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Best Dog Foods For Akitas: Puppies, Adults & Seniors

Trying to find the best dog food for your Akita puppy, adult or senior? We review our favorites by comparing cost, ingredients, food quality, and more!

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Last Updated: January 26, 2021 | 14 min read

Adult Akita Waiting For Dog Food

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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 five kibbles 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 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 perfect dog food for your fluffy friend.

At a Glance: Our Favorite Foods for the Akita

American Journey Grain Free Puppy Food
Our Rating

Akita Puppy Pick

American Journey Puppy

View at Chewy.com
Taste of the Wild Pacific Stream Adult
Our Rating

Adult Akita Pick

Taste of the Wild

View at Chewy.com
Purina Pro Senior Large Breed
Our Rating

Akita Senior Pick

Purina Pro Senior

View at Chewy.com

Note: Clicking the above links will take you to Chewy.com, where you can get additional product information and customer reviews. If you make a purchase, we earn a commission at no additional cost to you.

Akita Puppy Nutrient Needs

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 (AFFCO) recommends that all puppies eat a protein content of at least 22%. This provides their growing bodies with the fuel it needs to develop and supply energy for extra puppy fun. A sure sign of a 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 keep his skin and thick coat looking 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.

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 fewer fats 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. Akita’s are prone to kidney diseases in their later years, and a lighter diet will decrease the chances of him developing these issues.


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

Grain Free Puppy Food American Journey
  • 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.
View at Chewy.com

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 potato 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 in 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

Large Breeed Wellness Core
  • 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.
View at Chewy.com

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

Holistic Select Large Breed Puppy
  • 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.
View at Chewy.com

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

Blue Buffalo Large Breed Puppy Food Wilderness
  • 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.
View at Chewy.com

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 this 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 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 big meaty taste.


Instinct Raw Large Breed Puppy

Instinct Large Breed Puppy
  • 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.
View at Chewy.com

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 product, 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.


American Journey Large Breed Adult

American Journey Large Breed Food
  • 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.
View at Chewy.com

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

Wellness Core Large Breed Adult
  • 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.
View at Chewy.com

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. Meaning that Akitas, who need extra assistance in the digestive department, are covered with this kibble.


Taste of the Wild Pacific Stream

Taste of the Wild Pacific Stream 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.
View at Chewy.com

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 source. 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

Orijen Original Adult Food
  • 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.
View at Amazon.com

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.


Purina Pro Giant Breed Formula

Purina Pro New Giant Breed Dog Food
  • Budget-friendly formula.
  • Glucosamine for joint support.
  • Prebiotic fiber supports digestive health.
  • Made for larger Akitas over 100 pounds.
  • Made in the United States.
  • 370 Calories per cup.
  • 26% Protein, 12% Fat, 4.5% Fiber.
View at Chewy.com

This recipe is made with giant breeds over 100 pounds in mind, meaning it is built for large Akitas. This recipe is suitable for all Akitas despite their weight. The first ingredient is chicken, and fish meal and egg also provide protein for his large muscle mass. As well as DHA for his brain function. Purina states that this recipe offers the optimum protein to fat ratio for larger dogs.

This is a grain inclusive product that uses rice, corn, and oatmeal. It lists taurine, which will support his cardiac health and other vitamins and minerals for his overall wellness. In addition to the fish oils and fish meals, biotin and folic acid nourish his gorgeous coat from the inside out. Purina does an excellent job creating a budget-friendly food that’s healthier than their Purina one food line.

We love that this recipe is specifically designed for giant dog breeds who weigh over 100 pounds plus.


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

American Journey Grain Free Active Life
  • 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.
View at Chewy.com

Finally, we finish 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

Nutro Large Breed Senior Food
  • 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.
View at Chewy.com

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. Which makes this an ideal option for those Akitas who are less active.


Blue Buffalo Senior Formula

Blue Buffalo Senior Large Breed Formula
  • 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.
View at Chewy.com

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 Large Breed Senior

Purina Pro Senior Large Breed
  • 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.
  • 451 Calories per cup.
  • 29% Protein, 14% Fat, 5% Fiber.
View at Chewy.com

Purina is well known for producing hiqh quality kibbles at a budget-friendly price. Purina Pro’s senior formula is no exception. This formula has additional glucosamine for joint health, 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 includes L-Carnitine which aids in muscle retention during your Akita’s senior years. This formula 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

Science Diet Large Breed Senior
  • 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.
View at Chewy.com

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 add 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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