After spending all day Saturday tending to the yard, the last thing you want is your dog to walk outside Sunday morning and immediately kill the grass with its pee. “Lawn burn” or yellow, dead grass is caused by high levels of nitrogen in your dog’s urine. Though we typically think of pee as acidic, it’s actually a 5.5-7 on the pH scale and can be higher if a significant level of nitrogen is present.
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Excessive nitrogen levels can be caused by eating a diet that’s too rich in proteins or not drinking enough water. Your dog’s food can help combat the problem if you give them a high-quality diet that contains a larger amount of moisture and lesser amount of protein that they have been eating. We’ve reviewed top dog foods that address these issues and offer your pet a well-balanced diet.
The 10 Best Dog Foods to Prevent Lawn Burn
Purina One Natural True Instinct Dry Dog Food – Best Value
|Turkey, chicken meal, soy flour, beef fat preserved with mixed-tocopherols, whole grain wheat
Purina One Natural True Instinct with Real Turkey and Venison High Protein Dog Food is the best dog food for lawn burn for the money. This formula is packed with minerals, vitamins, and nutrients for your dog. It is made with real turkey and venison to provide your pup with the protein it needs for a healthy heart and strong muscles.
The nutritious blend has added calcium to support healthy teeth and gums and glucosamine for joint health. The omega-6 fatty acids support its healthy skin and coat. Add some water to the kibble to provide your pup with added hydration. The added hydration may help to reduce the nitrogen in your dog’s urine.
The formula is highly digestible and does not contain artificial flavors or preservatives. Customers’ reviews are mixed on the taste. They also report inconsistency in flavor. Dogs would eat one bag and refuse to eat another.
- Some dogs won’t eat it
- Formula is inconsistent
- No artificial flavors or preservatives
- Highly digestible
- Contains real turkey
Ollie Lamb Dish with Cranberries
|Lamb, butternut squash, lamb liver, kale, rice, chickpeas, cranberries
Ollie is another fresh food service that we love, but we especially like the Lamb Dish with Cranberries recipe because lamb isn’t known to be a common food allergen. A dog who’s allergic to an ingredient in their food can give your beautiful yard other issues besides strong pee! Lamb Dish has a high moisture content of 70%, which is great for diluting their pee, and a protein content of 11% which is a healthy but not excessive amount.
We like how this recipe uses cranberries and kale, which are superfoods. We also like how it includes rice for fiber. We’re not too fond of the chickpeas due to the 2018 study by the FDA, but at least this isn’t a grain-free recipe. Like all fresh-frozen dinners, Ollie can get a little more expensive than your average fare.
The Farmer’s Dog – Best Overall
|Chicken, Brussel sprouts, chicken liver, bok-choy cabbage, broccoli
The Farmer’s Dog is the best overall dog food for lawn burns. The Farmer’s Dog Food is formulated with ingredients that are human-grade and approved by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). The main ingredients in the recipes are chicken, beef, and turkey. You can stick to your dog’s favorite or switch it up for variety. The formulas contain healthy ingredients like bok choy cabbage, brussels sprouts, carrots, sweet potatoes, lentils, spinach, and kale, to name a few.
The recipes are customized for your dog based on the information you provided. The food is formulated to give your pup a tasty meal packed with the nutrition it needs.
It does contain ingredients that are controversial, however. Some studies1 have linked lentils and peas to heart disease in dogs. We recommend getting the advice of your vet before feeding your dog any peas and lentils.
The Farmer’s Dog is a subscription service that is delivered to your home. The high-quality food and the convenience of home delivery come at a price. If the cost is within your budget, it is an excellent choice for a quality dog food.
- Subscription service
- Contains peas and lentils
- Main ingredient is meat
- Contains fruits and vegetables
Blue Buffalo Homestyle Recipe Canned Dog Food
|Chicken, chicken broth, chicken liver, carrots, peas
We chose Blue Buffalo Homestyle Recipe Chicken Dinner with Garden Vegetables and Brown Rice Canned Dog Food for our third choice for dog food for lawn burn. The moist and tender chunks of chicken provide your pup with a high-quality diet. Your pup is sure to love this wet and tasty meal. The wet food is nutritionally balanced and complete. You can feed this alone or mixed with kibble for texture. Blue Buffalo uses quality ingredients like chicken, sweet potatoes, and peas. Some studies1 link peas to heart disease in dogs, however.
The ingredients in Blue Buffalo recipes come from reputable suppliers in the U.S., Canada, and New Zealand. Anything sourced from outside the U.S. is tested for quality and safety. Among the reviews, customers complain of lack of consistency in the product. There are also mixed reviews on the taste. Fussy eaters won’t eat it. If you plan to change your dog’s diet, consult with your veterinarian.
- Inconsistency in product
- Picky eaters won’t eat it
- High quality ingredients
- Made with real chicken
- Ingredients are quality tested
Merrick Real Duck Dinner Canned Food – Vet’s Choice
|Deboned duck, duck liver, turkey broth, dried egg product, natural flavor
After reviewing the best dog foods for lawn burn, our vet’s choice is Merrick Grain-Free real Duck Dinner Canned Dog food. The high-quality ingredients contained in this recipe start with deboned duck. The food is moist and tasty, which is sure to entice your pet’s palate. The ingredients do not include any peas, grains, corn, potatoes, soy, or wheat. Animal sources make up 96% of the protein in the formula.
The Merrick Duck Dinner is rich in vitamins and minerals and does not contain artificial ingredients, preservatives, colors, or flavors. The ingredients for the food are sourced from the U.S., France, and in some instances, China. The company tests products before and during production to ensure the quality and safety of all the ingredients in the food. They maintain rigorous quality standards. Some reviewers report that their dog does not like the taste. You may want to try it before making a large purchase since it is a bit costly.
- It’s pricey
- Some ingredients from China
- High-quality ingredients
- No artificial flavors, colors, or preservatives
- High safety standards
Blue Buffalo Baby Blue Healthy Growth Formula Puppy Food – Best for Puppies
|Deboned chicken, chicken meal, brown rice, oatmeal, barley
In reviewing the best dog food for lawn burns we picked Blue Buffalo Baby Blue Healthy Growth Formula Natural Chicken and Brown Rice Recipe Puppy Dry Food for our best choice for puppies. The puppy formula will provide your growing puppy with fatty acids, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants for a complete and healthy diet. To provide your pup with added hydration, mix some water into the kibble.
The deboned chicken is mixed with veggies, fruit, and grains for a tasty and nutritious meal that most canines love. It may not be a desirable choice for picky eaters, however. Unless you own a mini breed, pet owners were not happy with the tiny pieces of kibble. Customer reviews complain about the lack of availability of smaller bags of food.
- Tiny kibble
- First ingredient is chicken
- Contains fruits and vegetables
- Tasty to most pups
Nutro Hearty Stew Canned Dog Food
|Turkey, pork broth, chicken broth, chicken liver, sweet potatoes
In our reviews, Nutro Hearty Stew Turkey, Sweet Potato, and Green Bean Cuts in Gravy Canned Dog Food was one of our top picks for dog food for lawn burn. The wet food has turkey as the first ingredient. It contains no wheat, corn, soy, or chicken by-product meal. It will provide your pet with a nutritious meal without artificial colors, flavors, or preservatives.
The stew turkey recipe is made in the U.S. from high quality ingredients. Nutro uses ingredients only from trusted suppliers and farmers. The formula provides your dog with the vitamins, nutrients, and minerals for a balanced and nutritious meal. Other than picky eaters, customers report their dogs like the taste and gobble it up. It also may give some dogs gas.
- Can give dogs gas
- Not for picky eaters
- Made in the U.S.
- No artificial colors or flavors
- No preservatives
- High-quality ingredients
The Honest Kitchen Whole Grain Dehydrated Dog Food
|Dehydrated turkey, organic oats, dehydrated potatoes, organic flaxseed, dehydrated carrots
In our review for dog foods for lawn burns, we chose The Honest Kitchen Whole Grain Turkey Recipe Dehydrated Dog Food for one of our top picks. The recipes are made with real wholesome food like organic oats, apples, and cabbage. It contains no by-products, fillers, or preservatives. The human-grade food is sure to please your pup’s palate. Not only is it tasty, but it also provides your dog with balanced nutrition that is formulated under strict quality control.
The food comes in grain-free and grain-inclusive formulas. Since the food is dehydrated, you can add enough water to make it thick or soupy. If your pup is not a big drinker, add lots of water to the food. The Honest Kitchen is one of the higher-priced foods for dogs. Some reviewers are turned off by the consistency of the food, and their dogs won’t eat it.
- High priced
- Not for picky eaters
- No preservatives
- Human-grade ingredients
- Grain-free and grain-inclusive available
- Organic ingredients
Canidae Pure All Stages Limited Ingredient Canned Food
|Lamb, lamb broth, turkey broth, turkey, chicken
For pups that may need limited ingredients, Canidae Pure All Stages Grain-Free Limited Ingredient Lamb, Turkey, and Chicken Recipe Canned Dog Food is our pick for a limited ingredient dog food for lawn burns. It has lamb as the main ingredient. It also includes high-quality proteins, like chicken and turkey, and it is limited to seven key ingredients for dogs with sensitive stomachs. The recipe does not contain wheat, soy, grain, or corn.
The complete and balanced nutrition is formulated for dogs in all stages of life. Peas are a controversial ingredient1 and are included in the recipe. You should seek the advice of your vet before feeding your dog peas.
Since the food tends to have a sticky consistency, some reviews find it bothersome. They report having to use two spoons to scoop it out of the can. They also find it takes longer to clean the dog bowl. Fortunately, the dogs don’t seem to mind—they like the taste.
- Sticky consistency
- Controversial ingredients
- Dogs like the taste
- Good for all stages of life
- Limited ingredients for sensitive stomachs
Just Food for Dogs Chicken & White Rice Recipe
|Chicken thighs, Long-grain white rice, spinach, carrots, apples
We highly recommend the Chicken & White Rice meal because it’s an excellent, human-grade food that’s formulated for all life stages. The 72% moisture content is so beneficial for dogs with strong urine because it helps dilute the pee, and 8% protein isn’t an excessive amount that would lead to a high nitrogen content.
Unlike most fresh-frozen meal subscriptions, Just Food for Dogs is available on Chewy to buy once or eligible for auto-ship. This makes meal planning for your pup much easier because you can just add their food to their standard order instead of going to the store or setting up a separate subscription plan.
Unfortunately, like most fresh dog food, Just Food for Dogs is a little expensive. The Chicken & White Rice recipe also isn’t a good match for your dog if you suspect they might have food allergies because chicken is a common culprit.
Buyer’s Guide: How to Pick the Best Dog Food to Prevent Lawn Burn
Your dog and your lawn can have a symbiotic or toxic relationship depending on how you treat them both. Chemical insecticides and pesticides in your yard can be harmful to dogs, but a dog with a high urine pH can kill the grass. Although there are supplements and home remedies out there that claim they lower the pH of your dog’s urine, we don’t recommend them because they might cause kidney harm.
We recommend cutting to the chase, dealing with the problem as naturally as possible. For your yard, choose non-toxic pesticides and insecticides that won’t harm your dog. You can also dilute your dog’s urine with water from a hose or sprinkler if you’re concerned. For your dog, we rounded up a list of foods to review that shouldn’t cause excessive nitrogen build-up in your dog’s body, especially if you make sure they drink plenty of water. Some elements we looked for in foods to prevent lawn burn include:
Moderate protein content
Protein is one of the most vital nutrients for your dog. You shouldn’t feed them a low-protein diet unless medically necessary, but at the same time a high protein diet may cause a build-up of nitrogen. You should aim for a moderate amount of protein in their food to maintain a good balance.
High moisture content
Digesting dry kibble takes more water out of your dog’s body through its poop, leaving your dog’s urine more concentrated as a result. Fresh food supplies your dog with extra hydration beyond what they’re receiving from the water bowl.
Not as likely to cause GI issues
We noted which foods here are more allergen-friendly than others because pee isn’t the only thing that can wreck your yard! Dogs who have trouble processing their food may develop chronic diarrhea, which is not only messy, but dehydrates them further and can lead to further health problems. If your dog becomes dehydrated, their pee will be more concentrated than if they retained a healthy amount of water through the digestive process.
Our reviews found The Farmer’s Dog to be the Best Overall choice for a high-quality diet to help prevent lawn burns. For pet owners on a tight budget, add some water to Purina One Natural True Instinct with Real Turkey & Venison High Protein Dry Dog Food. It will ensure your pet gets the water he needs. Our premium choice is Blue Buffalo Homestyle Recipe Chicken Dinner with Garden Vegetables & Brown Rice Canned Dog Food. Since puppies require nutritious food to help them grow, we picked Blue Buffalo Baby Blue Healthy Growth Formula Natural Chicken and Brown Rice Recipe Puppy Dry Food. Our vet’s choice for dog food to prevent lawn burns is Merrick Grain-Free Real Duck Dinner Canned Dog Food.