Dog Food for Upset and Sensitive Stomachs

If you’ve been following the blog for a while, you’ll know that Nix regularly suffers from stomach issues. She’s been through gastroenteritis, random bouts of vomiting, and several episodes of diarrhoea. She’s recovered mainly by eating special food and sometimes with the help of antibiotics.

In today’s post I’ll talk about the different types of food that have worked well for Nix at one point or another for her stomach issues, and list their ingredients in a table. Bear in mind, though, that I do not recommend feeding these before checking with your vet.

So, without further ado, let’s look at the foods!


First of all, I’ll talk about kibble. Most of the time they come in small and large bags. It’s much cheaper to get the large bag if your dog is going to be eating it for a while. Their cost depends on where you get them, but they go for around € 60 the 12 kg bag. Not the cheapest kibble ever, as you can see.

Royal Canin veterinary Gastro Intestinal Junior

Nix ate this kibble back in January or February this year. I think she started eating it due to a bout of diarrhoea she had back then. After finishing the bag, we went back to a standard kibble. You can get more info on the kibble here.

The main difference between this kibble and the others mentioned in this post is that this one is formulated for puppies or junior dogs.

The ingredients are:

Main ingredients Rice, Dehydrated Poultry Protein
Secondary ingredients Animal Fats, Maize, Dehydrated Pork Protein
Other ingredients Wheat gluten, hydrolysed animal proteins, beet pulp, minerals, egg powder, soya oil, fish oil, yeasts, psyllium husks and seeds, fructo-oligo-saccharides, hydrolysed yeast (source of manno-oligo-saccharides), marigold extract (source of lutein).
Purpose For gastro intestinal disorders
Advance veterinary diets Gastroenteric Low Fat

Nix has eaten this kibble at least twice. I don’t remember exactly what happened the first time, but the vet told us to give it to her again last June, when she went through a diarrhoea stage. Back then she had really soft stool. We waited before going to the vet because she seemed fine and we were hoping it would be caused by something she had eaten. As the problem didn’t solve itself, the vet recommended feeding her this. You can check the official website here.

This kibble solved the problem pretty fast, as far as I can remember. Initially she only ate this, and then we slowly reintroduced standard kibble. In September she was eating half of a standard kibble and half of this. Unfortunately, one day she got awful diarrhoea and she needed to go out every two hours. As this lasted for almost three days, we went to the vet and he changed her food again. He explained that dogs with sensitive stomachs either respond to this kibble (low fat and easy to digest) or kibbles with lots of fibre in them (such as de Diabetes Colitis mentioned below). It’s possible that she belongs in the second group.

The ingredients are:

Main ingredients Rice, Maize, Maize gluten flour
Secondary ingredients Dehydrated poultry proteins
Other ingredients Coconut oil, animal fat, hydrolyzed animal proteins, hydrolyzed soy protein, plasma proteins calcium carbonate, monocalcium phosphate, yeast, potassium chloride, fish oil, fructooligosaccharides (FOS), vegetable fiber, sepiolite.
Purpose For gastro intestinal disorders, such as diarrhoea, gastritis, inflammatory bowel disease or pancreatitis, to mention a few.
Advance veterinary diets Diabetes Colitis

This is the kibble that the vet recommended after the Gastroenteric Low Fat failed us three months after starting feeding it. In about 24 hours (Nix was also taking antibiotics) we saw an improvement. It wasn’t the first time though that she was eating this food, she had already had before during one of her upset stomach episodes.

Unfortunately, there is no website in English for this kibble, although it’s sold in the UK. You can find the link in Spanish here. Or, if you prefer, there is a YouTube video in English.

The ingredients are:

Main ingredients Maize, Dehydrated poultry proteins
Secondary ingredients   Beetroot pulp, Maize gluten flour, Barley,
Other ingredients Animal fat, pea fibre, hydrolyzed animal protein, calcium fosfate, potassium chloride, fish oil, salt
Purpose For diabetes, constipation, colitis that responds well to fibre, diarrhoea or dogs who have a tendency to obesity, among others.

By the way, with this kibble, the dog’s stools become huge and more frequent.

Canned Food

We don’t usually feed Nix canned food as, from what I know, in general it has pretty bad quality and the good ones are very expensive. However, we’ve given her one type of canned food for digestive disorders, the Hill’s I/D formula.

Hill’s Prescription diet Digestive Care I/D

The first time we gave Nix the Hill’s I/D canned food was when she had gastroenteritis, in December last year. She tolerated it really well and helped her lot in her recovery, so since then we’ve tried to keep at least one can of the food at home in case we needed it. Every time that we’ve given it to her her stomach issues have improved. The only exception was last time, when she had the strong bout of diarrhoea.

You can read more about the product here.

The ingredients are:

Main ingredients Turkey, Pork liver, Rice
Secondary ingredients Rice starch, Maize, Dried Egg
Other ingredients Chicken, dried beet pulp, minerals, cellulose, flaxseed, psyllium, vitamins and trace elements. Coloured with natural caramel.
Purpose For gastro intestinal disorders, such as diarrhoea, gastritis, inflammatory bowel disease or pancreatitis, to mention a few.

Having a dog who suffers from digestive issues is hard. As you can see from the post, Nix has tried a great number of different foods, and these are just the ones specific for dogs with issues. She’s also tried many different standard foods.

Truth be told, I don’t particularly like the ingredients in any of these. I distrust things with generic names, such as “animal fat” or “turkey”, as I don’t know exactly which fats are there or what parts of the turkey. Moreover, the first ingredient in the kibbles is always maize or rice which, from what I’ve read, are not the best if we try to feed our dogs a more natural diet. However, it could be the case that these ingredients to help the dog recover his digestive function.

Having said that, I would also like to make clear that these foods, despite the ingredients, have really worked and helped Nix recover when she was going through periods of vomiting or diarrhoea.

Therefore, I would recommend feeding these foods when your dog really needs them and your veterinarian advises you to. Otherwise, I would turn to other foods such as Acana or Orijen.


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