What Can You Feed Dogs with Diabetes?

By Nancy O, AAHA Certified Diabetes Educator for Muffin’s Halo

After your dogs diagnosis of Diabetes, you will most likely need to change the food that you’re feeding your pup.  The biggest concern for you now is that your pup doesn’t get too much fat from their diet. 

What To Feed Dogs With Diabetes

Now that he/she is diabetic, pancreatitis is an issue that you want to avoid at all costs.  If your pup has never had pancreatitis, you want to find a food that is 12% (or below) to feed.  Don’t pay attention to the fat percentage on the back of the can or bag.  You want to figure out what the fat content is on a dry matter basis (Dry matter basis is a representation of nutrients (i.e. protein, fat, and fiber) which ignores the moisture content of the food. In other words, it’s the amount of protein, fat, and fiber that would be reported if the product’s moisture were completely removed).  There is a handy calculator online that you can make use of while you’re in the store if your phone has internet access.  It can be found here:  


Pups With History Of Pancreatitis

If your pup has had pancreatitis in the past, you will want to keep the fat content of the food at or below 10%.  This may seem impossible, but it isn’t.  There are many dry and canned options out there.  If you haven’t done so yet, join the group Canine Diabetes Support and Information on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/groups/CanineDiabetesSupportandInformation) they have most options for acceptable foods in their files.  They will also help you calculate the proper ingredient mix if your choice is to home cook for your pup.  

I can tell you that when it comes to food, it is one of the most important components in the equation to getting your pup in an acceptable range for BG (Blood Glucose).  If I had it to do all over again, I would home cook for my “sugar baby”.  Because I can work from home, I have the time and most days the energy to do so.  I’m a bit of a control freak, so knowing exactly what is going into my pup’s food is important to me.  When I had a sugar baby, I wasn’t working from home so cooking wasn’t going to happen.  I did well to feed myself! Lol


If you decide to home-cook, pay close attention to your BG (Blood Glucose) numbers as a home-cooked diet typically requires the least amount of insulin.  If you aren’t someone that enjoys cooking, there is no shame in feeding commercial food, just be sure that it falls within the parameters for a Diabetic Dog.  There are several “toppers” that you can use to entice your pup to eat and we will cover those in a future entry.  If you are a member of a support group (like Canine Diabetes Support and Information), they have all the tips and tricks that you need to know in their files, and their 18,700+ members will help you with any questions that you have.  It is really worth joining so that you know for sure that you are not in this alone!  

Muffin’s Halo is here to ensure that all dogs get what they need to live long, normal and healthy lives.  All us at (818) 943-9673 or email us at muffinshalo@gmail.com to find out how our blind dog halo bumper does not interfere while your diabetic dog eats.