What’s the Best Dog Food if Your Dog Needs to Gain Weight?

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What’s the Best Dog Food if Your Dog Needs to Gain Weight?

Dogs need to maintain a healthy weight and, more often than not, we are told by their veterinarian that our overweight dog has to lose some flab and adapt the dog’s diet to retain the ideal weight. All those extra treats start to pile on the pounds and starting a weight loss diet is inevitable. However, there are some circumstances where the opposite is true, and your pup is in need of a high-calorie diet rather than losing some. Perhaps they are recovering from illness, are a newly adopted stray, are highly active or just a picky eater. As with any weight adjustment, you should discuss it with your dog’s veterinarian to make sure there are no underlying health issues for the weight changes. If your pup gets a clean bill of health, then its time to get a comprehensive plan in place to make sure your pup is going about weight gain in the correct way. As with any significant dietary change, if it is not done properly, it can lead to serious health issues. Determine with your veterinarian is you have underweight dogs:

  • The amount of weight your dog needs to gain
  • What their daily caloric intake should be
  • How much exercise is needed so they don’t burn excessive calories but stay healthy
  • Make sure to have followed up vet appointments to see progress and adjust calories  

What Brand of Dog Food is Best for Weight Gain?

Like with weight loss, every dog is different when it comes to their food and nutrition requirements and the decision for the appropriate food needs to be based on:

  • Age
  • Weight
  • Breed
  • Activity levels
  • Health condition

It’s important to make sure it’s a product that will help your pup add lean muscle because, if the fat content in the food is too high, it will cause your pooch to gain more unnecessary weight and continue to be detrimental to his health. When you look at food nutrients you need to assess the amount of protein, carbohydrates, vitamins, minerals, and fat as each will need to meet your dog’s current requirements. You want to improve your pup’s nutrition through high-protein dog food to increase body weight, and not just by adding calories.  Find a product has meat, vegetables, and fruits and is free of:

  • Artificial ingredients
  • Unnecessary fillers
  • Toxic chemicals
  • Cereal grains
  • Unnamed by-products
  • Unnamed meat meal

Top Picks

Here is our list of high-quality dog food brands that are packed with the ideal ingredients for the perfect diet. If you are looking for dog food to gain weight, you will surely find it below:

Purina ONE SmartBlend True Instinct Grain-Free Nutrient-Dense Formula

This formula is great for a skinny dog that is very much underweight. It is nutrient-dense, grain-free and contains real chicken, chicken meal, cassava root, and sweet potatoes. Real beef is its number one ingredient. It has almost 30% crude protein and needs 442 kcal of metabolizable energy per cup of food. It can be served dry or wet and has great taste. It is full of vitamins and minerals, glucosamine and omega-3 and 6 fatty acids that adult dogs need. This weight gainer is good for dogs who already have an active lifestyle and need some extra pounds for health. This dry dog food gives them lots of energy throughout the day to stay active while they look forward to their next meal.

Purina Pro Plan Sport All Life Stages

This formula is perfect for nutrition and healthy weight gain and maintains the dog’s health. It promotes strength and endurance with 30% protein from real chicken as the first ingredient. It is a great way to build muscle. It is improved with essential amino acids, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants plus glucosamine for healthy joints and mobility. This formula was created for working dogs and canine athletes but is also highly beneficial for pups that need to put on weight. The recipe itself is formulated with DHA, EPA, omega-3 and 6 fatty acids making every bite tasty and healthy. It further benefits a dog’s healthy lifestyle by having no artificial colors, flavors or preservatives.

Merrick Grain-Free Real Chicken & Sweet Potato Recipe

This recipe is an allergy friendly product with a grain-free approach. Its primary ingredient is real, deboned chicken enhanced with sweet potatoes, peas, apples, and blueberries. It has lots of healthy vitamins and minerals for weight gain and balanced nutrition. With 38% protein in addition to glucosamine, chondroitin, omega-3 & 6 fatty acids this product is perfect for keeping your pup full and healthy. There are no artificial colors, flavors, or preservatives making this product a great all-round food for your pup.

Adirondack 30% High Fat Performance Recipe

A product that is great for development and weight gain with 30% protein and 20% fat. It is premium-quality, all-natural food filled with essential vitamins, minerals, and nutrients that offer solid balanced nutrition. Probiotics support nutrient absorption and help digestive health while omega-3 and 6 fatty acids nourish healthy skin and coats. There are no artificial colors or additives. A great way to offer quality food to active dogs that need to gain a few extra pounds.

Nulo Freestyle Limited Plus Salmon Recipe Grain-Free

This great product has the single animal meat source of salmon for 30% crude protein supporting lean muscle mass. This is in addition to all the vitamins, antioxidants, and minerals your pup needs to gain weight. It has lots of specially formulated probiotics, GAnedenBC30, to help digestive and immune health along with omega oils from salmon and canola oils. It is made with fewer allergens and does not have artificial colors or preservatives. With this food as your pup’s new favorite, he will be gaining the appropriate weight in no time.


All these great dry dog foods have quality nutrients to help your dog gain weight in a healthy capacity. If he is a growing pup, a working dog, recovering from illness, a rescue dog, or simply a dog that is a picky eater, then one of these recipes are made for him. Once you’ve discussed your pup’s health with the veterinarian, then ask them for some food suggestions and start your research. A few hours of reading nutritional labels and assessing food content will make your choice for your pet easier. If you pick food with quality ingredients that will not only help him gain weight but take care of his overall health, then your dog will be back to his optimal weight in no time.

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