Dogs need a complete and balanced diet to stay healthy. Although a non-essential amino acid, taurine plays an important role in the overall health of a canine. Taurine is much-needed for eye and heart health, bile production, and reproduction, among others. And what’s the best way to add taurine to your dog’s diet than the best dog food with taurine? In this post, I reviewed three of my best picks with a healthy dose of taurine and clean formula.
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Why does my dog need taurine?
Taurine is an amino acid that’s more concentrated in the eyes, heart, and brain. This can be sourced from meat products, specifically dark meat and shellfish. Take note that taurine needs carnitine to reach the heart properly. It’s the reason why these two compounds go hand in hand.
While taurine is considered a non-essential amino acid, some dogs need an extra dose to stay healthy. Healthy canines typically don’t need an added amount of taurine on their food.
However, very low levels of taurine in the body will cause dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM) in dogs. The taurine deficiency will result in the thinning of heart muscles as well as the enlargement of the heart chambers.
Breeds like Golden Retriever, Cocker Spaniel, Irish Wolfhounds, and Newfoundlands are some of the dogs that are prone to DCM.
Take note that taurine deficiency can be difficult to detect. Veterinarians have to run several tests like urinalysis, complete blood count (CBC), and biochemical profile.
Before your dog suffers from this condition, it’s important to supply it with a decent amount of taurine. There’s no need to go overboard so a dog food product with added taurine should suffice. Below, I reviewed three of the best picks.
3 Best Dog Food with Taurine
OUR #1 CHOICE
[su_service title=”Wellness Core Natural Reduced Fat Dog Food” icon=”icon: star” icon_color=”#2D3092″ size=”32″ class=””][/su_service]
Another dog food with taurine that I recommend is the Wellness Core Natural Reduced Fat Dog Food. Deboned turkey is its main ingredient together with turkey meal and chicken meal. For added nourishment, this is also packed with salmon oil, flaxseed, spinach, kale, parsley, apple, blueberries, and other superfoods.
In addition, this dog food has 33% protein, 10% fat, 8.5% fiber, and 0.20% taurine. This Wellness Core dog food also contains glucosamine, chondroitin, Omega fatty acids, Vitamin A, Vitamin E, calcium, and phosphorus.
Moreover, this dog food is grain-free to reduce the possibility of allergic reactions. Overall, this formula helps build leaner muscles, promote better digestion, and ease coat problems. Its taurine content will also keep your dog’s eyes, heart, and whole body health in check.
Although Wellness Core doesn’t market it as such, I noticed that this food helped fix one of my dog’s anal gland problems. There are no more stinky leaks that I have to deal with. It also seems to help with hotspots, especially for double-coated doggos.
I also want to highlight the low-fat content, which is perfect for canines that need to lose weight. I just wish that they will improve the kibble shape, but my dog doesn’t find it a problem at all.
For this quality, I’m quite surprised by the low price. My Goldie loves it and he’s no longer stealing my other canine’s food.
[su_service title=”The Honest Kitchen Human Grade Whole Grain Dog Food” icon=”icon: star” icon_color=”#2D3092″ size=”32″ class=””][/su_service]
My last pick for this roundup is The Honest Kitchen Human-Grade Dog Food. This is a dehydrated dog food so it’s minimally processed, easy to digest, and contains concentrated nutrition. You only need to add warm water and stir! With this, the 10 lb. box can make 40 lbs. of food.
This formula is available in chicken, beef, turkey, and wild-caught fish. The dogs in the shelter where I volunteer loves turkey more.
True enough, this is made of dehydrated turkey as the first ingredient. It’s followed by oats, potatoes, flaxseed, carrots, cabbage, apple, honey, and kelp. With this, the dog food has 22% protein, 15% fat, and 5% fiber. It’s paired with 0.15% taurine for overall nourishment.
Moreover, this dog food is complete and balanced based on the recommended standards of the Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO).
Overall, I like that it’s contained in a box instead of a plastic bag. Also, all the plant ingredients are organic and minimally processed to retain their nutritional value. This Honest Kitchen dog food doesn’t have by-products, either, which ensures that every bite delivers topnotch nourishment.
Once you’ve put warm water on it, the food really smells like turkey. Dogs in the shelter can’t get enough of it and they seem to be doing well.
How to choose the best dog food with taurine
When it comes to dog food, you have to be very meticulous with your options. You should consider the following before purchasing any product:
🐶Check the ingredients
The first thing you should do is read the ingredients list of the dog food product. Make sure that the first ingredient is animal meat. This ensures that your dog will receive ample taurine as well as protein and minerals.
As much as possible, avoid dog food products with too many by-products. While by-products have some nutrition, it’s not as high-quality as premium meat cuts.
Also, you should never feed your dog with food mixed with artificial flavoring, coloring, and preservatives. Natural and organic are always the best options.
🐶Dry vs wet food
Next, decide whether you want dry or wet food for your dog. Wet food has added moisture and tends to appeal to some picky eaters. However, it has lower protein content and a pain to store since it’s prone to spoilage.
On the other hand, dry food is easy to serve and store. Also, most dogs love the crunch and flavor of fresh kibble. Aside from that, dry food helps reduce tartar buildup on your dog’s teeth.
In the end, your choice depends on what works for your canine.
🐶Grain-free or not?
Grain-free dog food products are popular nowadays. It’s ideal for canines with extreme allergies to grains like soy, corn, and wheat. Still, not all grains are bad. Brown rice is actually a good source of energy and minerals. You just have to consider the needs of your dog before deciding which dog food product you’ll get.
🐶Pick the right flavor
The flavor of the dog food is often a make-or-break part. No matter how nutritious the formula is, your dog will not eat it unless it appeals to their sense of smell and taste.
This is why real meat is very important in the ingredients list. It provides a natural flavor and odor without the frills. Unlike plant ingredients, dogs are more attracted to animal meat since it’s their diet in the wild.
🐶Match with the right life stage
Some dog food products are made to suit across life stages. Still, it’s important to check this part to ensure that your pet is receiving the nutrition suitable for its age.
Dog food for puppies often has higher protein content to support their growing bodies. Meanwhile, adult dog food has lower protein content but with a proper fat ratio to prevent obesity. Lastly, dog food products for senior canines have a much lower protein content but with added supplements to support their deteriorating health.
🐶Check the nutritional profile
It’s also important to check how much protein, fat, calories, and more are in the dog food product. This way, you can serve the right amount per meal. It will also prevent obesity in canines. And for dogs with kidney problems, it’s critical for them to eat low-protein meals as advised by the vet.
For taurine, most dogs will thrive in 0.15 to 0.20%. Besides, they don’t need very high levels of this amino acid. Aside from taurine, dog food should be balanced with vitamins and minerals.
🐶Consult with the vet
As mentioned above, it’s important to consult the vet whenever you’re planning to transition your dog to a new food. This is even more important for canines with metabolic issues like diabetes. These health problems will largely affect your choice of food for the canine as well as the ingredients the dog can eat.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Can dogs overdose with taurine?
A: Dogs don’t need large amounts of taurine so there’s really no need to supplement or provide too much. Nevertheless, most dogs can tolerate higher than normal amounts of taurine. However, some may experience vomiting, diarrhea, and more. Take note that dogs with kidney problems shouldn’t be given large doses of taurine.
Q: Can dogs take human taurine supplements?
A: No, giving your dog any human supplements will only expose it to various health risks. If you want to give your pooch an added dose of taurine, you should look for the best dog food with taurine instead. This is safer and formulated specifically for canines.
Q: What is a good source of taurine for dogs?
A: Taurine is generally found on animal meat parts. The most taurine-rich cuts are the heart and tongue. Seafood is also an excellent source of taurine as well as eggs. However, for taurine to be absorbed by the body, you should pair it with carnitine. Seafood usually has both.
Q: Can taurine reverse cardiomyopathy in dogs?
A: Cardiomyopathy in dogs is potentially reversible, but it takes more than taurine to do that. If you suspect that your doggo is suffering from this condition, it’s best to bring it to the vet. The veterinarian will perform the proper diagnosis and the right treatment based on your pet’s overall health condition.
Q: What blocks taurine absorption?
A: High-protein legumes with no taurine content actually blocks the absorption of taurine in the dog’s body. This is why you should only give your pooch a meat-based diet. Nevertheless, a small amount of legumes isn’t really bad as long as it’s not the main ingredient of the dog food.
The best dog food with taurine will keep your canine’s heart, eyes, and brain health in check. Aside from taurine, the food product should also have healthy ingredients, vitamins, and minerals. This will ensure that your pooch receives ample nutrition on every bite.
What do you think of the dog food products here? Let us know below!