pups with sensitive stomachs. This natural recipe is formulated with lamb, egg, duck and ocean fish, with venison as the first ingredient. It also contains real fruits and vegetables, which are an excellent source of omega-3 and 6 fatty acids. Taste of the Wild is quality food that is made in the USA using the most scientifically advanced food safety protocols, so you can rest easy knowing that you’re feeding your Chi a premium food.

Pros:

  • Made with premium, highly-digestible meats
  • Contains pre and probiotics to support digestion
  • Small kibble pieces are easy for your Chihuahua to chew and digest
  • Appropriate amount of omega fatty acids to promote overall wellness

Cons:

  • Taste of the Wild is a premium dog food, but it comes at a higher cost.

American Journey Salmon & Sweet Potato Recipe

Key Benefits:

  • Doesn’t contain any grain, corn, wheat or soy
  • DHA supports brain and eye health
  • Fiber-rich ingredients supply your dog with energy
  • Fruits and veggies work as natural antioxidants

Most Inexpensive Food for Chihuahuas – American Journey is an exceptional dog food that combines delicious flavor with nutritious qualities. Your Chihuahua is sure to crave this recipe, as it contains wholesome fruits and vegetables as well as lean meats. This grain-free food is made with real, deboned salmon as the first ingredient. Salmon is packed with amino acids that will help your Chihuahua maintain a healthy figure.

American Journey dog food has everything you could want in a nutritious meal option for your precious Chihuahua. Fruits and veggies offer immune support, salmon promotes lean muscle mass and fiber-rich ingredients provide your Chi with boundless energy for your exciting adventures.

Pros:

  • Affordable
  • Packed with natural antioxidants and fiber-rich ingredients
  • Lean protein for healthy muscle mass
  • Good for Chihuahuas with sensitive stomachs

Cons:

  • The kibble pieces may be too large for super tiny Chihuahuas

Merrick Lil’ Plates Grain-Free Real Chicken & Sweet Potato Puppy Dry Dog Food

Key Benefits:

  • DHA supports healthy brain development
  • First ingredient is deboned chicken
  • Made with locally sourced ingredients
  • Digestible fibers are good for tiny tummies

Best Chihuahua Puppy Food  – For your growing Chihuahua puppy, Merrick Lil’ Plates food is a phenomenal option. Made with deboned chicken as the first ingredient, this food is catered toward the big appetite of your small pup. It’s full of hearty flavor, as real fruits and veggies add a delicious taste that your Chihuahua will absolutely love.

Chihuahua puppies have very tiny bellies, but Merrick Lil’ Plates food is formulated with pre and probiotic fiber so it’s easy to digest. Omega-3 and 6 fatty acids will help your Chihuahua maintain a healthy, lustrous coat, and DHA will help support brain development. For your precious pint-sized pup, Merrick Lil’ Plates is free of gluten and all artificial flavors and preservatives. It’s also made in Texas using ingredients from trusted farmers, so you can be confident in your Chihuahua’s meals.

Pros:

  • Made with deboned chicken plus real fruits and veggies
  • Tested for quality and safety
  • Small bites are appropriate for your tiny Chi’s mouth
  • DHA support your puppy’s brain development

Cons:

  • This is the only flavor small breed puppy food that Merrick offers

Natural Balance L.I.D. Chicken & Sweet Potato Formula Small Breed Bites

Key Benefits:

  • Limited number of protein and carbohydrate sources
  • Made with wholesome, high-quality ingredients
  • Small size kibble accommodates the needs of Chihuahuas
  • Kibble is shaped and textured to clean teeth and gums

Best Sensitive Stomach Food for Chihuahuas  – This Natural Balance limited ingredient formula is exceptional for Chihuahuas with allergies and sensitive stomachs. The limited number of protein and carbohydrate sources will provide all of the nutritional value that your pup needs without putting stress on their tummy. The diet is complete and balanced to promote your Chi’s overall wellness.

Natural Balance L.I.D. small breed bites are made with wholesome ingredients to provide your tiny pooch with all of the nutrients they need to live a fulfilling life. The formula will optimize your Chihuahua’s skin and coat while offering quality nutrition. Furthermore, the small kibble pieces are designed to effectively clean teeth and gums to keep your pup’s pearly whites in tip-top shape!

Pros:

  • Limited ingredient diet for Chihuahuas with allergies and sensitive digestion
  • Small bites are designed to clean teeth and gums
  • Flaxseed and salmon oil promote healthy skin and coat
  • No artificial colors or flavors
  • Available in other protein flavors such as fish, lamb, duck and beef

Cons:

  • Some ingredients may be sourced outside of the USA

5 More Top Rated Chihuahua Foods

Instinct by Nature’s Variety Raw Boost Small Breed Grain-Free Recipe

Make your Chihuahua’s meal time exciting with this Raw Boost dog food from Instinct. The small kibble bits are mixed with delicious freeze-dried raw meat. This Chihuahua food is chock full of antioxidants and natural omegas to support digestive health, the immune system, and healthy skin and coat. It even offers joint support for your aging pup. Unlock your Chihuahua’s active potential with Instinct by Nature’s Variety Raw Boost dog food, which is proudly made in the USA. And here’s a helpful tip from other dog parents – gently shake the bag of dog food before distributing it, as the raw pieces become easily bunched up.

Wellness CORE Grain-Free Small Breed Dry Dog Food

This dog food from Wellness is a complete and balanced diet that offers many benefits for your beloved Chihuahua. Formulated with glucosamine and chondroitin, each bite of kibble will help your pup maintain optimal bone and joint health. Salmon oil provides omega fatty acids, which aid in keeping your Chihuahua’s coat shiny and healthy. If you have an active Chihuahua, this Wellness CORE option is a great choice because it contains high-quality protein to support high energy needs. This diet delivers an appropriate blend of botanicals and nutritional supplements with quality animal protein to bring your Chihuahua a delightful everyday meal.

Diamond Naturals Small Breed Adult Chicken & Rice Formula Dry Dog Food

Your Chihuahua deserves superior nutrition, and they will get it with this recipe from Diamond Naturals. Made with the highest-quality ingredients, this dog food contains carefully determined levels of protein, as well as fat and other vital nutrients. Superfoods such as blueberries, kale and pumpkin work together as natural antioxidants, while coconut and flaxseed promote healthy skin and coat. A K9 strain probiotic will benefit your Chihuahua’s digestive health, and dried kelp and dried chicory root fiber assist in regulation. Diamond Naturals dog food is manufactured safely in the USA.

CANIDAE Grain-Free Pure Petite Salmon Formula Small Breed Dry Dog Food

This small breed dog food is unique because each bit of kibble is coated with a delectable freeze-dried salmon. It’s made with 8 key ingredients to provide a nutritional meal for even the most sensitive Chihuahuas. This CANIDAE formula is packed with real ingredients that you will recognize and trust. A trio of probiotics, antioxidants and omega fatty acids work together to provide your pooch with a tasty meal they can’t resist. The grain-free recipe is lovingly crafted by a family-owned company with uncompromised quality.

Solid Gold Wee Bit Bison & Brown Rice Recipe Small Breed Dried Dog Food

Give your tiny pup the taste of powerful nutrition and flavor they deserve with this small breed food from Solid Gold. Created with the perfect balance of bison, healthy fats and whole grains, this Chihuahua food blends together 20 nutritious superfoods into bite-sized pieces. Some of the ingredients include pumpkin, cranberries, blueberries, carrots and broccoli. And don’t worry about allergens – this kibble doesn’t contain any corn, wheat or soy. Solid Gold is a holistic, whole grain dog food that is ideal for Chihuahuas at any life stage.

 

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Should a Chihuahuas eat dry or canned food? If your Chihuahua is just weaning off their mother’s milk, it’s best to start them on a canned food diet with just a small amount of dry food. By the time your Chi is an adult, they should be fully transitioned to a 100% dry meal. Semi-moist or freshly made delivery dog food can also be fed as a main diet. However, Chihuahuas should eat some sort of kibble if possible, since the texture and shape will naturally help with oral health. Keep in mind that it’s absolutely okay to supplement your Chihuahua’s diet with some wet or semi-moist food every once in a while to switch it up and add excitement to meal time.
  • Should my Chihuahua eat a grain-free diet? Grain-free diets have become increasingly popular over the years, but now some studies have linked grain-free foods with potential heart conditions. Ultimately a quality dog food that contains grain will not negatively affect your Chihuahua. But if your pup has a sensitive stomach, battles chronic ear infections or has allergies, a grain-free food may be best. We suggest consulting your veterinarian if you think there may be a more serious health concern at hand.
  • How much food should I feed my Chihuahua? You should feed your Chihuahua based on their age and weight. Chihuahua puppies can generally be free fed, while adults typically don’t need any more than 1/3 cup of food per day. Remember to always reference the feeding guidelines on your dog food’s packaging, or consult your veterinarian.
  • How often should I feed my Chihuahua puppy? Your Chihuahua puppy can be free fed everyday up until they are about 12 weeks old. This process ensures your Chihuahua is eating enough to promote growth of their bones, joints and vital organs. Of course you’ll want to keep an eye on how much your Chihuahua is eating to prevent obesity at a young age.
  • Do Chihuahuas need special food? Chihuahuas should be fed a small breed food. Small breed dog foods are created to supply optimal nutrition for small dogs in tiny bite-sized pieces. Your Chi may need a more specialized food if they have health conditions that you need to take into consideration.

Conclusion

Chihuahuas pack a ton of personality into a tiny package, so it’s vital you support their health with densely nutritious foods. Your Chihuahua may live 15 years or more so building a system of health and wellbeing from day one is critical to all those years being quality ones. Look for foods with proper protein and carbohydrate balance because you don’t have a lot of room to get those amounts in. Empty calories only waste the little food you can feed your tiny breed dog.

Chihuahuas can be sensitive, both in taste and digestion, so whole ingredients with no fillers get top billing with all our foods. Corn and soy are red flags, as are artificial flavors which can encourage your Chihuahua to overeat. They can be picky little dogs, and one good thing about tiny breeds is that you can switch to more expensive cooked food diets without feeling the effects in your wallet the way you would with a large breed.

 

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