Best Dog Food for Great Danes in 2019

Top 5 Great Dane food

Latest Update: July 29, 2019

It is shocking to see how people do not keep an eye on the food that they feed to their dogs, especially big dogs like great danes. These dogs demand a lot of care when it comes to feeding. They have special needs that only the best dog food for great danes can fulfil. If you are not sure what kind of great dane dog food you should buy, here we have presented a few selected ones that your dog will fall in love with.


Great Danes are easily one of the largest breeds in the world. They can not only put fear on every passing dog that walks through your gate, but can also be one of the friendliest and most faithful companions to have alongside. They are natural hunters that also have a kind heart and extreme love for their owner.

Despite their enormous size, Great Danes are actually very laid back and relaxed. They are not an aggressive breed. But there are particular needs to take into account when buying Great Dane dog food. Because of their calm nature and also some specific health issues this breed has, I suggest paying proper attention when searching for the best food for Great Danes.

A Great Dane can weight over 100 pounds in adult size. In fact, they can reach to 200 pounds at maturity. Their height can get to 10 inches tall at the shoulder, so they can get pretty big.

This breed is actually packed with many health problems that can arise with time. One of these problems, for example, stems from their growth spurts that can cause them to not develop their bones properly in their first months of growth. They usually have a very short lifespan of 7 to 10 years, being one of the breeds with the shortest lifespan.

With that in mind, and knowing that Great Danes don’t eat as much food as you’d expect you should take into consideration that when feeding a puppy, you shouldn’t use regular puppy food as it is too rich for this breed. The best food for Great Danes always follow this rule. The Great Dane puppy food that needs to be used is one for the larger breeds.

No supplement, no additional anything: I advise you not to enrich their food by any means. Feeding information in high-quality food for this breed states that when feeding Great Dane puppies, you should put about three meals per day and then reduce to two meals per day during the rest of their lifespan. This is the most optimal way of feeding a Great Dane.

In general, the following Great Dane feeding chart will state the usual amount of food in a Great Dane diet based on actual products that can be given to different ages and gender, on a daily basis:

  • Puppies up to six months: about 4 cups to females and 6 cups to males;
  • Between six months and twelve: Increase cups by about two a day;
  • Mature: 8 cups for females and about 12 for males;
  • Adults: Decrease by one or two cups a day.

Quick Links to Our Picks

1. Merrick Grain Free Recipe Dry Dog Food
2. Wellness Complete Health Natural Dry Senior Dog Food
3. Natural Balance Wild Pursuit Formula Dry Dog Food
4. Ideal Balance Large Breed Natural Chicken and Brown Rice Recipe Dry Dog Food
5. Royal Canin Size Health Nutrition Giant Adult Dry Dog Food
6. Eukanuba Adult Dry Dog Food
7. Nutro Natural Choice Limited Ingredients Dry Dog Food
8. Eagle Pack Natural Dry Dog Food
9. Castor & Pollux Organix Dry Dog Food
10. Precise 726331 Holistic Complete Large/Giant Breed Adult Dog Food

*The above links lead to current prices and customer reviews.

1. Introduction

2. Quick Links to Our Picks

3. How to Choose the Best Food

4. Product Review

4.1 Merrick Grain Free Dry Dog Food

4.2 Wellness Complete Health Dog Food Dry

4.3 Natural Balance Dry Dog Food Wild Pursuit Formula

4.4 Ideal Balance Dog Food Large Breed

4.5 Royal Canin Giant Dog Food Size Health Nutrition

4.6 Eukanuba Dry Dog Food Adult

4.7 Nutro Natural Choice Dry Dog Food Limited Ingredients

4.8 Eagle Pack Dog Food Natural Dry

4.9 Castor & Pollux Organix Dog Food Dry

4.10 Precise Holistic Complete Dog Food Large/Giant Breed

5. What Should Be Included In My Great Dane Diet?

6. How Much Do Great Danes Eat?

7. Low or High Protein Diet For My Great Dane Puppy?

8. Can I Give Additional Treats Alongside the Dog Food?

9. Conclusion

How to Choose the Best Food for Great Danes

Great Danes suffer from many health problems including digestive issues, I think it is better to keep the carbohydrates low to medium, but don’t skip them. If you do, your dog will not have the energy to do anything. The lower your food has in carbs, the higher it should have in the fat content, but not going too high. About 15% is a good reach here.

The following recommended Great Dane food takes all that I’ve said into account and I’ll include a review of the pros and cons of each one.

Product Review of Food for Great Danes

Merrick Grain Free Dry Dog Food

A great product with tremendous reputation and reach, the Merrick dry dog food comes in the flavours Buffalo, Chicken, Duck and Texas Beef. They also have three different sizes to choose from – 4, 12 and 25 pounds.


  • Being grain-free means that it is better for breeds that have digestive issues;
  • It has 70% meat proteins and 30% fresh produce;
  • Has many options for flavour and size for your dogs;
  • Has sweet potatoes in its ingredients which are an excellent source of carbohydrates;
  • Reviews are extremely positive;
  • Great for your dog’s skin as well as special treatment for the fur’s development;


  • Dog food is more enriched than the optimal level for Great Danes, so it might be necessary to reduce the consumption. Remember to take a look at the daily consumption Great Danes should have as well as remember the fact that they eat less than other dogs of the same height and weight because they have a more relaxed behaviour;


  • Don’t exercise your dog after eating; this contains considerable amounts of carbs;
  • Smaller and frequent meals are better to avoid gastric torsion;

It is overall a great food for Great Danes and is highly recommended for being grain-free. I cannot stress how important it is not to include grains in a Great Dane diet! Some of the problems that may arise from digestive issues could even be lethal to the dog.

The different flavours ensure that your dog will enjoy the meal regardless of its tastes: There is something for everyone here.

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Wellness Complete Health Dog Food Dry

As per puppy food recommendations, this dog food focuses on a balanced diet with every ingredient being natural. There is no wheat, corn, soy, meat by-products, artificial flavours, colours or preservatives included in this food. It is specially made for senior dogs and has a huge upside of being optimal for your dog’s digestive health.


  • Optimised nutrition for the well-being of your dog’s digestive health;
  • Very balanced ant complete diet with nothing essential missing;
  • Contains fewer calories than other foods;
  • Good care of your dog’s teeth and eyes;
  • Focus on supporting your dog’s skin and fur;


  • Contains grains;

This brand has earned its reputation, and the senior food is especially fantastic for the Great Dane breed since it contains only the necessary and doesn’t progress common issues that can arise in Great Danes.

Remember also not to let your dog exercise after eating and to take your dog’s current weight into account when deciding the portions. Give two meals a day or even three, but never only one. For puppies, there are better options than this food, but this is one of the best if not the chosen one for ageing Great Danes.

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Natural Balance Dry Dog Food Wild Pursuit Formula

Also focusing on being a balanced meal, this high protein dog food is rather unknown compared to the other two previous foods, but it’s earning its reputation very fast. This comes in 4, 10 and 22 pounds and has three different formulas:

  • Beef & Lamb meal Formula;
  • Chicken, Turkey & Quail Formula;
  • Trout, Salmon Meal & Tuna Formula;
  • All three formulas are grain-free!


  • Balanced for all life stages;
  • Contains freeze dried raw pieces rich in protein that dogs like;
  • Does not contain any grains;


  • Added ingredients not accordingly listed like chicken in the trout and salmon meal formula;

A great option for meals that don’t need too much management from the owner, it is pre-balanced, built for all ages and has many flavours for dogs that have an allergy to a particular food. Remember to respect the mentioned cup amount per age and gender of the Great Dane, and you shouldn’t have any problem with your dog’s food anymore.

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Ideal Balance Dog Food Large Breed

The first on the list that has two different packages based on your dog’s age: They offer the Adult formula and the Mature Adult one, coming in 15 lb or 30 lb bags. This is ideal for large breeds as it does not contain too much enrichment and contains the essential for a balanced diet.

It is optimised for Great Danes because of this. It contains fresh chicken as well as natural ingredients in both formulas. It doesn’t contain corn, wheat, soy, artificial colours, flavours or preservatives.


  • Has the chicken #1 lean protein that keeps your dog slim;
  • Contains natural fibre;
  • Boosts natural defence and bladder health;
  • Great for larger breeds and doesn’t exceed the necessary;
  • Provides and supports a healthy and natural growth;


  • Not as recognised as some of the previously mentioned brands;


  • This food does contain grains; remember to keep an eye on your dog’s health and pay attention to his faeces if he is handling the ingredients well. Sometimes, dogs can have allergies and smaller brands can include exotic ingredients to boost your dog’s health but can cause allergies. If nothing goes wrong in the first few days of consumption, you can safely assume everything is fine.

This brand is great and very communicative in regards to stating all ingredients, vitamins, antioxidants and minerals, which is always a plus. It also comes with a good step-by-step guide in how to adapt your dog to transitioning into new foods.

They explain how to mix the old food with the newer one and in what proportion. This is a great sign of competency with the client and has earned them reviews of high quality.

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Royal Canin Giant Dog Food Size Health Nutrition

For giant breeds, this contains a complex of antioxidants, vitamins C, E and Taurine to support your dog’s ageing and health quality. The Royal Canin starts on the right food by providing exact information on what types of dog and what age and pound is optimal to start consuming their products: This is for dogs above at least 100 lb and over 18/24 months old.


  • Promote digestibility with a very high-quality diet and ingredients selection;
  • Their support for bone and joint health is excellent to prevent some of the Great Dane’s growing problems that is their bone health not developing correctly;
  • Great and precise information on who can benefit from this product and how to use it as well as an extensive ingredients list;


  • Does not contain other flavour options, so if your dog has allergy to a particular ingredient, there is not even an option for switching to another formula;

A Great Dane food that provides a quality ageing by dealing with possible issues that can arise from this breed. This is one of those dog foods that will do everything for you and you should simply keep an eye on possible allergies.

I advise this for any Great Dane that has grown and shows signs to get very large because this supports giant breeds. Do not feed this to puppies as it does not contain the right type of diet for that age.

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Eukanuba Dry Dog Food Adult

Until now, this is the dog food that comes with the biggest amount of types of food to choose from. There is the chicken dog food, chicken – small bite, Lamb & Rice, Chicken – small breed (This one does not interest us), Lamb & Rice – Large Breed (This is optimal for a Great Dane) and Chicken – Large breed (Also optimal for Great Danes). Contains multiple sizes to choose from as well.

Chicken or Lamb are the first ingredients that contain in the Eukanuba dry dog food depending on the flavour you choose. You should go for the Large Breed packages; they are the best for the breed I am referring to in this article.

The nutrition in this food is of high quality and focuses on reducing tartar accumulation on your dog’s teeth as well as a big plus.


  • Combats tartar buildup – focus on dental health;
  • Great reviews and quality-proven ingredients;
  • Multiple options to choose from;
  • Great support for your dog’s skin, fur and coat as well;


  • Might need to adjust food intake based on your dog’s weight and age. Take into account that Great Danes consume less than other breeds of the same weight, so they should consume even less than it is advised for a dog of its weight. Divide the portion you’ll be feeding your dog in a day into multiple meals to get the most out of this.

This is a great option for owners of multiple dog breeds because the EUKANUBA Adult Dry Dog Food has multiple formulas for all dog sizes in both chicken and lamb flavours. Everyone can get something out of this, and the focus on preventing tartar from building up in your dog’s teeth is a great plus for the food’s qualities.

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Nutro Natural Choice Dry Dog Food Limited Ingredients

Nutro is an excellent choice for owners of large breeds, and the best of all is that it has a package that is optimised for puppies!

Most of the dog foods are not the best treats for puppies in their early ages, but this is specifically for larger breed puppies with less than 1 year of a lifetime. The ingredients included in this dog food are essential for healthy growth and the development of your dog’s perceptions and intelligence. They also include benefits that aid in bone strength and healthy joints formulation.

This comes in another three styles: Adult, Senior and “small bites”. With three different package sizes as well, this is overall an excellent dog food to take into account when deciding what to give to your Great Dane throughout any phase of its life cycle.


  • Limited number of ingredients so it helps promote digestive health in breeds that can present issues in that area, like Great Danes;
  • Promotes a healthy immune system and cellular health;
  • Balanced diet with optimal levels of vitamins;
  • Great and extensive product description;


  • Some customers have stated that their dogs had allergies and they did not know what ingredient was giving that bad effect;

A great product that finally has an option for puppies of larger breeds, as well as options for all other ages as well. With a great reputation and quality ingredients, this dog food stands out as being one of the best in the market, even if it is not one of the most recognised ones.

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Eagle Pack Dog Food Natural Dry

The Eagle Pack Natural Dry Dog Food has the focus on giving a balanced diet for your dogs. It is complete, and all ingredients are natural. They have formulas for large and giant breeds that contains premium ingredients like real chicken & pork to aid on their sensitive stomachs and restrictive diets.

Everything that is included is natural and does not contain that same old list of corn, wheat, meat by-products, artificial colours, flavours or preservatives.

They still have other formulas for many breed sizes and flavour preferences.

They have the plus of also offering an option for large breed puppies that contains a specific diet which aids in the development of their bones and joints. This is great because of a Great Dane issue in having their bones not grow optimally.

There are also two unique options with reduced fat and for dogs that are extremely active with a demanding diet schedule.


  • Great history of quality food made in the USA;
  • Made for all types of dogs with many types of formulas;
  • Quality protein sources for a healthy digestive system;
  • Support for your dog’s skin and fur;
  • Winner in researchers and contests for one of the best dog food brands in the market until this date;


  • Contains grains in a considerable amount which might mean a reduced amount of intake in your dog’s diet. I advise to reduce in 1 cup the amount of daily consumption of your great Dane just to ensure there is no risk of a digestive problem;


  • Remember to not exercise your dog after eating; this contains considerable amounts of carbohydrates if using one of their formulas that is not optimised for Great Danes. The best course of action is always to give your dog the large breed food package and your puppies their package for puppies to ensure a healthy and natural growth.

Very famous and of high reputation, this brand is trustworthy and contains many pros regarding the included ingredients and their quality. They have antioxidant support for the immune system of your dog, vitamins and minerals that are essential as well as quality protein sources. Overall, a great brand and I couldn’t recommend it enough.

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Castor & Pollux Organix Dog Food Dry

The Castor & Pollux dog food is very well known and has a high reputation between dog owners, especially those that own a dog of larger breed like the Great Dane. This food is made with organic ingredients including chicken and brown rice. They come with the adult package, puppy package, weight management special diet and a flavour for large breed adults.

It might be worth mentioning that since their formula is not focused on being extra enriched and does not offer great optimisation for small breeds, the puppy package can be given to a Great Dane puppy since it doesn’t require a big amount of consumption.

There are no chemical pesticides, synthetic fertilisers, artificial preservatives, growth hormones or antibiotics in their formulas so you shouldn’t worry about industrial elements that might harm your dog’s health.

It is made in the USA. Contains natural fibre that maintains a healthy intestinal health. Their food is extensively tested so the quality is of high calibre.


  • Everything is natural, contains organic food, fresh ingredients, complete and balanced nutrition for dogs of all ages;
  • Has a great benefit for healthy skin and coat since it contains omega 3 in its components;
  • Quality tested and secured with a great reputation on the market;
  • Good quality food with award-winning history;


  • There seems to be happening a series of bad reviews in regards to a fast increase in the food price in a very small time as well as a decrease in the size of the packages;
  • Reports of their quality dropping because some owners had their dogs stop craving for this food;

This food has a pretty good rating but is having a rough time right now with some price adjustments and quality management. I advise to keep this brand on your radar for future consideration since it has one of the best histories with pet owners.

These bad reviews are not many either because there are a lot of 5 stars honest reviews alongside them. If you’re thinking about trying this one, definitely give it a go since it has proven to be one of the most reliable brands for large breeds for the past years.

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Precise Holistic Complete Dog Food Large/Giant Breed

The Precise Holistic, complete dog food is specially made for large & giant breed dogs in their adult life as well as during their earliest stages of their life cycle. Yes! This is a great food for puppies as well. The nutrition provided in this food is appropriated for the necessary components in the diet of a Great Dane since it shouldn’t have a very enriched diet.

It contains a bit of extra nutrition to help to build muscle tissue for dogs in their growing stage. Should be given in smaller parts to puppies since it contains a considerable amount of carbs because it states to attempt to give your puppies a lot of energy, which doesn’t end well with the Great Dane breed.


  • Good ingredients list as well as being specifically made for large and giant breeds;
  • Does not contain extreme amounts of nutrients;
  • Perfect for dogs with allergy problems;


  • Protein amount is 25% and 1.30% calcium, being slightly above average what is said to be the best for Great Danes;
  • The consumption has to be lowered a little since it seems to give considerable amounts of energy;

The Precise holistic adult dog food is overall very good and has steady 5 stars reviews everywhere online. It is actually very little known and is a small company, but they are very delicate with maintaining quality as well as offering a distinctive product from the rest. I highly recommend to at least give this a shot since it is growing in reputation across pet owners.

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What Should be Included in My Great Dane Diet?

When talking proteins, usually Great Danes should stay around 20-25% of protein consumption. This can range as low as 12% or as high as 50% depending on the food you are buying, but it is usually better to average based on your dog’s age, height and weight.

When talking calories, you can expect to be feeding your dog about 1600 – 1900 calories in adult life. That is considerably lower than other breeds of similar height and weight, so Great Danes actually don’t eat much at all.

Because of their relaxed behaviour, Great Danes shouldn’t have diets that are full of carbs or energy-giving ingredients. They shouldn’t eat too much grain as well because they have digestive issues.

How Much do Great Danes Eat?

Not much, not at all. Compared to breeds of the same size or weight, they eat significantly fewer calories per day than other large breeds. In general, a Great Dane that weighs around 120 can be expected to eat about 2000 calories daily or even less. The older it gets, the less it is anticipated to eat because it gets more and more inactive.

Females eat less than males as it’s expected, so you should be giving a female about 200 less calories a day compared to a male.

Low or High Protein Diet For My Great Dane Puppy?

Medium to low protein consumption is the advised for Great Danes, especially puppies which should be lower. This is because of a particular problem during their youth in which their bones grown too fast and they don’t develop them to their full extent. This is called hypertrophic osteodystrophy. Maintaining 20-25% levels in adult level and about 15% for puppies is a safe bet to ensure a healthy diet for your Great Dane.

Can I Give Additional Treats Alongside the Dog Food?

It is advised to keep the food consumption in check, so if you’re giving additional treats, make sure to cut on the amount of food on the next meal then. This is better to avoid issues in the stomach or having them consume too many calories. But, that aside, yes, it is advised to give your dog treats. They love feeling rewarded when they did something their owner liked, so just keep the diet in check and you two will have a great time together.

Video: Feeding Large Breed Puppies

Click here to see video.


Now that we’ve seen the best dog foods that are available now in 2017 for this great dog breed, you’ll be able to understand your dog much better.

The products we’ve covered are definitely the best in the market when considering the quality of the ingredients and the benefits they offer to your dog.

From the necessary ingredients, protein consumption, how to feed your dog, differences between Great Danes and other breeds and what should be included in their diet, I’ve covered everything you need to know to understand your pet well.

Great Danes are friendly companions, and are ones that should be treated with some considerations in mind. Puppy or big boy, all Great Danes pack a big body and a very, very big heart.

If you’re interested in reading similar articles, here’s good one on Best Dog Food for Dealing with Arthritis. We’ve also posted a good guide Best Low Sodium Dog Food.

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