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The Best Dog Foods for Maltese to Munch On!

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Dog Food By Ben Team 16 min read August 12, 2021 55 Comments

best_maltese_dog_food

Even though they greet most people as friends they’ve yet to meet, Maltese are fantastically loyal companions who instantly endear themselves to their owners.

While their luxurious locks can make them look a bit prissy, they are surprisingly spunky pups, who are even beloved by those who typically prefer large breeds.

But to ensure they stay easy-going and energetic, you have to take very good care of them. This not only means providing proper training, exercise and grooming, but giving them a food that will keep them healthy and happy for years to come.

Best Dog Food For Maltese: Quick Picks

  • Blue Buffalo’s Small Breed Life Protection [Best Overall] Chicken and brown rice small breed recipe from a popular brand, with chicken and chicken meal as first 2 ingredients.
  • Wellness Core Grain-Free Small Breed [Best Grain-Free] Includes turkey, turkey meal, and chicken meal as first 3 ingredients for tons of animal protein your Maltese adores. Made in the USA with no corn, wheat, soy, or by-products. Also no artificial flavors or colors.
  • Merrick Lil’ Plates Small Breed [Best Chicken-Free Recipe] Features beef and lamb meal as first two ingredients. Grain-free with no gluten ingredients, and completely poultry-free for dogs with chicken allergies.

Elements to Avoid in Any Dog Food (Maltese or Otherwise)

Whether you are trying to feed a Maltese or a Mastiff, there are a few basic characteristics you should demand of any food for your pooch.

While there are rare occasions in which you may need to be a little flexible, you’ll usually want to steer clear of foods that exhibit any of the following traits:

Avoid foods lacking a whole protein at the beginning of the ingredient list.

Dogs may be omnivores, but they have a serious need for protein, which is best provided in the form of a whole protein.

Because of this, you’ll want to look for foods that feature chicken, beef, lamb, salmon, duck or some similar ingredient as the first listed item.

 Avoid foods that contain artificial colors, artificial flavors or artificial preservatives.

These types of artificial additives are often identified as allergens in dogs who suffer from food allergies, and should be avoided whenever possible. Fortunately, artificial additives are largely unnecessary and premium manufacturers now tend to avoid them.

Foods that are made with high-quality meats, carbohydrates, fruits, vegetables and fats tend to taste good on their own – there’s no reason to add artificial flavors. Artificial colors can also be left out, as they are used to make a food appear more appetizing to you – not your dog.

Similarly, naturally occurring tocopherols can be used to preserve products, so artificial preservatives are also unnecessary.

 Avoid foods that are made in countries that lack proper food-safety protocols.

Food-safety and quality-control regulations vary widely from one country to the next, so it is always wise to stick to foods that are made in countries with strict, rather than lax, procedures and protocols in place. This will not eliminate the possibility of obtaining a bag of contaminated or otherwise unsuitable food, but it significantly reduces the chances of this occurring.

By and large, this means choosing foods made in the United States, Canada, Western Europe, New Zealand or Australia.

 Avoid foods with unidentified or poorly identified meat meals or meat byproducts.

There is nothing inherently wrong with meat meals or meat byproducts. In fact, these can be valuable ingredients: Meat meals have much more protein per unit of weight than whole proteins do, and byproducts often serve as important sources of things like glucosamine. Many fish meals are also great sources of omega fatty acids.

However, some rendering plants (places where these types of products are often made) are thought to add a variety of different animals to these mixes, which may ruin the value of a food or even make it dangerous in some cases.

One way to avoid this is by only purchasing foods that contain specifically identified meat meals and byproducts. In other words, chicken byproducts are fine; poultry byproducts are not. Beef meal is fine; meat meal is not.

Maltese-Specific Dietary Guidelines

Now that you understand the things you’ll want to avoid in any dog food, it is important to recognize the breed-specific requirements for Maltese.

Some Maltese have sensitive stomachs.

This means that you’ll want to vigilantly observe your pet’s elimination habits and general health, and be mindful of ingredients that give her tummy trouble. Foods that are fortified with probiotics often help eliminate digestive problems.

 Many Maltese are picky eaters.

Unlike many large breeds and a handful of other toy breeds, who will eat anything that smells like it was alive at one point, Maltese dogs will not hesitate to refuse a food they find unpalatable.

Fortunately, most individuals exhibit definitive preferences, which, once identified, can help you select foods your pup is sure to like.

best_maltese_foods_for_dogs

 Maltese are prone to obesity.

Maltese are very small dogs, who should weigh between about 4 and 6 pounds. It doesn’t take a lot of calories to support such a small body, so even a few additional calories per week can add up.

 Some Maltese suffer from joint problems.

Since Maltese tend to suffer from canine arthritis (likely due in part to their susceptibility to obesity) it makes sense to select foods fortified with chondroitin and glucosamine, which may help prevent such problems from developing, and help repair any damage that occurs.

 Maltese often suffer from dental problems.

Generally speaking, dry kibble will keep your pup’s teeth cleaner than wet foods will, so it is generally preferable (and more affordable) to avoid wet foods when tooth decay and gum disease are concerns. Additionally, some premium kibbles also include special teeth-cleaning characteristics.

6 Best Foods for Maltese Dogs

Although there are a number of foods on the market that will keep your Maltese healthy and well-fed, the following six are clearly among the best options. Look over the following reviews, and try to select the one that best suits your individual pet and situation.

Some owners prefer to feed their dogs grain-free formulas, while others prefer to avoid this additional expense (grain-free foods are almost always pricier than comparable formulas made with grains).

To help answer different needs, we’ve compiled three different options for each: The first three products contain grains, while the last three do not.

1. Blue Buffalo Small Breed Life Protection Formula

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Blue Buffalo Small Breed Life Protection Formula

Blue Buffalo Small Breed Life Protection Formulla

Affordable grain-inclusive small-breed kibble

Meat is #1 ingredient, along with several omega-rich ingredients for healthy skin and muscles.

About: Blue Buffalo’s Small Breed Life Protection Formula is a great option for most Maltese. While it possesses an impressive ingredient list and most dogs find it delicious, it has a very competitive price point for such a premium product.

Features:

  • Deboned chicken is the first listed ingredient
  • Made with several omega-fatty-acid-rich ingredients to keep your pup’s skin and coat healthy
  • Fortified with an array of vitamins, minerals and probiotics
  • Unique, “small-bite” kibble is easy for small breeds to chew
  • Made in the USA

PROS

Most owners who tried this recipe raved about their experience. Owners love the stellar ingredient list (as well as the skin- and coat-improving effects of the food), while dogs find it very tasty. Blue Buffalo Small Breed is also a great value, thanks to its low price point.

CONS

Very few owners who tried Blue Buffalo Small Breed complained about the product. However, some customers were concerned about the inclusion of garlic in the recipe. However, the amount of garlic present in this food is not likely to cause health concerns for most pups.

Ingredients List

Deboned Chicken, Chicken Meal, Whole Ground Barley, Whole Ground Brown Rice, Oatmeal...,

Chicken Fat (naturally preserved with Mixed Tocopherols), Tomato Pomace (natural source of Lycopene), Natural Chicken Flavor, Whole Potatoes, Peas, Menhaden Fish Meal (natural source of Omega 3 Fatty Acids), Whole Carrots, Whole Sweet Potatoes, Blueberries, Cranberries, Flaxseed (natural source of Omega 3 and 6 Fatty Acids), Barley Grass, Dried Parsley, Garlic, Alfalfa Meal, Dried Kelp, Yucca Schidigera Extract, L-Carnitine, L-Lysine, Glucosamine Hydrochloride, Turmeric, Sunflower Oil (natural source of Omega 6 Fatty Acids), Dried Chicory Root, Oil of Rosemary, Beta Carotene, Vitamin A Supplement, Thiamine Mononitrate (Vitamin B1), Riboflavin (Vitamin B2), Niacin (Vitamin B3), d-Calcium Pantothenate (Vitamin B5), Pyridoxine Hydrochloride (Vitamin B6), Biotin (Vitamin B7), Folic Acid (Vitamin B9), Vitamin B12 Supplement, Calcium Ascorbate (source of Vitamin C), Vitamin D3 Supplement, Vitamin E Supplement, Iron Amino Acid Chelate, Zinc Amino Acid Chelate, Manganese Amino Acid Chelate, Copper Amino Acid Chelate, Choline Chloride, Sodium Selenite, Calcium Iodate, Salt, Caramel, Calcium Carbonate, Potassium Chloride, Saccharomyces cerevisiae, Lactobacillus acidophilus, Bacillus subtilis, Enterococcus faecium.

2. Wellness CORE Grain-Free Small Breed Recipe

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Wellness CORE Grain-Free Small Breed Recipe

Wellness CORE Grain-Free Small Breed Recipe

Grain-free recipe featuring meat as first 3 ingredients

Formulated with nutritious, lean protein and fortified with probiotics to ensure proper digestion

About: Wellness CORE products – including their Small Breed Recipe – are essentially grain-free versions of the company’s Complete Health line.

The Small Breed Recipe is specifically formulated to provide the proper caloric intake to satisfy the higher energy needs of small breeds.

Features:

  • Deboned turkey – a nutritious, lean protein – is the first listed ingredient
  • Contains no soy, wheat or corn
  • Full of ingredients rich in omega fatty acids and antioxidants
  • Fortified with probiotics to help ensure proper digestion
  • Made in the USA

PROS

Most owners love Wellness CORE Grain-Free after trying it. Dogs love the taste, while owners love the food’s ability to improve skin and coat health. It features all of the things you’d want in a premium dog food, including whole proteins, nutritious fruits and vegetables, non-grain-based carbohydrates and excellent supplements.

CONS

This is one of the most highly rated foods on the market, so customer complaints are very rare, and typically related to shipping or packaging problem.

Ingredients List

Deboned Turkey, Turkey Meal, Chicken Meal, Potatoes, Peas...,

Dried Ground Potatoes, Chicken Fat (preserved with Mixed Tocopherols), Tomato Pomace, Natural Chicken Flavor, Ground Flaxseed, Salmon Oil, Yucca schidigera Extract, Choline Chloride, Spinach, Vitamin E Supplement, Broccoli, Carrots, Parsley, Apples, Blueberries, Kale, Sweet Potatoes, Taurine, Spearmint, Mixed Tocopherols added to preserve freshness, Zinc Proteinate, Zinc Sulfate, Glucosamine Hydrochloride, Chondroitin Sulfate, Calcium Carbonate, Niacin, Ferrous Sulfate, Iron Proteinate, Beta-Carotene, Vitamin A Supplement, Copper Sulfate, Thiamine Mononitrate, Copper Proteinate, Manganese Proteinate, Manganese Sulfate, d-Calcium Pantothenate, Sodium Selenite, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Riboflavin, Chicory Root Extract, Vitamin D3 Supplement, Biotin, Calcium Iodate, Vitamin B12 Supplement, Folic Acid, Ascorbic Acid (Vitamin C), Dried Lactobacillus plantarum Fermentation Product, Dried Enterococcus faecium Fermentation Product, Dried Lactobacillus casei Fermentation Product, Dried Lactobacillus acidophilus Fermentation Product, Rosemary Extract, Green Tea Extract, Spearmint Extract.

3. Merrick Lil’ Plates Grain-Free Small Breed Recipe

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Merrick Lil’ Plates Grain-Free Small Breed Recipe

Merrick Lil’ Plates Grain-Free Small Breed Recipe

Quality small-breed kibble for all ages

Premium grain-free dog food with no Chinese-sourced ingredients.

About: Merrick Lil’ Plates Small Breed Recipe is a premium, grain-free beef dog food that will provide your pup with a litany of impressive ingredients. Formulated for small breeds in all life stages, you can feed this recipe to your adult, lactating female, or pup as a small breed puppy diet.

Features:

  • Features one of the highest protein contents (38%) of any mainstream dog food
  • Higher fatty acid content than most other dog foods
  • Made in the USA with no Chinese-sourced ingredients
  • Grain- and gluten-free
  • Contains ingredients that are rich in chondroitin and glucosamine to support joint health

PROS

Most dogs find the food very tasty, and owners love the nutritional value of the food. Many owners noted that it improved their dog’s skin and coat condition, as well as improved their energy level. A few owners even stated that it helped reduce their dog’s problems with tear staining.

CONS

The only real problem or downside to Merrick Lil’ Plates Small Breed Recipe is its high cost. However, you have to expect a higher than normal price when you are purchasing a better than average food, made with an incredible assortment of ingredients.

Ingredients List

Deboned Beef, Lamb Meal, Sweet Potatoes, Peas, Potatoes...,

Natural Flavor, Potato Protein, Salmon Meal, Pork Fat (preserved with mixed tocopherols), Pea Protein, Salmon, Inulin (from chicory root), Flaxseed Oil, Apples, Blueberries, Organic Alfalfa, Gelatin, Salmon Oil (source of Omega-3 fatty acids), Salt, Minerals (Zinc Sulfate, Iron Amino Acid Complex, Zinc Amino Acid Complex, Manganese Amino Acid Complex, Copper Amino Acid Complex, Potassium Iodide, Cobalt Amino Acid Complex, Sodium Selenite), Vitamins (Vitamin E Supplement, Vitamin A Acetate, Vitamin B12 Supplement, d-Calcium Pantothenate, Vitamin D3 Supplement, Niacin, Riboflavin Supplement, Biotin, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Folic Acid, Thiamine Mononitrate), Choline Chloride, Yucca schidigera Extract, Dried Bacillus coagulans Fermentation Product, Dried Lactobacillus plantarum Fermentation Product, Dried Lactobacillus casei Fermentation Product, Dried Enterococcus faecium Fermentation Product, Dried Lactobacillus acidophilus Fermentation Product, Rosemary Extract.

4. NUTRO Ultra Small Breed Recipe

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NUTRO ULTRA Adult Small Breed High Protein Natural Dry Dog Food with a Trio of Proteins from Chicken, Lamb and Salmon, 15 lb. Bag

Nutro Ultra Small Breed Recipe

Nutritious, non-GMO dog food

Made with high-quality ingredients and 12 different “superfoods” for complete and balanced nutrition.

About:  NUTRO Ultra Small Breed Recipe is a pretty good option for most Maltese, although it does lack a few of the bells-and-whistles that some others possess. However, it is made without genetically modified organisms, which is an important feature for some owners.

Features:

  • Contains 12 different “superfoods,” including kale, chia and coconut
  • Chicken is the first listed ingredient
  • Small kibble size is perfectly tailored for your pup’s little mouth
  • Made without corn, wheat, soy, artificial flavors or artificial preservatives

PROS

NUTRO is a nutritious food that most dogs love. Although it isn’t a limited-ingredient-diet, it may help solve your dog’s food allergies, as it is made without a lot of common allergens. Additionally, if it is important to provide your dog with a non-GMO food, this is one of the few reasonably priced options available.

CONS

There weren’t many critical reviews of NUTRO Ultra Small Breed Recipe. A few owners reported problems with the packaging or delivery of the food, but this can happen with virtually any dog food. Additionally, a very small number of owners reported that their dog didn’t like the taste.

Ingredients List

Chicken, Chicken Meal, Whole Brown Rice, Brewers Rice, Rice Bran...,

Chicken Fat (preserved with Mixed Tocopherols), Lamb Meal, Salmon Meal, Natural Flavor, Pea Protein, Sunflower Oil (preserved with Mixed Tocopherols), Whole Flaxseed, Dried Plain Beet Pulp, Whole Grain Oatmeal, Potassium Chloride, Choline Chloride, DL-Methionine, Salt, Mixed Tocopherols and Citric Acid (preservatives), Dried Coconut, Whole Chia Seed, Dried Egg Product, Tomato Pomace, Dried Kale, Dried Pumpkin, Dried Spinach, Dried Blueberries, Dried Apples, Dried Carrots, Zinc Sulfate, Niacin Supplement, Biotin, Vitamin E Supplement, Iron Amino Acid Chelate, D-Calcium Pantothenate, Riboflavin Supplement (Vitamin B2), Selenium Yeast, Vitamin B12 Supplement, Copper Amino Acid Chelate, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride (Vitamin B6), Manganese Amino Acid Chelate, Vitamin A Supplement, Thiamine Mononitrate (Vitamin B1), Vitamin D3 Supplement, Folic Acid, Rosemary Extract.

5. Blue Wilderness Small Breed Chicken Recipe

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Blue Wilderness Small Breed Chicken Recipe

Blue Wilderness Small Breed Chicken Recipe

USA-made dog food with real meat as first 3 ingredients

Made of real chicken with no artificial colors and preservatives added.

About: Like virtually every other food made by Blue Buffalo, their Blue Wilderness Small Breed Chicken recipe is a fantastic option for owners who want to give their pup the best nutrition possible. Additionally, this is a grain-free formula, which derives its carbohydrate content from things like peas, tapioca starch and potatoes, rather than wheat or corn.

Features:

  • Deboned chicken is the first listed ingredient
  • Fortified with glucosamine to help protect your pup’s joints
  • Small kibble is perfectly suited for small and toy breeds
  • Formulated without any artificial flavors, artificial colors or artificial preservatives
  • Made in the USA

PROS

Most reviews of Blue Wilderness Small Breed Recipe were very positive. Several owners were very happy that their dog began exhibiting fewer skin and coat problems, and many also began experiencing fewer digestive problems after switching to the product. Additionally, most dogs appear to love the taste of the recipe.

CONS

A handful of owners were frustrated by their dog’s refusal to eat the food, but these types of complaints were rather limited.

Ingredients List

Deboned Chicken, Chicken Meal, Turkey Meal, Peas, Tapioca Starch...,

Chicken Fat (preserved with Mixed Tocopherols and Citric Acid), Dried Egg, Natural Chicken Flavor, Flaxseed (source of Omega 3 and 6 Fatty Acids), Tomato Pomace (source of Lycopene), Potatoes, Alfalfa Meal, Potato Starch, Whole Carrots, Whole Sweet Potatoes, Blueberries, Cranberries, Apples, Blackberries, Pomegranate, Spinach, Pumpkin, Barley Grass, Dried Parsley, Dried Kelp, Taurine, Yucca Schidigera Extract, L-Carnitine, L-Lysine, Glucosamine Hydrochloride, Turmeric, Oil of Rosemary, Beta Carotene, Vitamin A Supplement, Thiamine Mononitrate (Vitamin B1), Riboflavin (Vitamin B2), Niacin (Vitamin B3), d-Calcium Pantothenate (Vitamin B5), Pyridoxine Hydrochloride (Vitamin B6), Biotin (Vitamin B7), Folic Acid (Vitamin B9), Vitamin B12 Supplement, Calcium Ascorbate (source of Vitamin C), Vitamin D3 Supplement, Vitamin E Supplement, Iron Amino Acid Chelate, Choline Chloride, Sodium Selenite, Calcium Iodate, Salt, Caramel, Potassium Chloride, Dried Yeast (source of Saccharomyces cerevisiae), Dried Lactobacillus acidophilus fermentation product, Dried Bacillus subtilis fermentation product, Dried Enterococcus faecium fermentation product.

6. Wellness Complete Health Small Breed Healthy Weight

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Wellness Small Breed Healthy Weight

Wellness Small Breed Healthy Weight

Designed to help small dogs maintain a healthy weight

Packed with lean meats and brown rice, this recipe is formulated to keep small breeds at a healthy body weight.

About: Wellness Small Breed Healthy Weight recipe is a nutritious, high-quality dog food that is specifically designed to help keep small breeds (like your Maltese) at a healthy body weight. Unlike many other weight-control formulas, Wellness Small Breed still has a taste most dogs love.

Features:

  • Real turkey is the first listed ingredient
  • Made with several antioxidant-rich fruits and vegetables, including blueberries, pumpkin and spinach
  • Made in the USA
  • Backed by the manufacturer’s “Wellness Guarantee”
  • Small kibble size to suit your pet’s small mouth and teeth

PROS

Wellness Small Breed received glowing feedback by most small-dog owners who tried it. Most reported that their dog loved the taste and the small kibble size, and that their dog’s coat and skin condition improved after switching to this recipe. Additionally, this recipe (like most other Wellness Complete Health recipes) features a wealth of high-value and nutritious ingredients.

CONS

There were very few complaints about this product, aside from the occasional pup who didn’t like the flavor.

Ingredients List

Deboned Turkey, Chicken Meal, Ground Brown Rice, Salmon Meal, Rye Flour...,

Ground Rice, Oatmeal, Ground Barley, Tomato Pomace, Pea Fiber, Natural Chicken Flavor, Menhaden Fish Meal, Tomatoes, Chicken Fat (preserved with Mixed Tocopherols), Ground Flaxseed, Carrots, Spinach, Potassium Chloride, Sweet Potatoes, Apples, Blueberries, Vitamins [Vitamin E Supplement, Beta-Carotene, Niacin, d-Calcium Pantothenate, Vitamin A Supplement, Riboflavin, Vitamin D-3 Supplement, Vitamin B-12 Supplement, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Thiamine Mononitrate, Ascorbic Acid (Vitamin C), Biotin, Folic Acid], Minerals [Zinc Proteinate, Zinc Sulfate, Iron Proteinate, Ferrous Sulfate, Copper Sulfate, Copper Proteinate, Manganese Proteinate, Manganese Sulfate, Sodium Selenite, Calcium Iodate], Salmon Oil, Choline Chloride, Mixed Tocopherols added to preserve freshness, Taurine, L-Ascorbyl-2-Polyphosphate (a source of Vitamin C), L-Carnitine, Glucosamine Hydrochloride, Chondroitin Sulfate, Chicory Root Extract, Yucca schidigera Extract, Dried Lactobacillus plantarum Fermentation Product, Dried Enterococcus faecium Fermentation Product, Dried Lactobacillus casei Fermentation Product, Dried Lactobacillus acidophilus Fermentation Product, Rosemary Extract.

A Quick Word About Breed-Specific Dog Foods

Some manufacturers produce recipes aimed at various breeds – including Maltese. While these often attract the attention of well-meaning owners, you need to dig deeper before assuming that such foods are ideal for your pup.

Often, the only differences between these products are the labels and packaging – the recipes are frequently identical, or nearly so. Additionally, breed-specific marketing doesn’t necessarily indicate that the food would even satisfy the most basic requirements you’d want in any food.

One popular brand that makes breed-specific formulas doesn’t even contain a whole protein and uses confusing language to obscure the fact that it is a corn-based recipe.

On the flip side, there is nothing wrong with a breed-specific formula; but the differences need to make sense for the breed in question and go beyond the packaging.

best_maltese_foods

We’d love to hear about your experiences with feeding your Maltese. Let us know about your experiences – both good and bad — with various brands and products (particularly if you’ve used one of those we recommend above)!

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Written by

Ben Team

Ben is the senior content editor for K9 of Mine and has spent most of his adult life working as a wildlife educator and animal-care professional. Ben’s had the chance to work with hundreds of different species, but his favorite animals have always been dogs. He currently lives in Atlanta, GA with his spoiled-rotten Rottweiler named J.B. Chances are, she’s currently giving him the eyes and begging to go to the park.

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55 Comments

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Mary Johnson

I feed my maltese the orijen small bites. is this a quality dog food hes 10 mos.old please reply

Reply
Ben Team

Hey, Mary.
We think Orijen is a pretty awesome brand. Just make sure that your vet thinks it’s a good choice for your canine and that your little wagger likes it too!

Reply
GraceMichelle

Hi,
My Maltese is 9weeks old and I’m feeding him Caesar for puppies. This is what the breeder gave me. So far so good.
I hope it’s good brand. I will consider switching to perhaps Blue with my Veterinarian’s advice.

Reply
Ben Team

Hey there, GraceMichelle.
Blue Buffalo is a great choice for many Maltese, but do make sure to discuss it with your vet before making a switch.
In the meantime, check out our article about how to pick a dog food.
Best of luck!

Reply
Linda Miller-deberard

I read the Amazon reviews for the Blue Buffalo products. I’m questioning your research on this article. Are the brand paying you to advertise for them? Several reviews discussed dogs becoming severely ill from the led in Blue Buffalo, including death and a law suit! I’m really disappointed because I thought I had found a good info source in your article.

Reply
Ben Team

Hey there, Linda.

We are not paid directly by Blue Buffalo. You can see how we make money on our About Us page, but here’s the first paragraph:

K9 of Mine generates revenue by participating in several affiliate programs, which provide us with a small commission when we send them traffic that generates a sale. We also have display ads on the site that help generate additional revenue. In some cases, we may also accept a sponsored placement fee from brands who want a certain product reviewed by our team.

As for Blue Buffalo, we do think it is a very good food. I feed it to my own dog (and have for 4+ years) and we recommend it in several articles.

It’s important to look at owner reviews carefully. Often, when a dog gets sick, owners are eager to identify a cause, and dog food is one of the most obvious and convenient targets. But that doesn’t always mean the food was the cause of a dog’s illness. Additionally, myths and misunderstandings spread like wildfire on the web. One person states something as fact, others read these statements, assume they are true, and further spread the info.

The lawsuit illustrates this perfectly. Forgive me for copy & pasting an earlier comment of mine from another article, but we’ve discussed this many times before:

Blue Buffalo does appear to have screwed up with regard to labeling at one point, and they paid dearly for the mistake (in the form of a $32 million class-action lawsuit).

But note that this lawsuit primarily revolved around the inclusion of things like poultry by-products, corn, and other ingredients that — while not ideal — aren’t dangerous for most pups. Blue Buffalo explained that the problem resulted from miscommunications with their supplier.

You can read more about the lawsuit here:
https://topclassactions.com/lawsuit-settlements/lawsuit-news/831324-blue-buffalo-pet-food-ingredients-class-action-settlement-checks-mailed/

Blue Buffalo has initiated a couple of recalls over the last decade or so, but most have only involved a very narrow range of products.

Note that the infamous “lead recall” that many people discuss never actually happened.
https://www.snopes.com/fact-check/does-blue-buffalo-contain-toxic-levels-lead/

What really happened: An owner sued the company over an allegedly high level of lead in a Blue Buffalo food, but the lawsuit was dismissed, and evidence confirming the presence of elevated lead levels has never been presented.

You can read the judge’s ruling here:
https://www.classaction.org/media/blue-buffalo-dismiss.pdf

The last recall the company initiated only related to one specific recipe (Blue Wilderness Rocky Mountain Recipe Red Meat Dinner Wet Food for Adult Dogs). This recall was initiated due to high levels of cow thyroid hormone in the food.

You can read more about this recall on the FDA’s website: https://www.fda.gov/safety/recalls/ucm547335.htm

And finally, I just want to point out that recalls do happen. They’re certainly unfortunate and manufacturers should do everything in their power to avoid the problems that lead to recalls.
But it’s important that we don’t overreact to them.

The strange thing is that people often ignore recalls of human products yet they will completely avoid a dog-related brand’s products for a single recall.
Just take a gander at the FDA’s Recall Page and check out how many products associated with gigantic brands appear.

Since January of 2020, Sabra, Kroger, Publix, Duncan Hines, Dole, Kellogg’s, and Cap’n Crunch have all issued recalls — and that’s just a few of the big brands that have done so in that time frame. But people rarely even think twice about purchasing these products in the future.

Thanks for sharing your thoughts and checking out the site. Best of luck in your search for the perfect food for your pooch!

Reply
Sylvia Magaña Risman

My little girl 3 is struggling with eating. We feed her science diet chicken an lamb I don’t think she likes them. Help

Reply
Ben Team

Hey there, Sylvia.
It’s probably be a good idea to have your vet check your little gal out and make sure she’s not dealing with a health problem.

If you get the all-clear from your vet, you may want to try different foods or start using food toppers to make dinner more appealing.
Best of luck!

Reply
Makeiba

Hi, I am a first time mom to a now six month old female Maltese , I am interested in finding out what are the best foods for her? I have decided to go with Orijent , I am staying away from any Poultry. Occasionally i give her apples ,baked yams, mango, banana and blueberries. Any additional advice is greatly appreciated ? I am also indecisive about whether or not I should spray her? If I do decide to is allowing her to have one litter before doing so recommend?

Reply
Ben Team

Hey there, Makeiba. Congratulations on being a new pooch parent!

Orijen is a great choice, so well done there. Unless your little gal has an allergy to poultry, there’s no reason to avoid it, but there are plenty of proteins available you can choose from if she just likes something else better.
Those occasional treats sound fine (assuming the yams are unseasoned), but watch the quantities — Maltese are little puppers, who don’t require a ton of calories.

As for the question of spaying, we have an article you should check out: The Pros & Cons of Spaying/Neutering a Dog.

Best of luck! Be sure to bookmark our page for future reference!

Reply
Bertie Sirrine

That would be small dog, puppy, until one year old
Then small dog, adult

Reply
Amy

I’m looking for a low calorie, grain free food for my maltese. She is currently overweight and has digestive issues. Ahe needs to be gluten free and seems to be sensitive to chicken. Is there a low calorie grain free food out there without chicken?

Reply
Ben Team

Hey, Amy.
CANIDAE Pure may fit the bill. It’s a salmon-based, grain-free recipe. Just be sure to check out the ingredient list yourself.
Best of luck!

Reply
Anita Hill

I’ve had a female Maltease for 12 yrs. She was absolutely no trouble in training, was picky when it came to what she would eat. I lost her last year. I recently got a male Maltease, he is 6mos.old now, I tried the same technique in training him as I did with her, but he’s somewhat stubborn, at first I got him to use training pads in the house, he used it for teeing, I used the awards system (like with my first Maltease), but he never quite got the stool part right, would not use the pads for that. How can I get him to use the pads again for both eliminating process.? Is he now untrainable.

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Ben Team

Hey, Anita.
Your new pooch is certainly not “untrainable!” Just check out our article about puppy pad training — you’ll find tons of helpful tips there!
Best of luck!

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Tracy Gary

Someone told me that Cesar wer and dry food is good for maltese dog. So i started my dog eating it. I have changed his food 4 times and he’s only 1 years old. I don’t know what to feed him now.

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Little Maltese

Try Nutrisource Grain free chicken and pea small bites.

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valentina andrejevska

I recomand you food for maltese Orijent, its good for fur and stomach.

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Sharon

My 9 week old Maltese eats Stella and Chewy puppy kibble and he totally loves it!

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Rosemarie Hughey

Schatzi, is a Rescue and we believe according to the Vet, looks and mannerism a Maltese, pur or not she definitely fits the finicky eating habits. Today we like it tomorrow we dont, first we refuse and then we begin to eat it / Dog food well, that’s a different story, we began with Blue but because it smelled like wild meat she decided to eat it so we switched now I mix dry and wet from Halo but I keep my fingers crossed. she likes all sorts of odd things, oatmeal, cheese, cottage cheese, salmon/yes/no/chicken giblets great but Mom does not feed everyday / chicken yes fresh roast from the grill but the next day, no thank you. Fruits yes apples mango blueberries but only when I feel like it. In the morning I love the soft boiled egg (but only the yoke) My mom has a really tough time…oh I forgot I like dark bread when its crunchy and cereal without milk and I love real milk and buttermilk but I only get it a little bid but I can smell it from far away….more I do not have to tell….bye now

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Virginia

Great information my baby is 14yrs. old and has gastritis and problems in her joints. Also kidney problems.

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Adelane Milewski

My dog is a Yorkie and Maltese so they say he’s a Morkie I feed him fresh chicken breast fresh beef fresh carrots potatoes is that healthy for him

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Ben Team

Hey, Adelane.
There’s nothing toxic about chicken, carrots, or potatoes, but that doesn’t mean it is good for your pooch either.
We generally discourage the use of homemade dog foods unless you design them in conjunction with your vet or a canine nutritionist — it is very easy to cause nutritional deficiencies with homemade diets.
Instead, we’d encourage you to try one of the recipes mentioned above.
Best of luck!

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Damayra Rivera

I hv a maltese pup for 7 months now she yet to get her period do you know when that comes

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Ben Team

Hey, Damayra. Most dogs get their first period between 6 and 18 months of age, with small breeds typically getting them earlier than larger dogs. You can read more about a dog’s estrus cycle here.

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Luz

My Lola likes Cesar Rotisserie Chicken Flavor & Spring Vegetables Garnish Small Breed Dry Dog Food, is this a good choice. She is 1 year old, she is a very picky eater, I mix it with chicken that I boild just for her. She does not like any kind of treats. Also she loves vegetables like, green beans and broccoli.

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Yolanda Mayfield

Is puppychow dog food a good source for maltese puppies to eat?

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Ben Team

Hey, Yolanda.
Puppy Chow isn’t a very good food, in our opinion.
It uses relatively low-quality proteins, and the carbohydrates it uses aren’t exactly awesome either. We’d strongly recommend switching to one of the recipes discussed above (just be sure to keep your vet in the loop anytime you switch foods).
Best of luck!

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Janet Konover

I gave Chloe BlueBuffalo when I rescued her.. She was fussy. She loves Nutrish chicken and brown rice.

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Monical Ivery

What about simple nourish chicken and brown rice I never hear people talk about this brand dog food

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Mia Palmieri

I have a Maltese shihtzu mix and he is deafening a finicky eater who does love blue wilderness on the bison and also we feed him the Stella and chewy Duck duck goose and he absolutely loves these 2 as a combo

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Julie

Please do some more research about Blue Buffalo. I bought some for my maltese/shih-tzu based on your recommendation. She immediately began having digestive issues. She ate it three times total with severe diarrhea before I did more research online and found horrible reviews abs articles about lawsuits about this food. My dog has been off this food for over a month now and is still not right, having digestive issues, fecal control issues, and a UTI.

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Ben Team

Hey, Julie.

Terribly sorry to hear about your pup’s difficulties. What has your vet said about the issue? Has he or she confirmed that your pup’s health problems are due to the food?

Do note that dogs are all individuals, and some simply aren’t able to tolerate a given dog food. It’s also important to make food switches gradually, as this can help eliminate some intestinal issues. Your pup’s symptoms seem a bit extreme for it to be related to a simple food intolerance, but it’s possible.

Either way – work closely with your vet to ensure the best outcome for your furry one.

Regarding Blue Buffalo: I know there is quite a bit of online discussion about this brand, but a lot of it is overstated.

The company does appear to have screwed up with regard to labeling at one point, and they paid dearly for the mistake (in the form of a $32 million class-action lawsuit).

But note that this lawsuit primarily revolved around the inclusion of things like poultry by-products, corn, and other ingredients that — while not ideal — aren’t dangerous for most pups. Blue Buffalo explained that the problem resulted from miscommunications with their supplier.

You can read more about the lawsuit here:
https://topclassactions.com/lawsuit-settlements/lawsuit-news/831324-blue-buffalo-pet-food-ingredients-class-action-settlement-checks-mailed/

Blue Buffalo has initiated a couple of recalls over the last decade or so, but most have only involved a very narrow range of products.

Note that the infamous “lead recall” that many people discuss never actually happened.
https://www.snopes.com/fact-check/does-blue-buffalo-contain-toxic-levels-lead/

What really happened: An owner sued the company over an allegedly high level of lead in a Blue Buffalo food, but the lawsuit was dismissed, and evidence confirming the presence of elevated lead levels has never been presented.

You can read the judge’s ruling here:
https://www.classaction.org/media/blue-buffalo-dismiss.pdf

The last recall the company initiated only related to one specific recipe (Blue Wilderness Rocky Mountain Recipe Red Meat Dinner Wet Food for Adult Dogs). This recall was initiated due to high levels of cow thyroid hormone in the food.

You can read more about this recall on the FDA’s website: https://www.fda.gov/safety/recalls/ucm547335.htm

All of this is to say that we do research the foods we recommend to the best of our ability. We’re certainly not perfect and we make mistakes from time to time, but based on the available evidence, we remain comfortable recommending Blue Buffalo.

Of course, we’re always willing to consider new evidence and we’ll readily admit when we’re wrong.

And for the record, I feed my beloved pup Blue Buffalo Large Breed Chicken and Rice every day.

Best of luck with your pooch — please keep us updated!

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Bertie Sirrine

If you are going to be a Maltese expert, you should know that the plural of Maltese is Maltese.
And for all owners reading this column, Maltese is always capitalized, as in the country of Malta.
Also, Blue Buffalo is the best food for your Maltese. The small breed variety.

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Ben Team

Hey, Bertie.
You’re 100% correct — sorry for the error.
I’ve fixed that now!

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Patricia crosson

Hi, I adopted Carson, he’s 2 years old never been neutered and doesn’t like any food, but I bought Blue for him and a can of chicken which I put on top and he started eating it. Is canned chicken okay for him?

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Ben

Hey, Patricia.

Canned chicken isn’t dangerous (assuming their are no harmful additives or a ton of salt), but you’ll definitely want to move toward a dog-food-only (or dog-food-mostly) diet as soon as you can.

You obviously need to make sure he gets enough to eat, so I’d just recommend reducing the amount of chicken you give him with each meal. That should help with the transition.

If that doesn’t work over the course of a week or so, I’d reach out to your vet and make sure there’s no underlying problem.

Best of luck with Carson!

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Beverly Adams

What about feeding the toy Maltese hills science diet healthy development. Is this a good food for our baby?

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Monical Ivery

She will be 4 yrs old Feb 28 she loves it chicken and brown rice simple nourish

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Monical Ivery

How come simple nourish is in the list I have a Maltese and I have her on that and she in great health

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Rosa Delgado

I have a maltese we found out that she’s allergic to pretty much everything, the vet told me she can only eat salmon and potatoes I’m having a hard time to find the right food, on top of that I don’t know how to make her to take her allergy pill any ideas?

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Meg Marrs

Hey Rosa – we have an article on salmon dog food as well as dog foods for pups with stomach issues. You’ll certainly find a few foods in those articles that contain salmon and potatoes. As far as getting your dog to take her allergy pill, check out our hacks on getting your dog to take her medicine (one easy one is simply rolling up the pill in peanut butter, liverwurst, or some other tasty morsel your dog can’t resist.

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Margaret Gleason

My sassy is almost 3 yrs old and i can’t get her to eat anything but blue buffalo in the little pink can i have bought halo,blue buffalo.reds.nutro all dried foods i don’t care how much it cost but i can get her to eat dry food even tried mixing it together she won’t touch it help please

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Anette Hamerski

Hello, I’m concerned my Maltese mix rescue dog finally settled on eating Weruva lambolicous and new balance duck and potato for his dry food. Do you have any thoughts on this brand. Thank you in advance

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Cielo Canola

My 6 year old maltese has been sick for almost a year. Many visits to different vets and nobody can find the cause. He has allergies and lost all his beautiful hair and energy. He is now on a 20 mg doses of Prednisone. Heartbreaking. I don’t know what is the best food for him. 🙁

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Meg Marrs

Hey Cielo – you might want to try sampling a very high-quality diet – we have a few suggestions here. These foods are pricey but many promise an improvement in your dog’s appearance. You could at least try a few and see if you notice a change. Good luck, so sorry to hear about your struggles with your pup!

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Doris

My Maltese has only 4 teeth left & has to be on soft food only. The brands you displayed were dry, what about can dog food?

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Doris

I have to feed my Maltese soft food only. She has few. Teeth. Previous owners did not take care of her teeth. She had to have 10 teeth pulled. Shaft foods do you recommend?

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Darlene

My Maltese/Shih Tzu mixed has allergies to food. The only kind that doesn’t affect her allergies as much is Nutro-Lamb Grain Free which most pet stores does not sell any more. She now get allergy shots and I have to order this particular food online through, Amazon or Chewy.com

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Meg Marrs

Hi Darlene – that must be frustrating that you can’t find the Nutro Lamb elsewhere. I’d suggest looking at the ingredient list and trying to find something similar – maybe try experimenting with other lamb grain-free foods. Or, if you don’t mind ordering online, sounds like you have a good system in place!

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Carol arozqueta

I have a Maltese and I always see her biting her paws so I was thinking of changing her food to prescription diet skin/food sensitivities besides the ones you mentioned do you know if this product is good?

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VELLA

My chiuauawa did that and I was told it was a.Allergy to chicken, and now mine seems to be better. Hope this helps.

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Louise W Green

I have a Maltese what brand of blue would like cause he is itching and his doctor said it con.

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Doris

I appreciate all your info on Maltese dogs!

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Stella Gartzen

Really helpfull, I was glad of the advice.

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