Top 10 Best Dog Foods for Miniature Schnauzers

Top 10 Best Dog Foods for Miniature Schnauzers

Are you looking for the ultimate dog food formula to feed your Miniature Schnauzer? In this review, we analyze our favorite dog foods for each life stage, comparing some of the top formulas for your Miniature Schnauzer as a puppy, adult, and senior.

The Miniature Schnauzer is a little guy with big attitude. And for him to be his happy, sassy self, he needs the right fuel in his bowl. According to PetMD research, 90% of pet owners do not know what they should be putting in their dog’s bowls, let alone their nutritional needs.

We’ll teach you everything you need to know about the best dog foods for Miniature Schnauzers. From what nutrition he needs as a growing pup to how it changes right up to his golden years.

Let’s discuss the best ingredients to look for to find five of the best foods for each life stage, taking the hassle out of your decision. So, let’s discover the best dog food for your Mini Schnauzer and put the swag in his step.

Puppy Nutrient Needs

Your Miniature Schnauzer eventually grows into an 11 to 20-pound adult, and his first year is all about providing the best food to help him develop healthily. It pays dividends for his long-term health to feed him high-quality food. He is weaned off his mother’s milk at around six weeks old, so by the time you bring him home, he’ll be ready for dog food.

The most important thing you can do is to feed food designed for puppies. Puppy food contains more protein and fats for healthy development. In particular, docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) and arachidonic acid (ARA) are important fats for puppy growth. They support healthy cognitive and vision development, as well as overall wellness. Ingredients that supply these healthy omega fats are meat meals, fish, fish oils, and eggs.

Formulas designed for small breeds contain more energy per pound than all-breed or large-breed dog foods. Plus, the kibble pieces are small enough for your little pup to eat them comfortably. High-quality food also contains a variety of vitamins and minerals. These are essential during puppyhood because they support the development of a strong immune system. Look for fruits, veggies, and added supplements.

As we said, the protein content is higher in puppy food. The Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO) recommends that all puppies need a minimum protein content of 22%. Protein is essential for growth and muscle care because it is full of amino acids, which all living things need. Meat protein should always be the first ingredient.

Adult Nutrient Needs

  • At around 12 months, you should switch your Miniature Schnauzer to adult food. He has completed most of his growing now, so energy-rich puppy kibble is no longer needed. Adult foods focus on a more balanced diet to maintain a healthy body. Again, stick to small-breed dog foods that are small enough for your Schnauzer to eat with ease.
  • AAFCO recommends that adult dogs should eat a protein content of at least 18%. In addition to real meats, meat meals are a great source of protein. They are also a great source of healthy omega fats and glucosamine needed for joint support. Some dogs are intolerant of certain meats, and it’ll give them bad gas. Be sure to try new flavors, or a limited ingredient food, if your Schnauzer is gassy.
  • Prebiotic fiber helps with regular digestion and keeps dogs feeling fuller in between mealtimes. Peas, chicory root, beet pulp, and pumpkin are great sources of fiber to look for. Probiotic ingredients such as dried lactobacillus plantarum fermentation product promote friendly bacteria in his gut. These also lead to better digestion and less gas. Also, look for antioxidant-rich ingredients, such as blueberries and cranberries, for continued strong immunity.

Senior Nutrient Needs

  • When your Miniature Schnauzer reaches approximately eight years of age, it’s time to switch him to senior food. Once again, his nutritional needs are beginning to change. It’s different for every dog, but when he starts to put on weight and slow down activity, it’s time. Slowly transition him to avoid stomach upset.
  • Older dogs need much less energy than they did during adulthood, even sassy Schnauzers. Senior dog foods are lower in fats, calories, and often protein. Many senior options have a higher fiber content as fiber is low in calories. Plus, it bulks out his dinner, meaning he’ll feel fuller for longer. It’s important to keep your pooch trim. Otherwise, he’s more likely to suffer from weight-related health conditions.
  • High-quality senior formulas contain higher amounts of glucosamine and chondroitin, as these support joint health. Look for ingredients such as meat meals, fish, fish oil, cartilage, green-lipped mussels, and added glucosamine supplements. And to keep his immunity fighting fit, look for extra vitamins and minerals.

The 10 Best Dog Foods for Miniature Schnauzers

Royal Canin Miniature Schnauzer Dog Food – Premium Choice

Royal Canin Breed Health Nutrition Miniature Schnauzer Adult Dry Dog Food
Brand: Royal Canin
Type: Dry kibble
Target: Miniature Schnauzer
Calories per serving: 309
Protein: 23%
Fat: 10%
Fiber: 3.5%

We found a dog food that was explicitly designed for Miniature Schnauzers. However, it does cost significantly more than the average kibble. But if a price tag doesn’t deter you from providing a well-researched breed-specific diet, this is worth it.

This formula is intended for Miniature Schnauzers that are ten months old and older. Since this breed is prone to sensitive skin, the recipe contains tons of nourishing and soothing ingredients like vitamin A, EPA, and DHA, which promote incredible skin pH. It also has glucosamine and chondroitin for joint support.

The first ingredient is brewers rice followed by the primary protein source—chicken byproduct meal. This brand is also intended to control weight, maintaining a proper caloric intake. In one serving, there are 309 calories, totaling 3,477 calories in all. The guaranteed analysis of the product reads 23% crude protein, 10% crude fat, and 3.5% crude fiber.

This dog food has quite a comprehensive ingredients list, each with its own benefits. But most of all, we love the size of the kibble. Royal Canin specifically chose this kibble size to coincide with a Schnauzer’s muzzle shape and scissor bite. All in all, it seems to be a very detailed recipe that would benefit the breed tremendously.

Cons
  • Expensive choice
Pros
  • Explicitly tailored for Miniature Schnauzers
  • Kibble designed for a Schnauzer’s muzzle and bite
  • Designed for 10+ months of age

Iams Minichunks Dog Food

IAMS Adult MiniChunks Small Kibble High Protein Dry Dog Food
Brand: Iams
Type: Dry kibble
Target: Small breeds
Calories per serving: 380
Protein: 25%
Fat: 14%
Fiber: 4%

We thoroughly analyzed dog foods for Miniature Schnauzers, and the Iams Minichunks is a great choice. This adult dog food is ideal in texture, nutrition, and taste for miniature schnauzers to stay happy and healthy.

It’s affordable on most budgets and packed with valuable ingredients. With its small size, it allows your pup to chew with ease—avoiding bulky kibble troubles like tiresome extra chewing. We think most fully-grown Mini Schnauzers could benefit most from this.

This recipe is flavored with chicken and whole grains to give a well-balanced dose of protein as the first ingredient with healthy carbs like whole-grain corn and sorghum. In one serving, there are 380 calories, totaling 3,646 per bag. It contains 25% crude protein, 14% crude fat, and 4% fiber.

This recipe also contains many minerals and vitamins coming from additives like flaxseed, dried beet pulp, carrot, and dried egg. The vitamin E helps nourish the skin, calcium strengthens the bones, and omega fatty acids strengthen cell walls in the body.

While this might not work for certain sensitivities or allergies in Miniature schnauzers, a complete diet will keep them in mint condition throughout the adult years.

Cons
  • Might not work with certain dietary restrictions
Pros
  • Completely balanced formula
  • Mini pieces of kibble for easy chewing
  • Excellent source of protein, vitamins, and minerals

Pedigree Small Dog Nutrition Dog Food – Best Value

Pedigree Small Breed Adult Dry Dog Food, Chicken & Steak

Brand: Pedigree
Type: Dry kibble
Target: Small breeds
Calories per serving: 332
Protein: 21%
Fat: 11%
Fiber: 4%

If you’re trying to stick with a low-cost option that will be a smart choice for your Miniature Schnauzer, we think Pedigree Small Dog Complete Nutrition is worth considering. It seems to be the best food for Miniature Schnauzers for the money.

This recipe contains extra elements like glucosamine and chondroitin to strengthen joints and promote health and longevity for years. It also has added linoleic acid, calcium, phosphorus, zinc.

This recipe is flavored with grilled steak and vegetables, which really appeals to the tastebuds. However, the main protein source is chicken byproduct meal. This product contains no artificial flavors or added sugar. It has 332 calories per serving. The guaranteed analysis of the product reads 21% crude protein, 11% crude fat, and 4% crude fiber.

But we want to point out that this food does contain potentially irritating ingredients like corn, wheat, soy, and dairy. Some dogs just don’t agree with these common potential allergens. If you choose this dry kibble, make sure to watch for signs of an allergy like flaky skin, greasy coat, and frequent ear and skin infections.

Cons
  • Potentially triggering ingredients
Pros
  • Affordable on a budget
  • Added glucosamine and chondroitin for healthy joints
  • No artificial flavors or added sugar

Ollie Fresh Slow Cooked Dog Food – Best Overall

Ollie fresh dog food beef recipe

Brand: Ollie
Type: Fresh dog food
Target: All dog breeds
Calories per serving: 1298 kcal ME/kg
Protein: 10%
Fat: 5%
Fiber: 2%

Ollie is our best overall dog food for Miniature Schnauzers. This fresh dog food offers a subscription service and direct delivery of fresh, quality food that goes in your refrigerator. Each ingredient is minimally processed and contains large amounts of real animal protein, as well as organ meats, fruits, and vegetables for complete and balanced nutrition in a delicious package.

All recipes are designed with guidance from veterinarians and researchers, and the food is safe for human consumption. There are no fillers, artificial flavors, and preservatives. Ollie offers both grain-free and grain-inclusive recipes. There are four protein recipes to choose from: beef, chicken, turkey, and lamb. The subscription is convenient but may not be suitable for everyone. You have to plan to make sure you have food when you need it, because this isn’t available in stores. It’s also a little on the pricey side, especially for a large dog.

Cons
  • Pricey
  • Subscription may not suit everyone
Pros
  • Fresh, minimally processed food
  • Formulated with guidance from vets
  • Human-edible
  • Convenient subscription

Cesar Poultry Variety Pack Dog Food

Cesar Poultry Variety Pack with Real Chicken

Brand: Cesar
Type: Wet food
Target: Daily health
Calories per serving: 95-105
Protein: 8.5%
Fat: 4%
Fiber: 1%

Our pups said “yes” to the Cesar Poultry Variety Pack. These little individually sealed loaves make an excellent meal choice on their own, but they also make a phenomenal topper for dry kibble. We found the combination just the right—crunchy and savory. But the choice is yours!

Your pup gets quite the random flavor experience here, making every mealtime a delightful surprise. There are four flavors total—grilled chicken, oven-roasted chicken, Turkey, and duck. Each one is smothered in a gravy sauce for extra moisture and enhanced flavor.

Each flavor contains the exact same guaranteed analysis, which is 8.5% crude protein, 4% crude fat, and 1% crude fiber. It also has a whopping 82% moisture for extra hydration in the diet. The caloric value for each flavor differs slightly between 95 and 105 calories.

This recipe is grain-free with whole protein as the diet ingredient. It has just the right vitamins and minerals to enhance your dog’s overall health—not to mention, the pre-portioned packages are super convenient for owners.

However, because the packs are so small, they don’t stretch nearly as far when you solely feed wet food.

Cons
  • Need to be replaced often
Pros
  • Convenient pre-portioned packages
  • Four delicious flavors
  • High in protein and moisture

Iams ProActive Health Smart Puppy Small & Toy Breed – Best for Puppies

Iams ProActive Health Smart Puppy Small & Toy Breed Dry Dog Food
Brand: Iams
Type: Dry kibble
Target: Puppy
Calories per serving: 445
Protein: 30%
Fat: 18%
Fiber: 4%

If you have a brand-new sprout and want to get them off to a good start in life, think about Iams ProActive Health Smart Puppy Small and Toy Breed. It has compelling ingredients that will give your bubbly, active breed the proper amount of energy, proper digestion, and excellent coat and skin quality.

A super terrific aspect of this dry kibble is that it contains 22 key ingredients that are found in a mother’s natural milk supply. It has a solid amount of DHA to promote ideal brain function and sharpness.

The first ingredient is premium-sourced farm-raised chicken, serving up a solid protein as the base. The guaranteed analysis of the product reads 30% crude protein, 18% crude fat, and 4% crude fiber. In one serving there are 445 calories, totaling 3,762 calories per bag.

Since it is specially formulated for small breeds, the kibble is much smaller than some other puppy foods, realizing your pup might have a challenge eating larger chow. The only downfall we could even find is that the bag is a bit small, though we realize it is meant for tiny pups.

In our opinion, it’s the best puppy food for Miniature Schnauzers.

Cons
  • Small bag
Pros
  • 22 key ingredients
  • Supports full body development
  • Ideal kibble size

ACANA Wholesome Grains Small Breed Recipe Dog Food

ACANA Wholesome Grains Small Breed Recipe Gluten-Free Dry Dog Food 4lbs
Brand: Acana
Type: Dry kibble
Target: Small breed
Calories per serving: 413
Protein: 27%
Fat: 17%
Fiber: 6%

ACANA Wholesome Grains Small Breed Recipe is an ideal choice if you’re going for an all-natural, carefully crafted recipe that reduces the likelihood of allergies. The company goes to lengths to ensure this recipe is free of potato, legumes, gluten, and artificial ingredients.

Instead, this recipe contains a comprehensive list containing 60% animal protein and 40% vegetables, fruits, grains, and botanicals. The grains used in this recipe, like sorghum and oat groats, are high in fiber to promote excellent gut health.

The first ingredient is real deboned chicken, ensuring an optimal protein is the main source of sustenance. In one serving, there are 413 calories. While this may be a bit much for less active Schnauzers, it’s perfect for most. The guaranteed analysis of the product reads 27% crude protein, 17% crude fat, and 6% crude fiber.

If you’re looking for an all-natural food source with no harmful ingredients or extras, this is definitely a prize-winning pick—especially for picky eaters. But the bags are very small and it can get pretty expensive over time.

Cons
  • Bags don’t last long, need replacing often
Pros
  • High amounts of animal protein
  • No fillers
  • High in fiber

Orijen Small Breed Dog Food

Orijen Small Breed
Brand: Orijen
Type: Dry kibble
Target: Grain sensitivity
Calories per serving: 473
Protein: 38%
Fat: 18%
Fiber: 4%

Orijen Small Breed is a power-packed protein selection full of numerous animal ingredients that cater to your pup’s wild side. It is made from both fresh and raw ingredients, enhancing the natural carnivorous nature of any dog with five fresh or raw protein sources.

In fact, protein sources flood the first 10+ ingredients in the bag. These five sources include turkey, chicken, turkey giblets, quail, and whole blue whiting. Plus, it contains antioxidants, DHA, EPA, omega fatty acids, glucosamine, and 1 million CFU live probiotics.

This kibble not only serves up top-notch protein, it also has an impressive ingredient list of healthy vegetables and fruits like lentils, pumpkin, apples, pears, cranberries, and kelp. In one serving, there are 473 calories, totaling 3,940 calories per bag. The guaranteed analysis shows 38% crude protein, 18% crude fat, and 4% crude fiber.

The recipe is free of grain, corn, wheat, and soy—so, it’s perfect for those minis who have allergies or sensitivities. However, it might not fit into the budget, as it doesn’t stretch far for your dollar.

Cons
  • Expensive
Pros
  • First 10 products are all protein sources
  • Contains probiotics and other supplements
  • Contains antioxidants
  • Free from fillers

American Journey Active Life Senior Dog Food

American Journey Active Life Formula Senior
Brand: American Journey
Type: Dry kibble
Target: Active senior
Calories per serving: 319
Protein: 25%
Fat: 11%
Fiber: 7%

If your Schnauzer is getting up there in years and you’re looking for a smooth diet transition, American Journey Senior Active Life Formula is noteworthy. You could use it as a standalone diet or mix it with the wet food. Whatever makes it easier for your senior guy or gal.

Many older Miniature Schnauzers maintain a peppy lifestyle well into their older years. This dry kibble contains everything your senior needs to stay healthy, including glucosamine, L-carnitine, and chondroitin to keep joints strong and working smoothly.

This recipe is flavored with chicken, brown rice, and vegetables. We like that it has modest caloric value without slacking on other ingredients, like fiber. In one serving, it contains 319 calories, totaling 3,251 calories per bag. The guaranteed analysis reads 25% crude protein, 11% crude fat, and 7%.

If your senior has severe or advanced dental disease, you might want to opt for a wet diet instead. You shouldn’t feed this recipe to dogs younger than seven years of age.

Cons
  • Not for dogs younger than 7 years
  • Too hard for sensitive teeth
Pros
  • Well-balanced nutrition for seniors
  • Modest calorie content
  • High in fiber

Rachael Ray Nutrish Real Chicken & Veggies Dog Food

Rachael Ray Nutrish Real Chicken & Veggies Recipe Dry Dog Food
Brand: Rachael Ray Nutrish
Type: Dry kibble
Target: Everyday health
Calories per serving: 340
Protein: 25%
Fat: 14%
Fiber: 4%

When it comes to wide availability with optimal nutrition, you really can’t beat Rachael Ray Nutrish Real Chicken & Veggies. It has an excellent selection of ingredients that will benefit Miniature Schnauzer and you can find this dog food just about anywhere, making it super convenient to replace.

This recipe promotes everyday health by serving up easy-to-digest grains like brown rice and tons of vitamins, minerals, and much-needed taurine. Rachael really knows what she’s doing in the kitchen and the same goes for her carefully crafted pet recipes.

This formula sparks the taste buds with whole protein and delicious veggies. In one serving, there are 340 calories. The guaranteed analysis reads 25% crude protein, 14% crude fat, and 4% crude fiber.

The only problem is that these recipes are crafted with common proteins that can be an allergen to some pups. If your Schnauzer has sensitive skin, it might potentially irritate, too.

Cons
  • Might not work for a Schnauzer with skin sensitivities
Pros
  • Readily available in-store and online
  • Well-crafted
  • Solid ingredients

Blue Buffalo Life Protection Formula Small Breed Dog Food

Blue Buffalo Life Protection
Brand: Blue Buffalo
Type: Dry kibble
Target: Everyday health
Calories per serving: 396
Protein: 26%
Fat: 15%
Fiber: 4%

We couldn’t go without mentioning Blue Buffalo Life Protection Formula Small Breed. It is Blue’s recipe for little ones, giving them all the benefits of their regular Life Protection Formula with a kick of energy in smaller pieces so they can better enjoy their meal.

As in every bag of Blue Buffalo, it comes with LifeSource Bits, which are mouth-watering meaty morsels that add flavor and texture to the kibble. This recipe was designed to meet the high energy requirements of small dogs, which means it’s even better for the active lifestyles of the breed.

This dog food is flavored with chicken and brown rice. With deboned chicken as the first ingredient, it gives your mini just the right amount of protein to maintain healthy muscle tone throughout adulthood. In one serving, there are 396 calories. The guaranteed analysis reads 27% crude protein, 15% crude fat, and 4% crude fiber.

Blue buffalo also does not contain any byproducts, corn, wheat, or soy. So, it contains only easily digestible ingredients for your pup to enjoy.

Cons
  • Not for all diet restrictions
Pros
  • LifeSource Bits
  • No corn, wheat, or soy
  • Great for everyday nutrition for small dogs

Buyer’s Guide: Choosing the Best Dog Food for Miniature Schnauzers

There are so many different dog foods on the market, it could make your head spin. The type of dog food you choose for your Miniature Schnauzer should depend greatly on their activity level, current state of health, age, allergies, and sensitivities.

Allergies 

If your dog has been diagnosed with any type of food allergy, you need to get a diet plan to avoid the triggering ingredients completely. Luckily, there are many over-the-counter commercial dog food that you can buy that are specially formulated to meet the dietary needs of sensitive dogs.

Sensitivities 

Miniature schnauzers are especially prone to having skin issues. Buying a recipe that will nourish the skin and say the digestive system is paramount for your minis overall health.

Dental Health

As your Miniature Schnauzer ages, dental problems are not all that uncommon. If your dog’s teeth are not what they used to be, you’re going to need food that is soft enough your pup can enjoy it!

Activity

If your dog is particularly hyper, you need to get a kibble that coincides with their spunky lifestyle. Active lifestyle formulas are typically higher in calories and carbohydrates to replenish the nutrients our body expends during the day.

 

Types of Dog Food for Miniature Schnauzers

 

Wet Food

Wet food makes an excellent standalone dish or as a topper for dry kibble. You can typically buy it in solitary cans or in packs. Wet food offers more moisture content than its dry food competitor.

Dry Kibble

Dry kibble is dog food that has been reduced to a mixture and baked to a crunchy texture. It is arguably the most common food available for dogs on the market. Owners tend to go in this direction because it has a very long shelf life.

Raw 

Since so many owners and nutritionists aim to get canines in touch with their natural roots, raw dog food is becoming much more common in the industry.

Freeze-dried

Freeze-dried food has been preserved using the method of dehydration. Freeze-dried foods typically keep more nutrients because they have not been put down like some others. Many owners are turning to this alternative as the dog food market grows. Currently, freeze-dried foods are typically more expensive than traditional forms of dog food.

Moist Food

Moist food typically comes in sealed packages and has the consistency of both wet and dry food. This kind typically has more preservatives than other brands, so make sure that you check the ingredients before purchasing.

Homemade

If you don’t mind a little more prep time in the kitchen, you could try your hand making your own dog food at home. Using a combination of fresh ingredients, you can be your own chef whipping up a delicious feast for your dogs that you can then refrigerate and freeze for later use.

Final Thoughts

We still stand by our number one choice—Ollie. This fresh dog food offers a subscription service and direct delivery of fresh, quality food that goes in your refrigerator.

However, if you’re looking for the biggest savings on the market that still rocks quality, Pedigree Small Dog Complete Nutrition has a modest price tag. It’s also meant just for small dogs, and it has a savory flavor dogs seem to love.

No matter what you choose or which food suits your needs best, we are confident this list has your dog’s next diet therein.

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