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Best Dog Food for Goldendoodles

What’s the best dog food for a goldendoodle?

The answer to that important question depends on the AGE of YOUR particular dog.

That’s because…

Goldendoodle puppies, adults and seniors EACH have different nutritional needs.

For example…

Adult goldendoodles can thrive on ANY top-rated dog food… wet or dry.

But…

Because they’re the babies of AT LEAST ONE large-breed parent…

Goldendoodle puppies have an increased risk of developing a crippling and permanent form of hip disease… if they’re fed a diet that contains too much calcium… while they’re still growing.1

Like the tragic bone and joint damage seen in this x-ray.

X-ray of large breed dog with bilateral hip disease
Large Breed Dog with Canine Hip Dysplasia

And there are other age-related nutritional differences, too.

For example…

Older goldendoodles require more protein… and fewer calories… than younger animals.

Here’s the point…

Since there are no official nutrient guidelines for ANY specific breed…

It’s important to choose a dog food that’s designed to match the nutritional life stage of YOUR goldendoodle.

The 3 Nutritional Life Stages of a Goldendoodle

Since dog breeds age at different rates, the life stages below can be used as a guide to help you find the best possible food for your goldendoodle.2 3

Life Stage Age Puppy Under 15 to 18 months Adult Over 15 to 18 months Senior Over 7 to 10 years

Our Top Recommendations

On this page…

We’ll share The Dog Food Advisor’s safest and most recommended brands… optimized for the age of your goldendoodle.

And we’ll also answer the 6 most frequently asked questions we get about feeding goldendoodles.

The following dog foods are listed in random order. Each was chosen because it meets or exceeds our selection criteria. If you make a purchase through one of these links, we may earn a referral fee. This helps cover the cost of operation of our free blog. Thanks for your support.

Editors Choice Logo for Best Dog Food for Goldendoodles page

Best Dog Food for Goldendoodles October 2021

Here are The Dog Food Advisor’s best dog food brands for goldendoodles for October 2021.

Merrick Classic Beef and Healthy Grain Dog Food

Merrick Classic Healthy Grains

Rating:

Real Beef and Brown Rice is one of 5 dry recipes rated in our review of the Merrick Classic Healthy Grains product line.

  • First 5 ingredients: Deboned beef, pork meal, brown rice, barley, oatmeal
  • Type: Grain-inclusive (brown rice, barley, oatmeal)
  • Profile: Maintenance
  • Best for: Adults only (not suitable for puppies)

This classic Merrick kibble derives most of its meat protein from fresh deboned beef and pork meal. Dry matter label analysis reveals the recipe contains 29% protein, 17% fat and 46% estimated carbs… which yields a fat-to-protein ratio of about 58%.

The formula contains no peas, legumes or other plant-based protein boosters.

It’s also fortified with taurine, an amino acid many veterinary professionals believe may help reduce the risk of dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM), a type of heart disease found in certain breeds.

Merrick Classic is a quality, grain-inclusive dog food ideal for larger breeds. Highly recommended.

Sample buyer review… “After adopting animals that had been dropped off at my property I thought it was easy to buy cheap dogfood to keep them all nourished. Bad deal! I was contributing to poor health and obesity. I switched over to Merrick and within weeks noticed a change in weight and energy in all my pets.”

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Rachael Ray Nutrish Peak Open Prairie Dry Dog Food

Rachael Ray Nutrish Peak Open Prairie

Rating:

Open Prairie is one of 6 dry recipes covered in our review of the Rachael Ray Nutish Peak product line.

  • First 5 ingredients: Beef, chicken meal, whole dried potato, natural pork flavor, tapioca
  • Type: Grain-free
  • Profile: All Life Stages
  • Best for: Adult goldendoodles and puppies

This Rachael Ray formula derives the bulk of its meat protein from real beef and chicken meal. Dry matter label analysis reveals the recipe contains 33% protein, 17% fat and 42% estimated carbs… creating a fat-to-protein ratio of about 50%.

We also note Open Prairie contains chicken fat, whole flaxseed and menhaden fish meal… ingredients naturally rich in omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids. Each item contributes to creating healthy skin and coat. Highly recommended.

Sample buyer review… “I have three dogs . An ancient boxer mastiff , a middle aged Rottweiler & a middle aged white purebred English Bull Terrier. Finding a food that fits all of their needs has been tough! Plus one that they all three like! This food doesn’t cause allergy breakouts, diarrhea or make them turn their snouts in disgust . They all three love it & it supports all their health needs. So happy to hv discovered it. I recommend for seniors , allergy prone & active dogs . 5 stars”

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Victor Select Beef Meal and Brown Rice Dog Food

Victor Select Beef Meal and Brown Rice

Rating:

Select Beef Meal is one of 7 dry recipes discussed in our review of the Victor product line.

  • First 5 ingredients: Beef Meal, grain sorghum, whole grain brown rice, chicken fa, yeast culture
  • Type: Grain-inclusive (sorghum, brown rice)
  • Profile: All Life Stages
  • Best for: Adult goldendoodles and puppies

This Victor Select recipe derives most of its animal protein from beef meal. Dry matter label analysis reveals the recipe contains 26% protein, 13% fat and 52% estimated carbs… resulting in a favorable fat-to-protein ratio of about 50%.

Expertly formulated with 77% meat protein from premium-quality beef meal. What’s even better… there are zero plant-based protein boosters in the recipe. A fully-balanced, nutrient-rich dog food that’s ideal for goldendoodles. Reasonably priced, too. Highly recommended.

Sample buyer review… “I have a puppy who struggled with a lot of brands/recipes. We’ve tried at least 5 before settling on Victor Select. Most brands would cause diarrhea for her, but this food has been wonderful as generally being easy on her digestive system except for a few small instances. I highly recommend this food above other Victor formulas due to the lack of blood meal in this recipe. Anyway, my dog has been on this formula for about a year now, and because she’s a working dog we’re only now switching to a different, higher calorie brand as she needs to eat 6 cups a day to maintain a healthy weight. This is definitely a good food that can benefit a lot of dogs.”

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Ollie Beef Recipe Fresh Made Wet Dog Food

Ollie Fresh Dog Food

Rating:

Ollie Beef is one of 4 human-grade recipes analyzed in our review of the Ollie fresh product line.

  • First 5 ingredients: Beef, beef heart, sweet potato, peas, potato
  • Type: Grain-free
  • Profile: All Life Stages
  • Best for: Adult goldendoodles and puppies

Ollie Beef takes the majority of its meat protein from fresh beef and beef hearts. Dry matter label analysis reveals the product contains 38% protein, 31% fat and 23% estimated carbs… which creates a fat-to-protein ratio of about 83%.

A fresh, human-grade dog food that’s also nutritionally complete and balanced. A great way to offer your pet a home-made meal… without all the fuss.

Customized, pre-measured packaging to keep your dog at optimal weight. Multiple flavors and recipes, ideal for rotational feeding. A bit pricey… but worth the slightly higher cost. Highly recommended.

Sample buyer review… “Leia has a sensitive tummy and used to not eat (or throw up) her dry kibble. She literally jumps for joy when we pull Ollie out of the fridge. What a huge difference Ollie has made in our dog’s life.”

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Whole Earth Farms Grain Free with Chicken and Turkey Dry Recipe

Whole Earth Farms Grain-free with Chicken

Rating:

Chicken and Turkey is one of 9 dry recipes included in our review of the Whole Earth Farms product line.

  • First 5 ingredients: Chicken meal, turkey meal, potatoes, sweet potatoes, peas
  • Type: Grain-free
  • Profile: All Life Stages
  • Best for: Goldendoodle adults (may not be suitable for puppies)

This Whole Earth Farms recipe receives the better part of its animal protein from chicken meal and turkey meal. Dry matter label analysis reveals the recipe contains 30% protein, 16% fat and 46% estimated carbs… which produces a fat-to-protein ratio of about 52%.

Produced by top-rated Merrick Pet Care. Contains no corn, wheat, soy or artificial preservatives. Also rich in zinc, copper and other costly, chelated minerals… for superior nutrition

Reasonably priced and one of The Dog Food Advisor’s most recommended budget-friendly dog foods.

Sample buyer review… “My dog is allergic to rice, brewers yeast, and fish, and unfortunately, prescription science diet is like $80 for a small bag that only lasts him a week and a half. I was so glad to have found Whole Earth Farms, which is totally reasonably priced and truly seems like a great quality dog food. I have it on autoship and my dog seems to love it too!”

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Acana Grasslands Dry Dog Food

Acana Regionals Grassland

Rating:

Grasslands is one of 4 dry recipes evaluated in our review of the Acana product line.

  • First 5 ingredients:Deboned lamb, deboned duck, eggs, lamb meal, goat meal
  • Type: Grain-free
  • Profile: All Life Stages
  • Best for: Adult goldendoodles and puppies

This Acana Regionals recipe receives most of its meat protein from deboned lamb, deboned duck, lamb meal, and goat meal. Dry matter label analysis reveals the recipe contains 38% protein, 19% fat and 35% estimated carbs…delivering a fat-to-protein ratio of about 52%.

Produced by Champion Petfoods, the respected maker of Orijen. The company is known for advocating a meat-based, “biologically appropriate” diet.

A complete and balanced design that makes this recipe a top option for either adult or still-growing goldendoodle puppies.

Highly recommended.

Sample buyer review… “Cash, our 3-year old Goldendoodle loves this food. We recently switched from Lotus on a recommendation from my Vet-tech daughter, and he loves it. So much so, that we can even use it as training treats.”

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Purina Pro Plan Adult Shredded Blend Chicken and Rice Dry Kibble Recipe

Purina Pro Plan

Rating:

Shredded Chicken and Rice is one of 19 dry recipes included in our review of the Purina Pro Plan product line.

  • First 5 ingredients: Chicken, rice, whole grain wheat, poultry by-product meal (source of glucosamine), soybean meal
  • Type: Grain-inclusive (rice, wheat)
  • Profile: All Life Stages
  • Best for: Adult goldendoodles and puppies

The Purina Pro Plan recipe with Shredded Chicken obtains the majority of its meat protein from fresh chicken and poultry by-product meal. Dry matter label analysis reveals the recipe contains 30% protein, 18% fat and 44% estimated carbs… delivering a fat-to-protein ratio of about 62%.

We note this and all other Pro Plan adult recipes in this product line are fortified with zinc proteinate and other more costly chelated minerals… which provide superior nutrition.

A classic, field-tested, grain-inclusive design favored by veterinarians and professional breeders. Highly recommended.

Sample buyer review… “This Purina Pro Plan Adult Shredded Blend Chicken & Rice Formula Dry Dog Food is a dog food that our 2 dogs LOVED. They would sit by the bag and beg for it between mealtimes. This is a dog food that smells like real food instead of dog food. I was happy to be feeding our dogs with real ingredients and food that isn’t highly processed. It has real, quality ingredients that are actually healthy for dogs. Both of our dogs loved it and they had good energy while eating it. It is a food that I would definitley purchase for my dogs.”

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Blue Buffalo Wilderness Dry Formula

Blue Buffalo Wilderness Rocky Mountain Dry Kibble

Rating:

Rocky Mountain is one of 9 dry recipes discussed in our review of the Blue Buffalo Wilderness product line.

  • First 5 ingredients: Deboned beef, fish meal, peas, pea starch, tapioca starch
  • Type: Grain-free
  • Profile: Maintenance
  • Best for: Goldendoodle adults (not suitable for puppies)

Blue Buffalo Rocky Mountain derives the better part of its animal protein from deboned beef and fish meal. Dry matter label analysis reveals the recipe contains 33% protein, 17% fat and 42% estimated carbs… yielding a fat-to-protein ratio of about 50%.

Fortified with omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids to support healthy skin and coat.

Sample buyer review… “This is my first time feeding my 2.5 yr old a BEEF based kibble. I had moved away from grain free and found that she gained (unwanted)weight quickly on grain inclusive kibble. When looking for a grain free to get her back on I happened to see a TV ad for this food. I read reviews and went ahead and ordered . She loves it ! She has only been transitioned onto it for 3 weeks now but she looks really great.”

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Orijen Large Breed Puppy Food

Orijen Large Breed Puppy

Rating:

Large Breed Puppy is one of 9 dry recipes included in our review of the Orijen product line.

  • First 5 ingredients: Deboned chicken, deboned turkey, flounder, eggs, whole atlantic mackerel
  • Type: Grain-free
  • Profile: All Life Stages
  • Best for: Adult goldendoodles and puppies

This Orijen formula acquires the majority of its animal protein from deboned chicken and turkey, flounder, and whole Atlantic mackerel. Dry matter label analysis reveals the recipe contains 43% protein, 18% fat and 31% estimated carbs… creating a fat-to-protein ratio of about 42%.

The formula features 85% poultry and fish ingredients. So, it’s naturally rich in essential protein, vitamins and minerals. We note each piece of kibble is coated with freeze-dried liver for the optimal flavor of meat dogs crave.

A top pick for goldendoodles. Highly recommended.

Sample buyer review… “We weaned our puppy off of Eukanuba puppy food which the breeder recommended and have been using Orijen for seven months. The results are fantastic and our dog loves the food. He coat is shiny and healthy. The cost is definitely higher and we tried buying other cheaper brands (small bag to try) which had good recommendations but with no success. So far our dog has actually been eating around the other food.”

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Diamond Naturals Senior Dog

Diamond Naturals Senior Dog

Rating:

Senior Dog is one of 13 dry recipes included in our review of the Diamond Naturals product line.

  • First 5 ingredients: Chicken, chicken meal, whole grain brown rice, ground white rice, egg
  • Type: Grain-inclusive (brown rice, white rice)
  • Profile: Maintenance
  • Best for: Adults only (not suitable for puppies)

Diamond Naturals Senior Dog gets the majority portion of its animal protein from fresh chicken and chicken meal. Dry matter label analysis reveals the recipe contains 28% protein, 12% fat and 52% estimated carbs… delivering a fat-to-protein ratio of about 44%.

Contains no artificial colors, flavors or preservatives, synthetic additives that may be linked to an increased risk of cancer in older pets. Also rich in glucosamine and chondroitin to support healthy joints.

A complete and fully balanced, grain-inclusive senior recipe that’s also low in fat. Plus the formula contains only 318 kcal (calories) per cup, which can help maintain optimal weight in senior dogs. Highly recommended.

Sample buyer review… “The Diamond Naturals Senior is without a doubt the best Senior food I’ve come across in my 25+ years as a Veterinary technician, a breeder of Boxers & Wildlife rehabilitator. I’ve been using it for the past couple of generations of my Dogs beginning at 7 yrs of age & with the added glucosamine it has helped maintain my Senior Dog’s health, wellbeing & all around comfort as they age. For those with arthritis it is an integral component of their long term treatment for pain management & quality of life. I recommend this diet for all Seniors.”

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Canidae Real Salmon and Sweet Potato Dry Dog Food

Canidae Grain Free Pure

Rating:

Canidae Real Salmon and Sweet Potato is one of 10 dry recipes evaluated in our review of the Canidae product line.

  • First 5 ingredients: Salmon, salmon meal, menhaden fish meal, sweet potatoes, peas
  • Type: Grain-free
  • Profile: Maintenance
  • Best for: Goldendoodle adults (not suitable for puppies)

This Canidae formula gets most of its animal protein from fresh salmon, salmon meal, and menhaden fish meal. Dry matter label analysis reveals the recipe contains 36% protein, 20% fat and 36% estimated carbs… which yields a fat-to-protein ratio of about 56%.

We also note this nutrient-balanced formula contains iron and other chelated minerals, supplements typically found in more costly kibbles. Another top pick. Reasonably priced. Easily recommended.

Sample buyer review… “My dogs get so excited & gobble this Canidae Salmon and Sweet Potato Recipe up every time! They love it so much that I can even use them as training treats. It just never gets old for them. Even better, there have been NO tummy issues. Coats are looking great. Poops are solid and a healthy color. Plus, no weird ingredients. It’s high quality stuff! The only minor downside I would say is probably the slightly smaller quantity & smell. I reorder more frequently, now & if you really hate fish smells it could be a pretty rough 10 mins for you at feeding times. Other than that though, two thumbs up! Would definitely recommend!”

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Iams Proactive Health Large Breed Adult Dry Dog Food

Iams ProActive Health Adult Large Breed

Rating:

Adult Large Breed is one of 14 dry recipes rated in our review of the Iams product line.

  • First 5 ingredients: Chicken, ground whole grain barley, ground whole grain corn, ground whole grain sorghum, chicken by-product meal
  • Type: Grain-inclusive (barley, sorghum)
  • Profile: Maintenance
  • Best for: Goldendoodle adults (not suitable for puppies)

This Adult Large Breed formula gets the lions share of its meat protein from fresh chicken and chicken by-product meal. Dry matter label analysis reveals the recipe contains 25% protein, 13% fat and 54% estimated carbs… delivering a fat-to-protein ratio of about 53%.

This classic, grain-inclusive design contains ample amounts of essential protein with no artificial colors, flavors or preservatives. We like the fact it’s also fortified with glucosamine and chondroitin to help support healthy bones and joints.

A long-time recommendation. Reasonable priced. A nutritious recommendation for large breed dogs.

Sample buyer review… “We are transitioning our Goldendoodle puppy from the puppy version of this product to this product. Our Goldendoodle has not noticed a difference in the two types. The kibble in this type is a bit larger than the puppy counterpart. It is a good quality food for a great price.”

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American Journey Active Life Chicken. Brown Rice, and Vegetables Dry Recipe

American Journey Active Life

Rating:

Active Life is one of 9 dry recipes analyzed in our review of the American Journey product line.

  • First 5 ingredients: Deboned chicken, chicken meal, brown rice, rice bran, peas
  • Type: Grain-inclusive (brown rice, rice bran)
  • Profile: All Life Stages
  • Best for: Adult goldendoodles and puppies

American Journey Active Life draws the greatest portion of its animal protein from deboned chicken and chicken meal. Dry matter label analysis reveals the recipe contains 28% protein, 17% fat and 48% estimated carbs… producing a fat-to-protein ratio of about 60%.

We also note this recipe contains fish oil. Fish oil is naturally rich in the prized EPA and DHA type of omega-3 fatty acids. These two high quality fats boast the highest bio-availability to dogs.

A classic, grain-inclusive recipe that’s ideal for larger breeds. Highly recommended.

Depending on its level of freshness and purity, fish oil should be considered a commendable addition.

Sample buyer review… “Great food. My dog loves the taste and the small sized round flat kibble is easy for him to chew. He had SEVERAL issues with other dog foods as he has very sensitive stomach and this food is great and gives him no issues.”

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A Final Word

The Dog Food Advisor is privately owned. We do not accept money, gifts, samples or other incentives in exchange for special consideration in preparing our reviews.

However, we do receive a referral fee from online retailers (like Chewy or Amazon) and from sellers of perishable pet food when readers click over to their websites from ours. This helps cover the cost of operation of our free blog. Thanks for your support.

For more information, please visit our Disclaimer and Disclosure page.

Important FDA Alert

The FDA is investigating a potential link between diet and heart disease in dogs. Click here for details.

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