15 Best Dog Foods for Boston Terriers: Our 2019 In-Depth Feeding Guide

Lovingly nicknamed the “American Gentleman,” the Boston Terrier is a small-breed dog developed in the United States and they have remained popular since their creation.

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The Boston Terrier is known for his black-and-white coat as well as his big, pointed ears. These dogs are friendly and energetic, and they get along with just about everyone, including children and other pets. This breed makes a wonderful companion pet because he is very affectionate, apartment-friendly, and has a low-maintenance coat.

At maturity, the Boston Terrier weighs between 10 and 25 pounds. Despite being a small breed, the Boston Terrier has a surprisingly short lifespan of 11 to 13 years. Feeding your dog a high-quality diet is one of the best ways to keep him healthy for as long as possible, though you should also take the time to learn about potential health problems and how to prevent them from developing.

Keep reading to learn more about your Boston Terrier’s dietary requirements and to see our top 15 picks for the 2019 best dog food for Boston Terriers.

Understanding a Boston Terrier’s Diet Requirements

The Boston Terrier is a small-breed dog which means that he has a fast metabolism with high needs for energy. Fat is the most concentrated source of energy available to dogs, providing 9 calories per gram versus 4 calories per gram for protein. Most dogs need an average of 30 calories per pound of body weight per day, but small and active breeds like the Boston Terrier may need as much as 40 calories per pound of body weight over the course of the day.

Though fat is the main source of energy for your dog, he also needs plenty of protein in his diet. Protein is made up of amino acids which are the building blocks of healthy muscle. This nutrient is best from animal sources (so is fat) because your dog’s body is better able to digest animal products than plant products. Things like meat, poultry, and fish are the best sources of protein for your dog.

  • Puppy Boston Terriers – When your Boston Terrier is a puppy, he will grow very fast so he needs a calorie- and protein-dense diet to support his growth and development. Your puppy needs at least 22% protein and 8% fat, so choose a high-quality small-breed puppy diet for him to eat.
  • Adult Boston Terriers – Once your dog reaches fully size, or around 8 to 12 months of age, you can switch to an adult small-breed recipe that provides at least 18% protein and 5% fat. Higher protein is better to maintain lean muscle mass but be careful of going too high in fat because this breed is prone to obesity with overfeeding.
  • Senior Boston Terriers – As your Boston Terrier gets older, his metabolism may slow down so you might reduce his daily portion or switch to a small-breed senior recipe. With a lifespan of 11 to 13 years, your dog will reach senior status around 7 to 8 years.

In addition to protein and fat, your dog can also benefit from carbohydrates in his diet as long as they are easy to digest. Many Boston Terriers are allergic to grains, so you may want to choose a diet made with grain-free carbohydrates like starchy vegetables, beans, and legumes. You should also look for beneficial supplements like probiotics and chelated minerals.

Special Dietary Considerations for Boston Terriers

The Boston Terrier is generally a healthy breed, but he has a surprisingly short lifespan for a breed of his size. This may be due in part to some of the health problems to which the breed is prone. Most of these issues can be divided into categories such as eye problems, musculoskeletal issues, and anatomical abnormalities.

Here is a quick list of the health problems to which the Boston Terrier may be prone:

  • Allergies
  • Brachycephalic Syndrome
  • Cataracts
  • Cherry Eye
  • Corneal Ulcers
  • Deafness
  • Glaucoma
  • Megaesophagus
  • Patellar Luxation
  • Reverse Sneezing

Let’s take a closer look at some of these health problems.

Boston Terriers are small dogs, but they have big eyes that sometimes look like they are bugging out of the dog’s head. This breed is prone to several eye problems including cataracts, cherry eye, and corneal ulcers. A cataract is an opacity in the eye that partially or completely obstructs vision but is not painful or life-threatening. Cherry eye occurs when the third eyelid prolapses and bulges out – this condition is easy to correct with surgery. Corneal ulcers are also common in the breed due to their bulging eyes.

Though many of the breeds most highly prone to musculoskeletal issues are larger dogs, the Boston Terrier has a fairly high risk for patellar luxation and other joint problems. Patellar luxation is a condition in which the kneecap slips in and out of place, causing pain and inflammation. In mild cases, the condition can be managed by maintaining a healthy body weight and including joint-supporting nutrients like glucosamine and chondroitin in the dog’s diet.

The anatomical abnormalities to which the Boston Terrier is prone can be grouped under a condition called brachycephalic syndrome. This is a condition seen in short-faced breeds which can reduce exercise and heat tolerance in addition to causing respiratory issues. Some of the abnormalities that fall under this category include narrow nostrils, elongated soft palate, and collapsing trachea.

In addition to these health problems, the Boston Terrier is also prone to food allergies and many dogs of this breed have sensitive stomachs. Feeding your dog a high-quality diet formulated for digestibility can help prevent problems, so choose a recipe free from artificial additives and made with natural ingredients such as premium animal proteins, healthy fats, and grain-free carbohydrates.

Boston Terrier Feeding Chart

As a small breed, your Boston Terrier needs anywhere from 30 to 40 calories per pound of body weight. If you want to know exactly how much to feed him, you can use those numbers and the calorie content of the dog food you choose to make some calculations. If you want to avoid the hassle, however, you can simply choose a high-quality small-breed dog food for your Boston Terrier’s life stage and follow the feeding recommendations on the package.

Remember, the amount you feed your dog will vary depending on his age, body weight, and activity level. These things are prone to change over the course of your dog’s life, so check the feeding recommendations if your dog gains or loses weight or every 6 months or so. If you’re not sure how much to feed your Boston Terrier you can always talk to your veterinarian.

The Best Dog Food for Boston Terriers: Our Top 15 Picks for 2019

Now that you have a better understanding of your Boston Terrier’s nutritional needs, you’re ready to start shopping for dog food! Remember, the best Boston Terrier food will be rich in protein and calories, primarily from animal sources, with digestible carbohydrates and beneficial supplements.

Here are our top 15 picks:

Halo Holistic Game Bird Medley Grain-Free Small Breed Recipe

Overall Best Food for Boston Terriers: To ensure balanced nutrition through healthy, wholesome ingredients, try this Halo Holistic Game Bird Medley Grain-Free Small Breed Recipe. This formula is all-natural and designed to nourish your Boston Terrier’s body from the inside out. It features grain-free ingredients like dried lentils and chickpeas with real turkey and duck for protein and flavor. Chicken fat provides a nutrient-rich source of essential fatty acids and the recipe as a whole provides 28% protein and 18% fat. Plus, this recipe contains dried fruits and vegetables as well as chelated minerals for nutritional balance.

  • Pros: Holistic recipe, all-natural grain-free ingredients, real turkey as the main ingredient, nutrient-rich chicken fat, formulated for small breeds, dried fruits and veggies, chelated minerals
  • Cons: Contains some plant proteins, may be too high in fat for some dogs

Whole Earth Farms Grain-Free Small Breed Salmon & Whitefish Recipe

Most Affordable Food: You don’t necessarily need to spend a fortune to provide your Boston Terrier with a high-quality diet and this Whole Earth Farms Grain-Free Small Breed Salmon & Whitefish Recipe is proof of that. This recipe features salmon and whitefish as the main sources of protein which also provide omega fatty acids. The formula is naturally grain-free for digestibility and also free from low-quality fillers and artificial additives. It contains digestible carbohydrates like chickpeas and peas with dried fermentation products for digestive support.

  • Pros: Formulated for small breeds, salmon and whitefish as main ingredients, rich in omega fatty acids, grain-free digestible carbohydrates, no artificial additives, probiotics for digestion
  • Cons: Some dogs may be sensitive to the chicken ingredients

Taste of the Wild Appalachian Valley Small Breed Grain-Free Recipe

Most Popular Food: You can’t go wrong with a popular pick like this Taste of the Wild Appalachian Valley Small Breed Grain-Free Recipe for your Boston Terrier. Not only is it made with all-natural ingredients, but it is grain-free and easy to digest. This recipe features real venison as the main ingredient with digestible grain-free carbohydrates like garbanzo beans and lentils. It also contains supplemental proteins like lamb meal, duck meal, and ocean fish meal to provide a total of 32% protein and 18% fat. This recipe features fresh fruits and veggies as natural sources for key nutrients with chelated minerals for balance and dried fermentation products for probiotic support.

  • Pros: All-natural and grain-free, real venison as the first ingredient, digestible grain-free carbohydrates, several supplemental proteins, rich in protein and fat, fresh fruits and veggies, probiotics
  • Cons: Contains some plant protein (pea protein), main source of fat is plant-based (canola oil)

The Honest Kitchen Grain-Free Turkey Dehydrated Dog Food

Super Premium Food: If you want to feed your Boston Terrier the best of the best, try this The Honest Kitchen Grain-Free Turkey Dehydrated Dog Food. Not only is it made with all-natural, grain-free ingredients but it is dehydrated instead of cooked to preserve more of its natural nutrition. Made with real turkey, fresh fruits and vegetables, and healthy supplements, this recipe is highly digestible with a low risk for triggering your dog’s allergies. It can be expensive, however, so you may want to mix it with a high-quality kibble which will also give you the dental benefits of dry food.

  • Pros: Dehydrated instead of cooked, all-natural and grain-free ingredients, real turkey as the main ingredient, fresh fruits and vegetables, highly digestible
  • Cons: Expensive to feed as a staple diet, some dogs dislike the texture, needs to be rehydrated

Nature’s Variety Instinct LID Grain-Free Small Breed Recipe with Real Lamb

Best Food for Boston Terriers with Allergies: If you know your Boston Terrier has food allergies, look for a grain-free limited ingredient diet like this Nature’s Variety Instinct LID Grain-Free Small Breed Recipe with Real Lamb. This formula is made with a limited number of high-quality natural ingredients, including real lamb as the sole source of animal protein. This recipe is rich in essential fatty acids, including a balance of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids. It also contains freeze-dried organ meats for a boost of flavor and nutrition with chelated minerals to ensure optimal nutrient absorption and balance.

  • Pros: Made with a limited number of ingredients, grain-free recipe, real lamb as the sole source of protein, rich in essential fatty acids, chelated minerals, freeze-dried organ meats
  • Cons: Very expensive to feed as a staple diet, contains some plant protein, main fat is plant-based

Wellness Simple Limited Ingredient Grain-Free Turkey & Potato Small Breed Recipe

Best Food for Boston Terriers with Sensitive Stomachs: Many Boston Terriers have sensitive stomachs and this Wellness Simple Limited Ingredient Grain-Free Turkey & Potato Small Breed Recipe is a great option for those dogs. Not only is it grain-free for digestibility, but it is made with a limited number of ingredients to make it even easier to stomach. This recipe features deboned turkey and turkey meal as the top two ingredients with digestible carbohydrates like potatoes and peas. It is rich in healthy fats and supplemented with chelated minerals as well as probiotics for digestion.

  • Pros: Made with a limited number of ingredients, highly digestible formula, real turkey as the main ingredient, rich in essential fatty acids, chelated minerals, probiotic supplements
  • Cons: Could be a little higher in fat for some dogs, main source of fat is plant-based (canola oil)

3 Top Rated (5 Star) Boston Terrier Adult Foods

Blue Buffalo Wilderness Grain-Free Small Breed Duck Recipe

If you’re looking for a high-protein recipe for your Boston Terrier, consider this Blue Buffalo Wilderness Grain-Free Small Breed Duck Recipe. Not only is it rich in animal protein from duck and chicken meal, but it contains plenty of omega fatty acids as well as glucosamine for joint support. This recipe also features grain-free carbohydrates, fresh fruits and vegetables, and probiotics for digestion.

Canidae Grain-Free PURE Petite Small Breed Lamb Formula

When it comes to limited ingredient diets, this Canidae Grain-Free PURE Petite Small Breed Lamb Formula is a great choice. Not only is it all-natural with a low risk for triggering food allergies, but it is designed specifically for small breeds. This recipe features lamb and lamb meal as the main ingredients with grain-free carbohydrates, plenty of essential fatty acids, and probiotics for digestion.

Go! Sensitivity + Shine LID Grain-Free Turkey Small Breed Recipe

If your Boston Terrier has a sensitive stomach, this Go! Sensitivity + Shine LID Grain-Free Turkey Small Breed could be a good choice. Made with a limited number of ingredients including fresh turkey, lentils, and chickpeas, this all-natural recipe is highly digestible. You’ll also be glad to know that it contains chelated minerals for optimal nutrient absorption and it is rich in natural flavor.

3 Top Rated (5 Star) Boston Terrier Puppy Foods

Blue Buffalo Life Protection Grain-Free Small Breed Puppy Chicken Recipe

If you’re in the market for a quality puppy food that won’t break the bank, this Blue Buffalo Life Protection Grain-Free Small Breed Puppy Chicken Recipe is made with all-natural ingredients and it is surprisingly affordable. This recipe features real chicken as the main ingredient with digestible grain-free carbohydrates and nutrient-rich chicken fat as well as beneficial supplements.

Merrick Lil’ Plates Grain-Free Chicken & Sweet Potato Puppy Recipe

To reduce the risk of your Boston Terrier puppy developing food allergies, try a grain-free recipe like this Merrick Lil’ Plates Grain-Free Chicken & Sweet Potato Puppy Recipe. This recipe features real chicken as the main ingredient with grain-free carbohydrates like sweet potato. Plus, it is uniquely formulated for small-breed puppies and is highly digestible even for sensitive stomachs.

Wellness Complete Health Grain-Free Small Breed Puppy Deboned Turkey Recipe

To ensure that your Boston Terrier puppy gets the nutrients he needs in the right ratios, try this Wellness Complete Health Grain-Free Small Breed Puppy Deboned Turkey Recipe. This formula is designed specifically for small breed puppies to provide complete and balanced nutrition through wholesome ingredients. It features turkey and salmon as healthy sources of protein and fat with digestible carbohydrates like sweet potatoes and oatmeal.

2 Picks for Senior Boston Terrier Foods

Now Fresh Grain-Free Small Breed Senior Recipe

To help manage your Boston Terrier’s weight as he gets older, try this Now Fresh Grain-Free Small Breed Senior Recipe. This recipe is formulated specifically for small breeds, so you can rest assured that it will provide ample protein, but it is moderate in fat to control the calorie content. This recipe also contains L-carnitine for healthy metabolism as well as prebiotics and probiotics for healthy digestion.

Wellness Complete Health Deboned Turkey & Peas Small Breed Senior Recipe

As your Boston Terrier starts to slow down, you’ll want to switch to a senior recipe to keep him from gaining too much weight. This Wellness Complete Health Deboned Turkey & Peas Small Breed Senior Recipe is a great option because it is rich in protein to support lean muscle mass but moderate in fat to control calories. Plus, it is made with digestible ingredients and supplemented with probiotics.

Our FAQ and Boston Terrier Feeding Guide

In addition to choosing a high-quality Boston Terrier diet, you also need to think about how you’re going to feed your dog. Look for a high-quality dog bowl made from durable materials that is easy to clean. Stainless steel and ceramic are generally the best options because they are less likely to scratch and harbor disease-causing bacteria. Stainless-steel is the most durable and the easiest to clean.

You should also think about how you’re going to keep your Boston Terrier’s food fresh because it will start to lose nutritional value as well as it is exposed to air. Fortunately, dog food bags are treated to preserve the food, so all you have to do is put the whole bag in an airtight container and store it in a cool and dry place. Try to avoid just pouring the entire bag into a new container because you’ll lose the benefits of the bag.

And now, here are the answers to some of the most commonly asked questions about feeding a Boston Terrier:

How much food should I feed my Boston Terrier? – When it comes to feeding your Boston Terrier, you’ll be offering him somewhere between ½ and 1 ½ cups of food per day divided over several meals. The actual amount you feed your dog will be determined by his age, weight, and activity level. The best thing to do is start with a small-breed dog food and follow the feeding recommendations. Keep in mind that puppies will eat more than adult dogs and seniors will eat less, so check every few months to see if you need to adjust your dog’s diet.

How many times a day should I feed my Boston Terrier? – As a puppy, your Boston Terrier needs a steady influx of energy, so he may require as many as four meals a day. Once he reaches his full size, you can drop down to three meals per day. When your dog becomes a senior, he might only need two meals a day unless he is still fairly active. Remember, the feeding recommendations on the package are for the whole day, so you’ll need to divide that amount by the desired number of daily meals.

What kind of food do Boston Terriers eat? – When it comes to choosing the best dog food for Boston Terriers, digestibility is key because these dogs often have sensitive stomachs. Wet food tends to be higher in calories and protein than dry food, but it can get stuck in your dog’s teeth and encourage dental problems while dry food can actually help keep your dog’s teeth clean. If you want an all-natural recipe made with premium ingredients, look for a high-quality kibble or a fresh, freeze-dried, or dehydrated dog food. The higher the quality of the ingredients, the more digestible the recipe will be for your dog.

What vegetables are good in a Boston Terrier food? – Though many Boston Terriers are sensitive to grains, vegetables have a low risk for triggering food allergies and sensitivities. Fresh vegetables make a healthy treat for dogs as well, just make sure to feed small amounts and wash everything well before feeding.

Here are some of the best vegetables for Boston Terriers:

  • Asparagus
  • Broccoli
  • Brussels sprouts
  • Carrots
  • Cauliflower
  • Cucumber
  • Green beans
  • Peas
  • Pumpkin
  • Spinach
  • Sweet potato
  • Zucchini

In addition to feeding your dog fresh veggies as a snack, you should look for them in his dog food. Vegetables provide dietary fiber as well as a natural source of vitamins and minerals.

Do Boston Terriers need grain-free dog food? – Though some Boston Terriers are able to digest grains, the breed’s propensity for allergies and sensitive stomach means that a grain-free diet could be a good choice. You might also want to consider feeding your dog a limited ingredient diet to further reduce the risk of allergies. The most important thing is to find a recipe that your dog is able to tolerate and digest properly.

A Final Word

Now that you know the basics about your Boston Terrier’s nutritional needs, you’re ready to start shopping for the best Boston Terrier food. Remember, a high-quality diet for this breed will feature natural ingredients like premium animal proteins, healthy animal fats, digestible grain-free carbohydrates, and beneficial supplements.

If you’re still not sure where to start in choosing the best Boston Terrier dog food, try one of our top 15 picks reviewed above!

1 thought on “15 Best Dog Foods for Boston Terriers: Our 2019 In-Depth Feeding Guide”

  1. Avatar
    Patricia Thompson

    This article is very helpful…. Thankyou. What I would like to know is … is there a certain one that Boston’s really like the taste…. it won’t do any good to buy one they don’t like. My baby does have a sensitive stomach and although she loves chicken , I think she may have some allergy symptoms to it. Thankyou Patricia Thompson

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