Would you like to know everything about high fiber dog foods? From their benefits to the best options on the market, our guide will take you by the hand and teach you everything about this special type of food.
We have examined 100s of dog foods with high fiber contents available online to elaborate the definitive top five of 2020. Furthermore, we are going to show you how we selected these dog food brands by sharing with you our exclusive standards.
What Are High fiber Dog Foods
Normally, conventional dog food contains very little fiber, around 2-5% of the total composition. On the other hand, food deemed as high fiber surpasses the 5% mark, which will allow your dog to enjoy the health benefits of fiber. However, it is not about buying dog food with more than 5% of fiber, because of the quality of the fiber matters as much. Therefore, we have ensured that the options from our top five obtain their fiber content from healthy sources such as carrots, pumpkin, apples, and kelp.
Furthermore, for a high fiber food to deliver all of its benefits, it needs to come together with a clean and rich source of protein. Therefore, we have ensured to select brands that use whole proteins such as beef, lamb, salmon, bison, venison, and chicken as the first ingredients. As we are going to see, increasing fiber can yield interesting results, especially for specific ailments such as diabetes mellitus, and obesity.
Benefits of High Fiber Dog Foods
Ease of Digestion
Fiber will make digestion easier and more efficient for your dog, and we have evidence to back up our claim. In this study, they noticed that the addition of fiber decreased the intestinal transit time from 37.4 hours to 28.7 hours, which is approximately 23% less time. In the study, they used food that contained up to 9% of fiber, to compare it against a group that consumed normal levels of fiber 3% and 6%(moderate), showing that a higher intake of fiber resulted in improved digestion.
Therefore, if your dog constantly has to face issues like constipation, then feeding it with a high fiber dog food will help your dog. We have ensured that all of our foods include the best sources of fiber such as sweet potatoes, wholesome whole grains, and carrots.
Maintaining Blood Sugar
Fiber is not only good for easing up the digestion in your dog, but it is also efficient at maintaining the blood sugar levels under control. Once again, to back up our claim, we have a study that put to test this premise, and it showed excellent results. In the study, they fed 10 dogs a high fiber diet, and the results were excellent:
- Glycemic control was improved
- Reduced plasma concentrations of cholesterol, glycated hemoglobin, fructosamine, and free glycerol
- Dogs even lost weight (in addition to increased physical activity)
In consequence, the study concluded that a high fiber diet could improve the quality of life of dogs that suffer from diabetes mellitus. Nonetheless, it is beneficial for all dogs regardless of their health condition, as it can also act as a measure of prevention. We know that a sample of 10 dogs is small for a study, but it still displays evidence towards the claims that many owners report after feeding their dogs a healthy high fiber diet. Nonetheless, you also need to supplement it with exercise to get the best results, because diabetes mellitus is a multi-faceted problem.
Like humans, dogs also face obesity, and the rate of obese dogs has grown a lot in recent years. Therefore, weight management has become a priority, and thanks to high fiber dog foods, you can help your dog to lose weight and maintain its weight under control. Claims are good to hear, but it is necessary to back them up. Fortunately, we have a study that tested the effects of a high fiber, high-protein diet on obese dogs, and these were the results:
- Dogs on the high-protein, high fiber diet (HPHF) lost more fat than dogs that followed a high-protein, medium-fiber diet
- The high-protein, high fiber diet brought better results despite having an equivalent caloric density
- Dogs on the HPHF lost weight at a faster rate than dogs that followed the alternative diet (31.18% vs. 20%)
Fortunately, the dog foods we recommend also include an excellent dose of protein, which your dog needs to thrive, and in this case, to lose weight. If you are especially interested in this, then you should check the Buffalo Blue recommendation, which includes a high content of protein.
Choosing The Right High Fiber Dog Foods
As we told you in the section where we answered what high fiber dog food is, it is not about a high content of fiber, because the source is essential as well. However, you need to follow other standards as well, to ensure that your dog is getting the best food possible.
Choose Foods with Whole Protein as The Primary Ingredient
Your dog mainly obtains nutrition from animal protein, and therefore, it needs to be the principal component to analyze, and we recommend you to pick a food that makes whole protein the principal ingredient. As we explained in the section about weight management and high fiber diets, when combined with a high dose of protein, the results of weight loss amplify and allow your dog to lose more fat mass at a faster rate, approximately 31% quicker.
Furthermore, now that you know that whole protein must be the case, you also need to ensure that your dog is not allergic to it. Preferably, we recommend food that combines different types of meat, because feeding your dog solely chicken can be problematic, as its ratio of Omega-6 to Omega-3 is too high.
Of course, ensure that they actually include meat, and that is why it is crucial to read the ingredients list, to make sure that they are including authentic animal protein.
Choose Foods with Omega Fatty Acids and Antioxidants
To ensure that your dog is healthy, you must ensure that there is an equilibrium between omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids, and in addition, antioxidants will boost the health and vitality of your pet.
As we explained, chicken’s benefits can be argued when it comes to the omega-6 to omega-3 fatty acids ratio. Therefore, you should look for a food that balances it in case it uses chicken as its main protein, and it can be by adding other types of meats such as salmon, beef, or lamb. When it comes to antioxidants, you should opt for foods that include the following:
- Vitamin E, C and A
- Alpha-lipoic acid
Even though it is hard to find a food that includes them all, it should include at least 2-3 options from the list.
Choose Foods That Have Probiotics
You should also opt for foods that include probiotics because they will help the healthy bacteria in the gut of your dog to thrive, which will keep your dog healthy.
Ensure that the food contains good sources of soluble fiber, insoluble fiber, and resistant starch, as they have proven to help healthy bacteria to stay under healthy levels.
Avoid Foods with Artificial Coloring
Artificial coloring is not only harmful for humans, because it also damages dogs. Owners report that they can cause allergic reactions, gastrointestinal issues, and even increase the chances of developing cancer.
In fact, many dog owners rate it as one of the top three ingredients to avoid in dog food, according to the Nielsen Global Survey. Therefore, you have even more reasons to avoid these ingredients, because the consensus agrees with it too.
Furthermore, coloring is merely used for improving the appearance of food, or on the other hand, to differentiate different flavors. In consequence, it is inherently unnecessary from a practical point of view. Yet, another reason to discard it, and to prefer foods that keep their composition as natural as possible.
Avoid Foods with No Specified By-Product
Transparency goes a long way, especially when we talk about the nutrition of our dogs, and therefore, you should avoid dog foods that do not specify by-products because you deserve to know the quality of macronutrients, especially protein, that your dog is receiving. Animal by-products are the parts of the animal that have been left over, after taking the parts for human consumption. They can include the following:
- Organs such as liver, brain, lungs, kidneys, stomachs, and intestines
- Undeveloped eggs
The problem here is that they can even use dead-on-arrival animals to obtain the by-products, which are unfit for human consumption but allowed for making dog food.
Many dog food companies use the animal by-products to make canned dog food in the best scenario, but they can also use the by-products in a process known as rendering, which does the following:
- They make an over-cooked stew
- All the water is evaporated
- They skim away the fat
- After that, they proceed to bake the residues
As a result, they obtain a highly concentrated protein powder that they can use in pet food. It is not bad, as long as they specify all their sources, but if they do not, then you should stay away because they might be using the following sources:
- Diseased livestock
- Dead-on-arrival livestock
- Euthanized pets
- Dead zoo animals
- Animals killed on the road
- Dead-on-arrival poultry
5 High Fiber Dog Foods
Now that you have understood how to choose a high-quality food of this kind, let us share with you the top 5 high fiber dog foods on the market, which have met all the standards we have explained. Get the best value for the best price.
1. Natural Balance Dry Dog Food
The high fiber dry dog food by Natural Balance features a grain-free formula that uses sweet potatoes as its main fiber source, along with several healthy whole protein options: fish, venison, bison, and duck. It is free of artificial coloring and flavoring, additives, and fillers that may provoke allergic reactions.
The most important benefit of this dry food is that its fiber comes from a high-quality source, and in addition, it includes all the vitamins and antioxidants that your dog needs to stay healthy. They solely use simple and healthy ingredients that are adequate for the nutrition of dogs.
According to reviews, dogs that suffered from loose stools successfully bulked on their pop. Furthermore, dogs that suffered from allergies, finally overcome them after switching to this food. However, the owners have complained about the recent price increase.
2. Rachael Ray Nutrish Natural Premium Dry Dog Food
The high fiber food by Rachael Ray Nutrish features a formula that uses farm-raised chicken as its main protein, and for fiber, it uses wholesome whole grains to support optimal digestion. It is free from animal by-products, fillers, and artificial coloring and flavoring.
The most important benefits are that, if your dog loves chicken, then it will love this option. Furthermore, it is one of the few chicken-based dog foods on the market that exclude completely the use of chicken by-products.
According to reviews, the dogs that experienced problems with loose stools fixed them after a few days. Furthermore, owners also report that problems with gas were gone. The dogs love the flavor, especially those that dig on chicken. However, according to the owners, it contains a problematic ingredient, dicalcium phosphate, which could cause kidney stones in some dogs.
3. Rachael Ray Nutrish Super Premium Dry Dog Food
Our previous option was chicken-based, but if chicken causes health problems in your dog, or if your pet simply does like it, then you Rachael Ray Nutrish brings you their beef-based alternative.
Its formula features farm-raised beef as its main protein source, along with wholesome whole grains as their fiber source. Like all of its formulas, it is free of artificial flavoring and coloring, fillers, and poultry by-products. Its main benefit is the content of real beef which will bring your dog a healthy dose of protein that is balanced in Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids.
According to reviews, the dogs nail on the flavor, and it has definitively helped them to bulk on their stools. Furthermore, the owners have also noticed that the coat of their pets has improved. However, the food is notoriously grassy.
4. Blue Buffalo Wilderness Natural Adult Dry Dog Food
The high fiber, high-protein dog food by Blue Buffalo features high-quality protein sources: salmon, chicken, and duck. For fiber, it uses sweet potatoes and carrots, whereas it also includes cranberries and blueberries to add antioxidants in the mix.
The most important benefit of this food is that it uses real salmon, chicken, or duck as the main protein source. Furthermore, it is completely free of grains, additives, and by-product meals.
According to reviews, the flavor of the food is excellent. Furthermore, they also comment that, since switching to this food, the stool problems of their dogs stopped. In addition, it also helped some owners to solve the allergic reactions of their pets. We could find no complaints!
5. Nutro Wholesome Essentials Adult Healthy Weight Dry Dog Food
The high fiber food by Nutro gives you two excellent protein options: farm-raised chicken and lamb. Their rich fiber content comes thanks to sweet potatoes, whole grains, lentils, and fruits. Furthermore, it is rich in antioxidants and vitamins, and its formula is free of GMO ingredients and artificial coloring and flavoring.
The main benefit of this food is the great content of fiber from high-quality sources, as well as real chicken and lamb as the first ingredients. Furthermore, it includes a complete addition of vitamins and antioxidants to promote the optimal health of your pet.
According to reviews, the food has an excellent flavor and it is awesome for weight management, thanks to being low in calories, high in fiber, and high in protein. However, despite being free from GMO ingredients, it might contain traces of such ingredients due to manufacturing.
High Fiber Dog Foods – FAQs
Many owners have never purchased high fiber dog food before, and therefore, they tend to have many questions, and according to our research, these are the most common.
How can I Add More Fiber to my Dog Diet?
The best way to add more fiber to your dog diet is to include foods such as cooked brown rice, apples, cooked oats, mashed pumpkin, bran flakes, cooked carrots, and kelp. They will increase the fiber consumption of your dog, and therefore, allow your pet to enjoy the benefits such as easier digestion and weight loss.
However, if your dog has not been used to eating fiber regularly, then you should include the fiber-rich foods progressively. Start low and then increase them as the days pass by, and do not be worried if your dog poops more frequently than before, as it is a common side effect, but it will normalize as your dog gets used to the high-content of fiber in its diet.
What can I Feed my Dog for Fiber?
The best sources of fiber to feed your dog are oats, carrots, broccoli, kelp, brown rice, kale, wheat germ, apples, and pumpkin. They bring your dog the perfect balance between soluble and insoluble fiber, which will allow your pet to enjoy the benefits of high fiber food, and in addition, you will keep its healthy gut bacteria in optimal conditions.
You should test what fiber-rich foods your dog likes the most, so you can make it easy for your pet to adapt to its new diet.
How can I Bulk up my Dog's Poop?
The best way to bulk up the poop of your dog is to include foods like pumpkin and sweet potatoes, to bring your dog a healthy dose of fiber and resistant starch, which will help you to solve the problem of loose stools.
In addition, you should combine a high fiber diet – which uses sources like pumpkin – with a high-protein approach, because by combining both types of diets, you will help the stools to solidify. Therefore, supplement high fiber foods with healthy protein sources such as beef, lamb, salmon, and even chicken, when balanced with other types of protein, to balance the Omega-6 and Omega-3 fatty acids.
What is the Best High Fiber Dog Food?
The best high fiber dog food is the one that your dog likes the most and that has excellent effects on its health, and therefore, it varies. However, thanks to their content of fiber and excellent nutritional profile, these are the best options:
- Brown rice
- Sweet potatoes
- Barn flakes
Dogs have different tastes, and therefore, you need to feed it small bits of each food, to see which ones it prefers. Of course, you also need to monitor how they affect your pet, because some foods like brown rice may cause loose stools, whereas pumpkin may be a better option in this case.
Always evaluate different types of high fiber dog food to see which is most appropriate for your pup before purchase. From sensitivities to preferences, consider these elements first. Then, a high fiber dog food can truly make a beneficial difference for your dog.