Dogs with Tummy Trouble – Foods For Sensitive Stomachs

Figuring out that your dog has a sensitive stomach is frustrating. Their digestive systems become irritated, resulting in diarrhea and gas.

Some dogs may even be in pain, but they are unable to tell us.

Determining the cause is an arduous process – one that we’ve journeyed on with our Labradoodle.

  1. Switch Foods Slowly
    Changing their diet every few days won’t help. Introduce new foods slowly, and monitor the response.
  2. Start Eliminating the Common Irritants
    Soy, Corn, and Gluten are commonly found in many dog foods. Grain is a popular ‘filler’.
  3. Keep a Food Journal
    Write in a journal or calendar – each days food, and take note of stool consistency and any other issues.
  4. Keep a Close Eye
    Some dogs will eat anything, and you can’t monitor them 24/7. Have they had access to rubbish, or other dodgy things?
  5. Experiment With a Limited Ingredient Food
    We cover limited ingredient foods here.

We’ve selected some of the best foods here. It’s not always about the ingredients list, but how it affects your dog. These foods are more expensive, but research shows we’re willing to pay for it.

It’s worth checking FDA pet food recalls page (when companies have messed up).

Dog Foods For Sensitive Stomachs

1. Nature’s Variety Instinct Limited Ingredient

Nature’s Variety has greatly improved their formula, focusing on a single protein in each food. This allows you to eliminate all other ingredients and irritants.

There is no potato, eggs, dairy, corn or wheat in their formulas.

There are 4 varieties: salmon, duck, lamb, and turkey (when available)

(Discounted at Amazon).

2. NomNomNow – Fresh Food Delivered

This isn’t your standard dry kibble, but fresh-prepared real food.

We make our dogs fresh food at home, but NomNomNow is a great alternative.

It’s a subscription plan where pouches of fresh food are delivered to you. It’s not cheap ($21+ a week), but this is the ‘cleanest’ food you’ll find.

Recipes include: Turkey Fare, Heartland Beef Mash, Chicken Chow-wow, Porkalicious Potluck… they are a single protein with a selection of cooked vegetables.

See more at NomNomNow

3. Royal Canin Gastrointestinal


We use Royal Canin with our dog. This was due to a vet recommendation (and what they had on the shelves).

It seems to have helped minimized some of his symptoms, but he still has flare ups, that are difficult to diagnose.

It is expensive for sure (but we supplement with homecooked food).

This formula is low-fiber, with easily digestible protein. Often used for dogs with known digestive issues.

(Available at Amazon)

4. Wellness Simple


What I like about the Wellness system is that they have a wide variety of foods to choose from.  So you might opt for “Salmon and Potato” formula.  If that doesn’t work, you can try their “Duck and Oatmeal”.

Each formula has a single protein, and is grain free.

(Available at Amazon)

5. Natural Balance


The sweet potato and fish formula is a good place to start, as fish is often something new to the dog.

Natural Balance have a selection of limited ingredient foods. The product maintains consistently strong reviews and ratings – particularly with picky eaters.

(Available at Amazon)

6. Science Diet – Sensitive Stomach and Skin


Hill’s Science Diet has copped its fair share of criticism. Mainly due to its strong product placement among vet practices.

However this formulation has worked for many people with troubled dogs. Often it’s a matter of trying different foods until you hit the right one.

(Available at Amazon)

Finding the right diet for your dog’s stomach issues is difficult.

Because our dogs cannot tell us how they are feeling, we are left with any number of indicators that something in their diet is afflicting them.

Any of the following might indicate something that can be managed with diet:

  • Itchy ears
  • Itchy paws
  • Straining when doing poos.
  • Poorly formed stools (or color)
  • Diarrhea
  • Vomiting
Sometimes with our dog, we can tell that his fur just looks “off”. It doesn’t have its normal shine. Typically he is having tummy troubles at this time.