Top 10 Best Dog Food for EPI German Shepherd

Top 10 Best Dog Food for EPI German Shepherd

Is your German Shepherd struggling with stomach issues?

Exocrine pancreatic insufficiency (EPI)  is a complication that severely impacts the pancreas due to the improper production of digestive hormones. EPI can be a problematic condition for your canine to deal with, and it can be difficult for you as the dog owner to help them through it. Thankfully, some dog food formulas can support your German Shepherd afflicted with EPI.

But which option should you choose? This article aims to present several reviews to help you make a well-informed decision about which dog food will best suit your German Shepherd. So, let’s take a look!

The 10 Best Dog Foods for EPI German Shepherds

Pedigree Adult Dry Dog Food – Best Value

Pedigree Adult Complete Nutrition Grilled Steak & Vegetable Flavor Dry Dog Food
Main ingredients Ground whole grain corn, meat and bone meal, soybean meal, animal fat
Protein content 21.0% min
Fat content 10.0% min
Calories 309 kcal/cup

The Pedigree Adult Dry Dog Food, Steak & Vegetable is the best EPI German Shepherd dog food for the money. With a combination of antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals, this formula supports a healthy lifestyle for your pup. The omega-6 fatty acids boost the health of your dog’s skin and coat, and the whole grains help with the digestive process.

This recipe is made in the United States and does not include any artificial flavors, added sugars, or high fructose corn syrup. The kibble’s texture was explicitly designed for maintaining healthy teeth, so worrying about your dog’s oral hygiene will not be necessary.

Cons
  • First ingredient isn’t a protein source
Pros
  • Nourishes the skin and coat
  • Supports healthy digestion
  • Affordable

Hill’s Prescription Diet Gastrointestinal Biome Dry Food – Best Overall

Hill's Prescription Diet Gastrointestinal Biome Chicken Flavor Dry Dog Food

Main ingredients Chicken, cracked pearled barley, brewers rice, corn gluten meal, whole grain corn
Protein content 17.0% min
Fat content 9.0% min
Calories 330 kcal/cup

Our pick for the best overall dog food for EPI German Shepherds is Hill’s Prescription Diet Gastrointestinal Biome Chicken Flavor Dry Dog Food.

This dog food is a prescription formula. It is built for your dog’s digestive care since it boosts the bacteria in the gastrointestinal tract to help break down food. Postbiotics allow the food to pass easily through your dog’s digestive system and significantly limit complications. Likewise, the formula promotes healthy stool for dogs that struggle with digestive upset.

This recipe supports dogs of all sizes with their digestion issues. However, Hill’s requires authorization from a vet, so plan accordingly if you choose this option.

Cons
  • Low protein content
  • Requires vet authorization
Pros
  • Helps natural digestive process
  • Promotes regular stools
  • Supports gastrointestinal tract, breaks down food
  • Created by nutritionists and vets

Royal Canin German Shepherd Dry Puppy Food – Best for Puppies

Royal Canin Breed Health Nutrition German Shepherd Puppy Dry Dog Food
Main ingredients Chicken by-product meal, wheat gluten, corn, oat groats, brewers rice
Protein content 28.0% min
Fat content 14.0% min
Calories 331 kcal/cup

For puppies, the optimal choice is Royal Canin Breed Health Nutrition German Shepherd Puppy Dry Dog Food.

From 8 weeks to 15 months, your puppy can reap the benefit of this formula. Everything about this recipe is developed with the German Shepherd puppy in mind, right down to the kibble’s shape. The kibble’s shape is designed for the muzzle of a German Shepherd puppy to encourage proper chewing—an essential start to healthy digestion!

The proteins and fibers are chosen for how highly digestible they are, while the rest of the ingredients serve essential purposes for other areas of your dog’s health. For instance, the formula boosts the immune system and sustains the bones and joints with a combination of antioxidants and natural compounds.

Cons
  • Protein source is chicken by-product
Pros
  • Highly digestible
  • Kibble is shaped specifically for German Shepherd puppies
  • Supports immune system, bones, and joints

Royal Canin Veterinary Gastrointestinal Dry Food – Premium Choice

Royal Canin Veterinary Diet Adult Gastrointestinal Low Fat Dry Dog Food
Main ingredients Brewers rice, chicken by-product meal, wheat, barley
Protein content 20.0% min
Fat content 5.5% min
Calories 248 kcal/cup

The Royal Canin Veterinary Diet Adult Gastrointestinal Low Fat Dry Dog Food is a premium choice for your pup. It is designed to support both short-term and long-term digestive complications by boosting digestive health and the conditions of your dog’s stool with excellent proteins and probiotics. Royal Canin employs various omega-3 fatty acids and fibers to aid with gastrointestinal maintenance, and it uses prebiotics to sustain the beneficial bacteria that help break foods down. This is a perfect option for dogs that struggle to digest fat.

Cons
  • Requires vet authorization
  • Protein source is chicken by-product
Pros
  • Highly digestible
  • Low-fat content for dogs with difficulties tolerating fat
  • Prebiotics maintain the balance of beneficial bacteria in the gut

Purina Pro Plan Sensitive Skin & Stomach Dry Food

Purina Pro Plan Sensitive Skin & Stomach
Main ingredients Salmon, rice, barley, canola meal, fish meal, oat meal
Protein content 29.0% min
Fat content 14.0% min
Calories 401 kcal/cup

Purina Pro Plan Sensitive Skin & Stomach 7+ Salmon & Rice Formula Dry Dog Food is a quality choice for dogs suffering from EPI, although it is specific to senior dogs.

It is designed for dogs with sensitive stomachs and uses oatmeal and rice to create an easily digestible recipe. Including prebiotic fibers and antioxidants also promotes digestive health, and the meal features omega-rich oils for sensitive skin, glucosamine for joints, and high protein content to support the heart.

Cons
  • Pea protein
  • Specific to seniors
Pros
  • High protein
  • Ideal for dogs with stomach issues
  • Supports healthy joints, immune system, and coat
  • Limited ingredient diet

Hill’s Science Diet Large Breed Dry Dog Food – Vet’s Choice

Hill's Science Diet Adult Large Breed Chicken & Barley Recipe Dry Dog Food
Main ingredients Chicken, cracked pearled barley, whole grain wheat, whole grain corn
Protein content 20.0% min
Fat content 11.5% min
Calories 363 kcal/cup

For our vet’s choice, we chose Hill’s Science Diet Adult Large Breed Chicken & Barley Recipe Dry Dog Food.

This recipe does much more than just support digestion; it bolsters the cartilage, joints, immune system, skin, and coat. It also promotes your dog’s overall health, making it an excellent choice even without the boost to the digestive system.

For your dog’s digestion, Science Diet is highly digestible to ensure that your dog feels good after every meal. With chicken as the first ingredient, this flavorful meal will have your dog eager to dig in!

Cons
  • Protein content could be higher
Pros
  • Chicken is the first ingredient
  • Supports healthy joints, immune system, and coat
  • Aids digestion

Wellness CORE Digestive Health Dry Dog Food

Wellness CORE Digestive Health Dry Dog Food
Main ingredients Deboned chicken, turkey meal, chicken meal, brown rice
Protein content 30.0% min
Fat content 12.0% min
Calories 395 kcal/cup

For our final option, we have Wellness CORE Digestive Health Wholesome Grains Chicken & Brown Rice Recipe. This recipe is packed with protein, making it an excellent choice for a larger dog breed.

This formula is highly digestible for dogs with EPI and contains probiotics and prebiotic fibers. This combination is great for bolstering the health of any dog’s tummy.

With omega fatty acids, superfoods, and crucial vitamins, Wellness CORE supports your dog’s immune system, energy levels, and coat and skin health.

Cons
  • Expensive
Pros
  • High protein
  • Multiple animal sources
  • Inclusion of superfoods

SquarePet Squarely Natural Dry Dog Food

SquarePet Squarely Natural Lamb Meal & Brown Rice Formula Dry Dog Food
Main ingredients Lamb meal, brown rice, white rice, lamb
Protein content 22.0% min
Fat content 12.0% min
Calories 383 kcal/cup

SquarePet Squarely Natural Lamb Meal & Brown Rice Formula Dry Dog Food was made in the United States and developed to be a limited diet recipe.

As a limited diet formula, the pet food maker wanted to use as few ingredients as possible while supplying all the nutrition your pup needs. SquarePet is designed for dogs that struggle with digestive issues. It also includes benefits for the immune system, skin, and coat by providing omega fatty acids and vitamins.

It includes no chemical preservatives or fillers and is a healthy option to cater to your German Shepherd’s EPI.

Cons
  • Lamb is not the primary ingredient
Pros
  • Caters to sensitive digestion
  • Promotes healthy immune system, skin, and coat
  • Energy-packed
  • Limited ingredient diet

Blue Buffalo Natural Veterinary Diet GI Dry Food

Blue Buffalo Natural Veterinary Diet GI Gastrointestinal Support Dry Dog Food
Main ingredients Deboned chicken, chicken meal, oatmeal, brown rice, peas
Protein content 24.0% min
Fat content 12.0% min
Calories 344 kcal/cup

Our next option is the Blue Buffalo Natural Veterinary Diet GI Gastrointestinal Support Dry Dog Food. This recipe is packed full of proteins, fats, and carbohydrates that are easy to digest and absorb proper nutrients from. The prebiotic fibers help foster the growth of good bacteria in the digestive system, improving your dog’s digestive health.

Likewise, this formula promotes the immune system with antioxidants and vitamins. However, the recipe also includes peas, which may have a direct link to serious heart conditions in dogs. Also, be aware that Natural Veterinary Diet requires a vet’s authorization before you can purchase it.

Cons
  • Contains peas
  • Requires vet authorization
Pros
  • Gastrointestinal support
  • Promotes a healthy immune system
  • Made with quality ingredients

Iams Adult Large Breed Dry Dog Food

IAMS Adult Large Breed Adult Dry Dog Food
Main ingredients Chicken, ground whole grain barley, ground whole grain corn, ground whole grain sorghum, chicken by-product meal
Protein content 22.5% min
Fat content 12.0% min
Calories 351 kcal/cup

Iams Adult Large Breed Real Chicken High Protein Dry Dog Food is made with big dogs in mind, like your German Shepherd.

It has chicken as the first ingredient to guarantee that your big dog gets the fuel they need to live a happy, healthy life. With the combination of prebiotics and fibers, this blend supports your dog’s digestive health. It also sustains the health of the joints, muscles, bones, and teeth with the help of omega fatty acids, minerals, and proteins.

Iams is a bit easier on the wallet than some of the other brands on this list.

Cons
  • Lack of diverse ingredients
Pros
  • Affordable
  • Chicken is the first ingredient

Dr. Gary’s Best Breed Holistic German Dry Dog Food

Dr. Gary's Best Breed Holistic German
Main ingredients Chicken meal, oatmeal, brown rice, dried beet pulp, chicken fat
Protein content 25.0% min
Fat content 12.0% min
Calories 456 kcal/cup

Dr. Gary’s Best Breed Holistic German Dry Dog Food is made not only with large dogs in mind but specifically German Shepherds!

The protein is primarily sourced from chicken and menhaden fish and provides your pup with quality nutrition. With sea mussels to promote joint health, vitamins to boost the immune system, and omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids to maintain a healthy coat, this recipe is overall beneficial to the well-being of your dog.

As for gastrointestinal benefits, the recipe has plenty. With the inclusion of quality fibers, the formula supports proper digestion. Dr. Gary’s is balanced with appropriate protein, fat, and fiber levels to help sustain digestive health.

Cons
  • Somewhat expensive
  • Chicken is not the first ingredient
Pros
  • Nutrition-packed
  • Highly digestible
  • High protein

Nutro Ultra Large Breed Adult Dry Dog Food

Nutro Ultra Large Breed Adult Dry Dog Food
Main ingredients Chicken, chicken meal, whole brown rice, brewers rice, rice bran
Protein content 23.0% min
Fat content 12.0% min
Calories 346 kcal/cup

Nutro Ultra Large Breed includes three protein sources: chicken, salmon, and lamb. Not to mention, 15 different superfoods bolster the recipe, like chia, kale, and blueberries. That means the ,meal is packed with nutritious ingredients that will boost your dog’s health!

Nutro uses high-quality ingredients to develop its formula blends, specifically for larger dogs. As an added benefit, there are no artificial preservatives, flavors or colors, or chicken by-products.

Cons
  • No probiotics
Pros
  • Features chicken, lamb, and salmon for protein
  • Packed with superfoods
  • Supports healthy digestion

Holistic Select Large & Giant Breed Dry Dog Food

Holistic Select Large & Giant Breed Adult Health Chicken Meal & Oatmeal Recipe Dry Dog Food
Main ingredients Chicken meal, rice, oatmeal, oats, chicken fat
Protein content 24.0% min
Fat content 14.0% min
Calories 453 kcal/cup

The Holistic Select Large & Giant Breed Adult Health Recipe is another great choice for dogs with digestive difficulties. The recipe has several benefits for your dog’s digestive health. It includes ingredients that are highly digestible and helps maintain good bacteria in the gut. Also, the recipe is designed to taste good

Other health benefits of the recipe include antioxidants, glucosamine, probiotics, taurine, and fatty acids.

Cons
  • Expensive
Pros
  • Promotes a healthy heart
  • Maintains the health of the skin and coat
  • Supports digestion

Buyer’s Guide: How to Pick the Best Dog Food for EPI German Shepherds

After reading  the reviews, picking an option for your dog may still feel overwhelming. So, where do you start?

What Should a Dog With EPI Eat?

  • As with most pet recommendations, the best thing you can do is speak to your vet. They will have personalized insight into your dog’s particular needs and will be best able to help you form a dietary plan for your pup.
  • However, there are some general guidelines that may help you decide what you can and cannot feed your German Shepherd. Highly digestible food is generally a huge help for the dogs, and anything that is low in fat and fiber can prove useful, too.
  • Of course, every dog is different. That is why it is important to speak with your vet to learn how to best provide for your pet.

Does my Dog Need Enzyme Supplements?

  • Yes. Digestive enzymes are necessary for your dog’s feeding routine since the body isn’t producing enough enzymes on its own. The supplements must be added in with each meal. They are available in tablets and powders, but the powders are known to be most effective.
  • Take a look at this enzyme product to see if it’s suitable for your canine.

How To Feed My Dog Enzyme Supplements

  • Pay attention to the instructions on the bottle and the instructions offered by your vet. Beyond that, it is helpful to mix the powder into the meal as much as possible. This is important since your dog may shy away from eating what they believe is a strange powder, or their mouth could be irritated by the supplement if it is too concentrated in one spot.
  • Over time, as the symptoms begin to lessen, it is advised that you gradually decrease the number of supplements you are mixing into each meal. Although your dog will not be able to go entirely off the enzymes, the idea is to wean your dog down to a smaller portion.

Final Thoughts

The reviews of the recipes prove that you have excellent options for your German Shepherd, but a few stand out. The Hill’s Prescription Diet is best overall due to the careful development and the support for digestive well-being. For the best value, the Pedigree Adult is hard to beat. The Royal Canin Veterinary Diet Adult Gastrointestinal caters to dogs struggling with high-fat diets. For puppies, the Royal Canin Breed Health Nutrition German Shepherd Puppy is a great selection, offering specialized kibble for pups. As for our Vet’s choice, the Hill’s Science Diet provides overall health benefits.

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