You love giving your dog tasty treats every now and then, whether for a job well-done, as part of a puzzle toy, or just to spoil them. But not all dog treats are created equal. What might be excellent for a small breed dog might not be suitable for large breed dogs (and vice versa). For example, dogs of differing sizes need to consume different calorie amounts each day, and treats should only make up around 10% of your pet’s caloric intake. So, a larger dog might be okay with high-calorie treats, while a smaller dog would not. Then there’s the texture of the treat to consider, as large dogs might prefer treats that are tougher to get through, so they’re longer-lasting.
However, there are a plethora of dog treats you can pick from, so how can you possibly choose the best one for your large dog? We’re here to help by sharing what you should look for in dog treats for large dogs and reviews of the ten best dog treats on the market. Read on if you’re ready to find your large pup’s new favorite treat!
A Quick Comparison of Our Favorites (2024)
|True Chews Premium Jerky Cuts
|American Journey Peanut Butter Recipe
|Redbarn Large Peanut Butter Filled Bones
|Best for Puppies
|Wellness Soft Puppy Bites Lamb & Salmon Recipe
|Greenies Large Dental Dog Treats
The 10 Best Dog Treats for Large Dogs
1. True Chews Premium Jerky Cuts Dog Treats – Best Overall
|58 per piece
Our recommendation for the best overall dog treat for large dogs is True Chews Premium Jerky Cuts. These treats are larger than most, so they’ll easily satisfy your favorite four-legged friend. And because they’re made with chicken that was raised free of antibiotics and hormones, you can feel good about allowing your pet to have them. Plus, these jerky chews have a savory taste your canine companion will love!
They aren’t the lowest in calories and fat, so if your dog is watching its weight, another treat might be better. But they are high in protein! And though these come in a resealable bag to ensure freshness, there were a handful of complaints by pet parents stating the treats became moldy long before the “best by” date.
2. American Journey Crunchy Biscuit Dog Treats – Best Value
|13 per piece
Looking for the best dog treat for large dogs for the money? Then this is it. These tasty treats are on the smaller side but have a great crunch that big dogs should love. Plus, they’re full of delicious peanut butter flavor baked into each grain-free bite. According to pet owners, these dog biscuits were a hit with the majority of dogs, big and small!
However, chickpeas and peas are the main ingredients here, which have been tentatively linked to heart disease in dogs. You’ll be better off with something else if that’s a concern.
3. Redbarn Large Peanut Butter Filled Bones Dog Treats – Premium Choice
|Beef bone, corn syrup, chicken meal
|278 per bone
This one should fit the bill if you want a treat that’s a bit more premium for your favorite pup. As it’s not just a treat but a bone, it will have your large dog contentedly chewing for a while! Made from a beef femur bone and stuffed with yummy peanut butter flavor, this long-lasting treat will keep your pet happy for ages. That means less boredom for your canine companion, with the added benefit of improved dental hygiene as this bone supports dental health. It’s a bonus for you both! And if your dog doesn’t like peanut butter, you can also choose from beef, chicken, lamb, and cheese’n’bacon flavors.
A couple of pet parents claimed their dogs got upset stomachs after chewing on this, and a couple of people mentioned instances of the bones chipping, so keep an eye on your dog while they enjoy this.
4. Wellness Soft Puppy Bites Dog Treats – Best for Puppies
|6 per piece
Designed for puppies one year and younger, these treats have only all-natural ingredients and can be used for training or just to spoil your pet. With protein from real meat and added fruits and veggies, these yummy treats provide the nutrients your dog requires to grow strong and healthy. Plus, these treats are a good source of omega-fatty acids, which will help your dog’s coat stay smooth and shiny.
These treats have a bit more fat content than others, and chickpeas are also listed amongst the ingredients, so if either of those is of concern, go with a different treat. And if your puppy is a picky eater, they might not be a fan of this one.
5. Greenies Large Dental Dog Treats
|Wheat flour, glycerin, wheat gluten
|147 per piece
Everyone loves Greenies; there’s a reason this dog treat is such a hit! And these large Greenies are perfect for bigger dogs. Containing minerals, vitamins, and nutrients your dog needs to stay healthy, these treats are designed to improve dental health by cleaning tartar and plaque. In fact, Greenies are accepted by the Veterinary Oral Health Council. This is a tasty treat you can feel no guilt over about giving to your favorite canine.
There aren’t too many complaints about these treats either. A couple of dog parents said their pups became gassy after eating, and at least one person stated their pet got diarrhea after eating. That was pretty much it!
6. Full Moon Chicken Jerky Dog Treats
|Chicken, organic cane sugar
|49 per piece
If you’ve been searching for a treat that’s a bit healthier for your large dog, give Full Moon Chicken Jerky a try. This treat has only four ingredients—with real chicken breast being the main one—so you know exactly what you’re feeding your pet. Plus, this jerky is human-grade, meaning technically, you could eat it too. And though it’s grain-free, you won’t find any chickpeas or peas here. Bonus? This jerky was a hit with even picky eaters!
However, they do have the potential to become dried out and hard rather quickly. These treats also smell a bit strong, which could be a turn-off for some people and dogs.
7. Blue Buffalo Blue Bits Soft-Moist Training Dog Treats
|4 per piece
With these training treats, you know you’re getting the Blue Buffalo quality you’ve come to know and love. These treats are on the smaller side as they’re meant to be training treats, but they still offer plenty of real chicken taste. And with added vitamins and minerals, you can rest assured that your dog is getting necessary nutrients. These treats also provide a boost of omega fatty acids for healthy skin and coats, along with healthy fibers to aid in better digestion. If your pup isn’t a fan of chicken, you can also choose from turkey, beef, and salmon flavors.
Though these treats are supposed to be soft and moist, there were several complaints about them being dry and crumbly instead. Some pet parents also stated they were too hard for their dogs to consume.
8. Stewart Freeze-Dried Raw Dog Treats
|6 per piece
These freeze-dried raw dog treats are bigger than most, so they’re a wonderful size for large dogs. Made with 100% beef liver, these treats provide 50% minimum protein for your pup but are incredibly low in calories and fat. And since they only have a single ingredient, they make a fabulous option for dogs with allergies and food sensitivities. Plus, there are several other flavors to pick from, including cheddar cheese, lamb liver, and wild salmon, so you’re sure to find a taste your dog adores. According to dog owners, these treats are exceptionally handy during training!
The downsides of these treats are that they smell incredibly unappealing to humans and are difficult to tear into smaller pieces.
9. Premium Pork Chomps Roasted Twists Dog Treats
|Pig skin, dextrose
|35 per piece
These tasty pork skin treats make an excellent alternative to rawhide treats and provide 75% minimum protein for your puppy pal. They’re designed for easy digestion, so you don’t have to worry about upset stomachs. These treats are also created to be stain-free, so you can avoid having them stain your carpet. Best of all, several pet parents stated that these treats lasted longer than treats such as pigs’ ears and chewy bones.
Some dog owners said, though, that these treats had a chemical odor to them at times, so the scent may not appeal to all. Picky eaters also didn’t seem to be fans of these pork twists.
10. Wet Noses Grain-Free Dog Treats
|Organic pea flour, organic canola oil
|18 per piece
These flavor-packed treats use human-grade ingredients, so you know you’re giving your pup something good. Featuring real pumpkin, peanut butter, and quinoa, these cookies are grain-free and non-GMO, so they’re a great choice if your large dog has food sensitivities or allergies. (And though these treats have pea flour, there are no actual peas or chickpeas to be found.) In fact, many dog parents with dogs that had allergies or sensitivities raved about how well their pets did with these treats.
However, some batches of these cookies were incredibly hard and even a little burnt, so how yours will end up might be hit or miss. Other than that, though, these cookies were a massive hit with dogs!
Buyer’s Guide: Choosing the Best Dog Treats for Large Dogs
Large dogs have different needs than small dogs in several areas, including in what they need from their dog treats. So, there are particular things you should look for in dog treats when it comes to your large dog.
While larger dogs don’t necessarily require larger treats, treats that are too small could be a choking hazard. Though, if you go with treats that are a bit bigger, your pet could get more out of them (such as the treat taking longer to eat, so it’s more satisfying). And if you’re going with dental chews, such as Greenies, you likely will prefer a larger size—if these treats are too small, your dog will gobble them down and not get any of the teeth cleaning benefits.
What ingredients go into a dog treat is one of the most important aspects to look at when purchasing them for your pup. Especially with larger dogs, as they are more prone to dilated cardiomyopathy than smaller dogs, you may want to avoid treats containing peas and legumes as they’ve been linked to the disease. You also want to look for treats containing real ingredients, not filler or by-product ingredients. That means finding treats with real meats, fruits, and veggies. Another thing to avoid in the ingredient list is artificial sweeteners.
If your pup has allergies or food sensitivities, you’ll want to check the ingredient list carefully. Some of dogs’ most common food allergies are to common proteins, so you’ll want to find alternative protein sources or go with treats that focus more on other ingredients besides protein. Your dog will also likely do better with a limited ingredient dog treat.
We want our dogs to be as healthy as possible, so that means feeding them healthier products. Dog treats should only be about 10% of your dog’s diet, so ensure that any treats you purchase aren’t incredibly high in calories or fat. (Especially if your pet is overweight!) When looking at treats, look for the AAFCO’s nutritional adequacy label on the bag; this way, you know the treats have been formulated to meet your dog’s dietary requirements.
Dog treats that have rougher, chewier textures (such as jerky or rawhide) will grab your pet’s attention for a longer time, as they will take longer to be eaten. However, if you’re using treats for training purposes, stick with easy-to-chew treats; otherwise, you’ll have to pause training to allow your pet to finish its treat. Also, pay attention to the kinds of textures your dog prefers and stick to what it enjoys best!
Dog Parent Reviews
There is really no better way to find out more about a dog treat than by reading reviews from other dog parents. These will typically be more honest than a brand’s advertising, and you can search out reviews that are specifically from dog owners with larger dogs to see how well a treat did.
When you want to get your large dog the best overall dog treat, we recommend True Chews Premium Jerky Cuts with Real Chicken Dog Treats as they are larger in size than other dog treats, made with real chicken, and high in protein. If you’re looking for the best dog treat for large dogs for the money, our pick is American Journey Peanut Butter Recipe Grain-Free Oven Baked Crunchy Biscuit Dog Treats for their low cost and delicious peanut butter flavor that dogs love. Finally, if you want a treat that’s a bit more premium, try out Redbarn Large Peanut Butter Filled Bones Dog Treats, as they offer your dog both a yummy treat and a chew that will keep them happy and occupied.
Featured Image Credit: Olena Yakobchuk, Shutterstock