10 Best High-Calorie Dog Food in 2024 – Start a Healthy Diet for Your Pup

When it comes to dog diets, vets usually prescribe low-calorie foods, whilst some breeds require high-calorie types in order to thrive and develop. There are various brands of quality food on the market; you just need to know which one to go for. In order to help you make the right choice, we have made a list of the best high-calorie dog food you can find today.

The foods we are about to list are calorie dense and are a very good choice for active dogs that need a lot of energy throughout the day. These foods are also a fantastic pickup for dogs that struggle to gain or maintain a healthy weight, which is something that may occur in some breeds. Our research brought us ten excellent products that we want to share with you, so without any delay, let us start.

List of Best High-Calorie Dog Food

1. Solid Gold Grain Free Dry Dog

Solid Gold Grain Free Dry Dog

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Solid Gold Grain is a type of food that is specifically designed for dogs that have higher energy requirements. You have three options to pick from – beef, beef, eggs and peas, and duck. All of these options are jam-packed with everything your dog needs and offer 415 kcal per cup.

The recipe with pea protein offers excellent nutritive value, and this formula boosts protein content even more. Plant proteins grant extra energy in high-calorie formulas, so they serve as an extra push in your pooch’s diet. When it is all mixed with beef and ocean fish, it is really strong and nutritive.

Ocean fish is also high in fat and increases crude fat content by eighteen percent, which is a pretty good boost. It is also packed with omega-3 fatty acids that are also excellent for a healthy coat and prosperous immune system. Overall, this is a very good food for active dogs and worthy of the first spot on our list.

2. Purina ONE Natural, Weight Control Dry Dog Food

Purina ONE Natural

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Purina ONE is the second-best food we found in our research and is highly effective in dog diets for calorie increase. It offers 320 calories per cup, and it is a pretty dense formula that will help your pet bring up the weight in a healthy and tasty way.

The protein content of this food stands at 27 percent, which is a very good amount. On the other hand, it also contains 12 percent of fat, 5.5 percent of fiber, and 12 percent of moisture. When it is all said and done, this food will not make your pet fat, but it will improve its body mass.

The primary ingredient of this recipe is turkey, which provides a taste that every dog enjoys. Moreover, it is rich in high-quality protein, which is always good for animal nutrition. The healthy dose of fiber in this food will make your dog feel fuller for longer, and extra vitamins and antioxidants are great for health and overall well-being.

3. Bully Max High Performance Super Premium Dog Food

Bully Max High Performance Super Premium Dog Food

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Bully Max is a fantastic high-calorie food that, although a bit more expensive, is well worth it if you care about your dog’s quality nutrition. The results will start showing really fast, and your dog will certainly feel much healthier and more satisfied.

This is a high-protein and high-calorie recipe designed specifically to increase your dog’s performance. It features real meat from chicken, which is the primary source of protein, and since it contains 30 percent of protein and 20 percent of fat, the energy value is guaranteed.

It is a food that any dog breed from the age of four weeks can consume seamlessly. The food does not contain any artificial flavors, colors, preservatives, or other ingredients that can harm your pet’s organism, and since it is jam-packed with vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, it will be highly beneficial for its health.

4. CRAVE Grain Free Adult Dry Dog Food with Protein from Chicken

CRAVE Grain Free Adult Dry Dog Food with Protein from Chicken

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Crave Grain-Free Adult Dry Dog Food is a special recipe from the Crave store that is both healthy and tasty for your four-legged friends. The formula provides all the necessary nutrients that will make your pooch prosper and grow in a healthy fashion.

It is a wet dog food that mixes real turkey as the primary ingredient with fruits and vegetables that all combined grant omega fatty acids, vitamins, and antioxidants that contribute to your pet’s health and well-being. The food is excellent for dogs of all sizes and for puppies as well.

Each case of this food offers twelve cans, meaning that you will be able to stock up for a very good price. Being grain-free, high in protein, and low in carbs, this is a perfect food for any active dog whose performance you want to increase and make its life healthier and more prosperous.

5. Instinct Grain Free Dry Dog Food

Instinct Grain Free Dry Dog Food

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Instinct offers a formula that provides kibble coated in freeze-dried raw protein, which makes a perfect mixture of benefits that come with raw and dry dog food. It is a recipe that has a very high 37 percent protein content and 20 percent of fat content, which combines for a total of 518 kcal per serving.

Chicken is the very first ingredient in this food, which is a lean animal protein that is a source of essential amino acids that are highly important for the development of lean muscles in your pets. Your four-legged friend will get maximum bioavailability out of this recipe since nearly 70 percent of the formula is based on real animal ingredients.

The remaining 30 percent of this formula are whole fruits and veggies, which provide excellent antioxidant sources, vitamins, and minerals. You will find no grain, corn, wheat, soy, or by-products in this food, as these ingredients can cause adverse effects in sensitive dogs. It is a great pickup for both underweight dogs and active ones.

6. Blue Buffalo Wilderness High Protein

Blue Buffalo Wilderness High Protein

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Blue Buffalo Wilderness is a pet food manufacturer that prides itself on creating foods inspired by the natural diets of dog ancestors. Of course, these diets are based on high amounts of protein and are free of grains, and this particular product is no different in that way.

This product features 30 percent of protein content, and fat fiber and moisture stand at 13, 10, and 10 percent, respectively. It is a versatile formula that provides your pup with everything it needs for a healthy and active life as well as optimal growth.

What makes this product stand out is that it prevents your dog’s weight gain by using L-carnitine, which is a nutrient that boosts metabolism and assists in burning fat while also promoting the development of lean muscle tissue. A single serving of this food grants 353 calories per serving, which is enough for your pet to prosper and improve performance.

7. ZIWI Peak Air-Dried Dog Food

ZIWI Peak Air-Dried Dog Food

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Ziwi is a dog food manufacturer from New Zealand that made a name for itself by producing high-quality foods that make dogs prosper. This particular formula is extremely calorie-dense, and each cup of this food brings 312 calories to the table for your four-legged friend.

It contains one of the highest protein concentrations on our list, standing at 38 percent, while the fat content is also at a very high level at 30 percent. Even if your pet is picky, it will find this food very tasty as it mixes fresh meat, green mussels, and bones, which dogs find very appealing and juicy.

This Ziwi product uses air-drying technology in the manufacturing process, which preserves the ingredients in a natural way. It is a method that gets rid of the need for preservatives and needs for rehydration since air-dried kibbles contain even more moisture. Although it is one of the most expensive formulas on the market, it is worth every penny.

8. Merrick Dry Puppy Food

Merrick Dry Puppy Food

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Merrick Dry Puppy Food is a fantastic nutritive source that does a fantastic job of helping active puppies and young dogs that struggle with maintaining a healthy weight while growing. It is a formula that is rich in top-notch protein sources and healthy fats that combined grant 400 kcal per serving.

This recipe also possesses 28 percent of crude protein, which is sourced from real deboned beef and lamb meal. As you probably know, these particular red meats are a fantastic source of the essential amino acids that are necessary for proper muscle development in dogs. You will also find that this food is packed with vitamins and minerals like iron.

Merric Dry Puppy Food also features taurine, which is highly important for normal heart function in young dogs. Puppies spend a lot of energy they gain, so feeding them with this food will encourage proper development, high performance, and a full belly.

9. Wellness Complete Health Senior Dry Dog Food with Grains

Wellness Complete Health Senior Dry Dog Food with Grains

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This dog food is produced by Wellness Complete and is specifically formulated to aid nutrition in our aging four-legged friends. This recipe offers 416 kcal per serving, and it is incredibly calorie-dense, which grants fast weight gain, which is sometimes necessary for senior dogs.

A single serving of this food provides 22 percent of protein, 10 percent of fat, 4.25 percent of fiber, and 10 percent of moisture, while the rest are vitamins, minerals, and fatty acids that do an incredible job of enhancing your dog’s health and well-being.

Another great thing about this food is that dogs absolutely love it. It is packed with tasty ingredients such as deboned chicken, carrots, blueberries, and apples. Chondroitin and glucosamine are excellent addition to this food for senior dogs, as they promote healthier joints, while taurin promotes heart health as well.

10. NUTRO NATURAL CHOICE Healthy Food for Large Breeds

NUTRO NATURAL CHOICE Healthy Food for Large Breeds

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If you are in the market for healthy food for large breeds of dogs that are very active, then Nutro Natural Choice might be precisely what you need. It is a product that combines protein and fiber in a way it encourages building healthy weight in your dogs while also promoting their health.

This food is made using only real, high-quality chicken and contains plenty of antioxidants and fiber. Another great thing about it is that it is made with non-GMO ingredients and does not contain any artificial flavors, corn, wheat, soy, or any other ingredient that may affect sensitive dogs negatively.

From small-breed seniors to large-breed puppies and everything in between, this dry dog food is made to provide sufficient nutrition and support your four-legged friend’s health and well-being. It does come at a bit higher price, but the packages offer plenty of food to stock up and are absolutely worth the cost.

Things to Consider Before Purchasing High-Calorie Dog Food

best high-calorie dog food considerations

When browsing for high-calorie food for your pets, you want to purchase only the best of the best. Since the market is currently swamped with products of different qualities, picking the right one is challenging. Luckily there are certain aspects that make quality dog food, and we are going to list them in the section below.

Calories per Serving

Since you want to get high-calorie food for your four-legged friend, calories per serving are a highly important factor to consider. This means that the portion should offer nutritive value above the usual norm. Look for food that offers more than 300 kcal per serving, as it is considered calorie-dense and thus will work for a dog that requires more nutrition.


Regardless of the food, you decide to opt for, the most important thing to ensure is that it is made using only high-quality ingredients. Browse for easily digestible proteins from real meat such as beef, chicken, turkey, lamb, or fish.

It is also important to look for ingredients such as wholesome grains, fruits, and vegetables for extra punch in the nutritional sense. Since these foods are usually made for active dogs, you should look for formulas with additional joint, bone, and digestive support that can help a lot in their development.

Life Stage and Size of Your Dog

When browsing for dog food, the life stage is an essential factor to consider. For example, high-calorie and high-fat foods are excellent for active puppies and adult dogs, while senior dogs with lower appetites that need to gain weight will benefit mostly from high-calorie food.

These foods are made for active dogs or those who need to gain weight rather than just being based on breed and size. Every dog food has a manufacturer’s description that goes into detail about which life stage and size of dog it is meant for, so make sure to check it before spending any money.

Weight Gain Dog Food

Protein Content

When people notice that their dogs are becoming underweight, they usually react by increasing the quantity of their food. However, often enough, this is a mistake since they should first check if the food they are serving meets their nutritional needs.

If it is not the case, browse for foods that have a high amount of protein in their composition. Protein is a primary bodybuilding nutrient in dogs, and thus it is an essential part of their diet. A huge amount of calories from protein go into building lean mass rather than being stored as fat, making it a much healthier option to go for.

Always Choose Quality Over Quantity

The quality of nutrition is essential for dogs just as it is for humans in terms of health. To attract more customers, some dog food manufacturers put huge amounts of filler ingredients in their foods to increase the quantity without increasing the price.

With that said, it would be wise to study the product carefully and avoid going for it just because it seems like a cost-efficient option. Instead, you should check the ingredient label to make sure it is free of filler ingredients such as corn, soy, and wheat, as all of these can be harmful to dogs with sensitive bellies.

Frequently Asked Questions

best high-calorie dog food faq

1. What is the best way to fatten your dog?

To increase the weight of a dog, it is essential to increase its daily calorie intake, and high-calorie foods can do just that. These foods are an excellent choice for this purpose as they are designed to increase nutrient absorption and improve digestibility. They are also very rich in healthy nutrients such as vitamins, minerals, and amino acids.

2. What type of meat is best for increasing your dog’s weight?

Some good meat choices for fattening your dog include beef, turkey, chicken, pork, or fish. Also, a good source of food rich in vitamin B, such as liver, is excellent for putting that extra weight on your four-legged friend.

3. What is the fastest way to fatten your dog?

Adding high-calorie foods to your dog’s diet is only one of the ways to increase its weight. You can also increase the amounts of food you are feeding it, add fat to its diet, add more meat and fish to its meal, or incorporate nourishing supplements.

4. Should I Avoid Economy Brands of Dog Food?

As is the case with most consumer products, you only get the quality you are paying for. Economy brands of dog food generally use the cheapest ingredients available, which offer lower energy values, and the proteins are lower grade.

If you own an active dog or a dog that has problems maintaining a healthy weight, you should not cheap out on its food and avoid buying economy brands.

Final Words

Any dog that leads an active lifestyle or has issues gaining weight should be fed top-of-the-line high-calorie food. Meeting daily calorie requirements will ensure that they have the energy to stay active and remain healthy.

All products we have listed are excellent for dogs that require more nutrition in their diets; the question is only which one will suit their needs best. Study our buying guide closely, and check the manufacturer’s description to determine which age and size their products are for, and you will, without any doubt, make the right choice.