10 Best Dog Foods for Dry Skin & Coat Health (2021 Reviews)

Finding the best dog food for shedding and dry skin can lead to a lot of trial and error. Some dogs will respond well to certain dog food brands, while others will still have problems. That’s why we put together a list of the best dog foods for dry skin and shedding. All of these dog foods have performed well in our trials, so I’m sure you will find one that can help with your dog’s shedding problem.


What Causes Dry Skin in Dogs?

At the risk of stating the painfully obvious, dry skin occurs when the skin lacks sufficient moisture.

A healthy dog’s skin is protected by a layer of oils that help keep it supple and prevent it from drying out. Dogs that do not receive enough of these oils in their diet, or who are allowed to remain dehydrated are likely to develop dry, itchy skin.

However, there are other causes of Sahara-like skin, including flea infestations, skin diseases and food allergies, so it is important to visit your veterinarian and determine the original cause of the dry skin.

You’ll need to address these issues before switching foods or taking other steps to improve your dog’s skin condition. Your vet can also treat any secondary problems, such as bacterial infections, lesions or bald spots, that often occur when dry skin is not treated adequately.

what dog food is good for dry skin

Best Dog Food for Dogs with Dry Skin

The following foods are some of the highest-rated options, designed to help eliminate your dog’s dry skin and get him looking his best again.

The 9 Best Dog Foods for Dry Skin

Nature’s Recipe lives up to its name by offering a dog food that is made with no fillers or artificial stuff; their ingredients come straight from nature. They’ve been in the game for 30 years and counting, so they know how to find the best food for dogs everywhere while placing a high standard on skin and coat health. Every ingredient has some healthy or advantageous effect.

The recipe itself is packed with all sorts of goodies. It starts with linoleic acid and zinc, which are especially good for dogs with dry skin because they help promote natural oils to keep your dog from scratching. Omega fatty acids further the process by fortifying your buddy’s fur. To top it off, there are no unnecessary fillers like wheat or corn or artificial colors.

Many buyers who have dogs with chronic issues with dry skin report that this food has been a blessing. Dogs with a tendency to scratch seem more comfortable upon switching to this food, with scratching stopping altogether in many cases. Not only is there a noticeable difference in the way pets act, but they look different as well — their fur becomes thicker and shinier.

This food pairs wonderfully with treats that are high in fish oil.

The only issue with this product is that it is not especially good for dogs with stomach issues. If you have a dog with certain protein allergies, you should check with your vet before putting this into their diet.

All in all, we think this is the best dog food for dogs with dry skin and coat health this year. Pros

  • Dogs noticeably scratch less and have shinier, healthier-looking fur
  • Packed with nutrients for better skin, coat, and overall health
  • No unnecessary fillers
  • Cons

  • Not good for dogs with sensitive stomachs
  • 2. Royal Canin Sensitive Skin Dog Food – Best Value

    Royal Canin has made a food geared specifically toward the health of a dog’s fur and skin, though it has other goodies in there as well. This is a wonderful food for overall health.

    The ingredients are loaded with fur-fortifying goodness, all while helping to promote natural oils being spread across your dog’s body. Made with omega 3 fatty acids, this food reinforces the skin barrier of your dog, which can lead to less itching. The amino acids will also help their fur be shinier than ever.

    This food also has DHA, which is wonderful for mental development. The kibbles are specifically made small to help with oral health, and the highly digestible protein promotes good digestive help. With 50 years of research under their belt, it’s no wonder that Royal Canin has this down to a science.

    Buyers report that this food greatly reduces scratching and most of the time, eliminates it altogether. The other perk is that dogs seem to love the taste!

    Royal Canin does recommend that you add or switch to wet food every now and then, which is the only thumbs-down for this product, as we would prefer it be an all-in-one deal. Even so, we think that this is the best dog food for dry skin and coat health for the money. Pros

  • Great for dry skin
  • Good for oral health and digestive health
  • Dogs love the taste
  • Cons

  • Should be supplemented with wet food every now and then
  • Top Menu

    what dog food is good for dry skin

    Dry skin in dogs may seem like not much of a problem, but nothing could be further from the truth.. Aside from affecting your dogs appearance, the condition can affect the dogs physical and mental health to the point of being inactive and miserable due to the itching and scaling.

    If your dog suffers from this condition, there a few things known to help. They include better skin and fur care routine (avoiding excessive bathing), vet-prescribed medications and lotions, encouraging your dog to drink more water and of course; a diet change. Ill focus on diet change, some of the possible causes of canine dry skin in this article as Ill review the best dog food for dry skin. Ill also discuss some of the things to look out for when buying food for a dog with a dry skin condition.

    Table of Contents

    Best Dog Food for Shedding and Dry Skin

    AvoDerm Natural Grain Free Dog Food (Buy on Amazon.com) is my number one go-to choice when it comes to helping with my dog’s coat and skin. When all other foods and medications failed AvoDerm didn’t let me down. If you have a dog that has skin allergies, or any other type of skin condition AvoDerm is the best dog food brand for shedding on the market.

    The unique ingredient found in AvoDerm is avocado, and as you can probably tell this ingredient is how the name AvoDerm came about. The avocado fruit is well known for being a rich source of essential fatty acids. These fats play a very important role in building up a cells protective lipid layer.

    When a dog doesn’t have an adequate source of these essential fats, their skin and hair can become dry and brittle which can lead to hair loss and dry flaky skin. AvoDerm contains the proper ratio of Omega 3 & 6 fatty acids, which is very important since modern diets usually contain way too much Omega 6 fatty acids and not enough Omega 3 fatty acids.

    Another great thing about AvoDerm dog food is that you can get it as a wet dog food in cans, or as dry kibble in bags. Both varieties are completely grain free and both types have avocado in them so you will get the same high-quality ingredients that will prevent shedding no matter what kind of food you pick out.

    Nature’s Recipe Healthy Skin Vegetarian Recipe (Buy Online) is specifically made for dogs with skin related problems. If you have a dog whose hair and skin are always dry, and they can’t stop itching and scratching it’s worth giving this food a shot.

    The main ingredients in this food are rice, soybeans, barley and canola oil. As you can tell by the product name and the ingredients this is a completely vegetarian dog food. You won’t have to worry about your dog getting enough nutrients from this vegetarian food since it contains 22% protein and 8% fat.

    The key benefit of switching your dog over to a vegetarian dog food is to try to eliminate any ingredients that are causing your dog’s skin and hair problems. Some people have reported that after feeding their dog just one bag of this food they have seen a drastic difference in their dog’s skin and coat.

    Along with the limited vegetarian ingredients, this food contains a wide range of vitamins and minerals that help contribute to a dogs skin and hair health. For shedding and dry skin, the Omega 3 & 6 fatty acids found in this food are what really help out. These healthy fats keep a dogs skin and hair naturally moisturized so their skin will be less dry and their hair won’t easily fall out.

    Pro Plan Select Sensitive Skin & Stomach Dog Food (Buy Online) is tailor-made for dogs with dry skin and food allergies. If you have tried almost every dog food on the market and you still can’t find the right one Pro Plan Select might be the one that finally helps out.

    This food aims to be hypo-allergenic with a limited set of ingredients that will also help promote skin and hair health. The main ingredients found in this food are lamb, oatmeal, barley, canola, fish meal and brewers rice. All of these ingredients are easy on a dogs stomach and they will also help strengthen a dogs skin and coat.

    The primary ingredients that will help prevent dry skin and shedding are the Omega 3 and Omega 6 fatty acids. This food contains 0.8% Omega 3 fatty acids and 1.3% Omega 6 fatty acids. And it contains vitamin E and biotin which will also help prevent shedding and itchy cracked skin.

    Whole Earth Farms Grain Free Dog Food (Buy Online) contains top quality ingredients at an affordable price. If you need a dog food that will help keep your dogs skin and fur healthy, but you don’t want to break the bank then Whole Earth Farms Grain Free Dog Food will hit that sweet spot.

    This grain free dog food contains chicken, turkey, potatoes, peas and sweet potatoes. Whole Earth Farms also never uses any meat by-products so you can rest assured you are feeding your dog only premium cuts.

    This food also contains an assortment of vitamins and minerals that will help improve your dogs coat. The ingredient that will have the most dramatic effect on your dog’s skin and hair health is the salmon oil. This fish oil extract contains very high levels of Omega 3 & 6 fatty acids which are known to play a large role in overall skin and hair health. In addition to the salmon oil, this food contains biotin and vitamin E both of which play a key role in keeping a dogs hair from falling out.

    Merrick Limited Ingredient Diet Grain Free Dog Food (Buy Online) is the perfect food for picky eaters or dogs with food allergies. The main ingredients in this dog food are duck meat, sweet potatoes, peas, and potatoes. And everything is cooked and sourced from the USA with no Chinese ingredients.

    Grain free dog foods can help prevent shedding along with dry and flaky skin. Grains can cause a wide range of skin conditions all the way from dandruff to eczema. Eliminating grains completely from a dogs diet is a good way to limit hair loss and dry skin.

    This dog food is fortified with vitamins and minerals that are essential for a smooth coat. The Omega 3 & 6 fatty acids found in this dog food are vital for a dogs skin and hair health. In addition, the added biotin and vitamin E will help keep your dog’s skin and hair strong and flake free.

    NUTRO WHOLESOME ESSENTIALS (Buy Online) is one of the most natural dog foods you can find on the market. This dog food contains no artificial colors or flavors. And it is completely GMO-free so you can be sure you’re feeding your dog only what they need while leaving out the rest.

    The primary ingredients found in this food are lamb, rice, oats, and peas. This food also has a good balance of plant-based fats since it contains both sunflower and soybean oil. It is also a good source of macronutrients since it contains 22% protein and 14% fat.

    This food also has been fortified with Linoleic Acid which is a good source of Omega 3 fatty acids. Linoleic acid is an excellent vegetarian source of Omega 3 fatty acids, which makes it a great alternative to fish oil extracts that might cause digestive problems in certain pets. And to top it all off this food contains 2.5mg/kg of biotin which also plays a crucial role in keeping a dogs hair and skin in peak condition.

    NUTRO MAX Grain Free Dog Food (Buy Online) is a great choice for anyone looking to exclude grains from their dog’s diet. This food contains no grains or leafy vegetables that can cause a dog to experience intestinal discomfort or malabsorption.

    The main ingredients in this food are chicken, potatoes, peas, and lamb. The potatoes replace the grains as the primary carbohydrate source. And the chicken and lamb contribute to this foods very high 26% protein content.

    While this dog food contains a healthy mix of vitamins and minerals it doesn’t have any added Omega 3 and Omega 6 fatty acids. That means if your dog’s shedding problem is due to dry skin and hair this food might not be the best option. But if your dog is losing hair due to food allergies or malabsorption then this food can still help out.

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