6 best dog food for dogs with dry skin in 2024

By Amber Smith
Jan 1, 2024 4:00 AMJan 1, 2024 6:33 PM
Pupper Fuel Dog Food


Sign up for our email newsletter for the latest science news

Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links. 

Is your furry friend suffering from uncomfortable and itchy dry skin? Don't fret! The solution may lie in their food bowl. Choosing the right dog food can work wonders in alleviating dry skin issues and promoting a healthy coat and good skin. After all, proper nutrition plays a vital role in maintaining overall canine well-being.

Welcome to our comprehensive guide on finding the best dog food for dogs with dry skin. We understand that your four-legged companion's comfort is of utmost importance to you. That's why we've curated this resource to help you navigate through the overwhelming options available.

By incorporating high-quality ingredients like salmon meal into their diet, you can provide essential nutrients that promote healthy skin and alleviate dryness. So, let's dive into our expert recommendations and find the perfect dog food tailored to address your pup's specific needs.

Remember, a happy dog starts with nourished skin! Let's embark on this journey together, ensuring your furry friend enjoys optimal comfort and vitality.

Best Dog Food For Dogs With Dry Skin

  1. Pupper Fuel Dog Food

  2. Diamond Naturals Skin & Coat Dry Dog Food

  3. Royal Canin Adult Ultamino Dry Dog Food

  4. Blue Buffalo Natural Veterinary Diet NP Novel Protein Alligator

  5. Iams Proactive Health Adult Dry Dog Food

  6. Open Farm

Recognizing Symptoms of Dry Skin in Dogs

Dry skin is a common condition that affects many dogs, causing discomfort and irritation. It's essential for pet owners to be able to recognize the symptoms of dry skin so they can take appropriate action to alleviate their furry friend's discomfort. Here are some key signs to watch out for:

Dry, flaky skin is a common symptom of dry skin in dogs.

One of the most obvious indicators of dry skin in dogs is the presence of flakes or scales on their coat. If you notice your dog's fur looking dull and lackluster, with small white particles falling off when touched or brushed, it could be a sign that their skin lacks moisture. This can lead to itching and discomfort for your canine companion.

Excessive scratching or licking may indicate dryness.

When dogs experience dry skin, they often feel compelled to scratch or lick themselves excessively in an attempt to relieve the itchiness. If you observe your dog constantly scratching at certain areas or licking specific spots on its body, it could be a clear indication that they are suffering from dry skin. Persistent scratching can further irritate the skin and even lead to hair loss in severe cases.

Redness and irritation are signs that your dog's skin needs attention.

Another symptom commonly associated with dry skin is redness and irritation on your dog's body. You may notice areas where the skin appears inflamed, swollen, or even slightly raw. These signs suggest that your furry friend's sensitive skin requires proper care and attention.

Pay attention to any changes in your dog's coat condition as it could be a sign of dry skin.

Dryness can affect not only the texture but also the overall appearance of your dog's coat. A once lustrous and shiny coat might become dull and brittle due to insufficient moisture. If you observe such changes in your pet's fur quality, it may indicate an underlying issue with their skin health.

It's important to note that dry skin in dogs can be caused by various factors, including allergies, medical conditions, or environmental factors. If you suspect your dog has dry skin, it is advisable to consult with a veterinarian for a proper diagnosis and treatment plan. They can perform a thorough examination and provide guidance on the best course of action.

What to Look for in Dog Food for Dry Skin

There are a few important factors to consider. By choosing the right dry dog food, you can help promote healthy skin and alleviate discomfort for your furry friend. Here are some key points to look out for when selecting a dog food that supports skin health:

Omega fatty acids are essential for promoting healthy skin and coat.

One of the most crucial elements to consider in dog food for dry skin is the presence of omega fatty acids. These essential nutrients play a vital role in maintaining healthy skin and promoting a lustrous coat. Omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids are particularly beneficial as they help reduce inflammation and moisturize dry skin from within.

Look for dry dog foods that contain natural sources of omega fatty acids such as fish oil or flaxseed. These ingredients provide an excellent source of these essential nutrients, helping to nourish your dog's skin and restore moisture levels.

High-quality protein sources like chicken or fish can benefit dry skin.

Protein is another critical component. Opting for dry food with high-quality protein sources, such as chicken or fish, can be beneficial for dogs with dry skin. Protein helps repair damaged tissues and aids in the production of new cells, contributing to overall skin health.

Consider dog foods that list real meat as their primary ingredient rather than by-products or fillers. This ensures that your pup receives optimal nutrition while also addressing its specific skincare needs.

Avoid artificial additives and fillers that may worsen dryness.

When searching for the best dog food for dogs with dry skin, it's essential to steer clear of artificial additives and fillers. These ingredients can exacerbate existing dryness issues and potentially lead to further irritation or allergies.

Read ingredient labels carefully and avoid foods containing artificial preservatives, colors, or flavors. Instead, opt for natural and wholesome options that prioritize your dog's skin health.

Look for dog foods with added vitamins and minerals to support overall skin health.

To maintain healthy skin, it's crucial to provide your furry companion with a well-rounded diet that includes essential vitamins and minerals. Look for dry dog foods that contain added nutrients specifically aimed at supporting skin health.

Vitamins such as vitamin E and vitamin A help nourish the skin from within, while minerals like zinc contribute to its strength and resilience.

Top Additives for Dog Food and Dry Skin Relief

Fish oil is a game-changer. Rich in omega fatty acids, fish oil provides essential nutrients that nourish the skin from within. These fatty acids help moisturize the skin, reduce inflammation, and promote overall skin health. By adding fish oil as a supplement to your dog's diet, you can witness remarkable improvements in their dry skin.

Coconut oil is another fantastic ingredient that offers relief for dogs suffering from dry and irritated skin. With its natural moisturizing properties, coconut oil helps soothe the discomfort caused by dryness. It acts as an emollient, creating a protective barrier on the skin's surface to lock in moisture and prevent further dehydration. When applied topically or included in their food, coconut oil can work wonders for dogs with dry skin.

Aloe vera has long been known for its soothing properties and it works just as effectively for our furry friends. Aloe vera gel contains vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants that hydrate the skin while reducing inflammation. Its cooling effect brings instant relief to irritated areas on your dog's body. Whether used topically or added to their diet through specialized dog food products, aloe vera can significantly improve your dog's dry skin condition.

Probiotics may not directly target dry skin relief but play a crucial role in supporting overall gut health. A healthy gut translates to improved nutrient absorption and digestion, which indirectly affects the condition of your dog's skin. By promoting a balanced gut microbiome through probiotic supplements or specialized dog food formulas containing probiotics, you are providing support for healthy digestion and nutrient uptake necessary for maintaining healthy and hydrated skin.

When searching for the best dog food options specifically designed to alleviate dry skin issues, keep an eye out for certain ingredients that offer additional benefits:

  • Vitamin D3 supplement: This vitamin aids in regulating calcium and phosphorus levels, which are essential for healthy skin and coat.

  • Mixed tocopherols: These natural antioxidants help protect the skin from free radicals and oxidative damage.

  • Limited ingredient formulas: Choosing dog food with limited ingredients reduces the likelihood of triggering any allergies or sensitivities that may worsen dry skin conditions.

  • Calcium pantothenate: Also known as vitamin B5, this ingredient supports healthy skin by promoting cell regeneration and hydration.

Pupper Fuel Dog Food: Best Overall Choice

Pupper Fuel understands the importance of providing dogs with the best nutrition, especially. Their dog food formula is carefully crafted to cater to the needs of dogs with dry skin, making it our top pick for overall quality and effectiveness.

One of the key reasons why Pupper Fuel stands out is its balanced formula that incorporates high-quality ingredients. This ensures that your furry friend receives all the necessary nutrients they need to thrive. With a focus on real meat as the primary ingredient, such as beef, Pupper Fuel provides a great source of protein for your dog's diet. Protein is essential for maintaining healthy skin and promoting proper cell regeneration.

But what sets Pupper Fuel apart from other dog foods on the market? It's their inclusion of omega fatty acids in their recipe. These fatty acids play a crucial role in nourishing your dog's coat from within, combating dryness, and improving overall fur health. By incorporating omega fatty acids into its formula, Pupper Fuel goes above and beyond to address dry skin concerns effectively.

In addition to supporting healthy skin, this exceptional dog food is packed with essential nutrients that promote overall well-being. Dogs with dry skin often require additional support in maintaining optimal health, and Pupper Fuel delivers just that. Their carefully selected ingredients provide vital vitamins and minerals that contribute to your dog's overall health.

When searching for the best dog food for dogs with dry skin, it's essential to consider whether it contains any fillers or unnecessary additives that could exacerbate the issue. Fortunately, Pupper Fuel prides itself on using only high-quality ingredients without any unnecessary fillers or artificial flavors. This means you can trust that every bite of Pupper Fuel is filled with goodness without compromising on taste or nutritional value.

Furthermore, breed size plays a significant role in determining dietary requirements. Luckily, Pupper Fuel offers options suitable for dogs of all sizes. Whether you have a small breed or a large one, Pupper Fuel has you covered with their range of dog food tailored to meet the specific needs of different breeds.

Another noteworthy ingredient in Pupper Fuel's formula is pumpkin. This natural ingredient not only adds flavor but also provides additional health benefits. Pumpkin is rich in potassium and supports healthy digestion, which can contribute to improved skin health.

Ratings from other dog owners can provide valuable insights.

Diamond Naturals Skin & Coat Dry Dog Food: Runner Up

Diamond Naturals Skin & Coat Dry Dog Food is a fantastic option for dogs with dry skin. This specialized formula is designed to improve the condition of your furry friend's coat and relieve any discomfort caused by dryness.

One of the key features of Diamond Naturals Skin & Coat Dry Dog Food is its optimal levels of omega fatty acids. These essential nutrients play a crucial role in maintaining healthy skin and promoting a shiny coat. By incorporating these omega fatty acids into your dog's diet, you can help alleviate dryness and enhance its overall appearance.

In addition to omega fatty acids, this dog food also contains added antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals. These beneficial ingredients work together to support your dog's overall health. Antioxidants help combat free radicals that can damage cells and contribute to skin issues, while vitamins and minerals provide essential nutrients for a strong immune system and improve skin conditions.

Diamond Naturals Skin & Coat Dry Dog Food uses high-quality ingredients that are carefully selected to deliver maximum benefits. It does not contain any artificial colors or flavors, ensuring that your pup receives only wholesome nutrition without unnecessary additives.

The inclusion of calcium carbonate in this dog food further enhances its benefits for dogs with dry skin. Calcium carbonate helps maintain proper pH levels in the body, which can have a positive impact on the health of your pet's skin.

Follow the recommended serving size based on their weight and activity level. It's important to monitor their response to the new diet closely. You should start noticing improvements in their coat condition within a few weeks as their skin becomes better hydrated and healthier-looking.

Overall, Diamond Naturals Skin & Coat Dry Dog Food is an excellent choice for dogs struggling with dry skin issues. Its specialized formula enriched with omega fatty acids, antioxidants, vitamins, minerals, and calcium carbonate provides comprehensive support for your furry friend's skin health. Say goodbye to dryness and hello to a shiny, lustrous coat with Diamond Naturals Skin & Coat Dry Dog Food.

So, consider giving this runner-up dog food a try and witness the positive changes it can bring to your beloved pet's overall well-being.

Royal Canin Adult Ultamino Dry Dog Food: The Best Hypoallergenic Option

Royal Canin Adult Ultamino Dry Dog Food is a top-notch choice for dogs with dry skin and food allergies. This specially formulated dog food is designed to cater to the unique needs of dogs with sensitive skin or those prone to allergic reactions. Let's dive into why this hypoallergenic option stands out from the rest.

First and foremost, Royal Canin Ultamino features hydrolyzed proteins that are easily digestible by your furry friend. These proteins undergo a process called hydrolysis, which breaks them down into smaller components. As a result, they become less likely to trigger allergic reactions in dogs with food sensitivities. By opting for this dog food, you can provide your beloved pet with essential nutrients without worrying about adverse reactions.

One of the key benefits of Royal Canin Ultamino is its ability to soothe dry skin. Many dogs suffer from dry and itchy skin due to various factors such as allergies or environmental conditions. This hypoallergenic dog food contains ingredients that promote healthy skin and coat, helping alleviate discomfort caused by dryness. Your canine companion will not only enjoy a tasty meal but also experience relief from irritating skin issues.

In addition to addressing dry skin concerns, Royal Canin Ultamino provides complete nutrition for your four-legged friend. It is essential for dogs with sensitive skin or food allergies to receive a balanced diet that meets their nutritional requirements. This dog food offers a comprehensive blend of vitamins, minerals, and other essential nutrients necessary for optimal health.

When comparing different options available on the market, Royal Canin Ultamino emerges as an outstanding choice due to its meticulous formulation and attention to detail. While there are other reputable brands like Purina Pro Plan offering hypoallergenic dog foods, Royal Canin has established itself as a leader in this domain.

To give you a better idea of what Royal Canin Ultamino offers, here are some key ingredients found in this dog food:

  • Dried yeast: Rich in B vitamins and other essential nutrients, dried yeast supports overall skin health and promotes a glossy coat.

  • Calcium iodate: This ingredient provides a source of iodine, which is crucial for proper thyroid function in dogs.

Blue Buffalo Natural Veterinary Diet NP Novel Protein Alligator: A Top Choice for Allergies

Blue Buffalo NP Novel Protein is an excellent option for dogs with dry skin and allergies. This dog food stands out due to its unique protein source, making it suitable for dogs with sensitivities or allergic reactions. The limited ingredient formula of Blue Buffalo NP Novel Protein helps reduce the risk of triggering dry skin symptoms in sensitive dogs.

One of the key features of this dog food is its novel protein source. Instead of commonly used animal proteins like chicken meal, Blue Buffalo utilizes alligator as the primary protein source. This alternative meat protein provides a new and hypoallergenic option for dogs with specific dietary needs. By introducing a different protein source, it minimizes the chances of allergic reactions often associated with more common proteins.

In addition to its novel protein component, Blue Buffalo NP Novel Protein incorporates other essential nutrients to support your dog's overall health and well-being. It contains natural flavors that enhance palatability without relying on artificial additives or fillers. Furthermore, fish oil is included to provide omega-3 fatty acids, which can help improve coat condition and alleviate dry skin issues.

To address potential allergies further, Blue Buffalo NP Novel Protein includes hydrolyzed protein in its formulation. Hydrolyzed proteins have undergone a process that breaks them down into smaller components, reducing their allergenic potential while still providing necessary amino acids. This feature ensures that even highly sensitive dogs can enjoy this dog food without experiencing adverse reactions.

The inclusion of zinc amino acid chelate in Blue Buffalo NP Novel Protein supports healthy skin and coat by promoting proper cell function and tissue repair. Biotin and vitamin B6 are also present to aid in maintaining healthy skin conditions.

Another advantage of this veterinary diet is the addition of digestive enzymes such as protease and amylase. These enzymes assist in breaking down proteins and carbohydrates more efficiently, ensuring optimal nutrient absorption and reducing the likelihood of gastrointestinal discomfort.

Iams Proactive Health is highly regarded by pet owners as an effective option for improving dry skin conditions in dogs. Many dog owners have attested to the positive impact this product has had on their furry friends' skin health.

One of the key reasons why Iams Proactive Health is recommended for dogs with dry skin is its inclusion of omega fatty acids. These essential nutrients are known to support healthy skin and coat development, helping alleviate dryness and itchiness. By incorporating omega fatty acids into their formula, Iams ensures that your dog's skin receives the nourishment it needs to stay moisturized and healthy.

In addition to addressing dry skin concerns, Iams Proactive Health also offers a range of essential nutrients that promote overall vitality in adult dogs. This means that while tackling dry skin issues, your canine companion will also benefit from a well-rounded diet that supports their overall health and well-being.

This dog food stands out as a reliable choice. It contains ingredients such as manganese sulfate, ferrous sulfate, and copper sulfate, which aid in maintaining a healthy digestive system. A balanced gut contributes to better absorption of nutrients, ensuring your dog gets the most out of every meal.

Furthermore, Iams Proactive Health can be particularly beneficial for dogs with specific health conditions related to their skin. If your veterinarian has prescribed a special diet due to certain sensitivities or allergies causing your dog's dry skin, this product may be a suitable option. However, always consult with your vet before making any changes to your pet's diet or introducing new products.

For prospective buyers seeking the best dog food for dogs with dry skin, Iams Proactive Health should definitely be considered due to its positive reputation among pet owners. It provides a comprehensive solution by targeting dryness while also supporting overall health and digestion.

To summarize:

  • Iams Proactive Health is highly recommended by pet owners for dogs with dry skin.

  • It contains omega fatty acids to support healthy skin and coat development.

  • Dog food includes essential nutrients to promote overall vitality in adult dogs.

  • It aids in maintaining digestive health with ingredients like manganese sulfate, ferrous sulfate, and copper sulfate.

  • For dogs with specific health conditions related to their skin, this product may be a suitable option.

Open Farm: The Best Plant-Based Dog Food for Allergies

Open Farm understands that some dogs suffer from food allergies or sensitivities to animal proteins, which can cause discomfort and skin issues such as dryness. That's why they have developed a plant-based dog food option specifically tailored to address these concerns.

One of the key features of Open Farm's recipe is the inclusion of nutrient-rich ingredients like lentils and peas. These ingredients not only provide essential vitamins and minerals but also help nourish the skin from within. By focusing on plant-based sources of nutrition, Open Farm offers a viable solution for dogs with dry skin caused by food allergies.

Food allergies in dogs can manifest in various ways, including itchy skin, rashes, and digestive issues. Animal proteins are often the main culprits behind these allergic reactions. Open Farm's plant-based diet eliminates common allergens found in traditional dog foods, making it an excellent choice for allergy-prone dogs.

When searching for suitable food options for your furry friend with dry skin, it's crucial to consult with a veterinarian who can diagnose any specific allergens affecting your dog. However, Open Farm has designed its formula to be free from common allergens such as dairy and alfalfa meal. This ensures that even dogs with severe food allergies can find relief through this specialized diet.

The inclusion of flaxseed and sunflower oil in Open Farm's recipe further contributes to improving your dog's skin health. These ingredients are rich sources of omega-3 fatty acids, which play a vital role in maintaining healthy skin and reducing inflammation associated with allergies. By incorporating these essential fats into their formula, Open Farm helps alleviate dryness while meeting your dog's nutritional needs.

Switching your dog to a plant-based diet may seem like a drastic change; however, many pet owners have reported positive results after making the switch. The Honest Kitchen is another brand renowned for its plant-based offerings, and it's worth considering as an alternative to Open Farm. Ultimately, finding the best dog food for your pet's dry skin is a matter of trial and error, as different dogs may react differently to various ingredients.

Our Criteria for Ranking the Best Dog Food

Choosing the right dog food is essential for your pet's health and well-being. With the plethora of options available in the market, it can be challenging to determine which dog food is best for your furry friend. To simplify this process and help you make an informed decision, we have established a set of criteria for ranking the best dog food products. These criteria are based on scientific research, expert opinions, and the specific nutritional needs of dogs.

  • Nutritional Balance:

    • Complete and Balanced: The dog food must meet the Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO) guidelines for a complete and balanced diet, ensuring it provides all essential nutrients in the right proportions.

  • Ingredients Quality:

    • High-Quality Protein: The primary ingredient should be a high-quality animal protein source, such as chicken, beef, or fish, to support your dog's muscle development and overall health.

    • Whole Grains and Vegetables: Whole grains and vegetables should be included to provide essential carbohydrates, fiber, vitamins, and minerals.

  • Absence of Fillers and Artificial Additives:

    • No Fillers: The best dog food should not contain fillers like corn, soy, or wheat, which offer limited nutritional value and may cause allergies.

    • No Artificial Additives: It should be free from artificial colors, flavors, and preservatives, which can harm your dog's health over time.

  • Meat Meal vs. Whole Meat:

    • Preference for Whole Meat: Whole meat sources are preferred over meat meals or by-products, as they are less processed and retain more nutritional value.

  • Digestibility and Allergen Consideration:

    • Hypoallergenic Options: For dogs with allergies or sensitivities, hypoallergenic options that avoid common allergens like poultry or grains should be available.

    • High Digestibility: The dog food should be highly digestible to ensure your pet absorbs the maximum nutrients from each meal.

  • Life Stage Appropriateness:

    • Age and Size-Specific Formulations: The best dog food should offer formulations tailored to your dog's life stage (puppy, adult, senior) and size (small, medium, large).

  • Transparency and Sourcing:

    • Transparent Labeling: Brands should provide transparent information about ingredient sourcing and processing methods.

    • Sustainable and Ethical Sourcing: A commitment to sustainable and ethical sourcing of ingredients reflects a brand's responsibility toward animal welfare and the environment.

  • Health Benefits and Special Considerations:

    • Support for Special Health Needs: The best dog food may offer formulations to address specific health concerns, such as joint health, dental care, or weight management.

  • Customer Feedback and Reviews:

    • Positive User Experiences: Customer feedback and reviews are valuable indicators of a product's performance, safety, and palatability.

  • Price and Value:

    • Affordability: The cost of the dog food should be reasonable and commensurate with its quality and ingredients, offering good value for pet owners.

  • Recall History and Safety:

    • Safety Record: Brands with a history of recalls or safety issues should be viewed with caution, as the safety of your pet is paramount.

Conclusion: Finding the Best Dog Food for Dogs with Dry Skin

In conclusion, finding the best dog food for dogs with dry skin is crucial for their comfort and overall health. By considering the symptoms, ingredients, and specific needs of your furry friend, you can make an informed decision that will address their dry skin issues effectively.

Take action today to provide your dog with the nourishment they need for healthy skin and happy life.


Why do dogs develop dry skin?

Dry skin in dogs can result from various factors such as allergies, nutritional deficiencies, environmental conditions, or underlying health issues. It's essential to identify the root cause to determine appropriate treatment options.

How can I recognize if my dog has dry skin?

You may notice symptoms like excessive itching, flakiness, redness, or dull coat. If you observe these signs persistently, it's advisable to consult a veterinarian for a proper diagnosis.

Can changing my dog's diet improve their dry skin condition?

Yes! Switching to a high-quality dog food specifically formulated for dry skin can greatly improve your dog's condition. Look for ingredients that promote healthy skin and coat.

Are there any natural remedies I can try for my dog's dry skin?

Yes! Natural remedies like fish oil or coconut oil supplements can help moisturize your dog's skin from within. However, it's important to consult with your vet before introducing any new supplements into your pet's diet.

More From Discover
Recommendations From Our Store
Shop Now
Stay Curious
Our List

Sign up for our weekly science updates.

To The Magazine

Save up to 40% off the cover price when you subscribe to Discover magazine.

Copyright © 2024 Kalmbach Media Co.