We tested 25 products and found ORIJEN Gain-Free Dry Dog Food to be the best dog food for Pitbulls. It contains no fillers, so what you are purchasing is pure dog food for energy and growth.
ORIJEN is appropriate dog food for all stages of life of your Pitbull, from a puppy to a senior dog. Your dog will enjoy the different varieties of this premium dog food as it is available in several tasty combinations that are pleasing to the palate. Even picky eaters enjoy this brand of food.
We chose the best foods on this list by testing them for ingredients that are pure without fillers and a high protein and fat content that is specifically good for Pitbulls. The high protein and fat content mean that your dog will have a lot of energy and have a glistening bright coat and bright eyes too. Grain-Free is also an important aspect, as many dogs have food allergies to specific grains.
Read on to find mini-reviews of each of the 7 best dog foods for your Pitbull.
1) ORIJEN Puppy Large Grain-Free Dry Puppy Food – Best Overall
This dog food is the best of all for your Pitbull, no matter what age it is. The large puppy food provides extra fat and protein for fast-growing breeds of puppies. It has fresh or raw turkey and chicken, sustainably farmed fish, and range-free eggs in the formula to pack it with protein and healthy fats. It has 85% premium animal ingredients of both poultry and fish to provide your pup with a great source of all its essential vitamins, minerals, and protein.
All of the different types of ORIJEN Grain-Free Dry Dog Food are available in 25-pound bags for your convenience, so you won’t need to buy it on a weekly basis.
2) Hill’s Prescription Diet i/d Digestive Care Stress Chicken Flavor Dry Dog Food – Best Food for Digestive Issues
Many times, large breed dogs such as Pitbulls will eat very fast and can have digestive issues. This dry dog food is specially formulated to have highly digestible sources of protein and a low quantity of fat to aid in digestion. It also uses Hill’s ActiveBiome+ in it to help your puppy to absorb nutrients properly to lead to healthy gut bacteria. It has prebiotics in it to aid in regular bowel movements and help with the gastrointestinal balance in the body. It also has added antioxidants to help your pup’s urinary system, and his/her immune system as well. It’s a tasty blend of food that gets the protein from chicken and fish and has a definite chicken flavor that you can even smell when you open the bag.
3) Blue Buffalo Life Protection Formula Puppy Chicken & Brown Rice Recipe Dry Dog Food – For Health and Well Being
This premium dry dog food has smaller pieces of kibble to make it easier to eat when your Pitbull puppy is very young. The smaller size kibble also helps to prevent tartar buildup on your puppy’s teeth. It has real meat as the number one ingredient, plus it’s fortified with whole grains, vegetables, and fruit. It includes the patented LifeSource Bits, which is a blend of vitamins and nutrients plus antioxidants. Its first ingredient is real protein-rich chicken for a premium flavor that puppies love. Essential vitamins are added in the form of calcium and phosphorus for growing puppies to have strong teeth and bones.
It includes both ARA and DHA to promote eye development, healthy muscle growth, and for brain health as well. Omega 3 and 6 fatty acids are added to the formula for healthy coats and skin that is shiny and bright. Immune system health is supported by chelated minerals, antioxidants, and vitamins. This product doesn’t contain corn, soy, wheat, or by-product meals which are used as fillers in inexpensive foods.
4) American Journey Puppy Lamb & Sweet Potato Recipe Grain – For High-Quality Protein
This premium dry dog food is packed full of nutrition to give your puppy the fuel he needs for his adventures as he grows. It has real meat in the form of deboned lamb that provides amino acids and protein to grow lean muscle mass. The addition of sweet potatoes and chickpeas provides lasting energy to your pup’s diet. It also has blueberries, carrots, and dried kelp in it to provide phytonutrients, antioxidants, and fiber to keep your puppy in tip-top shape. DHA and omega 3 fatty acids are derived from salmon oil and flaxseed are included in the formula for the healthy development of your puppy’s brain and eyes. This formula also promotes healthy skin and coats in puppies. It’s a grain-free formula with no wheat, corn, or soy in it to avoid food sensitivities.
5) Purina ONE SmartBlend Large Breed Puppy Formula Dry Dog Food – For Appropriate Growth Rate
This dry dog food is made for large breed puppies to help them grow up strong and big with all the ingredients to support the total nutrition of large breed puppies. Real chicken is the first ingredient for protein with no fillers to support your puppy’s growing muscles and to aid in having a healthy heart. It includes antioxidants plus vitamins E and A, as well as selenium to support a very strong immune system as it grows larger. Its pleasing taste is made up of a mixture of both crunchy kibble and tender morsels of high protein food for a variety all in one food. It has glucosamine to help your Pittie have healthy joints, which is very important in large breed puppies that are susceptible to hip dysplasia. Omega 6 fatty acids are included to promote healthy skin and a healthy and shiny coat. Its specialized formula includes easy to digest protein to avoid stomach upsets and it has no artificial colors, flavors, or preservatives in it.
6) Purina Pro Plan Development Sensitive Skin & Stomach Salmon & Rice Large Breed Dry Puppy Food – For Sensitive Skin and Stomachs
Some large breed puppies, such as Pitbulls, can have skin and stomach sensitivities even when they are very young. This dry dog food is fortified with probiotics in order to maintain a worry-free digestive aid as is common in stomach disorders. It also includes vitamin A and sunflower oil to promote healthy skin and coats in puppies. The main ingredient is real salmon, which is easy to digest for puppies and will avoid stomach sensitivities. It also has no wheat, soy, or corn, which can cause digestive issues if your puppy has a food allergy. It’s also free of artificial colors and flavors, which again can cause stomach upset in large breed pups. The addition of oatmeal to this formula helps in digestion and the antioxidants support immune health. DHA from fish oil supports a growing puppy’s vision and brain development.
7) PEDIGREE Puppy Growth & Protection Chicken & Vegetable Flavor Dry Dog Food – For Aid in Digestion and Fiber
This puppy food has complete and balanced nutrition with vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants to help your puppy have a healthy lifestyle. It has DHA added for brain development, which is healthy, and phosphorus, and calcium for strong bones and healthy teeth. It has added whole grains and a specialized fiber blend to support healthy digestive systems and small crunchy bites to help clean your Pitbull puppy’s teeth. This food is packed with chicken flavor that your puppy will love. It has a large number of beneficial nutrients and vitamins added, such as calcium, riboflavin, vitamin B6, vitamin A, vitamin B1, folic acid, Vitamin D3, and Vitamin B12 for lasting energy in every bite. The easy-to-digest formula helps to promote good firm stools in puppies and it actually reduces the number of stools on your lawn.
There are literally hundreds of puppy foods available in grocery stores, pet stores, online, and in big box stores. It can be confusing as to what your puppy needs in his food or what he/she doesn’t need. Large breed puppies, such as Pitbulls, do have different food and nutrition requirements than small puppies, adult dogs, or senior dogs. There are several items you want to look at when choosing large breed puppy food.
The first and most important thing to note is that the bag of dog food states that it is approved by The Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO) as being a complete and balanced diet for your puppy. This means that the formula has been tested diligently to make certain it contains all of the nutrients that your puppy needs on a daily basis.
It’s best to find a formula that has all-natural ingredients in it that you recognize as being “people food”, such as meats, poultry, and fish as well as vegetables. The first ingredient on the bag of dog food should always be a lean protein that is meat, fish, or poultry and not listed as a “by-product.”
Large Breed Pitbull Puppies Nutritional Needs
Large breed puppies have very different nutritional needs than small breed puppies. Small breeds can mature in size and weight at about 9 months, whereas large breed puppies, such as Pitbulls, may not reach their final size and weight until they reach up to 24 months of age. The growth rate is also very different, as the large breed pups will grow much faster. If your large breed puppy gets too many calories or too much calcium, he can actually grow too fast and put stress on his joints to develop hip dysplasia. You need to look for the correct amount of fat, calcium, vitamins, and minerals as well as nutrients.
According to the AAFCO, large breed puppy food should have a maximum of 4.5 grams of calcium for every 1,000 calories of the food–this equates to 1.8% for a maximum amount of calcium to manage good bone growth without putting stress on your Pitte’s joints.
The first ingredient on the bag should be animal or fish-based proteins for organ, skin, coat, and muscle growth in your large breed puppy. Vitamins and fish oils are good for proper growth as well as healthy skin and coats. It should also contain calcium to grow strong teeth and bones and include fiber to keep the digestive system working properly with the correct amount of good bacteria in the gut.
How Much Should I Feed My Large Breed Pitbull Puppy?
The best way in which to determine how much to feed your Pitbull puppy is to find its weight. Weigh yourself on a bathroom scale and then weigh yourself while holding your new four-legged friend. Subtract your weight from the weight of both of you to get your puppy’s actual weight.
Next, follow the guidelines on the rear of the bag of dry dog food as to the quantity your pooch should eat on a daily basis. For the best digestive health of your puppy, you should divide his daily ration into 3 to 4 meals a day instead of just putting all the food in his dish and allowing him to free feed. In most large breeds of puppies, they will overeat if given the chance to do so. It’s common in large breed puppies to develop bloat, which can be a life-threatening condition from eating too much at once.
You will need to increase the amount of food your puppy eats in each meal as he grows to maintain his growth rate and be at a good and healthy weight overall. When he goes through a growth spurt and his legs seem to have gotten longer and he looks a bit thinner, you can re-weigh him and then increase the amount of his daily ration according to his weight. The more playful and excitable your puppy is, the more calories he will burn, so most active puppies require more food than a puppy that is quite laid back.
Also, don’t exercise or play with your puppy too much just before or after he eats to avoid getting bloat. Too much stimulation can cause him digestive upset.
Make sure your Pitbull puppy has a large bowl of fresh clean water every day where he can access it easily. Feeding dry dog food or kibble requires your pooch to have a lot of water so that he doesn’t get constipated from the dry food. If you have a fenced-in backyard and take your puppy out to play, keep a large bowl of water outside as well and place it in a shady area of the lawn during the summer months to keep it cool.
Some Pitbulls slobber a lot more than others because of the manner in which the mouth is shaped. You may want to put a large table mat underneath the food and water bowls to catch any drool along with extra food and water that comes with it when your Pittie is eating and drinking.
Why Feed Dry Dog Food or Kibble to My Pitbull?
Dry dog food or kibble is easier to manage when feeding your puppy. It’s widely available in most stores and is a less expensive type of food than soft food in pouches or canned/wet food. When you feed moist food or wet food to your pooch, it is only good for a short amount of time before it starts to degrade. If you feed your dog wet or canned food outside, it will spoil within the course of an hour or so in the summertime and this can make him sick.
Wet and moist foods stick to your dog’s teeth rather than helping to clean them as crunchy kibble does. It’s also easy to store dry dog food in its original bag with a chip clip on it to keep it fresh or you can put it in an air-tight container with a lid to store it.
How Many Dog Treats Can I Give My Large Breed Puppy?
Whether you have a puppy, an adult dog, or a senior dog, they should only have about 10% or less of their diet in dog or puppy treats. These types of commercial treats are very high in calories and sugar content, which isn’t good for them. The rule of thumb is to limit high-calorie treats to 2 a day for any dog, no matter what size or age they are.
Too many treats and calories contribute to obesity, which in turn can lead to hip dysplasia and arthritis in your dog’s joints later in life. Dogs can also become diabetic and the treatment includes watching their diet very closely with your veterinarian’s approval as well as giving them insulin shots on a daily basis.
What Are Good Alternatives to Commercial Dog Treats?
The good news is that most food you have in your pantry or in your refrigerator are very good items to substitute for high-calorie dog treats. Most dogs love a few bites of healthy fruits or vegetables–especially if you are sharing some with them. If you are eating something and your pup gets some of it, he will then consider this a high-value treat becasue it is “people food.”
SOme of the items you can try your pooch on include apples, watermelon, bananas, strawberries and blueberries. They also enjoy their veggies as well such as green peas, carrots, green beans, cooked sweet potatoes, brocolli, and cooked squash.
We found the best puppy food for Pitbulls to be OFIGEN Large Breed Puppy Food because it’s readily available, and it’s available in large sizes to be cost efficient and it contains everything your puppy needs in it to grow up big and strong.