Does your dog have diabetes? If so, it’s important to pay careful attention to what you feed it. The food your pet eats plays a significant role in its health. Therefore, it’s very important to make sure you’re feeding them a diet with diabetic dog food that is appropriate for them.

When selecting dog food for your pet, you’ll want to make sure that it’s got a moderate amount of fiber, plenty of protein, low levels of carbs, and minimal fat. These top choices are ordered by fat content so that the foods with the least amount of fat are listed first. Before we jump into the best diabetic dog food options to consider for your pet let’s go over the basics of diabetes in dogs.

How Does a Dog Become Diabetic?

There are two ways in which dogs acquire diabetes – insulin-deficiency and insulin-resistance. Insulin-deficiency diabetes happens when the body of the dog is unable to produce enough insulin. This occurs when the pancreas is improperly functioning or damaged. Dogs with insulin-deficiency diabetes require daily shots to fill in the missing insulin. Insulin-deficiency diabetes is the most common form of diabetes in dogs.

Insulin-resistance diabetes happens when the pancreas is able to produce some insulin; however, the dog’s body is unable to use the insulin properly. The cells fail to respond to the insulin. This form of diabetes can particularly happen in adult dogs that are obese.

How Common Is It for a Dog to Have Diabetes?

Diabetes among dogs and cats are common. For dogs, 1 in 100 to 1 in 500 is likely to have diabetes. Any breed of dog can develop diabetes. However, some breeds are more prone to developing the condition. Among those breeds are Pomeranians, terriers, golden retrievers, toy poodles, cocker spaniels, and dachshunds.

Diabetes commonly occurs among dogs between 4 and 14 years old. Female dogs are also more prone to diabetes compared to male dogs.

What are the Signs of Diabetes in Dogs?

There are several signs that that indicate your dog may have diabetes. Some of the most common signs of diabetes in dogs are increased thirst and frequent urination. If your cat and dogs have increased food intake but still lose weight, it is most likely that your pets have diabetes mellitus.

Sudden weight loss is also typical due to increased metabolism. At other times, your pet showing signs of obesity is also a candidate of diabetes. If your dog is obese, have it checked for blood glucose level to ensure that it is safe from diabetes. A diabetic dog or cat also shows fatigue and weakness;  thinning of hair; and cloudy vision.

Treatment of diabetes begins with a complete change in diet. Offering your diabetic pets high-quality dog foods, particularly diabetic dog food brands and diabetic dog treats, can help reduce the blood sugar level in your dog’s body. Pet owners should be aware of the kind of foods to serve their canines to prevent the risk of getting diabetes. Adding fiber – insoluble or soluble – can aid in preventing diabetes.

Things to Keep in Mind When Looking for Diabetic Dog Food

Does your dog have increased blood sugar level? If your dog has been diagnosed with diabetes you may need to make some changes in its diet. For dog foods for diabetic dogs, most veterinarians require foods rich in fiber, which works introducing the rate of glucose released in the bloodstream. Foods for diabetic dogs should contain fiber because they help take up space in the digestive tract; thus, making the dog feel full.

Dogs with diabetes mellitus benefit from foods that do not increase the blood glucose levels. Homemade diabetic dog foods should have a low glycemic index. Low-fat foods are also among the best dog food for diabetic dogs. This helps ensure your canine does not consume an excessive amount of calories, and that the dog’s diet contains more protein.

The Best Diabetic Dog Foods to Consider

1. Pedigree Meaty Ground Dinner Weight Management

a dog starring at some dog treats

This option makes it to the top of our list due to its super low-fat content, which ranges between 2-4%. It’s a canned wet food option, with a chicken and rice flavor. But there are some drawbacks to this option, as it is quite low in fiber. Many diabetic dogs benefit from a diet with lots of fiber. If your vet has recommended that you give your pet plenty of fiber, then this is an option which you’d need to supplement with other foods to achieve that goal.
Check the price on Amazon.

2. Purina Pro Plan Turkey & Rice Entree Morsels in Gravy

Here’s another wet food option with a very similar amount of fat of 2-4.5%. Like the first option, it’s also not a suitable exclusive choice for a high fiber diet and would need to be supplemented. But because of the super low-fat content and high amount of protein, it’s still a good diabetic dog food choice.
Check the price on Amazon.

3. Wellness CORE Weight Management Formula

Although this diabetic dog food option is just slightly higher in fat, with minimum levels at 3.5%, it’s a super healthy option to offer your dog. It’s grain free, and a quick glance at the list of ingredients reveals several meat types followed by fruit and vegetable ingredients. This translates to a slightly higher fiber content, although it’s still far lower than what you’ll find in dry food. This is a good quality option to choose if you want to avoid grain and cheap filler ingredients.
Check the price on Amazon.

4. Solid Gold Fit and Fabulous Holistic Dry Dog Food

a cute little puppy

This dry dog food option has Alaskan Pollock and other super healthy ingredients. The fat content ranges between 6.5% and 9%, which is still quite low when compared to most regular dog food options. And that fat content also features healthy fats such as salmon oil and olive oil. This is an awesome high fiber option, and it is free of any corn, soy, and wheat products.
Check the price on Amazon.

5. Nutro Lite Chicken, Brown Rice & Oatmeal Weight Loss Dog Food

If GMO foods are products you prefer to avoid, then you’ll be glad to know that this option is free of GMO ingredients. There are also no corn, wheat, or soy proteins in this high fiber diabetic dog food option. The minimum fat content is 7%, and a mixture of chicken and whole grains such as rice and oatmeal make this a tasty option for your pup.
Check the price on Amazon.

6. Merrick Grain Free Healthy Weight Recipe Dog Food

Here’s a diabetic dog food option which is totally free of grain. The first ingredient here is beef, and it also contains potatoes and other fruits and veggies. The minimum fat content is 8%, and it partially made up of flaxseed and salmon oils. These are healthy sources of fat which may help keep your dog’s coat in top shape. This choice is also high in fiber, and include antioxidant-rich blueberries.
Check the price on Amazon.

7. Wellness CORE Grain-Free Reduced Fat Formula

The fat content of this diabetic dog food option ranges between 10% and 12%. While this is slightly higher than some of the above options, it’s still quite low for dog food. The fiber content is moderately high. This grain-free formula features turkey, chicken, salmon oil, potatoes, and peas as well as other fruits and vegetables. With no artificial colors, flavors, preservatives, or meat by-products this is a great naturally healthy choice for your dog.
Check the price on Amazon.

8. Bil-Jac Reduced Fat Adult Dry Dog Food

a large dog breed

Here’s an option with a slightly lower fiber content, which may be helpful if your dog doesn’t respond well to high fiber. It has a fat content of 10-12.5%. The first few ingredients listed are chicken organs, corn meal, chicken, and oatmeal. This option also has reduced salt.
Check the price on Amazon.

9. Blue Buffalo Healthy Weight Chicken & Brown Rice Adult Dry Dog Food

This chicken and brown rice kibble option is specially formulated for smaller breeds. With no corn, wheat, or soy, the grains in this dog food consist of whole grains such as rice, oatmeal, and barley. The fat content is a minimum of 10%, and this diabetic dog food also has a fairly high fiber content.
Check the price on Amazon.

This list isn’t exhaustive, but it does round up some of the top low-fat options which will help your dog live with diabetes. Of course, if your vet prescribes a specific diabetic dog food you’ll need to use that. But when you’ve simply got recommended guidelines it can be difficult to wade through all of the options and find the best food for your dog. By narrowing down the options with this list, we hope you’ll be able to find that healthiest choice to feed your beloved pet.

Image sources: 1, 2, 3, 4