9 Best Dog Foods for Maltese

9 Best Dog Foods for Maltese

Although small in size, Maltese dogs are loyal dogs and fun to have around. These toy dogs are always eager to please their owners. The best foods for Maltese dogs are those that meet the nutritional and health needs of these tiny canines.

High-quality proteins from real and identifiable sources are critical for strong bones and muscles. Maltese dogs are prone to obesity and hence need moderate fat, calorie, and carbs contents. Some Maltese dogs have sensitive tummies, and foods with fewer ingredients and free from fillers are the best.

In addition, most Maltese dogs are picky eaters. Their best food should therefore be highly palatable. Moderate fat values and freeze-drying add flavor to the food to attract these picky eaters. Some Maltese dogs are susceptible to joint problems, so their food should have joint-friendly supplements like chondroitin, calcium, phosphorus, and glucosamine. 

Lastly, the best food for Malteses should be teeth-friendly, as these breeds are predisposed to dental problems. Look for recipes with teeth cleaning properties. Dry food is also preferable to wet food for dental wellness.

Selecting the best food for your Maltese dog can be hectic. However, our research makes it easier for you. It is crucial to choose the right food as it reduces the problems of allergies, tummy upsets, unhealthy weight, and boosts your dog’s mood.

What are the top five brands for the best dog food for Maltese?

There are many food manufacturers with the best food for Maltese. Here’s a list of the top five brands:

  • Wellness Core
  • Taste of the Wild
  • Merrick
  • Orijen
  • Petcurean

Each brand has a unique price. The average price for the best dog food for Maltese is $43.98 with prices ranging from $26.98  to $69.99 for 12-15 lb bags.  Puppies are still growing, and hence need lots of energy compared to senior dogs that enjoy lying around. Toy breeds including Maltese dogs have small bodies, and hence need fewer calories than large breeds like the Great Danes. 

From our research, here are the best dog foods for Maltese dogs:

Note: These prices are as of April 28th, 2022.

1. Wellness CORE Grain-Free Small Breed Turkey & Chicken Recipe Dry Dog Food

Wellness Core Grain-Free Formula from Wellpet LLC is the best choice for your Maltese dog as it provides premium nutrition for overall wellness.

The initial production date is March 17th, 2012, and it targets small, extra small, and toy breeds. The major ingredients include Deboned Turkey, Turkey Meal, Chicken Meal, Lentils, and Peas.

  • This recipe is perfect for your toy Malteses as it comes in a small kibble for easy chewing and digestion.
  • For lean muscle mass, it features Turkey and chicken for high-quality proteins (36%).
  • Some Maltese dogs are prone to joint problems, and this meal comes in handy with calcium, phosphorus, chondroitin, and glucosamine.
  • Consuming this delicacy gives your dog lustrous skin, a smooth coat, and proper vision with omegas and vitamin A.
  • The 16% fat value and calorie content of 412 Kcal/cup fuel your dog’s energy levels.
  • This meal is fortified with probiotics, antioxidants, and taurine for digestive, immune, and heart health.
  • It is crafted in the USA using high-quality ingredients from trusted suppliers.

Wellness Core Grain-Free Formula is ideal for pups with tummy sensitivities and grain allergies. The daily intake varies depending on your dog’s weight. For example, Malteses weighing 2-4 lbs need ¼ to ½ cups, and those weighing 5-8 lbs need ½ to ¾ cups. A 12-lbs bag costs $45.98.

2. Taste of the Wild Appalachian Valley Small Breed Grain-Free Dry Dog Food

Give your Maltese dog the real taste of the wild with Taste of the Wild Appalachian Formula from Diamond Pet Foods, Inc. 

The first manufacturing date is September 8th, 2015, and it targets extra small, toy, and small breeds. The key ingredients include Venison, Lamb Meal, Garbanzo Beans, Peas, and Lentils.

  • This is an excellent selection for Maltese dogs as it features real meat as the number one ingredient for thick bones and muscles.
  • The fat value of 18% boosts stamina and adds flavor for your picky eater, Maltese. The calorie value of 422 Kcal/cup also provides sufficient energy for your dog.
  • Blueberries and raspberries are excellent sources of antioxidants to protect your dog against free radicals that cause cancer.
  • Omega-6 and 3 fatty acids keep your dog’s coat and skin healthy.
  • It is formulated in the USA by a family-owned brand using high-value ingredients.
  • Probiotics and prebiotics support digestive health, while taurine ensures a healthy heart.

Taste of the Wild Appalachian Formula is suitable for dogs with grain allergies. The daily consumption differs based on your dog’s weight; dogs weighing 3 lbs need ⅓ cup, and those weighing 5 lbs need ½ cup. A 14-lbs bag costs $36.99.

3. Merrick Lil’ Plates Puppy Food, Grain-Free Puppy Dry Dog Food

Give your Maltese Puppy the best nutrition with Merrick Lil’ Plates by Merrick Pet Care.

The initial production date is February 24th, 2017, and it targets extra-small small, and toy breeds. The main ingredients include Deboned Chicken, Chicken Meal, Turkey Meal, Sweet potatoes, and Potatoes.

  • Real deboned chicken is the number one ingredient for top-notch proteins to fuel your dog’s muscles.
  • This diet is formulated with probiotics and prebiotic fiber for gut and bowel wellness.
  • Maltese dogs are susceptible to dental problems, and this diet comes in handy with its crunchy texture. It also comes in a small kibble size for your toy dog.
  • It is free from corn, wheat, soy, gluten, and grain for lower risks of allergies and sensitivities.
  • Flaxseed is an excellent source of omegas for skin and coat health, while DHA supports your puppy’s cognitive wellness.
  • Consuming this recipe reduces the risks of joint problems with chondroitin and glucosamine. 

Merrick Lil’ Plates Formula is best for dogs’ sensitive digestion. The feeding instructions are given according to your dog’s body weight. Maltese dogs weighing 2 lbs require ¼ cup and those weighing 5 lbs need ½ cup. A 12-lbs bag costs $44.98.

4. Orijen Regional Red Dry Dog Food

Delight your Malte dog’s instincts with Orijen Regional Red Formula from Champion Petfoods.

 The first production date is March 15th, 2019, and it targets small and medium breeds. The main ingredients include Beef, Wild Boar, Goat, Lamb, and Lamb Liver.

  • It uses 85% high-quality animal ingredients for proteins to boost your Maltese’s muscles.
  • The main ingredients are always raw or fresh to massage your dog’s wild nature.
  • It is crafted in the USA with the best ingredients for overall wellness.
  • This diet is freeze-dried coated to appeal to your picky eater, Maltese. The fat value of 18% also adds flavor to the food.
  • DHA supports brain wellness while calcium, phosphorus, and glucosamine ensure proper growth and development of bones, muscles, and joints.
  • The high-calorie value of 463 Kcal/cup keeps your dog active throughout the day.

Orijen Regional Red Formula is suitable for dogs with sensitive tummies, grain allergies, and chicken intolerance. Less active Maltese dogs weighing 5-15 lbs need ¼ to ⅔ cups, while the active ones require ½ to 1 cup per day. Bodyweight ranging from 15-100 lbs needs ⅔ to 2 ⅔ for less activity and 1 to 4 cups for high activity. A 13-lbs bag costs $69.99.

5. Petcurean Go! Sensitivity + Shine Salmon Dry Dog Food

Lengthen your dog’s life with Petcurean Sensitivity Formula from Philip’s Feed & Pet Supply. The first manufacturing date is March 9th, 2012, and it targets all dog breeds.

 The main ingredients include Deboned Salmon, Salmon Meal, Tapioca, Peas, and Lentils. 

  • This recipe is the best choice for Malteses with tummy sensitivities and allergies as it is crafted with fewer ingredients, including one source of protein.
  • Salmon is a great source of omega fatty acids for skin and coat wellness.
  • Dried chicory root has high-quality fiber for digestive wellness and lower risks of tummy upsets.
  • It is free from artificial preservatives and by-product meals for overall health.
  • The high-value protein works together with calcium and phosphorus for thick bones and muscles.
  • It is packed with antioxidants for improved immunity and beta-carotene for eye and skin wellness.

Petcurean Sensitivity Formula is ideal for dogs with sensitive digestion. Malteses weighing 5-10 lbs need ½ to ¾ cups for less activity, ½ to 1 cup for high activity, and ¾ to 1 ¼ for puppies. However, these amounts may vary depending on your dog’s age, climate conditions, and breed type. A gradual transition period of 10 days to 2 weeks is best for your Maltese dog. A 12-lbs bag costs $49.99.

6. Blue Buffalo Small Breed & Adult Dogs Food Indoor Chicken & Brown Rice Recipe Dry Dog Food 

Unleash the wolf in your tiny Maltese with Blue Buffalo Small Breed Formula from the Blue Buffalo Company, Ltd.

The first production date is September 30th, 2004, and it targets extra small, toy, and small breeds. The key ingredients include Deboned Chicken, Chicken Meal, Brown Rice, Oatmeal, and Barley.

  • This formula is perfect for your Malteses small jaws as it comes in a small kibble designed to boost tartar removal for healthy teeth.
  • The protein value of 26%, fat value of 15%, and calorie content of 396 Kcal/cup promote your dog’s muscle power and provide sufficient energy for physical activities. 
  • Fish meal and flaxseed are important sources of omega 6 and 3 fatty acids for smooth skin and a bright coat.
  • Maltese dogs are prone to obesity, and this meal is the best selection as it has moderate fat and L-carnitine to break down excess fat.
  • Antioxidants and chelated minerals are important for improved immunity and maximum absorption of essential nutrients.
  • Consuming this diet promotes cartilage health with calcium, phosphorus, and glucosamine.

Blue Buffalo Small Breed Formula is suitable for dogs with tummy sensitivities. Dogs weighing up to 5 lbs need ¼ to ½ cups, while those weighing 6-10 lbs need ½ to 1 cup daily. This translates to 99-396 calories per day. A 15-lbs bag costs $39.99. 

7. Wellness CORE Grain-Free Small Breed Dry Dog Food

Awaken the champion in your Malteses dog with Wellness CORE Grain-Free Formula from WellPet LLC.

The initial production date is April 10th, 2018, and it targets small breeds. The major ingredients include Deboned Turkey, Chicken Meal, Turkey Meal, Peas, and Chicken Fat. 

  • It comes in a small kibble for easy chewing and digestion.
  • It supports your puppy’s cognitive wellness with DHA.
  • Premium proteins from deboned turkey are best for strong and healthy muscles.
  • It is crafted in the USA using premium ingredients for your dog’s overall wellness.
  • Prebiotics and probiotics are important for digestive wellness, while the optimal levels of taurine promote cardiac health.
  • This diet has omega 6 and 3 fatty acids for lustrous skin and a bright coat.
  • Calcium and phosphorus support cartilage health, while vitamin E protects your dog against oxidative damage.

Wellness CORE Grain-Free Formula is best for dogs with sensitive tummies. Puppies weighing 7 lbs need 1 ½ cups at 6 to 11 weeks, 1 cup at 3 to 4 months, ¾ cup at 5 to 7 months, and ⅔ cups at 8 to 12 months. Pregnant and nursing dogs also need this food for the cognitive wellness of their puppies. Feed them 50% more food than puppies. A 12-lbs bag costs $45.98.

8. Nutro Natural Choice Puppy Dry Dog Food

Delight your Maltese puppy taste buds with Nutro Natural Formula from Nutro. The initial production date is February 2nd, 2015, and it targets all dog breeds.

The primary ingredients include Chicken, Whole Grain Barley,  Chicken Meal,  Whole Grain Brown Rice, and Brewers Rice. The premium protein (28%)  from real chicken fuels your dog’s muscles, while the fat value of 16% and calorie content of 390 Kcal/cup ensure your Maltes stay energetic throughout the day.

  • It is free from wheat, corn, soy, chicken by-products, and molasses to suit your sensitive Maltese.
  • DHA supports vision and brain health, while calcium is responsible for strong muscles, bones, and joints.
  • This diet is jam-packed with antioxidants for improved immunity.
  • The high-quality fiber from wholesome sources promotes digestive wellness and reduces the frequencies of tummy upsets.

Nutro Natural Formula is best for dogs with sensitive digestion. The daily consumption depends on your puppy’s age and weight with puppies weighing 15 lbs needing 2 ⅔ cups at 1 to 3 months, 2 ¼ cups at 3-6 months, 2 cups at 6-9 months, and 1 ½ cups at 9-12 months. Transition to Nutro recipe within 6 days. A gradual transition lowers the risks of digestive problems and allergic reactions. A 13-lbs bag costs $26.98.

9. Natural Balance L.I.D. Dry Dog Food

Give your Maltese a balanced diet with Natural Balance L.I.D Formula from Natural Balance. The first production date is October 2nd, 2001, and it targets all dog breeds.

The main ingredients include Lamb, Brown Rice, Lamb Meal, Brewers Rice, and Rice Bran.

  • It features real lamb as the number one ingredient for your dog’s muscle power.
  • Brown rice is an excellent source of fiber for healthy digestion, while taurine supports heart health.
  • Consuming this recipe supports strong bones, muscles, and joints with calcium and phosphorus.
  • Omega-6 and 3 fatty acids give your Maltese a healthy skin and coat and lower the frequencies of shedding.
  • It is made in the USA using high-quality ingredients from trusted sources for maximum benefit to your dog.
  • It has 370 calories per cup and a 12% fat value for your dog’s stamina.

Natural Balance L.ID Formula is suitable for pups with sensitive digestion and chicken intolerance. The daily feeding depends on your dog’s body weight. For example, Malteses weighing up to 10 lbs need 1 cup daily, while those weighing 10-20 lbs need 1 to 1 ½ cups. You can adjust these amounts according to the temperature, age, climate, and activity levels. A 12-lbs bag costs $34.98.

What are the facts that you should know about dog foods for Maltese? 

Maltese need foods crafted with high-quality ingredients to boost their quality of life. Here are other facts to know about the best dog food for Maltese:

  • All dogs need proteins for muscle power, and Maltese is not an exception. The proteins should come from real meat, including turkey and chicken. Read the labels carefully for the ingredients, ensuring the first ingredient is real meat. The more the meat sources, the more nutritious the meal is for your tiny dog.
  • Some Malteses are picky eaters, and the best food for them should be richly flavored to delight their taste buds. Fats add flavor to the food. You should, however, select moderate fat foods since Malteses are prone to obesity.
  • Maltese are susceptible to dental issues, and their best food should have teeth-friendly properties. Kibble with a hard texture is preferable, as it removes tartar for healthy teeth. Dry foods also make dogs chew for longer, thus strengthening teeth and reducing the risks of plaque build-up.
  • Vitamin A and omega fatty acids come in handy for the best foods for Maltese, as they promote coat and skin wellness.
  • Some Maltese are predisposed to joint problems, especially when they gain lots of weight. This calls for food with joint-friendly supplements including chondroitin, glucosamine, calcium, and phosphorus.

What are the best dog foods for Maltese according to dog sizes?

The type of food for your dog depends majorly on its size. Large dogs have unique needs that call for unique ingredients.

The Best Food For Small-Sized Maltese

  • Now fresh Small Breed Grain-Free Dry Food: It is crafted with fresh deboned real meat for amino acids that build your dog’s muscles. Raw ingredients are also attractive to your picky eater, Maltese. The ingredients are cooked at low temperatures to retain flavor and essential nutrients. This diet is packed with omegas for coat and skin health.

The Best Dog Food for Medium-Sized Maltese

  • Victor Select Grain-Free Yuk River Dry Food: Make your medium Maltese a champion with Victor Select Grain-Free Formula. This recipe features high-quality ingredients like fish as the number one ingredient for premium proteins to promote muscle wellness. It is also packed with prebiotics and probiotics for immune and gut health.

The Best Dog Food for Large Maltese

  • Merrick Backcountry Raw Infused Dry Food: This diet suits your picky eater, Maltese, as it is freeze-dried for maximum flavor. Your large Maltese also benefits from high-quality proteins from premium sources, including duck and lamb. This meal is highly-digestible to lower the risks of sensitivities and allergies.

What are the best dog foods for Maltese with different ingredients?

Ingredients are sources of different nutrients for your dog’s overall growth. They are therefore crucial when choosing the best food for your Maltese.

The Best Dog Food with Pumpkin for Maltese

  • Purina Beyond Salmon, Egg, & Pumpkin Formula Dry Food: Pumpkin is an excellent source of fiber and beta-carotene for digestive, coat, skin, and vision health. This superfood is packed with antioxidants for protection against free radicals that cause inflammation. Salmon is the number one ingredient for proteins and amino acids for lean muscles. Salmon is also skin-friendly.

The Best Dog Food with Glucosamine and Chondroitin

  • Diamond Naturals Senior Dry Food: Some Maltese are prone to joint problems and need chondroitin and glucosamine foods. This recipe is crafted with glucosamine hydrochloride and chondroitin sulfate for healthy joints. It has L-carnitine to break down excess fat and reduce the risk of obesity.

What are the best dog foods for Maltese with different health conditions?

Maltese dogs are exposed to various health conditions, including pancreatitis and diabetes. These conditions make it crucial for pet parents to serve the right diet with ingredients.

The Best Dog Food for Maltese with Pancreatitis

  • Solid Gold Low-Fat Low-Calorie Fit & Fabulous dry Food: Keep your Maltese fit and fabulous with the Solid Gold Low-Fat Formula. Pancreatitis is the inflammation of the pancreas, and consuming fatty diets escalates the problem since it overworks the pancreas. The maximum fat value of 9.55 and low-calorie content of 330 Kcal/cup makes this formula the best selection for pancreatic Maltese.

The Best Dog Food for Maltese with Diabetes

  • Royal Canin Glycobalance Veterinary Diet Dry Food: This recipe is specifically crafted to help with post-prandial blood glucose levels. It contains a moderate fat value for a healthy weight. A healthy weight reduces the risks of chronic diseases, including diabetes. Antioxidants and proteins boost immune and muscle well-being.

How many calories should I feed the Maltese dog?

The number of calories to feed your Maltese will vary depending on the food brand. Different food brands have different calorie recommendations. But the rule of the thumb is to use your dog’s current weight to determine the number of calories needed. Serving the right amounts of calories ensures your dog maintains an ideal weight.

Maltese puppies are highly active and need more calories due to their fast metabolism. The ideal number of calories for puppies is 55 calories per body weight. On the other hand, adult Maltese need 45 calories per day. The table below is a guide on how to calculate the daily caloric intake:

Stage 

Daily calories

Approximate weight

Calculation

Number of calories per day

Puppy 

55

5 pounds 

55*5 

275 calories

Adult 

45

20 pounds

45*20

900 calories

What are the common foods are Maltese dogs allergic to? 

Maltese are picky eaters. They can also be allergic to some types of foods. Maltese that suffer from environmental allergy are most likely to get food allergies too. Below are some of the foods that Maltese are allergic to:

  • Eggs
  • Milk
  • Corn
  • Wheat
  • Soy
  • Some Maltese can be allergic to chicken protein

These allergies present different symptoms including rash, thinning hair, itching, wheezing, and ear, nose, and eye problems. Food allergies also cause various health problems, including gastrointestinal distress and bloating. Gastric distress presents in vomiting, diarrhea, and tummy upset.

The best way to avoid allergies is to keep your dog away from the allergen. You can also purchase antihistamines from the vet. Look for skin-friendly recipes with omega fatty acids to reduce allergies.

Is it harmful to overfeed your Maltese?

Yes, overfeeding your Maltese is harmful. Just like humans, there are many risks of overfeeding.  Listed below are the reasons not to overfeed your Maltese:

  • Overfeeding leads to obesity. Obesity is a recipe for other health problems including pancreatitis, diabetes, and heart problems.
  • Overfeeding makes healing from injuries more difficult due to the reduced mobility that results from weight gain.
  • Overfeeding makes exercising hard, thus exposing your dog to lifestyle problems. Highly mobile dogs rarely get sick.

To reduce the risks of overfeeding, follow the feeding guidelines and adjust them according to your dog’s weight. Spreading the meals throughout the day is also helpful than serving one meal at a go. Avoid giving your dog table scraps as it makes them consume more than the right amounts. This is because they are both their food and the table scraps.

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Sarah Brady

Sarah Brady is an animal lover and the proud dog-mom of a Golden Retriever named Brody and an Italian Greyhound named Jessup. Unfortunately, Jessup developed serious allergies to many different types of dog foods and ingredients when she was just a puppy. Meanwhile, Brody could eat seemingly anything and carry on as healthy as could be. Sarah spent hours of time researching and testing different foods and brands before finding something that worked for little Jessup. She wants Dog Food Care to simplify this experience for future dog-parents who face food allergy or tolerance issues of their own.