Best Dog Food for Pitbulls 

By Britt Kascjak

Are you searching for a new food for your pitbull or pittie mix? With so many options on the market, it can be difficult to know where to start!

The best food for your Pitbull is going to depend on several key factors.

This includes your dog’s age, activity levels, and any health conditions or concerns. Even then, there are a variety of different foods to choose from.

Here are 12 great food choices for Pitbulls and how to know if they are right for your dog!

Common Needs of Pitbulls

Contrary to popular belief, the term “Pitbull” doesn’t refer to a single breed. Instead, this term includes a group of breeds that share similar appearances.

Pitbull breeds include:

  • American Pit Bull Terrier
  • American Staffordshire Terrier
  • American Bully
  • Staffordshire Bull Terrier
  • Any mix of the above

Many other breeds and mixed breeds are, due to their appearance, referred to as Pitbulls. While this may not be accurate, it is worth consideration when adopting a dog.

Pitbulls are traditionally high energy and high prey drive dogs. This means that they need a food to support their energy needs.

One consideration when selecting a food is the likelihood of food allergies. Pitbulls are highly susceptible to allergies.

Many pitbull owners will choose a limited ingredient diet to lower the chance of issues.

Foods with Omega-3 fatty acids address skin issues from food and environmental allergies. This is a great way to help manage and provide relief from an existing problem.

Finally, pitbulls are at a higher risk of hip dysplasia, a deformity in the hip bones.

The ball and socket of the hip do not fit together as they should causing them to rub against one another. This can lead to pain and deterioration of the joint.

Foods that are high in glucosamine and chondroitin will help to relieve this pain. They will also support joint health over time.

Best Overall Dog Food for Pitbulls

We recommend Front of the Pack Chicken Air-Dried Organic Dog Food

Product Details

  • Formulated & approved by veterinarians
  • 100% all-natural ingredients and the highest-quality USDA meat
  • Air-dried to maintain nutritional benefits

Who Should Buy This Food

Dog owners that are looking to enjoy the benefits of a raw or fresh food diet will enjoy this food.

The air-drying process locks in the nutrition and benefits of these foods. But, it also offers the convenience of a kibble diet.

Our Rating

5 stars out of 5

Best High-Quality Dog Food for Pitbulls

We recommend A Pup Above Gently Cooked Sous-Vide Dog Food

Product Details

  • High protein content
  • 100% human grade food & non-GMO vegetables
  • Single source protein
  • No artificial flavors
  • Good for picky eaters

Who Should Buy This Food

Gently cooked sous-video food, this high-quality option is made in a USDA human food facility.

By skipping the high heat processing, it delivers more flavor and nutritional value. It offers joint, immune, and digestive support.

Our Rating

5 stars out of 5

Best Plant-Based Dog Food for Pit bulls

We recommend Wild Earth Complete Protein Dog Food

Product Details

  • Clean, whole-food ingredients
  • Sustainably and responsibly sourced
  • Added prebiotics and fibers for optimal digestion
  • Includes roasted sweet potatoes and pumpkin
  • No artificial flavors

Who Should Buy This Food

Whether you want to make more sustainable choices or your dog has a meat allergy, this is a great option.

The kibble provides the necessary protein, healthy fats and oils, and amino acids. In doing so, it promotes healthy skin, coat, heart, and general health.

Our Rating

5 stars out of 5

Best Dog Food for Healthy Digestion

We recommend Taste of the Wild High Prairie Grain-Free Dry Dog Food

Product Details

  • Contains species-specific K9 Strain Proprietary Probiotics
  • Made in the USA by a family-owned brand
  • High-quality ingredients from trusted and sustainable local and global sources
  • Grain free recipe

Who Should Buy This Food

This well balanced diet is made without grains, corn, wheat, or artificial additives. Instead it includes bison meal, sweet potatoes, chicken meal, chicken fat, and roasted venison.

The added antioxidants and prebiotics help to support healthy digestion. This Taste of the Wild dry dog food It’s a great choice for dogs with digestive-related concerns and health issues.

Our Rating

4 stars out of 5

Best Dog Food for Pitbulls with Food Allergies

We recommend Merrick Grain-Free Chicken-Free Real Salmon & Sweet Potato Recipe as a great dog food for pit bulls with allergies.

Product Details

  • Made with 60% protein and healthy fat ingredients
  • High levels of omega fatty acids
  • Contains glucosamine and chondroitin to maintain healthy joints
  • Includes salmon and sweet potatoes

Who Should Buy This Food

Free from chicken meal and grains, this food eliminates the biggest food allergy offenders.

The high-quality food is made with real whole foods. It is packed with nutrition to support a healthy coat, skin, and joints. This makes it one of the best foods for pitbulls with allergies.

Our Rating

4 stars out of 5

Best Affordable Dog Food for Pitbull

For the best affordable dog food for Pitbulls we recommend Wellness Complete Health Adult Deboned Chicken & Oatmeal Recipe Dry Dog Food.

Product Details

  • Includes omega fatty acids, antioxidants, glucosamine, probiotics, and taurine
  • No additives or artificial preservatives
  • Healthy balance of carbs, fat, and protein

Who Should Buy This Food

If you are looking for high-quality food on a budget, this is a great option.

Wellness is made in the USA using highly nutritious, globally sourced ingredients. It works to support the immune system, boost energy levels, and optimize health. It’s one the cheaper dog food formulas, but still packs a nutritional punch.

Our Rating

4 stars out of 5

Best Dog Food for Pitbull Puppies

If you’re looking for a great dog food for pitbull puppies, we recommend Purina Pro Plan Sport Development 30/20 Chicken & Rice High Protein Puppy Food

Product Details

  • Includes glucosamine for joint and cartilage growth
  • High-quality protein to build lean muscles
  • 30% protein and 20% fat for active puppies

Who Should Buy This Food

Puppies have unique nutritional needs, and this food provides for their requirements.

It’s packed with bone-supporting ingredients, essential vitamins, and brain-nourishing nutrients. The formula will support healthy growth and the active puppy lifestyle.

Our Rating

5 stars out of 5

Best Dog Food for Joint Health

We recommend Purina Pro Plan Veterinary Diets JM Joint Mobility Dry Dog Food

Product Details

  • Created in collaboration with veterinarians, nutritionists, and researchers
  • High protein-to-calorie ratio to promote lean muscle mass
  • Contains omega-3 fatty acids and glucosamine for joint health

Who Should Buy This Food

For dogs that suffer from arthritis and joint pain, or those at high risk of it, this is a great food.

It is formulated by professionals to support joint and cartilage health. It also promotes lean muscle mass to optimize health and mobility.

Our Rating

5 stars out of 5

Best High Protein Dog Food for Pit bulls

We recommend Blue Buffalo Wilderness Healthy Weight Chicken Recipe Grain-Free Dry Dog Food

Product Details

  • Includes LifeSource Bits for immune system health
  • Formulated with glucosamine, chondroitin, and EPA for joint health
  • High-protein, grain-free formula

Who Should Buy This Food

If you are searching for a nutritious, high-protein diet for your dog, this food is a good choice.

It supports joints and mobility, boosts your dog’s immune system, and promotes lean muscle mass.

Our Rating

4 stars out of 5

Best Wet Dog Food for Pitbulls

We recommend Ziwi Peak Mackerel & Lamb Recipe Canned Dog Food

Product Details

  • 91% fish, meat, organs, and bone
  • All free-range meats and wild-caught fish
  • Source of chondroitin and glucosamine

Who Should Buy This Food

Dogs that are in need of a moisture-rich food will enjoy this high-quality dog food recipe. The small batch canning processs allows them to deliver high-quality, high meat recipes. With 3% New Zealand Green-Lipped Mussels, it’s a source of chondoitin and glucosamine. This makes it our top wet dog food for pitbulls.

Our Rating

5 stars out of 5

Best Dry Dog Food for Pitbulls

We recommend Annamaet Ultra 32% Dry Dog Food

Product Details

  • Premium formula designed for highly active and performance dogs
  • Prebiotics and probiotics to support gut health
  • Marine microalgae is a sustainable, natural source of Omega-3 fatty acids

Who Should Buy This Food

Made in the USA, this food is formulated to meet the needs of active dogs, and it’s one of the best dry dog foods for pitbulls.

The ingredients are specifically chosen to support every aspect of your dog’s health. This includes gut health, immune system, cognitive function, and creating lean muscle mass.

Our Rating

5 stars out of 5

Best Dog Food for Older Pitbulls

We recommend ORIJEN Senior Grain-Free Dry Dog Food

Product Details

  • 85% premium animal ingredients
  • Source of WholePrey nutrition with nutrient-rich organs
  • Freeze-dried coated to maintain raw flavor

Who Should Buy This Food

As your Pit Bull enters his golden years, his food needs to support his changing body. This senior grain-free diet will do just that.

The food is made from nutrient-dense ingredients including organs and bone. This makes it a source of essential protein, vitamins, and minerals, which is exactly the kind of nutrients you look for when choosing the best food for a senior pit bull.

Our Rating

4 stars out of 5

Buying Guide

Selecting the right dog food for your pup can be challenging. Especially with so many options available on the market today!

Before introducing something new, we recommend consulting with your veterinarian.

The above foods are all high-quality options. But, only you and your veterinarian know your dog’s unique nutritional needs.

Here is some information to help guide your search for the best dog food for your pitbull.

What is the Best Food to Feed a Pitbull?

The best food for a pitbull is one that provides all necessary nutrients. This includes a balance of proteins, fats, and carbohydrates.

The exact amount of each that is needed will depend on your dog’s health and lifestyle.

But, the general guideline for a pitbull is:

  • 45% protein
  • 30% carbohydrates
  • 25% fats

This breakdown is based on the needs of an average, healthy adult pitbull. Your veterinarian will be able to provide you with a more individual recommendation.

What Dog Food Do Vets Recommend for Pitbulls?

When selecting a dog food, veterinarians look at the nutritional value. They recommend food that will support healthy growth and development at each stage.

The nutritional needs of a puppy differ from that of an adult pitbull.

One way that they assess the value of a food is using a set of specific criteria. It includes viewing food labels, assessing ingredients, and analyzing nutrients. 

These guidelines were created by the World Small Animal Veterinary Association (WSAVA).

While some companies are transparent and forthcoming, others fail to answer when asked. By not answering questions, companies make it impossible to determine their quality.

Companies that are recommended based on this data include:

  • Hill’s
  • Royal Canin
  • Purina Pro Plan
  • Eukanuba

Each of these companies test the nutrional balance of their foods.

They hire experts including qualified nutritionists to oversee all steps of the process. This includes the development of the foods as well as ongoing maintenance.

What Foods Should Pitbulls Avoid?

Foods that contain human-grade ingredients are often preferred. This is due to the reliable quality of these foods.

But, not all human foods are safe for your dog.

In fact, there are many foods that are toxic and very dangerous for your pitbull.

Some foods that you should avoid include:

  • Avocado
  • Cherries
  • Chocolate
  • Coffee or other sources of caffeine
  • Grapes and raisins
  • Mushrooms
  • Onions

You should also avoid sharing fatty table scraps with your dog. Too much fat can cause health complications like pancreatitis.

What Are Most Pitbulls Allergic to?

Pitbulls are known for having a high rate of allergies, including food-related allergies.

Surprisingly, the ingredients more likely to be responsible for allergies are animal-based ingredients. Not the plant-based ingredients.

Common offenders include:

  • Beef
  • Dairy
  • Chicken
  • Lamb
  • Egg
  • Pork
  • Fish
  • Rabbit

The other common allergen found in dog foods is grains. In particular, wheats.

If you suspect that your pitbull may be experiencing an allergic reaction, you can make a change to his diet.

Try a limited ingredient dog food to narrow down protein sources. A grain-free single protein food will reduce the risk of problems. This is done by limiting the potential allergens he is exposed to.

Don’t forget to also limit the treats that you are feeding your dog.

For example, if you are feeding a limited ingredient salmon food, stick to salmon-based treats.

If you want to identify the source of your dog’s allergies, slowly add one ingredient at a time.

Give time with each addition for your dog to adjust and watch for signs of reactions. If the first addition works smoothly, add another.

At the first sign of allergy, take note of your most recent addition.

What’s the Best Dog Food for Pitbulls to Gain Muscle?

If your dog is struggling to put on muscle, don’t discount possible health reasons. Contact your veterinarian to discuss your concerns.

After you have ruled out medical reasons, you can consider your dog’s diet. 

The best dog foods to help your pitbull gain muscle are high in protein and fat. They are also free from unnecessary fillers.

The protein is necessary for muscle recovery as well as the growth of muscles after exercise. The fat provides energy.

It is also important to choose a meat-based animal protein source. While plant-based foods are healthy for dogs, they won’t support the kind of weight gain needed to bulk up.

Make sure to pair your pitbull’s dietary changes with exercise to support your goal.

Try adding some strength training exercises like cart pulling to your routine. You should also consider exercises focused on stamina like walking, running, or swimming.

Bulking up should be gradual. It’s also recommended to do it under veterinary supervision.

Is Purina Good for Pitbulls?

The question of whether Purina is good for pitbulls or not isn’t black and white.

Purina, as a company, has many different products. Some are designed to be budget-friendly while others are more focused on quality.

If you are looking for a high-quality food made by Purina, consider Purina Pro Plan.

The foods contain high-quality ingredients to support digestive and immune health. There are also special formulas for specific health concerns.

This includes:

  • Sensitive skin & stomach
  • Bright mind (for senior dogs)
  • Weight management
  • Sport active 27/17
  • Sport performance 30/20
  • Calm & balanced

There are also options for dogs based on their size and age, such as puppy formulas and food for large breed dogs.

Purina Pro Plan is a high-quality and WSAVA-compliant food. It is highly recommended by veterinarians and animal nutritionists.

Is Bully Max Good for Pitbulls?

Bully Max was formulated specifically for active dog breeds like pitbulls. It offers high protein and fat levels to support their energy needs.

The food has been made with 100% natural and human-grade ingredients.

It contains a wide variety of vitamins and minerals to support optimal health. It’s also calorie-dense, meaning less food needs to be given with each meal.

Unlike many foods that are created for a specific life stage, Bully Max is suitable for a wide variety. This includes puppies over weeks old as well as nursing and pregnant dogs.

The high nutritional value combined with it’s versatility make it a great choice for pitbull owners.

Should I Feed My Pitbull Grain-Free?

There has been a lot of conversations recently about grain-free diets.

Some dogs are genuinely allergic to or sensitive to grains. They can wreck havoc on the digestive system of dogs wtih sensitivities.

With food allergies being highly prevalent in pitbulls, this is a genuine concern.

But, there has been a lot of discussion about a warning issues by the FDA. They revealed a possible connection between grain-free foods and canine dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM).

Since the initial warning was released, more information has been brought forward.

This includes the fact that the there are many more factors to consider.

While there is still the possibility of a link, that is only one part of a more complex issue. Studies are still ongoing to better understand the recent increase of DCM cases.

When deciding whether to feed grain-free, you should weigh the pros and cons for your dog.

An option preferred by many dog owners is a single, whole-grain food. This means avoiding the grains that are more likely to cause allergies.

Your veterinarian will be able to help you identify the best choice for your dog’s unique needs.

What to Feed Pitbulls to Make Them Muscular?

Food that supports the growth and maintenance of muscle contain key nutrients.

This includes:

  • Vitamin B Complex
  • Vitamin E
  • Calcium
  • Choline

Most of these vitamins and minerals can be found in protein. This is why proteins are often connected with the idea of building muscle.

Vitamin B complex supports a healthy metabolism. It’s also necessary for converting carbs to glucose for energy.

Vitamin E protects the body against oxidative damage. It is needed in the body to metabolize fats.

Calcium is usually associated with bone health, it also contributes to muscle growth. It supports the healthy function of the muscles in the body, which is necessary for them to grow and thrive.

Finally, choline helps on a cellular level. It’s necessary for the nerve communication that allows muscles to contract and function.

Choline is also credited as promoting muscle recovery.

These essential nutrients are found in proteins like fish and organ meats. They are also found in flaxseed and certain vegetables.

Experts often recommend dog foods with salmon or other fish proteins for this reason.

Is Blue Dog Food Good for Pitbulls?

Blue Buffalo is a natural dog food that is readily available at most pet stores. It has proven to be a popular choice, but is it good for pitbulls?

Made with high-quality proteins and natural ingredients, it offers good nutritional value.

With a wide variety of different formulas to choose from, it’s easy to find an option for your dog’s dietary needs. This includes grain-free, limited ingredient, and even prescription diets.

If your pitbull has a food allergy, their limited ingredient dog foods make it easy to accomodate it.

It is a solid and reliable choice when selecting food for your pitbull.

How Much Should My Pitbull Eat?

The younger the dog, the more he will need to eat. This will support growth and development in these early years.

It is for this reason that puppy foods are high in calories.

Read the recommended serving size on your dog’s food. This will provide a suggested amount based on your dog’s weight.

But, keep in mind that this is a guideline.

A pitbull that lives a highly active life will need more food to make up for the calories he is burning. Or, if your dog lives a more sedentary life, he may need fewer calories.

You can adjust this amount at home by monitoring your dog’s weight.

A healthy pitbull has well-defined muscles and a tuck where the body tapers before the hind legs.

If you notice that your dog is losing weight and muscle mass, you may need to increase his meals. But, if you notice your dog gaining weight, you may need to cut back.

Your vet will be able to provide you with better guidance on what would be considered an ideal weight.

The truth is, no two dogs are the same.

What Dog Food is Best for Pitbull Puppies?

Pit bull puppies will need more protein than adult dogs. This will support the growth of muscle mass and healthy bones.

This will also provide energy for their highly active and playful personalities.

Failing to provide quality nutrition as a pitbull puppy will lead to health problems later in life. So, it’s important to start with a high-quality puppy food.

Check the ingredients list for a meat-based protein. Preferably a wholesome meat protein like lamb or chicken. They may be listed as lamb meal or chicken meal.

Your pitbull puppy will also need a source of healthy natural fats, such as fish oil or flaxseed oil.

Most puppy formula foods will contain the vitamins and minerals necessary. But, you can always consult with your veterinarian to make sure their needs are met.

What Human Food Can Pitbulls Eat?

There are many human foods that can be included in a cainine diet. You can offer these foods as a tasty treat or use them as a supplement to your dog’s regular food.

Adding fresh foods to your dog’s diet can be highly beneficial.

The most common choices as food toppers include meats (cooked without seasoning) as well as fresh fruits and vegetables.

Some great human foods to offer your dog include:

  • Carrots
  • Pumpkin
  • Cucumbers
  • Broccoli
  • Beets
  • Spinach
  • Green Beans
  • Apples
  • Blueberries
  • Bananas
  • Strawberries
  • Watermelon
  • Peanut butter
  • Chicken or turkey breast
  • Salmon
  • Sardines
  • Sweet potatoes
  • White Rice
  • Whole grain Brown rice

Each of these foods offer their own health benefits.

This could include vitamins and minerals to boost  your dog’s well-being. Or, they may help to address a concern like calming an upset stomach.

If you are looking to supplement your dog’s regular food, start by calling your vet.

Discuss what you want to achieve and which foods you are considering. They will be able to warn you about any potential concerns.

If you are looking for a specific health benefit, your vet may have other suggestions.

Alway start by introducing new foods in small quantities. Watch for any signs of stomach upset or allergic reaction.

If you notice your dog is feeling ill, stop feeding the new food immediately and call your vet.

Is Rachael Ray Dog Food Good for Pitbulls?

Rachael Ray’s Nutrish line of dog food products are considered to be a premium dog food.

It is made using high-quality, real proteins like beef, chicken meal, salmon meal, and turkey meal. The food has also been supplemented with vitamins and minerals.

There are both grain-free recipes and recipes with grains. You can also buy dog foods that are limited ingredient, whole ingredient, and protein-rich.

With so many options, there are dog foods that will suit your pitbull at different life stages.

Is Dry or Wet Food Better for Pitbulls?

Both wet food and dry food have benefits to consider. There is no “one size fits all” answer about which is best.

Wet food is a great option for dogs that need added hydration in their diet. It’s also easier to chew and swallow for dogs with dental problems.

Moist canned dog foods are higher in protein but they are also higher in fat content. This means that they may not be a good choice for dogs with some health conditions.

Dry food is a popular choice due to how convenient it is for the dog owner.

It’s easily stored, travels well, and requires less cleanup after mealtimes. The crunchy kibbles have also been credited with contributing to clean, healthy teeth.

To choose the best option for your dog, you will need to determine which will best fit his needs.

Conclusion: Best Dog Food for Pitbulls

There are many great options of dog foods for pitbulls of all ages, sizes, and healthcare needs.

The best Dog foods are ones like the Wild Earth Complete Protein Dog Food and Purina Pro Plan Veterinary Diets JM Joint Mobility Dry Dog Food. They are packed with high-quality ingredients and essential nutrients.

But, the best food option on our list is the Front of the Pack Chicken Air-Dried Organic Dog Food.

Formulated by veterinarians, it includes only the highest quality, all-natural ingredients.

This food will meet all your pitbull’s nutritional needs for a happy, healthy life.

Photo of author
Britt Kascjak
Britt Kascjak has been active in the animal rescue community for over 15 years, volunteering, fostering, and advocating for organizations across Canada and the US. Her ‘pack’ includes her husband John, their 3 dogs – Daviana, Indiana, and Lucifer – and their 2 cats – Pippen and Jinx.