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Golden Retrievers are no doubt a delight. Their presence often lights up any room! It is no wonder why they are one of the top choices of pet for millions of enthusiasts worldwide.
Due to their particular needs, specific nutrients and ingredients that their foods should contain, and adequate portions.
Over the years, I have had to do pretty extensive research on the best dog food for Golden Retrievers and try out quite many of these foods.
One of the things I discovered is that not all dog foods available in the market are suitable for goldens.
My top pick goes to Wellness Large Breed Complete Health.
I do understand that there are chances of your choice slightly deferring due to personal preferences. For this reason, I have further included reviews of the best dog foods for Golden Retrievers.
Table of Contents
Best Dog Foods for Golden Retrievers Reviews
Are you looking for a dog food that comes with a formulation of natural ingredients to give your furry pals both what their bodies need and their taste buds crave?
You may want to consider the Wellness Large Breed Complete Health Adult Deboned Chicken & Brown Rice Recipe Dry Dog Food.
This product is formulated to support large dogs and their nutritional needs.
It gets a more significant percentage of its protein from animal-based sources, which help to build lean muscles and restore damaged tissue.
It also features natural and wholesome ingredients and super nutrients such as omega fatty acids, probiotics, prebiotics and, and antioxidants.
Omega fatty acids help to promote vibrant skin and coat health.
Probiotics, together with prebiotics, help to defend your digestive health.
The Wellness Large Breed Complete Health Adult Deboned Chicken & Brown Rice Recipe Dry Dog Food is the perfect dog food for pet owners with large breed puppies to provide complete nutrition.
If you’re looking for dog food that assures your puppy pooch gets adequate nutrients, you probably just found it.
The Royal Canin Golden Retriever Puppy Breed Specific Dry Dog Food is an exclusive breed-specific diet that is uniquely formulated for your Golden Retriever puppies.
This food comes in a uniquely shaped and textured kibble designed with your Golden’s straight muzzle and scissor bite in mind, making it easy to chew.
It contains an exclusive mix of vitamin E and antioxidants, which help support your pup’s immune system.
Thanks to essential nutrients such as taurine, DHA, and EPA, the health of your pup’s heart is in good hands. It is loaded with borage oil to support the health of your young golden’s skin and.
Also included in this formulation are prebiotics and high-quality proteins for promoting optimal stool quality.
The Royal Canin Golden Retriever Puppy Breed Specific Dry Dog Food is a perfect dog for young golden retrievers from 8 weeks to 15 months old.
If you’re looking for dog food that provides a stable form of natural nutrition to help you thrive for your dog, you just found one.
The Blue Buffalo Life Protection Formula Natural Adult Large Breed Dry Dog Food features high levels of protein and carbohydrates to provide your pup with the perfect nutritional needs and energy.
It contains Omega 3 and 6 fatty acids, which go a long way to keep your pup’s skin and coat healthy.
Also contained herein are BLUE’s exclusive LifeSource Bits, which are packed with carefully selected antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals to support the immune system’s health and promote healthy oxidative balance.
BLUE Life Protection Formula also contains Glucosamine and chondroitin to help support your pup’s joints and promote healthy mobility. It is a priceless benefit for large breeds like retrievers.
The Blue Buffalo Life Protection Formula Natural Adult Large Breed Dry Dog Food is perfect for dog owners looking for the best dog food with the required nutrition to transform their pet’s life.
If what you’re looking for is high-quality dog food with a price tag that won’t break the bank, you should consider the Diamond Naturals Premium Large Breed Formulas Dry Dog Food.
It is one product that prides itself on employing one of the most scientifically advanced food safety protocols.
This dog food is formulated with ingredients of exceptional quality, tailored to the needs of large breeds. It features chicken as the first ingredient, which speaks volumes about the quality of the food.
This product is rich in probiotics to ensure your dog’s digestive health gets optimal support.
Also included are nutrients such as omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids and Glucosamine, and chondroitin to help promote healthy skin and shiny coat and support healthy joints for your furry friend.
You can be sure that there are no fillers, no preservatives, no artificial colors, or flavors.
The Diamond Naturals Premium Large Breed Formulas Dry Dog Food is a perfect food choice for dog owners looking for dog food products that are budget-friendly and still above-average in quality.
If you’re looking for a holistic dry food that promises to provide your canine buddy with the required nutrition to keep them going strong, your search has probably just come to an end.
With lamb as its primary protein source, this superfood goes a long way in promoting the muscle strength of your canine companion.
This Solid Gold Whole Grain Adult Dry Dog Food features a unique and healthy blend of monounsaturated fats such as canola oil, salmon oil, and olive oil for the overall health of your dog’s skin and coat.
Thanks to the functional superfoods featured in this formulation, rich in omegas and living probiotics to help boost your dog’s immune function and improve gut health.
The Solid Gold Whole Grain Adult Dry Dog Food is another perfect choice for dog owners looking for high-quality, low-priced dog food.
PEDIGREE CHOICE CUTS IN GRAVY Adult Canned Wet Dog Food is formulated with healthy nutrients that will not only help your dog grow healthy but happy as well.
It is a meat-first dog food that makes for a delicious taste and vital proteins to give your dog a considerable boost in energy and help build and maintain muscle mass.
This product features gentle carbohydrates to boost the digestive health of the pup.
This food also provides the perfect balance of minerals and oils, which guarantees a glistening coat and healthy skin. Each can of this product is 100% balanced and infused with essential vitamins to help in promoting strong internal systems.
To ensure that your dog gets the most out of this wet dog food, the ingredients are highly digestible and easily absorbed.
The CHOICE CUTS IN GRAVY Adult Canned Wet Dog Food is a perfect dog food choice for fussy eaters.
Canidae is another brand that prides itself on making one of the most nutritious and best dog foods.
The CANIDAE Grain-Free PURE Dry Dog Food is proof of this claim. It is a no-grain dog food product crafted with the health of your canine friend in mind.
It contains zero filler, which makes it ideal for puppies with a sensitive stomach.
As the name suggests, it uses a limited number of easily recognizable wholesome ingredients, with a formulation that caters to the golden retriever of all life stages.
Every kibble is loaded with probiotics to support healthy digestion.
It is also enriched with antioxidants and omega 6 & 3 fatty acids to support a healthy immune system and promote beautiful skin and coat, respectively.
The CANIDAE Grain-Free PURE Dry Dog Food is perfect for dog owners looking for novel kibble recipes that help with their dog’s itchy skin.
Hill science is one company that has done incredibly well with dog food products, and Hill’s Science Diet Healthy Mobility Large Breed Dry Dog Food is not an exception.
This product comes in a unique formulation that provides precise nutrition for large breed dogs in their adulthood.
The center of all nutrients provided is naturally sourced Glucosamine and Chondroitin Sulfate for improved joint health and improved mobility.
This Hill science product also contains omega-6 fatty acids to help nourish the skin and coat of your pup.
Generally, the ingredients used in this winning formula are not just high-quality but easy to digest. Plus, it comes in a kibble size that no doggo would a problem munching on.
The Hill’s Science Diet Healthy Mobility Large Breed Dry Dog Food is perfect for those who desire the best for their pup despite the price tag of the product.
Are you looking for dog food that provides balanced and complete nutrition for the golden’s of all life stages?
Look no further than the Diamond Naturals Skin & Coat Real Salmon and Potato Recipe Dry Dog Food.
This Diamond Naturals product features grain-free kibble and is made with wild-caught salmon; this way, you’re guaranteed optimal amino acid profile to cater for lean, strong muscles.
It is also a great food choice for dogs with food-related skin sensitivities, thanks to its omegas content.
This Diamond Naturals product comes loaded with live probiotics for optimal digestive support and nutrition for your dogs.
It is also loaded with immune-system-supporting antioxidants and essential minerals, and vitamins for your dog’s overall health.
The Diamond Naturals Skin & Coat Real Salmon and Potato Recipe Dry Dog Food are perfect for owners of sensitive pooches of all life stages.
One dog food that promises to get your dog excited about mealtime, bowl after bowl, is the Royal Canin Golden Retriever Adult Dry Dog Food.
This product is scientifically formulated with the nutritional needs of adult purebred Golden Retrievers in mind – particularly 15 months and older.
It comes loaded with precise fat and calorie content to help Golden Retrievers inhibit excessive weight gain and maintain the ideal weight.
It is enriched with essential nutrients sourced from borage oil and fish oil to reinforces the skin barrier and promote a shiny coat and healthy skin.
Also included in this formula are specific nutrients such as vitamins E & C, taurine, arginine, L-carnitine, essential fatty acids, and green tea polyphenols to help protect the heart and promote good cardiac function.
The Royal Canin Golden Retriever Adult Dry Dog Food is perfect for dog owners looking for a diet tailor-made for Golden Retriever Adult dogs.
Best Dog Food for Golden Retrievers Buying Guide
Golden Retrievers Nutritional Needs
Every dog owner will come to understand that not all dogs have the same nutritional needs. You can’t expect a working dog to have the same needs as a housedog.
It is only logical. It is also the reason why all dog foods are not created equal. As such, every dog owner must understand what nutrition and type of diet best suits his/her dog breed.
Let us briefly look into the basic nutritional needs of a golden retriever.
Protein is not only an essential nutrient but the main nutritional requirement for Golden Retrievers. They have several vital functions they perform in the body.
To start with, they help to build and repair muscles and other body tissues. They also help make new skin cells, hormones, and enzymes, grow hair, etc.
Additionally, they are a major energy source for your canine buddy; they help strengthen your dog’s musculoskeletal and immune system.
The recommended sources for your protein are lambs, turkey, chicken, yogurts, fish, cooked eggs, and beef.
For commercial food products, you want to go for foods with a minimum of 30 percent protein content.
Carbohydrates are another alternative energy source for your furry pal as they supply glucose needed for the normal function of organs such as the brain and nervous system.
Even though protein also supplies energy, it is recommended that some amounts of carbohydrates result in your dog’s better functioning.
Feeding carbohydrate also helps to spare protein from been consumed on energy requirements but for other vital functions. Carbohydrates also serve as a source of dietary fiber.
This, in turn, is somewhat important for the health and normal function of the gastrointestinal tract (GI).
Fat is also another main nutritional requirement for your Golden Retriever – second to protein.
More than also contributing to the energy requirement of your dog, they are a critical nutrient for the growth and functioning of the cells, tissues, muscles, and nerves of the body.
Recommended sources of fats, particularly for special treats or homemade diets, include oils such as cod liver oil, sunflower oils, fish oils, and canola oils, and meats.
For commercial foods, on the other hand, you want to go for products with between 12 to 18% fat content, depending on the growth stage of the dog.
The older your golden pal, the lower the quantity of fat required.
Vitamins are also crucial for your dog’s consumption. Vitamins go a long way to help strengthen the bone and teeth of your pet, especially during their growing life stage.
They also contribute to keeping the skin and coat in a healthy condition, help boost your pup’s immune system, speed up fur growth and healing process.
Vitamins to look out for are but are not limited to Vitamins C, A, E, B, K, and D. The various sources of vitamins include spinach, carrots, pumpkin, turnip greens, sweet potatoes, eggs, liver, and fish oil.
Just like vitamins, Golden Retrievers also need foods that supply minerals.
Minerals are helpful in functions such as the formation of bone and cartilage, regulation of fluid balance, production of hormones, transportation of oxygen in the bloodstream, proper functioning of the nerve and muscle.
Minerals to look forward to includes but are not limited to calcium, magnesium, potassium, sodium, phosphorus, iron, and zinc.
The various sources of minerals includes but are not limited to vegetables, molasses, fish, beans, bone meal, and muscle meats.
How Much To Feed Your Golden Retriever
Naturally, Golden Retrievers are a large and energetic dog, and as a result, they have a ravenous appetite and eat a great deal.
It can mislead you into overfeeding them, which can be detrimental to their health. On the other hand, when you skip meals or underfeed your pup, it can cause them not to grow or develop properly.
You must know how to feed your golden retriever. The correct feeding schedule will go a long way to help your pup properly grow and develop and not be hungry at any point during the day.
Generally, the nutritional needs differ according to your dog’s age, activity level, weight, and overall health.
On average, a growing Golden Retriever should be fed between 1-2 cups per day. On the other hand, an adult Golden Retriever should be between 2 and 3 ½ cups of food per day.
And as a rule of thumb, you should feed young growing golden approximately four servings of food daily, and as they attain adulthood, you gradually decrease down to two servings.
How Diet Can Help Health Issues
All dogs have health issues that they are prone to. However, there are particular issues that are prevalent amongst Golden Retrievers more than other breeds.
Let us look at the common health problems to expect from your Golden Retriever.
One of the most common health conditions with golden retrievers is the heart.
One such condition goes by the name aortic stenosis. This disease is characterized by narrowing the aorta, known for carrying blood away from the heart.
It obviously will result in partial obstructions to the flow of blood in the heart of your dog. Your dog will have to work harder for the heart to pump blood.
When allowed to get severe, it may lead to severe tiredness and incessant fainting. Other symptoms to expect are cough and difficulty in breathing.
It can go as far as affecting how well your dog will grow. To help keep this condition in check, you may want to provide your pooch foods with added taurine.
This form of amino acid goes a long way to help in supporting the optimal functioning cardiac system.
Hip and Elbow Dysplasia
This condition describes an unfit of the bones in their sockets and will not rotate smoothly in the socket.
It results in uneven wear of bone and can cause undue stress on the attached ligaments, and the result is an improper formation of the hip and elbow joints.
It can become a serious deformity and develop debilitating and painful if not diagnosed on time and left untreated.
A common symptom of this condition is your dog’s lameness or difficulty in the dog getting up.
To help alleviate or prevent this condition, you may want to feed your dogs with foods rich in nutrients such as calcium, phosphorus, chondroitin, and Glucosamine.
This mix goes a long way to strengthen the joints and bones of your Golden Retriever.
Golden retrievers are known for developing a range of eye conditions – some being hereditary and others developing over time.
Common eye conditions to expect are Retinal Dysplasia (RD) and Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA).
RD refers to abnormal growth and development at the back of your dog’s eye, commonly caused by exposure of the eyes to toxins, infections, and even genetics. The result is a reduced vision.
On the other hand, PRA refers to the degeneration of the retina of your dogs and is commonly inherited. The result is the blindness of the affected dog.
Even though the risk of getting these conditions largely depends on the DNA, diets containing nutrients such as vitamin A, C, and E, antioxidants such as Lutein and Zeaxanthin, omega fatty acids, and zinc may also play a major role.
One condition that has caused the most deaths among golden retrievers, particularly from twelve years of age and over, is cancer.
One of the most common types of cancer to look out for is hemangiosarcoma, a cancer of the blood vessels. Another one is lymphosarcoma and is known as lymphocyte cancer – a type of blood cell.
Other types of cancer worth mentioning are osteosarcoma – cancer associated with the bones. And Mastocytoma – cancer associated with the mast cells in the dog’s skin.
According to some studies on this condition, possible causes are excessive exposure to the sun, smoke, herbicides, pesticides, overweight, overfeeding, etc. Feeding your dog with antioxidant-rich foods will go a long way to help prevent and maintain this condition.
Just like humans, dogs, too, can get an ear infection. However, this condition is more common with dog breeds such as Golden Retriever because of their large, floppy ears.
This vulnerability came from the fact that the inner parts of their ears are not adequately exposed to air. And are likely to accumulate moisture and thus lead to an infection.
Possible signs of ear infections are aggressive shaking and scratching of the ear and strange odor coming out from the ears.
These conditions can be very painful and annoying, and if not detected and treated on time, they can be serious. It is recommended that owners of this dog breed be proactive and regularly clean their dogs’ ears.
It is only natural that since Golden Retrievers have a lot of fur courtesy of their double coat, their skin will be susceptible to many diseases.
It has been observed that around half of Golden Retrievers are likely to develop some sort of skin issues at some point in their life.
These skin conditions are likely to manifest in extremely uncomfortable allergies, flakiness, and itching. It can even go further to causing major infections such as pyoderma.
These conditions can cause a symptom that a serious underlining disease is developing. To help support the health of dog’s skin, you need to provide them with foods rich in EFAs, vitamins, and minerals.
Epilepsy, known as a neurological condition, is also a common health issue in dogs such as Golden Retrievers. This condition is characterized by involuntary seizures or loss of consciousness often.
Unlike humans, epilepsy in dogs doesn’t come with any choking hazard and does not need to put anything in their mouth.
Any dangerous objects around your dog must be cleared away; to avoid chances of them hurting themselves.
They are most likely not to understand what is happening to them, so it is the owner’s place to guide them through these seizures and help them relax.
Grain-Free Diets And Golden Retrievers?
Going with grains remains a preferable choice when it comes to dog foods. It has been observed that different dogs can display various allergies.
A common allergy with dogs is to proteins; however, some have been observed to be allergic to grain, even though rare. In such cases, it is okay to feed them on grain-free dog food.
As much as grain-free dog foods are an excellent option for sensitive dogs, it also comes with its issues.
The FDA investigated a potential dietary link between grain-free diets and a heart condition known as canine dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM) in dogs.
DCM is a condition where the muscles of your dog can no longer pump properly.
The result is weak contractions leading to an enlarged heart chamber, leaked heart valves, and congestive heart failure.
Symptoms in golden retrievers include coughing, fainting, weakness, shortness of breath, an inability to exercise, and lethargy.
It is suggested that this condition regarding grain-free diets has a lot to do with the ingredients and fillers used in replacing the grains in grain-free diets, such as chickpeas or lentils.
These ingredients were discovered to aggravate taurine levels, which is the foundation of this fatal heart condition in dogs. But there’s good news – taurine levels can be boosted with supplements and damage reversed if diagnosed early enough.
Final Words On Best Dog Foods For Golden Retrievers
Your canine friend surely deserves the best possible diet. Outlined above are some of the best dog foods for golden retrievers. It should get you started on finding the right fit for your dog.
As for me, my best overall choice goes to the Wellness Large Breed Complete Health Adult Deboned Chicken & Brown Rice Recipe Dry Dog Food.
As far as dog food goes, this product is loaded with a range of premium ingredients, which provide essential nutrients to help promote the pup’s health.
It is formulated to provide the unique nutritional needs of large dogs like a golden retriever. This Wellness Large Breed dog food is doubtless the way to give your furry pals both what their bodies need and taste buds crave.
I hope that the above guide helps you find the right dog food for your Golden Retriever.
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