Home Recommended The Best Dog Food for Dry Skin – A (2020) Buying Guide and Reviews

The Best Dog Food for Dry Skin – A (2020) Buying Guide and Reviews

The Best Dog Food for Dry Skin – A (2020) Buying Guide and Reviews

When your dog is constantly scratching and licking itself, it’s not doing so just to annoy you — it’s just struggling with dry skin. If this type of behavior bothers you, imagine what it’s Puppy dog wolfdoing to your poor pup. Even though it sounds like a minor issue, it can make your dog’s life a living hell. Moreover, dried skin patches can be a sign of a major health problem.

Your dog’s coat acts as a barrier that protects it against infection and elements. When that barrier breaks down, your dog will become susceptible to a number of health problems and infections. It can be hard to figure out what’s causing your pup all the pain and anguish. Sometimes it’s an allergy, dusty environment, or mites and fleas attacking your dog. However, more often than not, the problem stems from what you’re feeding it. Hence, it’s extremely important to find the best dog food for dry skin so you won’t cause any harm to your fur-baby.

Dogs are typically always joyful and bouncy, but health issues cause them to retreat into themselves and start acting completely different. I hate to see my dog not act like her normal self, and I want to help her in any way possible. If you want to take a page out of my book, to put both you and your pet out of misery, keep reading to find out what the best dog food for dry skin is.


Our Top 5 Best Dog Food for Dry Skin – Summary and Highlights For 2020

What Causes Dry Skin on Dogs?

Dog wolf animal

Dry skin patches can be caused by a serious illness, like hypothyroidism and Cushing’s disease. Sometimes the problems stem from spending long periods of time in a certain environment. However, it’s quite common for them to arise because of something you’re doing wrong without even realizing it. Here are the things you should always be on the lookout for, so your dog could stay happy, and itch-free.


I’m not a fan of the spring because I suffer from hay fever: my eyes get itchy and my nose gets runny. Dogs can experience these same sensations and can be allergic to everything from food, feathers, dust or flea saliva — and suffer in silence. These allergies can also result in atopic dermatitis, which causes, itching, dry skin, inflammation, and redness, and can even lead to skin infections. Many low-quality formulas include known allergens, which is why it’s important to find the best dog food for sensitive stomach and gas or any good dog foods available.

The most common allergy American dogs suffer from is caused by flea saliva. If you want to prevent your dog from getting skin dermatitis, try to avoid fleas at all costs, and talk to your vet about possible treatment options for allergies.


Another culprit of your dog’s scratchy skin could be parasites. If you notice your pet has dry or flaky skin, it could indicate that he has lice or even a parasite that causes mange. Having lice is never a good thing, and to discern between these two, and find proper treatment, you will need a trip to the vet. Moreover, they could even refer you to a specialist if they suspect there’s a reason for concern.


Both fungal and bacterial infections can cause your dog a lot of pain and trouble, and some of them (like the ringworm) can even be transferred to humans. Your vet will probably take a sample of the affected area to find out if your dog is battling an infection.

These infections could also mean your pet is struggling with a larger problem you’re unaware of. Nevertheless, the testing process is simple and quick and will save both of you from a lot of heartaches.

Systemic Disorders

Hypothyroidism and Cushing’s disease are the main 2 diseases associated with dry patches of skin. Symptoms also include hair loss, brittle hair, skin infections, etc. Cancer and auto-immune diseases are also often to blame for a dog’s dry skin.

Dry skin shouldn’t be taken lightly, and it’s always better to be safe than sorry. Always keep regular appointments with your vet, and go see them if you notice your dog struggling with dry skin.

Breed-Specific Conditions

Certain breeds are more prone to developing skin conditions, especially when it comes to dry skin. For example, the Chinese Crested and other hairless breeds can suffer from a variety of issues during their lifetime, because they have no fur to protect them. Excessive dog shedding can also cause issues. Siberian Huskies and Alaskan Malamutes can suffer from dermatosis because they grow and lose fur quickly. However, always take your dog to your vet, so they can rule out any more serious conditions.

Other Causes

Some dogs aren’t built for harsh weather; low temperatures and dry air can cause them to develop dry skin. Sometimes poor nutrition, harsh soaps, or excessive bathing could be to blame. I can not stress this point enough, always take your dog to the vet, so they can pinpoint the cause of dry skin, and treat it.


Some dogs could experience only one symptom of dry skin, but others could present with several. Always keep an eye out for the telltale signs of dry skin, such as itchiness, scabs, dandruff, pimples, flaking, hair loss, scaling, odor, and inflammation.

Tips on How to Prevent Dry Skin

Cute french bulldog sitting at table with empty plate and cutlery

Of course, it’s normal for your dog to itch and scratch every now and then. Also, it can be difficult to determine how much is too much, and dry skin patches can be hidden. Since it’s better to be safe than sorry, here are some things you can do to help keep your pup safe.

Maintain a Healthy Diet

Although some dogs do tend to eat nearly everything they see, it’s important to regulate the food you are serving them. If you establish a balanced diet and regulate its eating habits from puppyhood, you can stop dry skin patches from appearing.

You can also ask your vet if you should add any supplements to your dog’s diet. Sometimes the solution is as simple as finding the best dog food for dry skin to help your dog have a healthy coat.

Give Your Dog Regular Baths

A typical time frame is to give your dog a bath every six weeks. However, the timeline can be adjusted based on how often it gets dirty, and how long its coat is. Also, keep in mind that bathing your pup too often will cause its fur and skin to lose the oils that keep it healthy.

Keep up to Date with Vet Checkups and Preventatives for Parasites

Humans know when they have to go to the doctor because they feel something is amiss However, as your dog can’t communicate exactly when and what’s bothering it — prevention is key. Always keep appointments with your vet, and tell them if you think there’s something going on.

My Top 5 Picks

1. Taste of The Wild Grain Free Premium Dry Dog Food Pacific Stream Adult

Taste of the Wild Grain Free High Protein Real Meat Recipe Pacific Stream Premium Dry Dog Food

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I consider the Taste of The Wild to be one of the best dog food for dry skin because of its natural ingredients and quality make. It contains amino acids, probiotics, and antioxidants to help keep your pup in top shape. Moreover, it’s rich in nutrients and contains no artificial flavors and colors which sets it apart from other brands. Because of all of this, I consider TOTW to have one of the best dry dog foods on the market.

About The Product

TOTW is made from premium meats such as buffalo, boar, turkey, smoked salmon, lamb, duck, venison, and quail. The product features a grain-free formula and complex carbs to give your dog lasting energy. It promises to increase your dog’s immune system by providing its digestive tract with all the right nutrients. Taste of the Wild offers many different flavors, which vets often recommend in order to help with your dog’s allergies.

Features and Benefits

Immune System Support

70% of your dog’s immune system stems from its diet. Hence, you should pick food that has a positive effect on its digestive tract. TOTW includes probiotics and prebiotics which contain bacteria that is already naturally located in your pup’s GI tract. It also contains proprietary strain probiotics to ensure a healthy stomach and a healthy dog.

Maximum Nutrient Absorption

More often than not, minerals that are found in the food just pass through your dog’s digestive tract, without leaving a mark. However, TOTW recipes contain chelated minerals that will attach themselves to proteins so your pet can absorb them. The more nutrients your pet absorbs, the better the quality of their skin and fur — which prevents dry patches and shedding.

Balanced Omegas

The product contains both Omega 3 and Omega 6 fatty acids which are an extremely popular nutritional supplement for all dogs. Moreover, they can help with allergies, skin conditions, heart disease, arthritis, cognitive functions and more.

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2. Merrick Grain-Free Dry Dog Food

Merrick Grain Free Dry Dog Food Recipes

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Merrick’s offers one of the best dog food for dry skin, as their recipes contain only deboned meat. Although the chicken bone by-products aren’t dangerous by themselves, they are a telltale sign of low-quality food. I want to make sure I’m feeding my dog only high-quality food in order to keep her healthy, and I appreciate this feature greatly.

About The Product

The grain-free recipe contains 70% of meat proteins and 30% of fresh produce. Also, what personally won me over, it doesn’t contain any ingredients from China and is produced in the USA. Hence, Merrick’s ingredients and recipes are of superior quality as they have to abide by more strict regulations.

Features and Benefits

Made for Healthy Skin and Coat

Chondroitin and Glucosamine can help rebuild your dog’s cartilage and improve its mobility. Neither dogs nor humans can naturally produce Omega 3 and Omega 6 acids, but they add many helpful qualities to our diets. If you include them in your pet’s diet, they will help with eliminating dry skin and growing fur.

Real Whole Foods

Merrick’s recipes feature apples, sweet potatoes, blueberries, and peas, and exclude fillers, gluten, soy, wheat, and preservatives. Whole foods are the best way to ensure your dog’s health and longevity as they contain fiber, minerals, fat, and protein.

Deboned Meat

Low-quality products typically contain both meat and bones of an animal or fish. Although there are no known health risks of buying these types of products— you need to provide only the best dog food for dry skin for your fur-baby. Moreover, recipes with deboned meat are much healthier for your dog’s coat and skin. Due to the quality of ingredients it uses, Merrick has created several types of the best dry dog foods.

3. Blue Buffalo Wilderness High Protein Grain Free, Natural Adult Dry Dog Food

Blue Buffalo Wilderness High Protein Grain Free, Natural Adult Dry Dog Food, Chicken 24-lb

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Many inexpensive dog food manufacturers add artificial flavors, and seldom include any real meat in their recipes. However, this recipe contains real salmon in order to help maintain and build your dog’s muscle mass. The recipes aim to mimic a dog’s ancestral diet and feature the meat of animals that wolves hunt in the wild. Blue Buffalo Wilderness is the best dog food for dry skin if your pet is a huge meat lover.

About The Product

The product features grain-free food, such as peas and sweet potatoes that help your dog maintain an active lifestyle. Moreover, Omega 3 & 6 acids are added to support skin and coat health. The formula also contains the company’s LifeSource Bits, a blend of minerals, vitamins, and antioxidants to maintain a strong immune system.

Features and Benefits

Made for Healing Your Dog’s Skin

Blue’s dry recipes consist of natural ingredients and an added blend of minerals and vitamins. The formula never contains corn, soy, wheat, preservatives, artificial flavors or poultry by-product meals. All of these features make for a kibble that is great for healing your pup’s dry and damaged skin and coat.

Unique Recipes

The company vows to nurture your dog’s wild side. Their unique recipes feature venison, rabbit, quail, bison, halibut meat, and many more.

High-Quality Food

This dry food doesn’t contain any artificial flavors, scents or ingredients. The quality of ingredients and production is what separates it from inexpensive brands.

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4. Purina Pro Plan Focus Sensitive Skin & Stomach Adult Dry Dog Food

Purina Pro Plan Sensitive Stomach Dry Dog Food; FOCUS Sensitive Skin & Stomach Salmon & Rice Formula - 30 lb. Bag

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Purina Pro is aimed at creating the best dog food for dry skin in adult dogs. The product contains antioxidants to heal and maintain your pup’s immune system. The company promises to exclude wheat, soy, corn, artificial flavors or colors, and poultry and fish by-products to ensure a high-quality formula. Purina guarantees 2.52% more fat, compared to its biggest competitor Royal Canin.

About The Product

The product is made for healthy skin and coat and contains Real salmon, chicken, and lamb as the primary ingredient in every formula. Unlike its competitors, the product promises to focus on sensitive skin and stomach only, rather than having it as an added side-effect. It’s also loved by most dog-owners and recommended by a great number of vets all over the US.

Features and Benefits

Special Formulas for Dogs of All Shapes and Sizes

The huge variety of products can cater to your dog’s specific needs, based on its age, breed, size, and lifestyle. Their puppy formula promises to build up the immune system from a young age, and decrease the likelihood of your pup having dry skin. Moreover, their adult formula contains Omega 6, linoleic acid, and Vitamin A for healthy skin and coat.

Made for Sensitive Skin

Purina’s special recipe is also great for dogs who have sensitive skin or stomachs. Each formula is tailored to create the optimal fat-to-protein ratio that helps your pet stay in the best physical condition.

Supported By Experts

You can see Purina products in every veterinary office and pet stores alike. The company has a lot of support from nutritionists, scientists, and vets, and has been creating dog food for over 85 years. Purina is good for all adult dogs because the food is not as chewy as with other brands.

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5. AvoDerm Natural Dry & Wet Dog Food, for Skin & Coat, Chicken & Rice Formula

AvoDerm Natural Dry & Wet Dog Food, For Skin & Coat, Chicken & Rice Formula

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AvoDerm is focused solely on creating the best dog food for dry skin, coat, and overall well-being. This is only one of the few formulas that feature avocado, which is full of vitamins A, B6, C, and E, which nourish your dog’s coat. It also contains a chicken meal and brown rice formula to help prevent dry skin. The biggest package comes in a 30 lb bag, however, you can also sign up for auto-delivery to make sure you always have your pup’s food home on time. But, keep in mind that you will have to pay for shipping every time you get a package.

About The Product

This natural dog food brand features premium protein without wheat, corn, soy, artificial flavors, colors, or preservatives. The California avocados help with your dog’s immune system. The food caters to older dogs of all breeds and sizes. Moreover, AvoDerm food has a savory taste, that is adored by many adult dogs.

Features and Benefits

Simple Ingredients

The dry food features simple ingredients and is pressure-cooked so your pet can receive the best nutrition from quality produce. Also, the formulas are a great choice for picky pets, as they don’t have an overpowering scent.

Premium Protein

AvoDerm promises to use only high-quality vitamins and proteins to give your dog healthy skin and coat, with no dry patches.


The company makes all of its dog food in California, and all ingredients are both in Canada and the USA, except for the duck from France, and lamb from New Zealand. AvoDerm uses premium products to ensure your dog’s health and longevity.

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Final Thoughts on the Best Dog Food for Dry Skin

Dry skin can cause both you and your dog a great deal of pain and can lead to serious health problems and infections. With so many available options it’s hard to pick the best dog food for dry skin available. Different products bring different qualities and ingredients to the table, so which one should you choose?

Based on its production process, ingredients and overall quality — AvoDerm is the best dog food for dry skin. My reason for choosing them is that this one of the few companies whose formula solely focuses on healing and maintaining your pup’s coat. The company makes no false claims and uses only high-quality ingredients to prevent skin infections.

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Hi, everyone! My name is Mathew Barham and I’m the editor in charge here at M-Dog. I’m currently based in Northampton, Pennsylvania, where I live with my beautiful wife, two amazing kids, and four rowdy rescue dogs. Growing up, my parents had a huge backyard and lots of animals. So my entire life, I was surrounded by pets that I cared for deeply. When my wife and I moved into a bigger place, I knew that I wanted to do the same for my family. That’s when we went to an animal shelter and fell in love with the most adorable little rescue pup. Since then, our family just kept growing, and we couldn’t be happier about it.