Great Danes make wonderful companions and are far gentler and more affectionate than many other dog breeds. Truthfully, they’re really just big babies! However, these big babies require unique care, which starts with high-quality dog food with the correct nutrition that’ll fuel their large bodies without leaving them overweight and at risk of joint problems.
Unfortunately, their joints aren’t the only thing you have to worry about with this breed—they’re also prone to having sensitive stomachs. It’s much more tricky to change your Great Dane’s food because their stomachs don’t do well with diet changes.
We’ve carefully created a list of the best dog foods for Great Danes with sensitive stomachs to prevent them from experiencing vomiting, diarrhea, and gas, and instead, provide them with the fuel they need that is gentle on their stomachs.
A Quick Comparison of Our Favorites of 2023
|Best Overall||Ollie Fresh Dog Food Lamb with Cranberries Recipe||
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|Best Value||Diamond Care Sensitive Stomach Formula||
|Premium Choice||Royal Canin Veterinary Diet Gastrointestinal High Fiber||
|Best for Puppies||Diamond Naturals Large Breed Puppy Formula Dry Dog Food||
|Vet's Choice||Nom Nom Fresh Dog Food Chicken Cuisine Recipe||
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The 10 Best Dog Foods for Great Danes With Sensitive Stomachs
1. Ollie Fresh Dog Food Lamb with Cranberries Recipe – Best Overall
|Main ingredients:||Lamb, Butternut Squash, Lamb Liver, Kale|
If you’ve got a picky eater, give Ollie Fresh Lamb with Cranberries Recipe a try. They only use high-quality ingredients and leave out all the “extras” that may upset your dog’s stomach. Some of the primary ingredients in this recipe are real lamb, butternut squash, lamb liver, kale, and rice. These ingredients are packed with antioxidants, minerals, vitamins, and fiber.
Each human-grade recipe was formulated with the help of an animal nutritionist and is nutritionally balanced and complete, meeting all the AAFCO standards. To get your hands on Ollie recipes, you’ll need to send in information about your dog, which they’ll ask you. Your answers will help Ollie produce recipes suited to your Great Dane’s needs—and then they’ll ship it to your door.
Because these recipes are crafted to your dog’s needs, are fresh, and use high-quality ingredients, they are pricier than many other dog foods on the market. However, they’re gentle on tummies and loaded with everything your dog needs, which is why they’re our number one pick for the best overall dog food for Great Danes with sensitive stomachs.
2. Diamond Care Sensitive Stomach Formula Grain-Free Dog Food – Best Value
|Main ingredients:||Potatoes, Egg Product, Potato Protein, Tomato Pomace|
For the best dog food for Great Danes with sensitive stomachs for the money, we’ve got the Diamond Care Sensitive Stomach Formula Adult Grain-Free Dry Dog Food. For Great Danes that struggle to digest meat proteins, this recipe uses eggs instead. It has limited ingredients that are gentle on their digestive system and contains probiotics to maintain good bacteria in their gut.
This option is grain-free, which is excellent for dogs with sensitivities to grain. However, grain is beneficial to dogs as it aids in digestion and is highly nutritious.
This dog food is nutritionally complete and balanced and contains vitamins, minerals, and omega fatty acids for a healthy body, skin, and coat. Their recipes meet the AAFCO standards, and each 25-pound bag contains around 100 cups of kibble. However, some customers have reported that the formula often isn’t consistent, with some bags of kibble smelling and looking different from others.
3. Royal Canin Veterinary Diet Gastrointestinal High Fiber – Premium Choice
|Main ingredients:||Chicken By-Product Meal, Brewers Rice, Chicken Fat, Powdered Cellulose|
For a more expensive but premium choice, we suggest Royal Canin Veterinary Diet Adult Gastrointestinal High Fiber Dry Dog Food. This recipe is loved by thousands of customers with dogs that suffer from sensitive stomachs thanks to its inclusion of soluble and insoluble fibers, pushing the crude fiber content to 8.5%, which is much higher than many other dog foods on the market.
Customers have reported improved stool quality in their Great Danes since starting this food due to the digestible proteins and the inclusion of prebiotics in this recipe. It contains EPA and DHA, which reduce inflammation in their bowels and contribute to a healthier, shinier coat. For an extra bonus, this recipe smells and tastes great to dogs for the purpose of encouraging them to eat even when their tummies aren’t feeling their best.
4. Diamond Naturals Large Breed Puppy Formula – Best for Puppies
|Main ingredients:||Lamb, Lamb Meal, Whole Grain Brown Rice, Cracked Pearled Barley|
For sweet Great Dane pups that are struggling with a sensitive stomach, check out Diamond Naturals Large Breed Puppy Formula Dry Dog Food. This recipe was specifically formulated for large breed puppies and caters to your Great Dane’s unique needs. However, the kibble size could be bigger to better suit their jaw size.
The first ingredient is lamb, which is a great alternative for pups with sensitivities toward chicken. It contains probiotics and uses both soluble and insoluble fibers from pumpkin and coconuts to aid in good digestion. There are plenty of fruits and vegetables in this recipe to provide your puppy’s body with beneficial vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants to fight against infection and boost their immune systems.
5. Nom Nom Fresh Dog Food Chicken Cuisine Recipe – Vet’s Choice
|Main ingredients:||Chicken, Sweet Potatoes, Squash, Spinach|
For our Vet’s Choice option, we’ve picked the Nom Nom Chicken Cuisine Recipe for its lean meat, which fuels the bodies of large dogs while keeping them lean to protect their joints. Each recipe is created to meet your dog’s needs with the help of a Veterinary Nutritionist, which is why they’ll ask for information about your dog when you sign up. With Nom Nom, you’ll receive their delicious recipes as well as personalized reports on your dog’s GI health which are created by their scientists.
Nom Nom creates high-quality dog food recipes with fresh ingredients that contain no fillers and chemicals and accommodate dogs with sensitivities. This recipe includes chicken, sweet potatoes, squash, and spinach which provide your dog with vitamins and minerals. However, it doesn’t contain added probiotics, and the fiber content could be higher to better accommodate dogs with sensitive stomachs.
6. Hill’s Science Diet Adult Sensitive Stomach & Skin Large Breed
|Main ingredients:||Chicken, Chicken Meal, Yellow Peas, Cracked Pearled Barley|
Hill’s Science Diet Adult Sensitive Stomach & Skin Large Breed Chicken & Barley Recipe Dry Dog Food contains real chicken and chicken meal, which are high in protein. Protein is typically easier to digest than fat, which is why this recipe has a moderate fat content of 13%. This kibble is larger in size to accommodate your Great Dane’s large mouth.
The included beet pulp is high in fiber, and so are the peas. However, there is concern about large quantities of legumes in dog food, so we’d prefer to see that ingredient listed further down. Dog owners have reported their dogs having less gas and running stomachs since starting on this food.
7. Purina Pro Plan Sensitive Skin & Stomach Large Breed Dry Dog Food
|Main ingredients:||Salmon, Barley, Rice, Oat Meal|
The Purina Pro Plan Sensitive Skin & Stomach Salmon Adult Large Breed Formula Dry Dog Food is nutritionally balanced and complete and has been formulated with sensitive stomachs in mind. Ingredients that are gentle on the stomach have been used, such as oatmeal and rice.
Glucosamine can be found in fish meal and salmon, which supports your large breed’s joints. Prebiotics are included, which promote a healthy gut, and the omega-6 fatty acids contribute to a healthy and shiny coat.
Free of chicken and other meat proteins that sensitive stomachs tend to react badly to, this recipe’s first ingredient is salmon. It’s also free of wheat, soy, and artificial flavors. Although pricey, this recipe is an excellent option.
8. Blue Buffalo Basics Skin & Stomach Care Adult Dry Dog Food
|Main ingredients:||Deboned Turkey, Oatmeal, Brown Rice, Peas|
Blue Buffalo Basics Skin & Stomach Care Turkey & Potato Recipe Adult Dry Dog Food only contains one animal protein—turkey—which makes digestion easier for Great Danes that struggle to digest meat which results in diarrhea, vomiting, or gas. However, this recipe does contain a high number of peas which has come under investigation due to being associated with heart disease in dogs.
Although ingredients are limited for the sake of your dog’s sensitive stomach, this recipe does include grains that are nutritious and provides your dog with antioxidants that support their immune systems. This recipe contains other nutritious ingredients, such as pumpkin, blueberries, and cranberries, which all make up the high fiber content in this recipe.
9. CANIDAE All Life Stages Formula Canned Dog Food
|Main ingredients:||Chicken, Chicken Broth, Chicken Liver, Dried Egg Product|
Dogs that have sensitive stomachs tend to experience a lot of diarrhea and vomiting and can become dehydrated. That’s why we’ve listed CANIDAE All Life Stages Chicken & Rice Formula Canned Dog Food. This canned food is high in moisture, with a crude content of 78%, and can contribute to adding back liquids into your dog’s body. Of course, the disadvantage is that you have to store the opened can in your refrigerator, and it doesn’t stay fresh for as long as kibble.
This dog food has been formulated by the people who know pets best—veterinarians. It contains lean meat, tasty broth, wholesome grains, and so much more. It’s also suitable for all breeds, making it ideal for homes that are shared with Great Danes as well as other smaller breeds.
10. Wellness CORE Digestive Health Wholesome Grains Dry Dog Food
|Main ingredients:||Whitefish, Menhaden Fish Meal, Herring Meal, Brown Rice|
Our final pick is Wellness CORE Digestive Health Wholesome Grains Whitefish & Brown Rice Recipe Dry Dog Food which is high in protein and flavor and contains whitefish, menhaden fish meal, and herring meal. To help dogs with sensitive stomachs and improve gut health, each kibble is coated with probiotics.
Highly digestible, high-quality ingredients are used in this formula, as well as superfoods such as pumpkin and papaya, which are high in fiber. Owners have noted consistency and regularity in their dog’s poops and appreciate the quality of the ingredients. There are several recipes in this range, giving your dog a variety of flavors to keep them excited. They’re made in the United States and primarily sourced locally. However, it is an expensive option.
Buyer’s Guide: Selecting the Best Dog Foods for Great Danes with Sensitive Stomachs
Great Danes are tricky breeds that should come with a handbook. Their sensitive stomachs are one of the most challenging aspects of this breed and keeping them comfortable and happy with the right food is every Great Dane owner’s greatest goal. Great Danes require simple diets without table scraps, too many treats, overeating, and munching out of the garbage can. Let’s discuss this further.
Discover the Cause
Your dog’s stomach may be sensitive for many reasons. If your Great Dane is vomiting or has diarrhea, you should take them to be checked over by your vet to ensure that the cause isn’t because of something serious, like stomach cancer.
Your dog may have a sensitive stomach because you’re feeding them too much food at once or if they’ve eaten something their body isn’t used to. Highly fatty food can cause plenty of issues for dogs, so try to refrain from handing them table scraps. Overweight Great Danes often suffer from joint issues, so limiting their treats and table scraps will be beneficial in many ways.
Always read the feeding instructions on the packaging of your dog’s food because portion sizes do differ from one type of dog food to another. The solution to your dog’s sensitive stomach may be as simple as feeding them less food at mealtime.
If your Great Dane has just started a new dog food, remember to transition them onto it slowly. If you don’t, the consequences will be an upset stomach.
Stress is another factor that could be the reason for their vomiting and diarrhea. Great Danes are sensitive dogs that don’t do well with change. The new pet or baby you’ve recently welcomed into your home could be the reason for their stress. It may take some time, but with plenty of love and affection, they’ll adjust to the changes.
Of course, even great dog foods that use high-quality ingredients may trigger an upset stomach in your Great Dane because their bodies aren’t able to tolerate one or more of the ingredients it contains.
Whatever the cause of the sensitive stomach in your Great Dane, always get them examined by a vet instead of coming up with your own assumptions. You’ll also need to provide them with plenty of water and give them hydrating, low-fat snacks to replenish their bodies.
While your other pet may be able to eat everything they see without any consequences, your Great Dane may be on the opposite side of the spectrum and seem to react to just about everything. Dogs differ from dog to dog, just as humans do. However, there may be a few ingredients causing their sensitive stomachs.
Great Danes with sensitive stomachs struggle to digest food and, therefore, require few ingredients that are easy to digest. However, they still need the proper amount of nutrients in their food, so look for dog food with “a complete and balanced diet” written on it.
Protein is one of the most common causes of sensitive stomachs in dogs. Many dogs struggle to process certain types, such as poultry. However, they might be able to process other meats better. Sometimes changing their dog food from a chicken recipe to a lamb or fish recipe will end their discomfort.
Dog food with high levels of fat doesn’t always work well with dogs with sensitive stomachs because they struggle to digest it. Dogs with sensitive stomachs should avoid recipes with fats or oils listed in the first four ingredients. Your Great Dane will probably do best on dog food with a fat content of around 15%, which is a moderate-fat level.
Fiber helps aid in digestion, so look out for ingredients such as beet pulp, tomato pomace, psyllium seed husk, whole grains, flaxseed, etc.
High-quality dog food is typically more digestible than low-quality dog food because they use higher-quality ingredients. They also often contain vitamins and minerals, as well as probiotics to restore and maintain a healthy gut, which is what your dog requires after a bad period of vomiting and diarrhea.
Dealing with a Great Dane who struggles with a sensitive stomach isn’t easy. Try out Ollie Fresh Lamb with Cranberries Recipe for dog food personally formulated to your dog’s needs, or for a cheaper option, consider Diamond Care Sensitive Stomach Formula. Royal Canin Veterinary Diet Gastrointestinal High Fiber Dry Dog Food has a higher fiber content than most, while Diamond Naturals Large Breed Puppy Formula meets your puppy’s developmental needs.
Don’t forget our Vet’s Choice option, Nom Nom Chicken Cuisine Recipe, where you can get healthy recipes and GI health insights for your dog!
Featured Image Credit: Nikolas Otto, Shutterstock