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10 Best Dog Foods To Gain Muscle

Breeding Business is passionate about all sorts of domesticated pets. They have written dozens of articles across the web.
Published on
Friday 28 August 2020
Last updated on
Tuesday 9 May 2023
best dog food to gain muscle
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Although it is more common to alter a dog’s diet to help them lose weight, there is dog food to gain muscle available on the market. This can be useful if your dog is losing weight or if you want them to have a higher muscle percentage. Diet actually influences weight and muscle gain more than many types of exercise. So using these two in combination can make a huge difference.

You may want to use muscle gain dog food if you wish to involve your dog in sports. This could be agility training, weight pulling, and even trebell. Regardless of your sport of choice, these products are sure to aid your dog. Even if you are just aiming to help your pooch have a healthier physique, we have all the information you need.

10 Best Dog Foods to Gain Muscle

We have reviewed seven of the best dog foods to gain muscle and listed them all for you here. From the pros to the cons, we’ve got you covered.

1. Bully Max Muscle Building Chews for Dogs

Bully Max has created their vet-approved performance chews with guaranteed results of muscle growth. It is advertised as the #1 canine performance brand worldwide. They provide over 17 ingredients that contribute to muscle growth. It is clear why this brand is a well-renowned dog food to gain muscles.

Many owners have reviewed the product and rated it very highly. Owners with underweight dogs have adored the product, mentioning how their pups have quickly gained weight and even muscle mass. Other owners that have been interested in muscle mass alone have also been pleased with the results of the product. Some users have stated they saw results within two weeks.

On the other hand, there are a few users who were unhappy with the product. The reoccurring issue seemed to be the smell and flavor, some dogs were simply not interested in the product. This may be due to personal preference though.


  • Promotes lean muscle development
  • Contains 17 ingredients that promote healthy growth
  • Some customers see the result in their dogs within two weeks


  • Some dogs are not interested in the flavor and smell
  • Not very affordable

2. Gorilla Max Ultra Performance Dog Food

This dog food created by Gorilla Max has increased calories per cup to help your dog grow large muscle mass. It is advertised to hold 600 calories per cup compared to the usual average of 320 calories per cup. Because of the higher calorie amount, the brand states it will last a lot longer than other dog foods because dogs require less of it daily.

Owners report that their dogs love the flavoring of this dog food. And it has not only benefited dogs through muscle growth but also through healthier and shinier coats. Owners of Pitbulls particularity boast about this brand, mentioning how it brought definition to their dog quickly and effectively.

The main negative comment posted in reviews is due to the packaging. On the front of the packet is an aggressive-looking Pitbull, owners state that this displays association with dogfighting. They say that it portrays the breed badly and should not be the cover of a popular brand.


  • Contains an average of 600 calories per cup
  • Has an enticing flavor
  • Promotes healthier coat and skin


  • Needs to improve in packaging
  • Kibble size is too small

3. Bully Max High-Performance Super Premium Dog Food

Bully Max has created another high-calorie dog food aimed to help muscle gain. Each cup is estimated to total 535 calories which is much higher than the average of 320 calories per cup. With its triple check system, there has never been a batch of this food to have ever been recalled. Furthermore, this food can be used from puppies as young as four weeks old and any age after that.

Customers adore the quick working mix, dogs gain weight at a fast pace but combined with exercise, this is pretty much all muscle gain. Users have also disclosed that this food has helped their pups with sensitive stomachs and runny stools. With 3.8% of crude fiber, this mix is sure to help your dog’s digestive system as well.

Multiple users have mentioned how their dog has not changed physically since the use of this food brand other than a shinier coat. Furthermore, users have stated that this is very expensive, especially for a brand they don’t consider to work. It may be that these users did not give the product enough time for changes, but we cannot be sure.


  • Has 535 calories per serving
  • Suitable for dogs with stomach sensitivities
  • Improves digestive health


  • Not effective for some dogs
  • It is pricey

4. Hill’s Science Diet Dry Dog Food

Although not directed at muscle growth, Hill‘s science dry dog food has been attributed to muscle growth due to all the healthy ingredients and percentages within. This is a dry dog food with lamb favoring, enough to entice any dog. With their high-quality protein, your dog is sure to maintain and even grow muscles in a healthy manner.

This recipe has been reviewed to help healthy weight gain and normalize a dog’s figure. Toned breeds quickly meet their idealized size and weight with Hill‘s dog food. Owners have praised how much this food has helped their pup’s health and digestive system. Dogs have been noted to stop vomiting, defecate normally, and have increased energy.

Multiple users have commented on the smell of the product in general and more recent batches. Apparently, the scent is very pungent, and to some, unpleasant. Many longtime customers have mentioned changing brands because of products with recent batches.


  • It has an enticing flavor and smell
  • Contains high-quality protein
  • It helps maintain a healthy weight


  • It has a strong smell
  • Some picky eaters didn’t like the food

5. Diamond Naturals Adult Large Breed Real Meat Recipe

With free-range lamb, this natural meat recipe with rice is ideal to bulk up any dog. Diamond Naturals created this mix with premium ingredients to provide your dog with the highest quality diet. This mix contains antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals to benefit your dog’s nutritional needs in every aspect.

Many users boast of this mix helping with weight gain, muscle definition, and a healthy immune system. Owners have stated that it has helped their dog’s joints and mobility, which can help towards muscle growth. Furthermore, they also mentioned a noticeable increase in energy from the food swap, which would help with stamina for exercise.

Other users have complained that this mix has caused their dog to feel ill and have an upset stomach.


  • Rich in essential vitamins and minerals
  • Boosts immunity
  • Manages weight


  • Can cause an upset stomach to some dogs

6. Diamond Performance Recipe with Meat First

Diamond has created their high protein, multi-veg mix to ensure your dog is receiving the best diet. They have advertised that their number one ingredient is real chicken, a sure way to encourage your dog to eat their food with real flavoring.

Multiple reviews elaborate on the aesthetic benefits of these foods. From their new shiny coat, cleaner teeth, and more defined bodies, owners are very happy with these positive changes.

A few owners have complained about gastrointestinal distress in their pups after transferring them to this food brand. However, many owners are not aware of the proper method of transferring a dog onto a new food brand and it can cause such symptoms, so this may be the cause.


  • Contains real chicken
  • Promotes healthier coats, skin, and teeth
  • Highly palatable


  • Can cause GI upset

7. Canidae All Life Stages, Premium Dry Dog Food

High-protein dog food by Canidae is their lamb meal and rice formula mix. The high protein content is wonderful for any dog attempting to gain weight or muscle mass. Furthermore, the mix of whole grains allows for a balanced diet enriched with vitamins and minerals.

Owners adore the variety of nutrients in this mix alongside its quality taste that attracts nearly every pup. From young to old, this bled has benefited their pup. With the high protein mix, many owners have noticed their dog gaining weight and muscles over time.

Multiple users have complained that this mix has upset their dog’s stomach leading to vomiting and diarrhea. This may be because the owner introduced the new food brand too quickly, but there is no sure proof either way.


  • High in protein content
  • Helps dogs to maintain a healthy weight
  • Contains wholesome grains


  • Some dogs had upset stomachs

8. VICTOR Super Premium Dog Food – Hi-Pro Plus Dry Dog Food

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Victor Super Premium provides a gluten-free and high-protein diet to your dogs. It is nutrient-dense with a flavorful taste that your dog will surely love. This dry dog food provides sustained energy for sporting or active dogs with high physical demands.

It has 30% protein from high-quality beef, pork, fish, and chicken meals. It is suitable for pregnant dogs, puppies, and lactating females. This dog food is also suitable for all sizes and life stages of all dog breeds. It is also rich in essential fatty acids for healthier skin and coats.


  • Promotes healthy coat and skin
  • Supports metabolic function
  • Boosts immunity


  • Can cause sickness to some dogs
  • Has a strong smell

9. Purina Pro Plan Performance – High Protein Dry Dog Food

Another great food from Purina is the high-calorie and high-protein dry dog food, chicken, and rice recipe. It has concentrated nutrition that optimizes oxygen metabolism for maximum endurance. It contains real chicken as the first ingredient and major source of protein.

This is also rich in essential amino acids, 30% protein, and 20% fat fuel for muscle building. This dog food is suitable for working, sporting, and other active dogs. It is also rich in omega-3 fatty acids and glucosamine for increased mobility and joint health. Additionally, it also contains DHA for cognitive development.


  • Strengthens stamina for active dogs
  • Rich in essential amino acids
  • Promotes healthy joints and bones


  • Some bags arrived later than expected
  • It is pricey

10. CRAVE Grain Free Adult High Protein Natural Dry Dog Food with Protein

Lastly, we have Crave dry dog food that is rich in fish protein. It contains salmon and white fish as the major sources of protein. It is also rich in essential vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients that your dog needs. This dog food has a mix of real ingredients and a full meaty flavor that dogs love.

It has 34% protein which allows lean and strong muscle development. This dry, grain-free dog food is also free from corn, soy, and wheat. It has no artificial colors, flavors, and preservatives. It can provide nutrition for small to large breed dogs.


  • Contains high-quality animal protein
  • Rich in essential fatty acids
  • Free from artificial additives, preservatives, and flavors


  • Can cause an upset stomach in some dogs
  • Small kibble size
exercise and diet to bulk up a dog
Combine a high protein diet with exercise to bulk up your dog!

What are Weight Gain Foods for Dogs?

These foods are a type of dog food to gain muscle. They have higher percentages of protein and a reduced percentage of carbohydrates and fats, as seen in most store-bought dog foods. Regular dog food has around 50% carbohydrate, 20% protein, and 10% fat content. Whereas weight gain dog food has around 30% protein, 25% fat, and generally smaller percentages of carbohydrates. Fat and carbohydrates that are not used for daily energy needs are stored, this is where excess fat comes from and causes weight gain in your dogs. If the levels of carbs and fats are reduced, this helps to decrease weight gain.

A decrease in carbohydrates and fats leads to weight loss. Protein, though, can be a replacement energy provider instead of carbs. Furthermore, protein helps muscle growth and repair. Therefore, a higher protein content provided in dog food will help your pup to prevent fat storage and gain muscle. Higher levels of protein are not only a wonderful energy source but higher levels of protein consumption aid towards a faster metabolism. The growth of muscle aids towards a higher metabolism and weight loss as muscle helps to burn fat. Therefore, the increase of protein has a positive influence on many factors of your dog’s biological and physical health.

How To Choose The Right Dog foods To Gain Muscle?

Similar to deciding what regular brand of dog food is right for your pup, there are some types of dog food to gain muscle that are better than others. Here are the main factors you should evaluate before making a purchase.

Meat-Based Protein

meat protein for muscle growth
For muscle growth, choose a dog food with high protein content.

Meat-based protein should be one of the main ingredients in any muscle growth dog food. Protein can be used as a replacement for day-to-day required energy for dogs. Furthermore, dogs are able to break down protein molecules much more easily. Therefore they can be used more efficiently and can make your dog feel more energized.

Furthermore, protein aids with muscle growth and repair. This means that if you are interested in your dog appearing more muscly in appearance, then an increased amount of protein will aid with this. Muscles develop through many minor tears in them from exercise, these heal thicker which leads to increased muscle mass. Therefore, a larger content of protein in your dog’s food will aid in the repair of these tiny tears and lead to a more toned dog with more strength.

Adequate Fiber Contents

Fiber is a key component of every dog’s diet. It aids in proper digestion and allows a dog to pass healthy stool effectively. It thickens the digestive material and prevents diarrhea. Furthermore, a dog consuming enough fiber will prevent hemorrhoids. These can cause severe pain and even result in your dog eating less.

Another point to note is that fiber can help a dog feel more full in general and for longer periods of time. This can stop a pup from overeating or begging for snacks as they do not feel hungry. Fiber can also help create a healthier dog as it can aid in creating healthy bacteria in the gut alongside increasing your pup’s immune system. But how does this benefit muscle growth? Well, a healthier dog functions more effectively on all fronts biologically. If a dog is feeling unwell, its body will use the consumed energy to target fighting pathogens or repair the dog’s body.

Includes all Essential Vitamins And Mineral

A high quantity of proper vitamins and minerals help maintain a good health system for your dog alongside increasing their metabolism. With over twenty different kinds of vitamins and minerals, it is important to check that the dog food you are choosing has a variety.

Many owners wonder if a lack of vitamins will really make a difference as to whether a dog can gain weight or muscle. The number of vitamins and minerals do truly make a difference though. For example, calcium and phosphorus can influence the strength of your dog’s teeth and bones. Weak teeth can cause pain and influence how much a dog will eat, preventing them from gaining muscle or energy from food. Weak bones can lead to pain or fractures which prevent a dog from exercising to bulk up or be involved in sports. Alongside the obvious negative of an unhealthy or unhappy pup, a lack of vitamins and minerals truly affects muscle gain.


You may not think that flavor is that important in dog food to gain muscle. But your dog may only eat their food sometimes or will refuse to eat it at all. Therefore they may actually begin losing weight and becoming unhealthy! You are actually moving further away from your target and your pup will be feeling unhappy. Furthermore, you will have spent a lot of money on a new type of food that has gone to waste.

There are two things you can do to try to avoid these scenarios taking place. Firstly, for any bag you are considering, make sure that it has some real meat flavoring or real meat included. This will increase the likelihood of your dog-loving the food and wanting to eat it. Also, be sure to know what your dog’s favorite food is! If they prefer chicken, check out some chicken-based muscle gain dog food. Finally, be sure to read reviews to see if dogs enjoyed the taste of the brand you are checking out.

increasing dog metabolism
Proper vitamins and minerals can increase the metabolism of your dog!

Dog Foods for Gaining Muscle – FAQs

To make sure you feel fully informed about dog food to gain muscle, we have put together these FAQs.

What is the Best Dog Food to Build Muscle?

We have voted Bully Max‘s muscle-building chews for dogs mix as our number one recommended product for gaining muscle. It is advertised as the #1 canine performance brand worldwide and has vet approval. These two points alone make the product stand out against the competition. Check out our review above for more information.

What can I feed my Dog to Help them Gain Weight?

Weight gain can be increased with food of a higher percentage of carbohydrates, fats, and proteins. These are used for energy and weight gain. Any energy that is not used from these products is stored, this is where weight gain comes in. Furthermore, muscles weigh more than fat, so increasing your dog’s protein and exercise amount daily will aid towards their overall weight gain.

How can I Bulk up my Dog?

The combination of exercise alongside high protein and low fat/carbohydrate meals will bulk up your dog. The increased levels of protein will aid towards muscle gain, repair, and a much smaller quantity is stored. Carbohydrates and fat are stored in excess leading to weight gain as opposed to muscle bulking. Therefore, smaller amounts of these in dog food will aid muscle gain. Finally, the use of exercise will lead to weight loss and eventual weight gain.

What’s the Best Dog Food for Pitbulls to Gain Weight?

A high-protein food is great for Pitbulls, one we recommend is Bully Max‘s muscle-building chews for dogs. It has a very high protein content to allow for muscle gain and to prevent excess storage leading to weight gain. It also provides your pitty with the maximum amount of energy for food consumed.

What can I feed my puppy to gain muscle?

For puppies, you can feed them rice, lamb, chicken, fish, beef, and egg. Whe picking your puppy’s food make sure that there is a high protein source, just make sure that you’ll cut them in smaller portions so your puppies can chew them properly. Once they get older and can chew hard food, their diets should consist of raw meats, bones, vegetables, and supplements.

Whether you were interested in the breakdown of good dog food to gain muscle or wanted a recommendation of the best muscle gain dog food, this article should have provided you with all the answers you need. If you are further curious as to how to help your pup with muscle gain, check out our articles on muscle supplements.

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