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8 Best Low Carb Dog Food Brands: Our 2024 Buyer’s Guide

Written by

Ma. Leonor Dollisen

Reviewed by

Updated on:

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Best Low Carb Dog Food

Is low-carb dog food necessary? I’ve seen an uptick in consumers who are choosing that option for their pets. And many dog sites are also pushing it for pups. So why are more and more people choosing this diet for their pets?

Dogs are omnivores by nature, but they are primarily meat-eaters. They can subsist on plant foods when meat is not available, but meat is still the best option for their bodies and what they prefer.

So what role do carbohydrates play in a dog’s diet? It is important to note that dogs don’t have any specific biological need for carbohydrates—protein and fat are the most important macronutrients in a balanced diet for dogs.

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Carbohydrates can, however, provide your dog with usable energy as well as dietary fiber and key nutrients. The thing to remember with carbohydrates, however, is that there are two different kinds—simple and complex. 

Simple carbohydrates require little digestive breakdown. Complex carbohydrates, on the other hand, take longer to break down, which means that they provide a steady stream of slow-burning energy. It also means that they have a lesser effect on your dog’s blood sugar levels. This is important because high blood sugar can contribute to weight gain in dogs and may also lead to diabetes.

Still interested in the diet? Let us help you choose the best low carb dog food in the market today! We’ve personally tested some of these dog foods and had different batches of testers do the others. Everything was researched thoroughly and with the average consumer in mind. 

OUR TOP 3 PICKS FOR LOW CARB DOG FOODS

8 Best Low Carb Dog Food Brands: Our [year] Buyer's Guide 2
  • High content of L-carnitine
  • With natural fiber sources
  • Made from real bison
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8 Best Low Carb Dog Food Brands: Our [year] Buyer's Guide 4
  • Limited ingredient recipes
  • Every recipe is handmade
  • 60% off first order
VIEW LATEST PRICE →See Customer Reviews →
8 Best Low Carb Dog Food Brands: Our [year] Buyer's Guide 4
  • Made without extra calories
  • Precise balance of carbs and calories
  • Exclusive LifeSource Bits
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Our Top Picks for Low Carb Dog Foods

If you were to peruse the selection of recipes offered by most of the top pet food manufacturers, you would probably come across at least one low-carb recipe.

Not all pet food companies are dedicated to upholding a low-carb nutritional philosophy, however. If you want to find a low carb dog food that adheres to your dog’s natural evolutionary diet, we recommend the following:

IMAGE PRODUCT  
8 Best Low Carb Dog Food Brands: Our [year] Buyer's Guide 7
Ollie Pet Food Flavorful Chicken
  • Limited ingredient recipes
  • Great source of antioxidants
  • Every recipe is handmade
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8 Best Low Carb Dog Food Brands: Our [year] Buyer's Guide 8
Blue Buffalo Wilderness Healthy Weight Chicken Recipe
  • Made without extra calories
  • Precise balance of carbs and calories
  • Exclusive LifeSource Bits
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8 Best Low Carb Dog Food Brands: Our [year] Buyer's Guide 9
Earthborn Holistic Great Plains Feast Formula
  • With lean, red meat bison meal
  • Proper ratio of omega 3 and 6
  • Guaranteed levels of antioxidants
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8 Best Low Carb Dog Food Brands: Our [year] Buyer's Guide 10
Nulo Freestyle Turkey & Sweet Potato Recipe
  • Fresh, protein-rich, low carb
  • With 80% protein from real meats
  • AAFCO approved dog food
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8 Best Low Carb Dog Food Brands: Our [year] Buyer's Guide 11
VICTOR Select Nutra Pro Active Dog & Puppy Formula
  • High protein, low carbohydrates
  • Nutrient-dense recipe
  • Ideal for growing puppies
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8 Best Low Carb Dog Food Brands: Our [year] Buyer's Guide 12
ACANA Regionals Appalachian Ranch
  • Inclusion of whole, fresh meats
  • Made with finest ingredients
  • A great choice for low carb diet
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8 Best Low Carb Dog Food Brands: Our [year] Buyer's Guide 13
Wysong Epigen 90 Starch-Free Formula
  • Designed for state-of-the-art nutrition
  • Starch-free diet
  • Mimics archetypal canine diet
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8 Best Low Carb Dog Food Brands: Our [year] Buyer's Guide 14
Nature’s Logic Canine Duck & Salmon Feast
  • 100% natural formula
  • MSG-free formula
  • With probiotics and digestive enzymes
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What is the Best Low Carb Dog Food in 2024?

  1. Ollie Fresh Pet Food
  2. Blue Buffalo Wilderness Healthy Weight Chicken Recipe
  3. Earthborn Great Plains Feast Formula
  4. Nulo Freestyle Turkey & Sweet Potato Recipe
  5. Victor Select Nutra Pro Active Dog & Puppy Formula
  6. Acana Appalachian Ranch Regional Formula
  7. Wysong Epigen 90 Starch-Free Formula
  8. Nature's Logic Canine Duck & Salmon Feast
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1. Ollie Chicken Dish with Carrots

First 5 Ingredients: Chicken, Carrots, Peas, Rice, Chicken liver

Rating: 5/5

8 Best Low Carb Dog Food Brands: Our [year] Buyer's Guide 15

Ollie is a brand of fresh dog food that is quickly gaining popularity among pet owners. Yes, that’s right. Fresh and not frozen dog food that’s cooked only when you order. 

If you’ve read any of my previous article, chances are that you’ll have also read how much I love Ollie. It’s one of my go-tos for my pups because 1) it’s good quality dog food — one of the best among many dog foods I’ve tried actually! — 2) the brand’s recipes are seriously good high-protein diets, and 3) the recipes are customized to each of my individual pups.

This particular recipe is a doggie favorite. It sticks to just one animal protein source, but there are three kinds: chicken meat, chicken liver, and eggs. Although the protein level is listed at 10%, do remember that this is not dry food. This is wet food where a 10% is actually a high amount. 

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By converting this 10% protein to dry matter basis, you will get 58%. That’s a whole lot for dog food and makes it one of the best high protein dog foods available. Even yor high-performing dog will be satisfied with his meal. 

In addition to the nutritional benefits, it is also convenient for pet owners. The meals are cooked in small batches and delivered straight at your door, making it easy to feed your dog a fresh, healthy diet without the hassle of preparing it yourself.

Key takeaways:

I like the use of chicken liver in this low carb food, not just to prop up the protein level but also to enhance the flavor profile. In my experience, pups just go wild over organ meat, and liver is always a favorite.

Not to mention, liver is also full of healthy fats and is nutrient-dense. And of course, with fat comes omega fatty acids. You know, those stuff responsible for healthy skin and coat. 

There’s absolutely nothing in this high protein dog food that I do not like. Everything has been well thought out and carefully selected. The only con I can think of is that you’d need to store the food in the fridge, which will take up a lot of space. But other than that, there’s nothing else.

Best for: All dogs on a low carb diet

Pros

  • Super low carb content
  • Human-grade and limited ingredients
  • Single animal protein source
  • Always freshly made
  • Customized for each individual pup
  • Provides better energy for pups and an overall healthier look

Cons

  • Takes up a bit of fridge storage space
  • A little more expensive than mass-produced commercial foods

2. Blue Buffalo Wilderness Healthy Weight Chicken Recipe

First 5 Ingredients: Deboned Chicken, Chicken Meal, Pea Protein, Peas, Tapioca Starch

Rating: 4.5/5

8 Best Low Carb Dog Food Brands: Our [year] Buyer's Guide 16

Inspired by the diet of wolves, true omnivores whose endurance is legendary, BLUE Wilderness is a grain-free, protein-rich food that contains more of the delicious chicken your dog loves.

It’s packed with meat and is formulated to meet the unique nutritional needs of large dogs while helping them achieve and maintain their ideal weight. It also features the brand’s exclusive LifeSource Bits, which are a precise blend of antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals selected by holistic veterinarians & animal nutritionists to support a dog’s overall health.

I was looking for a grain-free recipe to test that would also be light on the pockets. And since some of my testers were also looking for low-carb dog foods to keep down the weight of their chubby fur buddies (the recipe has approximately 35.93% carbohydrates on an as fed basis), this formula fit the bill. 

After feeding this to their dogs, several of the testers have reported that when combined with regular walks or other forms of exercise, this food has helped bring down the weight of their pups to a more manageable one. Two have said that it was the only dog food that managed to do so.

One thing, however, of note. Not all of our tester dogs were happy with the taste of the LifeSource bits. Some would pick these out from the rest of the kibble and leave them in the bowl. 

Key takeaways:

Aside from wet foods, some dry foods can also contain high levels of protein. In fact, this Blue Buffalo recipe is one of the best dry high protein dog foods out there. 

When I say best, I don’t just mean the protein level, although of course that’s a given. I also mean the overall formulation. There aren’t objectionable ingredients in here. I do wish for fewer pea products, but the makeup of the recipe is good enough for me. 

Best for: Dogs on a weight management and low-carb diet

Pros

  • Grain-free and free from meat by-products and artificial ingredients
  • Contains l-carnitine to help pups burn excess fat
  • Results in denser poops
  • Formulated with guaranteed levels of chondroitin and glucosamine for joints
  • Contains superfoods

Cons

  • Pups are not crazy about the LifeSource bits included in the kibble

3. Earthborn Holistic Great Plains Feast Formula

First 5 ingredients: Bison Meal, Peas, Pea Protein, Tapioca, Dried Egg

Rating: 4.75/5

8 Best Low Carb Dog Food Brands: Our [year] Buyer's Guide 17

According to the company website, Earthborn Holistic offers a wholesome approach to nutrition. This means that there are no artificial ingredients in any of its recipes, only high-quality products are used, and everything is made right here in the USA. 

This particular Earthborn high protein formula uses bison, which is a lean and red meat protein. It features egg protein, beef meal, Pacific Whiting meal, and Alaska Pollock meal as further animal protein support. 

Peas drive up the protein content further up, while canola oil supplies most of the healthy fats. It’s low in saturated fat but high in omega fatty acids, specifically omega-3. 

There is not much carbohydrate content because the company states that it contains approximately 28% of carbs on an as-fed basis.

Key takeaways:

I had a batch of testers try out this low-carb dog food. What we all found out is that many picky eaters love the stuff. It is probably down to the meaty formulation, because normally finicky dogs did not turn up their nose at this dog food. 

And although it is not billed as a weight management food, one tester has observed that her pooch has been acting more playful, which has led to a bit of weight loss.

Two testers did comment that while the dog food is billed as suitable for all life stages and breed sizes (except for large dogs), the kibble are a little too big for small pooches. 

A word of warning, though. While the dog food formulation is designed to be gentle on sensitive stomachs, it’s not really intended for those with animal protein allergies. There’s a whole bunch of proteins here, including poultry, that might not be suitable for those with food sensitivities. 

Also, this high-protein dog food has canola oil. I’m not going to argue with this oil’s nutritional benefits, but I am going to point out that the oil’s extraction process uses chemicals. This is why I rated this dog food lower than I would have had it not contained this oil.

Best for: Adult dogs who have sensitive stomachs

Pros

  • Mostly a win for picky eaters
  • High protein formula
  • Uses a unique novel animal protein as the main source of protein
  • Contains l-carnitine, which converts fat into energy
  • Has a proper ratio of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids for healthy skin and coat

Cons

  • Kibble size is a little too big for small pups
  • Contains canola oil

4. Nulo Freestyle Turkey & Sweet Potato Recipe

First 5 Ingredients: Deboned Turkey, Turkey Meal, Salmon Meal, Chickpeas, Chicken Fat

Rating: 4.5/5

8 Best Low Carb Dog Food Brands: Our [year] Buyer's Guide 18

Though not one of the largest brands on the market, Nulo is unique from most other pet food manufacturers in its commitment to craft recipes that contain at least 80% protein from real meats like chicken, turkey, salmon, and lamb. 

It’s a quality dog food brand that I’ve tried time and again. For my fosters that have special conditions, Nulo has become one of my go-tos because it specializes in low-carb dog foods that contain only low-glycemic ingredients, like lentils, chickpeas, and sweet potatoes. 

This particular dog food recipe has a carbohydrate content of only 31%. The sweet potatoes provide most of the carbs, with a little more coming from the peas and chickpeas. 

Deboned turkey and turkey meal supply much of the animal protein content, but this dog food also contains salmon meal and deboned trout which boost the level of protein up. 33% is considered high protein for dry dog food, and it’s at a level that would be suitable for highly active doggos.

As for the fat, which is also great for fueling active pups, it is supplied by chicken fat. Chicken fat is one of the best healthy fats there is, which is why it’s a fairly common ingredient in dog foods. Why, you ask? It has omega-9 and omega-9 and is mostly unsaturated fat. And one more thing, chicken fat is also great for enhancing the flavor profile of any dog food!

Key Takeaways:

I tried this grain-free, high-protein formulation on my foster pup who had a mild chicken allergy. I also asked a few testers to feed this to their dogs who prefer turkey/had chicken or grain sensitivities/required a low glycemic diet.

Well, on the plus side, my sensitive pup highly enjoyed the taste. Since it’s free from chicken proteins, it did not trigger any of her allergies. It does contain chicken fat, which does not contain any protein, so I deemed it quite safe for my buddy. 

While I didn’t observe any itching in our pet nor did many of my testers, it’s best to consult with your vet first if your pup has a severe chicken allergy, just to be on the safe side.

As for the other positive, I was pleasantly surprised to feel my pup’s fur becoming softer. It wasn’t coarse to begin with, but it definitely felt smoother to the touch. After comparing notes with my testers, a few of them agreed with this observation. 

Best for: Adult dogs of all breed sizes

Pros

  • Helps makes coats softer
  • Free from chicken and egg proteins
  • Low glycemic ingredients
  • Made of 85% animal-based proteins

Cons

  • Contains chicken fat, which some chicken-sensitive pups might not tolerate

5. VICTOR Select Nutra Pro Active Dog & Puppy Formula

First 5 Ingredients: Chicken Meal, Blood Meal, Whole Grain Millet, Chicken Fat, Yeast Culture

Rating: 4.5/5

8 Best Low Carb Dog Food Brands: Our [year] Buyer's Guide 19

Victor Nutra Pro is made by the Victor Pet Food company that believes in maximizing the genetic potential of every pup. Every recipe it formulates contains the VPro Blend, which consists of selenium yeast (for metabolic function and immune response), prebiotics, mineral complexes, and probiotics.

The brand offers very low carb dog foods despite the use of a grain product as the source of fiber and carbs. As per the company, this formula contains approximately 27.6% carbohydrate content on an as fed basis and 29.79% on a dry matter basis.

There are no legumes, peas, or potatoes in this food, which makes it ultra safe for pups as there is no risk of DCM (which is more probable in dog foods that rely heavily on those three ingredients).

This high protein dog food takes most of its animal protein from chicken meal. If you’ve never head of chicken meal — or any type of meat meal, for that matter — don’t worry. It’s an excellent type of meat ingredient. Meal only means that most of the moisture has been removed from the dog food so it’s denser in protein and nutrients. 

As for the blood meal ingredient, it can be surprising if this is the first time you’ve come across it. But it’s really a nice source of animal protein and calcium, depending on the source. Since it’s Victor Pet Foods, which is known for quality dog foods, I know that the blood meal comes from healthy livestock.

Key Takeaways: 

I asked a batch of testers to feed this to their pups for a few weeks for a more personal and accurate feedback. Since the formulation is designed for all life stages, I made sure that this batch of testers had pets ranging from pups to seniors.

After the tests we’ve done, the feedback came back. More stamina was the unanimous characteristic that all pups on this high protein and low carb diet had in common (across all age groups), as well as firmer/denser stools. This is ideal if your pup usually suffers from soft or loose bowel movements. 

Some concerns were raised about some pups’ stools turning dark, but for most, the dog food is a win.

What I find nice here is that 92% of the dog food is composed of animal protein. That’s quality right there. Simply put, this dog food does not rely on fillers at all. The ingredients are made up of only the essentials.

Best for: Sporting dogs with high protein and energy demands

Pros

  • 92% of the protein is derived from animal sources
  • Provides lots of energy for pups
  • Suitable for all life stages and breed size
  • Has l-carnitine to help burn off excess fats
  • Features DHA for brain and eye development in puppies

Cons

  • Can make dogs’ poops look black

6. ACANA Appalachian Ranch Regional Formula

First 5 Ingredients: Deboned Beef, Deboned Pork, Deboned Lamb, Lamb Meal, Beef Meal

Rating: 5/5

8 Best Low Carb Dog Food Brands: Our [year] Buyer's Guide 20

Known for its biologically appropriate pet foods, the Acana brand offers what it calls “a new class of meat-based foods to mirror your dog’s evolutionary diet.”

The first five ingredients in this dog food are all animal proteins, which I absolutely approve of, and there are more further down the list. It’s an extremely meat-packed dish that I feel is worth trying out for any pet owner, especially since owners from across different platforms have given this dog food a glowing report. 

Remember what I said about fat enhancing a meal’s flavor profile? Well, this dog food formulation contains many sources of healthy fats, such as  pork liver, beef fat, fish oil, beef liver, and lamb liver. Some of these are even freeze-dried to make it even more attractive to picky eaters. 

How can any dog simply say no to such a meaty dish? I don’t know any. And this seems to be the idea behind the formulation. Not only is it a high protein dog food, which is always appreciated, but it is also quite tempting even for finicky pups.

But if you’re concerned about it being a more rounded meal, don’t fret. The high-protein dog food also contains several fruits and veggies for a more balanced diet.

Key Takeaways:

Since the dog food is labeled as suitable for all life stages and most breed sizes (it is not recommended for large-sized pups), I decided to spread the test across pet parents who had pups in different age groups and breeds. I also have notes to refer to as I’ve fed this to my pups (both my own and fosters) previously.

What I  found out is most dogs can’t resist it. My testers say that their dogs cannot have enough of the kibble. And because it is so very tasty and meaty, two of them have used the kibble as training treats with good results. Another tester said that he is happy he’s found a poultry-free food that his sensitive pooch loves.

I did not get any negative feedback from our testers, which is a first. I also have to say that when I fed this to my fosters, I have observed nothing but excellent results. My pups were more active and keen to play, their furs were so much better to look at, and they just had a more robust look to them. 

Best for: Dogs of all breeds and lifestages

Pros

  • Freeze-dried raw formulation attracts finicky pups
  • Crafted with 70% animal protein
  • Features guaranteed levels of EPA, DHA, glucosamine, and omega fatty acids
  • High-protein recipe
  • Poultry-free

Cons

  • May be too rich for inactive dogs
  • Not made for the development of large-sized puppers

7. Wysong Epigen 90 Starch-Free Formula

First 5 Ingredients: Chicken Meal, Organic Chicken, Meat Protein Isolate, Chicken Fat, Gelatin

Rating: 4.75/5

8 Best Low Carb Dog Food Brands: Our [year] Buyer's Guide 21

Established all the way back in 1979, the Wysong pet food company was one of the first pioneers in the natural and holistic pet food industry. It’s not as commercialized as other pet food brands, but it is consistent in producing many quality pet food products, including low carb dog foods.

It’s also currently patenting an extrusion process for its kibbles that makes the food starch-free to help dogs eat foods that they are biologically designed to eat.

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This is one interesting dog food recipe because it is labeled as entirely starch-free by the brand. It means that there are zero carbohydrates included. Combine that with an ultra high protein content, and you’ve got a dog food that will keep performance pups in perfect condition even after strenuous activities. 

Looking at the nutritional information label doesn’t really show anything surprising, but it’s a different story when you check the guaranteed analysis. This low-carb dog food contains a whopping 63% crude protein, courtesy of the chicken meal and organic chicken. 

Fish oil and coconut oil provide the fat. Fish oil supports heart health while coconut oil makes the skin glossy.

Key Takeaways:

I divided my testers into two groups. One group was filled with dog owners who had highly active doggos. The other group was composed of testers with dogs that simply needed more energy to move around and lose excess weight.

After several weeks on this diet, I found that this dog food has been able to sustain the energy needs and more of working dogs. They don’t tire out easily and are still quite playful and energetic at the end of a long day. For pups who are on the chunky side, this dog food has managed to help them trim down and maintain their reduced weight. 

Some did complain about the size of the kibble, which run to the small size and would not be ideal for larger dogs. 

Best for: All dogs (and even cats too) who need high protein dog foods

Pros

  • Provides high levels of energy
  • Unprecedented levels of meat protein
  • Single animal protein source
  • Safe for multi-pet households because it is good for cats too

Cons

  • Pricey
  • The pieces are too tiny for big dogs

8. Nature’s Logic Canine Duck & Salmon Feast

First 5 Ingredients: Duck, Duck Broth, Poultry Liver, Salmon, Poultry Heart

Rating: 4.75/5

8 Best Low Carb Dog Food Brands: Our [year] Buyer's Guide 22

Nature’s Logic is a pet food company that proudly boasts of all-natural dog food products that are clean, sustainable, and protein-packed.

The dog food recipes are claimed to be free of common allergens, do not contain synthetic vitamins or minerals, and packed with probiotics for digestion. 

This Duck & Salmon dog food contains grains in the form of millet, but it is low carb and low glycemic. In fact, it only has 23.20% carbohydrates on a dry matter basis.

There are several animal sources of protein, which explains why the protein content is quite high. Although the front label only mentions duck and salmon, the recipe also makes use of turkey meal, dried pork liver, and menhaden fish meal to boost its protein profile.

There’s a not-so-common ingredient in this recipe that might raise your eyebrows: spray-dried porcine blood or pig’s blood. While that doesn’t sound so good, it’s actually an excellent source of amino acids. And based on scientific evidence, these products are very safe for your dogs to eat.

Pumpkin, along with millet, provide the fiber your pup needs for a healthy tummy and regular waste movement. 

Key Takeaways:

Because it sounded good (the food label is a dream) and there are little reviews for this product, I decided to check this wet dog food out and also have my team of volunteers try it on their doggos.

Canned food is normally more palatable to dogs than dry so I wasn’t at all surprised by this recipe’s reception from our canine testers. This is even more so because of its dense muscle meat and organ meat formulation. Only one pup out of several was not amused and quite ignored the food, but his owner feels that this is due to the flavor which his pup is not really fond of.

My human testers not only liked the quality ingredients, but they were also happy about the smell. ( I was, too). Unlike other dog foods, this doesn’t smell that bad at all, especially for something with fish in it. 

What I am most happy about this dog food is that it is a completely balanced diet made up of few ingredients and most of them are meat. There isn’t any questionable ingredient and it’s full of probiotics to keep a dog’s digestive system working properly.

It does have to be fed with caution as the calorie content here is quite high. This is fine for active dogs but not so much for inactive canines.

Best for: Pups on a low-carb, high protein diet who love wet food

Pros

  • A hit with most pups
  • Made with 90% animal ingredients
  • Gluten-free
  • Naturally-sourced nutrients

Cons

  • More expensive than other canned dog food
  • High in calories

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What Should You Look For In A Low-Carb Dog Food?

When shopping for a low-carb dog food, you want to use the same degree of caution you would use when shopping for any other type of pet food.

1. Check the label for an AAFCO statement of nutritional adequacy. This confirms the product is complete and balanced for your dog’s life stage (or for all life stages).

2. Take a look at the guaranteed analysis. Make sure the product exceeds your dog’s minimum requirements for protein and fat.

Adult dogs need a minimum of 18% protein and 5% fat, while puppies need at least 22% protein and 8% fat. Remember, protein is the most important nutrient for your dog so you want that number to be as high as possible.

Fat is a concentrated form of energy for your dog so it should be higher than 5% but not so high that it leads to an excess in calories that could cause your dog to gain an unhealthy amount of weight.

3. Check the list of ingredients. No matter what type of dog food you are shopping for, you want to see a high-quality source of animal protein (poultry, meat, or fish) as the first ingredient.

Most commercial dog foods list at least one carbohydrate within the first five ingredients and several within the first ten. This isn’t a problem for most dogs as long as those carbohydrates come from high-quality, digestible sources and they don’t outweigh the meat-based ingredients.

For dogs that don’t have food allergies or sensitivities, whole grains like brown rice, oatmeal, and barley offer decent digestibility. For other dogs, however, gluten- and grain-free options like sweet potatoes, tapioca, peas, and lentils are more digestible.

You’ll also want to make sure that the recipe includes high-quality, animal-based fats as well as fresh fruits and veggies plus beneficial additives.

Calculating the carbohydrate content

In addition to evaluating a low carb pet food by the quality of the ingredients, you should also get a feel for the amount and type of carbohydrates used in the product.

Unfortunately, pinpointing the exact carbohydrate content of a dog food is difficult because pet food manufacturers are not legally required to disclose this information.

You can, however, use the information provided in the Guaranteed Analysis to make an estimate. To do so, you’ll need to remember that the crude protein and fat content plus the ash, moisture, and carbohydrate content will all add up to 100%.

To calculate the estimated carb content of the product, then, you simply subtract the values you are given from 100% and whatever is left over will be the estimated carb content.

Once you have that value, you can make a direct comparison of different products until you find the one that is right for your dog.

8 Best Low Carb Dog Food Brands: Our [year] Buyer's Guide 23

What Are the Benefits of a Low Carb Diet for Dogs?

Switching your dog to a low carb food isn’t just a means of making your dog’s diet more natural – it can also provide significant health benefits in certain cases.

Reduced risk of allergies and digestive problems. Low carb diets are particularly beneficial for dogs that have digestive issues like inflammatory bowel disease or food allergies and sensitivities. These conditions can lead to chronic inflammation in the digestive tract which can not only cause symptoms like diarrhea and vomiting but can actually interfere with the absorption of essential nutrients.

Helps dogs in losing weight. Just like in humans, excess carbohydrates can lead to weight gain in dogs. A low-carb diet can help regulate your dog's weight by reducing the overall caloric intake and preventing spikes in blood sugar levels. This is especially beneficial for dogs who are overweight or have a tendency to gain weight easily, helping them maintain a healthy body weight.

Lowers the risk of diseases.  This goes especially for dogs with diabetes or certain types of cancer. Based on a few studies, a body in ketosis (a process that happens when your body does not have enough carbohydrates to use for energy) can starve tumors from growing.  Less carbs can also mean that your dog’s blood sugar remains regulated (if he has diabetes).

Better Blood Sugar Regulation. Dogs, especially certain breeds, can be prone to blood sugar imbalances, such as diabetes. Feeding them a low-carb diet can help regulate their blood sugar levels, reducing the risk of developing diabetes or managing existing diabetes more effectively. This can also be beneficial for senior dogs or dogs with other health conditions that require careful blood sugar management.

Increased Energy and Stamina. Carbohydrates are a quick source of energy, but they can also cause fluctuations in blood sugar levels, leading to energy crashes in dogs. On the other hand, a low-carb diet can provide a sustained source of energy for dogs, helping them maintain higher energy levels throughout the day. This is especially beneficial for active dogs, such as working dogs or dogs who participate in agility or other high-energy activities.

Better Digestion. Dogs are primarily carnivores, and their digestive systems are designed to process animal-based proteins and fats. High-carb diets can be hard on a dog's digestive system, leading to issues such as gas, bloating, and diarrhea. A low-carb diet that is rich in high-quality animal proteins and healthy fats can promote better digestion and gut health in dogs.

Improved Dental Health. High-carb diets can contribute to the buildup of plaque and tartar on a dog's teeth, leading to dental issues such as gum disease and tooth decay. A low-carb diet that is low in sugars and starches can help promote better dental health in dogs by reducing the risk of plaque and tartar buildup, which can ultimately lead to better oral hygiene and fresher breath.

Healthier Skin and Coat. A low-carb diet that is rich in animal-based proteins and healthy fats can promote healthier skin and coat in dogs. Proteins and fats are essential for maintaining healthy skin cells and promoting a lustrous coat. By reducing the intake of carbohydrates, which can sometimes trigger skin inflammation or allergies in dogs, a low-carb diet can help improve the overall condition of your dog's skin and coat.

Switching your dog to a low carb food isn’t just a means of making your dog’s diet more natural – it can also provide significant health benefits in certain cases.

Low carb diets are particularly beneficial for dogs that have digestive issues like inflammatory bowel disease or food allergies and sensitivities. These conditions can lead to chronic inflammation in the digestive tract which can not only cause symptoms like diarrhea and vomiting but can actually interfere with the absorption of essential nutrients.

Conclusion

It's important to note that every dog is unique, and dietary needs may vary based on factors such as age, breed, size, activity level, and overall health. Before making any significant changes to your dog's diet, it's always best to consult with your veterinarian to ensure that a low-carb diet is suitable for your individual dog and to get recommendations on the best approach to meet your dog's specific nutritional needs.

Though carbohydrates do serve a few important purposes in your dog’s diet, that doesn’t mean he can’t do without them. Going back to the example of wild wolves, it is possible for your dog to get all of the nutrients he needs from a balanced meat-based diet.

Unfortunately, raw food diets for dogs are pretty expensive and making your own meat-based diet at home requires a good bit of research and planning.

The easier and more affordable alternative is to feed your dog a commercial dog food which, in most cases, means feeding him some carbohydrates. Dog foods that are low in carbohydrates should be able to keep your pup in top shape while giving him extra energy for any and all activities.

If you really want to mimic your dog’s natural evolutionary diet, however, you should find a product that is low in carbohydrates. We’ve spent a lot of time researching and testing the products above, and we hope you find one of them suitable for your pup.

Good luck on your low-carb dog food diet journey!

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