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11 Best Dog Foods for Weight Loss – 2024 Reviews & Top Picks

Elizabeth Gray

By Elizabeth Gray

Havanese dog eating With more than 50% of dogs in the United States reportedly overweight, obesity is the most common preventable disease in dogs. The right diet plays an important role in keeping your dog fit, but it can also assist them in shedding excess pounds if necessary. If your pup tipped the scales a little too far at their last check-up, it might be time to switch to a weight loss diet.

But which one should you choose? To help you sort through the available choices, we’ve gathered reviews of what we think are the 11 best dog foods for weight loss. Take a look at our picks and use the buyer’s guide to help you find the proper diet for your chunky dog.

Disclaimer: The foods reviewed here were chosen because they have certain characteristics that might help with some of the causes or consequences of this medical condition. However, they are not a medical treatment or a substitute for medical treatment. Keep in mind that each medical case is different and what works for some pets may not work for others. Your veterinarian is the right person to advise you on the best diet for your pet’s individual case.

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A Quick Comparison of Our Favorites in 2024

Rating Image Product Details
Best Overall
Winner
The Farmer’s Dog Chicken Recipe Fresh Diet The Farmer’s Dog Chicken Recipe Fresh Diet
  • Individually formulated to your dog’s needs
  • Made with simple, fresh ingredients
  • Shipped directly to your home
  • Budget Buy
    Second place
    Purina ProPlan Adult Weight Management Purina ProPlan Adult Weight Management
  • High in protein, with reduced fat content
  • Contains probiotics and prebiotic fiber
  • Most dogs like the taste
  • Third place
    Purina One Adult High Protein Healthy Weight Formula Purina One Adult High Protein Healthy Weight Formula
  • High in protein, with reduced fat content
  • Also contains antioxidants, fatty acids, calcium, and glucosamine
  • Most dogs seem to enjoy the taste
  • Hill’s Science Diet Adult Perfect Weight Hill’s Science Diet Adult Perfect Weight
  • Research-backed nutrition
  • Protein helps maintain muscle during weight loss
  • Available in multiple bag sizes
  • Royal Canin Veterinary Diet Adult Satiety Support Royal Canin Veterinary Diet Adult Satiety Support
  • Formulated specifically for safe weight loss
  • Low in fat with protein to maintain muscle
  • Contains fiber to help your dog feel full
  • The 11 Best Dog Foods for Weight Loss

    1. The Farmer’s Dog Chicken Recipe Fresh Diet – Best Overall

    white dog patiently waiting for The Farmer's Dog chicken recipe fresh food in bowl
    Image credit: Kate | Hepper

    Main ingredients: Chicken, chicken liver, broccoli, cauliflower
    Protein content: 11%
    Fat content: 5%
    Calories: 295 kcal per ½ pound

    If you’re looking for a fresh dog food for weight loss, consider The Farmer’s Dog Chicken Recipe Fresh Diet. Produced in small batches using human-grade ingredients, The Farmer’s Dog diets are individually formulated to your dog’s specific health requirements. With simple, recognizable ingredients like chicken and vegetables, the Farmer’s Dog is a good choice for those who’d love to cook for their dogs but worry about whether food will be nutritionally balanced. Fill out the quick and easy online form to let the company know your pup needs to lose a little weight, and you’re ready to go. Your dog’s food will be shipped to your door on a schedule of your choosing. Unfortunately, The Farmer’s Dog doesn’t ship to Alaska, Hawaii, or international destinations. It is also one of the higher-priced options on our list.

    Pros
    • Individually formulated to your dog’s needs
    • Made with simple, fresh ingredients
    • Shipped directly to your home
    Cons
    • No shipment to Alaska, Hawaii, or international locations
    • Higher price point than other diets on our list

    2. Purina ProPlan Adult Weight Management Chicken and Rice – Budget Buy

    Purina Pro Plan Adult Weight Management Shredded Blend Chicken & Rice Formula Dry Dog Food

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    Main ingredients: Chicken, rice, whole grain corn
    Protein content: 27%
    Fat content: 9%
    Calories: 330 kcal/cup

    Our second choice is Purina ProPlan Adult Weight Management Chicken and Rice Dry Food. It is high in protein but contains 15% less fat than the regular ProPlan Chicken and Rice Diet. In combination, this blend helps your dog keep their muscle mass intact even as they shed excess fat. ProPlan Weight Management also contains probiotics and prebiotic fiber to maintain gut health and help your pup feel full.

    Users report that most dogs seem to enjoy the taste of this food. Some report that the diet can be crumbly and powdery. Because it contains chicken, this may not be the best option for dogs with food sensitivities.

    Pros
    • High in protein, with reduced fat content
    • Contains probiotics and prebiotic fiber
    • Most dogs like the taste
    Cons
    • Texture can be crumbly
    • Not a good choice for dogs with food sensitivities

    3. Purina One Adult High Protein Healthy Weight Formula

    Purina ONE +Plus Adult High-Protein Healthy Weight Formula Dry Dog Food

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    Main ingredients: Turkey, rice flour, soybean meal
    Protein content: 27%
    Fat content: 8%
    Calories: 320 kcal/cup

    We also liked Purina One Adult High Protein Healthy Weight Formula. It offers similar nutrition as our top pick at a lower cost. Turkey supplies the protein for this formula, but it also contains chicken. Purine One contains plenty of added nutrients, including antioxidants, calcium, fatty acids, and glucosamine. Extra weight can put a strain on your dog’s joints, so the added support from glucosamine can be beneficial. It does contain by-products, which some dog owners prefer to avoid feeding. Purina One High Protein Healthy Weight receives high ratings from users, most of whom report that their dogs will eat it happily.

    Pros
    • Similar nutrition as our top pick at a lower cost
    • Also contains antioxidants, fatty acids, calcium, and glucosamine
    • Most dogs seem to enjoy the taste
    Cons
    • Not a good option for dogs with food sensitivities
    • Contains by-products

    4. Hill’s Science Diet Adult Perfect Weight Chicken Recipe

    Hill's Science Diet Adult Perfect Weight Chicken Recipe Dry Dog Food

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    Main ingredients: Chicken, cracked pearled barley, brown rice
    Protein content: 24%
    Fat content: 9%
    Calories: 299 kcal/cup

    Developed by an experienced company and frequently recommended by veterinarians, Hill’s Science Diet Adult Perfect Weight Chicken Recipe offers research-backed nutrition to help your dog lose weight. It’s slightly lower in protein than our top pick, and it also helps your dog maintain muscle while they burn fat. Hill’s is made in the USA and is complete and balanced. It does contain pea fiber, made from a legume. Legumes in pet food remain under investigation for their potential role in causing heart conditions. Perfect Weight is available in multiple bag sizes, including a small, 4-pound bag. Overall, users give it a high rating. Some customers mention that it seems to have undergone a recent formula change that did not agree with their pets.

    Pros
    • Research-backed nutrition
    • Protein helps maintain muscle during weight loss
    • Available in multiple bag sizes
    Cons
    • Contains legumes
    • Recent formula changes not tolerated by some dogs

    5. Royal Canin Veterinary Diet Adult Satiety Support Weight Management Diet

    Royal Canin Veterinary Diet Adult Satiety Support Weight Management Dry Dog Food

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    Main ingredients: Powdered cellulose, chicken by-product meal, corn
    Protein content: 28%
    Fat content: 5%
    Calories: 214 kcal/cup

    Available by prescription only, Royal Canin Veterinary Diet Adult Satiety Support Weight Management Diet is specially formulated for safe weight loss. It’s lower in fat than the brands we’ve discussed so far and contains a blend of fiber to keep your dog feeling full between meals. You’ll also find glucosamine and chondroitin to support your dog’s joints as they carry the extra weight.

    Royal Canin is for those more interested in a diet backed by research and food trials rather than one that uses ingredients they can easily identify. As a prescription diet, this is not the most cost-effective choice on our list. Users don’t love the diet’s cost but feel that it works as intended to help dogs feel full while losing weight. Some reported that their dogs don’t like the kibble size and shape.

     

    Pros
    • Formulated specifically for safe weight loss
    • Low in fat with protein to maintain muscle
    • Contains fiber to help your dog feel full
    • Glucosamine and chondroitin for joint support
    Cons
    • Requires a prescription
    • Expensive
    • Some dogs don’t like the kibble size and shape

    6. Eukanuba Fit Body Weight Control Small Breed Dog Food

    Eukanuba Fit Body Weight Control Small Breed Dry Dog Food

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    Main ingredients: Chicken, chicken by-product meal, wheat
    Protein content: 29%
    Fat content: 10%
    Calories: 320 kcal/cup

    If your small dog looks a little larger than normal, try Eukanuba Fit Body Weight Control Small Breed Dog Food. With 40% less fat than the regular Small Breed Dog Food, it also contains carnitine and supplements to support joint and brain health, including increased levels of glucosamine compared to the regular formula. The carb content has also been altered to simplify weight loss. With chicken and wheat among the ingredients, Eukanuba is not a good choice for small dogs with food sensitivities. Small dogs love the kibble size of this diet, and most are satisfied with the flavor.

    Pros
    • Lower in fat with increased glucosamine compared to the regular formula
    • Contains supplements to maintain muscle mass and support brain health
    • Good kibble size for small dogs
    Cons
    • Not a good choice for dogs with food sensitivities

    7. Wellness Simple Limited Ingredient Healthy Weight Salmon and Peas Formula

    Wellness Simple Limited Ingredient Diet Grain-Free Healthy Weight Salmon & Peas Formula Dry Dog Food

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    Main ingredients: Salmon, salmon meal, potatoes, peas
    Protein content: 26%
    Fat content: 8%
    Calories: 394 kcal/cup

    For dogs with food sensitivities that also need to lose weight, consider Wellness Simple Limited Ingredient Healthy Weight Salmon and Peas Formula. It’s made in the USA and free from common allergens like chicken and wheat. It contains multiple nutrients, including fatty acids, antioxidants, glucosamine, and probiotics.

    Grain-free diets aren’t necessary for all dogs, so check with your vet before switching to this food. We mentioned the concerns with legumes earlier, and Wellness also contains peas. Some users report that their dogs didn’t care for the strong smell of this kibble.

    Pros
    • Free of common allergy triggers
    • Limited ingredients
    • Contains antioxidants, fatty acids, glucosamine, and probiotics
    Cons
    • Contains legumes
    • Strong-smelling kibble

    8. Nutro Natural Choice Healthy Weight Adult Lamb and Rice

    Nutro Natural Choice Healthy Weight Adult Lamb & Brown Rice Recipe Dry Dog Food

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    Main ingredients: Deboned lamb, chicken meal, whole grain barley
    Protein content: 24%
    Fat content: 7%
    Calories: 240 kcal/cup

    As one of the lowest-fat options on our list, Nutro Natural Choice Healthy Weight Adult Lamb and Rice provides another primary protein option for your dog. Although lamb is the first ingredient, Nutro contains chicken products, so it is not an allergy-friendly option for most dogs.

    Added fiber keeps your dog full and keeps their digestive system moving normally. You’ll also find antioxidants and GMO-free ingredients. Despite the positive reviews, some pet parents report that their dogs dislike Nutro’s small kibble and taste. Others caution that the high fiber may cause your pup to poop more than usual.

    Pros
    • One of the lowest-fat options
    • High in fiber with added antioxidants
    • Non-GMO ingredients
    Cons
    • Small kibble
    • Expect extra poop

    9. Canidae Pure Goodness Healthy Weight Chicken and Pea Dry Food

    CANIDAE Grain-Free PURE Healthy Weight Limited Ingredient Chicken & Pea Recipe Dry Dog Food

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    Main ingredients: Chicken, chicken meal, turkey meal
    Protein content: 28%
    Fat content: 9%
    Calories: 409 kcal/cup

    As another option for those who prefer grain-free, limited-ingredient food, Canidae Pure Goodness Healthy Weight Chicken and Pea Dry Food is made in the USA. It’s free of artificial colors, flavors, or preservatives, but it contains added antioxidants, probiotics, and fatty acids. Again, grain-free diets aren’t necessary for all dogs, and in this case, Pure Goodness still contains chicken, a much more common allergy trigger. It also contains peas but in smaller quantities than the other grain-free choices on our list. Pure Goodness is only available in two bag sizes, with 22 pounds as the largest option. Some owners report that their dogs didn’t care for the small, hard kibble. Others found this food gave their dog digestive issues.

    Pros
    • No artificial colors, flavors, or preservatives
    • Limited ingredients
    • Contains probiotics, antioxidants, and fatty acids
    Cons
    • Largest bag is only 22 pounds
    • Small, hard kibble
    • Caused digestive issues in some dogs

    10. Blue Buffalo Homestyle Recipe Healthy Weight Chicken Dinner with Garden Vegetables and Rice Canned Food

    Blue Buffalo Homestyle Recipe Natural Adult Healthy Weight Wet Dog Food

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    Main ingredients: Chicken, chicken broth, chicken liver
    Protein content: 5%
    Fat content: 4%
    Calories: 354 kcal/can

    If you need a canned food option for weight loss, try Blue Buffalo Homestyle Recipe Healthy Weight Chicken Dinner with Garden Vegetables and Rice Canned Food. It’s made with recognizable ingredients and features plenty of protein from chicken products. The Homestyle Recipe is also made with whole grains, fruits, and vegetables but is free from artificial flavors and preservatives.

    It’s available in a case of 12, 12.5-ounce cans, which can get expensive if you’re feeding a large dog. In addition, it doesn’t contain the added supplements of other brands on our list. Some customers report that their dogs don’t like the flavor or texture of this diet and caution that you could end up with wasted cans if you purchase a whole case.

    Pros
    • No artificial flavors and preservatives
    • Features whole grains, vegetables, and fruit
    • High in protein
    Cons
    • May not be cost-effective for large dogs
    • No added supplements
    • Some dogs dislike the flavor and texture of the food

    11. Iams Proactive Health Adult Healthy Weight Dry Food

    Iams Proactive Health Healthy Adult Weight Control with Real Chicken Dry Dog Food

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    Main ingredients: Chicken, ground barley, ground whole grain corn
    Protein content: 20%
    Fat content: 9%
    Calories: 304 kcal/cup

    For a convenient, affordable weight loss diet for dogs, consider Iams Proactive Health Adult Healthy Weight Dry Food. With 17% less fat than the regular Iams MiniChunks, it features chicken and egg as protein sources. However, it has the lowest total protein of any brand on our list. Added fiber, prebiotics, and carnitine help your dog feel full while supporting their muscle mass. Some users reported that their dogs didn’t care for the taste of this food. Others found their dogs still seemed hungry after eating, complicating their weight loss journey.

    Pros
    • Convenient and affordable
    • Contains fiber, prebiotics, and carnitine
    • 17% less fat than regular Iams recipe
    Cons
    • Lowest protein of the foods on our list
    • May not help your dog feel full
    • Some dogs dislike the flavor

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    Buyer’s Guide: Choosing the Best Dog Food For Weight Loss

    Now that you have a general feel for the weight loss brands available for your dog, here are a few points to keep in mind before you go shopping.

    boston terrier eating dog food
    Image Credit: Jaja Fekiacova, Shutterstock

    How Big Is Your Dog?

    Big dogs eat more and are more expensive to feed, even if they’re trying to lose weight! If you’re on a budget, some of the options on our list will give you more bang for your buck. As a rule, dry food is more cost-effective than canned or fresh food. Higher prices don’t always equal healthier food, so don’t worry if you can’t afford the more expensive choices.

    Does Your Dog Have Food Sensitivities?

    As you saw from our list, chicken is a common protein choice for weight loss diets (and most dog food.) Unfortunately, it’s also one of the most common culprits in dog food allergies and sensitivities. If that describes your pup, you’ll find limited options for weight loss diets. Look for foods free of chicken and wheat, ideally with a novel or unusual protein, such as salmon. Your vet can help you identify suitable options.

    Schnauzer puppy dog eating tasty dry food from bowl
    Image Credit: Maximilian100, Shutterstock

    How Many Calories Does Your Dog Need?

    Even if you’re feeding a “weight loss” dog food, your pup will struggle to lose weight if they consume too many calories. Ask your vet to calculate how many calories your dog should eat daily to lose weight safely. Once you choose a weight loss diet, check the bag to determine how many calories per cup it contains. If you’re offering your dog any treats, subtract those calories from your dog’s daily total and calculate how many cups of food to feed based on the remainder.

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    Conclusion

    As the best overall weight loss diet, The Farmer’s Dog is a fresh food that’s formulated for weight loss. Our budget pick, Purina ProPlan Adult Weight Management is high in protein and low in fat to maintain muscle during weight loss. Hill’s Science Diet Adult Perfect Weight is a research-backed weight loss diet that most dogs enjoy. Royal Canin Satiety Support is a prescription brand designed specifically for safe weight loss. Hopefully, our buyer’s guide and reviews of these 11 weight loss diets will help you determine the best option for you and your dog.


    Featured Image Credit: Boryana Manzurova, Shutterstock

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