English Springer Spaniel Diet: Picking the Right Food

August 29, 2022

English Springer Spaniels are a lively breed who appear to never run out of energy. But all of this running around requires your dog to have a great diet packed with nutritional foods.

But what does a good Springer Spaniel diet look like?

Well, we all know that a high-quality diet is important for dogs, though all foods are not equal in this regard. Knowing which foods tick all of the nutritional boxes and which fall short can make a difference in many aspects of your dog's life, including how long they live!

In this article, we will cover what you should look for when choosing a diet for your English Springer Spaniel along with some great tips on keeping your canine companion happy and healthy.

If you have an English Springer Spaniel and want to know what should be in their diet you are in the right place.

What Does a Good English Springer Spaniel Diet Contain?

First, let's start by outlining what a nutritionally correct diet looks like for a Springer Spaniel.

By understanding what your dog actually needs to stay lean and healthy it will be easier to assess how effectively the dog food options meet their needs.


Protein is a staple of any good dog diet and will be an important component at every stage of your dog's life for a Springer Spaniel puppy straight through to senior dogs.

This should be the primary ingredient of any dog food, no matter which type of diet you choose. You will want to see recognisable proteins there such as:

  • Fish
  • Chicken
  • Beef
  • Lamb
  • Turkey
  • Duck

These are the main proteins I would be looking for if assessing dog food. I'd look to see this listed at the top of the ingredients list. Some foods can have "meal meat" but this is far lower quality than one of the whole meats listed above.

Even though protein is an important factor in a Springer Spaniels diet too much can be dangerous. The correct amount of protein a dog needs in their diet will vary depending on age.

Springer Spaniel puppies need the highest amount of protein in their food, Look for between 22% and 32% on the packaging of your dog's food.

This is due to all of the growth and bone development puppies do and one of the main reasons why it's important to feed a puppy food specifically designed for their needs.

Adult Springers need far less protein than puppies. Look for foods with 18% protein, again this should be listed as a key ingredient and you would want it to be recognisable whole meat as listed above.

Protein intake increases for senior dogs going up to around 24%. This is to help fuel their muscles in their older age.


Fats are a crucial element of your Springer Spaniels diet, even more so than many other dog breeds. This is due to their active nature, especially if you have a working dog.

Your English Springer will use fat as a source of energy. Given that this breed needs a solid two hours of exercise per day the fat content of their diet needs to be quite high to keep up with their needs.

Good fats in dog food:

  • Fish oils: Salmon or herring
  • Animal fats: Pork, beef, or chicken fat
  • Oils: Flaxseed, hempseed, or sunflower

These are the oils I'd keep an eye for on food packaging. There are also a few bad ones you'd want to avoid though such as lard.

Springer Spaniels of all ages require between 10% and 15% fat in their diet. If your dog is meeting their exercise needs then you would want food that offers closer to 15% to offer the extra energy your dog needs.


While carbs are not considered an "essential" part of a dog's diet they do play an important role. They give dog food its structure and allow it to be easy to eat.

Your Springer's digestive system isn't intended for digesting large amounts of carbs, which isn't surprising really when you consider they were bred as hunting dogs and historically hunted their prey in the wild.

But while there is no dietary requirement for carbs, they do need the glucose that it provides.

The best carbs to look for:

  • Brown rice
  • Whole oats
  • Whole wheat
  • Sweet potatoes
  • Whole corn
  • Barley (pearled)

If you see one of these in the ingredients section you are on to a winner.

On the other side, there are bad carbs to watch out for such as white rice, potatoes, corn, peas, or wheat.

No matter which life stage your Springer Spaniel is at they need 20% of their food to be carbs. Make sure it is one from the good list though. People can be tripped up by the difference between wheat and whole wheat.

Vitamins and Minerals

Though only around 1% of high-quality dog food vitamins and minerals go a long way to keeping your dog healthy and are a great sign of the quality food and an easy way to reveal many low-quality ones.

There are real benefits offered here including reduced inflammation and providing antioxidants, antitumour, and antimicrobial benefits.


  • Vitamin A
  • Vitamin B
  • Vitamin C
  • Vitamin D
  • Vitamin E
  • Vitamin K


  • Magnesium
  • Potassium
  • Calcium
  • Zinc
  • Iron
  • Magnagese

You may not see all of the above listed on the packaging but if none were I'd be a little alarmed. Also, these are often seen as only trace amounts of each in it.

A Springer Spaniels Daily Calorie Needs

No matter which of the food options you choose your Springer's food will need to meet its daily calorie requirements.

For active dogs who are well exercised that is around 1353 calories per day. This goes down to 989 for dogs who are more inactive, or if you have a senior Springer Spaniel.

This number can change again and should only be used as a guide. If you have a working Springer Spaniel their high-intensity days will see them exercising far more than the two hours a day they need, so they may need a little more food to fuel it.

Likewise, older dogs or those with limited mobility will not need as much to remain at a healthy weight so may need fewer calories a day.

It is fairly straightforward to work out the amount of food you should feed your dog but if would like more information we do have an in-depth guide on how much to feed a Springer Spaniel.

Options for Springer Spaniels Diets

Now you know exactly what to look for when your assessing dog food let's take a look at the different diets that are available.

I'll just cover the main options that owners choose which are dry dog food (kibble) which I'd say was the most common option right now and the raw food diets which are gaining popularity.

Wet or canned foods are not quite as commonly seen when looking at premium dog food.

Dry Food

Dry dog food, also known as kibble is a go-to for most dog owners. It is straightforward, affordable, and ticks all of the nutritional boxes you would want.

When buying kibble for English Springer Spaniels try to look for foods which say they are "balanced and complete" these foods will offer a balanced nutritional diet and give your dog everything they need.

If you already have food at home you will want to check it against the ingredients and percentages above to make sure it's good quality.

BARF Diet or Homemade Dog Foods

This stands for "biologically approved raw food". Basically, it's a dog diet where you would feed your Springer a combination of raw foods in place of typical dog food.

You have quite a lot of freedom to create a raw diet for your dog. If this sounds interesting and you want to learn more about it we have a guide on raw feeding dogs.

There are also frozen pre-packaged options for raw feeding wanted to try it without all of the mess.

Best Springer Spaniel Foods

After all of this talk about what English Springer Spaniels should eat I'm sure you are keen to know which dog foods actually meet the nutritional requirements of your dog.

Well here are my top pics for feeding Springer at each stage of their life.

Springer Spaniel Puppy Food

A Springer puppy has a lot of growing to do and as such needs food that can keep up with its rapid growth. For this, I would recommend IAMS for Vitality Junior dry dog food.

What makes this a good food for a Springer puppy?

This food ticks all of the boxes we discussed earlier. It has 32% protein which is on the higher side of the scale we would want to see. High-quality fats and a 17% fat content, again ideal for active pups. Rice as its main carb and has a wide range of vitamins and minerals.

A solid dog food that can ensure a very young puppy can stay healthy.

Adult Springer Spaniel Food

As adult dogs, Springers are their most active and that means the quality of food couldn't be more important. For this, I'd recommend Eukanuba Active Adult dry dog food.

Why is this good for adult Springer Spaniels?

This food has been specially formulated for active breeds making it very well suited to Springer Spaniels. Meets all of your dog's dietary requirements with ease and promotes muscle development and keeps energy levels high, not that Springers need help in that department!

Senior Springer Spaniel Food

As senior dogs have different dietary requirements it's important to change the food we feed our dogs. For senior Springers, I'd recommend Enkanuba's Thriving Mature dry dog food.

Why is this good for seniors?

This dry dog food has been made to meet the evolving needs of ageing dogs with little health problems popping up. Looking through the ingredients list you will see a high protein content and a wide range of premium ingredients that we discussed above.

An ideal food for older Spaniels.

BARF Options

While you can make up raw foods yourself at home it can be faster and easier to buy a frozen pack to just feed your dog as normal.

There are options to get these online too. The most popular option so far is Nutriment Enhanced Adult Working Dog raw food. Getting this will take the guesswork out of creating a balanced raw diet for your Springer at home while still having all of the benefits it offers.

An easy way to try out this healthy alternative to normal dog foods.


Making sure your English Springer Spaniel has a well-balanced nutritional diet is an important aspect of dog ownership. And the first step in that process is understanding what should be in your dog's diet.

The last thing your want is for your dog to have nutritional deficiencies due to low-quality food leading to health issues in the future.

You may think a Springer would get bored having the same food each day but they are rarely fussy eaters and will eat anything only offer generally.

The only other consideration you may need to have is if your dog has any food allergies or special dietary needs. Then just look for a food which can meet their unique requirements while keeping balanced nutrition. We do have a resource on food allergies in dogs too if that is something you are experiencing.

If you are searching for dog food for your English Springer at any stage of their life the advice on what to look out for will go a long way to making sure you have a happy and healthy dog.

And if you are not sure which to go for we do have a few recommendations above that tick all of the boxes you would look for in a balanced diet.

Allan  Noble
Hi, my name is Allan! I am the owner of Spaniel Advisor and I've got over seven years experience of owning Spaniels.  
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