Best Dog Food for American Bullies in 2021

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american bully dog

American Bullies, a member of the Pitbull family, are muscular, strong, and deep chested dogs with a strong jaw and fairly large heads. These big dogs require quite a bit of special attention — including regular exercise, and a higher calorie dog food that supplies them with proper energy from proteins and fats. 

While fairly healthy, the American Bully may also need a specialized diet that’s lower in carbohydrates and limited on ingredients. This is due to potential metabolism and digestive issues that are common amongst the breed. 

If you’re looking for the best dog food for your American Bully, you’ve come to the right place. I’ve reviewed 10 of the best options — ranging from dry to fresh, and from puppy to senior. 

My favorite option is Taste of the Wild Southwest Canyon Grain-Free dog food — but all of the formulas on this list are top choices for your American Bully. 

Our Best Dog Food for American Bully

  1. Taste of the Wild Southwest Canyon Grain-Free Dry Dog Food (Best for Adult American Bullies)
  2. ORIJEN Puppy Large Grain-Free Dry Puppy Food (Best for American Bully Puppies)
  3. Wellness CORE Grain-Free Senior Dry Dog Food (Best for Senior American Bullies)
  4. Nulo Freestyle Grain-Free Salmon & Peas Recipe Dry Dog Food (Best for More Active American Bullies)
  5. ACANA Singles Limited Ingredient Diet Grain-Free Dry Dog Food (Best for American Bullies with Food Sensitivities)
  6. Nutro Limited Ingredient Diet Premium Grain-Free Canned Dog Food (Best Wet Food)
  7. Nom Nom Now Dog Food (Best Fresh Dog Food)
  8. Diamond Naturals Extreme Athlete Formula Dry Dog Food (Best Budget Dog Food)
  9. Merrick Grain-Free Healthy Weight Recipe Dry Dog Food (Best for Weight Loss)
  10. Stella & Chewy’s Stella’s Patties Freeze-Dried Raw Dog Food (Best for American Bullies with Diabetes)

10 Best Dog Foods for American Bullies Reviewed 

All of the listed dog foods follow the AAFCO nutrient profile guidelines. Before you commit to switching your dog’s food, please consult with your veterinarian.

Best for Adults

Taste of the Wild Southwest Canyon Grain-Free Dry Adult Dog Food

Taste of the Wild Southwest Canyon Grain-Free
  • First 5 Ingredients: Beef, Peas, Garbanzo Beans, Lamb Meal, Canola Oil
  • Key Feature: High protein dog food made with probiotics and real beef

This dry dog food is the perfect companion for your American Bully, with high protein meats and legumes. Beef and wild boar, along with lamb meal and fish meal, provide 29% Crude Protein to keep your dog both satiated and lean. 

Salmon oil, flaxseed, and canola oil provide omega fatty acids — improving blood flow, reducing inflammation, and protecting the joints. These can also help keep your American Bully’s skin healthy and nourished, preventing itchiness and dry skin. 

On top of that, fruits like blueberries and raspberries provide natural antioxidant and immune support, while dried chicory root helps with prebiotic support for healthy digestion. 

Taste of the Wild also supplements K9 Strain Proprietary Probiotics to boost the immune system, support healthy digestion, and help ease potential allergies. 

This food is made in the US, and the brand is family owned. It’s crafted without grains, corn, wheat, artificial flavors, or artificial colors.


Best for Puppies

ORIJEN Puppy Large Grain-Free Dry Puppy Food

ORIJEN Puppy Large Grain-Free
  • First 5 Ingredients: Chicken, Turkey, Flounder, Whole Mackerel, Chicken Liver
  • Key Feature: Puppy food with high protein and DHA for brain development

American Bully puppies grow fast, easily gaining 50 or more pounds in their first year of life. Because of this, their food needs to support their growth with higher amounts of fats and proteins. 

Puppies also need more vitamins, like calcium and DHA, to support both brain and joint health — since their joints can be weaker during growth. 

Orijen Puppy Large dry dog food is a great option that provides for your American Bully puppy’s needs. The first five ingredients are all real meat, and the recipe also includes cage-free eggs, lentils, and beans for additional protein. 

These provide glucosamine, omega fatty acids, and DHA — all essential for a healthy metabolism and to your dog’s brain function. 

It also includes dried kelp, whole peas, collard greens, and apples for fiber and essential vitamins, like vitamin A and C. These support your dog’s eye health, immune system, and digestion. 

Freeze-dried bits are added for flavor and to entice your puppy to eat. This formula is also grain, gluten, and corn free, and made in the US.


Best for Seniors

Wellness CORE Grain-Free Senior Dry Dog Food

Wellness CORE Grain-Free Senior Deboned Turkey
  • First 5 Ingredients: Deboned Turkey, Chicken Meal, Lentils, Dried Ground Potatoes, Peas
  • Key Feature: High-protein and low calorie dog food for senior American Bullies 

Just because your American Bully ages doesn’t mean their body stops needing higher levels of protein and healthy fats. Wellness Core Senior dog food keeps your dog’s metabolism running smoothly, while also providing the essential nutrients that senior dogs need. 

First, the dog food is made with real turkey and chicken meal as the first two ingredients. These not only provide protein, but fortify the food with glucosamine, chondroitin, and taurine. 

These nutrients are important for lowering blood pressure, improving joint health, providing metabolism support, and aiding in heart health — all vital measures for senior dogs. 

There is also kale, blueberries, and spinach for antioxidants to help in immune support and with reducing the risk of heart disease. And, added probiotics keep your friend’s tummy happy and regular. 

Omega fatty acids also encourage a shiny coat, while protecting aging joints and muscles. Plus, rosemary extract and green tea extract naturally preserve the food while boosting the metabolism. 

This food is lower in calories, helping aging American Bullies keep their lean muscles without negatively affecting your dog’s metabolism. And, it’s free of corn, wheat, and soy.


Best for Active Dogs

Nulo Freestyle Grain-Free Salmon & Peas Recipe Dry Dog Food

Nulo Freestyle Grain-Free Salmon & Peas
  • First 5 Ingredients: Deboned Salmon, Turkey Meal, Menhaden Fish Meal, Whole Peas, Sweet Potato
  • Key Feature: High protein dog food for highly active American Bullies 

Nulo Freestyle Salmon & Peas dog food is high in amino acids and has 30% Crude Protein to fuel lean muscles. And, this food is naturally low-glycemic, helping to reduce blood sugar levels, lower chances of diabetes, and keep a healthy metabolism. 

Not only does this dog food include salmon, turkey meal, and eggs, but it also includes high protein vegetables and legumes like peas, chickpeas, and lentils. Lamb provides vitamin B6 and niacin to boost energy production, keeping your American Bully active all day. 

This dog food is also grain-free but offers highly digestible carbs with sweet potatoes and carrots. Calcium and phosphorus are also supplemented — helping your dog maintain strong bones and joints. 

Blueberries, apples, and tomatoes are added to provide essential vitamins and minerals that your American Bully needs. They provide vitamin C for immune support, vitamin E for healthy skin and coat, and vitamin A for healthy eye function.


Best for Food Sensitivitieses

ACANA Singles Limited Ingredient Diet Grain-Free Dry Dog Food

ACANA Singles Beef Pumpkin Grain Free
  • First 5 Ingredients: Deboned Beef, Beef Meal, Beef Liver, Sweet Potato, Whole Chickpeas
  • Key Feature: Limited ingredient and grain free dog food for American Bullies with sensitivities

If your dog has food sensitivities or allergies, there are quite a few foods that they may not be able to eat. Common allergens for American Bullies include chicken and soy. 

With ACANA Limited Ingredient Diet Beef & Pumpkin dog food, you can feed your dog a high-protein diet without the stress and hassle. 

This formula starts with real beef sourced from select farmers and ranchers. This is the only meat added to the dog food, and provides 31% Crude Protein, iron, and glucosamine. These nutrients help support your dog’s lean muscles, and also help to protect their joints. 

Whole pumpkin and sweet potatoes are added for digestion and overall gut health. These ingredients also offer essential vitamins and minerals like vitamin A and vitamin C for immune support. 

To add to that, taurine is supplemented to maintain proper hydration, support your dog’s nervous system, and regulate the body to absorb more nutrients like calcium. 

This food is free from peas, corn, chicken, eggs, and plant-protein isolates. It’s also made in the US.


Best Wet Food

Nutro Limited Ingredient Diet Premium Grain-Free Canned Dog Food

Nutro Limited Ingredient Diet Premium Loaf Lamb & Potato
  • First 5 Ingredients: Lamb, Water, Whole Potatoes, Lamb Liver, Potato Protein
  • Key Feature: Limited ingredient and chicken free wet food 

Need a wet food that has simple and wholesome ingredients, but also provides the calories that your American Bully needs? Then Nutro Limited Ingredient Grain-Free dog food is exactly what you’re searching for. 

And bonus points — it’s also a great choice for dogs with allergies and sensitivities that don’t like dry food. You can use this formula as their entire meal, or mix it in with their kibble to encourage eating. 

Lamb is the only protein source added to this wet food, offering plenty of protein without triggering sensitivities or digestive problems. It also offers essential vitamins like selenium, zinc, and vitamin B12. 

These boost energy, support the heart and immune system, and keep your dog’s metabolism on the right track. 

This formula is free of grains, corn, gluten, and soy. Instead, it features potatoes as a highly digestible carbohydrate. It’s also made without artificial colors, flavors, or preservatives. 

It’s produced in Nutro’s own facilities, and is third party tested to ensure both safety and high quality dog food.


Best Fresh Food

Nom Nom Now Pork Potluck Recipe

nom nom pork recipe
  • First 5 Ingredients: Ground pork, Russet Potatoes, Green Beans, Squash, Kale
  • Key Feature: Fresh and human grade customized dog food 

Fresh dog food offers a way for you to customize your dog’s meals, provide them with the proper nutrients, and offer them an enjoyable experience. If you have more room in your budget, fresh food is a great option for your American Bully.  

Nom Nom offers human grade dog food with ingredients like pork, mushrooms, and potatoes for a more affordable fresh food option. 

And, the company offers your dog a customized diet made just for them. 

To get started, you’ll take a quiz and answer a few questions about your American Bully. These will revolve around their weight, body type, what they like and don’t like, and possible allergens. 

Once the quiz is complete, Nom Nom Now will create a customized diet to fit the caloric, protein, and fat needs of your dog. Even though the pork recipe is popular, you can choose other formulas as well — including beef, turkey, and chicken. You can also mix it up and choose all four. 

Once you’ve chosen the recipes you want to feed your American Bully, Nom Nom Now will ship the food fresh. And no need to guess how much you’re supposed to feed your pup — everything is individually portioned to fit their daily needs. 

Each of the recipes are formulated and evaluated by the company’s veterinary nutrition experts, PhD nutritionists, and Board Certified Veterinary Nutritionists.


Best Budget Food

Diamond Naturals Extreme Athlete Formula Dry Dog Food

Diamond Naturals Extreme Athlete Formula
  • First 5 Ingredients: Chicken Meal, Chicken, Ground White Rice, Chicken Fat, Cracked Pearled Barley
  • Key Feature: High protein and budget friendly dog food  

Superfoods, real meat, and fresh vegetables and fruits can easily add up in cost. But it is possible to find a budget friendly dog food that provides a high protein and wholesome diet. 

Diamond Naturals Extreme Athlete dog food boasts 32% Crude Protein, and includes real cage-free chicken, eggs, and chicken fat. These ingredients help fuel the muscles of highly active dogs like your American Bully. 

Omega fatty acids from the chicken and flaxseed oil help maintain healthy skin and coats, while protecting the joints and supporting a healthy heart. 

Blueberries, oranges, kelp, and papaya offer antioxidants for an immune system boost, and include other essential vitamins and minerals. Vitamin C, vitamin A, and fiber also help with digestion, with maintaining healthy bones and teeth, and with brain health

This dog food is made in the US by a family-owned company and with highly vetted domestic and global food sources. It’s made without corn, wheat, artificial flavors, and artificial colors, and is also free of soy and peas.


Best for Weight Loss

Merrick Grain-Free Healthy Weight Recipe Dry Dog Food

Merrick Grain-Free Healthy Weight Adult
  • First 5 Ingredients: Deboned Beef, Chicken Meal, Sweet Potatoes, Potatoes, Turkey Meal
  • Key Feature: Weight Loss 

While American Bullies tend to be naturally stocky and muscular, it is possible for them to gain weight. In doing so, they are prone to health issues like diabetes, high blood pressure, respiration issues, and joint problems. 

If you need to help your furry friend maintain their healthy weight, feed them Merrick Healthy Weight dog food. It still offers enough protein to maintain their muscles, but with lower fat content and calories to help them shed that excess weight. 

Deboned beef is the very first ingredient, promoting healthy muscle tissue and providing energy. Chicken and turkey meals round out the proteins, offering 32% Crude Protein for enough muscle and joint support. 

This dog food is also high in fiber, helping with digestion and keeping your dog’s metabolism running properly. Omega fatty acids from chicken fat and flaxseed help lubricate joints, boost heart health, and keep high blood pressure at bay. 

Glucosamine and chondroitin are also added to aid in hip and joint function. And apples, blueberries, and peas offer vitamins and antioxidants for immune support. 

This food is cooked in Merrick’s Hereford, TX kitchen. It’s made without corn, wheat, soy, gluten, and artificial preservatives.


Best for Diabetes

Stella & Chewy’s Stella’s Patties Freeze-Dried Raw Dog Food

Stella & Chewy's Beef Dinner Patties Freeze-Dried Raw
  • First 5 Ingredients: Beef, Beef Liver, Beef Kidney, Beef Heart, Beef Tripe
  • Key Feature: Low carb dog food for American Bullies with diabetes

If your American Bully is obese and has been diagnosed with diabetes, your veternarian may recommend a lower carb and lower calorie diet. 

Stella & Chewy’s Super Beef Patties dog food fits those needs while offering enough protein and fat to sustain healthy weight loss and heart health. 

This dog food’s first five ingredients are all from one animal protein source — beef — that is both raw and sustainably sourced. Plus, it’s grass-fed and raised without hormones or antibiotics. 

100% certified-organic fruits and vegetables, like beets and broccoli, are added as well, to supplement needed vitamins and minerals. Plus, the formula is enhanced with probiotics to help with healthy digestion and metabolism support. 

Although this recipe is considered raw, it comes in the convenience of freeze dried patties. You can serve it as is, or rehydrate with water if you want to offer your dog more hydration. But do not cook, heat, or microwave the food — and if you do rehydrate it, do so with lukewarm water before feeding.

The food is made without grains, gluten, fillers, artificial preservatives, and artificial colorings. It’s made in the US with ingredients responsibly sourced from reputable suppliers.


american bully walking

How to Choose Food for Your American Bully

Because of their size and build, American Bullies need a diet higher in protein with moderate and healthy fats, enough fiber, and even a few special vitamins. Here’s what to know before choosing your American Bully’s new food. 

Higher Protein for Muscle Retention

American Bullies are stocky and need to stay that way. If their muscles aren’t properly fed, they can deteriorate, which can then cause health issues. 

The quality and quantity of the protein you feed your American Bully can make all the difference.  

When looking for dog food for your American Bully, focus on a higher protein percentage. At least 25% is ideal. Also, try to purchase a food that includes animal protein from real meat as the first ingredient — like chicken, beef, fish, or lamb. While meat meals aren’t terrible, they are slightly lower in protein and essential vitamins and nutrients. 

Other great protein sources include pea protein, beans (like chickpeas), and livers. These are usually added to dog food in addition to meat, and help bulk up the protein content. 

Healthy Fats

While an American Bully doesn’t need a high fat diet to maintain their build, they will need a source of healthy fats. These include salmon oils, flaxseed oil, coconut, eggs, and even nuts. 

Providing these healthy fats can help your dog absorb other vitamins and minerals like vitamins D, K, and A. Healthy fats also help lower blood pressure, provide support to joints and muscles, and keep your dog’s coat and skin shiny and healthy. 

Digestible Carbohydrates

While carbohydrates provide energy and regulate digestion, it’s important to focus on the proper carbohydrates when you have an American Bully. 

Due to potential gastrointestinal issues, your American Bully may need to be on a grain-free and gluten-free diet. And, lowering carbohydrates can help decrease gas and “smelliness” as well. 

Focus on easily digestible and grain-free carbs like oats, sweet potatoes, potatoes, peas, beans, and legumes. 

Fiber

Fiber is especially important for dogs that may suffer from digestive issues like American Bullies do. While there isn’t a specific amount of fiber that your American Bully needs, the carbohydrates mentioned above can offer plenty of fiber. 

Dog foods that supplement prebiotics and probiotics can also be beneficial with keeping your dog’s tummy happy. 

Vitamins and Minerals

While most dog foods already supplement and provide the correct percentages of vitamins and minerals, there are a few that you should focus on providing your American Bully. 

The most important vitamins are calcium and vitamin D. Without these two supplements (in proper dosages), your American Bully may suffer from joint issues. 

Due to their size and the way their weight is proportioned, they tend to put more strain on their front legs. Without calcium or vitamin D, the joints become brittle and less flexible, which can then cause pain and a deterioration of muscles. 

To avoid this, consult with your veterinarian about the possibility of providing calcium supplements. 

Ingredients to Avoid

As humans, we already read our nutrition labels to protect ourselves from ingredients we don’t want in our bodies. We also need to do the same for our dogs. 

Sometimes, commercial brand dog food adds certain ingredients in order to keep the food affordable, or to keep the food fresh. But these ingredients aren’t always completely safe, and may be detrimental to your dog’s health. In worst case scenarios, they cause heart disease, sensitivities, digestive issues, and even death. 

For your dog, avoid ingredients like BHA, BHT, and Ethoxyquin, which are artificial preservatives. Additives and fillers like Melamine, Propylene Glycol, food dyes, and MSG should be avoided as well. 

Other ingredients, like meat meals, corn, soy, and wheat, should be avoided when possible, but don’t have to be completely eliminated. However, they are known to cause adverse reactions for some dogs, so keep a close eye on your furry friend.

big american bully dog

Common American Bully Health Issues 

Like most large breeds, American Bullies do tend to have a few health issues involving their size. However, many of these problems can be prevented (or at least managed) with proper diet and exercise. 

Here are some common health issues that your American Bully may experience. 

Obesity

Like their family member the Pitbull, American Bullies can suffer from obesity if not fed a complete and balanced diet. The average weight for an adult American Bully is around 130 pounds, so anything over this is considered over weight. 

Obesity can cause other health issues as well, including diabetes, hip dysplasia, heart problems, and more. The best thing to do is keep your American Bully on a proper diet with healthy fats and proteins, and serve correct portion sizes. 

Diabetes Mellitus

Just like humans, American Bullies can suffer from diabetes. Diabetes mellitus is a chronic disease that happens when the body becomes intolerant to glucose due to insulin deficiency. Depending on the type of diabetes — type I or type II — this can become a lifelong disease. 

Type I diabetes is usually caused by genetics, and will need to be managed with medication. Type II diabetes is related to diet, and can typically be managed and even reversed with a healthier lifestyle, including weight loss. 

If your American Bully has diabetes, this can affect much more than just their weight. Suffering from diabetes long term can cause kidney and liver damage, heart issues, and — in the worst cases — death. So managing their diet is extremely important. 

While your veterinarian will be able to help with the correct dosage of medication and with advising a proper diet, you’ll usually want to buy dog food that is lower carb, moderate protein, and moderate fat. Providing nutrients like omega fatty acids, glucosamine, and magnesium can be also beneficial.  

Gastroenteritis

Gastroenteritis is one of the most common digestive issues that American Bullies suffer from, and is inflammation or irritation of the stomach and intestines. There can be multiple causes for gastroenteritis — including viruses, cancer, or even allergies. Plus, since American Bullies tend to eat everything in sight, consistent gastroenteritis can become an issue. 

Of course, it’s important to consult with a vet immediately if your dog is vomiting, has diarrhea for more than 24 hours, is suddenly lethargic, or is experiencing bloat. These can all be signs of gastroenteritis, and can lead to more serious health issues like severe dehydration or ileus. 

While gastroenteritis may be acute and caused by a virus, chronic conditions need to be managed with the proper limited ingredient diet, and without ingredients like soy, wheat, and corn. These are usually the biggest inflammation causing ingredients for dogs. 

Food Allergies

Unlike some other breeds, American Bullies aren’t typically prone to allergies from food or their environment. However, even though it’s not common, they can still have sensitivities or allergies

The most common food allergies for American Bullies that have them are from protein chains found in chicken, pork, and soy. If you notice that your American Bully has an itchy coat or skin, red rimmed or watery eyes after eating, coughing, vomiting, or diarrhea, they may be allergic to their food. Their veterinarian will be able to confirm. 

It is possible to manage and avoid food allergies. Many dog foods have limited ingredient diets or diets for dogs with allergies. These will eliminate common allergens like chicken for dogs that can’t eat them. 

Our Verdict

Your American Bully needs a high protein diet to support their muscles and active lifestyle, without the fillers and ingredients that can affect their sensitivities. 

Taste of the Wild Southwest Canyon dog food provides them with all the proper amounts of proteins, fats, and vitamins they need to support their health and keep them energetic all day. 

And, it’s flavorful enough to entice them to eat all of their food to support their caloric needs. 

You don’t have to skimp on nutrition in order to provide your American Bully with delicious dog food. If Taste of the Wild doesn’t work for you and your furry best friend, any of the dog foods on this list will keep them happy and satisfied. 

FAQ About American Bully Food

Curious and need answers about your American Bully? Here are some common questions. 

Should I feed my American Bully wet or dry dog food?

It doesn’t matter! However, dry food usually has more calories, fat, and protein per serving size than wet food. So, since your American Bully needs quite a bit of food, dry food may be more economical and also easier to feed. 

However, some picky dogs tend to avoid dry food. Wet food may be a better option if you find that your American Bully doesn’t like eating their food or is underweight. You can also mix the two — as a special treat, top your dog’s dry food with a spoonful or two of wet food. 

Is a grain-free diet good for American Bully?

Grain-free dog food isn’t necessary for most dogs. In fact, many dogs can do well on a diet with whole grains, as long as the grains are easily digestible.

However, it can be helpful if your dog suffers from gastrointestinal issues or needs a limited ingredient diet. 

Should I feed my Bully a raw diet?

There are a few studies that show a raw food diet may be beneficial, but it’s not necessary. If you have the budget and time for it, a raw diet can be a great option. 

Before you switch, be sure to consult with your veterinarian on the proper portions, nutrients, and calories that your dog will need. 

How do I make my American Bully muscular?

Luckily, American Bullies are naturally lean and muscular dogs. However, if you’re looking to bulk your dog up a bit, there are two main things to focus on — diet and exercise. 

Walking, running, and agility training is helpful. And a diet higher in protein and fat can help provide the energy and muscle building acids your American Bully needs to gain bulk. 

Is an American Bully the same breed as a Pitbull?

The two breeds are very similar, but no, an American Bully is not the same breed as a Pitbull. However, the American Bully is part of the Pitbull family — with similar family members being the American Bulldog, English Bulldog, and the Old English Bulldog. 

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AUTHOR
Kim Studdard is a freelance writer for many websites in the pet universe. When she isn't spending time with her family and pets, or saying "Look a dog" everytime she sees one, you'll find her reading a book or traveling the U.S.

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