20 Best Low-Sodium Dog Foods

By Kevin Myers | 2021 Update

Some dogs may need to be on a low-sodium diet. But trying to find the best low-sodium dog food can be overwhelming. That’s because the vast majority of commercial dog foods at your local store have high sodium content So, how can you find the right food product for your dog?

To make your search easier, we’ve reviewed the best low-sodium dog foods out there.

Let’s dive in!

The 8 Best Low-Sodium Dog Foods — Top Picks

Top ProductsRatingTop 5 Ingredient
1. The Honest Kitchen Whole Grain Beef Recipe4.2Dehydrated Beef, Organic Oats, Organic Barley, Organic Flaxseed, Dehydrated Potatoes
2. Hill’s Science Diet Adult Sensitive Stomach and Skin4.6Chicken, Brewers Rice, Chicken Meal, Yellow Peas, Cracked Pearled Barley
3. Wellness Core Reduced-Fat Turkey and Chicken Dog Food4.7Deboned Turkey, Turkey Meal (source of Glucosamine), Chicken Meal (source of Chondroitin Sulfate), Lentils, Peas
4. The Honest Kitchen Grain-Free Turkey Recipe4.4Dehydrated Turkey, Organic Flaxseed, Dehydrated Potatoes, Dehydrated Spinach, Dehydrated Carrots
5. Natural Balance Limited Ingredient Diet Lamb Meal and Brown Rice Formula4.6Lamb, Brown Rice, Lamb Meal, Brewers Rice, Rice Bran
6. Instinct Raw Boost Healthy Weight Grain-Free Recipe with Real Chicken4.6Chicken, Chicken Meal, Peas, Tapioca, Menhaden Fish Meal | Form: Dry, Freeze-Dried
7. Castor & Pollux ORGANIX Organic Chicken & Sweet Potato Recipe Grain-Free Dry Dog Food4.7Organic Chicken, Organic Chicken Meal, Organic Sweet Potatoes, Organic Chickpeas, Organic Peas
8. Newman’s Own Adult Formula Dry Dog Food4.7Chicken, Organic Barley, Organic Oats, Organic Peas, Chicken Meal

1. The Honest Kitchen Whole Grain Beef Recipe

Top 5 Ingredients: Dehydrated Beef, Organic Oats, Organic Barley, Organic Flaxseed, Dehydrated Potatoes

This dog food contains high-quality ingredients for optimal nutrition. All the ingredients are natural and have low salt content. The recipe features ranch-raised beef meat and organic whole grains. Also, it has healthy fruits and vegetables such as potatoes, cranberries, carrots, spinach, and apples. 

This dehydrated formula is completely free from by-products, preservatives, wheat, corn, or soy. It is a healthy choice for adult dog maintenance and senior dogs who need weight loss help.

2. Hill’s Science Diet Adult Sensitive Stomach and Skin

Top 5 Ingredients: Chicken, Brewers Rice, Chicken Meal, Yellow Peas, Cracked Pearled Barley

This dog food is lower in sodium content than most commercial dog formulas. It contains minimally processed, whole-food ingredients for complete and balanced nutrition. It is a great choice for sensitive dogs and can reverse the health problems caused by high-sodium diets.

This recipe is clinically proven to help with immune and coat health. It has real chicken and prebiotic fiber to support healthy muscle nourishment and digestion. Also, this recipe is free of preservatives, artificial flavors, and colors. If you have a picky eater, this highly palatable recipe is an excellent choice.

3. Wellness Core Reduced-Fat Turkey and Chicken Dog Food

Top 5 Ingredients: Deboned Turkey, Turkey Meal (source of Glucosamine), Chicken Meal (source of Chondroitin Sulfate), Lentils, Peas

This nutrient-dense dog food is great for your sensitive dog. It contains natural, wholesome ingredients to keep your pet healthy and active.

The Wellness Core recipe has reduced fat and sodium content. It features premium proteins including turkey, chicken, and salmon oil to support lean muscle development. This recipe contains fruits, vegetables, and whole grains fortified with antioxidants, glucosamine, probiotics, and omega fatty acids. It is also gluten-free, which makes it perfect for dogs with digestive issues.

4. The Honest Kitchen Grain-Free Turkey Recipe

Top 5 Ingredients: Dehydrated Turkey, Organic Flaxseed, Dehydrated Potatoes, Dehydrated Spinach, Dehydrated Carrots

This recipe is another great option from The Honest Kitchen. This dehydrated recipe is completely grain-free, making it perfect for picky eaters who can’t tolerate coarse grains.

The recipe features cage-free turkey with antioxidant-rich organic produce such as potatoes, spinach, flaxseed, coconut, apples, and cranberries. Plus, the formula provides essential vitamins and minerals. It’s one of the best low-sodium and grain-free food products for your dog’s health and vitality.

5. Natural Balance Limited Ingredient Diet Lamb Meal and Brown Rice Formula

Top 5 Ingredients: Lamb, Brown Rice, Lamb Meal, Brewers Rice, Rice Bran

This recipe is perfect for dogs who need a low-sodium and grain-free diet. If your pup has food sensitivities, consider this limited ingredient dog food.

This low-calorie dog food has no fillers, meat by-products, and preservatives. This formula uses quality protein and carbohydrate sources, providing optimal nutrition for all breeds. Wholesome ingredients such as lamb meal, brown rice, and tomato pomace deliver essential vitamins and minerals for healthy growth.

6. Instinct Raw Boost Healthy Weight Grain-Free Recipe with Real Chicken

Top 5 Ingredients:  Chicken, Chicken Meal, Peas, Tapioca, Menhaden Fish Meal | Form: Dry, Freeze-Dried

Instinct Raw Boost recipe is rich in animal proteins and features low sodium content. It’s one of the best grain-free dog foods out there.

This recipe is free from by-product meals, artificial colors, and preservatives. It features freeze-dried raw meat and unlocks your pet’s potential to thrive. It also contains L-carnitine to support a healthy metabolism. You can rest assured that all the nutrients come from non-grain, healthy sources.

7. Castor and Pollux ORGANIX Organic Chicken & Sweet Potato Recipe Grain-Free Dry Dog Food

Top 5 Ingredients: Organic Chicken, Organic Chicken Meal, Organic Sweet Potatoes, Organic Chickpeas, Organic Peas

The Castor & Pollux ORGANIX is a great-tasting recipe with natural ingredients. It has low sodium content and provides exceptional nutrition. If you’re looking for high-quality and safe ingredients, consider the Castor & Pollux dry dog food.

This recipe is perfect for dogs that are sensitive to sodium, gluten, and grains. It features organic free-range chicken and sweet potatoes as the main ingredients. Plus, the formula is free from preservatives, artificial flavors, and colors. It provides complete and balanced nutrition for your precious dog.

8. OrgaNOMics Turkey, Duck and Chicken Dinner Organic Grain-Free Pate Wet Dog Food

Top 5 Ingredients: Turkey, Duck, Chicken, (Filtered) Water Sufficient for Processing, Organic Carrots, Organic Peas

Provide your dog with optimal nutrition with this tasty dog food by OrgaNomics. The recipe features real turkey, duck, and chicken as the primary ingredients. It also contains antioxidants, prebiotics, chelated minerals, and vitamins to support your dog’s overall health. Additionally, this recipe has minimal salt content to suit dogs on a low sodium diet.

The recipe has organic ingredients like brown rice, carrots, peas, cranberries, and sweet potatoes. It’s one of the best low-sodium dog food options that you can serve your dog.  

9. Newman’s Own Adult Formula Dry Dog Food

Top 5 Ingredients: Chicken, Organic Barley, Organic Oats, Organic Peas, Chicken Meal

This tasty recipe by Newman’s Own is a holistic dog food with minimal salt content. The premium dog formula is rich in balanced nutrition and features organic ingredients to give your pup a healthy meal with the ideal protein, carbohydrates, and fats ratio. This recipe also contains essential fatty acids and antioxidants.

This adult dog food is perfect for all breeds and contains a precise blend of whole grains, chelated minerals, and vitamins that maximize nutritional uptake. Finally, this low-sodium meal is a great option for your dog’s health and wellness.

10. Newman’s Own Organics 95% Chicken and Liver Dinner Grain-Free Canned Dog Food

Top 5 Ingredients: Organic Chicken, Organic Chicken Broth, Organic Chicken Liver, Tricalcium Phosphate, Organic Pea Flour

This highly digestible formula is a great choice for dogs with dietary restrictions. It features a delectable blend of organic chicken and vegetables.

This grain-free recipe by Newman’s Own Organics is a healthy option that offers amazing nutritional value to your dog. It promotes your dog’s longevity by using a single organic protein source with low sodium content. Feed your little pup the best nutrition that’s free from artificial flavors, preservatives, colors, corm, and wheat.

11. Primal Turkey and Sardine Formula Nuggets Grain-Free Raw Freeze-Dried Dog Food

Top 5 Ingredients: Turkey, Turkey Necks, Whole Sardines, Turkey Hearts, Turkey Livers

Serve your dog a raw-food diet that offers all the nutritional benefits he needs. This unique blend of raw, freeze-dried dog food is hormone-free and low in sodium. It contains high-quality protein, calcium supplements, and omega fatty acids for dog’s optimal health and growth.

The natural diet features a variety of sustainably sourced ingredients and is both gluten- and grain-free. Additionally, it has optimum amino acids, essential vitamins, and minerals to strengthen your dog’s immune system.

12. Merrick Real Texas Beef & Sweet Potato Recipe Grain-Free Adult Dry Dog Food

Top 5 Ingredients: Deboned Beef, Lamb Meal, Salmon Meal, Sweet Potatoes, Potatoes

Fill up your dog’s food bowl with a meal crafted with quality ingredients sourced from trusted farmers. It’s a great choice for dogs that need to be on a low-sodium diet.

This palatable dog food helps boost your dog’s overall health. It features deboned beef and sweet potatoes as the primary ingredients. Plus, this grain- and gluten-free diet contains omega fatty acids to enhance your dog’s skin and coat health. If you want to improve your dog’s energy levels and maintain optimal weight, this one from Merrick is a great option.

13. TruDog Crunchy Munchy Feed Me Beef Bonanza Grain-Free Raw Freeze-Dried Dog Food

Top 5 Ingredients: Beef, Beef Tripe, Beef Lung, Ground Beef Bone, Beef Liver

This special diet by TruDog is a great low-sodium option that supports your dog’s health. The freeze-drying process locks in flavor and nutrition, making this a great dog food for picky eaters.

This freeze-dried food is a hypoallergenic option and is suitable for dogs of all breeds and ages. It features nutrient-rich ingredients like beef and herring oil to support lean muscle development and healthy digestion. Plus, this raw food is free of gluten, fillers, soy, corn, artificial flavors, added salt, hormones, added sugar, and preservatives.

14. Purina Pro Plan – Focus Puppy Large Breed Formula Dry Dog Food

Top 5 Ingredients: Chicken, Brewer’s Rice, Corn Gluten Meal, Wholegrain Corn, Poultry By-Product Meal

Provide your puppy the wholesome nutrition they deserve with Purina Pro Plan Focus Dry Dog Food. This dry food has a combination of high-quality protein and other ingredients for optimal growth and development.

This tasty and crunchy kibble is also rich in antioxidants to strengthen your dog’s immune system. The addition of omega-rich fish oils helps support your dog’s brain and vision development. Plus, it’s one of the best low-sodium dog foods on the market right now. If you want to help your pup grow big and strong, consider the Purina Pro Plan dry dog food.

15. American Journey — Salmon and Sweet Potato Recipe Grain-Free Dry Dog Food

Top 5 Ingredients: Deboned Salmon, Chicken Meal, Turkey Meal, Peas, Sweet Potatoes

If you prefer a low-sodium meal for your growing pup, this dry dog food from American Journey is your best pick. This formula uses deboned salmon as its primary ingredient; the kibble has high-quality protein sources to support growth and muscle development. It also has nutrient-rich fruits and vegetables that deliver minerals, antioxidants, and vitamins and support healthy immunity.

16. Evanger’s Organics Cooked Chicken Canned Dog Food Grain-Free Supplement

Top 3 Ingredients: Organic Chicken, Natural Well Water, Organic Guar Gum

This low-sodium wet food option is ideal if you want to give your pup more than regular kibble. It will keep them hydrated and healthy.

The grain-free and organic option includes cooked chicken for amazing flavor. It has high-quality protein, carbs, crude fiber, and fat. Lastly, this dog food is free of soy, wheat, corn, animal by-products, artificial ingredients, and preservatives.

17. Firstmate — Australian Lamb Limited Ingredient Dog Food

Top 5 Ingredients: Lamb Meal, Burbank Potato, Norkotah Potato, Chicken Fat, Tomato Pomace

FirstMate’s recipe is a great option to enhance your dog’s overall health. It is a hypoallergenic recipe free of gluten, grains, salt, and other ingredients that can disrupt digestion. It contains carefully selected ingredients, including a single-source novel protein.

This recipe is perfect for all breeds and life stages. It has a mix of cranberries, blueberries, and raspberries for stronger immunity. Plus, the formula has natural fiber for easy nutrient absorption. You do not need a prescription for this product.

18. CANIDAE PURE Limited Ingredient Grain-Free Lamb & Pea Recipe Dry Dog Food

Top 5 Ingredients: Lamb, Turkey Meal, Sweet Potatoes, Garbanzo Beans, Chicken Fat

If you’re looking for a palatable recipe that is not high in sodium, you’ll want to consider the Canidae Pure Limited Ingredient Dry Dog Food. This recipe features wholesome ingredients, such as lamb, turkey meal, sweet potatoes, and peas. With high protein content and simple carbs, dog food promotes muscle nourishment and keeps your dog active and happy.

This dog food also has micronutrients like minerals, vitamins, antioxidants, and probiotics for whole-body health. The formula provides omega fatty acids that promote skin and coat health. Because the recipe has limited ingredients, it eliminates corn, salt, wheat, soy, and other artificial additives.

19. Nulo Freestyle Beef Grain-Free Recipe With Apples Freeze-Dried Raw Dog Food

Top 5 Ingredients: Beef, Beef Heart, Apples, Sweet Potato, Apple Cider Vinegar

This freeze-dried recipe features raw foods like beef and sweet potatoes. It has fewer artificial ingredients and is low in sodium. Beef delivers essential amino acids that promote muscle growth, and fruits and vegetables offer carbs and other micronutrients.

The formula also features GanedanBC30 probiotics for healthy digestion. Because the food is freeze-dried, it is minimally processed and contains less salt content.

20. AvoDerm Advanced Sensitive Support Lamb and Sweet Potato Formula Grain-Free Adult Dry Dog Food

Top 5 Ingredients: Lamb, Peas, Garbanzo Beans, Canola Oil, Sweet Potato

If your dog needs low sodium dog food to live a healthy life, consider AvoDerm’s Advanced Sensitive Support Dog Food. The recipe features lamb meat, a novel protein source that is full of amino acids, and sweet potato, an easily digestible carbohydrate. It doesn’t have grains, wheat, corn, soy, or artificial additives, making the dog food a great pick for sensitive dogs.

The food is also rich in dietary fibers that further improve digestive health. Finally, it has a range of vitamins, minerals, and omega fatty acids so that your dog can look and feel healthy.

Related:

What to Look for in a Low-Sodium Food

Low-sodium dog food should be nutritionally similar to regular dog food, aside from the reduced salt content. 

The best dog food has high-quality ingredients for complete and balanced nutrition.  

High Protein Content

The best dog food features a high protein source as the primary ingredient. Dogs are omnivores and require whole protein foods to stay active and healthy. Look for items like deboned turkey, deboned chicken, beef, lamb, pork, trout, or salmon.

Complex Carbs

Look for whole grains and other carbs with a high nutritional value. Carbohydrates are an important part of your dog’s diet, but not all carbohydrates are healthy. For example, white rice has a higher glycemic index and provides very little fiber. Look for quality carb sources such as sweet potatoes and peas.

Labeled By-products  

Dog foods should have properly labeled meat meals and by-products. These ingredients can be nutritious and valuable supplemental protein sources. However, they must come from trusted sources with recognizable ingredients. For example, look for by-products listed as “chicken meal” and not “poultry meal.”

Avoid Artificial Flavors, Colors, and Additives  

Some commercial dog foods contain unnecessary dyes, flavors, and additives. These artificial ingredients can trigger food allergies. Your dog doesn’t notice food color, so colors and dyes are best avoided. And manufacturers that add artificial flavoring should just concentrate on improving their recipes.

Hypoallergenic Dog Food

The best low-sodium dog food addresses your dog’s health needs. For example, if your dog is allergic to beef or chicken, you need a low-sodium dog food that doesn’t contain these ingredients. Alternatively, if your dog suffers from bone diseases, you need a low-sodium food containing chondroitin or glucosamine.

Here are the two types of hypoallergenic dog foods:

Limited Ingredient Dog Foods

Limited ingredient recipes contain fewer ingredients for optimal health. Most limited ingredient diets have carefully selected protein and carbohydrate sources, which helps narrow down your dog’s exposure to dietary allergens. Raw food is a great hypoallergenic option for dogs on a low-sodium diet. It has limited ingredients and is completely free of additives.

Always check the dog food label to see what’s in it. There can be “hidden” ingredients that are potential problems for dogs on a low sodium diet.

Novel Ingredient Dog Foods

Novel ingredients are ideal for dogs on a low-sodium diet. These diets use rare ingredients that your dog hasn’t eaten before and prevent common allergies. Novel diets feature lamb, rabbit, venison, kangaroo, hydrolyzed salmon, fish, or duck.

Health Conditions That Require Low-Sodium Dog Foods

Heart Disease 

Dogs with a high risk of developing congestive heart failure may benefit from reduced sodium in their diets. Excess salt can cause your dog’s body to retain water. This extra liquid puts pressure on the heart and other organs like the lungs and kidneys. Over time, the added stressors can make dogs very sick and cause death.

Kidney Disease

Kidneys help eliminate body waste and filter out sodium and other minerals. If your dog has kidney disease or renal failure, its body may not be able to remove extra sodium. As with heart disease, this condition can cause water retention and negatively impacts your dog’s health.

Liver Disease

The liver is another waste removal organ in the body. It helps remove harmful toxins from the blood and supports normal body function. When dogs have liver disease or failure, they can become very sick. A low-sodium diet can help manage the effects of liver disease.

Salt Toxicity

Usually, if a dog eats something salty, it’ll take care of it by having more water. But sometimes, dogs can’t get enough water to dilute the sodium intake. When that happens, they suffer from salt toxicity or hypernatremia. This condition can be life-threatening, so you’ll need to consult with your vet immediately. After emergency care, the vet will recommend a low-sodium diet.

Ascites

A dog with ascites may benefit from a low-sodium diet. Ascites are a fluid buildup in the abdominal cavity. If severe, this condition may be painful. The problem may keep your dog from moving around comfortably. Other ascites symptoms include lethargy, breathing difficulties, and appetite loss.

Benefits of A Low-Sodium Diet                  

Helps Reduce Blood Pressure

A low-sodium diet may help reduce blood pressure. Transitioning to a low-sodium diet can lead to significant changes in blood pressure, especially in dogs with elevated levels.

May Improve Diet Quality

Many unhealthy dog foods are extremely high in sodium, fats, and calories. You should never buy commercial dog foods that are high in salt. Frequent consumption of high-sodium foods can lead to health conditions such as obesity, diabetes, and heart disease.

On a low-sodium diet, high-salt foods like dog treats and table scraps are off-limits. This may improve your dog’s diet quality.

Prevents Heart Disease

By managing your dog’s high blood pressure, you relieve the pressure and potential damage to his heart. This also reduces the chance of a heart attack.

Prevents Metabolic Syndrome

Metabolic syndrome refers to a group of health conditions that raise the risk of heart disease. Low-sodium dog foods may help prevent metabolic syndrome.

Prevent Congestive Heart Failure

When a dog’s heart pumps harder to push blood through its blood vessels, it can lead to congestive heart failure.

Prevents Chronic Kidney Disease

A high-sodium diet can cause the blood vessels in the kidneys to become weak and narrow, which can lead to chronic kidney disease.

Prevents Stroke

The reduction in dietary sodium intake can help reduce the risk of stroke.

Prevent a Brain Aneurysm

When the blood pressure remains high, it can weaken the blood vessels in the brain, causing a brain aneurysm. A Low-sodium diet can prevent your dog from facing life-threatening consequences. 

Promotes Vision Health

Low-salt, natural foods like carrots can help prevent vision loss in dogs.

How Much Sodium Should Dogs Have a Day?

According to the Board of Agriculture and Natural Resources, healthy dogs weighing around 33 pounds need to consume up to 100 mg of sodium per day. On the other hand, other scientific researchers suggest that adult dogs should consume up to 0.07% sodium per day in dry food.

Lots of commercial dog foods exceed the recommended salt requirement. You should consult your vet about how you should adjust the sodium intake depending on the size of your pup. Dogs with health conditions may need low sodium dog foods, and your veterinarian can recommend the proper sodium amount.

What is Salt Poisoning?

Dogs have a low tolerance to salt and can only consume a small amount of sodium in their diet. You may need to reduce sodium levels for dogs with special dietary needs or problems with their liver, kidney, and heart.

Always take note of the sodium content when choosing a food for your dog. If you choose a dog food with high sodium content, your dog can be at risk of a sodium overdose, which can cause your dog serious discomfort and lead to a range of health problems.

While some salt is essential for health, too much can lead to salt poisoning. If your dog consumes too much salt, the cells in the body will release fluid to even out sodium levels in the blood, causing neurological symptoms like headache, dizziness, and seizures.

Salt poisoning or hypernatremia is dangerous, especially if your dog doesn’t have access to fresh water to rehydrate. Many symptoms accompany hypernatremia that can be distressing for your dog.

Symptoms of Salt Poisoning in Dogs

Salt poisoning signs can appear straight away or over a few days. The most common signs and symptoms of salt poisoning include:  

  • Lowered appetite
  • Coma
  • Confusion
  • Convulsions
  • Death
  • Extreme thirst and urination
  • Limping
  • Fluid buildup
  • Headache
  • High fever
  • Increased heart rate (tachycardia)
  • Lack of energy
  • Seizures
  • Stomach pains  
  • Muscle spasms
  • Nausea
  • Respiratory distress
  • Tongue swelling
  • Vomiting
  • Walking like intoxicated
  • Watery diarrhea
  • Weakness

Causes of Salt Poisoning in Dogs

Excessive salt in your dog’s bloodstream can cause sodium poisoning. These are some of the ways your pet can get sodium poisoning:

  • Drinking water from a frozen water source, broken automatic water fountain, or the ocean
  • Consuming household items such as play dough, paintballs, rock salt, soy sauce, and table salt

Diagnosis of Salt Poisoning in Dogs

A thorough physical examination includes checking your dog’s pulse rate, reflexes, weight, height, and blood pressure. You’ll need to take your dog’s medical records to the local vet. These include your pet’s vaccination records, illness, and injury information. You also need to describe any abnormal behavior or appetite changes. List the symptoms you have seen and when they started.

The tests your vet will need to perform are complete blood count, blood chemistry, and a urinalysis to check your pet’s sodium level. Your vet may also recommend a thorough cardiac examination. These include an electrocardiogram to measure the electrical impulses in your dog’s heart, radiographs, MRI, CT scan, and ultrasound to check the extent of the damage to your dog’s lungs, brain, and heart.

Treatment of Salt Poisoning in Dogs

Your dog may need oxygen, IV fluid, and electrolyte therapy to manage salt poisoning symptoms like dehydration. Vets recommend a gradual sodium reduction regime because a sudden change in sodium levels in a dog’s body can cause a heart attack or cerebral edema. It can take days to bring the sodium levels down to an optimal range. If cerebral edema is already present, your vet may prescribe medication such as mannitol or dexamethasone to reduce the inflammation.

Recovery of Salt Poisoning in Dogs

Your veterinarian may suggest a diet low in sodium to control the sodium levels in your dog’s bloodstream. You may need to go for follow-up tests and recheck sodium levels. If there is no sign of salt poisoning, your dog is good if there is no brain, heart, or liver damage. Be sure to follow your vet’s instructions and take your dog for annual check-ups.

Foods to Avoid For Dogs On A Low-Sodium Diet

  • Fatty foods (meat fat, cream)
  • Pickled Foods
  • Bread
  • Pizza
  • Condiments (Soy sauce, ketchup, BBQ sauce)
  • Deli meats (ham, salami, hot dogs, sausage, hot dogs, bacon)
  • Cheese
  • Processed foods
  • Canned vegetables
  • Snacks (potato chips, crackers, popcorn)
  • Commercial broths and soups
  • Dog biscuits and treats

Added Foods to Make Your Dog’s Meal Taste Better

If your dog refuses to eat, try adding one of these low-sodium foods:

  • Pasta (no sauces or flavorings)
  • Honey
  • Maple syrup
  • Rice (plain white or brown rice)
  • Low-sodium cheese
  • Lean, cooked meats (turkey, chicken, beef, or fish)
  • Homemade soup without salt
  • Low-salt breakfast cereal
  • Fresh vegetables and fruits (such as green beans, carrots, apple, orange, and banana)
  • Cooked eggs

Frequently Asked Questions

How can I lower my dog’s sodium level?

Your vet will recommend skipping the snacks and sticking to a low-sodium diet, which may vary from moderate to greater salt reduction. Some dogs that have heart disease may even need to restrict sodium content to 0.1 percent. Before choosing low-sodium food, consult with your vet about a recommended level.

Are there signs that my dog is consuming too much sodium?

The most common signs are excessive thirst and urination. Your dog will need to drink water to get rid of the excess sodium. If you’re concerned, your vet can do a urine test to check if their sodium level is too high.

What are the risks of excessive sodium intake?

Excessive sodium intake may increase blood pressure and aggravate the symptoms of heart disease. 

How much sodium do adult dogs need?

The Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO) recommends that commercial dog foods contain at least 0.3% sodium for optimal growth and development.

What are the dietary sources of sodium?

Meat, fish, dairy products, poultry, and eggs are good sources of sodium. Some manufacturers also include salt to heighten flavors in commercial pet foods. If your dog has to be on a low-sodium diet, you may want to avoid additional salt sources.

Does salt intake make dogs thirsty?

Yes. Eating too much salt can make dogs thirsty and lead to sodium ion poisoning.

Does high-sodium dog food cause seizures?

Yes. Excess sodium intake can be hazardous to dogs. It can trigger seizures in dogs with a seizure disorder.

Does high-sodium dog food cause diarrhea?

Yes. High-sodium dog food can cause nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea.

How much salt is toxic?

Fatal salt overdoses are rare, as they require consuming amounts of salt nearing 0.2–0.5 grams per pound (0.5–1 gram per kg) of body weight, amounting to 35–70 grams of salt (2–4 tablespoons) for a person weighing 154 pounds (70 kg).

How do you flush salt out of your dog’s body?

Provide clean water to help flush sodium from your dog’s kidneys. Staying hydrated will also help them feel less bloated.

Can excess salt affect my dog’s brain?

High levels of dietary salt can chemically alter a protein called tau. This change is called phosphorylation and can cause tau to clump together in your dog’s brain.

Is sodium good for dogs?

Sodium is an essential mineral for dogs, but excessive sodium is poisonous. Optimal sodium levels in the body help maintain the cellular environment and prevent cell degeneration. Additionally, sodium supports healthy nerve and muscle cell function.

When do vets recommend a low-sodium diet?

Vets might recommend decreasing sodium intake if your dog has kidney, liver, or heart disease. A low sodium diet will help lower high blood pressure and body fluid accumulation.

Is cheese high in sodium?

Some dairy foods like cottage cheese and other processed cheeses can be high in sodium. They can contain up to 450 mg of sodium per ounce.

Are sweet potatoes high in sodium?

No. Sweet potatoes are naturally low in sodium. If your dog needs a low-sodium diet, you can choose food products with sweet potatoes as the main carbohydrate source.          

Does canned tuna have high sodium content?

Yes. Canned tuna is high in sodium, making it unsafe for dogs on a low-sodium diet.

Are Bananas high in sodium?

No. Bananas are low in sodium, making them a great snack for dogs.

Can I add salt to homemade dog food?

No. salt should be limited in homemade dog food, especially if your dog is on a low-sodium diet.

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