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Best Dog Foods For Akitas: Puppies, Adults & Seniors


Last Updated: May 9, 2024 | 14 min read | Leave a Comment

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Looking for the best dog food for your Akita? The Akita is a mighty and muscular dog that originates from the island of Japan. They are one of the most loyal dog breeds you can find. But for this breed to operate to their full potential, they need the right Akita fuel. And with so many kibbles out there, where exactly do you start? As dog owners ourselves, we know exactly how you feel.

So, we have scoured the market for the best dog foods just for Akitas. From puppyhood all the way up to his senior years, we have handpicked options for each life stage. We’ve made sure there is something for every Akita and owner, too. And after reading this nutritional guide, we promise you won’t leave empty-handed.

We’ve researched hundreds of dog food brands and formulas and have determined American Journey, The Farmer’s Dog, and Purina Pro to be among the best dog food for Akitas. However, there are factors to consider, including your Akita’s age and health status, so read below to determine which food is best for your dog. We have also researched exactly what nutrients Akitas need, and after reading this, you’ll be an Akita nutrition pro. So, without further ado, let’s jump in and find the best dog food for Akitas.

At A Glance: Our Favorite Foods For The Akita

Our Rating

Akita Puppy Pick

American Journey Puppy

The Farmer's Dog Food Products (3 flavors)
Our Rating

Adult Akita Pick

The Farmer’s Dog

American Journey Puppy
Our Rating

Akita Senior Pick

Purina Pro Bright Mind

Akita Puppy Nutrient Needs

Are you wondering, “What should I feed my Akita puppy?” Akitas will eventually grow into large or giant dogs. So, the number one rule when it comes to puppyhood nutrition is that you need to feed him a high-quality kibble formulated for larger puppies. His bones grow at a fast rate, and large-breed puppy food will help control his bone growth. It does this with an optimum calcium and phosphorus ratio. This lowers the chances of him developing bone diseases in later life.

The Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO) recommends that all puppies eat a protein content of at least 22%. This provides their growing bodies with the fuel they need to develop and supply energy for extra puppy fun. A sure sign of top-quality kibble is real meat protein as the first ingredient. All meat ingredients should be named, too.

Omega fatty acids are essential for healthy development and overall wellness. They will also keep his thick coat lush too. Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) and arachidonic acid (ARA) are naturally found in mothers’ milk, and they are crucial for brain and eye development. Look for ingredients such as meat meals, fish oils, plant oils, flaxseed, and eggs for his healthy fatty needs.

His developing immune system needs vitamins and minerals to grow into a robust illness-fighting machine. Fruits, vegetables, and supplements are essential in his diet. Prebiotic fibers, such as sweet potato, pumpkin, and beet pulp, keep his digestion regular. And probiotic ingredients such as dried bacillus acidophilus fermentation products promote friendly bacteria.

Adult Akita Nutrient Needs

Although an Akita will not become fully mature until around two years, you should look to switch your Akita to an adult kibble at around one year old. Again, look for a high-quality kibble that focuses on a well-balanced diet. A well-balanced diet includes high-quality protein, healthy carbohydrates, fiber, omega fatty acids, vitamins, and minerals. Some Akitas will need a little more fiber as they enter adulthood. Consider a dog food formula reinforced with natural fiber if your pup seems to strain when going to the bathroom.

Protein is still the main focus to ensure his large muscles are maintained and fueled, and his kibble should offer a minimum of 18%. Look for kibbles rich in omega fatty acids to support healthy skin and a thick coat that looks glorious.

The Akita, although he is active, loves a cheeky snack or three. So, you need to keep an eye on his food consumption because he is known to pile on the pounds quickly if you let him. If your Akita is overweight, you’ll want to consider a kibble with a lower calorie count to help drop some pounds. Keeping an Akita at a healthy weight requires a combination of the best food and regular exercise.

Senior Akita Nutrient Needs

The Akita will become a senior at around the age of eight years old. When he reaches his golden years, you need to switch your dog to a senior kibble. Two essential nutrients in his senior years are glucosamine and chondroitin, as they both support his aging joints and keep them supple. Vitamins and minerals are crucial to keeping his immunity boosted, too. There are several glucosamine-enriched dog food formulas created just for this purpose.

Seniors need less fat and energy because seniors move much less than they used to. This is particularly important for the Akita. Many vets advise that you feed senior Akitas a low-calorie or ‘light’ diet. Akitas are prone to kidney diseases in their later years, and a lighter diet will decrease the chances of him developing these issues and maintaining a healthy weight.

Best Dog Foods For Akita Puppies

Akita Puppies Eating Dog Foods
Akita Puppies have a rapid growth rate and need a kibble that can support their quickly growing bones.

When your Akita is young, their growth rate is rapid. Due to their larger frame, as they age, they spend quite a bit of time growing quickly as puppies. This means you’ll need a puppy food that’s engineered to support their accelerated bone development. You’ll also want to lay the building blocks to ensure your pup has a soft and silky coat by picking a formula that’s rich in Omega fatty acids. Immune health is also important, so finding a formula fortified with antioxidants is recommended. Let’s take a look at our favorite dog foods for Akita puppies.

American Journey Lamb Formula Review

  • Grain-free formula.
  • Budget-friendly.
  • No corn, wheat, soy, or by-products.
  • No artificial preservatives or flavors.
  • Real fish is the first ingredient.
  • 380 Calories per cup.
  • 30% Protein, 12% Fat, 5% Fiber.

American Journey is the newest brand on our favorites list. The brand is becoming extremely popular, and they make budget-friendly but high-quality kibbles. This product has a high protein content, and it lists deboned lamb, chicken meal, and turkey meal as the first three ingredients. This provides the growing power and omega fats he needs for healthy development and organ function.

This is a grain-free option, and instead, it lists sweet potatoes and chickpeas for his energy and fiber needs. Probiotic ingredients such as dried fermentation products and beet pulp are also listed to assist in regular digestion. This kibble is fortified with vitamins and minerals, too. Menhaden meal and salmon oil provide the all-important DHA and glucosamine for his large joints.

We love that this recipe is budget-friendly, and most pups love the taste.

Wellness Core Large Breed Puppy Review

Wellness Core Large Breed Adult
  • Grain-free formula.
  • Fortified with Omega fatty acids.
  • DHA for brain development.
  • Probiotics for digestive health.
  • Superfoods provide antioxidants.
  • 387 calories per cup.
  • 35% Protein, 14% Fat, 5.5% Fiber.

Wellness Core is a high-protein kibble that offers the second-highest protein option on this list. The first two ingredients are deboned chicken and chicken meal, with turkey meal also present. The meal ingredients also provide omega threes and healthy fats, which he needs for healthy development, and a glossy Akita coat.

Fruits and veggies such as spinach, banana, broccoli, and carrots provide vitamins and minerals. And extra vitamins and minerals are added to the mix for an extra immunity boost. In addition to the veggies, prebiotic fiber, and probiotic ingredients keep his digestive tract regular and healthy.  This is a grain-free kibble, and lentils, peas, and potatoes provide the energy and carbohydrates.

We love that each kibble piece is coated in probiotic ingredients to promote friendly bacteria in his gastrointestinal tract.

Holistic Select Large Breed Puppy Review

  • Grain-free formula.
  • Antioxidant boost for immune health.
  • Probioitics for digestive health.
  • Natural fiber.
  • Made in the United States.
  • 433 Calories per cup.
  • 25% Protein, 16% Fat, 4.5% Fiber.

This recipe offers the lowest protein content on this list, but it still exceeds the recommended allowance. Some dogs do better on a lower protein content, so this recipe is for them! Lamb meal and chicken meal are the first two ingredients, which provide various amino acids for his large muscle mass. Salmon oil provides DHA for his brain and eye function.

This is another grain-free option, and thanks to the abundance of prebiotic fiber, it falls into a high fiber category. This is ideal for those Akitas who need assistance with regular digestion and healthier stools. Exotic ingredients such as papaya, pumpkin, blueberries, cranberries, and pomegranate provide a boost of antioxidants for his developing immune system.

We love that this recipe is specifically designed for large and giant puppies. Meaning if he is a super big Akita pup, this is an excellent option for him.

Blue Buffalo Wilderness Puppy Review

Wellness Large Breed Puppy Food
  • Grain-free formula.
  • Real chicken is the #1 ingredient.
  • DHA for brain support
  • No poultry by-product meals.
  • Antioxidants fortified by real vegetables.
  • 411 Calories per cup.
  • 35% Protein, 14% Fat, 6% Fiber.

This is a premium dog food product from the Blue Buffalo catalog, and it has the highest protein content from our picks. It includes multiple types of meat protein, including real meat, organs, and cartilage. This might sound revolting to you, but your Aktia pup will love it. In addition to these ingredients, flaxseed and fish oil provide all the DHA and ARA his growing body needs.

Vitamin and mineral supplements are added to the kibble. It’s also made with real fruits and veggies. The list includes blueberries, cranberries, carrots, and sweet potatoes. Each of these provides antioxidants for healthy skin and overall health. Taurine is listed for his heart health, and probiotic ingredients help him to digest everything well and allow him to absorb all the goodness that he eats.

We love that this recipe has leading market levels of protein. And it is the best option for those Akitas who crave a big meaty taste.

Instinct Raw Large Breed Puppy Review

Orijen Large Breed Puppy Food
  • Contains freeze-dried raw ingredients.
  • Cage-free chicken.
  • A mix of poultry, fish, and other meat.
  • Grain-free formula.
  • Made in the United States.
  • 485 Calories per cup.
  • 33.5% Protein, 18.5% Fat, 5% Fiber.

This recipe doesn’t just have kibble pieces, but it also has raw meal toppers added to the mix. This product is another protein-rich recipe with eight real meat ingredients, including organs. The fat content and calorie count per cup are the highest on this list, making this an ideal choice for those super bouncy or growing Akitas.

Egg products, fish meal, and salmon oil provide the all-important DHA and ARA nutrients for his brain and eye development. Pumpkin seeds, cranberries, montmorillonite clay, and dried kelp are rich in antioxidants to ensure that he can fight illness. Dried fermented products provide probiotics, and it is free from grains, potatoes, corn, wheat, and soy for sensitive stomachs.

We love that this recipe has added raw pieces. So, it provides extra texture, extra nutrients, and a bigger taste.

Best Dog Foods For Adult Akitas

Adult Brindle Akita on Grass Outside
Adult Akitas will have a healthy appetite and can be expensive to feed.

Once your pup grows out of their puppy stage, it’s time to graduate to an adult kibble. This is typically the dog food your pup will eat until their senior years, provided it agrees with their stomachs. Because the Akita is a large dog, you’ll be spending a little more to keep up with their food bill. This is where it becomes important to balance nutrition quality with a stricter budget. Let’s take a look at our favorite foods for adult Akitas at every price point.

The Farmer's Dog

  • Cooked fresh, flash-frozen, and shipped to you.
  • Personalized meal plans.
  • 4 healthy, vet-designed options: beef, chicken, turkey, or pork.
  • Made with human-grade ingredients (no fillers or preservatives).
  • Manufactured in the United States.
  • Calories and nutritional values vary based on recipe.

The Farmer’s Dog is one of the fastest-growing makers of fresh dog food, and there are many reasons dog owners love it! With four recipes to choose from, all featuring whole meat as the first ingredient, followed closely by fresh vegetables, your dog will be howling for more at every meal and stay at a healthy weight.

Whether chicken, beef, turkey, or pork, each recipe is packed with immunity-boosting vitamins, minerals, and essential fatty acids. Every grain-free mix is free of corn, wheat, and soy, common sensitivities among some canines.

We love that this recipe is made from fresh meats and produce and is cooked in a USDA-certified kitchen in the United States. It doesn’t hurt that it delivers right to your door every few weeks either, removing dog food shopping from your to-do list.

American Journey Large Breed Adult Review

Blue Buffalo Wilderness Large Breed
  • Grain-free recipe.
  • Made with nutritious fruits and vegetables.
  • High-protein formula.
  • DHA for brain development.
  • Glucosamine boost for larger breeds.
  • 370 Calories per cup.
  • 30% Protein, 12% Fat, 5% Fiber.

If your Akita did well on the American Journey recipe as a pup, he should do well on this as an adult, too. Deboned salmon and turkey meal are the first two ingredients, and fish meal is also present. Meaning that his large muscle mass is well cared for, as his coat and overall health. Thanks to the protein and omega fats.

This recipe is nutrient-dense, thanks to blueberries, carrots, and dried kelp. And it lists vitamin and mineral supplements, too, for an extra immunity boost. This recipe is grain-free, and peas, chickpeas, and sweet potatoes provide the energy he needs to fuel his large body. This recipe is high in glucosamine and chondroitin for his large joints, too.

We love that this recipe is fish-based, meaning it offers an alternative flavor and plenty of omega threes for his thick Akita coat.

Wellness Core Large Breed Formula Review

  • Grain-free formula.
  • Chicken is the first ingredient.
  • Larger kibble size for big dogs.
  • Probioitics for gut health.
  • No corn, soy, wheat, or wheat-gluten ingredients.
  • 342 Calories per cup.
  • 34% Protein, 12% Fat, 6% Fiber.

This recipe follows from the puppy formula, meaning he should thrive on this recipe if he did as a puppy. It is from their high-protein range and offers the second-highest protein content on this list. This means lots of taste and energy for your large Akita, and deboned chicken, chicken meal, and turkey meal are the first three ingredients.

This kibble focuses on digestive health, and it is a grain-free option. And with spinach, broccoli, kale, carrots, blueberries, and apples, you can be sure his immune system will remain robust against illness. This kibble is fortified in glucosamine and chondroitin thanks to the meat meals listed, which is great for his joints.

We love that this recipe has the highest fiber content, and each kibble piece is coated in probiotics. This means that Akitas, who need extra assistance in the digestive department, are covered with this kibble.

Taste of the Wild Pacific Stream Review

Zignature Chicken Free Dog Food
  • Grain-free formula.
  • Antioxidants from real vegetables.
  • Fatty acids for skin and coat health.
  • No grain, corn, wheat, or fillers.
  • Made in the United States.
  • 360 Calories per cup.
  • 25% Protein, 15% Fat, 3% Fiber.

As one of the most well-known dog food brands, Taste of the Wild’s Pacific Stream formula is extremely popular with many dog owners. This recipe lists salmon and ocean fish meal as the first two ingredients. These are sources of high-quality protein. Sweet potatoes, Potatoes, and lentils are the primary carbohydrate and energy sources. His joint cushioning is topped up with glucosamine, and his immunity is boosted with vitamin and mineral supplements.

This recipe has the lowest fiber content on our list, an essential option for some Akitas who struggle to digest too much fiber. Thankfully, this formula still lists the dried fermented probiotic ingredients to give him an extra fibrous boost. This is a grain-free option, and it is also free of corn, wheat, and soy, which are common irritants for some dogs.

We love that this recipe is made from sustainable sources and manufactured here in the United States. It’s also a great option for Akitas with sensitive stomachs.

Orijen Dry Adult Dog Food Review

Orijen Fit and Trim
  • Grain-free formula.
  • Made from 85% animal ingredients.
  • 5-6 whole prey meats.
  • 66% fresh or raw ingredients.
  • Sourced and made in the United States.
  • 449 Calories per cup.
  • 38% Protein, 18% Fat, 4% Fiber.

Orijen is well known for making high-quality, grain-free dog foods. Their Original recipe is crafted as biologically appropriate, meaning it has an excellent balance to ensure your dog’s gut health is a primary focus. There are three different flavors, including their original blend, Regional red, and six-fish combination.

This is a grain-free option, and it doesn’t rely on plants for protein. Meaning this is by far the meatiest recipe of them all. It contains 85% quality animal ingredients, with 2/3 of them being fresh or raw. 5-6 of the ingredients are different types of prey meats that your Akita will love. Orijen isn’t the cheapest brand, though, so you should explore this option only if your budget can handle it.

We love that this recipe has the highest protein content on this list. This makes it a great option for energetic and larger Akitas.

Best Dog Foods For Senior Akitas

Senior Akita in Snow
Senior Akitas will need a glucosamine and chondroitin boost as they enter their golden years.

Once your Akita reaches around 7 years of age, their golden years start. Because this breed is both highly active and large in size, a glucosamine lift is extremely important in their later years. This will help prevent bone and joint degradation and ensure your pup lives their later years of life pain-free. Each of our favorites below has a higher glucosamine content, with fewer calories to support your less active and aging senior Akita.

American Journey Senior Formula Review

Holistic Select Large Breed Puppy
  • Budget-friendly senior blend.
  • Antioxidants boost immune health.
  • Glucosamine and chondroitin boost.
  • No wheat, corn, soy, or poultry by-products.
  • No artificial preservatives or colors.
  • 319 Calories per cup.
  • 25% Protein, 11% Fat, 7% Fiber.

Finally, we finish up the American Journey products with the senior version. So, you guessed it, if he did well on this as a pup and adult, he should do well on this as a senior. This is not specifically designed for large dogs, but it ticks all the boxes of a larger breed kibble. The protein content is the joint highest on this list, making it an excellent option for those seniors with energy still.

It offers a trio of proteins, meaning he gets a variety of amino acids and nutrients. This recipe is grain-inclusive, and it relies on gentle brown rice as the primary carbohydrate. Probiotics are listed, which is excellent for his aging stomach, and pumpkin is a gentle prebiotic, too. Blueberries and marine microalgae are mineral-rich and will keep his immunity fighting fit. Coconut oil keeps his skin and coat nourished.

We love that this recipe offers one of the leading protein content percentages on our list. Making this an excellent option for larger Akitas or those who are still active.

Nutro Wholesome Large Breed Senior Review

  • Non-GMO ingredients.
  • Farm-raised chicken.
  • Contains natural fiber.
  • Natural sources of glucosamine.
  • Made in the United States.
  • 306 Calories per cup.
  • 22% Protein, 11% Fat, 4% Fiber.

This Nutro recipe is a new one to this list, but this is because it offers many older Akitas what they need. It has a lower protein content and lowers fats and calorie count. Chicken and chicken meal are the first two ingredients, and they are farm-raised for the ethical consumers out there. This is a grain-inclusive recipe, and it uses rice and barley.

This recipe contains natural sources of glucosamine and chondroitin for his large joints. Vitamin and mineral supplements supply his immune system with the nutrients to stay healthy. All of the ingredients are non-GMO, and this recipe is free from corn, wheat, and soy, so it is gentle for those with sensitivities.

We love that this recipe offers the lowest calorie count and low protein content. This makes this an ideal option for those Akitas who are less active.

Blue Buffalo Senior Formula Review

Science Diet Large Breed Senior
  • Budget-friendly grain-inclusive formula.
  • Brown rice supplies slow-burning carbohydrates.
  • Glucosamine boost for aging Akitas.
  • Antioxidants for immune system health.
  • L-Carnitine for muscle retention.
  • 344 Calories per cup.
  • 20% Protein, 10% Fat, 7% Fiber.

This is a different Blue Buffalo product from the previous two because, in his senior years, he needs much less protein. Here, this recipe offers the least protein, which makes it gentle for his system to digest. Deboned chicken is the primary meat protein, and it is the first ingredient. Chicken meal is a natural source of glucosamine, and it adds extra taste, too.

L-carnitine supports his metabolism, which prevents him from putting on weight. Other vitamin and mineral supplements, such as taurine, for his heart health. Omega fatty acids will keep his skin as supple as possible. Salmon meal and flaxseed will keep his coat looking shiny. This recipe is fortified with probiotic ingredients to support the friendly bacteria in his gut.

We love that this recipe offers LifeSource Bits in addition to the kibble pieces. These bits are full of superfoods and nutrients to achieve his best senior health.

Purina Pro Bright Mind Review

American Journey Puppy
  • Made specifically for pups over 7 years old.
  • Glucosamine for joint health.
  • Budget-friendly formula.
  • Fortified with probiotics for gut health.
  • Perfect transition for Akitas that eat Purina brand food.
  • 423 Calories per cup.
  • 29% Protein, 14% Fat, 3% Fiber.

Purina is well known for producing high-quality kibbles at a budget-friendly price. Purina Pro’s Bright Mind formula is no exception. This formula has additional glucosamine for joint health, EPA, and a reduced calorie count compared to other brands. It also has natural botanical oils designed to keep your pup’s mind sharp.

This formula is made for dogs 7 years and older. It is also fortified with probiotics to keep your aging pup’s digestive system functioning smoothly. As with other Purina Formulas, this food is made with real chicken as the first ingredient. If your pup has already been eating a Purina pro brand food during adulthood, this food will be an easy transition for your aging pup.

We love that this recipe has leading levels of glucosamine and chondroitin, making it a fantastic option for older Akitas.

Hill's Science Diet Large Breed Senior Review

  • Veterinary endorsed brand.
  • Budget-friendly formula.
  • Glucosamine and chondroitin boost.
  • Made from natural ingredients.
  • Made in the United States.
  • 353 Calories per cup.
  • 15.5% Protein, 10.5% Fat, 4% Fiber.

Don’t let the lower protein content fool you. This can be ideal for Akitas who struggle to digest too much meat in their senior years. L-carnitine is also listed to keep him lean. Chicken meal is still the first ingredient, and this also provides a natural source of glucosamine for his aging joints. This also includes omega fatty acids, as do plant oils and flaxseed.

His coat is well cared for thanks to the fats and ingredients such as flaxseed, vitamin E, folic acid, and biotin. This recipe is full of vitamins and minerals. It’s made with apples, broccoli, carrots, and cranberries, adding a boost to his immunity too. Taurine is listed for his heart health. This is a grain-inclusive diet that relies on barley, rice, and wheat, which many senior dogs do well on.

We love that this recipe is based on the needs of senior dogs, according to science. So you can rest assured that your aging Akita is well cared for with this recipe.

Final Thoughts

By now, you’ve learned everything you need to know about Akita nutrition. During every stage of his life, you have the knowledge to make sure that he gets the very best food. From his development puppy stage all the way up to his golden years. Including those times when he has put on too much chunk.

By picking from our recommendations above, you have the very best dog foods for Akitas at your fingertips. And by selecting one of these options, you can save yourself bundles of time. And more importantly, you can be sure that you are making the right choice for your Akitas nutrition, health, and happiness.

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The information provided through this website should not be used to diagnose or treat a health problem or disease; it is not intended to offer any legal opinion or advice or a substitute for professional safety advice or professional care. Please consult your health care provider, attorney, or product manual for professional advice. Products and services reviewed are provided by third parties; we are not responsible in any way for them, nor do we guarantee their functionality, utility, safety, or reliability. Our content is for educational purposes only.

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