In Search of the Best Dog Food for Rottweilers
So, you’ve looked far and wide for the best chow for your Rottmonster and ended up none the wiser. Large or small kibble, nutrient-to-calorie ratio, the proper amount of Omega fatty acids—with so many options and requirements, one can easily get lost in the vast offer of dog food.
Fortunately, some of us at Alpha Paw are Rottweiler moms and dads like many of our readers. Because they have already gone through the ordeal of buying and dismissing brands that failed to meet the nutritional needs of these big dogs, they made our job a bit easier.
That is why we figured the best way to approach this topic is to let them compile a list of the best brands of grub for Rottweilers and then double-check their health-beneficial claims about those brands against the findings of our research.
Now’s a good time to mention that Alpha Paw’s reviews are not part of the marketing efforts of any brand of dog food. By choosing not to profit from affiliate links, we can write unbiased reviews with our readers’ best interests in mind.
Before we begin our assessment, we do have our very own Alpha Paw dog food called Natural Vitality™ that is vet-approved and fast becoming the go-to brand for pet parents. Our chicken and sweet potato recipe is made to support all dog breeds for all of their life stages. Formulated with purposeful ingredients in accordance with AAFCO guidelines, our dog food is a natural source of protein, carbohydrates, and healthy fats.
How We Chose the Best Rottweiler Dog Food
You already learned from our other reviews that we are rather thorough when we evaluate dog food.
To do this, we:
- Talk to vets
- Read unbiased reviews, and
- Check whether a particular brand delivers on its promises of health benefits.
Veterinarians give us a deeper insight into proper dog nutrition. They filter out the most common misconceptions about the canine diet and help us find the right amount of nutrients in dog food for different breeds.
We then read as many verified reviews as we can to learn more about a brand from other people’s hands-on experience. It saves us a bunch of time and offers a broader picture of the brand.
Finally, we test the food by giving it to our furry assistants and checking to see if they indeed feel the benefits of a new diet. Last but not least, we try to find out what flavors they prefer and fit them into the right profile of the food.
What We Avoided in the Best Dry Dog Food for Rottweilers
There are a few standards we followed during our search for healthy dietary options for Rottweilers.
We treated the following benchmarks as the bare minimum of conditions dog food has to meet to be considered health-beneficial:
- The main protein source should be a named type of meat. This means that we kept away from suspicious items such as “meat/fish/poultry meal.” These so-called meals are a valuable source of protein, but they can come from all sorts of animals, including diseased and disabled animals.
- Every ingredient in the food, including meat, grain, and vegetable, should be wholesome. For instance, processing grains many times makes them more digestible for dogs, but it also removes the majority of nutrients.
- The food shouldn’t contain artificial colors, flavors, or harmful preservatives. Enhancing food with artificial colors and flavors is another red flag. Makes you wonder, what did it taste and look like before it was boosted with those chemicals? The same goes for preservatives—food made from fresh and wholesome ingredients isn’t meant to last for months after opening a bag, so why extend the expiration date? There are means to preserve food for as long as possible, but using artificial preservatives should not be one of them.
- The food should provide complete nutrition. This means that it can be used as one of the main meals as opposed to complementary nutrition, which denotes products used as additions to the pooch’s main diet.
So What Is the Best Dog Food for My Rottweiler?
After the consultations with vets and recommendations from Rottweilers’ parents, we ended up with a shortlist of 12 brands our furballs tested.
Out of those 12, we chose not only the best overall but also the second-best, the best option for buyers on a budget, the most appropriate food for Rottweiler puppies, and the best for Rottweilers in their senior years.
|Alpha Paw Picks||Brand||Rating|
|Best overall||Horizon Legacy Adult Grain-Free Dry Dog Food||4.9|
|Runner-up||Earthborn Holistic Large Breed Recipe||4.8|
|Best on a budget||Diamond Naturals Large Breed Adult Dog Lamb Meal & Rice Formula||4.8|
|Best for puppies||Blue Buffalo Life Protection Formula Puppy Chicken and Brown Rice Recipe||4.7|
|Best for seniors||ORIJEN Senior Dry Dog Food||4.7|
Our Top Pick for the Best Dog Food for Rottweilers: Horizon Legacy Adult Grain-Free Dry Dog Food
Image source: Horizon Pet Food
From kibble size to protein-to-fat ratio Horizon Legacy Adult Grain-Free Dry Dog Food, this chow beat all of the other contenders across the board!
Over the course of three months, muscle mass in some of our more active pooches increased, while their owners reported that dogs showed higher energy levels and increased stamina when exercising. No wonder, given that the amount of protein in this food is higher than the industry average and is sourced from one of the leanest and most protein-packed meats—chicken, turkey, and salmon.
This food has a near-perfect protein-to-fat ratio, with just the right amount of linoleic acid that after a couple of weeks made a visible change to Rottweilers’ coat—their fur became shinier and silkier.
Aware of the importance of micronutrients, the producer adds fresh veggies—like broccoli, bok choy, and carrots—as well as fruits—such as blueberries and apples—to meet the nutritional needs of a big doggo.
This food is bursting with minerals in chelated form for easier absorption into the tissues for stronger bones and teeth.
Knowing that the joints of large breed dogs are under more pressure due to their bigger bodies, the producer enhances the food with Yucca schidigera, a plant known to promote the health of joints and alleviate inflammation.
|Crude protein||34.0% min|
|Crude fat||15.0% min|
|Crude fiber||3.5% max|
|Omega 3 Fatty Acids||3% min|
|Omega 3 Fatty Acids||6% min|
Chicken, Chicken Meal, Pea, Pea Starch, Turkey Meal, Chicken Fat (Preserved With Mixed Tocopherols, Source Of Vitamin E), Salmon Meal, Pea Fibre, Flaxseed, Egg Product, Salmon Oil (Preserved With Mixed Tocopherols, Vitamin E), Carrots, Apples, Broccoli, Bok Choy, Cabbage, Blueberries, Salt, Fructooligosaccharides, Yucca Schidiger A Extract, Dried Aspergillus Niger Fermentation Extract, Dried Aspergillus Oryzae Fermentation Extract, Pineapple, Dried Trichoderma Longibrachiatum Fermentation Extract, Dried Rhizopus Oryzae Fermentation Extract, Dried Enterococcus Faecium Fermentation Product, Dried Lactobacillus Casei Fermentation Product, Dried Lactobacillus Acidophilus Fermentation Product, Dried Bifidobacterium Bifidum Fermentation Product, And Dried Lactobacillus Plantarum Fermentation Product, Vitamin A Acetate, Vitamin D3 Supplement, Vitamin E Supplement, Vitamin 812 Supplement, Riboflavin, Niacin, Folic Acid, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Thiamine Mononitrate , D-calcium Pantothenate, Biotin, L-ascorbyl-2-polyphosphate (Source Of Vitamin C), Ferrous Sulphate, Iron Proteinate*, Zinc Sulphate, Zinc Proteinate*, Manganous Oxide, Manganese Proteinate*, Copper Sulphate, Copper Proteinate*, Calcium Iodate, Selenium Yeast, Magnesium Oxide.
Our Second-Best Pick: Earthborn Holistic Large Breed Recipe
Image source: Pet Flow
Earthborn Holistic Large Breed Recipe is another chow that lives up to producer’s promises of providing complete and balanced nutrition for big doggies such as Rottweilers.
This is a grain-, potato-, and gluten-free recipe that comes as close to the dog’s ancestral diet as possible, with the premium-quality chicken meal that supports muscle development and functioning.
Infused with whole fruits and vegetables, it successfully meets the nutritional needs of the pooches and gives them extra energy for the day.
A healthy amount of lipids as the source of health-beneficial fatty acids is coupled with L-carnitine, which helps to burn excess fat and helps your furry companion maintain the right weight.
With this grub, you won’t have to worry about your canine’s joint and cartilage health— glucosamine and chondroitin sulfate will take care of it.
High-quality ingredients and processing technologies make sure this food is highly digestible and has helped our pooches have a regular stool.
The kibble pieces are medium-sized, which means that they took some effort to crunch, preventing the dog from devouring them and having their tummies bloat, which is particularly important for Rottweilers as they are known as voracious.
The importance of micronutrients cannot be stressed enough, and this producer is well aware of it. Earthborn Holistic adds fresh peas, spinach, carrots, apples, blueberries, and cranberries to this recipe to preserve the most vitamins and minerals, enough to meet your dog’s daily nutritional requirements.
|Crude protein||26.0% min|
|Crude fat||13.0% min|
|Crude fiber||5% max|
|Docosahexaenoic Acid (DHA)||0.05% min|
|Vitamin E||250 IU/kg min|
|Ascorbic Acid (Vitamin C)||100 mg/kg min|
|L-Carnitine||50 mg/kg min|
|Beta-Carotene||5 mg/kg min|
|Omega-6 Fatty Acids||2.5% min|
|Omega-3 Fatty Acids||0.9% min|
|Glucosamine||400 mg/kg min|
|Chondroitin Sulfate||250 mg/kg min|
Chicken Meal, Peas, Tapioca, Chicken Fat (preserved with Mixed Tocopherols), Ground Flaxseed, Pea Fiber, Dried Egg, Whitefish Meal, Natural Flavors, Dicalcium Phosphate, Blueberries, Cranberries, Apples, Carrots, Spinach, Potassium Chloride, Salt, Choline Chloride, DL-Methionine, L-Lysine, Taurine, Glucosamine Hydrochloride, Chondroitin Sulfate, Yucca Schidigera Extract, L-Carnitine, Beta-Carotene, Vitamin A Supplement, Vitamin D3 Supplement, Vitamin E Supplement, Zinc Sulfate, L-Ascorbyl-2-Polyphosphate (source of Vitamin C), Ferrous Sulfate, Niacin, Calcium Pantothenate, Riboflavin Supplement, Copper Sulfate, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Thiamine Mononitrate, Manganese Sulfate, Zinc Proteinate, Manganese Proteinate, Copper Proteinate, Calcium Iodate, Cobalt Carbonate, Folic Acid, Sodium Selenite, Biotin, Vitamin B12 Supplement, Dried Enterococcus Faecium Fermentation Product, Dried Lactobacillus Casei Fermentation Product, Dried Lactobacillus Acidophilus Fermentation Product.
Best On A Budget: Diamond Naturals Large Breed Adult Dog Lamb Meal & Rice Formula
Image source: Amazon
It seems that Diamond Naturals Large Breed Adult Dog Lamb Meal & Rice Formula successfully bridges the gap between the quality of ingredients and palatability, on the one side, and the price of the product, on the other.
Unlike many others, the producer of this food does not compromise the quality to make the food more affordable, and with ingredients such as pasture-raised lamb, we’re not even sure how they do it!
All we know is that this chow helped our dogs maintain weight while munching happily on it, thanks to guaranteed levels of probiotics that promote healthy digestion and prevent bloating.
This food is also packed with superfoods like kale, chia seed, pumpkin, and blueberries that provide essential micronutrients and maintain the balance of crucial macronutrients in the pooch’s body.
If we judged different foods only by the benefits they derived for the health of skin and coat, this brand would probably take the first prize—our dogs’ coats have never been silkier than on this kibble.
If you’re looking for trusted and sustainable ingredients processed in line with the highest food safety standards for a reasonable price, you should look no further than Diamond Naturals.
|Crude protein||22.0% min|
|Crude fat||12.0% min|
|Crude fiber||4% max|
|Zinc||150 mg/kg min|
|Vitamin A||15,000 IU/kg min|
|Vitamin E||150 IU/kg min|
|L-Carnitine||300 mg/kg min|
|Omega-6 Fatty Acids||2% min|
|Omega-3 Fatty Acids||0.3% min|
|Glucosamine||750 mg/kg min|
|Chondroitin Sulfate||250 mg/kg min|
Lamb meal, whole grain brown rice, cracked pearled barley, oatmeal, grain sorghum, dried yeast, rice bran, egg product, chicken fat (preserved with mixed tocopherols), dried beet pulp, natural flavor, flaxseed, potassium chloride, salt, DL-Methionine, choline chloride, taurine, glucosamine hydrochloride, dried chicory root, L-Carnitine, kale, chia seed, pumpkin, blueberries, oranges, quinoa, dried kelp, coconut, spinach, carrots, papaya, yucca schidigera extract, dried Lactobacillus plantarum fermentation product, dried Bacillus subtilis fermentation product, dried Lactobacillus acidophilus fermentation product, dried Enterococcus faecium fermentation product, dried Bifidobacterium animalis fermentation product, vitamin E supplement, beta carotene, chondroitin sulfate, iron proteinate, zinc proteinate, copper proteinate, ferrous sulfate, zinc sulfate, copper sulfate, potassium iodide, thiamine mononitrate, manganese proteinate, manganous oxide, ascorbic acid, vitamin A supplement, biotin, niacin, calcium pantothenate, manganese sulfate, sodium selenite, pyridoxine hydrochloride, vitamin B12 supplement, riboflavin, vitamin D supplement, folic acid.
Best for Puppies: Blue Buffalo Life Protection Formula Puppy Chicken and Brown Rice Recipe
Image source: Amazon
Made with the tiniest of whelps in mind, Blue Buffalo Life Protection Formula Puppy Chicken and Brown Rice Recipe hits all the right spots when it comes to puppy nutrition.
With this specially designed formula that supports the development and growth of pups, you can rest assured that your puppy’s dietary needs will be satisfied until adulthood.
It has a near-perfect ratio of calcium and phosphorus, the two minerals responsible for bone development, coupled with premium-quality deboned chicken as the first protein source.
Puppies deserve only the highest-quality ingredients, so this food is made using no meat by-products and artificial flavors and preservatives, and the producer doesn’t opt for cheap fillers such as corn. Instead, this chow contains whole grain brown rice, oatmeal, and barley as the source of slow-releasing energy.
This food does not skimp on quality lipids, either. Linoleic acid is sourced from eggs and fish oil as some of the best places to look for health-beneficial fats.
For dog owners on a budget, this food may appear pricey. However, the puppies that tested this chow seemed to eat less of it, so you should also factor this in when making a choice.
We believe quality comes before price. With this food, feeding smaller portions has turned out to be more beneficial for the health of our pooches than giving them tons of more affordable brands that use inexpensive ingredients.
|Crude protein||27.0% min|
|Crude fat||16.0% min|
|Crude fiber||5% max|
|Omega-3 Fatty Acids||0.75% min|
|Omega-6 Fatty Acids||3% min|
Deboned Chicken, Chicken Meal, Brown Rice, Oatmeal, Barley, Menhaden Fish Meal (source of Omega 3 Fatty Acids), Peas, Chicken Fat (preserved with Mixed Tocopherols), Flaxseed (source of Omega 6 Fatty Acids), Natural Flavor, Dried Tomato Pomace, Dried Egg Product, Pea Protein, Fish Oil (source of ARA-Arachidonic Acid and DHA-Docosahexaenoic Acid), Salt, Potassium Chloride, Choline Chloride, Dehydrated Alfalfa Meal, Dicalcium Phosphate, Potatoes, Dried Chicory Root, Pea Fiber, Alfalfa Nutrient Concentrate, Calcium Carbonate, DL-Methionine, preserved with Mixed Tocopherols, Vitamin E Supplement, Sweet Potatoes, Carrots, Garlic, Zinc Amino Acid Chelate, Zinc Sulfate, Vegetable juice for color, Ferrous Sulfate, Iron Amino Acid Chelate, Blueberries, Cranberries, Barley Grass, Parsley, Turmeric, Dried Kelp, Yucca Schidigera Extract, Niacin (Vitamin B3), Calcium Pantothenate (Vitamin B5), L-Carnitine, L-Ascorbyl-2-Polyphosphate (source of Vitamin C), L-Lysine, Copper Sulfate, Biotin (Vitamin B7), Vitamin A Supplement, Copper Amino Acid Chelate, Manganese Sulfate, Taurine, Manganese Amino Acid Chelate, Thiamine Mononitrate (Vitamin B1), Riboflavin (Vitamin B2) Vitamin D3 Supplement, Vitamin B12 Supplement, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride (Vitamin B6), Calcium Iodate, Dried Yeast, Dried Enterococcus faecium fermentation product, Dried Lactobacillus acidophilus fermentation product, Dried Aspergillus niger fermentation extract, Dried Trichoderma longibrachiatum fermentation extract, Dried Bacillus subtilis fermentation extract, Folic Acid (Vitamin B9), Sodium Selenite, Oil of Rosemary.
Best for Seniors: ORIJEN Senior Dry Dog Food
Image source: Amazon
There is a common misconception that senior furballs need less protein than their younger cousins, but the producer of ORIJEN Senior Dry Dog Food knows this is not true. That is why this chow bursts with protein. At 38%, you will hardly find more protein-dense grub than this one.
“Varied nutrition” gets a whole new meaning with this brand—there are over ten protein sources in this food, including fresh chicken, turkey, and herring.
Although dogs have evolved to digest carbs, ORIJEN uses only fresh veggies and fruits as the sources of micronutrients and avoids grains entirely. Not even wholesome grains have found their way to this kibble!
If your wise old doggy has a poor appetite, you should consider giving this chow a try. Thanks to the varied meat content, even our least voracious doggos came back for more whenever they were served this kibble.
|Crude protein||38.0% min|
|Crude fat||15.0% min|
|Crude fiber||8% max|
|Omega-6 Fatty Acids||2.3 % min|
|Omega-3 Fatty Acids||0.9% min|
|Glucosamine||1400 mg/kg min|
|Chondroitin sulfate||1200 mg/kg min|
Fresh chicken meat (13%), fresh whole eggs (7%), fresh turkey meat (7%), fresh whole herring (7%), fresh chicken liver (6%), fresh whole flounder (4%), fresh turkey liver (4%), fresh chicken necks (4%), fresh chicken heart (4%), fresh turkey heart (4%), chicken (dehydrated, 4%), turkey (dehydrated, 4%), whole mackerel (dehydrated, 4%), whole sardine (dehydrated, 4%), whole herring (dehydrated, 4%), whole red lentils, whole green lentils, whole green peas, lentil fiber, whole chickpeas, whole yellow peas, whole pinto beans, chicken cartilage (1%), whole navy beans, herring oil (1%), chicken fat (1%), turkey cartilage (1%), chicken liver (freeze-dried), turkey liver (freeze-dried), fresh whole pumpkin, fresh whole butternut squash, fresh whole zucchini, fresh whole parsnips, fresh carrots, fresh whole red delicious apples, fresh whole bartlett pears, fresh kale, fresh spinach, fresh beet greens, fresh turnip greens, brown kelp, whole cranberries, whole blueberries, whole saskatoon berries, chicory root, turmeric root, milk thistle, burdock root, lavender, marshmallow root, rosehips, Enterococcus faecium.
Final Thoughts on Rottweiler Dog Food Recommendations
High in protein, moderate in fat, and low in carbs—these are the main characteristics of biologically appropriate food for these big fellas. That’s what the vets told us, and that’s what we looked for in the best food for Rottweilers.
To round things off, we opted for no unnamed meat sources and kept away from artificial preservatives, colors, and flavors in order to keep the dog’s diet as natural as possible.
No matter what kibble from this list you choose, you can rest easy that your Rottweiler will get complete and balanced nutrition in line with the highest standards.
- Heugten, Kimberly Ange-van. Companion Animals: Nutritional Requirements for Working Dogs. N.C. Cooperative Extension Service, 2006.