2020 Best Dog Food For Firm Stools (Top 10 Reviews)

Mike PowellEdited by: Mike Powell
Abby TexasReviewed by: Abby Texas

Last Update:

Nothing tests the love we have for our dogs like having to clean up a messy poop!

Loose stools are not a problem if they happen once in a while. But when it becomes an everyday thing, something needs to be done. Your dog’s poop should be firm, and if it isn’t that way most of the time it might be time for a checkup.

The first step is feeding your pup one of the best dog food for firm stools. We’ve put together a list of the dog foods with the highest digestibility, to help with your pup’s digestive system.

Rank
Ranked #1
Ranked #2
Ranked #3
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Blue Buffalo Wilderness High Protein, Natural Adult Dry Dog Food, Chicken 24-lb
Stella & Chewy's Freeze-Dried Raw Stella's Super Beef Dinner Patties Dog Food, 25 oz. Bag
Diamond Naturals Dry Food for Adult Dog, Beef and Rice Formula, 40 Pound Bag (074198608331)
Pro 1
LifeSource Bits add vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants
Highly digestible raw ingredients
Good fiber level (3.5%)
Pro 2
Chelated minerals and probiotics for easier digestion
High in protein and with moderate fiber
Added probiotics, contains joint supplements
Best Overall
Rank
Ranked #1
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Blue Buffalo Wilderness High Protein, Natural Adult Dry Dog Food, Chicken 24-lb
Pro 1
LifeSource Bits add vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants
Pro 2
Chelated minerals and probiotics for easier digestion
Custom Button
Premium Option
Rank
Ranked #2
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Stella & Chewy's Freeze-Dried Raw Stella's Super Beef Dinner Patties Dog Food, 25 oz. Bag
Pro 1
Highly digestible raw ingredients
Pro 2
High in protein and with moderate fiber
Custom Button
Best Value For Money
Rank
Ranked #3
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Diamond Naturals Dry Food for Adult Dog, Beef and Rice Formula, 40 Pound Bag (074198608331)
Pro 1
Good fiber level (3.5%)
Pro 2
Added probiotics, contains joint supplements
Custom Button
Sources researched
12
Sources researched
Customer reviews
17,650
Customer reviews
Hours spent testing
12
Hours spent testing
Products tested
12
Products tested

Best Dog Food For Firm Stools in 2020

Blue Buffalo Wilderness High Protein, Natural Adult Dry Dog Food

Best Overall

Overall Score85%
Digestibility90%
Fiber Content80%
Fat Count85%
Probiotics & Prebiotics85%
Affordability85%

PROS

  • Chelated minerals and probiotics for easier digestion 
  • Glucosamine for joint support 
  • LifeSource Bits add vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants 
  • Three flavors available

CONS

  • Slightly pricey option

Large breed dogs need specific levels of calcium and phosphorus, as well as extra joint support. This food contains everything a big fella would need to be healthy and have firm poop! 

It’s important to feed a large breed dog a kibble that’s created especially for them. Small or medium breed foods just don’t quite have what the big guys and girls need, so if you have a large breed who needs a poop remedy, we can recommend this kibble.

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Packed with Healthy Stuff 

A premium quality, grain-free ingredient list including wholesome, real foods is complemented by a full house of supplements to keep your big guy or girl happy and as healthy as possible. 

One of the things that’s essential in a large breed kibble is a good calcium/phosphorus ratio. Large breeds have the tendency to grow too quickly if their calcium intake isn’t regulated, and this can lead to weak and brittle bones in later life. This kibble has the perfect calcium/phosphorus ratio for your dog’s bones. 

There’s also a nice glucosamine level, and good Omegas, as well as Blue Buffalo’s well-known LifeSource Bits for a healthier disposition.

Stella & Chewy’s Freeze-Dried Raw Dinner Patties

Premium Option

Overall Score90%
Digestibility90%
Fiber Content90%
Fat Count90%
Probiotics & Prebiotics90%
Affordability90%

PROS

  • Highly digestible raw ingredients 
  • Variety of flavors 
  • High in protein and with moderate fiber 
  • Minimally processed

CONS

  • Every flavor is high in fat, so if your dog’s loose stools don’t get better that could be why

If you want to feed your dog a raw diet, Stella and Chewy’s is a good place to start. Raw ingredients are quite easy to digest, but if your pup’s stool doesn’t improve these patties could be too high in fat for them. 

We’d suggest these as a fantastic choice for working dogs or hunting dogs who spend a large amount of time being active and burning off that extra fat. 

Although it’s highly digestible, seniors and more chilled out pups may pack on the pounds if they don’t get enough exercise!

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Various Recipes, High Fat Counts 

Choose the protein your dog likes but be aware that the protein and fat counts differ on each recipe. They’re all high, though, so it’s best to test this out for a week or so before deciding to switch completely. 

Considering a high fat count can sometimes aggravate a sensitive stomach and make excessive pooping worse, you’ll need to pay careful attention to your dog. If their loose stool problem gets worse, this food may not be for them! 

They’re fairly limited ingredient, so there’s little chance of allergies or intolerances. There are also a few different flavors to choose from, if your pooch has sensitivities to one particular protein.

Diamond Naturals Dry Dog Food for Adult Dog

Best Value For Money

Overall Score90%
Digestibility90%
Fiber Content90%
Fat Count85%
Probiotics & Prebiotics90%
Affordability95%

PROS

  • Affordable (less than a dollar per pound of food) 
  • Good fiber level (3.5%) 
  • Added probiotics 
  • Contains joint supplements

CONS

  • No flavor varieties

Pet parents looking for a dog food that won’t break the bank, this is our budget pick as the best dog food to firm up loose stools. 

At less than a dollar per pound of kibble, this is the absolute best dog food for its price. It’s also a great food for firm stools thanks to its digestibility and superfood ingredient list.

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Nutrition for Firm Stools 

25% protein and 15% fat are good for most dogs who need food for soft stool firming. The fiber content is nice at 3.5%. 

It also contains high levels of Omega fatty acids, joint supplements, and plenty of antioxidants to boost the immune system, so dogs of all sizes and ages can benefit from it. 

Now onto the firm stool-promoting ingredients! This dog food contains certain superfood ingredients that are not only easily digestible, but also give the body a nice dose of vitamins and minerals. 

The fruits and vegetables provide a good mix of soluble and insoluble fiber, and Diamond Naturals’ K9 Strain Probitiocs are specifically formulated to ease digestion and improve a loose stool problem.

American Journey Grain Free Salmon & Sweet Potato Recipe Grain-Free Dry Dog Food

Premium Option

american-journey-salmon-1
Overall Score88%
Digestibility90%
Fiber Content85%
Fat Count90%
Probiotics & Prebiotics85%
Affordability90%

PROS

  • High in protein but moderate in fat 
  • Contains DHA 
  • Contains glucosamine 
  • Easily digestible ingredients

CONS

  • Slightly high in calories

This is our first choice as best dog food for firm stools. We do recommend making sure that your dog gets some exercise because it has a high protein count, at 32%. Active dogs will have no problem metabolizing this kibble, but those who get less physical activity run the risk of packing on some extra weight!

Sweet potatoes are a great source of easily digestible carbs, and chickpeas are high in fiber, which will help to bulk your dog’s poop up quite a bit.

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Suitable for All Dogs 

The beauty of this dog food is that it’s suitable for adults, puppies, and seniors, small and large breeds. 

The fat count is 14%, which is moderate enough to help firm stools but high enough to give dogs enough energy. 

It contains DHA, which is necessary for puppies but helpful for adults and seniors too. Joint supplements make it great for dogs who are prone to joint dysplasia. 

There are also high levels of Omega fatty acids, which will give any dog a bit of a skin and coat boost. Another nice ingredient to see is kelp, which helps prevent hypothyroidism.

The Honest Kitchen Human Grade Dehydrated Grain Free Dog Food

Best for Sensitive Stomach

Overall Score85%
Digestibility95%
Fiber Content85%
Fat Count85%
Probiotics & Prebiotics75%
Affordability85%

PROS

  • Human grade food 
  • Increases water consumption 
  • Contains chelated minerals to help digestion 
  • Various recipes available

CONS

  • No added probiotics or prebiotics

If your pup has a sensitive stomach and needs some help firming up their poop, this is a great choice. It’s human-grade, so you know your dog is getting quality food. 

It’s also a super choice for older pups who can’t really chew kibble anymore, or for dogs who have had surgery on their mouth and need a soft diet for a while.

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Variety of Recipes 

You (or your pooch) can choose from beef, chicken, turkey, or seafood recipes. The fat counts vary depending on the recipe, so it’s easy to find a food to suit your pet’s tastes and stomach. 

Each one of these formulas is grain-free. If you want something that does contain grains to help add a touch more fiber to your pup’s diet, they have recipes containing grains too. 

Each recipe contains dehydrated ingredients, which mean they’re well-preserved without the need for any artificial or synthetic preservative. 

Surprisingly, the beef and turkey flavors also contain DHA, and EPA, which will give your dog a nice little brain and eye boost. 

Add water and serve – it’s a fantastic way to add some extra moisture to your pup’s diet too!

Wellness Small Breed Complete Health Dry Dog Food

Best For Small Breeds

Overall Score86%
Digestibility90%
Fiber Content85%
Fat Count90%
Probiotics & Prebiotics85%
Affordability80%

PROS

  • Specially formulated for small breeds 
  • Good fat level for small breeds with loose stools 
  • High in Omega fatty acids 
  • Contains joint supplements

CONS

  • No flavor variations

Small breeds have some specific nutritional requirements, and choosing a food for loose stools for a little dog should meet those needs. This is our choice! 

As its name suggests, it’s all about your little dog’s wellness! You’ll notice that this kibble does contain grains, but they’re the good kind – oatmeal, brown rice, and barley. The important thing is that they’re free from gluten, and they’ll help immensely to bulk up your little pup’s stool.

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Small Breed Nutrition 

Wholesome ingredients in a small-bite kibble size make this great for the littlies. It’s loaded with everything a small breed dog needs, including a health fat count of 15%, which will keep their energy up but not contribute to loose stool. 

There’s enough glucosamine and chondroitin to keep those little joints stable, and a nice addition of beta carotene, which is an antioxidant and full of vitamin A. 

The Omegas in this kibble are fairly high in comparison to many others. This not only gives your pup’s coat a shine and keeps their skin moisturized, but it helps the digestive process too. 

The small-bite pellet size also means that those little jaws won’t have any trouble crunching on it.

Merrick Senior Grain Free Dry Dog Food

Best For Seniors

Overall Score87%
Digestibility90%
Fiber Content90%
Fat Count90%
Probiotics & Prebiotics80%
Affordability85%

PROS

  • Lower in fat but remains high in protein 
  • Good fiber content (3.5%) 
  • Joint supplements for aging joints 
  • L-carnitine for energy regulation

CONS

  • Slightly pricey

If you have a senior dog who needs a food for loose stool problems, this one could be helpful. It’s created specifically for seniors, and is made up of high-quality ingredients to help firm stools and reduce messy poop, which can be more prevalent in senior dogs. 

It contains just about everything an older dog might need to stay healthy and strong as they age. This kibble does more than just help with poop! It boosts the immune system and helps keep the body going like when your pooch was young!

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Senior-Specific Nutrition 

This is best for seniors who are still fairly active, as the protein count is at 30%, with a good fat count of 12%. 

A fiber count of 3.5% is right where it should be to help improve dog loose stool problems. You’ll also find pretty decent levels of Omegas, which aid in digestion and keep the brain sharp and coat silky. 

Glucosamine and chondroitin and a nice dose of L-carnitine make this a well-rounded dog food.

Blue Buffalo Natural Veterinary Diet GI Gastrointestinal Support Dry Dog Food

Best Prescription Food

Overall Score86%
Digestibility90%
Fiber Content85%
Fat Count90%
Probiotics & Prebiotics85%
Affordability80%

PROS

  • Highly digestible ingredients 
  • Rich in antioxidants 
  • Added probiotics 
  • Low in fat and moderate in fiber

CONS

  • Pricey and requires a vet’s prescription

If you’re looking for the best dog food that’s vet recommended to make sure your dog’s loose stool problems improve, this one is our top choice. 

Sometimes a dog’s poop problems can be severe enough to need a kibble prescribed by a vet. If this is the case with your pup, we recommend asking your dog’s vet to prescribe this one.

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Designed for Gastrointestinal Support 

You won’t be able to just buy this at any pet store. You’ll need a vet’s prescription for it, but it’s among the best dog food for loose stools you can buy. 

It’s easy to digest, contains good fiber, and is packed with antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals. It’s also suitable for all life stages. 

Unlike many “prescription diets”, there’s no wheat, soy, or corn in this kibble. It can be easy to fall for those words on a package and assume that it means a better quality diet, but the reality is that many prescription foods are just not as healthy as one may think. 

That’s why we recommend Blue Buffalo’s offering. You’ll never find gluten, artificial ingredients, or by-products in their food. If you need a vet-recommended diet, we highly suggest choosing this one!

American Journey Active Life Formula Puppy

Best For Puppies

Overall Score86%
Digestibility90%
Fiber Content85%
Fat Count85%
Probiotics & Prebiotics80%
Affordability90%

PROS

  • Contains DHA and ARA 
  • Good protein and fat counts for puppies 
  • Added joint supplements 
  • Good calcium/phosphorus ratio

CONS

  • No added probiotics and prebiotics

Puppies also need particular nutrition, even if they need a food for loose stools. It’s not common for a puppy to have chronic poop problems, but they’re also curious and fearless, so it’s entirely possible that they may end up chewing on many things they shouldn’t, which can definitely affect their tummies! 

This kibble does the job well, and lacks nothing. American Journey does have other flavors, too, so if your puppy doesn’t respond well to one recipe, simply choose another. They’re all super healthy!

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Puppy Food 

Highly digestible and with good protein and fat levels, this food will suit any puppy. It contains all a puppy needs, including DHA, glucosamine, and added vitamins and minerals. 

There are grains in this recipe, but they’re the good kind! The only possible exception is brewer’s rice, which is sometimes considered to be a lower quality ingredient, but considering the calibre of the other ingredients in this food, we can’t say it’s anything bad. 

Apart from the healthy grains, there’s a nice mix of proteins, and some superfood ingredients like cranberries, blueberries, and kelp that will give your puppy’s immune system a boost right from the start.

Acana Singles Range

Best Limited Ingredient

Overall Score84%
Digestibility90%
Fiber Content85%
Fat Count80%
Probiotics & Prebiotics85%
Affordability80%

PROS

  • 5 flavors available 
  • Single source protein 
  • Grain free 
  • Enriched with vitamins and minerals

CONS

  • Fat count may be too high for some dogs

A limited ingredient diet could help reduce poop and firm up your pup’s stool nicely by reducing the chance of food allergies. This range is suitable for dogs of all life stages and breeds, because every recipe is packed full of health-promoting stuff.

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Range of Recipes 

Five different recipes mean that whichever proteins your dog is sensitive to can be easily avoided. The protein and fat counts remain the same across the recipes, at 31% and 17% respectively. 

17% fat is still decent, but some  dogs may find this to be too high to help their stool issues. It’s best to do a trial run to see if this food helps before going all in and committing to changing your pup’s food forever. 

You’ll find DHA, EPA, 5% fiber, a good calcium/phosphorus ratio, glucosamine, and lower than average but acceptable Omegas. 

Each recipe has a single protein source so it’s easy to avoid anything that may be problematic. They’ve also removed peas from their recipes, so it only contains high-quality, high-fiber ingredients.


Testing Protocol & Criteria Used For Evaluation

Criteria #1: Digestibility

Digestibility refers to the food’s ability to provide easy-to-absorb nutrients to your dog’s body. If your dog’s system has to work extra hard to eke out the nutrients in its food, it’s not worth feeding to them! 

The best dog food for firm stools should have a digestibility score of 82% or more. We’ve done the research for you, and made sure that all the dog foods we’ve chosen have a digestibility rating of 82% or above

Muscle and organ meats, fruits and vegetables, and chelated minerals are all things that increase  a food’s digestibility. Grains are considered to be of low digestibility, so we’ve tried to avoid them as far as possible, as well as corn, wheat, and soy.

Criteria #2: Fiber Content

Fiber is essential for firm stools. It can help reduce diarrhea and runny poop by soaking up excess water in your dog’s system. 

Although it’s tempting to go high-fiber, it’s much more effective to stick to a dog food with moderate fiber, around 2 – 4%. 

We’ve made sure the dog foods we’ve chosen for this list contain good fiber counts and come from great sources. We’ve tried to avoid grains as much as possible, but fruits and vegetables are wonderful sources of healthy fiber.

Criteria #3: Fat Count

Fat is what dogs use for energy. It’s especially essential for working dogs and hunting dogs, and pups who get plenty of exercise will need more fat than inactive or lazier dogs. 

But fat is the enemy of firm stools! Too much fat in a dog’s diet can contribute to a loose dog stool problem. It goes without saying, then, that a high-fat food is not the best dog food for a dog with loose stools! 

We’ve got a variety of fat counts in these foods, so there’s something for every type of dog. We’ve also made sure that they come from great, healthy sources.

Criteria #4: Probiotics and Prebiotics

Probiotics are live bacteria in your dog’s gut. They’re super helpful for keeping the digestion process smooth and easy, and although it may sound weird, they’re an essential part of having a healthy dog. 

Prebiotics are plant fibers that probiotics feed on! These strengthen the bacteria and make sure they can keep doing their job in your dog’s digestive system. 

We’ve tried to find foods that have added probiotics and prebiotics to add a little extra boost to your dog’s body and digestive process. Although these bacteria occur naturally in your dog’s body, more of them can only help!

Criteria #5: Affordability

Affordability is always a consideration. Being on a budget doesn’t have to mean that your dog gets subpar food. If you look at dog foods available today, it can seem like a no-brainer to choose the lower priced foods over the exorbitant ones. 

But the fact is, many commercial dog foods include low-quality filler ingredients that are actually bad for your dog. 

Thankfully, there are some great quality dog foods out there that don’t cost an arm and a leg and will improve your dog’s health. 

Our Best Value for Money option is for the pet parents on a budget. It may not quite suit your dog, but it shows that there are options out there that won’t set you back too much every month. 


Questions & Answers

What can cause loose stools?

Loose, runny stools or diarrhea can be caused by a number of things. Sometimes, it will be a one-time thing, but when it becomes a chronic thing is when you may want to look at changing your dog’s diet. 

Some common causes of loose stools  and diarrhea include: 

  • Something your dog ate in the garden. 
  • An allergy to their own dog food. 
  • Human food
  • Bacterial infection. 
  • Stress caused by a change of environment or routine.

When should I be worried?

The occasional runny stool or bout of diarrhea and vomiting is as normal for dogs as it is for us. Most of the time, they get past it and carry on, as healthy as they were before. 

In some cases, though, there may be cause for concern. Excessive diarrhea can lead to dehydration, weakness, and internal injury, as well as leading to anal gland problems

You should get in touch with a vet if: 

  • Your dog’s diarrhea is chronic. 
  • It’s been going on for 2 days or longer. 
  • There’s blood in your pup’s stool. 
  • Your dog seems to be in pain. 

Your dog is bloated (especially dangerous in large, deep-chested dogs).

What should I look for in the best dog food for firm stools?

The best dog food for firm stools has some specific qualities. Look for: 

  • High-quality, all-natural ingredients. 
  • Premium quality protein as the first ingredient. 
  • Fruits and vegetables. 
  • A moderate fat count (10 – 15%). 
  • Probiotics and prebiotics. 
  • A digestibility score of 82% or higher. 
  • Medium fiber (3 – 5%). 
  • Free from artificial ingredients. 
  • Free from low-quality grains like corn, wheat, soy.

How do I know if it’s the right food for my dog?

Just because a kibble may be one of the best dog food for firm stools, it doesn’t necessarily mean it will be the right choice for your dog. That’s why we give you ten options! 

When choosing a kibble for your dog, you’ll need to consider the following: 

  • What protein does it contain? 
  • Does my dog react badly to any particular protein? 
  • Do I want grain-free or with grains? 
  • Does my dog need joint supplements? 
  • Does my dog need DHA and EPA? 
  • Is my pup active or not? 

Once you know the answers to these questions, you’ll have a better idea of what to look for in a dog food. 

If you’ve switched foods and you aren’t sure if it was the right choice, pay careful attention to your pup for a week or two. If the poop problem does not improve, your pooch seems to be listless or lethargic, or they are reluctant to eat their food, it may be worth finding another one. 

You’ll know it’s the right choice if their stool firms up, they seem happier, and they’re pleased to get their food at mealtimes!

What can I do to firm her stool?

Although feeding your dog the best dog food for firm stools can help reduce messy poop, there are some other things you can do to help firm her stool up. 

  • Increase their water intake. 
  • Buy them a probiotic supplement treat. 
  • Avoid feeding your pup human food. 
  • Switch to a limited ingredient diet. 
  • Feed your dog bland food like plain chicken and rice for a day or two. 
  • In extreme cases, withholding food and water for 12 to 24 hours can help (your dog may not understand why, so they’ll need extra love!).