The Papillon is a small dog with very large distinct shaped ears. The breed is named after the French word “papillon,” meaning “butterfly” for their butterfly winged ears.
Papillons are petite and measure 8-11 inches at the shoulder. Although Paps are seldom picky with their food, we have reviewed the best dog food for Papillons available on the market to give you plenty to choose from.
But first a little more on the breed!
Papillons have a plumed tail and a silky coat. Their fur is typically a variant of white with other colors fused in.
Being a smaller dog, most generally weigh 5-10 pounds with a life expectancy ranging from 14-16 years.
Paps are happy in both warm and cool climates and can also thrive in both rural and urban settings.
They are energetic, youthful, and always ready to play. Paps are excellent family dogs for these reasons. They are also a favorite choice at dog shows, with an advantage in anything involving agility.
This makes Papillons very well-rounded dogs who provide excellent companionship.
Down below, we’ve gone over a ton of the best dog food for Papillons and matched the best ones to their nutritional needs and dietary restrictions.
We also have some tips on how to groom, exercise, train, and care for your best friend.
Let’s jump in.
Importance of Nutrition for your Papillon
Paps will enjoy almost any high-quality dog food. They are not picky eaters.
If you do decide to prepare your own food, you should always consult a vet to make sure you are providing a complete and balanced meal with all the vitamins and nutrients that your dog needs.
Your dog’s diet will change as they grow from a puppy to a senior, so you should be adjusting the food you use as they get older.
Obesity has become a huge problem in the canine world, and it’s a problem best solved by early prevention.
You should be responsible when feeding your dog and give them the correct portions to avoid overfeeding them. This can cause major health problems down the road.
You should consult a vet to see what the appropriate calorie consumption is for your dog, and what the ideal weight is.
You should also be cautious when feeding human food to your dog, because some are not safe for them.
Knowing this information is part of being a responsible dog owner, and if you want to keep your companion safe, be sure to familiarize yourself.
Finally, you should keep fresh, clean water out and available for your Papillon so they can stay hydrated and healthy.
|Product Name||Features||Our Rating||Prices|
|Canidae All Life Stages Dog Dry Food||● Ideal for any age
● Quality ingredients from trusted sources
● No corn, wheat, or soy
|Taste of the Wild Grain-Free High Protein Dry Dog Food||● Real meat is the primary ingredient
● Packed with amino acids and proteins
● Contains vitamins and minerals
|Whole Earth Farms Grain-Free Recipe Dry Dog Food||● High-quality protein source
● Contains good quality ingredients
|Merrick Lil Plates Grain-Free Recipe||● Specifically designed for small breeds
● First ingredient is real meat
● Packed with nutrition
|Orijen Original Dog Food||● All-natural ingredients
● Premium protein source
● Easy to digest
Best Dog Food For Papillons
A huge part of taking care of your Papillon is ensuring proper nutrition. By doing this, you’ll be able to raise a happy, healthy Pap. You can avoid dozens of potential health problems in the future by feeding your dog safe and nutritious food now. Because we want you to be able to provide your dog with the best food possible, we’ve put together a list of the five best dog foods for Papillons. Any of these high-quality options will provide the appropriate diet and quality ingredients that we know your best friend deserves.
This high-quality dry dog food is suitable for dogs of all ages, sizes, and breeds, and will work wonderfully for your Papillon.
This is especially appealing if you have multiple dogs. By using Canidae All Life Stages, you can avoid having to buy multiple bags of foods to accommodate each of your dogs and instead just buy one type that will satisfy the nutritional requirements for all of them.
Even if you have just one pet, Canidae dog food makes things easier by providing one food for your pet. You won’t have to switch based on your dog’s weight or age. This food uses premium, quality ingredients that are full of nutrients and don’t include corn, wheat, or soy.
- Can be used at any age
- Can be used for multiple dogs
- No corn, wheat, or soy
- Some customers report damaged packaging, please check yours!
Taste of the Wild uses roasted, real meat in their food to provide a natural, healthy experience for your Papillon.
Real meat is the first ingredient, and the rest is packed with optimal amino acids and proteins that help to build muscle and maintain a healthy weight. Taste of the Wild also includes vitamins, minerals, fruits, and vegetables along with a fatty acid blend to help build strong skin and a healthy coat.
They boast quality ingredients from trusted and sustainable sources that contain no grain, corn, wheat, fillers, artificial flavors, colors, or preservatives. Their food is full of nutrients and easy to digest. Taste of the Wild is family owned and maintains an impeccable reputation. They stress safety and they create some of the best food on the market.
- Real meat is the primary ingredient
- Packed with amino acids and proteins
- Contains vitamins and minerals
- Quality ingredients from trusted sources
- Options for puppies as well
- No grain, corn, wheat, fillers, artificial flavors, colors or preservatives
- Some dogs do not like the taste, but very uncommon
This food by Whole Earth comes in pork, beef, or lamb flavor and is some of the highest quality protein-based dog food that money can buy for your Papillon.
Whole Earth Farms food is grain-free to promote easy digestion and long-term internal health for your dog. This food will also promote a healthy, shiny coat, less shedding, and better skin.
They also offer poultry-free foods for dogs that have sensitivity to poultry. The first five ingredients are Pork Meal, Dried Potatoes, Peas, Sweet Potatoes, and Pork Fat.
- High-quality protein source
- Easy to digest
- Varying quality reported
This Merrick recipe is specifically designed for small breeds, which makes it a great option for your Papillon. It comes in Beef, Chicken, or Salmon and a variety of sizes.
The first ingredient is real chicken and it is grain-free. Merrick food is packed with nutrition and contains no gluten ingredients for easy digestion.
It also includes fruits and vegetables like apples, potatoes, blueberries, and peas. The kibbles are small and crunchy, which is good for your dog’s dental health.
This food also contains omega fatty acids to promote healthy skin and fur. It is recommended that you feed your Papillon 1/3 of a cup for every 3 pounds of body weight each day.
- Specifically designed for small breeds
- First ingredient is real meat
- Packed with nutrition
- Contains no gluten
- Includes fruits and vegetables
- Not all dogs like all the flavors, be selective!
This reputable dog food comes in Chicken, Fish, and Turkey and has a natural and nutritional ingredients list.
Along with a premium protein of your choice, this food contains whole eggs, liver, peas, navy beans, lentils, kidney, pinto beans, and chickpeas.
Orijen taps into the primal instinct of your animal’s desire for fresh, protein-packed meat. This food is suitable for dogs of all life stages and has easy-to-digest ingredients to improve digestive health.
- All-natural ingredients
- Premium protein source
- Easy to digest
- Orijen has issued a recall in the past on their food products
About Your Papillon Breed
Though the Papillon has an impressive coat with long hair, they don’t have an undercoat.
This means that they don’t need to be groomed all that frequently. You should plan on grooming your Papillon about once a month.
Your Pap will benefit from brushing often. Papillons only need to bathed 3 to 4 times a year, or as needed. If they get muddy or dirty often, the frequency of baths will increase.
Papillons will also need to have their nails trimmed quite regularly, as they do grow quickly and if you’re not careful, the dewclaw can injure the animal if not clipped. You will experience seasonal Papillon coat shedding, so be prepared!
Papillons are primarily indoor dogs but they still need exercise here and there just like any other dog. Papillons are energetic, and will benefit from playing outdoor games like fetch.
They are fast learners and quite intelligent, so you shouldn’t have any trouble teaching them to play. Paps love the outdoors and will chase anything they find to be interesting.
They also tend to behave larger than they are, so you should supervise your Papillon closely if you are not in an enclosed area and other animals are around.
Papillons will need regular exercise to remain happy and healthy, and you should be prepared to make sure your Pap gets a daily dose of physical activity.
As you may already know, Paps are a very intelligent breed that learns fast and loves to make their human partners happy.
It is common for smaller breeds of dogs to make house training a pain, but Papillons buck this trend. House training your Pap should be relatively straightforward and easy compared to more troublesome smaller breeds.
As with all dogs, socializing your pup from a small age will be important to ensure that human interactions are less stressful going forward.
You should give your Pap a variety of experiences and interactions with new people so that it doesn’t see them as a threat and is comfortable being petted by strangers and passersby.
You may want to consider bringing your dog to obedience classes to learn from a potential. AKC has published this article on finding the right classes for your dog.
Obedience classes can be just as beneficial for the owner as it is for the dog, and you can learn how to interact and control your dog without accidentally reinforcing bad behavior that may affect their ability to interact with others.
One thing to avoid if you want a well-behaved Papillon is leaving them in isolation or letting them stay home alone for extended periods of time. Paps are very social creatures and are happiest when they have companionship.
This can be humans or other pets. Overall, Papillons are outgoing, obedient, and love to make their owners happy. These are the perfect ingredients for dog training.
Although Papillons are not picky eaters, some individuals may exhibit allergies. If you think your Pap has allergies, consider a change in diet.
Papillons have a big personality, but due to their small physical size, you need to be careful around your dog so as to not injure them by accidentally stepping on them or kicking them.
Other hazards include stairs, furniture, children, and other pets. These should especially be considered when they are puppies and are most vulnerable to injury.
Children should be taught to be careful when handling their new puppies, and you should make sure that they know how to respect the animal when interacting with it.
This is best for the safety of both the child and the dog.
Any good breeder will examine their puppies for certain health conditions to ensure there is no unnecessary risk taken. The Papillon Club of America recommends the following health tests for all Papillons:
- Ophthalmologist Evaluation
- Patella Evaluation
- Cardiac Exam
For a link to the official statement from the Papillon Club of America, click here.
When it comes to your dog’s health, food is an important factor. Your Papillon needs food that is easy to digest, promotes healthy coat and skin, and is full of the nutrients they need for healthy growth and energy.
All of the options we’ve reviewed today offer those qualities.
You may want to try each food and decide for yourself which one yields the best results and the best reaction from your dog.
Beyond nutrition, you’ll also want a food that is safe and doesn’t make you worry about the quality. Each of the companies that make these foods are reputable and are popular within the Papillon community.