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

Easily identified by his massive body and wrinkled skin, the Bulldog is a fun and goofy breed.

The Bulldog was originally developed to help butchers by grabbing a bull by its nose and holding it in place. Over the years, they were bred for dog fighting and other blood sports. Once those sports were outlawed they came to take on the role for which they are most known today – a loving companion pet.

Bulldogs are a medium-sized breed that have no standard for height but weigh between 40 and 50 pounds at maturity. They are a happy-go-lucky breed that is unfortunately plagued by numerous health problems. A high-quality diet is a must for this breed, especially if you want to maximize his lifespan.

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

Understanding a Bulldog’s Diet Requirements

Protein is the most important nutrient for any dog, but particularly for a massive breed like the Bulldog. As a puppy, protein provides the building blocks for healthy muscles and, as an adult, it helps your dog maintain lean muscle mass. Fat is a concentrated source of energy for dogs, but it should be controlled in a Bulldog’s diet to prevent overgrowth as a puppy and obesity as an adult. Both protein and fats are best from animal sources because that’s what your dog’s body is evolved to digest.

Carbohydrates provide your dog with energy, fiber, and essential nutrients. They need to come from digestible sources like whole grains, vegetables, beans, and legumes. Some Bulldogs are prone to allergies, however, so you might consider a grain-free diet. In terms of fiber, look for prebiotic fibers and an overall fiber content around 5% or so.

  • Puppy Bulldog Diet – As a puppy, your Bulldog needs a minimum of 22% protein and 8% fat to fuel his growth and development. A puppy formula will make sure these needs are met, just make sure it isn’t too high in fat or your Bulldog could gain an unhealthy amount of weight.
  • Adult Bulldog Diet – Around 12 months or at 75% of your dog’s adult size, switch to an adult recipe that provides a minimum of 18% protein and 5% fat. Keep the protein somewhere between 24% and 30% with low- to moderate fat content around 12% to 16%.
  • Senior Bulldog Diet – As a senior, the risk for your Bulldog becoming obese increases so switch to a low-fat formula or a senior recipe. You can also try a healthy weight formula.

In addition to protein, fat, and carbohydrates your Bulldog can benefit from certain supplements. Prebiotics support healthy gut flora while probiotics encourage regular digestion. Chelated minerals are bound to protein molecules for increased absorption and glucosamine and chondroitin provide support for your Bulldog’s bones and joints.

Special Dietary Considerations for Bulldogs

The Bulldog is a medium-sized dog that has an average lifespan between 8 and 10 years. This is fairly short for a dog of its size and its short lifespan may be attributed to some of the conditions to which the breed may be prone.

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

  • Allergies
  • Brachycephalic Syndrome
  • Cherry Eye
  • Demodectic Mange
  • Entropion
  • Gastric Torsion
  • Hip Dysplasia
  • Patellar Luxation
  • Reverse Sneezing
  • Skin Fold Dermatitis

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

Many of the health problems to which the Bulldog is prone can be divided into categories such as eye problems and musculoskeletal issues. Some of the eye problems to which the breed is prone include cherry eye, dry eye, and entropion. Cherry eye occurs when the gland under the eyelid protrudes in the corner of the eye. Dry eye happens when tear production is inadequate, and entropion is when the eyelashes turn inward and irritate the eye.

Musculoskeletal problems are common in Bulldogs due to their compressed structure and significant mass. Hip dysplasia is an abnormality of the hip joint which causes the femoral head to slip in and out of joint. Patellar luxation is when the kneecap slips in and out of place. Both of these conditions can lead to arthritis later in life. Supplementing your dog’s diet with glucosamine and chondroitin may help manage these conditions and reduce the risk for arthritis.

In addition to these health problems, the Bulldog is prone to food allergies and obesity. Dogs can develop allergies to any food but some of the most common culprits are grains like wheat and corn as well as common proteins like chicken, beef, and pork. Feeding your dog a grain-free or limited ingredient diet may help limit the risk for food allergies.

It is also very important to maintain a healthy body weight for your Bulldog and to be mindful of the risk for bloat. As a deep-chested breed, the Bulldog has a high risk for gastric torsion or bloat – a condition in which the stomach twists and cuts off blood flow to the heart. This can happen if your dog eats or drinks too much, exercises to close to a meal, or swallows too much air while eating. Maintaining a healthy body weight will help reduce the risk for bloat while also staving off issues like obesity and musculoskeletal problems.

Bulldog Feeding Chart

When it comes to feeding your Bulldog, the focus is on providing high-quality nutrition and maintaining a healthy body weight. As a puppy, your dog may need three meals a day to support his growth and development but, as he approaches his adult size, you should scale it back a little to make sure he doesn’t put on too much fat. You’ll be feeding your dog between ½ and 2 cups of food per day, divided into two meals for adults and seniors.

The best way to know how much to feed your Bulldog is to choose a high-quality dog food made with plenty of protein and moderate fat content. From there, check the feeding recommendations according to your dog’s age and weight then divide that amount by your desired number of meals. Remember, your dog’s needs will change as he grows and ages, so check back every few months to see if you need to adjust your dog’s daily portion.

The Best Dog Food for Bulldogs: Our Top 15 Picks for 2019

Now that you have a better understanding of your Bulldog’s nutritional needs, you’re ready to start shopping for dog food! Remember, the best Bulldog food will be made from high-quality natural ingredients including premium animal proteins, moderate fat content, and digestible carbohydrates with beneficial supplements for digestion and joint support. Here are our top 15 picks:

Wellness CORE RawRev Grain-Free Original Recipe with Freeze-Dried Turkey

Overall Best Food for Bulldogs: If you want to feed your Bulldog the best kibble money can buy, this Wellness CORE RawRev Grain-Free Original Recipe with Freeze-Dried Lamb is a great option. This recipe features high-protein kibble infused with freeze-dried raw pieces of turkey for a boost of nutrition and flavor. It contains premium natural ingredients like deboned turkey and chicken meal with grain-free carbohydrates like potatoes and peas. This recipe contains nutrient-rich chicken fat as well as fresh fruits and vegetables to provide natural sources of key nutrients. It is protein-rich, with 36% crude protein and moderate fat content. It also contains chelated minerals, omega fatty acids, and probiotics.

  • Pros: Premium natural ingredients, high-protein kibble and freeze-dried raw pieces, grain-free carbohydrates, fresh fruits and vegetables, rich in omega fatty acids, chelated minerals
  • Cons: Expensive to feed as a staple diet, may be a little high in fat for some dogs

American Journey Grain-Free Chicken & Sweet Potato Dry Food

Most Affordable Food: You don’t necessarily have to empty your wallet to feed your Bulldog a decent product. This American Journey Grain-Free Chicken & Sweet Potato Dry Food features real chicken as the main ingredient with grain-free carbohydrates like sweet potatoes. It is completely free from wheat, corn, and soy so there is a low risk for triggering your Bulldog’s allergies, and it is fortified which fresh fruits and vegetables to provide natural sources for key vitamins and minerals. This recipe is rich in protein for lean muscle mass with plenty of omega fatty acids for healthy skin and coat. It also contains chelated minerals and dried fermentation products for probiotic support.

  • Pros: Several sources of animal protein, rich in essential fatty acids, digestible grain-free carbohydrates, fresh fruits and vegetables, chelated minerals, probiotics
  • Cons: Contains some plant protein (pea protein), fairly high in calories

Taste of the Wild High Prairie Grain-Free Adult Dry Food

Most Popular Food: If you’re rather not spend the time looking for the perfect Bulldog dog food, why not choose a popular option like this Taste of the Wild High Prairie Grain-Free Adult Dry Food. This recipe features real buffalo as the first ingredient with several supplemental sources of protein like lamb, chicken, and bison. It contains a whole 32% protein with digestible grain-free carbohydrates and plenty of essential fatty acids. It is fortified with fresh fruits and vegetable for an antioxidant-rich boost of nutrition with chelated minerals for balance and dried fermentation products for healthy digestion. All in all, it is a great choice for your adult Bulldog.

  • Pros: Several premium animal proteins, digestible grain-free carbohydrates, fresh fruits and vegetables, rich in omega fatty acids, chelated minerals, prebiotics and probiotics
  • Cons: Main source of fat is plant-based (canola oil), contains some plant proteins (potato and pea protein), may be too high in fat for some dogs

NomNomNow Fresh Food Delivery

Super Premium Food: If you have the budget to feed your dog fresh food, NomNomNow is a great way to go. This company provides freshly prepared, all-natural dog food delivered right to your door in automatic monthly payments. NomNomNow uses only the finest ingredients and their products are always delivered fresh, never frozen until you put it in the freezer yourself. Simply create a profile for your dog online, select your recipe, then start receiving shipments. You can customize the recipe according to your dog’s unique nutritional needs as well, which is great for Bulldogs with allergies.

  • Pros: Made with the freshest ingredients, custom meals for your dog, delivered fresh to your door, perfectly portioned pouches, automatic shipments
  • Cons: Limited number of recipe options, very expensive to feed, delivery restrictions in some areas

Earthborn Holistic Venture Rabbit Meal & Pumpkin LID Grain-Free Recipe

Best Food for Bulldogs with Allergies: If your Bulldog already has allergies, you need a recipe made with all-natural ingredients like this Earthborn Holistic Venture Rabbit Meal & Pumpkin LID Grain-Free Recipe. Not only is this recipe all-natural and holistic, but it is made with a limited number of main ingredients to reduce the risk for food allergies and sensitivities. This formula features rabbit meal as a single source of animal protein which further reduces the risk for allergies, complemented by a novel source of carbohydrate – fresh pumpkin. This recipe contains a blend of omega fatty acids for healthy skin and coat as well as dried fermentation products for digestion and chelated minerals for optimal nutrient absorption.

  • Pros: All-natural and holistic, limited number of ingredients, single source of novel protein, grain-free carbohydrates, rich in omega fatty acids, chelated minerals, probiotics
  • Cons: May be too high in fiber for some dogs, contains some plant protein (pea protein)

Blue Buffalo Wilderness Grain-Free Salmon Adult Recipe

Best Food for Bulldogs with Sensitive Stomachs: For Bulldogs with sensitive stomachs, a grain-free recipe made with digestible ingredients is a must. This Blue Buffalo Wilderness Grain-Free Salmon Adult Recipe offers an excellent option because it contains high-quality proteins like fresh salmon and chicken meal as well as grain-free carbohydrates and healthy animal fats. This formula offers a natural source of glucosamine for joint support as well as a blend of omega fatty acids for healthy skin and coat. It is supplemented with fresh fruits and vegetables as natural sources for key nutrients with synthetic vitamin and chelated minerals for balance. It contains 34% protein and 15% fat to help your dog maintain his lean muscle mass.

  • Pros: Premium animal proteins, digestible grain-free carbohydrates, protein-rich with moderate fat, plenty of omega fatty acids, fresh fruits and vegetables, prebiotics and probiotics, chelated minerals
  • Cons: Contains some plant protein (pea protein), may be too high in fiber for some dogs

3 Top Rated (5 Star) Bulldog Adult Foods

Merrick Limited Ingredient Diet Grain-Free Lamb & Chickpeas Recipe

If your Bulldog suffers from food allergies, a limited ingredient grain-free recipe this like Merrick Limited Ingredient Diet Grain-Free Lamb & Chickpeas Recipe might hit the spot. This recipe features real deboned lamb as the first ingredient with grain-free, digestible carbohydrates like chickpeas and lentils. It contains plenty of omega fatty acids with chelated minerals to ensure optimal nutrient absorption.

Wild Frontier by Nutro Grain-Free Lamb & Venison Meal Adult Recipe Dry Food

This Wild Frontier by Nutro Grain-Free Lamb & Venison Meal Adult Recipe Dry Food is a great option for your Bulldog because it contains premium animal proteins to support lean muscle mass without going overboard on fat. It features fresh lamb and chicken meal with digestible grain-free carbohydrates like split peas and potatoes. It is rich in essential fatty acids with chelated minerals for balance.

Zignature Multiple Protein Zssential Formula Grain-Free Dry Food

If protein is your focus, this Zignature Multiple Protein Zssential Formula Grain-Free Dry Food is just what the doctor ordered. Made with several premium animal proteins like turkey, lamb, duck, and salmon, this recipe provides a whopping 32% protein with 16% fat. It is loaded with beneficial supplements to ensure nutritional balance as well as fresh fruits and plenty omega fatty acids.

3 Top Rated (5 Star) Bulldog Puppy Foods

Nulo Grain-Free Salmon & Peas Puppy Recipe

If you’re looking for a nutrient-rich recipe for your Bulldog puppy, you’ll love this Nulo Grain-Free Salmon & Peas Puppy Recipe. This recipe features 80% real animal protein ingredients with grain-free carbohydrates. It is free from chicken and eggs which is great for dogs with food allergies and contains low-glycemic carbohydrates as well. It also contains added calcium and phosphorus to help your puppy’s bones grow strong.

Merrick Grain-Free Real Chicken & Sweet Potato Puppy Recipe

For a high-protein, moderate-fat puppy food, try this Merrick Grain-Free Real Chicken & Sweet Potato Puppy Recipe. This recipe features fresh chicken and chicken meal as lean sources of animal protein with grain-free carbohydrates like sweet potatoes and peas. There are fresh fruits and vegetables to provide natural sources for key nutrients as well as beneficial supplements like chelated minerals and probiotics.

Solid Gold Love at First Bark Chicken, Potato, & Apple Puppy Recipe

If you’re looking for the perfect recipe to get your Bulldog started on the right foot, look no further than this Solid Gold Love at First Bark Chicken, Potato, & Apple Puppy Recipe. This holistic recipe features premium natural ingredients like high-protein chicken, digestible grain-free carbohydrates, and nutrient-rich chicken fat. It contains 28% protein and 16% fat with 5% protein and is supplemented with chelated minerals and probiotics for digestion.

2 Picks for Senior Bulldog Foods

Castor & Pollux Organix Grain-Free Senior Recipe

As your Bulldog gets older, his needs for calories go down but his needs for quality nutrition don’t change. This Castor & Pollux Organix Grain-Free Senior Recipe is a great option because it features high-quality, organic ingredients in a grain-free recipe made with plenty of protein to maintain lean muscle mass with limited fat to prevent obesity. It also contains probiotics for healthy and regular digestion.

FirstMate Pacific Ocean Fish Meal Weight Control Senior Formula

If you’re concerned about your Bulldog’s weight, this FirstMate Pacific Ocean Fish Meal Weight Control Senior Formula might be a good option. It is a limited ingredient diet made with a novel source of protein, so it won’t trigger food allergies or sensitivities. It contains adequate protein for your dog’s needs with limited fat to control calories and it is supplemented with chelated minerals and glucosamine.

Our FAQ and Bulldog Feeding Guide

Once you’ve chosen the right dog food for your Bulldog, you need to think about finding the right dog bowl and how you’re going to store the food. Your Bulldog will eat anywhere from ¼ to 1 cup of food per meal, so you might need a large dog bowl. Look for durable materials like ceramic and stainless steel which are also easy to clean with a low risk for harboring dangerous bacteria. Because the Bulldog is also prone to bloat, you might consider a slow-feed bowl to prevent him from eating too fast.

When it comes to storing your dog’s food, you want to keep it as fresh as possible. As soon as you open the bag, it will start losing some of its nutritional value. Fortunately, the inside of the bag is treated to help preserve the food, but you should still place it in an airtight container for the maximum benefit. If you pour the food right into the container, you lose that benefit.

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

How much food should I feed my Bulldog? – The Bulldog generally eats between ½ and 2 cups of food per day, depending on his body weight and activity level. To determine how much to feed your dog, refer to the feeding recommendations on the package according to his age and weight. It is usually better to err on the low side of the scale with this breed due to their high risk for obesity. You should keep an eye on your dog’s weight and can make adjustments if he loses weight or seems lethargic.

How many times a day should I feed my Bulldog? – As a puppy, your Bulldog may need three small meals a day to sustain his growth and development. Once he reaches about 75% of his adult size, however, you should switch to two meals per day, so he doesn’t put on weight too quickly and add stress to his bones and joints. As an adult, your Bulldog will do well with two meals per day, one in the morning and another in the evening.

What kind of food do Bulldogs eat? – Because the Bulldog has a high risk for allergies, the quality of his diet is very important. Fresh food is the highest in nutritional value for dogs because it is close to a raw diet in terms of nutritional integrity, but safer and easier to feed. If you can’t afford fresh food, dehydrated or freeze-dried food may be more affordable. If not, try a high-quality kibble made from natural ingredients with fortified with beneficial supplements. You could also try wet food because it tends to be higher in protein, but the Bulldog has a risk for dental problems so the dental benefits of dry food may be more important.

What vegetables are good in a Bulldog food? – Vegetables provide dietary fiber as well as natural sources for vitamins and minerals. As such, they are a valuable addition to any high-quality dog food. Here are some of the best vegetables for Bulldogs:

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

Even if the dog food you choose contains fresh vegetables, you might still want to consider supplementing his diet with veggies as a healthy snack. Just make sure they are safe for dogs to eat and that you clean them thoroughly before feeding. You should also feed small amounts to avoid upsetting your dog’s stomach from an overload of fiber.

Do Bulldogs need grain-free dog food? – Though there is a great deal of controversy surrounding the safety of grain-free diets for dogs, there is no conclusive evidence as of yet. The fact remains that Bulldogs have a higher risk for food allergies than many breeds, so a grain-free diet may actually be the best choice. A limited ingredient diet may also be warranted if your dog has allergies or a sensitive stomach.

A Final Word

Now that you know the basics about your Bulldog’s nutritional needs, you’re ready to start shopping for the best Bulldog food. Remember to look for a product that is made from high-quality natural ingredients including premium animal proteins, moderate fat content, and digestible carbohydrates with beneficial supplements for digestion and joint support.

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

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