Itchy red skin and a funky smell - those are the classic signs that your dog is struggling with a yeast infection. You hate seeing your fur child suffer, so you’re looking for anti-yeast dog food. Is that the same thing as yeast-free dog food? Is a diet change alone enough to tackle your dog’s yeast problem?
Keep reading for the answers to those questions along with our top picks for the best anti-yeast dog food, treats, shampoo, and ear cleaner.
Our Top Picks
What is a Yeast Infection?
Also called yeast dermatitis or Malassezia dermatitis, yeast infections are an overgrowth of a fungus that is normally on your dog’s skin. On a healthy dog, yeast and bacteria balance each other out on your pup’s skin. Sometimes, though, something happens to cause the yeast, bacteria, or both to grow out of control and cause an infection.
Symptoms of a yeast infection include:
The most common causes of yeast infections include allergies, immune system problems, and diabetes, so it’s important to take your dog to the vet if they have a yeast infection.
Managing a yeast infection involves a multi-pronged approach that usually includes some combination of medication, diet change, and frequent baths with special shampoo.
When you’re searching for yeast-free dog food, you actually want high-protein, low-carb food, preferably one that doesn’t include common allergens like beef, chicken, lamb, dairy, eggs, soy, and gluten.
The best way to do that is to get away from kibble, but that doesn’t have to mean feeding your dog raw or homecooked meals. Here are our top picks for the best anti-yeast dog food.
1. Stella & Chewy's Freeze-Dried Raw Dinner Patties
First 5 Ingredients: Rabbit with ground bone, olive oil, pumpkin seed, potassium chloride, organic cranberries.
Customer Reviews: Apart from the occasional complaint about a stale product, most people love this food and say even the pickiest pups will eat it.
Our Take: For low-allergen, low-carb, easy-to-feed food with the benefits of a raw diet, you can’t go wrong with Stella & Chewy’s.
2. Only Natural Pet MaxMeat Holistic Grain-Free Air Dried Dry Dog Food
First 5 Ingredients: Lamb, cod, lamb liver, lamb heart, lamb kidney
Customer Reviews: Occasionally people get a batch that’s completely crumbled, but the main complaint is about the price. Price aside, dogs love this as a food, topper, or treat.
Our Take: If you worry about the safety of freeze-dried raw food and the carbs in kibble, this product is a great choice that most dogs love. It’s also more affordable than the other air-dried food on our list.
3. ZIWI Peak Air-Dried Dog Food
First 5 Ingredients: Venison, venison tripe, venison heart, venison lung, venison liver
Customer Reviews: While a few dogs didn’t like the taste, and a few people complained about the price, most customers had nothing but good things to say about this food.
Our Take: Ziwi Peak is one of the best brands of dry dog food available. Most dogs love the taste, and you’ll love the quality of the ingredients.
4. Nulo Freeze Dried Raw Dog Food
First 5 Ingredients: Duck, duck necks, duck heart, duck wings, duck liver
Customer Reviews: The most common complaints were about the price and the product occasionally being crushed and arriving as dust rather than nuggets. Most dogs love and thrive on this food.
Our Take: This food is an excellent choice that many dogs will do well on.
5. Acana Grain Free Dry Dog Food, High Protein, Freeze-Dried Coated
First 5 Ingredients: Whole mackerel, whole herring, whole redfish, silver hake, mackerel meal
Customer Reviews: Not only do most dogs like the taste of this kibble, but multiple owners reported that their dog’s health vastly improved after switching to this food from something else. Like any food, some dogs had stomach upset or didn’t like the taste.
Our Take: If you’re looking for an anti-yeast kibble, Acana has one of the best options out there.
Anti-Yeast Dog Treats
If you’re reducing the carbs in your dog’s diet, don’t forget to change the treats, too! Some treats are very high in carbohydrates. The best anti-yeast dog treats are single-ingredient freeze-dried treats in a flavor your pup isn’t allergic to.
PureBites Freeze Dried RAW Beef Liver Treat for Dogs
Ingredients: Beef liver
Customer Reviews: Despite some reports of stale or smashed bits, the vast majority of reviewers absolutely love these treats.
Our Take: Freeze-dried dog treats are best for dogs with yeast problems, and PureBites is one of the best brands available.
The Best Anti-Yeast Dog Shampoo
While changing your dog’s diet may help reduce their yeast, you really need to tackle the yeast from the outside, also, to get real results. You should wash your dog 1-3 times per week in a special shampoo to help get the yeast overgrowth under control.
Here are some of the best anti-yeast dog shampoos.
1. PetHonesty Antibacterial & Antifungal Chlorhexidine Shampoo
Active Ingredients: Chlorhexidine (2%) and ketoconazole (1%)
Customer Reviews: While this shampoo didn’t help every dog, most owners reported relief from itchiness, redness, and odor. Most people like the scent, and many people commented about how soft their dog’s fur was after using this shampoo.
Our Take: This is an excellent shampoo that can manage many skin conditions without drying out your dog too much.
2. VetWELL Micoseb Medicated Shampoo for Dogs & Cats
Active Ingredients: 2% Miconazole Nitrate and 2% Chlorhexidine
Customer Reviews: For most dogs, that shampoo provided exceptional relief from their symptoms for cheaper than shampoos people had previously bought from the vet. Like any product, it didn’t work for every dog.
Our Take: This extra-strength medicated shampoo will work wonders for most dogs. We can’t guarantee it will help your pup, but the chances are good it will provide them with relief from their symptoms.
3. Arava Natural Medicated Dog Shampoo
Active Ingredients: No active ingredients. Contains 28 natural ingredients.
Customer Reviews: This shampoo didn’t help all dogs, but the vast majority of dogs experienced symptom relief. One owner even commented that their 9-year-old dog sleeps better than ever due to the itch relief he gets after a bath with this shampoo.
Our Take: If you want to stay away from potentially harsh chemicals, this is a good option that gives many dogs itch relief.
4. Curaseb Medicated Shampoo for Dog & Cats
Active Ingredients: Chlorhexidine Gluconate (2%) and Ketoconazole (1%)
Customer Reviews: The vast majority of dogs who were washed in this shampoo experienced symptom relief. It doesn’t work for every dog, but most owners are thrilled with this shampoo. Many people specifically mentioned that this helped their dog with yeast infections.
Our Take: This is one of the best anti-yeast shampoos available for dogs.
5. Pet MD - Medicated Shampoo for Dogs, Cats and Horses
Active Ingredients: Chlorhexidine Gluconate (2%) and Ketoconazole (1%)
Customer Reviews: Multiple customers reported that as little as one wash in this shampoo cleared up yeast or other skin problems when years of medications, food trials, and other treatments failed. Like any product, this didn’t work for all dogs, but most experienced relief.
Our Take: This is one of the best shampoos you can find for yeasty dogs.
Anti-Yeast Ear Cleaner
If your dog’s yeast problem is in their ears, daily cleaning with a specially formulated ear cleaner can help get the yeast under control.
ZYMOX Enzymatic Ear Solution with 0.5-Percent Hydrocortisone
Active Ingredients: 0.5% Hydrocortisone
Customer Reviews: By and large, customers love Zymox. They say it has worked as well as - or even better than - prescription ear drops from their vet. Some people say it didn’t work for their dog, but the vast majority of people swear by this product.
Our Take: If your dog has yeasty ears, this is a must-have item to help them feel better.