best-dog-food-for-hip-dysplasia

5 Best Dog Foods for Hip Dysplasia

In this guide we’ll take a look at the best dog food for hip dysplasia.
We’ve compared quality of ingredients, nutritional information, and value for money
to give you our top recommendations below.

Breed Advisor only recommends products that we’ve tested, or significantly researched . This page contains affiliate links, that at no additional cost to you, may earn a small commission for the site. Find out more here.

What is the Best Dog Food for Hip Dysplasia?

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Vet’s Advice

Hip dysplasia is a hereditary joint condition that affects many breeds. The diagnosis of hip dysplasia is usually made with an examination and radiographs taken by your veterinarian who may suggest medications and complementary therapies to help your dog. The right diet can make a real difference too, so here are some things you should look for when deciding what to feed your dog with hip dysplasia.

Choose a diet with added joint supplements

There are some diets formulated specifically for joint health, containing ingredients such as glucosamine and chondroitin which are often derived from green-lipped mussels. These antioxidants can help maintain healthy cartilage and may improve your dog’s mobility. Inclusion in the diet in this way saves you from having to give your pet separate supplements.

Look for a diet rich in omega-3 fatty acids

Omega-3 fatty acids are often found in ingredients such as fish oil or linseed oil. High concentrations of these can help act as natural anti-inflammatories, soothing sore and stiff joints. As a side benefit, they will contribute to good skin and coat condition in your pet too.

Consider your dog’s calorie intake

Keeping your dog at a lean and healthy weight will mean less pressure on affected joints. If your dog is overweight or prone to weight gain, then consider a diet that has reduced calories. Otherwise, ensure you are feeding the correct amount for your dog’s ideal body weight by weighing the food out properly.

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Compare Our Recommended Dog Foods

Use the dropdown to sort the table by the feature that’s most important to you.

  • Top 5 Ingredients
  • Type
  • Lifestage
  • Calories
  • Protein
  • Fat
  • Fiber
  • Cost
  • Our score

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Hip Dysplasia Dog Food Reviews

VICTOR Purpose Performance Formula Dry Dog Food review

At a Glance

  • Top 5 Ingredients:
    1. Beef Meal
    2. Grain Sorghum
    3. Whole Grain Millet
    4. Chicken Fat (preserved with mixed Tocopherols)
    5. Blood Meal Conventionally Dried

  • Type: Dry food
  • Lifestage: Adult
  • Calories: 399 kcal/cup
  • Protein: 26%
  • Fat: 18%
  • Fiber: 3.8%

VICTOR Purpose Performance Formula, one of the best foods for hip dysplasia, offers exceptional nutrition at a price point that is easily affordable. This high quality diet prioritizes a protein-rich formulation to support strong and healthy muscles from its plentiful amount of amino acids.

This particular VICTOR offering contains three different meats: beef meal, turkey meal, and chicken meal to ensure an excellent foundation for the nutritional needs of active dogs. Glucosamine and chondroitin have been supplemented as a vital help for joint health and to thwart hip dysplasia.

Considered one of the best dog foods for hip dysplasia, it’s hard to go wrong with feeding a dog VICTOR Purpose Performance Formula.

Pros

  • Owners are pleased with the price of this food, believing it offers excellent nutrition at a reasonable cost.
  • Dogs that were regularly fed this diet saw improvements in their coat and skin quality. Their skin was well-hydrated and free from dandruff, and their fur was soft, thick, lustrous, and shiny.
  • Dogs suffering with gastrointestinal distress and poor stool quality saw great improvements when fed VICTOR Purpose Performance Formula consistently.
  • Several owners remarked that their dogs shed far less when regularly fed VICTOR Purpose Performance Formula.
  • Even picky eaters love this food. Dogs look forward to their every meal and eagerly lick their bowls clean.

Cons

  • A few people noted that on occasion their bags of food contained smaller than normal pieces of kibble.
  • Some dogs dislike the taste of this food and will not eat it. This is likely just a matter of personal preference and is not a reflection on the food itself.
  • Several owners expressed they felt this food had a smell that was quite off putting to them.
  • Some owners prefer to feed a diet that is completely grain-free, particularly those with dogs with allergies to whole grains.
  • This diet does not contain any supplements to assist with joint health in dogs.

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Nutro Ultra Weight Management Dry Dog Food review

At a Glance

  • Top 5 Ingredients:
    1. Chicken
    2. Chicken Meal (source of Glucosamine and Chondroitin Sulfate)
    3. Whole Brown Rice
    4. Brewers Rice
    5. Rice Bran

  • Type: Dry food
  • Lifestage: Adult
  • Calories: 335 kcal/cup
  • Protein: 23%
  • Fat: 11.5%
  • Fiber: 4%

Nutro Ultra Weight Management Dry Dog Food is a premium level diet that assists dogs with achieving an excellent body condition to prevent hip dysplasia and other joint problems. A diet that focuses on lean meats, Nutro Ultra Weight Management’s primary ingredient is chicken, a lean meat that is full of amino acids to support a healthy body.

Lamb and salmon are also included in this diet to provide additional omega 3 and 6 fatty acids to encourage strong joints and boost coat and skin health. A grain-inclusive diet, each ingredient was selected for its high fiber ratio, assisting dogs with maintaining efficient digestive processes.

Fruits and vegetables round out this diet through their high antioxidant profile that promotes the development of a strong immune system to fight disease. Nutro Ultra Weight Management, rated as one of the best foods for hip dysplasia, contains no artificial colors, flavors, or preservatives.

The powerhouse supplements glucosamine and chondroitin have been added to this diet to boost joint health.

Pros

  • Dogs love the taste of this food and look forward to their meals with great enthusiasm.
  • Owners reported that dogs that regularly suffered from gastrointestinal distress found complete relief when fed a consistent diet of Nutro Ultra Weight Management.
  • Owners shared that the transition process from their old food to Nutro Ultra Weight Management was seamless.
  • Owners like the size of the kibble pieces in this diet. Several expressed that they found this food formulation to be an excellent choice for small dogs in particular.
  • Several owners were pleased to share that their dogs saw an improvement in their energy levels when fed this diet regularly.

Cons

  • Some dogs dislike the taste of this food and will not eat it.
  • In rare cases, some dogs experienced mild gastrointestinal distress such as nausea, loose stools, and diarrhea when fed this diet. This may be the result of too quick a transition from the old food to the new or a sensitivity to one of the diet’s ingredients.
  • A few owners felt that the kibble pieces were too large for small breed dogs to break down well. They expressed concern that these big kibble morsels may pose a choking hazard for their dogs.
  • This recipe contains pea protein, an ingredient of questionable nutritional value and that may be linked to such problems as lowered fertility and rapid spikes in blood sugar.
  • This diet contains no prebiotics or probiotics to assist with digestion in dogs.

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Dogswell Happy Hips Chicken & Oats Recipe Dry Dog Food review

At a Glance

  • Top 5 Ingredients:
    1. Chicken
    2. Chicken Meal
    3. Oats
    4. Barley
    5. Peas

  • Type: Dry food
  • Lifestage: Adult
  • Calories: 360 kcal/cup
  • Protein: 24%
  • Fat: 12%
  • Fiber: 5.5%

Dogswell Happy Hips Chicken & Oats Recipe Dry Dog Food is a diet that has been carefully designed to support healthy hips and joints in dogs. The primary ingredient in this excellent quality food is whole chicken, a protein that is both lean and chock full of amino acids to support healthy muscle development.

A diet that includes both whole grains and fruits and vegetables, Dogswell Happy Hips contains plentiful servings of fiber and antioxidants to encourage good digestion and boost immunity. To provide support for joint health, glucosamine and chondroitin play an important role in this recipe.

Dogswell Happy Hips, one of the best dog foods for hip dysplasia, is free from corn, wheat, soy, artificial colors, flavors, and preservatives.

Pros

  • Most dogs really enjoy the flavor of this food. Owners are pleased to report that they consume their every meal with hearty gusto.
  • After eating this diet on a consistent basis, dogs that struggled to maintain a healthy weight in the past saw great improvements in their body condition.
  • Dogs regularly fed this diet displayed coats that were healthy, shiny, and soft.
  • Owners noted that dogs suffering from arthritis seemed to experience less pain and fewer mobility problems when consistently fed a diet of Dogswell Happy Hips.
  • Several owners indicated their dogs saw an increase in their energy levels when fed a steady diet of this food.

Cons

  • A few owners noticed that this food smelled strongly of chemicals. They found this aroma to be very off putting.
  • In rare cases, some dogs struggled with mild gastrointestinal distress after eating this food. Most often, this is simply the result of too quick a change from the old diet to the new and will alleviate in time.
  • Some dogs are disinterested in this food and are reluctant to eat it.
  • Peas play a starring role in this diet, a controversial ingredient of questionable nutritional value.
  • Some owners prefer to feed a diet that is completely free from grains, especially those whose dogs suffer from recurring allergies.

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Instinct Raw Boost Healthy Weight Grain-Free Chicken & Freeze-Dried Raw Pieces Recipe Dry Dog Food review

At a Glance

  • Top 5 Ingredients:
    1. Chicken
    2. Chicken Meal
    3. Peas
    4. Tapioca
    5. Menhaden Fish Meal

  • Type: Freeze-dried raw and dry food
  • Lifestage: Adult
  • Calories: 368 kcal/cup
  • Protein: 32%
  • Fat: 13%
  • Fiber: 7.5%

For one of the best dog foods for hip dysplasia, it’s hard to go wrong with Instinct Raw Boost Healthy Weight. A high protein diet, Instinct Raw Boost Healthy Weight includes both dehydrated raw meat pieces and kibble to ensure maximum flavor for dogs to enjoy.

Chicken is listed as the primary ingredient, a flavorful meat that contains all the vital nutrients dogs need to fuel a healthy body. L-carnitine has also been supplemented to boost metabolism and assist with weight loss and maintenance.

This diet contains no grains, potato, corn, wheat, soy, by-products, artificial colors, or preservatives.

Pros

  • Owners were pleased to share that dogs that previously suffered from sensitive skin and allergies found complete relief from their symptoms when regularly fed Instinct Raw Boost Healthy Weight.
  • Dogs that had poor stool quality saw an improvement in their digestion when fed a steady diet of this food.
  • Owners feel this diet is very reasonably priced, particularly given the exceptional quality nutrition it offers.
  • Dogs find this food to be chock full of flavor. They look forward to their every meal and eagerly lick their bowls clean.
  • Owners shared that dogs that struggled to maintain a healthy weight achieved their ideal body condition when fed this diet regularly.

Cons

  • A few owners felt this food went stale quickly after it was opened. They noted that their dogs ate their meals heartily until the bag was ¾’s finished at which time they lost interest until a new bag was opened.
  • In very rare cases, some dogs suffered from recurring itchiness when fed this food. This may be the result of a sensitivity to one of the ingredients in this diet.
  • A few dogs dislike the taste of this food and will not eat it.
  • In only a few instances, some dogs experienced poor stool quality when transitioned to Instinct Raw Boost Healthy Weight. These dogs may need a longer transition period to adjust to their new diet.
  • A couple of owners indicated their dogs began to shed more profusely when fed this diet on an ongoing basis.

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CANIDAE Grain-Free PURE Healthy Weight Limited Ingredient Chicken & Pea Recipe Dry Dog Food review

At a Glance

  • Top 5 Ingredients:
    1. Chicken
    2. Chicken Meal
    3. Turkey Meal
    4. Sweet Potatoes
    5. Peas

  • Type: Dry food
  • Lifestage: Adult
  • Calories: 409 kcal/cup
  • Protein: 28%
  • Fat: 9%
  • Fiber: 5%

CANIDAE PURE Weight Management, ranked among the best dog foods for hip dysplasia, offers all the nutrition dogs need from their diet to thrive. Based on a limited ingredients list, CANIDAE PURE Weight Management contains just nine foods, all of which are of exceptional quality and support optimal health in dogs.

This diet contains no grains and is also free from corn, wheat, soy, artificial flavors, colors, and preservatives. It has been fortified with a proprietary blend of probiotics, antioxidants, and essential fatty acids to provide a real support for joint health.

Pros

  • Owners like that this diet helped their dogs to achieve and maintain a healthy weight.
  • Dogs really enjoy the flavor of this food and look forward to their every meal.
  • Owners are pleased with the size of the kibble pieces in this food, feeling they are of sufficient size to prevent choking in their dogs.
  • Most owners love the emphasis on high quality, easily digestible proteins, believing these are a great help in achieving good digestion in their dogs.
  • This diet includes prebiotics and probiotics to assist with fluid digestive processing.

Cons

  • In rare cases, some dogs saw an increase in their number of daily bowel movements. This may indicate that those dogs are struggling to digest some of the ingredients in this food.
  • A few owners noted that in subsequent bags the kibble was darker in color than what they were accustomed to.
  • In a few instances, some dogs experienced mild nausea after being fed this food. This may simply be due to an allergy or sensitivity to one of the ingredients.
  • Several owners shared they felt this diet was very crumbly.
  • Some owners indicated that they felt this diet was rather costly.

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How to Choose the Best Dog Foods for Hip Dysplasia

Hip dysplasia is a condition of the bone that most commonly affects large and giant breed dogs. However, small to medium breeds can also be plagued by this life-altering condition. Hip dysplasia is most often inherited: however, inappropriate or excessive exercise can also lead to the development of the disease.

Hip dysplasia occurs when the ball does not fit into the hip socket correctly. When this occurs, bone rubs against bone causing further deterioration of each joint and bringing with it excruciating pain.

Among the breeds that are known to be prone to hip dysplasis are:

  • Old English Bulldog
  • Pug
  • Dogue de Bordeaux
  • Neapolitan Mastiff
  • Brussels Griffon
  • St. Bernard
  • Otterhound
  • Clumber Spaniel
  • Black Russian Terrier
  • Great Dane
  • Irish Wolfhound
  • Bernese Mountain Dog
  • Rhodesian Ridgeback
  • German Shepherd

Hip dysplasia most commonly is hereditary and is passed to a puppy from its parents.  Unfortunately, passing OFA hip scores does not mean that a set of parents cannot pass down hip dysplasia to their children.

However, even in dogs with excellent hips, hip dysplasia can develop if bone growth during the puppy years occurs too rapidly. Foods that are too rich in protein or that contain the incorrect balance of calcium to phosphorus can lead to growth spurts that the musculoskeletal system cannot keep pace with. As a result, the puppy becomes at greater risk for developing hip or elbow dysplasia or other problems associated with the bones.

Though there are some common symptoms dogs with hip dysplasia may display, some dogs do not show indication at all that they are suffering from this condition. Dogs are masters at hiding pain, and thus, it is sometimes not until the discomfort is extreme that a dog will begin to show signs of the disease.

Among the most commonly seen symptoms of hip dysplasia are:

  • Pain or discomfort when rising
  • Reduced activity levels
  • Limping
  • Hind end weakness
  • Favoring of a leg
  • Noticeable change in movement
  • Deterioration of the muscles in the legs
  • Inability or unwillingness to navigate stairs
  • Stiffness of limbs
  • Personality changes

Another condition that often accompanies hip dysplasia is arthritis, an inflammation of the joints that causes great pain to dogs.

There are several different things that can be done to treat dogs suffering from hip dysplasia. Treatment options depend on the extent the disease has begun to affect the dog. Other determining factors in assessing the most effective treatment options are the dog’s age and size.

Though diet can play a role in helping to prevent hip dysplasia, some dogs reach the point where surgery is the only option for relief from pain and the restoration of mobility.

By far, the best course of action is to prevent hip dysplasia from occurring by feeding an appropriate diet, maintaining a healthy weight, and encouraging regular exercise. Anti-inflammatory drugs can be prescribed for dogs suffering from pain related to this condition.

The best dog foods for hip dysplasia can assist dogs with maintaining a healthy body weight, a vital support in preventing the development of this painful and debilitating health condition.

Choosing the Correct Calorie Count for Dogs with Hip Dysplasia

Maintaining a healthy body weight is critical for dogs with the potential for developing hip dysplasia. Since dogs that are allowed to eat at will can easily gain weight, free feeding is strongly discouraged.

Experts recommend consulting the bag of food selected for the dog for a starting point as to suggested serving sizes. These will need to be modified to reflect the dog’s weight, activity level, and appetite until the correct portion has been found.

Adult dogs require a high quality diet that contains a minimum of 18 percent protein and 5 percent fat while puppies do best on a food comprised of 22 percent protein and 8 percent fat. Care must be taken to only feed puppies a puppy food that contains the correct amount of calcium to phosphorus to prevent rapid bone growth from occurring, a leading cause of the development of hip dysplasia in large and giant breed dogs.

The best dog foods for hip dysplasia include joint supports such as glucosamine and chondroitin.

Dietary Requirements for Dogs with Hip Dysplasia

The best dog foods for hip dysplasia are properly nutritionally balanced and contain top quality ingredients that have been carefully selected for their high nutritional value. Ingredients such as artificial flavors, colors, and preservatives should be avoided as they contribute nothing of quality to a dog’s diet and are common allergens for many dogs.

A lean animal protein is the preferred foundation of any diet for dogs with the potential for developing hip dysplasia. Whole meats are the premiere choice; however, meat meals are also an excellent option for concentrated protein. By-products and plant-based proteins such as corn, wheat, and soy are not of sufficient quality to be suitable for dogs in need of support to maintain healthy joint function.

Carbohydrates are an important, though lesser, part of any diet for dogs. These can be derived from whole grains, fruits, or vegetables. The main role of these items is their emphasis on dietary fiber and antioxidants to encourage excellent digestion and a healthy immune system.

Healthy fats are a vital part of any diet for dogs. They assist with joint health but also support excellent quality skin and coat and provide dogs with the fuel they need to remain active. Healthy fats are best taken from animal sources such as chicken fat and oily fish.

No diet for dogs that are prone to hip dysplasia is complete without the addition of glucosamine and chondroitin to boost joint function. Prebiotics and probiotics are also valuable additions as they encourage good digestion.

Things to Look for in the Best Dog Foods for Hip Dysplasia

Here is a basic list of the most important things to look for in the best dog food for hip dysplasia:

  • Whole meat or meat meal proteins heading up the ingredients list (in non-veterinary diets)
  • Prepared without the addition of chemicals, flavorings, fillers, or mystery ingredients
  • Enriched with probiotics and helpful supplements
  • Meets AAFCO nutritional requirements for a complete and balanced food
  • Contains healthy amounts of omega 3 and 6 fatty acids to support coat and skin health
  • Includes glucosamine and chondroitin

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