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Low Residue Dog Foods: 7 Recipes We Highly Recommend

low residue

Aside from all of the different brands and manufacturers, there are many different types of dog food out there and there are probably some you’ve never heard of.

You’re probably familiar with Limited Ingredient Diets (LIDs), formulas made with a limited number of ingredients and designed for dogs with food allergies and sensitivities, but have you ever heard of low residue dog food?

This type of food is designed for dogs with certain digestive health issues. Keep reading to learn more about what low residue dog food is, what issues it can resolve, and how to choose one.

What is Low Residue Dog Food?

When you’re shopping around for a new food, there are a number of different things to look for. Most importantly, you want to choose a product that is properly balanced to meet your dog’s nutritional needs and made with high-quality ingredients.

None of this matters, however, unless the product is easily digestible for your dog. Certain ingredients are harder to digest than others – this primarily includes plant-based foods like grains, especially corn and wheat. These ingredients may not be completely broken down by your dog’s digestive system which means that all of that excess has to be excreted in the form of feces.

The more digestible your dog’s diet is, the smaller and more compact his stools will be because his body is able to digest and absorb most of what he eats. This is the idea behind a low residue diet for dogs.

A diet like this is beneficial for dogs with certain intestinal or digestive health problems such as inflammatory bowel disease (IBS) – it may also help with issues like diarrhea and vomiting. Some low residue recipes even contain medicinal ingredients for the treatment of specific digestive diseases.

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Low Residue Dog Foods: 7 Recipes We Highly Recommend 1
American Journey L.I.D. Salmon & Sweet PotatoLow Residue Dog Foods: 7 Recipes We Highly Recommend 2
  • Single-sourced protein
  • Complete and balanced nutrition
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Best Overall
Low Residue Dog Foods: 7 Recipes We Highly Recommend 3
Dr. Tim's Grain-Free Kinesis FormulaLow Residue Dog Foods: 7 Recipes We Highly Recommend 4
  • Metabolically balanced kibble
  • Features patented BC30 probiotic
  • Well-rounded meal is designed to suit all life stages
View Latest Price
Most Affordable
Low Residue Dog Foods: 7 Recipes We Highly Recommend 5
Castor & Pollux Pristine Lamb & Lentil RecipeLow Residue Dog Foods: 7 Recipes We Highly Recommend 2
  • First ingredient is grass-fed, free-range lamb
  • Real organic ingredients
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The Top 7 Brands of Low Residue Foods

If your dog suffers from frequent diarrhea or vomiting, you should check with your vet to see if he might have some kind of underlying digestive health problem. For dogs that have digestive issues, a low residue diet is an excellent option.

These diets are usually intended for short-term use until your dog’s symptoms are resolved, though dogs that suffer from frequent digestive health issues may benefit from a low residue product food as their staple diet. If you think that a low residue dog food might be right for your dog, try one of our top four recommended brands reviewed below:

IMAGE PRODUCT  
Low Residue Dog Foods: 7 Recipes We Highly Recommend 7
Dr. Tim's Grain-Free Kinesis Formula
  • Metabolically balanced kibble
  • Features patented BC30 probiotic
  • Well-rounded meal is designed to suit all life stages
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Low Residue Dog Foods: 7 Recipes We Highly Recommend 8
American Journey L.I.D. Salmon & Sweet Potato Recipe
  • Has a single animal protein source
  • Complete and balanced nutrition
  • Grain free, perfect for pets with sensitivities
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Low Residue Dog Foods: 7 Recipes We Highly Recommend 9
Castor & Pollux Pristine Lamb & Lentil Recipe
  • First ingredient is grass-fed, free-range lamb
  • Real organic lentils, chickpeas, peas, apples and blueberries
  • Grain-free, potato-free recipe contains no corn, soy, wheat or gluten
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Low Residue Dog Foods: 7 Recipes We Highly Recommend 10
Natural Balance Synergy Formula
  • Prebiotics for healthy digestion and a strong immune system
  • Complex fiber sources for lower stool volume
  • No added artificial flavors, colors or bleached ingredients
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Low Residue Dog Foods: 7 Recipes We Highly Recommend 11
Go! Sensitivities Limited Ingredient Duck
  • Features cage-free duck as a single source of poultry protein
  • With only 6 key ingredients
  • Very ideal for dogs with allergies/sensitivities
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Low Residue Dog Foods: 7 Recipes We Highly Recommend 12
Blue Buffalo Natural Veterinary Diet GI Support
  • With readily digestible proteins, carbohydrates and fats
  • Veterinary diet formula made with prebiotic fibers
  • Contains vitamins E, C, and antioxidant-rich ingredients
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Low Residue Dog Foods: 7 Recipes We Highly Recommend 13
Taste of the Wild Pine Forest
  • Grain-free recipe made with real venison as the first ingredient
  • Nutrient-rich and highly digestible recipe
  • Made with proprietary K9 strain probiotic blend
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1. Dr. Tim’s Kinesis Grain-Free Formula Dry

First 5 Ingredients: Chicken Meal, Dried White Potatoes, Dried Field Peas, Chicken Fat, Tapioca

WHY YOU SHOULD BUY
Low Residue Dog Foods: 7 Recipes We Highly Recommend 14
Known for producing specialized pet food formulas, especially for active and working breeds. With 87% protein from animal ingredients with grain-free carbohydrates, essential fatty acids, and probiotics for healthy digestion.

A brand of premium all-natural pet foods, Dr. Tim’s is known for producing specialized pet food formulas, especially for active and working breeds. In addition to these specialty formulas, Dr. Tim’s also offers a recipe that is designed for optimal digestibility – it is the Dr. Tim’s Kinesis Grain-Free Formula Dry Food recipe.

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This formula contains 87% protein from animal ingredients with grain-free carbohydrates, essential fatty acids, and probiotics for healthy digestion. Metabolically balanced for dogs that are sedentary up to moderately active, this recipe is free from corn, wheat, and soy as well as artificial additives.

It features chicken meal as the main ingredient with carbohydrate support from dried white potatoes and dried field peas. Chicken fat provides concentrated energy and essential fatty acids while vitamin supplements and chelated minerals help to ensure complete and balanced nutrition. Overall, this recipe contains 32% crude protein, 18% crude fat, and just 4.5% crude fiber.

2. American Journey L.I.D. Salmon & Sweet Potato Recipe

First 5 Ingredients: Deboned Salmon, Salmon Meal, Peas, Pea Starch, Sweet Potatoes

WHY YOU SHOULD BUY
Low Residue Dog Foods: 7 Recipes We Highly Recommend 15
With savory real deboned salmon that will greet your pup with every bite, giving them 22% of protein meal. This recipe is made to be as healthy as possible with no grain or by-product ingredients.

Dog parents who are grain-free enthusiasts will love the Salmon version of American Journey’s Limited Ingredient dog food. Savory real deboned salmon will greet your pup with every bite, giving your pet a protein-rich diet, with protein making up 22% of the meal.

Made with easily digestible carbohydrates like peas and sweet potatoes, this grain-free kibble is ideal for dogs with food sensitivities.

The brand didn’t just stop at protein. American Journey also added nourishing ingredients such as omega fatty acids for healthy coat and skin, calcium for strong bones, zinc for thyroid and immune function, Vitamin E for healthy muscles, and a whole lot more nutrients and minerals for a complete and balanced diet.

This recipe is made to be as healthy as possible with no grain or by-product ingredients. There are no artificial flavors, preservatives, or colors to cause food sensitivities, either.

3. Castor & Pollux Pristine Lamb & Lentil Recipe

First 5 Ingredients: Lamb, Lamb Meal, Organic Pea Protein, Organic Chickpeas, Organic Peas

WHY YOU SHOULD BUY
Low Residue Dog Foods: 7 Recipes We Highly Recommend 16
This recipe provides 100% complete and balanced nutrition for all life stages of dogs. Made with responsibly sourced ingredients that is wholesome and delicious.

It is rare to find dog food that is 100% USDA Organic, grain-free & incredibly well-received by customers and dogs alike.

PRISTINE Grain Free Grass-Fed Lamb & Lentil Recipe Dog Food provides 100% complete and balanced nutrition for all life stages of dogs.

The only complete line of pet food made with responsibly sourced ingredients, this wholesome and delicious recipe starts with grass-fed lamb that is responsibly raised with access to fresh air, natural light and space to roam.

Real organic produce is grown without synthetic fertilizers or chemical pesticides, on farms that care for the earth. All that healthy, whole food nutrition is prepared for your pooch right here in the USA because better ingredients make better food for your canine companion’s health.

4. Natural Balance Synergy Formula Dry

First 5 Ingredients: Chicken, Chicken Meal, Brown Rice, Chicken Fat, Beet Pulp

WHY YOU SHOULD BUY
Low Residue Dog Foods: 7 Recipes We Highly Recommend 17
Known for producing high-quality pet foods designed in keeping with sound scientific principles and nutritional truths. This recipe is designed to support your dog’s healthy digestion as well as his skin and coat.

The Natural Balance pet food company is known for producing high-quality pet foods designed in keeping with sound scientific principles and nutritional truths.

This brand offers a collection of original recipes but most of their products are limited ingredient diets or formulas designed for optimal digestibility. The Natural Balance Synergy Formula Dry Food in particular is designed to support your dog’s healthy digestion as well as his skin and coat.

It features fresh chicken and chicken meal as the top two ingredients, followed by digestible brown rice. Overall, this formula contains 28% crude protein, 16% crude fat, and just 5% crude fiber.

It contains plenty of healthy fats in the form of chicken fat and salmon oil as well as beneficial supplements like chelated minerals and dried fermentation products as probiotic support. This recipe is complete and balanced for dogs in all life stages.

5. Go! Sensitivity + Shine Limited Ingredient Duck Recipe

First 5 Ingredients: De-Boned Duck, Duck Meal, Peas, Tapioca, Lentils

WHY YOU SHOULD BUY
Low Residue Dog Foods: 7 Recipes We Highly Recommend 18
This formula is specifically for dogs with sensitive digestive systems and it provides the added benefit of supporting your dog’s healthy skin and coat. Contains chelated minerals as well as plenty of antioxidants.

The Sensitivity + Shine formula is one of three formulas that make up the Go! line of Petcurean pet foods. This formula is designed specifically for dogs with sensitive digestive systems and it provides the added benefit of supporting your dog’s healthy skin and coat.

The Petcurean Go! Sensitivity + Shine Limited Ingredient Duck Recipe in particular features premium-quality duck as the single source of animal protein with carbohydrate support from grain-free ingredients like peas, tapioca, and lentils.

You’ll also be glad to know that this recipe contains chelated minerals as well as plenty of antioxidants for healthy immunity. Overall, it contains 24% crude protein, 12% crude fat, and just 4.5% crude fiber. This recipe is complete and balanced for dogs in all life stages and it is free from artificial additives.

6. Blue Buffalo Natural Veterinary Diet GI Gastrointestinal Support

First 5 Ingredients: Deboned Chicken, Chicken Meal, Oatmeal, Brown Rice, Peas

WHY YOU SHOULD BUY
Low Residue Dog Foods: 7 Recipes We Highly Recommend 19
This formula is made with easily digestible ingredients and supplemented with prebiotic fibers to help keep your dog’s gastro intestinal tract healthy. With deboned chicken and chicken meal as the primary ingredients.

Blue Buffalo is one of the top brands in the natural pet food industry so you can count on all of their products to offer excellent quality and balanced nutrition. While many veterinary diets are made with low-quality ingredients, this Blue Buffalo Natural Veterinary Diet GI Gastrointestinal Support recipe is a great product for dogs with digestive issues.

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This formula is made with easily digestible ingredients and supplemented with prebiotic fibers to help keep your dog’s GI tract healthy. It contains 24% crude protein, 12% crude fat, and just 5% crude fiber.

This recipe features both deboned chicken and chicken meal as the primary ingredients with oatmeal, brown rice, peas, and potatoes for carbohydrate support. These are considered very digestible carbohydrates for dogs and they contribute some healthy nutrients as well.

Overall, this recipe is loaded with high-quality, easily digestible ingredients to meet your dog’s nutritional needs without upsetting his digestive system.

7. Taste of the Wild Pine Forest Formula

First 5 Ingredients: Venison, Lamb Meal, Garbanzo Beans, Peas, Lentils

WHY YOU SHOULD BUY
Low Residue Dog Foods: 7 Recipes We Highly Recommend 20
A tasty combination of venison, lamb meal, and garbanzo beans for a distinct meal that’s full of protein and highly-digestible energy.

Dogs with food sensitivities might find this red meat formulation more to their liking. It’s a tasty combination of venison, lamb meal, and garbanzo beans for a distinct meal that’s full of protein and highly-digestible energy.

The crude protein is helped along with the addition of ocean fish meal, bringing it to a minimum 28%.

The crude fiber content here is 5.5% — higher than most recipes in the Grain-Free range. The moisture content remains the same at 10% maximum, the crude fat is at 15% minimum, the

Omega-3 fatty acid is .3% minimum, and the Omega-6 fatty acid is at 2.8% minimum.

The caloric content is the lowest in the Grain-Free range with 337 kcal only per cup.

Low Residue Dog Foods: 7 Recipes We Highly Recommend 21

Tips for Choosing a Low Residue Recipe

Shopping for a low residue dog food is like shopping for any other kind of food – you need to take the time to read the information provided on the label in order to determine whether it is a good choice for your dog.

Start by checking for the AAFCO statement of nutritional adequacy to make sure that the product is complete and balanced for your dog’s life stage. This statement will also tell you whether the product is intended as a staple diet or for supplementary feeding.

Next, take a look at the guaranteed analysis to ensure that the food exceeds your dog’s minimum requirements for protein and fat. You’ll also want to take a look at the crude fiber content to make sure it is as low as possible.

The general recommendation for is no more than 5% crude fiber but a low residue recipe might be lower in crude fiber than a traditional dry food. You’ll want to make sure that the product includes some fiber, but not so much that it will interfere with your dog’s healthy digestion.

More importantly, however, is the type of fiber used in the product and the ingredients from which it comes.

This brings us to the next area of the pet food label you should be focusing on – the list of ingredients. On pet food packages, these lists are arranged in descending order by volume, so the ingredients at the top of the list are the ones used in the highest quantity.

low residue

This being the case, you want to see a high-quality source of animal protein at the very top of the list. If the product you’re looking at starts with a carbohydrate (especially a grain), it is likely that the fiber content of the product will be too high for your dog.

Low residue recipes tend to be higher in protein with moderate to high fat content when compared to other recipes. Aside from quality animal proteins like poultry, meat, fish and eggs, a low residue recipe should contain other easily digestible ingredients like cooked vegetables, healthy fats, and beneficial additives.

If your dog suffers from digestive health problems, your vet might recommend a low residue dog food. Before you shell out for a veterinary formula sold at your vet’s office, take the time to explore your options.

With a little research and some legwork on your part, you can find a high-quality recipe that will serve your dog’s needs for a low residue diet. If you need help getting started in your search, try one of the top four recommended brands reviewed above.

Low Residue Dog Foods: 7 Recipes We Highly Recommend 22

What Is a Low-Residue Dog Food?

Low-residue dog food is designed to give the bowel a break. Typically, it contains very little fiber with some other restrictions. It’s supposed to help to reduce the volume of your dog’s poop and make it smell a lot better.

Does My Dog Need Low-Residue Dog Food?

If your dog’s stools are becoming too much or too frequent, your vet will usually recommend low-residue dog food.

What Are The Benefits of Low Residue Dog Food?

It improves pancreas health; it’s great for diarrhea and constipation; it improves your dog’s colon health; gets rid of flatulence.

What Other Foods Can Your Dog Eat On A Low-Residue Diet?

In addition to this low residue dog food, there are some other foods you can include in your dog’s diet to help with the situation. You can include veggies. Veggies such as tomatoes, carrots, and green beans are great at improving digestibility. Also, if your dog loves a treat, you can also try low-fiber fruits. They make very delicious treats and even more importantly, they digest easily. You can feed them with bananas, melon, avocado, pumpkin, or other sugarless canned fruits.

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