5 Best Dog Foods For Shih Tzu Puppies

In this guide we’ll take a look at the best dog food for Shih Tzu 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 Shih Tzu Puppies?

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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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Shih Tzu Puppy Food Reviews

Wellness Small Breed Complete Health Puppy Turkey, Oatmeal & Salmon Meal Recipe Dry Dog Food review

At a Glance

  • Top 5 Ingredients:
    1. Deboned Turkey
    2. Chicken Meal
    3. Oatmeal
    4. Salmon Meal
    5. Barley

  • Type: Dry food
  • Lifestage: Puppy
  • Calories: 489 kcal/cup
  • Protein: 28%
  • Fat: 19%
  • Fiber: 4.25%

Wellness Complete Health Small Breed Puppy Recipe is the ideal food to meet the Shih Tzu puppy’s nutritional needs. A diet that is well-balanced, Wellness is a protein-rich food formulation that takes whole, deboned turkey as its primary meat. Salmon meal is also included in this recipe, a meat that is rich in DHA to support optimal cognitive development.

This diet’s carbohydrates are derived from easily digestible whole grains such as oatmeal and barley. The kibble pieces are bite-sized, making them easy to chew and swallow and less likely to pose a choking hazard.

With so many nutritional benefits to commend it, it is easy to see why Wellness is included on a list of the best dog foods for Shih Tzu puppies.

Pros

  • Owners rave that their puppies love the flavor of this food, and their growth rate is healthy and normal.
  • Many owners remark that they feel the price is reasonable particularly for such a high quality puppy food.
  • The coat quality of puppies regularly fed Wellness Small Breed Complete Health was soft, shiny, and healthy.
  • Owners like the size of the kibble pieces, noting their formulation is ideal for small breed puppies like the Shih Tzu.
  • Some puppies enjoy this food so much that it can be used for meals and for training treats.

Cons

  • Some puppies do not like the taste of this food and will not eat it. They may prefer another Wellness puppy formulation that includes a different protein as its base.
  • Some owners felt the kibble pieces were too hard for their puppies to break down well.
  • In rare cases, some puppies experienced mild bouts of gastrointestinal distress when fed this diet. This may be as a result of too quick a change from their previous diet.
  • The size of the kibble pieces was concerning for some owners who felt they were too large for small puppies to eat without possibly choking.
  • A few owners expressed this diet would be better with added supplements to promote optimal joint health in Shih Tzu puppies.

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Holistic Select Small & Mini Breed Puppy Health Anchovy, Sardine & Chicken Meals Recipe Dry Dog Food review

At a Glance

  • Top 5 Ingredients:
    1. Anchovy and Sardine Meal
    2. Chicken Meal
    3. Chickpeas
    4. Peas
    5. Chicken Fat (preserved with Mixed Tocopherols)

  • Type: Dry food
  • Lifestage: Puppy
  • Calories: 481 kcal/cup
  • Protein: 30%
  • Fat: 20%
  • Fiber: 3.4%

Holistic Select Small & Mini Breed Puppy hits all the high points of a food that is uniquely designed to meet the needs of the growing Shih Tzu puppy.  A food formulation that is rich in both protein and healthy fats, Holistic Select’s main protein source is anchovy and sardine meal, two meats that are high in omega 3 and 6 fatty acids as well as DHA.

A grain-inclusive diet, the carbohydrates in this food are derived from whole grains that are easy for the Shih Tzu puppy to process and utilize.

Holistic Select, considered to be one of the best dog foods for Shih Tzu puppies, contains no by-products, wheat, fillers, artificial flavors, colors, or preservatives.

Pros

  • Owners note that their puppies love the taste of this food and look forward to their meals every day.
  • The size of the kibble pieces is ideal for toy and small breed puppies like the Shih Tzu.
  • Several owners note that their puppies’ stool quality greatly improved with a switch to Holistic Select Small & Mini Breed Puppy.
  • Owners are pleased with the price of this food though slightly more expensive than some other brands. It is the general consensus that this food offers premium tier nutrition at an affordable price.
  • Owners report that their puppies’ coats are shiny, soft, and healthy when consistently fed this diet.

Cons

  • Some owners expressed their puppies had an unpleasant breath after eating this food. This is likely due to the fact that this recipe is heavily fish-based.
  • Some puppies disliked this food and would not eat it. This may simply be a matter of personal preference.
  • A few owners expressed concern about the absence of grains in this diet, preferring a grain-inclusive recipe for their puppies.
  • Several owners felt this food was pricey.
  • Some owners would prefer a puppy food that has added supplements to support joint health in puppies.

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American Journey Puppy Chicken & Sweet Potato Recipe Grain-Free Dry Dog Food review

At a Glance

  • Top 5 Ingredients:
    1. Deboned Chicken
    2. Chicken Meal (a source of Glucosamine and Chondroitin Sulfate)
    3. Turkey Meal
    4. Peas
    5. Chickpeas

  • Type: Dry food
  • Lifestage: Puppy
  • Calories: 380 kcal/cup
  • Protein: 30%
  • Fat: 12%
  • Fiber: 5%

American Journey Grain-Free Puppy Food delivers a powerhouse punch of nutrition to enrich the health and development of the Shih Tzu puppy. This diet is free from grains, taking its carbohydrates from highly digestible fruits and vegetables of exceptional quality.

American Journey contains no wheat, corn, or soy, making it one of the best foods for Shih Tzu puppies. A food that is free from any filler foods, this formulation is unlikely to cause any stomach distress in a Shih Tzu puppy.

Both salmon oil and flaxseed have been added to this food to boost its omega 3 and 6 fatty acids and DHA to provide support for cognitive development and healthy skin and coat.

Pros

  • Owners note their puppies love the flavor of this food, licking their bowls clean each meal.
  • Puppies that previously struggled with gastrointestinal distress found relief from their symptoms when fed a regular diet of American Journey Grain-Free Puppy.
  • Owners are pleased with the quality of their puppies’ stool when regularly fed this diet.
  • Puppies with issues with recurring itching had healthy, well-hydrated skin when fed this diet on a consistent basis.
  • Some puppies that had struggled with anal gland issues saw this issue remedied when fed American Journey Grain-Free Puppy.

Cons

  • Some owners found their puppies’ stool was quite large when fed a steady diet of American Journey Grain-Free Puppy.
  • Some owners feel the kibble pieces are quite hard, requiring some softening before feeding to their puppies.
  • Some puppies do not like the taste of this food and will not eat it. A switch to another American Journey puppy food with a different protein base may yield better results.
  • Some owners felt the kibble was quite dark and found its appearance off putting.
  • A few owners remarked that the kibble pieces were quite large and expressed concerns they may be a potential choking hazard.

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Taste of the Wild Pacific Stream Puppy Formula Grain-Free Dry Dog Food review

At a Glance

  • Top 5 Ingredients:
    1. Salmon
    2. Ocean Fish Meal
    3. Sweet Potatoes
    4. Peas
    5. Potatoes

  • Type: Dry food
  • Lifestage: Puppy
  • Calories: 360 kcal/cup
  • Protein: 27%
  • Fat: 15%
  • Fiber: 5%

Taste of the Wild Pacific Stream Puppy Formula Grain-Free Dry Dog Food is a high protein food that contains all of the vital nutrients Shih Tzu puppies need during their critical developmental periods. Salmon is the primary protein source, a meat that provides omega 3 and 6 fatty acids as well as DHA.

A grain-free food, fruits and vegetables provide important carbohydrates that are high in dietary fiber to promote good digestion.

Taste of the Wild has no grains, corn, wheat, fillers, artificial colors, flavors, or preservatives. Probiotics are included in this formulation to help support digestive processes.

Pros

  • Owners report that puppies fed this diet have beautiful coats and healthy skin.
  • Puppies love this diet and look forward to licking their bowl clean at every meal.
  • Most owners report their puppies grow at an appropriate rate when consistently fed a diet of Taste of the Wild Pacific Stream Puppy.
  • Puppies enjoy better energy levels with a change to this diet.
  • Owners feel this diet is available at a very reasonable price point and are pleased to be able to feed their puppies a high performance food affordably.

Cons

  • Some puppies are disinterested in this food and won’t eat it. Taste of the Wild has a wide range of puppy food formulations that include many different proteins as their base. One of these diets may be a better fit.
  • A few owners felt this diet was pricey.
  • Several owners expressed they find the kibble pieces were too small for their puppies.
  • A few owners noted that the diet had a smell that was off putting to them.
  • In a few cases, puppies with flatulence did not see any improvements when switched to Taste of the Wild Pacific Stream Puppy.

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Merrick Lil’ Plates Grain-Free Real Chicken & Sweet Potato Puppy Dry Dog Food review

At a Glance

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

  • Type: Dry food
  • Lifestage: Puppy
  • Calories: 397 kcal/cup
  • Protein: 28%
  • Fat: 15%
  • Fiber: 4.5%

Merrick Lil’ Plates Grain-Free Real Chicken & Sweet Potato Puppy Dry Dog Food is the perfect formulation for small breed puppies such as the Shih Tzu. Whole, deboned chicken is the primary ingredient, a protein that is unlikely to lead to stomach distress.

This diet is free from grains and also contains no gluten, artificial colors, flavors, or preservatives. To aid with digestion, both prebiotics and probiotics are included in this recipe. Omega 3 and 6 fatty acids have been enriched to ensure optimal skin and coat health.

DHA is provided to support healthy cognitive development. Merrick’s high emphasis on easily digestible ingredients ensures it a top position on the list of the best dog foods for Shih Tzu puppies with sensitive stomachs.

Pros

  • Owners report that their puppies enjoy the flavor of this Merrick puppy food offering.
  • Several owners expressed that their puppies’ weights were healthy and their growth rate normal when consistently fed Merrick Lil’ Plates Grain-Free Puppy.
  • Owners share they have seen no gastrointestinal distress in their puppies when regularly feeding them this diet.
  • Many owners praise the size of the kibble in this diet, feeling it is the ideal fit for their Shih Tzu puppies.
  • Owners feel this food offers them excellent nutrition and value.

Cons

  • Some puppies find this food unappetizing and will not eat it.
  • A few puppies experienced some mild gastrointestinal distress when fed this food including diarrhea, loose stools, and nausea. This is most likely due to too quick a transition to the new food.
  • Some owners feel this food is a little on the costly side.
  • Some owners prefer a diet that includes whole grains. Merrick does have several puppy formulations which are grain-inclusive. These may be a better choice for some puppies.
  • There are no added supplements to support joint health in the Shih Tzu puppy.

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How to Choose the Best Dog Food for Shih Tzu Puppies

Shih Tzu puppies are cute, little bundles of fun, bringing great joy to their families. As with most puppies, the Shih Tzu pup has energy to spare and requires a high-quality diet to fuel its energy and growth.

Small breed puppies can be prone to overeating, so weighing the best dog food  for Shih Tzu puppies and monitoring all intake is critical to achieving and maintaining a healthy body weight. Free feeding is not a good idea for this toy breed.

Feeding Shih Tzu Puppies

The best dog foods for Shih Tzu puppies will have a feeding guideline that will advise you on how much to feed the puppy as they grow. To ensure the puppy does not become hungry throughout the day, this breed should be fed four to five small meals throughout the day.

Any puppy food for a Shih Tzu pup should contain a minimum of 22 percent protein and 8 percent fat with higher percentages of both optimal. The best dog foods for Shih Tzu puppies are nutritionally balanced to support a healthy rate of growth.

Dietary Requirements for Shih Tzu Puppy Foods

Shih Tzu puppies require a protein-rich diet to thrive. Their ideal diet lists an animal-based protein as one of its first ingredients. Whole meats are the preferred choice, but meat meals are also excellent.

Shih Tzu puppies are easily able to process whole grains as well as fruits and vegetables. The primary importance for carbohydrates included in the best dog food for the Shih Tzu puppy is their ease of digestibility.

One of the most important building blocks in the Shih Tzu puppy’s diet is healthy fats. The most ideal fats are derived from animal sources such as chicken fat or oils from fish such as mackerel, anchovies, or salmon. Certain vegetable oils may also offer beneficial omega 3 and 6 fatty acids.

For their bodies to develop properly, Shih Tzu puppies require the correct ratio of calcium to phosphorus in their food. A puppy formulation specially formulated for small breeds will ensure this requirement is met.

Shih Tzu puppies should be fed a high-quality puppy food as adult formulations are too low in calories and lack the correct nutritional values to meet their specific developmental needs.

Things to Look for in the Best Dog Food for Shih Tzu Puppies

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

  • Whole proteins heading up the ingredients list

Shih Tzu puppies benefit from a diet rich in high-quality proteins. Ideally, a whole lean meat will be one of the first ingredients in any food designed to meet the Shih Tzu puppy’s nutritional needs. Meat meals are also acceptable and can be excellent sources of nutrition.

  • Enriched with probiotics and helpful supplements

All diets can benefit from the addition of supplements to help the food to be well-balanced nutritionally. The best supplements to look for in a high-quality puppy food for the Shih Tzu include glucosamine, chondroitin, prebiotics, and probiotics.

DHA, an acid that assists with cognitive development, can also be a great help to the growing Shih Tzu pup.

  • Meets AAFCO nutritional requirements for a complete and balanced food

All foods appropriate for the Shih Tzu puppy should bear the AAFCO seal of approval, indicating it meets the standards for a complete and balanced food.

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