Best Dog Food for Belgian Malinois in 2022

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belgian malinois dog

This is our review of the best dog food for Belgian Malinois in 2022.

The Belgian Malinois is a working and herding breed that thrives with regular exercise. These dogs are squarely built and well-muscled but aren’t considered bulky.

Instead, they have lean muscles to perform obedience training and make excellent guard dogs. 

However, even though they are a medium-sized breed, they need food full of protein and healthy fats. 

Ziwi Peak Grain-Free dog food is my top choice for these active dogs.

It offers a whopping 35% protein for muscle maintenance and provides a raw diet option for a pup that thrives on real meats. 

And this kids, is how I met your mother.

There are many other formulas if this one doesn’t suit your canine. From a puppy recipe for steady growth to food made specifically for eye support, you’ll be able to meet any of your Belgian Malinois nutrition needs.

Best Budget Option
American Journey Salmon & Sweet Potato Grain-Free
American Journey Grain-Free Dry Food

Real salmon is the #1 ingredient

Good for All Life Stages

Free of corn, wheat and soy


Best Overall
Ziwi Peak Lamb Grain-Free Air-Dried
Ziwi Peak Grain-Free Air-Dried Food

96% meat, organs, bone and New Zealand green mussels

WholePrey nutrition

Air-dried recipe


Best Wet Food Option
Purina Beyond Beef Wet
Purina Beyond Ground Entrée Canned

Texas beef is the #1 ingredient

Natural prebiotic fiber

No poultry-by-product meal


Our Top Picks for Belgian Malinois

10 Best Dog Foods for Belgian Malinois Reviewed 

The dog food formulas listed below follow the AAFCO nutrient profile guidelines. If you plan on switching your dog’s food, consult your veterinarian for the best practices and how to transition them slowly. 


Best Overall

1 Ziwi Peak Grain-Free Air-Dried Dog Food

Ziwi Peak Lamb Grain-Free Air-Dried
Our Rating:
  • First 5 Ingredients: Lamb, Lamb Heart, Lamb Tripe, Lamb Liver, Lamb Kidney
  • Guaranteed Analysis: 35% Crude Protein, 33% Crude Fat, 2% Crude Fiber, 14% Moisture
  • Caloric Content: 318 kcal/scoop
  • Special Diet: Limited Ingredient Diet, No Corn, No Wheat, No Soy, Grain-Free, Pea-Free, Non-GMO
  • Life Stage: All Life Stages
  • Key Feature: Non-GMO raw dog food that’s air-dried for convenience

This high-fat, high-protein, high-quality dog food helps Belgian Malinois grow and maintain lean muscle mass. And it contains vitamin E and glucosamine for joint health. 

It is lower in calories at 318 kcal/cup, so it’s best used in addition to kibble or as a special meal unless your dog needs lower calories. 

It provides real lamb, lamb heart, and New Zealand green mussels, which contain 35% Crude Protein. This is considered a raw recipe but goes through a twin-stage air-drying process to preserve the ingredients naturally.

This is a grain-free formula. Instead, it contains dried kelp and chicory for prebiotic fiber, which aids in digestive health. And kelp provides dental care — scrubbing plaque from your dog’s teeth as they chew. 

Dog owners love that this food only contains real animal proteins and is free of grains for sensitive pups. But many note that the food is costly and can cause stinky breath because of the meat. 

We like:

Moisture content for easy chewing

High-protein for muscle maintenance

Grain-free to prevent allergic reactions

Contains vitamin E for joint health

We don’t like:

Expensive

Causes stinky breath


Best Budget Food

2 American Journey Grain-Free Dry Dog Food

American Journey Salmon & Sweet Potato Grain-Free
Our Rating:
  • First 5 Ingredients: Deboned Salmon, Chicken Meal, Turkey Meal, Peas, Sweet Potatoes
  • Guaranteed Analysis: 33% Crude Protein, 14% Crude Fat, 5% Crude Fiber, 10% Moisture
  • Caloric Content: 390kcal/cup
  • Special Diet: Grain-Free, No Corn, No Wheat, No Soy
  • Life Stage: All Life Stages
  • Key Feature: Grain-free and budget-friendly dry dog food with real animal proteins

This affordable dog food is perfect for budget-conscious owners with larger breeds like Belgian Malinois. And it’s free of common allergens like beef, wheat, and corn.

Its main proteins are deboned salmon and chicken meal, offering a whopping 32% Crude Protein. And with 390 kcal/cup, it requires fewer cups to fill up your pup. 

Instead of grains, peas, sweet potatoes, and chickpeas provide easy-to-digest carbohydrates. But they still offer 5% Crude Fiber, keeping your canine’s digestive tract healthy and clear. Plus, the extra fiber absorbs excess water, keeping potential diarrhea at bay. 

This formula also contains blueberries and dried kelp for vitamin C and antioxidants — aiding in a robust immune system. 

Salmon oil and flaxseeds offer omega fatty acids, including long-chain DHA. This helps support cognitive function and coat health. 

Pet owners love this grain-free recipe and appreciate the bigger bag size to feed their larger dogs. But some note that it tends to be dry and crunchy. 

We like:

High in vitamin C for immune system support

Contains DHA for brain health

Large bag size for bigger dogs/multiple dogs

Affordable

We don’t like:

Can be stale


Best Wet Food

3 Purina Beyond Ground Entrée Grain-Free Canned Dog Food

Purina Beyond Beef Wet
Our Rating:
  • First 5 Ingredients: Beef, Beef Broth, Chicken, Liver, Potatoes
  • Guaranteed Analysis: 8% Crude Protein, 6% Crude Fat, 1.5% Crude Fiber, 78% Moisture
  • Caloric Content: 450 kcal/can
  • Food Texture: Pate
  • Special Diet: Grain-Free, Sensitive Digestion
  • Life Stage: Adult
  • Key Feature: High-protein and grain-free wet food for picky eaters and sensitive tummies

While wet food can be costly if fed exclusively to large dogs, this option is perfect for a topper or to offer moisture to older dogs or those with chewing issues.  

It contains 8% Crude Protein, making it 32% when measured as dry matter. The high-protein content comes from real beef and chicken. It also has beef liver, providing extra iron and zinc, aiding energy and immune support. 

This is also a high-fat diet, delivering 24% Crude Fat when measured as dry matter. So it may not be the best for dogs who need to lose or maintain weight. But if your dog needs more fat, it offers beef bone broth and vitamin E for joint and bone health. 

High moisture content makes this an excellent option for older dogs who don’t drink enough water or those with few or no teeth

Pet parents say this canned food makes kibble easier to eat and tastier for picky dogs. But some hate the pate style of it and say it makes mealtime messy. 

We like:

Contains vitamin E for joint and coat health

Limited-ingredient diet for sensitive stomachs

High-protein for muscle maintenance

High-calorie for energy support

We don’t like:

Messy

Expensive


Best for Puppies

4 Instinct Raw Boost Large Breed Puppy Grain-Free Dry Dog Food

Instinct Raw Boost Large Breed Puppy Grain Free Chicken
Our Rating:
  • First 5 Ingredients: Chicken, Chicken Meal, Peas, Egg Product, Tapioca
  • Guaranteed Analysis: 33.5% Crude Protein, 18.5% Crude Fat, 5% Crude Fiber, 9% Moisture
  • Caloric Content: 485 kcal/cup
  • Special Diet: Grain-Free, Gluten Free, No Corn, No Wheat, No Soy, Raw, Natural
  • Life Stage: Puppy
  • Key Feature: High-calorie and high-fat puppy food made for large breeds

This formula is high in protein and calories for growing Belgian Malinois puppies 8 weeks to 14 months old. It also includes freeze-dried raw bits to entice picky puppies to eat. 

It offers 33.5% Crude Protein and 18.5% Crude Fat from chicken, chicken meal, and chicken fat. These also provide glucosamine and chondroitin for flexibility and to protect your growing pup’s cartilage. 

This formula is grain-free. But most veterinarians recommend grains for growing puppies — unless they have allergies. So it may not be the best option if your vet wants your pup to eat them. But it still offers fiber and vitamins A and C from blueberries, peas, and pumpkin seeds

This recipe also provides DHA from salmon oil for brain health and cognitive function — which is essential for pups who have weaned off their mother’s milk. 

Puppy parents love the ingredients in this food and say that their pup has shiny fur and perfect teeth. But some note that it can cause stinky farts and gas in some puppies. 

We like:

Contains DHA for brain health

Offers raw bits for picky pups

High-protein for muscle growth

High-calorie for medium and large pups

We don’t like:

Can cause gas

Grain-free


Best for Seniors

5 Merrick Grain-Free Senior Dry Dog Food

Merrick Grain-Free Senior Chicken
Our Rating:
  • First 5 Ingredients: Deboned Chicken, Chicken Meal, Sweet Potatoes, Potatoes, Turkey Meal
  • Guaranteed Analysis: 30% Crude Protein, 12% Crude Fat, 3.5% Crude Fiber, 11% Moisture
  • Caloric Content: 370 kcal/cup
  • Special Diet: Grain-Free, No Corn, No Wheat, No Soy, Gluten-Free
  • Life Stage: Senior
  • Key Feature: High-protein dry dog food with glucosamine for senior Belgian Malinois

This dog food offers a high-protein but low-fat diet for aging dogs to control weight and protect muscles and joints. 

While it offers 12% Crude Fat, which is lower than average, it’s full of healthy fats like chicken fat and salmon oil. These keep joints limber, boost brain function, and aid healthy skin with a shiny coat. 

But, the lower fat content also keeps your dog from putting on too much weight during their senior years. 

Deboned chicken and chicken meal offer 30% Crude Protein, which is perfect for seniors. This keeps their muscle mass while protecting cartilage to keep arthritis at bay. And they provide l-carnitine, which aids in heart health and muscle function.

Dog parents love that this food contains probiotics for gut support. But some note that their picky seniors needed a topping on the kibble to eat it. 

We like:

Contains l-carnitine for cartilage health

Kibble is easy to eat for dogs without teeth

Low in fat to avoid weight gain

Contains probiotics for gut health

We don’t like:

Picky dogs find it bland


Best for Active Dogs

6 Blue Buffalo Life Protection Formula Adult Dry Dog Food

Blue Buffalo Life Protection Formula Adult Chicken & Brown Rice
Our Rating:
  • First 5 Ingredients: Deboned Chicken, Chicken Meal, Brown Rice, Barley, Oatmeal
  • Guaranteed Analysis: 24% Crude Protein, 14% Crude Fat, 5% Crude Fiber, 10% Moisture
  • Caloric Content: 377 kcal/cup
  • Special Diet: No Corn, No Wheat, No Soy, With Grain
  • Life Stage: Adult
  • Key Feature: High-protein dry kibble with calcium for strong bones 

This high-fiber and high-protein dry dog food is excellent for working or active Belgian Malinois. And it contains taurine, glucosamine, and chondroitin to keep the heart, joints, and muscles strong. 

It starts with real deboned chicken. This offers 24% Crude Protein. Flaxseed and chicken fat provide omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, offering anti-inflammatory properties to aid in recovery from strenuous activities. 

This is a grain-inclusive formula containing brown rice, barley, and oatmeal. These provide 5% crude fiber and prebiotics for a healthy digestive system. They provide essential nutrients like vitamin A, C, and iron — aiding the eye, immune system, and energy support. 

This dog food is free of corn, wheat, soy, and chicken by-product meals. It’s a great choice for dogs who need grains but need to avoid common allergens. 

Dog moms and dads say their dog has more energy and a shinier coat since switching to this food. But some note that the higher-sodium content may not be the best for dogs with liver or kidney problems. 

We like:

High-protein for muscle mass

Grain-inclusive recipe for healthy digestion

Contains antioxidants for a healthy immune system

Larger kibble size to avoid overeating

We don’t like:

High in sodium

Costly


Best for Food Sensitivities

7 Zignature Lamb Limited Ingredient Formula Grain-Free Dry Dog Food

Zignature Lamb LID Lamb
Our Rating:
  • First 5 Ingredients: Lamb, Lamb Meal, Chickpeas, Peas, Sunflower Oil
  • Guaranteed Analysis: 28% Crude Protein, 15% Crude Fat, 4% Crude Fiber, 10% Moisture
  • Caloric Content: 393 kcal/cup
  • Special Diet: Grain-Free, No Corn, No Wheat, No Soy, Low Glycemic, Limited Ingredient Diet, Gluten-Free, Chicken-Free
  • Life Stage: Puppy, Adult
  • Key Feature: Limited ingredient dry dog food for Belgian Malinois with food sensitivities

This high-quality dog food contains eight simple ingredients (not including vitamins) for dogs who have severe food allergies and intolerances. 

It’s free of corn, wheat, soy, dairy, beef, and chicken. Instead, it offers a single protein source — lamb and lamb meal. This is a high-protein diet and provides 28% Crude Protein. It also contains taurine for heart and muscle health. 

Instead of grains, this recipe offers low-glycemic legumes like chickpeas. These provide fiber for digestive health and contain vitamin A and selenium for eye health and metabolic support.  

This is a lower-calorie diet, offering 393 kcal/cup. For adult Belgian Malinois, this would require more than 4 cups daily, making it less affordable over time. But for dogs with sensitivities, it’s worth it for many pet parents. 

Belgian Malinois owners say this is the only food that hasn’t caused an allergic reaction in their dog. But some note that now their dog drinks a lot more water, which means more time outside. 

We like:

Limited-ingredient diet

Free of chicken and beef for sensitive dogs

High-protein for active dogs

Moderate-fat for coat health

We don’t like:

Can make dogs thirsty


Best Fresh Food

8 My Ollie Lamb Recipe

ollie lamb with cranberries
Our Rating:
  • First 5 Ingredients: Lamb, Butternut Squash, Lamb Liver, Kale, Rice
  • Guaranteed Analysis: 10% Crude Protein, 7% Crude Fat, 2% Crude Fiber, 74% Moisture
  • Caloric Content: 1804 kcal/kg
  • Life Stage: All Life Stages
  • Key Feature: Fresh dog food with single-source protein and human-grade ingredients
Get 50% OFF your first Ollie order!

Try Ollie if you want customized premium dog food to fit your dog’s needs. To get started, you’ll complete a questionnaire about your dog’s weight, height, potential allergies, and breed. From there, they will recommend the best diet for your pup. 

While this brand offers multiple recipes, their lamb formula provides protein and healthy fats, even for dogs with protein allergies. It still offers 44% Crude Protein when measured on a dry matter basis. 

This recipe also contains butternut squash, kale, and cranberries. These offer vitamins A and C for immune health, and cranberries are known to protect urinary health

This food doesn’t have a specified calorie count because it will depend on your dog’s nutritional needs. But, it does have high-fat and high-fiber content, offering 32% Crude Fat and 8% Crude Fiber, respectively. 

Pet parents love that this food contains human-grade ingredients and is fresh with real ingredients. But many hate that they have a subscription and that shipping times can be extended. 

We like:

High-protein for energy

Human-grade ingredients for health-conscious owners

Can remove allergens from food

High fiber for digestive health

We don’t like:

Requires a subscription

Shipping times can be long


Best for Weight Loss

9 Solid Gold Fit & Fabulous Weight Control Grain-Free Dry Dog Food

Solid Gold Fit & Fabulous Weight Control Grain-Free Chicken
Our Rating:
  • First 5 Ingredients: Chicken, Chicken Meal, Sweet Potatoes, Pea Fiber, Potatoes
  • Guaranteed Analysis: 26% Crude Protein, 6.5% Crude Fat, 10% Crude Fiber, 10% Moisture
  • Caloric Content: 320 kcal/cup
  • Special Diet: Gluten-Free, Grain-Free, Weight Control, No Corn, No Wheat, No Soy
  • Life Stage: Adult
  • Key Feature: Low-fat dry dog food with lean animal proteins for overweight dogs 

This formula offers a low-calorie and low-fat diet with more protein to aid in weight loss and build lean muscle mass. It’s only 320 kcal/cup, making it the perfect solution for overweight Belgian Malinois who need fewer calories. 

But it still offers 26% Crude Protein from real chicken and ocean fish meals for building and maintaining strong muscles. 

Although it is low in fat — only offering 6.5% Crude Fat — it’s high in omega-3 amino acids from chicken fat and salmon oil. Ocean fish meal also offers natural collagen and healthy fats to boost skin health and make your dog’s coat shiny. 

Blueberries, cranberries, and pumpkin provide vitamin C, antioxidants, and magnesium. While these are great for immune support, they also boost energy levels — this can help your dog with increased activities and exercise. 

Dog owners say this is a great food to help your dog shed stubborn pounds. But some note that the high-fiber content caused digestive upset for their sensitive pups. 

We like:

Real animal protein adds flavor

Low-calorie to aid in weight loss

High-protein for lean muscles

Contains magnesium and vitamin C for energy

We don’t like:

High fiber can cause tummy issues

Expensive


Best for Eye Health

10 Nutro Ultra Large Breed Adult Dry Dog Food

Nutro Ultra Large Breed Adult Chicken
Our Rating:
  • First 5 Ingredients: Chicken, Chicken Meal, Whole Brown Rice, Brewers Rice, Rice Bran
  • Guaranteed Analysis: 23% Crude Protein, 12% Crude Fat, 4% Crude Fiber, 10% Moisture
  • Caloric Content: 346 kcal/cup
  • Special Diet: No Corn, No Wheat, No Soy, Pea-Free, Non-GMO
  • Life Stage: Adult
  • Key Feature: Dry dog food high in antioxidants and taurine for eye health 

This formula contains superfoods high in vitamin A, C, and omega fatty acids for Belgian Malinois prone to eye issues.  

It starts with chicken and salmon meals, which offer 22% Crude Protein. While lower in protein than the other formulas listed, it’s packed with healthy omega-fatty acids, specifically omega-9. Omega-9 helps boost brain and eye health, and it offers immune support. 

Whole chia seeds, dried spinach, dried blueberries, and dried kale are all packed with vitamin A, C, and antioxidants. These aid in immunity, support eye strength and neutralize potential oxidative damage. 

This is a grain-inclusive formula — offering whole grain oatmeal and whole brown rice. These provide low-glycemic carbohydrates and prebiotic fiber for digestive health. But it’s not the best choice if your dog is sensitive to grains. 

Pet parents say this food doesn’t cause any issues with their dog’s sensitive tummies, and they gobble down the bits with the dried fruits and vegetables. But some note that the kibble becomes stale too quickly. 

We like:

High in vitamins A & C for eye health

Contains omega amino acids for brain support

Includes grains for gut health

Picky eaters love it

We don’t like:

Low-protein

Spoils fast


belgian malinois adult dog

How to Choose Food for Your Belgian Malinois

Belgian Malinois may be considered medium-sized dogs, but they need just as much energy as larger breeds. Here’s how to choose the best food for your pooch. 

Nutritional Requirements

Belgian Malinois can quickly pack on the pounds. To avoid that, a higher protein diet with low to moderate fat content can be helpful — here’s what to look for.

High Protein

Belgian Malinois are the epitome of “high energy.” To keep with that, yours will need at least 22% protein in their dog food — for muscles as well as their activities.  

Also, focus on animal-based proteins as the main ingredients. Real chicken, salmon, and beef are ideal over by-products and meals, and novel proteins — like bison or venison — can be great for dogs who are allergic to other meat sources. 

Healthy Fats

While some dogs thrive on a low or moderate-fat diet, your Malinois will need plenty of fats in their daily diet. 

First, fats are converted to energy for dogs. Because these pups are natural herding dogs and have endless energy, healthy fats can help them keep up. 

Look for food with around 12% fat, but even up to 15% is okay as well. Also, look at fat sources like fish oil, chicken fat, coconut oil, and flaxseeds — these good fats are building blocks for joint mobility, healthy skin, and brain development.

Complex Carbohydrates

Grains aren’t usually bad for your dog. But, for some sensitive Belgian Malinois, grains can cause allergies and digestive problems. Plus, too many carbs can cause weight gain

Focus on healthier and more complex carbs — oatmeal, quinoa, sweet potatoes, and peas are great options. 

Fiber

Any dog food you buy will already have plenty of fiber for your Belgian Malinois. But, it’s important to make sure that they are getting enough without getting too much. 

If you notice constipation or diarrhea, your dog may not be getting enough fiber. You’ll need to consult your veterinarian for the proper amount of fiber your pup needs.

Vitamins and Minerals

Commercial dog food ensures that the appropriate vitamins and minerals are added to support dogs and their needs. So you shouldn’t need to supplement with extra vitamins and minerals. 

If your pup suffers from joint issues, which is common for Belgian Malinois, make sure the food you buy contains salmon or fish oil as a top ingredient. These provide omega fatty acids that can nourish and support joints and keep them flexible and strong.

What to Consider Buying Food for Belgian Malinois 

When buying dog food for your Belgian Malinois, remember a few things.  

Life Stage

First, how old is your canine, and where are they at in life? Puppy, adult, and senior dog foods are created to optimize the dogs’ health in those age ranges. 

For example, puppies usually require more fat and calories to keep up with their growth. At the same time, seniors may need more glucosamine to aid in healthy joints.

Based on your pup’s age, you’ll want to choose the right formula for them. 

Activity Levels

Next, is your dog active or sedentary? Do they work or train? Their activity levels will help determine how much you should feed them and if a higher-calorie diet is necessary. 

Active dogs require more calories and protein to aid in lean muscle mass, whereas sedentary pups don’t require as much energy. 

Health Issues

If your Belgian Malinois has health issues, like a sensitive stomach or allergies, this will also dictate the type of food you purchase. 

Be sure to speak with your vet about potential formulas they recommend or what you should be looking for based on your dog’s problems. 

Kibble Size

While Belgian Malinois are larger dogs, they don’t always require large kibble. Puppies and senior dogs may do better on medium-sized pieces or even need wet dog food instead of dry (if they’re missing teeth). 

Go smaller if you have a younger pup or older dog that needs help chewing. But don’t go too small; you don’t want your dog to wolf down their food either — this can cause bloat.

Budget

Last but not least, your budget may affect the food you buy for your canine. While some owners spare no expense, some need to keep costs down.

We have many options on this list that are more budget-friendly, so you don’t have to sacrifice quality to feed your pup! 

Ingredients to Avoid

Unfortunately, low-quality dog foods are filled with fillers and additives. These formulas can make it hard for your dog to absorb nutrients — or cause disorders like cancer in the worst-case scenarios. 

Some common ingredients to watch out for include artificial flavors, colors, and preservatives. When possible, also avoid by-product meats. And, if your dog is sensitive to them, find food without wheat, soy, or corn.

belgian malinois puppy

Common Belgian Malinois Health Issues 

Belgian Malinois can suffer from a few key health issues. Here’s what you need to know about them. 

Hip and Elbow Dysplasia 

Hip and elbow dysplasia usually affects medium and large dogs. Because of their build and stockier muscles, Belgian Malinois are at risk for both.  

The bones and joints don’t fit together correctly in both hip and elbow dysplasia. This causes the bones to rub against each other and, in turn, causes inflammation. Over time, this creates a loss of joint function and can even cause lameness. 

To try to prevent the symptoms of hip and elbow dysplasia, it’s important to keep your Belgian Malinois at a healthy weight. It’s also important to provide dog food that includes glucosamine, chondroitin, and essential fatty acids, which can help protect their joints.

Eye Health

Belgian Malinois are most at risk for Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA). 

Progressive Retinal Atrophy is the degeneration of rod and cone cells in your dog’s eyes. This can lead to blindness. It is a hereditary condition, isn’t painful, and has no cure. But, your veterinarian can help you change your dog’s lifestyle to fit their needs if they suffer from it. 

While you can’t prevent PRA, your dog’s diet can still include vitamins and minerals that help eye health. A few are vitamins A, C, and E.

Ingredients like carrots also provide minerals like beta-carotene, helping to maintain eye health and increase cognitive function.

Bloat

Bloat, also known as Gastric Dilation Volvulus (GDV), can be a common problem for Belgian Malinois. 

This happens when your dog’s stomach fills up with air or fluid and twists itself. In extreme cases of bloat, this blocks nutrients from getting to the other organs and can cause gas, vomiting, and even death. 

To avoid mild bloat, you’ll want to offer your pup more frequent meals or canned dog food to keep the belly from expanding. If your dog still has a distended stomach or complains of pain after eating, take them to your vet immediately. 

Osteoarthritis

Osteoarthritis is a chronic joint disease affecting many senior dogs and working pups. This condition causes the joints to lose cartilage, causing them to rub together and create friction.

This is often painful, so the earlier you catch it, the better. If your dog is highly active or works, take them to the vet every year so they can test for arthritis. You should do the same once your dog becomes a senior (around 6-7 years of age).

If your pup exhibits symptoms like stiffness, swelling, whining while walking, or loss of flexibility, these may be signs of osteoarthritis. Once a vet has diagnosed them, they may recommend a diet with more glucosamine and omega fatty acids to help protect the joints.

How Much Food Should A Belgian Malinois Eat?

Belgian Malinois may be medium-sized, but they need plenty of protein and fat, like large-breed dogs. 

They are a highly active breed, so focus on offering dog food with 25% to 30% protein. Plus, there should be at least 12% or more fat for adequate energy levels.

Puppies

Puppies will need about 30-35 calories per pound that they will weigh in adulthood. So if your dog weighs about 55 pounds, that’s at least 1,500 calories daily.

Puppies should eat a puppy formula exclusively until at least one year old. They also require smaller and more frequent meals, 3-5 a day, depending on their age. 

Adults

Once your dog reaches adulthood, you can lower the calories to about 25–30 calories per pound that they weigh. So the average 55-pound adult will need at least 1,400 calories a day. Once your Belgian Malinois is an adult, they can switch to twice-a-day mealtimes. 

Seniors

Seniors shouldn’t eat more than 25 calories per pound unless they’re still active or working (it should be 30 calories per pound). They need to be fed twice a day. 

While the average serving size will vary based on the food you choose, most of the formulas on this list offer at least 400 calories per cup. If splitting that across two meals, you’d need to feed about two cups per meal. 

Age Serving Size
Under 3 Months 1 cup food max, fed with mother’s milk
3 Months – 4 Months2-3 cups 
4 Months – 6 Months3 cups 
6 Months – 1 Year 4-5 cups 
1 Year – 5 Years4 cups 
6+ Years 2-3 cups

Be sure to read the feeding instructions on the formula you choose — they will typically have a chart that makes feeding time more manageable. 

Our Verdict

Belgian Malinois need food that can keep up with their energy needs and build. The best food for them would be high-protein and high-fat dog food and should also include real animal proteins and nutrients to help them thrive. 

Ziwi Peak Grain-Free dog food provides the vitamins and minerals your dog needs. It’s also convenient, and shelf-stable air-dried dog food.

This list can provide options if your pup has other needs, like a senior formula or lower-calorie dog food. 

FAQ

Got questions about your Belgian Malinois? Here are the answers you’re looking for! 

How much food should Belgian Malinois eat?

Due to their medium build and need for lean muscles, Belgian Malinois need 2–3 cups of food across 2 meals. Your pup should also be eating around 25 calories per pound that they weigh. Higher protein formulas are best.

Is a raw food diet good for Belgian Malinois?

Belgian Malinois are active dogs, and they need a lot of protein and healthy fats. Because of this, a raw diet can be a great option. But, it’s important to be safe and buy food from a trusted source to prevent foodborne illness.

How much should a healthy Belgian Malinois weigh?

A female adult Belgian Malinois should weigh between 55 and 66 pounds. For males, 64 to 75 pounds max is ideal. 

Is grain-free dog food good for Belgian Malinois?

While Belgian Malinois can eat grains, it’s important for them to be easy to digest and easy on their tummies. A grain-free diet can be beneficial if you want to avoid grains altogether. 

Is Belgian Malinois a large breed dog?

No. Belgian Malinois is considered a medium-breed dog. However, they need a higher protein and fat diet like larger dogs to keep up with their muscle tone and activity level. 

How much exercise does Belgian Malinois need?

They were bred to be herding dogs, so Belgian Malinois feel best when they can be active throughout the day. An hour or two of moderate exercise can be helpful, but the busier they are mentally and physically, the better. 

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AUTHOR
Caroline Cochran is a former veterinary technician who is passionate about helping fellow dog lovers learn about canine nutrition. Her best friend is a rescued Great Pyrenees named Syrah, who is also very enthusiastic about dog food.

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