These Are the Best Dog Foods for Sensitive Stomachs

Hill's Science Diet Adult Sensitive Stomach & Skin is our top pick

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 The 9 Best Dog Foods for Sensitive Stomachs of 2022, According to a Veterinarian

The Spruce Pets / Sabrina Jiang

Reviewed & Approved

Hill's Science Diet Adult Sensitive Stomach & Skin is our top recommendation. If you're looking for a wet food option, talk to your vet to find out if Royal Canin Veterinary Diet Gastrointestinal Low Fat is right for your dog.

If your pooch has a sensitive stomach, you might find that many foods cause loose stools, flatulence, or vomiting. Your dog might need a special diet. "Highly digestible proteins, carbs, and fat along with prebiotics and probiotics help dogs get back to normal quickly," says Dr. Lewis Singleton, a veterinarian at Banfield Pet Hospital in Princeton, New Jersey.

There are many dog foods on the market that claim to be specially formulated for digestion and gut health, but it's always a good idea to consult with your veterinarian to help find the right diet for your individual dog.

We researched the market and consulted with Dr. Singleton to find the best dog foods for sensitive stomachs.

Our Top Picks

Best Overall: Hill's Science Diet Adult Sensitive Stomach & Skin Dry Dog Food

4.8
Hill's Science Diet Adult Sensitive Stomach & Skin Chicken Recipe Dry Dog Food

 Courtesy of Amazon

Life Stage: Adult | Breed Size: All | Weight: 15.5 pounds | Food Type: Dry

What We Like
  • Contains real chicken and prebiotic fiber

  • Fatty acids and vitamin E promote a shiny coat

  • Made in the USA

What We Don't Like
  • Crafted with beet pulp which may not appeal to all dogs

Dr. Singleton recommends Hill's Science Diet. The Sensitive Stomach & Skin Formula is our top choice for dogs with tummy troubles, and it doesn't require a special proscription. Real chicken meat is the first ingredient blended with prebiotic fiber for digestion support and a balanced microbiome.

Dogs get the extra benefit of omega-6 fatty acids and vitamin E for healthy skin and a shiny coat. All ingredients are highly digestible to encourage nutrient absorption and ease your pet's upset stomach.

Best Budget: Purina ONE SmartBlend Sensitive Systems Formula Natural Adult Dog Food

Purina ONE SmartBlend Sensitive Systems Formula Natural Adult Dog Food

Courtesy of Amazon

Life Stage: Not listed | Breed Size: All | Weight: 31.1 pounds | Food Type: Dry

What We Like
  • Made with highly digestible ingredients

  • Contains real salmon

  • Promotes a strong immune system

What We Don't Like
  • Contains grains which may not suit all dogs' diets

If you're on a budget, Purina One SmartBlend Sensitive Systems is a great choice. This natural dog food is made with salmon, rice, barley, oat, and animal fat—all are highly digestible. Dogs also get a blend of vitamin E and omega-6 fatty acids to promote a healthy coat and skin. Although this formula is for a sensitive stomach, keep in mind it's not grain-free which is another sensitivity some dogs may have.

Best Dry: Solid Gold Leaping Waters Sensitive Stomach Grain-Free Gluten Free Dry Dog Food

Solid Gold Leaping Waters Sensitive Stomach Grain-Free Gluten Free Dry Dog Food

Courtesy of Amazon

Life Stage: Adult | Breed Size: All | Weight: 22 pounds | Food Type: Dry

What We Like
  • Nutrient-rich with probiotic support

  • Contains a special blend of 20 superfoods

What We Don't Like
  • More expensive than other brands

The best dry food for dogs with sensitive stomachs is Solid Gold Leaping Waters. The nutrient-rich, grain-free formula is packed with simple ingredients: cold-water salmon, chickpeas, lentils, peas, and chicken fat.

Leaping Waters contains a special blend of 20 superfoods that are easy to digest and selected to protect your fur baby's gut health. The recipe also includes omega-3s and omega-6s for healthy skin and a shiny coat.

Best Wet: Royal Canin Veterinary Diet Gastrointestinal Low Fat Canned Dog Food

Gastrointestinal Low Fat

Courtesy of Chewy

Life Stage: Adult | Breed Size: All | Weight: 20.4 pounds | Food Type: Canned/wet

What We Like
  • Great for dogs with gastrointestinal issues

  • Low-fat formula

  • Has digestible proteins to balance gut bacteria

What We Don't Like
  • Requires a prescription from a veterinarian

Dr. Singleton also recommends Royal Canin Gastrointestinal for dogs with tummy woes. This gut-friendly wet food provides tasty nutrition for dogs struggling with diarrhea, vomiting, appetite loss, and other gastrointestinal issues.

This food requires a prescription from a veterinarian. However, you can buy it from pet-supply sites like Chewy and Petco by entering your prescription info at checkout.

It has digestible proteins and prebiotics to balance bacteria in the gut, plus antioxidants and hearty fibers to promote digestion.

Best for Seniors: Hill's Science Diet Wet Dog Food Adult 7+

hills-science-diet
Courtesy of Amazon.

Life Stage: Adult | Breed Size: All | Weight: 9.79 pounds | Food Type: Wet

What We Like
  • High-quality protein great for older canines

  • Helps build and maintain muscle mass

What We Don't Like
  • Food is extra dry which may be hard on certain dogs

Hill's Science Diet Wet Food 7+ is the best option when it comes to a senior dog with a sensitive gut. This chicken and barley recipe is chock full of high-quality protein to help older canines build and maintain muscle.

This canned dog food has a special antioxidant blend, omega-6 fatty acids, vegetable fibers, and essential vitamins and minerals. All ingredients are carefully selected for easy digestion and immunity support. However, it's extra dry which is something to keep in mind if your canine has a tough time with certain foods.

Best for Puppies: Purina Pro Plan Dry Puppy Food Sensitive Skin & Stomach

Purina Pro Plan Dry Puppy Food Sensitive Skin & Stomach

Courtesy of Amazon

Life Stage: Not listed | Breed Size: All | Weight: 24 pounds | Food Type: Dry

What We Like
  • Combines salmon, rice, and live probiotics

  • Supports a healthy coat and skin

  • Omega-6s support growing pups' vision and brain development

What We Don't Like
  • More expensive than other brands

Purina Pro Plan is another brand Dr. Singleton often recommends. The Sensitive Skin & Stomach puppy kibble combines easy-to-digest salmon and rice with live probiotics. With omega-3s in the form of fish oil, this dry food supports a healthy coat and skin. It also has omega-6s from sunflower oil to nourish your growing pup's vision and brain development.

Best for Large Dogs: Purina Pro Plan Adult Sensitive Skin & Stomach Large Breed Formula Dog Food

Sensitive Skin & Stomach Large Breed Formula

Courtesy of PetSmart

Life Stage: Adult | Breed Size: All | Weight: 35 pounds | Food Type: Dry

What We Like
  • Stomach-friendly barley, rice, and oat

  • Contains highly digestible fibers and probiotics

  • Wheat, soy, and artificial flavor-free

What We Don't Like
  • More expensive than other brands

For canines over 50 pounds, Purina Pro Plan's Adult Sensitive Large Breed Formula is a good option. With balanced nutrition and easy digestion in mind, this dry dog food's main ingredient is salmon. After that, you'll find tummy-friendly barley, rice, oat, animal fat, and fish oil, along with highly digestible fibers, probiotics, and prebiotics.

The recipe is free of wheat, soy, and artificial flavors, which can cause upset stomachs and allergies in some larger breed dogs. Your furry friend will love the appetizing salmon flavor and appreciate not having a belly ache.

Best for Small Dogs: Blue Buffalo Basics Limited Ingredient Diet Small Breed Natural Food for Dogs

Blue Buffalo Basics Limited Ingredient Diet Small Breed Natural Food for Dogs

Courtesy of Amazon

Life Stage: Not listed | Breed Size: Small | Weight: 11 pounds | Food Type: Dry

What We Like
  • Includes real turkey, oatmeal, and pumpkin

  • Contains a medley of vitamins and minerals

  • Easy for small breeds to chew

What We Don't Like
  • Only comes in four and 11-pound bags

For pups weighing 11 pounds and lighter, consider Blue Buffalo Basics Limited Ingredient Diet Small Breed food. The pooch-approved recipe begins with real turkey and includes brown rice, oatmeal, peas, potatoes, and pumpkin. These ingredients all support the unique energy needs of smaller fur babies. It also has omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids and a medley of vitamins and minerals. Additionally, the small-bite kibble is easy for small breeds to chew, swallow, and digest.

Best Supplement: NaturVet Advanced Probiotics & Enzymes Plus Vet Strength PB6 Probiotic

NaturVet Advanced Probiotics & Enzymes Plus Vet Strength PB6 Probiotic

Courtesy of Amazon

Life Stage: Not listed | Breed Size: All | Weight: 12 ounces | Food Type: Chewables

What We Like
  • Specially formulated to balance and support the gastrointestinal tract

  • Contains six different probiotic strains

  • Treat-like flavor

What We Don't Like
  • Texture can be too crumbly sometimes

The right dog food can be a game-changer, and some cases call for a special supplement. We recommend NaturVet Advanced Probiotics & Enzymes, specially formulated to balance and support your dog's gastrointestinal tract.

PB6 Probiotic means it has six different probiotic strains. This helps the gut maintain a healthy level of good bacteria for a settled stomach and balanced intestines. Your pet will gobble up this supplement since these soft chews taste just like a treat.

Final Verdict

Overall, Hill's Science Diet Adult Sensitive Stomach & Skin is the best dog food for sensitive stomachs. This vet-recommended brand uses chicken as the first ingredient, along with an easily digestible blend of prebiotic fiber, omega-6 fatty acids, and other gentle ingredients for a balanced microbiome. If you're looking for a wet food option, talk to your vet and see if you can get a prescription for Royal Canin Veterinary Diet Gastrointestinal Low Fat. This tasty canned food nourishes dogs with appetite loss, vomiting, and diarrhea.

Why Trust The Spruce?

This roundup was researched and written by Theresa Holland, a professional writer and animal lover with substantial experience covering pet products and breed guides.

To make this list, she consulted Dr. Lewis Singleton, a veterinarian at Banfield Pet Hospital in Princeton, New Jersey. She also researched the market and reviewed ingredient lists.

Article Sources
The Spruce Pets uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.
  1. Swanson, Kelly S. "Are Prebiotics Good For Dogs And Cats? An Animal Gut Health Expert Explains - International Scientific Association For Probiotics And Prebiotics (ISAPP)". International Scientific Association For Probiotics And Prebiotics (ISAPP), 2020, https://isappscience.org/are-prebiotics-good-for-dogs-and-cats-an-animal-gut-health-expert-explains/.

  2. Hunter, Tammy, and Ernest Ward. "The Importance Of Your Pet's Skin And Coat And The Role Of Diet". VCA, https://vcahospitals.com/know-your-pet/the-importance-of-your-pets-skin-and-coat-and-the-role-of-diet.

  3. Coile, Caroline. "How To Feed The Senior Dog". American Kennel Club, 2016, https://www.akc.org/expert-advice/nutrition/how-to-feed-the-senior-dog/.

  4. Arford, Kaitlyn. "Fish Oil For Dogs". American Kennel Club, 2020, https://www.akc.org/expert-advice/nutrition/fish-oil-for-dogs/.

  5. Barnette, Catherine, and Ernest Ward. "Allergies In Dogs". VCA, https://vcahospitals.com/know-your-pet/allergy-general-in-dogs.

  6. AKC Staff. "Probiotics For Dogs". American Kennel Club, 2020, https://www.akc.org/expert-advice/nutrition/probiotics-for-dogs/.

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