5 Best Dog Foods For Shiba Inu Puppies (2022)

In this guide we’ll take a look at the best dog food for Shiba Inu puppies.
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 Shiba Inu Puppies?

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Compare Our Recommended Dog Foods

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

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Shiba Inu Puppy Food Reviews

Merrick Backcountry Freeze-Dried Raw Puppy Recipe Grain-Free Dry Dog Food review

At a Glance

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

  • Type: Freeze-dried raw and dry food
  • Lifestage: Puppy
  • Calories: 396 kcal/cup
  • Protein: 30%
  • Fat: 14%
  • Fiber: 3.5%

Merrick Backcountry Freeze-Dried Dog Food is an excellent quality food to fuel the needs of the growing Shiba Inu puppy. This diet lists deboned chicken and chicken meal as its primary ingredients, two excellent sources of protein.

This food is grain-free, taking its carbohydrates from fruits and vegetables to help prevent allergies. The formulation, considered to be one of the best dog foods for Shiba Inu puppies, includes dry food as well as dehydrated raw pieces of meat to increase flavor and promote eating satisfaction.


  • Owners of puppies with allergies reported improved coat and skin health with a switch to this diet.
  • Most puppies find this food highly flavorful and look forward to their meals with great enthusiasm.
  • Owners of puppies fed this food formulation share that their pups have strong energy levels, excellent oral health, and are easily able to maintain their optimal body condition.
  • Most owners relate that when transitioned very gradually their puppies experienced no gastrointestinal distress with a move to this food.
  • Dogs fed this diet saw a reduction in the number of their bowel movements and an improvement in stool quality.


  • Some puppies prefer to eat the freeze-dried raw meat pieces and ignore the kibble. To combat this problem, some owners recommend feeding the raw meat chunks as a treat at the end of the meal.
  • Some owners expressed they felt there weren’t enough pieces of freeze-dried meat in this recipe.
  • In rare cases, some puppies were uninterested in this food. This is likely due to personal preference rather than any fault with the recipe itself.
  • In a minor number of puppies, mild gastrointestinal distress was observed. This is most often the result of transitioning too quickly for the puppy’s system to properly adjust.
  • Some owners feel this diet is too costly.

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Taste of the Wild High Prairie Puppy Formula Grain-Free Dry Dog Food review

At a Glance

  • Top 5 Ingredients:
    1. Water Buffalo
    2. Lamb Meal
    3. Sweet Potatoes
    4. Egg Product
    5. Pea Protein

  • Type: Dry food
  • Lifestage: Puppy
  • Calories: 364 kcal/cup
  • Protein: 28%
  • Fat: 17%
  • Fiber: 5%

Taste of the Wild High Prairie Puppy Formula Grain-Free Dry Dog Food has been carefully crafted to meet the nutritional needs of growing puppies. This particular food includes several novel types of protein to prevent allergic reactions in pups that can be prone to skin conditions.

This diet, rated among the best dog foods for Shiba Inu puppies, is grain-free with its carbohydrates in the form of fruits and vegetables. Taste of the Wild High Prairie Puppy Formula is free from grains, corn, wheat, fillers, artificial flavorings and colorings, and preservatives.


  • Shiba Inu puppies transitioned to this diet showed an increase in energy and overall appetite.
  • Owners report that puppies regularly fed this diet have excellent stool quality and proper digestion.
  • Some owners share that their puppies’ coats are soft and shiny as a result of a regular diet of Taste of the Wild High Prairie Puppy.
  • Puppies that previously suffered with gastrointestinal distress found relief when switched to this diet.
  • Some owners indicate that their puppies like this food so much that they can also successfully use it for training treats.


  • Some owners are concerned about the absence of grains in this diet. For people that feel their pups would do better on a grain-inclusive food, Taste of the Wild offers other puppy formulations with whole grains.
  • In a few cases, owners expressed that the kibble pieces were too small for medium and large breed puppies.
  • A few owners remarked that the smell of this food was off putting to them.
  • Over time, some puppies lost interest in this particular food formulation. A switch to a different Taste of the Wild puppy formulation based on another protein may solve this problem.
  • In very rare instances, some dogs experienced mild gastrointestinal distress when transitioned to this diet. This may be the result of switching foods too quickly.

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Nulo Freestyle Turkey & Sweet Potato Grain-Free Dry Puppy Food review

At a Glance

  • Top 5 Ingredients:
    1. Deboned Turkey
    2. Turkey Meal
    3. Salmon Meal
    4. Chickpeas
    5. Chicken Fat (Preserved with Mixed Tocopherols & Citric Acid)

  • Type: Dry food
  • Lifestage: Puppy
  • Calories: 441 kcal/cup
  • Protein: 33%
  • Fat: 18%
  • Fiber: 4%

Nulo FreeStyle Grain Free is a food that focuses on protein sources that are independent of chicken or eggs, two ingredients which can cause allergic reactions in some dogs. This diet, one of the best foods for Shiba Inu puppies, is grain-free and focuses on the correct ratio of calcium and phosphorus to ensure proper development and excellent bone health.

With such a high calorie count per cup, this food will stretch further than other less calorie dense foods, increasing its value. Nulo Freestyle’s main disadvantage is its high price tag.


  • Owners with puppies that are notoriously picky report that their pups love this food and eat it heartily.
  • The stool quality of puppies transitioned to this food was greatly improved.
  • Families share that they are pleased with the price of this Nulo offering, expressing that they feel it is an exceptional quality diet offering them great value for their dog food dollar.
  • Puppies suffering from food-based allergies did well on this diet and found relief from gastrointestinal stress and itchy skin.
  • The low carbohydrate content in this food assisted puppies suffering from yeast-related problems in finding total relief.


  • Some puppies did not enjoy the flavor of this food. Thankfully, Nulo offers several formulations with different proteins that may be a better choice for their Shiba Inu’s unique preferences.
  • A few owners felt that the smell of this food was overpowering. This can mostly be attributed to the inclusion of salmon meal, a potent smelling meat, in the recipe.
  • On occasion, puppies fed this diet suffered from excess gas. This mostly likely is the result of transitioning too quickly from the old diet to the new.
  • The inclusion of chickpeas, yellow peas, and pea fiber are of concern to some owners. These ingredients are somewhat controversial with their nutritional value considered to be questionable.
  • This diet does not contain any supplements to provide added support for joint health.

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Instinct Be Natural Puppy Real Chicken & Brown Rice Recipe Freeze-Dried Raw Coated Dry Dog Food review

At a Glance

  • Top 5 Ingredients:
    1. Chicken
    2. Chicken Meal
    3. Barley
    4. Brown Rice
    5. Oatmeal

  • Type: Dry food
  • Lifestage: Puppy
  • Calories: 468 kcal/cup
  • Protein: 25%
  • Fat: 18%
  • Fiber: 4%

Instinct Be Natural Puppy Recipe packs a powerhouse punch with its combination of both dry food and freeze-dried raw meat. Based in animal proteins from both chicken and chicken meal, this diet meets all the hallmarks of what a growing Shiba Inu puppy needs.

This food is free from such nutritionally devoid items as fillers, corn, wheat, soy, by-products, artificial colors and flavors, and preservatives.

The main drawback to this food is its heavy emphasis on brown rice as a carbohydrate source. This food is best suited to puppies that have not displayed any indication of allergies.

With so many nutritional benefits to its credit, it is not difficult to see why Instinct Be Natural Puppy Recipe is considered to be one of the best dog foods for Shiba Inu puppies.


  • Owners report that puppies fed this diet have excellent quality stool.
  • Several owners express they are pleased that this puppy food contains no grains, soy, corn, wheat, potatoes, or peas, giving them confidence in the quality of the diet.
  • Puppies regularly fed this diet exhibited beautiful coat quality and strong reserves of energy.
  • Owners of picky eaters happily report that their puppies enjoy this food, looking forward with great anticipation to every meal.
  • Owners feel this diet is available at a reasonable price point, making it affordable for most families.


  • Some puppies experienced mild gastrointestinal distress after eating this food. This may be the result of too quick a switch from the previous diet to this Instinct offering.
  • Some puppies disliked the taste of this food and would not eat it. This may simply be a matter of individual preference.
  • There are no added supplements to assist with joint health in growing Shiba Inu puppies.
  • For puppies with allergies to grains, one of Instinct by Nature’s Variety grain-free food offerings is a better selection.
  • A few owners question if the formula of this diet has recently changed as their puppies lost interest in eating this food.

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VICTOR Purpose Active Dog & Puppy Formula Grain-Free Dry Dog Food review

At a Glance

  • Top 5 Ingredients:
    1. Beef Meal
    2. Peas
    3. Sweet Potato
    4. Chicken Fat (preserved with mixed Tocopherols)
    5. Menhaden Fish Meal (source of DHA-Docosahexaenoic Acid)

  • Type: Dry food
  • Lifestage: Puppy
  • Calories: 384 kcal/cup
  • Protein: 33%
  • Fat: 16%
  • Fiber: 3.8%

VICTOR Purpose Active Dog and Puppy is often recommended as one of the best dog foods for Shiba Inu puppies available for purchase today. A diet created from the finest quality ingredients sourced from every corner of the United States, this high performance food formulation’s recipe is rich in protein including beef, fish, and pork meals as its foundation. A diet that is suited to the needs of both puppies and adult dogs, VICTOR Purpose Active Dog and Puppy contains no grains, making it the ideal choice for puppies with food-related allergies.

A proprietary supplements blend has been included in this formula to provide support for good digestion and a healthy immune system in the growing Shiba Inu pup.


  • Owners love the size of the pieces of kibble in this food, sharing that it is easy for their puppies to chew and swallow without any fear of choking.
  • Many owners report puppies enjoy the taste of this food and look forward to every meal.
  • Several people expressed that they were pleased that they found a high quality food they could feed to both their adult dogs and puppies without having to compromise on nutrition or quality.
  • Some owners share that their puppies’ stool quality improved when transitioned to this diet.
  • VICTOR Purpose’s grain-free formulation was seen to help puppies with sensitive stomachs see relief from previous gastrointestinal distress.


  • A few owners claim that this high quality dog food is difficult to find in stores; however, it is readily available online and can be delivered.
  • In rare cases, some puppies exhibited low energy and poor stool quality when fed this diet. This may be the result of a transition process that was too quick for the puppy to adjust well.
  • Some owners express their dogs have seen an increase in flatulence since a switch to this food.
  • Some puppies were uninterested in this food and would not eat it. This is likely simply a matter of preference.
  • Very rarely, a few owners commented that the color of the kibble was off putting to them.

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How to Choose the Best Dog Food for Shiba Inu Puppies

Shiba Inu puppies have energy to spare, and they need a diet that will support both their activity requirements and their developing bodies. A breed prized for its impressive musculature and athletic grace, the Shiba requires a diet with an emphasis on high-quality proteins to thrive.

During the puppy stage, the average Shiba will range in weight from 5 to 20 pounds. To help fuel this active pup, meals should consist of smaller portions of the best dog food for Shiba Inu puppies fed more frequently throughout the day.

Dietary Requirements for Shiba Inu Puppy Foods

Shiba Inu puppies need a diet that is rich in high-quality proteins to fuel their important developmental periods. Proteins are ideally sourced from lean meats but can also be obtained from meat meals. Any diet for the Shiba Inu puppy should contain an animal-based protein as its main ingredient.

Fiber also plays an important role in the Shiba Inu puppy’s diet. Fiber assists puppies with maintaining optimal digestion and can also provide energy to help keep the Shiba Inu primed for performance.

Carbohydrates are another critical building block in the ideal food for a Shiba Inu puppy. Shiba puppies can be prone to allergies, and if your puppy is showing signs of itchy red skin or a gut upset, it’s best to discuss their diet with a veterinarian.

No diet is complete for the Shiba puppy without the addition of healthy fats and essential supplements to ensure the food is complete and properly balanced. The best fats are sourced from animal origins and can include such ingredients as chicken fat and oils from fish such as mackerel and salmon. Plant-based oils may also be used as sources of omega 3 and 6 fatty acids.

The best dog food for Shiba Inu puppies is a nutritionally-balanced diet, specially formulated for small breed puppies, to support a healthy rate of growth.

Things to Look for in the Best Dog Food for Shiba Inu Puppies

Here is a basic list of the most important things to look for in the best food for a Shiba Inu puppy:

  • Complete proteins listed at the beginning of the ingredients list

Shiba puppies require a diet that places a high emphasis on high-quality proteins. Whole proteins are preferable, but meat meals are also an excellent source of this important dietary building block.

  • Enriched with probiotics and helpful supplements

To help a Shiba Inu puppy to digest its food and to grow, the dog’s diet must be well-rounded through the addition of vitamins, minerals, and helpful supplements.

Glucosamine and chondroitin provide support for a puppy’s joints while probiotics and prebiotics work hand in hand to promote proper digestion.

  • Meets AAFCO nutritional requirements for a complete and balanced food

All puppy foods considered for the Shiba Inu pup should bear the AAFCO seal of approval, indicating it is a complete and balanced diet.

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