The 5 Best Dog Foods For Pugs

By Amber Smith
Apr 20, 2023 6:00 AMApr 20, 2023 4:07 PM
beef recipe


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Our team went out into the field looking for the best canine nutrition products in the world. Our winner for this year is Pupper, which topped our charts in terms of ingredient quality as well as science backed claims.

Pugs are a favorite small breed dog for millions of people across the globe, and they were originally bred to be companion dogs for the ruling families of ancient China. In fact, pugs are thought to date back to the Han Dynasty in China, which lasted from about B.C. 206 to A.D. 200. Pugs were then imported from China/Asia to Europe sometime around the sixteenth century and have since made their way around the world. Their wrinkled, smushed face is a key feature, and they’re one of the most recognizable breeds on the planet. 

Pugs are considered small breed dogs, which means they’re subject to many of the health concerns that breeds of their kind can experience. This includes things like obesity, joint problems, heart problems, and more. The best way to keep your pug healthy is by feeding him a rich, nutritious diet with only the best ingredients in his food. Natural, sustainably sourced ingredients are always better, and we’ve included five small breed dog food varieties today that use only the finest ingredients.

Ingredients Matter 

What’s in your dog food matters a lot more than you may think. Dog food is often made with things like meat by-products, which can be incredibly harmful to your pup’s health. Filler ingredients, like grains, often make up the bulk of cheaper dog food, and it’s easy to see the difference between that grocery store brand and the five on this list. With real meat as the number one ingredient, each of these dog food blends is a perfect option for pugs, and a few of them are even entirely grain-free.

The problem with today’s dog food market is that there are too many cheap brands available that use sub-par ingredients, and we’ve been taught that while dogs are our best friends, they still don’t “need” human-grade food. The fact is, feeding your dog cheap, grain-filled foods only adds to their potential health complications. Obesity is a problem for humans, with over 40 percent of U.S. adults being overweight or obese, and dogs are suffering, too. Choosing higher-quality foods ensures your pug has a longer, healthier, happier life. There’s nothing “cute” about an overweight dog, and the pup is likely suffering from joint problems, among other things. 

It’s important as your pup’s owner that you read the ingredients labels on the food you buy. Stay away from “by-products” that many cheaper brands use to fill out their kibble. Be sure the food you’re choosing is rich in vitamins like A, C, D, and E, packed with nutrients like protein, fiber, and Omega-3s, and is sourced naturally and sustainably. 

Luckily, the web has provided us with a large marketplace of high-quality foods available for direct shipping. Don’t be afraid to take some extra time to research your dog’s food before you buy. Your wallet will thank you for saving potential healthcare costs, and your pug will be grateful for healthier, great-tasting foods.

Best Dog Foods For Pugs 

The best dog foods for pugs are available online, and, in some cases, in stores. Each of these options offers shipping options, so you can give your pug the best no matter where you are in the U.S. It’s important to start taking our dogs’ health more seriously, and the first step to doing so is to monitor their diet. Any time you switch dog foods, you’ll want to at least notify your vet, so that he or she can monitor any health effects the new food might be having. 

Let’s move on to our list of the top five best dog foods for pugs!

1. Pupper Beef Topper 

Pupper is a brand that’s dedicated to using only healthy, wholesome ingredients in every batch of premium dog food. You won’t find any fillers, additives, or artificial ingredients here, and real meat is always the first ingredient. This premium beef recipe is tasty, a great value for humans, and offers optimal nutrition to pugs of all sizes and ages. This is the perfect dog food option for anyone looking to seriously upgrade their pug’s diet, and one of the healthiest dog foods on the market today. Wholesome ingredients make a huge difference! 

Key Ingredients 

Real beef: Naturally sourced, real beef for protein and other vitamins and minerals and flavor.

Kelp: Rich sea kelp to provide your pup with optimal Omega-3s for heart, skin, coat, and joint health. 

Barley and Flax: Healthy grain and fiber sources that won’t fatten your pup up. 

Carrots, Beets, Cranberries: Healthy fruits and vegetables for both fiber and flavor, as well as necessary vitamins and nutrients.

Full Ingredients: Beef, beef heart, beef liver, barley, flax, carrots, beets, cranberries, parsley, sea salt, kelp, mixed tocopherols, vitamins, and minerals

Where To Buy: Pupper’s beef blend, as well as the brand’s delicious chicken blend, are both available with direct shipping from

Price: A 1-lb bag of Pupper Beef Blend is just $34.99.

Ingredients: Chippin’s whole, all-natural ingredients are perfect for pugs. Featuring omega-3 rich USA wild caught silver carp as the #1 ingredient, combined with gut healthy foods and dog favorites like pumpkin, oats, flaxseed, and spinach. This pawsome food is anti-allergen & oven-baked.

Price/Where To Buy: Score this healthy, eco-conscious food at There, you can find a 3.5 lb. bag for just $32.99 (+ save 10% when you subscribe). You’ll also find all of Chippin’s drool-worthy dog jerky & oven-baked treats packed with novel proteins like cricket and spirulina.

The Difference: Crafted with a highly nutritious but overpopulated fish in USA waterways, feeding your dog Chippin helps to restore biodiversity and protect the Great Lakes. This all-natural recipe is great for pugs while helping to restore wildlife biodiversity in the USA.

3. Earthborn Holistic Small Breed Dry Dog Food 

Earthborn Holistic is a brand trusted by millions of pet owners across the country for its consistency, quality, and sustainable practices. Earthborn aims to create the best dog foods with a more holistic approach to its ingredients, sourcing everything naturally whenever possible. Free of harmful dyes, fillers, and additives, this is the perfect option for concerned pet owners who are tired of buying the grocery store brand. This small breed dry dog food contains delicious turkey and brown rice for a flavor dogs love. 

Key Ingredients 

Turkey meal: Made from premium turkey cuts for protein and flavor. 

Brown Rice: A whole-grain perfect for providing fiber and vital nutrients.

Pacific Whiting Meal: An Omega-3-rich fish for flavor and potent Omega-3s. 

Cranberries, apples, carrots, spinach: Delicious fruits and veggies provide vitamins, minerals, and fiber. 

Full Ingredients: Turkey meal, brown rice, dried egg, tapioca, canola oil (preserved with mixed tocopherols), pearled barley, oatmeal, pacific whiting meal, flaxseed, dried yeast, natural flavors, blueberries, cranberries, apples, carrots, spinach, salt, potassium chloride, choline chloride, dicalcium phosphate, dl-methionine, l-lysine, taurine, l-carnitine, beta-carotene, vitamin a supplement, vitamin D3 supplement, vitamin E supplement, zinc sulfate, ferrous sulfate, niacin, folic acid, biotin, manganese sulfate, copper sulfate, calcium pantothenate, thiamine mononitrate, pyridoxine hydrochloride, riboflavin supplement, l-ascorbyl-2-polyphosphate (source of vitamin C), zinc proteinate, manganese proteinate, copper proteinate, calcium iodate, sodium selenite, cobalt carbonate, vitamin B12 supplement, yucca schidigera extract, rosemary extract, dried enterococcus faecium fermentation product, dried lactobacillus casei fermentation product, dried lactobacillus acidophilus fermentation product.

Where To Buy: This product is available from Chewy, PetCo, Amazon, and more. 

Price: This product comes in a 4 or 12.5-lb bag, and costs $16.99 and $31.99 respectively (

4. Annamaet Original Small Breed Formula Dry Dog Food 

Annamaet has over 30 years in the pet food industry, providing plenty of experience and wisdom to their production processes to create some of the best dog and cat food money can buy. The brand stands by a strict standard of quality, and the customers have nothing but great things to say about this holistic brand. Every ingredient is tested for quality and fit for humans. All of Annamaet’s products are corn, wheat, and soy-free. All meats are sourced sustainably and premium meat is always the first ingredient. This small breed dry dog food formula brings the delicious flavor of chicken, brown rice, and herring together for a taste your pug will love. 

Key Ingredients 

Premium chicken meal: Sourced from prime chicken cuts for protein and flavor. 

Brown Rice: An important whole-grain rich in fiber and other nutrients. 

Herring Meal: Herring is an Omega-3-rich fish. 

Flax Seed Meal: An important source of fiber for your pug. 

Full Ingredients: Chicken meal, brown rice, chicken fat (preserved with mixed tocopherols), whole dry eggs, herring meal, millet, dried beet pulp, brewers dried yeast, menhaden oil (preserved with mixed tocopherols), dried apples, flaxseed meal, natural flavor, lecithin, dried chicory root, marine microalgae, salt, dl methionine, dried blueberries, dried cranberries, potassium chloride, l-lysine, taurine, lactobacillus acidophilus fermentation product dehydrated, vitamin E supplement, l-ascorbyl-2-polyphosphate (source of vitamin C), niacin supplement, biotin, thiamine mononitrate, l-carnitine, D-calcium pantothenate, riboflavin supplement, pyridoxine hydrochloride, vitamin A acetate, vitamin B12 supplement, vitamin D3 supplement, folic acid, choline chloride, zinc proteinate, betaine anhydrous, iron proteinate, selenium yeast, copper proteinate, manganese proteinate, calcium iodate, yucca schidigera extract. 

Where To Buy: This product is available from Chewy, Amazon, PetFlow, and more. 

Price: Available in 4 and 12-lb bags for $13.99 and $34.99 (

5. Castor & Pollux ORGANIX Organic Small Breed Recipe Grain-Free Dry Dog Food 

When it comes to organic dog food, Castor and Pollux leads the way with ORGANIX blends. Made with USDA-certified organic ingredients, this blend provides optimal nutrition and maximum ingredient quality for a price you’ll love. Organic chicken is the first ingredient in this small breed recipe, making it both tasty and healthy for your pug. 

Key Ingredients 

Organic Chicken: Organic meats are of a higher quality, use fewer (or no) antibiotics and steroids, and the animals live better, happier lives before slaughter. 

Organic Sweet Potatoes: Sweet potatoes are just tasty, and doggos love the extra flavor. Not to mention, organic veggies are healthier and less laden with toxic chemicals like fertilizers and pesticides. 

Organic Flaxseed: An organic source of fiber for your pup. 

Full Ingredients: Organic chicken, organic chicken meal, organic sweet potatoes, organic potatoes, organic peas, organic tapioca, organic chicken fat, organic sunflower seed meal, organic pea protein, organic flaxseed, natural flavor, organic sunflower oil, organic chicken liver, organic blueberries, organic chicory root (source of inulin), salt, vitamins (vitamin E supplement, niacin supplement, thiamine mononitrate, D-calcium pantothenate, vitamin A supplement, pyridoxine hydrochloride, riboflavin supplement, vitamin D3 supplement, biotin, vitamin B12 supplement, folic acid), minerals (zinc methionine complex, calcium carbonate, zinc sulfate, iron proteinate, ferrous sulfate, copper proteinate, copper sulfate, manganese proteinate, sodium selenite, manganous oxide, calcium iodate, ethylenediamine dihydroiodide), choline chloride, taurine, potassium chloride, organic amaranth, mixed tocopherols for freshness, dried bacillus coagulans fermentation product. 

Where To Buy: This product is available from Chewy, PetCo, PetFlow, and more. 

Price: Available in a 4 or 10-lb bag for about $17 or $47 respectively. Free shipping on Chewy if your order is over $49.

Bonus: Solid Gold Wee Bit Bison & Brown Rice Recipe with Pearled Barley Small Breed Dry Dog Food 

Started in 1974, Solid Gold pet foods had a simple mission: to create delicious, nutritious dog foods to keep pups everywhere happy and healthy. Since then, the brand has become the gold standard of pet foods, using only natural, holistic ingredients with a serious commitment to quality and value. This delicious and affordable small breed recipe is made with premium bison meat and brown rice for maximum nutritional value and flavor for your pug. 

Key Ingredients 

Bison: Bison is the first ingredient and is loaded with protein and other nutrients from premium cuts of this wild-roaming buffalo. 

Fish Meal: Made from premium fish sources, this provides important Omega-3s for your pug’s health. 

Salmon Meal: Salmon is rich in lean proteins and Omega-3s. 

Full Ingredients: Bison, ocean fish meal, peas, oatmeal, chicken fat (preserved with mixed tocopherols), pea protein, brown rice, pearled barley, dried eggs, salmon meal, tomato pomace, flaxseed, rice bran, natural flavor, choline chloride, potassium chloride, salmon oil (preserved with mixed tocopherols), dried chicory root, carrots, pumpkin, parsley, apples, cranberries, blueberries, lettuce, celery, beets, watercress, spinach, broccoli, spearmint, almond oil (preserved with mixed tocopherols), sesame oil (preserved with mixed tocopherols), yucca schidigera extract, dried kelp, thyme, lentils, vitamin A supplement, vitamin D3 supplement, vitamin E supplement, zinc sulfate, niacin, ferrous sulfate, l-ascorbyl-2-polyphosphate (source of vitamin C), calcium pantothenate, thiamine mononitrate, copper sulfate, riboflavin, pyridoxine hydrochloride, manganese sulfate, zinc proteinate, folic acid, calcium iodate, manganese proteinate, copper proteinate, sodium selenite, biotin, vitamin B12 supplement, rosemary extract, dried lactobacillus acidophilus fermentation product, dried bifidobacterium animalis fermentation product, dried lactobacillus reuteri fermentation product. 

Where To Buy: This product is available on Chewy, PetCo, and PetFlow. 

Price: Available in a 4 or 12-lb bag, which costs $18.99 and $37.99 respectively.

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