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Best Dog Food for Maltese Dogs

Karan French

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Karan French
Karan French

Karan French

Senior Researcher

Karan is a senior researcher at the Dog Food Advisor, working closely with our in-house pet nutritionist, Laura Ward, to give pet parents all the information they need to find the best food for their dog.

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Updated: June 19, 2024

Verified by Laura Ward

Laura Ward

Laura Ward

Pet Nutritionist

Laura studied BSc (Hons) Animal Science with an accreditation in Nutrition at the University of Nottingham, before working for eight years in the pet food and nutrition industry.

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Laura Ward

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What’s the best dog food for Maltese Dogs?

Maltese are charming and playful dogs that require a high-quality and nutritious diet to support their overall health.

When choosing a dog food for your Maltese, look for one which contains real animal-based protein sources as the main ingredients. Chickenbeeffish, or lamb are excellent protein options.

Maltese are a small toy breed, so select a dog food with kibble that is appropriate for their mouth size. This helps with chewing and digestion.

To avoid your Maltese gaining weight, it’s important to control their calorie intake. Opt for a dog food that is formulated to meet the energy needs of a moderately active dog, and be mindful of portion sizes.

Look for dog food that includes sources of omega-3 fatty acids, such as fish oil or flaxseed. These fatty acids can promote healthy skin, a shiny coat, and support overall well-being.

Remember, if you have any specific concerns or questions about your Maltese diet, seek advice from your veterinarian.

Below, you can read our recommendations of the best dog food for Maltese Dogs.

You’ll also learn the answer to each of the most frequently asked questions we get about Maltese Dogs.

The Dog Food Advisor - Editor's choice

Best Dog Food for Maltese Dogs July 2024

Here are The Dog Food Advisor's best dog food brands for Maltese Dogs for July 2024.

  • 1. Diamond

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    Diamond Naturals Small Breed Adult Chicken & Rice is one of 13 dry recipes included in our review of the Diamonds Natural product line.

    Diamond Naturals Small Breed Adult Chicken & Rice derives the bulk of its meat protein from chicken. Dry matter label analysis reveals the recipe contains 30% protein, 17.8% fat and 44.2% estimated carbs… resulting in a fat-to-protein ratio of about 59%.

    Cage-free chicken for great taste and nutrition, small, crunchy kibble is easy for small mouths to chew and also helps clean teeth. Balanced nutrients necessary for small breed dogs and enhanced with superfoods and guaranteed probiotics.

    Read our review of the full Diamond Naturals Dog Food (Dry) range here

    Main Ingredients Chicken, chicken meal, cracked pearled barley, ground white rice, grain sorghum
    Type Grain-Inclusive
    Protein Percentage 30%
    AAFCO Standards Adult Maintenance
    Best For Dogs

    Sample buyer review...

    "I have only given my two boys Diamond food from puppy to adult. I have never had an issue with tummy upset or anything. They love the food. Both are happy and healthy. I will continue to feed them Diamond Naturals."

    Read more buyer reviews at DiamondPet.com
  • 2. Merrick

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    Merrick Lil’Plates Grain-Free Real Texas Beef & Sweet Potato Recipe is one of 8 dry recipes included in our review of the Lil’Plates product line.

    This formula derives the bulk of its meat protein from beef. Dry matter label analysis reveals the recipe contains 36% protein, 16.9% fat and 39.2% estimated carbs… resulting in a fat-to-protein ratio of about 47%.

    Merrick Lil’ Plates Real Texas Beef and Sweet Potatoes dry dog food caters for the big appetites and nutritional needs of small breeds. This grain free recipe features real, whole pieces of freeze-dried raw beef for enhanced nutritional benefits and fresh taste.

    Read our review of the full Merrick Lil’ Plates Dog Food (Dry) range here

    Main Ingredients Deboned beef, pork meal, salmon meal, sweet potatoes, potatoes
    Type Grain-Free
    Protein Percentage 36%
    AAFCO Standards Adult Maintenance
    Best For Dogs

    Sample buyer review...

    "Have been using Merrick’s since 2013, and my dogs love it and eat with no encouragement or me having to stand over them and watch."

    Read more buyer reviews at MerrickPetCare.com
  • 3. The Honest Kitchen

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    The Honest Kitchen Dehydrated Gourmet Grains Chicken & Duck is one of 8 dehydrated recipes included in our review of the The Honest Kitchen dehydrated product line.

    The Honest Kitchen Dehyarated Gourmet Grains Chicken & Duck derives the bulk of its meat protein from chicken. Dry matter label analysis reveals the recipe contains 32.8% protein, 17.5% fat and 41.7% estimated carbs… resulting in a fat-to-protein ratio of about 53%.

    This Gourmet Grain recipe is made from ingredients you’d recognize in your own kitchen, like free range chicken, cage free duck, organic oats and quinoa—all dehydrated to retain nutrients and taste. Perfect for picky eaters, we add a big burst of flavorful bone broth and leave out the potatoes, peas, lentils, corn, wheat and soy. Just add warm water and wait three minutes for a tasty, homemade meal that you and your pets will love!

    Read our review of the full Honest Kitchen Dog Food (Dehydrated) range here

    Main Ingredients Dehydrated chicken, organic barley, organic oats, flaxseed, dehydrated eggs
    Type Grain-Inclusive
    Protein Percentage 32.8%
    AAFCO Standards All Life Stages
    Best For Puppies and Dogs

    Sample buyer review...

    "Our dog just loves his food and goes crazy at meal time! The food came quickly and in an easily stored box. It smells fresh and comes in a variety of flavors. We tend to switch flavors every time he finishes a box. Plus, it’s so lightweight it’s great for backpacking!"

    Read more buyer reviews at TheHonestKitchen.com
  • 4. JustFoodForDogs

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    JustFoodForDogs Balanced Remedy is one of 9 fresh recipes included in our review of the JustFoodForDogs Fresh product line.

    JustFoodForDogs Balanced Remedy derives the bulk of its meat protein from turkey. Dry matter label analysis reveals the recipe contains 16.7% protein, 13.3% fat and 62% estimated carbs… resulting in a fat-to-protein ratio of about 80%.

    A balanced remedy diet is formulated to support your dog’s digestive health, with just a single protein source, single starch source, and low-fat levels. Hand-prepare diet in open kitchens using ground turkey breast, long-grain white rice, sushi rice, sunflower oil, coconut oil, flaxseed oil, and Icelandic premium fish oil.

    Read our review of the full Just Food for Dogs (Frozen Fresh) range here

    Main Ingredients Turkey breast, long-grain white rice (enriched), sushi rice, sunflower oil, coconut oil
    Type Grain-Inclusive
    Protein Percentage 16.7%
    AAFCO Standards Adult Maintenance
    Best For Dogs

    Sample buyer review...

    "Thank God for this recipe. This is the only food my girl Gia will not walk away from, her stools are firm and solid with no diarrhea and it’s slowly healed her gut. I truly believe this diet was my last resort and I’m so happy I made the transition. I would highly recommend this recipe."

    Read more buyer reviews at JustFoodForDogs.com
  • 5. Taste Of The Wild

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    Taste Of The Wild Appalachian Valley Small Breed Canine Recipe is one of 9 dry recipes included in our review of the Taste Of The Wild Grain-Free product line.

    Taste Of The Wild Appalachian Valley Small Breed Canine Recipe derives the bulk of its meat protein from venison. Dry matter label analysis reveals the recipe contains 35.6% protein, 20% fat and 36.4% estimated carbs… resulting in a fat-to-protein ratio of about 56%.

    Highly digestible venison and small kibble size make this recipe easy on your small breed dog’s tummy and teeth. Probiotics and prebiotic fiber help support healthy digestion, while roasted venison along with lamb, egg, duck and ocean fish proteins provide recommended amino acid nutrition. Rich in protein and fat, this recipe provides the energy that active small dogs need.

    Read our review of the full Taste of the Wild Dog Food range here

    Main Ingredients Venison, lamb meal, garbanzo beans, peas, lentils
    Type Grain-Free
    Protein Percentage 35.6%
    AAFCO Standards Adult Maintenance
    Best For Dogs

    Sample buyer review...

    "My dog Remington loves his Taste of the Wild food and I love it too. I can see a huge improvement in his coat and he has completely stopped itching at his skin. We are both huge fans!!"

    Read more buyer reviews at TasteOfTheWildPetFood.com
  • 6. Blue Buffalo

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    Blue Buffalo Life Protection Formula Small Breed Adult Chicken & Brown Rice Recipe is one of 21 dry recipes included in our review of the Blue Buffalo Life Protection product line.

    Blue Buffalo Life Protection Formula Small Breed Adult Chicken & Brown Rice Recipe derives the bulk of its meat protein from chicken. Dry matter label analysis reveals the recipe contains 28.9% protein, 16.7% fat and 46.4% estimated carbs… resulting in a fat-to-protein ratio of about 58%.

    Formulated for the health and well-being of small breed dogs, BLUE Life Protection Formula is made with the finest natural ingredients enhanced with vitamins, minerals and other nutrients. Starting with delicious, high-quality chicken, it features antioxidant-rich fruits and veggies and wholesome whole grains. Formulated with a precise blend of proteins and carbohydrates, this recipe helps support the higher energy needs of smaller dogs.

    Read our review of the full Blue Buffalo Dog Food range here

    Main Ingredients Deboned chicken, chicken meal, brown rice, oatmeal, barley
    Type Grain-Inclusive
    Protein Percentage 28.9%
    AAFCO Standards Adult Maintenance
    Best For Dogs

    Sample buyer review...

    "I love that I can confidently feed this to my dog without worrying what’s in it. Some brands have a lot of junk in theirs and this brand discloses everything. We love it and so does she!"

    Read more buyer reviews at BlueBuffalo.com

Here are the most frequently asked questions we get about feeding Maltese Dogs

Maltese are a small toy breed of dog originating from Malta and well known for being a great companion dog. They are known for their friendly personalities and impressive coats. The American Kennel Club (AKC) consistently ranks Maltese within the top 38 most popular breeds in the United States.

Frequently Asked Questions

How big are Maltese?

Maltese stand between 7-9 inches tall and weigh under 7 pounds.

What kind of fur does a Maltese have?

Maltese have a distinctive long, silky, white coat which touches the floor. It requires daily gentle brushing to prevent tangles and regular baths but Maltese are low shedding.

What temperament do Maltese have?

Maltese make great companions and show the following traits:

  • Affectionate
  • Playful
  • Gentle
  • Vocal
  • Intelligent
  • Happy with other dogs and pets
  • Good with children
  • Energetic

How much exercise do Maltese need?

Maltese are playful and energetic but a play in the garden or indoors will suffice if you can’t walk them everyday. They only need occasional exercise or a short daily walk.

Which health concerns do Maltese have?

Maltese are generally a very healthy breed overall but should be screened for:

  • Dental disease
  • Heart anomalies
  • Congenital liver issues
  • Patella luxation

Final word

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