Top 10 Best Dog Foods for Urinary Health
While urinary health isn’t a very popular subject, it’s critical to your dog’s overall well-being. Kidney stones and urinary tract infections can be very painful and dangerous to your dog. In addition to the trauma on your pup, certain types of stones may require surgery to treat, and all types of stones may require surgery for analysis so your vet can form a prevention plan to keep them from reforming.
We’ve reviewed the seven best dog foods specifically for urinary health to help you treat and prevent kidney stones and UTIs in your pup. Different stones will require different foods to help them dissolve (if dissolution is possible), but generally, dogs with urinary health problems may benefit from a wet food formula since dehydration is a primary concern. Dry food absorbs the water in your dog’s body, which may make it harder to urinate as well as digest food if they aren’t drinking enough water already or aren’t in optimal health. However, wet food can be more expensive, so we’ve included a mix of wet and dry in our reviews.
- Top 10 Best Wet Dog Food to Mix with Dry
- Top 10 Best Dog Foods for American Bulldogs
- Top 10 Best Dog Foods for German Shorthaired Pointer
Which supplements can I give my dog for better urinary health?
You can give your dog urinary health supplements for the specific issue. There are anti-inflammatory supplements available for infections and there are a lot of cranberry based supplements as well. Cranberry is a natural cleanser and can help keep all kinds of urinary issues at bay.
Which medicines can I give my dog for better urinary health?
Any number of underlying reasons can cause urinary health issues. The medication depends on the diagnosis, which is only possible after proper medical examination. It is never a good idea to use medicines without your vet’s prescription and authorization.
How can I increase my dog’s urination?
Encourage your dog to drink more water. Switch to canned food for at least one meal a day. If your dog is deliberately holding its pee, gently squeeze the lower tummy between thumb and finger to let it release the urine.
Which dog breeds are more susceptible to urinary issues?
Smaller breeds and toy breeds are often more susceptible to urinary issues possibly because of the smaller bladder and narrower track. These breeds urinate less frequently. Encourage your little one to drink more water.
Can commercial dog food cause urinary health issues?
Low-quality commercial dog food is a common cause of urinary health issues in dogs. They do not contain the proper balance of minerals and nutrients that aid mineral absorption. They also have a low pH level, which provides a suitable environment for bacteria to thrive.
Can my dog die from urinary diseases?
Untreated lower urinary problems can lead to serious medical issues in addition to causing discomfort for your pet. Bladder infections can move to the kidneys and cause life-threatening infections. Stones can cause partial or complete obstruction of the urethra, preventing a dog from urinating.
Can a lack of urination cause urinary problems in dogs?
Lack of urination may be a symptom of an existing urinary problem in the first place. However, if your dog doesn’t drink a lot of water, or holds its pee habitually, it can become the cause of a urinary infection or stones.
The 10 Best Dog Foods for Urinary Tract Health
Nom Nom Fresh Pork Recipe
We love Nom Nom Fresh because it uses fresh, real ingredients to feed your dog! This food is formulated by Board Certified Veterinary Nutritionists and customized to fit your pet’s health needs. This food has a high moisture level which is great for dogs with sensitive digestive and urinary systems. This recipe features pork as the main ingredient, providing a healthy but not excessive source of protein for dogs who might particularly need a protein-restricted diet due to cystine stones.
You can order Nom Nom Fresh through a subscription-based plan on their website or buy a sample at a PetSmart near you. Although we like how it’s more convenient than veterinary prescription diets, we’re a little sad to admit this food is not available on Chewy.
Blue Buffalo Urinary Care Dog Food – Best Value
The Blue Buffalo Urinary Care Dog Food is the food we picked as the best value. This brand is inexpensive and can help with weight management as well as urinary tract problems, making it the best dog food for urinary health for the money. The ingredients that work to promote weight loss also help prevent the formation of kidney stones. Antioxidants provide an immune system boost while B vitamins give an increase in energy levels. Chicken is the first ingredient, and it’s free of chemical preservatives.
Some of our dogs didn’t like it, and it contains a lot of peas. A recent FDA warning says that peas may be linked to heart disease in dogs, so you only want to use this food as needed.
- Some dogs don’t like it
- Not suitable for long term use
- Chicken first ingredient
- Free of chemical preservatives preservatives
- Help with weight management
Hills Diet Urinary Tract Dog Food – Best Overall
The Hills Diet c/d Urinary Tract Health Dry Dog Food won choice for the best overall dog food for urinary health. This food features a unique formula that reduces protein, magnesium, and phosphorus to help reduce the chance of your pet getting a kidney stone. The formula also reduces sodium to help prevent high blood pressure, and added antioxidants will help fight infection and reduce swelling.
Our dogs didn’t mind eating this food, and our only complaint is that you only get a small amount per package.
- Small amount
- Reduced protein, magnesium, and phosphorus
- Low sodium
Royal Canin Adult Urinary SO Moderate Calorie Thin Slices In Gravy – Vet’s Choice
|Main ingredients:||Water Sufficient For Processing, Chicken, Pork By-Products, Pork Liver, Chicken By-Products|
Our vets like this food because it’s formulated to dissolve and prevent struvite stones while maintaining a healthy calorie count. Your doggie will enjoy this gravy-based wet food as opposed to hard, dry food that’s also harder for their bodies to process. Royal Canin Veterinary Diets do require a prescription from your vet, but they’re easy to order on Chewy as long as you have a letter of recommendation and your vet’s contact information.
Royal Canin Urinary Dog Food – Premium Choice
The Royal Canin Canine Urinary SO Dry Dog Food won our premium choice award for dog food for urinary health. It uses ingredients that work to increase the volume of urine your pet expels. It also provides a balanced diet that has less protein, magnesium, and phosphorus, to help prevent the growth of new stones. This food also lowers the pH of your pet’s urine to create an acidic environment resistant to creating stones.
Most of our dogs like this food, but it is costly and can set you back quite a bit if you want to use it long term or need to feed several dogs with it.
- Increases urine volume
- Reduced protein magnesium and phosphorus
- Acidifies urine to prevent stone buildup
Hill’s Prescription Multicare Chicken Flavor Wet Dog Food
|Main ingredients:||Water, Beef By-Products, Chicken, Rice, Whole Grain Corn, Pork Liver|
|Calories:||446 kcal/13 oz. can|
This food features the same health benefits as its dry food form, but it’s even better for urinary health because it’s a wet formula. We like how this food is low-sodium and uses carefully calculated levels of essential nutrients such as magnesium and calcium. These minerals should be included in your dog’s diet, but they may cause kidney stones if consumed excessively. To purchase from Chewy, you’ll need a prescription letter from your vet as well as your clinic’s contact information.
Health Extension Chicken Dog Food – Best For Puppies
Health Extension Grain Free Dog Food removes the extra ingredients and gives you 95% pure chicken in a can and natural preservatives. This food is for puppies, and it eliminates the guesswork of finding out which ingredients are giving your puppy a problem. Once any urinary troubles pass, it makes a great occasional snack.
This kind of food is not cheap, and many of the cans we received had dents. We also found that the food had a bad smell and scent tended to linger.
- Lots of dented cans
- Bad smell
- Chicken main ingredient
- Few ingredients
Nulo Grain Free Dry Dog Food
Nulo Grain Free Healthy Weight Dry Dog Food contains no corn, wheat, or soy products that can lead to digestive troubles in your pet. This brand features as the first several ingredients, and it also contains L-Carnitine so help boost the effectiveness of fatty acids like omega-3.
What we didn’t like about this brand is it has a lot of peas, which might lead to heart problems in the future. Besides that, only half our dogs would eat it, so dinner time was a struggle.
- Our dogs didn’t like it
- No corn ingredients
- Meat listed as the first several ingredients
Hill’s Prescription Urinary Care Original Flavor Dry Dog Food
|Main ingredients:||Brewers Rice, Corn Starch, Pork Fat, Egg Product, Powdered Cellulose|
This food is formulated to help your dog if they have non-struvite stones. Cystine stones require a low-protein, low-sodium food to dissolve the stones. Hill’s Prescription Diet u/d contains less protein than other dry foods and also features reduced levels of calcium to lessen the risk of kidney stones overall. We thought this food seemed incredibly expensive considering the first two ingredients are brewer’s rice and corn starch, but it does have what your dog needs to treat cystine and urate stones. This is a veterinary diet that requires a prescription to purchase.
Purina Pro Plan Urinary Tract Health Dog Food
The Purina Canine UR Urinary Ox/St Dog Food is the last dog food we have to review for you concerning dog foods for urinary health. This food also has a reduced fat content and reduced salt content to keep stable blood pressure.
This kind of dog food is good for helping with weight loss, but its not the best for urinary health. The protein level in this strand is too high for dogs susceptible to struvite stones in the kidneys or the bladder. We also didn’t feel like we got very much per package, and we noticed that it gave our puppies some bad gas.
- Protein too high
- Small amount
- Causes gas
- No salt
Buyer’s Guide: Choosing the Best Dog Foods for Urinary Health
If your dog suffers from poor urinary health, they most likely have a urinary tract infection (UTI), kidney stones, or both. Treatment will vary depending on the type of stones, but in general your vet will follow this plan for treating kidney stones.
Cure the existing UTI.
Your vet may prescribe antibiotics or other medicine to help your dog’s body heal. Sometimes the stones will pass on their own once the inflammation goes down.
Analyze the stones for further treatment.
Your vet may want to perform surgery to remove some of the stones so they can identify what type your dog has. This will help your vet make informed decisions on diet and treatment because different stones have different needs that may contradict others.
Prescribe or recommend appropriate foods that can fight that certain type of stone.
This is why it’s so important for at least one stone to be removed and analyzed by the vet. Though kidney stones form for a variety of reasons, some are food-related and may be prevented through the proper diet and medication.
Types of Kidney Stones and Dietary Requirements for Each
There are six major kinds of kidney stones. Each one has a different method of treatment and prevention, so it’s important to know which one your dog has so you have the best tools to help them.
Calcium Oxalate Stones
These stones unfortunately don’t dissolve, however, you may try feeding your dog a special diet to discourage them from forming. Find a food that’s low in calcium and protein in order to reduce the growth of calcium crystals and to make your dog’s urine more alkaline.
If your dog’s urine is too acidic, Purine stones may form. The good news is these stones may be dissolved with a protein-restricted diet, ample hydration, and curing a UTI if one has formed.
A low-sodium, protein-restricted diet and medication prescribed by your vet may dissolve these stones. You should keep your dog on their new food to prevent these stones from returning.
Calcium Phosphate Stones
These are more difficult to treat, but they rarely form. They don’t dissolve and aren’t as easy to prevent, but keeping your dog hydrated, reducing their sodium levels, and ensuring your dog’s urine is at the proper PH may help.
Thankfully, these stubborn stones rarely form because they have never dissolved on their own and will require surgery. Post-operation, your dog will need food with a high animal protein content and may especially benefit from a wet food formula.
After curing any existing UTI, the plan of action is to switch your dog’s food to a recipe with relatively high amounts of fat that still keeps your dog’s calories in check. Keep in mind your dog’s new food will make them excessively thirsty, so make sure the water bowl stays full. It’s possible struvite stones may dissolve with the proper diet.
We recommend keeping a close watch on your dog’s weight and making sure they get plenty of fluids. If your dog hasn’t been diagnosed with any stones yet, keeping your pet fit and fed with a well-balanced meal that features meat as the top ingredient and doesn’t have chemical preservatives is your best bet. Don’t use grain-free food unless your pet is overweight or prescribed by a vet.
If your pet has had stones, we recommend the Hills Diet 399 c/d Urinary Track Health Dry Dog Food, our pick for the best overall. This food features reduced protein, magnesium, and phosphorus, as well as antioxidants that can help fight any infections. The Blue Buffalo 801331 Urinary Care Dog Food is our pick for the best value and is an excellent choice for an overweight dog.
If you have found these dog foods for urinary health reviews helpful, please share them