What to feed baby german shepherds
How Much To Feed A German Shepherd Puppy: An Easy To Follow Guide
Do you know how much to feed a German Shepherd puppy for the best growth and health?
Or, maybe you just need a simple feeding chart by age or weight for your new puppy?
By the time you’re done reading this, you’ll learn the right amounts to feed your pup to grow strong and fit and keep you on the right track to a lifetime of health.
Let’s get started and find out how much, how often, and what foods your GSD puppy loves to eat.
German Shepherd Puppy Feeding Guide
Knowing how much to feed a German Shepherd puppy helps you to keep track of their growth and habits. It’s good to chart how much you’re feeding them so that you can monitor their weight gain, growth, and appetite changes.
Follow this chart as a guide for how much food a German Shepherd puppy usually eats.
German Shepherd Puppy Feeding Chart By Age
As a general guideline, here’s how much you should feed your German Shepherd puppy daily by their age and cups of food:
- 8 weeks old: 1 to 1 ½ cups of food spread over 4 meals daily
- 12 weeks old: 1 ½ to 2 cups of food spread over 4 meals daily
- 6 months to 9 months old: 2 cups to 3 cup of food spread over 3 meals daily
- 9 months to 12 months old: 3 cups to 3 ½ cups of food spread over 3 meals daily
- 12 months old and above: 3 ½ to 4 cups of food spread over 2 meals daily
Adjust the amounts based on your dog’s lifestyle. A more active puppy might need extra calories, while a lower energy puppy doesn’t need as much food per day. These are guidelines only.
So, feel free to adjust the amounts based on your German Shepherd’s energy needs.
|Puppy Age||Total Cups of Dry Kibble||Number of Meals Per Day|
|8 weeks old||1 – 1 ½ cups||4|
|12 weeks old||1 ½ – 2 cups||4|
|6 months to 9 months old||2 – 3 cups||3|
|9 months to 12 months old||3 – 3 ½ cups||3|
|12 months old and above||3 ½ – 4 cups||2|
Offer your dog their food around the same time each day. If they don’t eat their meal in 10 to 15 minutes remove their dish. Wait an hour and offer them the same meal to see if they’ve changed their mind about eating.
How Much Should A German Shepherd Puppy Eat?German Shepherd puppies eat more than you think!
On average, adult German Shepherds should eat at least 1,272 calories to 2,100 calories daily. This amount depends on their age, existing health conditions, and activity level. Older and less active German Shepherds eat around 1300 calories daily to maintain a healthy weight. Meanwhile, an active and energetic older GSD may eat at 1700 calories a day.
But what about a German Shepherd puppy?
How much should a German Shepherd puppy eat?
The answer will surprise you!
German Shepherd puppies eat twice the amount of calories per pound of weight when compared to adult German Shepherds. This means an 8-week-old German Shepherd puppy can eat double the food of an adult GSD! Puppies eat double their adult counterparts in order to maintain growth and development. Their caloric intake is crucial to keep their bodies strong and give them necessary energy to grow.
A German Shepherd puppy that is younger than four months old will need at least 80-90 calories per pound of body weight in order to grow and develop. Once a German Shepherd puppy reaches four months of age, then you can reduce his calorie requirements to around 40-60 calories per pound of body weight. Weigh your puppy routinely, check on their overall body condition, and adjust their calories to support their growth.
Young Shepherds are even busier than working adult dogs. After all, they’re growing into their large paws, running around with zoomies, chewing (things they should and shouldn’t), playing fetch, and learning allabout the world around them. All of this requires additional energy.
Remember, calories vary greatly between brands and manufacturers. Always read the feeding label and nutritional guidelines on the package of food you are feeding your GSD.
Here is a simple calorie chart by age and weight to help you find a good feeding amount for your puppy to start with.
German Shepherd Puppy Calories By Age
|Puppy Age||Number of Feedings||Average Calories|
|Puppies – Weaning to 12- weeks||4 per day||1200 – 2400 calories|
|Puppies – 3 to 6-months||3 per day||2000 – 2200 calories|
|Puppies – 6 to 12-months||3 per day||2700 – 3900 calories|
|Puppies – 12 to 18-months||2 per day||3300 – 4250 calories|
Many puppies need additional calories right before a growth spurt, then eat slightly less after the growth spurt. It’s difficult to tell when the growth spurt begins, but you might notice that your puppy always seems hungry.
On average your German Shepherd puppy under 4 months old needs about 80 – 90 calories per pound of their body weight. This figure is adjustable given how active your dog is during their day and as they grow – scientifically, this number is called their resting energy requirements, or RER. The RER is a mathematical formula to calculate the minimum requirements for a German Shepherd puppy’s growth.
But, it’s not set in stone!
So, don’t get stuck on the numbers exactly. Instead, use them as a guide.
Watch your puppy’s body condition and waist line. German Shepherd puppies should have an hourglass figure when seen from overhead. They aren’t bulky or heavily muscular as young puppies.
And bulking up a puppy is not healthy for their joints. Instead, you want them to steadily increase their growth.
If you think your puppy is trying to eat everything, including his food bowl, then offer a small bit more food. If he seems slightly chubby or fat, then decrease the food by a small bit.
How Much To Feed A German Shepherd Puppy By Weight
German Shepherd Puppy Calorie Chart: 0 – 4 months
|Weight in Pounds||Calories/Day|
German Shepherd Puppy Calorie Chart: 4 months – 1 year
|Weight in Pounds||Calories/Day|
If you look at the feeding recommendations on your dog’s food package, you’ll likely see the amounts to feed a German Shepherd puppy are written in cups rather than calories. Those guidelines are safe to follow because they calculate your puppy’s calorie requirements in the same way the above charts do. Plus, using a measuring cup is easier than figuring out caloric needs using a mathmatical formula.
Now, you need to choose the right number of feedings per day for your German Shepherd puppy.
How Often Should You Feed A German Shepherd Puppy?
|Puppy’s Age||Feedings Per Day||Snacks?|
|6 to 12 weeks old||4||Yes, often but healthy treats|
|12 weeks to 6 months old||3||Yes, often but healthy treats|
|6 months to 1 year old||2||Yes, occasionally|
|1 year and older old||2||Yes, limited|
How often you should feed a German Shepherd puppy depends on their age and their activity level. This means:
- A 6 to 12 week-old German Shepherd puppy eats 4 times a day
- A 12-week to 6-month old German Shepherd puppy eats 3 times a day
- A 6-month to 1-year old German Shepherd puppy eats 2 times a day
- At 1-year and older you can keep feeding your German Shepherd puppy twice a day
Feeding smaller meals throughout the day also supports your puppy’s blood sugar and energy level which helps them grow steadily and behave better in your home.
When you know how many times to feed a German Shepherd puppy per day it’s easy to see the need for a regular feeding schedule to keep track of his meals!
Many owners also want to know when they can switch to adult food formulas for their German Shepherd puppies. So, let’s take a look at the answer.
When Should You Switch Your German Shepherd Puppy To Adult Food?Switch your GSD puppy to adult food when they are around 12 to 18 months old.
Puppies can begin adult kibble when they are approximately 80 percent of their adult weight. This usually occurs around 8 to 10 months of age, but you can safely feed puppy food up to 18 months old as long as they are not putting on excess weight too quickly. German Shepherds usually don’t reach their full growth until 18 months of age and tend to fill out later than smaller breed dogs.
It isn’t harmful to keep a German Shepherd on puppy formula until their growth plates have fused over, which is generally around 12 to 18 months of age (UCLA – Davis).
If you want to know what to feed a German Shepherd puppy, keep reading.
What Do You Feed A German Shepherd Puppy?Finding the best food to feed your German Shepherd puppy is overwhelming at times.
Your German Shepherd’s athletic body, as well as his energy, health, and condition, depend in part on what you choose to pour into his bowl and knowing how much to feed your German Shepherd puppy.
This means choosing what to feed a German Shepherd puppy is even more serious and intimidating!
Most dog foods on the market will adequately sustain your dog’s life.
But you don’t want adequate…
You want your dog to bloom with health!
Feed a German Shepherd puppy a dry kibble from a major, research-based and vet-backed dog food manufacturer. Dry kibble is the most convenient, economical choice for most puppies. Look for a food created especially for large breed puppies that states the formula is a complete and balanced meal.
The Best German Shepherd Puppy Food for Healthy Growth and Weight GainLook for the following brands of food for your GSD.
The following dog foods are all recommended for large breed puppies and meet and exceed regulated nutritional standards. Feeding a high-quality kibble from a name-brand company that uses feeding trials ensures the best quality and nutrition.
Here are some of the best German Shepherd puppy foods that are research-backed.
- Royal Canin Large Breed Puppy Formula – Great for Picky Eaters! Packed with nutrients to help limit inflammation of the joints and uses fresh ingredients.
- Purina Pro Plan Large Breed Puppy Formula – Perfect for Sensitive Stomachs! Easily digestible formula for puppies prone to allergies and sensitive stomachs.
- Hill’s Science Diet Large Breed Puppy- Terrific for Coat and Skin Health! Rich aroma with DHA fish oil to entice puppies to finish every last bite while giving shine to their coats.
The better the food, the healthier your pup will be inside and out. Don’t feed your German Shepherd puppy the cheapest food you can buy. Cheaper GSD puppy food lacks quality proteins that are essential for your working breed dog.
These premium foods cost more initially, but because they’re calorie and nutrient dense they feed your puppy for longer than cheaper foods. They can also help your German Shepherd puppy gain weight in a healthy way, so they don’t bulk-up too quickly.
Adding too much weight to your German Shepherd too soon can cause lifelong joint issues that are painful to your pet and expensive on your wallet.
Name Brand Puppy Food Versus Boutique Formulas
Don’t buy boutique formulas, as these companies don’t always quality check or feed test their formulas, and many have been found linked to causing deadly heart conditions in dogs.
Don’t believe me?
You can read for yourself the American Kennel Club’s statement on the matter (AKC.org).
The brands recommended meet the World Small Animal Veterinary Association (WSAVA) criteria and have no reported cases of DCM. Purina and Hill’s all have boarded Diplomates of ACVN on staff and Ph.D. Animal Scientists and Nutritionists work to ensure quality control and exceed nutritional standards (WSAVA.org).
Most GSDs are healthy and fit on commercial dog foods that are high quality.
These balanced formulas keep their bones and muscles strong throughout their growing periods and can ward off later joint issues, a common breed problem, as they mature. There is a greater demand for quality nutrition during the early growth stage. For these reasons, you must feed high-quality food.
They’ll eat eagerly and have a shiny coat and bright eyes with a scientifically based commercial diet that meets their needs.
Now, consider what to feed a German Shepherd puppy based on their age.
Week-By-Week German Shepherd Puppy Feeding GuideFollow a feeding schedule based on your dog’s age.
These feeding charts and guides will help keep your new companion growing strong and athletic. Find your puppy’s age and follow the guidelines to help them grow athletic and strong.
Your pup should be with its mother nursing during this stage.
Tiny portions of canned, wet foods are introduced. But they still derive the bulk of the nutrients from their mother’s milk. The mother’s milk contains colostrum, antibiotic milk that protects the young pup during the first 8 to 10-weeks of their lives.
Meals per day: 4 or more (Puppies should stay with their mom for to keep them healthy. )
At 8-weeks-old, your GSD pup should be fed hard kibble moistened with warm goat’s milk left to sit for 10 minutes. This goat’s milk is highly digestible and provides your growing GSD pup with plenty of healthy vitamins and minerals that are essential to their bodies during this critical stage of their lives.
Do not use cow’s milk as this will cause stomach upset and sickness!
Goat’s milk can be used throughout their lives, even as adults, to make their meals more enticing and encourage healthy eating habits.
At 8-weeks-old a GSD pup is eating more solid foods and develops a better appetite for kibble and other foods. Add in only a couple of small spoonfuls of canned plain pumpkin, unsweetened Greek yogurt, or cooked oatmeal to entice your pup to eat.
As you’ve most likely started to train your German Shepherd puppy, they’ll need energy to keep up with the new skills they’re learning so they stay sharp and alert.
Meals per day: 4
Continue feeding the same as the 8-week-old diet. Don’t change kibble brands if you find one your dog eats, enjoys, and shows positive, healthy results.
Don’t change your dog’s diet as long as they are enjoying their food, have plenty of energy for daily activities, and a beautiful, full, shiny coat.
Treats are not only enjoyable for your German Shepherd, but help you to eneterain and build a positive relationship with him. Just watch the calories and weight gain to ensure treats aren’t overdone.
You’re most likely noticing your puppy is a non-stop motion blur around your house! Be sure to keep their zoomies under control by playing plenty of fun German Shepherd games for puppies.
Meals per day: 4
Continue to feed the kibble. You can still offer goat’s milk as long as they enjoy it.
Watch for excessive weight gain during this growth time as their bones cannot take extra weight!
Too much weight gain too quickly can cause joint issues as an adult and prevent healthy development. If your high-energy German Shepherd still seems like they can’t rest or calm down, then try a different training technique.
Use their mental energy to help keep them more relaxed throughout the day by playing brain-boosting mind games for German Shepherd puppies. You’ll not only love the games to bond with your new puppy, but your dog will love learning how to put their brilliant minds to great use!
Meals per day: 3 to 4
Keep your puppy trim and athletic by monitoring how much you feed your puppy and their body condition. You can write how much they eat and track this over time, and adjust how much your feed your German Shepherd puppy to keep them at a healthy weight.
Try using fresh, raw, cut-up pieces of carrots as healthy treats or small, deseeded cubes of fresh apple as part of their training treats.
Keep your eyes open for a growth spurt about to begin! They’ll gulp down their meals and you might even wonder if they’ll ever stop eating.
Meals per day: 3
Around this time, you might notice your puppy finish their meal quickly and look for more food. It’s OK to start giving them a small handful more of kibble since they’re most likely going through a growth spurt.
Be sure to watch how many treats you give them throughout the day. Many puppy treats are high in calories so monitor these additions to your dog’s feeding routine.
If you haven’t yet taught your dog leash manners, then don’t delay in training your German Shepherd puppy to walk nicely on leash. They’ll soon have the strength to pull you down the road with their power!
Meals per day: 3
As your puppy keeps growing it’s a good idea to weigh them on a scale. You can do this by holding them safely in your arms and weighing them with you on the scale. Then, place them on the floor and step onto the scale without them to weigh yourself.
Subtract the difference between the weights and you’ve got your puppy’s weight.
Remember, around 16 to 20-weeks old your German Shepherd puppy begins to rapidly grow. This means it’s essential to not overfeed them because extra weight can cause damage to their joints and bones.
Meals per day: 3
Around 5-months old you might notice your puppy’s height increase, along with their bodies starting to plump up and fill out. While it’s healthy for a German Shepherd puppy to begin filling out around this time, they shouldn’t have a round belly.
Instead, when looking overhead at your puppy their waist should look trim and not rounded outwards. German Shepherd puppies should appear sleek in their waistline.
Meals per day: 3
22-Week And Older Puppy
Continue to feed your German Shepherd puppy dry kibble with a small amount of healthy foods mixed in. You can lessen the healthy food you mix in gradually if you prefer. But, even as adults, German Shepherds love a bit of tasty toppers on their kibble.
Around a year old, begin feeding your German Shepherd puppy 2 meals a day. Don’t ever feed your German Shepherd only 1 large meal a day as this could cause bloat, a deadly medical issue in their stomachs.
Two meals, one in the morning and evening, are not only safer but also provide your German Shepherd with sustained energy to fuel their high-energy lifestyle.
Create A Positive Meal Time ExperienceSet up a feeding routine for your German Shepherd puppy so they learn meal manners.
If you have a new puppy that you’ve just brought home they might feel scared, anxious, or stressed. You can create a positive meal time by using the following tips:
- Always offer fresh water during their meal times.
- Keep the area where they eat their food in calm and out of the way of the family hustle and bustle.
- Don’t pester them while they eat, reach into their food bowl to remove food, or try to play with them.
I found sitting with a book reading, just keeping my GSD puppy company, encouraged my dog to eat their meals while giving us time to quietly bond. If your new German Shepherd puppy still isn’t eating, try feeding them by hand.
What’s The Best Time To Feed A German Shepherd?Feed your German Shepherd at the same time everyday.
The best time to feed a German Shepherd puppy is in the morning, before you leave for the day, and in the evening, about 2 hours before you put your dog to bed. Allow them to potty after eating to ensure their comfort. Your dog also needs to eat at other times of the day for their health and growth. If it’s easier for your schedule you can feed 3 smaller meals around the same time that you eat at breakfast, lunch, and dinnertime.
German Shepherd puppies who are on 4 daily feedings are best fed:
- In the mornings
- Around noon (mid-day)
- The afternoon (when you return home from school or work and after they go potty)
- In the evening for their last meal
If you’re feeding your dog 3 times a day, the best times are:
- In the morning before you leave for the day
- Around noon (or early afternoon)
- In the evening
German Shepherd puppies 12 months and older are best fed twice a day:
- In the morning before you leave home
- In the evening, before their last walk of the day
Each family will have different schedules, so adjust your feeding times accordingly. Aim for equally spaced out meals at the same time each day so your German Shepherd’s routine stays regular.
German Shepherd Puppy Feeding AmountSo many choices for feeding your puppy!
How much you should feed a German Shepherd puppy really depends on a number of factors. Your GSD pup should eat enough to maintain their growth and energy, while not carrying any extra fat.
Consider the following factors for how much to feed German Shepherd puppies:
- Activity – the daily energy expenditure of your pup
- Age – puppies tend to need more food and calories than senior dogs
- Health – any medical conditions that might affect not only the type of food, but the amount
Here’s a brief look at how much to feed a German Shepherd puppy based on their lifestyle.
What Affects How Much Your German Shepherd Should Eat?Activity level, age, and your dog’s health affects how much they eat.
You might find your German Shepherd puppy eats more or less than what’s listed in these feeding charts. That’s totally normal. Every dog is different.
Keep in mind the number of calories in the kibble, which varies from manufacturer to manufacturer. Each puppy food company has a different amount of calories and size of the kibble.
Here are a few things that might affect how much your German Shepherd puppy should eat.
Your German Shepherd’s food intake depends on his activity level during the day. The more active a German Shepherd puppy is, the more calories he needs to eat to replace lost energy.
Your German Shepherd’s food intake is also affected by their age. For example, puppies need nearly twice the amount of calories as compared to adults.
And older or senior German Shepherds who are less active need less food.
Maintaining a healthy weight is essential to feeding your German Shepherd.
Keeping a slim waist and athletic body helps ensure your German Shepherd’s health. Simply put, you can prevent some medical conditions and health problems by monitoring their waistlines.
Don’t make the mistake of simply giving your underweight German Shepherd more food to make him bigger. Instead follow the healthy way to bulk up a German Shepherd.
To see if your German Shepherd is at the right weight you can find the average weight depending on their age.
Average Weight By Age For Male German Shepherds
|Age||Weight (lbs)||Weight (kg)|
|1 Month||5.5 – 9 lbs||2.5 – 4 kg|
|2 Months||16 – 20 lbs||6 – 9 kg|
|3 Months||22 – 30 lbs||10 – 14 kg|
|4 Months||35 – 40 lbs||16 – 18 kg|
|5 Months||40 – 49 lbs||18 – 22 kg|
|6 Months||49 – 57 lbs||22 – 26 kg|
|7 Months||57 – 62 lbs||26 – 28 kg|
|8 Months||62 – 66 lbs||28 – 30 kg|
|9 Months||64 – 71 lbs||29 – 32 kg|
|10 Months||66 – 73 lbs||30 – 33 kg|
|11 Months||66 – 75 lbs||30 – 34 kg|
|1 Year||71 – 75 lbs||32 – 34 kg|
|2 Years||71 – 84 lbs||32 – 38 kg|
|3 Years||79 – 88 lbs||36 – 40 kg|
Average Weight By Age For Female German Shepherds
|Age||Weight (lbs)||Weight (kg)|
|1 Month||4. 5 – 8 lbs||2 – 3.5 kg|
|2 Months||11 – 17 lbs||5 – 7.5 kg|
|3 Months||17 – 26 lbs||8 – 12 kg|
|4 Months||31 – 35 lbs||14 – 16 kg|
|5 Months||35 – 44 lbs||16 – 20 kg|
|6 Months||44 – 49 lbs||20 – 22 kg|
|7 Months||49 – 53 lbs||22 – 24 kg|
|8 Months||53 – 57 lbs||24 – 26 kg|
|9 Months||55 – 60 lbs||25 – 27 kg|
|10 Months||57 – 62 lbs||26 – 28 kg|
|11 Months||60 – 64 lbs||27 – 29 kg|
|1 Year||60 – 64 lbs||27 – 29 kg|
|2 Years||62 – 66 lbs||28 – 30 kg|
|3 Years||66 – 70 lbs||28 – 32 kg|
If your German Shepherd isn’t within these numbers don’t panic. These numbers are averages. Therefore, a German Shepherd can be smaller or larger than listed and still be perfectly healthy and happy.
Feeding Treats To A German Shepherd
You can include small portions of fresh components to your puppy’s dry kibble for taste and flavor. But don’t add more than a spoonful or two so your dog doesn’t eat only the fresh ingredients and ignore the healthy kibble!
These components shouldn’t make up over 10% of their daily calories to avoid them gaining excess weight.
GSD puppies enjoy eating:
- cooked and raw carrot pieces
- small dollops of unsweetened Greek yogurt
- scrambled and cooked eggs
- canned pumpkin, without spices
- cooked, plain oatmeal without sweeteners
- fresh or frozen blueberries
- goat’s milk (it’s easier on GSDs sensitive digestion than cow’s milk)
If you want to know the best treats for German Shepherd puppies, pick one from this list of healthy German Shepherd treats that are tasty and nutritious.Feeding and Exercise Warning
Give your dog the time to digest its food after he’s had a meal. Never let your pup play hard (running, fetching, jumping) right after you feed them.
Wait 2 hours before and after feeding your dog its meal before heaving exercise or playing hard with them to avoid any gastric problems. A light, slow walk is fine after eating if it’s not long and your puppy doesn’t run.
Be sure to use these best exercises for a growing German Shepherd puppy to avoid injury and teach your dog valuable coordination and balance skills.
These gentle exercises keep your puppy’s joints healthy and help them learn confidence skills while getting to bond with their favorite person…
YOU! 💗Feeding Your German Shepherd Puppy The Right Way
Knowing how much to feed a German Shepherd puppy requires a bit of math and understanding your puppy’s energy levels.
Simply dumping kibble into your dog’s bowl doesn’t mean your job is done.
You still need to keep close watch over your dog’s response to the food by:
- Watching their weight gain or loss closely
- Monitoring their body condition for optimal health
- Understanding how much to feed a German Shepherd puppy to maintain steady growth
Follow the German Shepherd feeding charts to keep your pup healthy and to know the right amount to feed your puppy. It’s essential you understand how to not overfeed your dog to avoid joint damage and lifelong problems.
A healthy German Shepherd puppy will give you lots of fun to enjoy, while you help him have a great start to adulthood.
Now, guess what’s next on your agenda?
Sounds like you’re ready to start training your German Shepherd puppy to keep them entertained and out of trouble.
Don’t let all that puppy energy go to waste…
Use that spark to train them!
12 Best Food for German Shepherd Puppies [2022 – Review]
Adopting a German Shepherd puppy is like having an adorable teddy bear that will hug and cuddle you every hour upon the hour. But, German Shepherd puppies experience rapid growth spurts in their life. And, it falls on you to get the very best food for German Shepherd puppies to ensure a healthy life for your puppy.
New pet parents find it mind-boggling to walk into a store and choose GSD puppy food. A delectable meal for their best friend that provides all the nutritional needs of German Shepherd puppies. So, they may feel lost. But If you stick with us, you’ll find many essential details about your pup’s dietary needs. And learn about the best brands available in the market for German Shepherds. So, without further ado, let’s get started.
12 Best Dog Food for German Shepherd Puppies
Speaking of vital elements that must be present in dog food, here’s a list of the best German Shepherd puppy food. Not only do these brands pay particular heed to the necessary nutrients for your furry friend. They guarantee an energetic and fit German Shepherd puppy by adding in other minerals for the well-being of your dog.
1. Diamond Naturals Premium Large Breed Formulas
Diamond Naturals Dry Food for Puppy, Large Breed Lamb and Rice Formula, 40 Pound Bag
Here’s a power-packed meal to provide antioxidants, probiotics, essential vitamins, and added minerals. The superfoods in the meal promote a long and hearty life for your fluffball. Diamond Naturals formula is specifically for large breed puppies. They need more nourishment to sustain their bone development.
GSDs tend to suffer from elbow and hip dysplasia. So, it is imperative to fortify their immune systems as well as ossein buildout. That will make sure that your pooch does not suffer from joint pains in their adult life.
Furthermore, the antioxidants in the blend prevent cancer. The probiotics in the mix keep the gut flora flourishing, and the omega fatty acids keep the skin, coat, and vision healthy. Diamond tops it all up with a great price tag to give you the ultimate value for your money.
- Rich in antioxidants to boost immunity
- Contains probiotics for a healthier gut
- Rich in essential vitamins and minerals
- Prevents hip dysplasia
- Some bags contain too many crumbs
- Not very tasty for some dogs
2. Blue Buffalo Wilderness High Protein Grain Free Natural Puppy Large Breed Dry Dog Food
Blue Buffalo Wilderness High Protein, Natural Puppy Dry Dog Food, Chicken 24-lb
No doubt, giving your pup what it loves brings you joy. But, it is your job to check that you are also providing your fluffball with the essential nutrients it needs to grow into a beautiful and fit canine.
Blue Buffalo contains clinically proven DHA levels for optimal brain development and the right fat and carbohydrate levels to certify muscle and bone growth. And, fiber and prebiotics warrant smooth digestion. All in all, your puppy will become a gorgeous and healthy beast with Blue Buffalo Wilderness.
And, even if your GSD puppy has a sensitive stomach, you need not worry. The grain-less formula is the ideal food for german shepherd puppies with allergies.
- Contains essential nutrients
- Has DHA for optimal cognitive development
- Has high levels of prebiotic fibers for a healthier gut
- Ideal for GSDs with sensitive stomachs
- It is a little pricey
- Some GSDs don’t like the taste
3. Eukanuba Puppy Dry Dog Food Chicken
Eukanuba Puppy Large Breed Dry Dog Food, 33 lb
Eukanuba cares for both your pocket and your pup’s well-being. So, you get three different packaging options for your puppy. Its main ingredient is high-quality chicken that your puppy will devour. While the formula is enhanced with targeted levels of calcium and phosphorus. You see, German Shepherds need calcium. But, too much can harm them.
But, Eukanuba has been in this business for over fifty years. And, they only provide products par excellence. So, if you are looking for choices in the market, Eukanuba is a sensible addition to your dog’s diet.
- Made from high-quality chicken
- Contains enough levels of calcium and phosphorus
- Supports muscle growth
- It is pricey
- Can cause diarrhea in some dogs
4. Purina ONE SmartBlend Natural Puppy Dog Food
Purina ONE Natural, High Protein, Large Breed Dry Puppy Food, +Plus Large Breed Formula - 31.1 lb. Bag
Crafted with love and care, Purina ONE SmartBlend is an epic meal for your dog. The yummy chicken flavor satisfies your pooch’s taste buds, and the nutrient-rich formula will keep you happy, too. Purina believes that your canine deserves only the best. So, they give you dry dog food for large breed puppies that is free from preservatives. There are no artificial colors, fillers, or flavors. Purina simply does not do meal fillers.
Vets across the globe recommend Purina, and they are so sure of their high quality that Purina offers you to take the 28-day Challenge. If you don’t see a visible improvement in your dog’s coat, skin, energy levels, and well-being, they are satisfied to give you your money back.
- Free from artificial flavors and colors
- No fillers
- Promotes healthy skin and coat
- Can cause bad breath
- Some dogs experienced vomiting
5. Royal Canin German Shepherd Puppy Breed Specific Dry Dog Food
Royal Canin Breed Health Nutrition German Shepherd Puppy Dry Dog Food, 30 lb
Nothing beats Royal Canin German Shepherd puppy food, as you will find from the raving reviews from satisfied pet parents of GSDs. It is a formula specifically made for a German Shepherd. And, they know their German Shepherds. So, they have taken into account the smallest of considerations.
The unique kibble shape is easy to grip with the long and robust muzzle of your German Shepherd. The glucosamine and chondroitin make for smooth digestion. Vitamin E is excellent for your puppy’s muscle development, healthy heart, and liver. Plus, the antioxidants keep the immune system up and running. In short, Royal Canin ranks as a topper in the list of the best diet for German Shepherd puppies.
- Has easy-to-eat kibbles
- Rich in vitamins E for healthier liver, heart, and muscle development
- Boosts immunity
- Can cause runny stools in some dogs
- Some boxes arrived with damage
6. Taste of the Wild High Prairie Canine Grain-Free Recipe
Taste of the Wild High Prairie Canine Grain-Free Recipe with Roasted Bison and Venison Dry Dog Food for Puppies, Made with High Protein from Real Meat and Guaranteed Nutrients and Probiotics 28lb
If you want your puppy delighted with its meal and for him to grow into a big boy, then Taste Of The Wild High Prairie is the healthiest pick of the day. It’s a superior quality formula that is suitable for German Shepherd with delicate tummies.
The blend contains no grain, so there is no question of gluten-related problems. There are no fillers in the meal. And, it has only 100% natural ingredients to guarantee the absolute healthful development of your puppy. Even the smaller-sized kibble is to make chewing and digestion easier for your little fluff ball.
- Suitable for GSDs with sensitive stomachs
- Made with 100% natural ingredients
- Free from grains and gluten
- Can cause allergic reactions in some dogs
- Can cause gas
7. Iams Proactive Health Minichunks Dry Dog Food
IAMS Adult Minichunks Small Kibble High Protein Dry Dog Food with Real Chicken, 30 lb. Bag
A healthy dog is as healthy as what it eats. And, if your pick for puppy food for German Shepherd happens to be Iams, then your GSD is going to be a happy dog. You see, the farm-sourced chicken makes for a tasty meal. And, the wholesome fiber from the natural veggies boosts metabolism and eases digestion.
The blend has plentiful vitamins and minerals for a shinier coat, strong muscles and bones, and sharper eyesight. And, the DHA promotes brain development. Lastly, the crunchy kibble design makes for removing plaque, bad breath, and chewing for more jaw power.
- Made from farm-raised chicken
- Contains wholesome fibers for healthy digestion
- Has DHA for cognitive development
- Inconsistent pricing
- Can cause gas
8. Eagle Pack Power Adult Dry Dog Food
Eagle Pack Power Adult Dry Dog Food, 40-lb bag
Eagle Pack provides holistic nutrition for adult dogs. It is specifically made for highly active or working dogs. This dog food contains balanced fats, carbohydrates, and protein to help maintain toned muscle, stamina, and healthy weight.
It also contains glucosamine for a healthier joint. This dry dog food contains probiotics for healthier digestion. It supports healthy energy release and sustained endurance in working dogs. It is free from wheat, corn, meat by-products, artificial flavors, colors, and preservatives.
- Contains high-quality protein
- Free from artificial colors, flavors, and preservatives
- Suitable for working or active dogs
- Not for dogs with grain allergies
- Small kibble for large dogs
9. Holistic Select Large & Giant Breed Adult
Holistic Select Large & Giant Breed Adult Health Chicken Meal & Oatmeal Recipe Dry Dog Food, 30-lb bag
Holistic is specifically formulated for large and giant dog breeds. It promotes overall gut health with its probiotic content, which includes metabolism. It is rich in omega-3 fatty acids that promote healthier coats and skin.
This dog food also contains glucosamine for healthier hips and joints. Its taurine content promotes a healthy heart. This dry dog food is highly palatable, high-quality, and rich in digestive enzymes.
- Specifically formulated for large dog breeds
- Great for highly active dogs
- Promotes healthy skin and coat
- Kibble size is small for some dogs
- Can cause allergic reactions to some dogs
10. Dr. Gary's Best Breed Holistic German Dry Dog Food
Dr. Gary’s Best Breed Holistic German Dry Dog Food
Dr. Gary‘s holistic dog food is crafted for German Shepherd dogs. It provides a complete and balanced nutrition for large breed dogs like the GSDs. It is made with real chicken and menhaden fish as the main protein sources.
This dog food is rich in omega-3 and 6 fatty acids for healthier skin and coat. It also contains high-quality fiber that helps maintain gastrointestinal health and functions. Additionally, it contains green-lipped sea mussels from New Zealand to support joint health. Its essential vitamins boosts immunity.
- Breed-specific diet
- Ideal for dogs with sensitive stomachs
- Free from fillers
- Kibble size is small
- Some bags have lots of crumbs
11. VICTOR Purpose Nutra Pro Dry Dog Food
VICTOR Purpose Nutra Pro Dry Dog Food
Another nutritional dog food for GSDs is the Victor Purpose Nutra Pro. It is sourced and made in the USA. It is composed of 92% meat protein from premium quality chicken meat. To help maintain your dog’s proper weight, it contains low carbs and high protein.
This dry dog food is rich in essential vitamins, minerals, and fatty acids. With its unique VPRO blend, your GSD will have a healthier immunity and digestive system. It is also free from gluten that can cause allergic reaction to your dogs.
- Suitable for all breeds and sizes
- High in protein
- Supports healthy digestion
- Can cause allergic reactions to some dogs
- Some dogs released more poop than usual
12. Merrick Grain-Free Large Breed Dry Dog Food Real Chicken & Sweet Potato Recipe
Merrick Grain-Free Large Breed Dry Dog Food Real Chicken & Sweet Potato Recipe, 22-lb bag
Merrick is a grain-free dry dog food made with real deboned chicken and sweet potato. It is specifically formulated for large breed adult dogs. This nutrient-dense dog food contains 60% protein and healthy fats which helps maintain healthy weight and increased energy.
It also contains 40% produce, vitamins, minerals, fiber, and other organic ingredients. 80% of its protein comes from healthy animal sources which makes it more flavorful for your dog. Additionally, it contains chondroitin and glucosamine for healthier joints and hips. Its essential amino acids help maintain shiny and lustrous coat.
- Specifically formulated for large and giant breeds
- Gluten and grain-free
- Provides superior nutrients
- Small kibble size
- There’s a change in the formula
The Modern German Shepherd
When you think of a German Shepherd, a canine with a wolf-like appearance comes to mind. Most people find German shepherds to be an intimidating breed, fierce in looks and personality. In truth, there are many different types of German Shepherds and make for very faithful companions that love to lead. They are a very zealous and energetic breed. Your German shepherd pup will play, bounce, run and fetch all day long if you will allow it.
It’s a breed of dogs that starts with being a little over one pound. But, by the first year, they can gain weight up to 60 pounds. They are not a breed prone to obesity, either. They are a very active breed of dogs. Besides, GSDs have such a superior aptitude for training and are so intelligent that you will find them performing many different jobs.
German Shepherds make superb search and rescue dogs. You’ll find them providing disability help as well as working with the police and in military roles.
German Shepherd Puppies' Dietary Needs
Curious, confident, courageous, and vastly cuddly, these canines will gladly risk their lives to save yours. But, German shepherds usually need proper care and attention as they undergo drastic growth in the initial year of their life. Any neglect of nutritional needs results in serious health complications in their adulthood.
To begin with, you have to understand that GSDs are a large breed of dogs. So, it would be best if you gave them a large breed formula. You see, GSDs need extra minerals, vitamins, carbohydrates, and calcium. These nutrients support a healthy joint structure and promote buccal growth and a shiny coat. They also need a higher calorie intake as they tend to burn off the energy quickly. The German shepherd puppy sprouts super fast in the first eight months of their lives. That is when they need you to give them extra TLC.
On average, the GSD puppy requires 500 calories a day. And, by the time the puppy is 15 months, it needs 1600 calories. The protein intake should be around 18% to 22%. Moreover, there should be about 8-12% fat content in the diet to sustain the growth of your doggy.German Shepherds need proper nutrition.
Food for German Shepherd Puppies: FAQ
There is always the possibility that pet guardians have misconceptions about their canine’s diet. Do not fret, as those misgivings will be cleared here.
How many calories does a puppy German Shepherd need?
An intake of 500 calories per day is suitable for German Shepherd puppies. Yet, as the pup grows older, the number of meals is fewer, and the calorie intake increased to 1600 calories around fifteen months of age. Overfeeding your Shepherd can lead to obesity while being underfed can affect its growth – that’s why you should always consult with your local vet about your pet’s nutritional intake.
How often should you feed my German Shepherd puppy?
Your sweet little fluff ball needs to be fed three to four times a day until four months of age. But, it is a good idea to practice restraint. Overfeeding German Shepherds can lead to indigestion and diarrhea.
And don’t forget to increase your puppy’s calorie intake as it grows older. Remember, your GSD loves to sweat it all off with much-needed physical exertion.
What types of food are good for German Shepherds?
Proteins are a must for German Shepherds. They need it for their joint, muscle, and bone buildup. But, they also have other needs like vitamins and minerals. So, give your doggo choices it will appreciate. Fruits and veggies make wholesome options with plentiful nutrients. Try out apples, bananas, and peaches with the pits. And, give your pupper some broccoli too.
Other than that, you can choose between dry dog food, dry kibbles, or wet dog food. It’s a smart choice to go for the healthiest choice in scrumptious flavors that your dog will enjoy eating and stay fit. With the little ones, go for moist options or smaller-sized kibble to avoid choking hazards.
What diseases are German Shepherds prone to?
German Shepherds are susceptible to joint problems. You’ll find that malnutrition in puppyhood can lead to elbow or hip dysplasia in adult dogs. Also, GSDs have specific allergies indicating weaker tummies, so keep that in mind when you pick out their dry food.
Are German Shepherds hypoallergenic?
GSDs are not hypoallergenic. If anything, the double coat of GSDs is prone to quite a lot of shedding. However, the good news is that you can control your pet’s shedding through regular grooming and by taking care of its diet (Omega 3 Fatty acid supplements, etc.). Although you are severely allergic to dog or cat fur, you might have a problem with your German Shepherd pup as the fur will trigger your allergy.
German Shepherd Puppies are as precious as babies and need just as much love and nurturing. So, it is your job as an animal lover or a potential pet parent to give your puppy the attention it deserves. And, never settle for the second-best when it comes to your doggo’s nutrition. Doing so may endanger your pet’s health and can lead to problems in adulthood. Apart from that, we’re sure you’ll do your very best to look after your GSD.
How to feed a German shepherd: rules for feeding an adult shepherdHow to feed a German shepherd: rules for feeding an adult shepherd
The German Shepherd is considered one of the most popular and widespread breeds. These are excellent guards, strong and hardy animals. However, this breed has a very sensitive digestive system, and an unbalanced diet often causes intestinal upset.
To avoid these problems, breeders need to carefully consider the menu for their four-legged pet. Consider what to feed the German Shepherd, how often and how much food should be given.
- German Shepherd Feeding Principles
- German Shepherd Nutrition
- What to feed a shepherd dog
- Industrial feed
- Natural nutrition
- How many times a day to feed a German Shepherd
- Nutrition for dogs with special needs
- Vitamins and mineral supplements
- What foods should not be given to a shepherd dog
- What to feed puppies
- Peculiarities of breed
- General Feeding Rules for German Shepherd Puppy
- What to choose - industrial and natural food?
- Peculiarities of feeding by months
- Norm and power plan
- Food options for German Shepherd puppies
German Shepherd Feeding Principles
An adult Shepherd is a large active pet. In order for the dog to remain healthy and energetic, it is necessary to strictly observe the chosen type of food. An adult pet is considered after reaching 1 year. It is during this period that the type and diet is formed, which the breeder will have to observe until the dog reaches old age.
How to properly feed a German Shepherd? The composition of the diet should include the following elements:
- Protein - 50%: meat, offal, dairy products, eggs;
- Carbohydrates - 30%: cereals and vegetables, fruits;
- Fats - 20%: derived from animal and vegetable products.
The ratio of the listed ingredients in the daily diet can be changed, depending on the pet's lifestyle. For example, active dogs need more carbohydrates, calm animals can reduce their fat content.
Proper diet involves feeding the dog right after the walk. The time of eating should not exceed 20 minutes. The food remaining in the bowl is thrown away, and the one-time portion is reduced.
German Shepherd Nutrition
Representatives of this breed actively grow and develop up to 12 months. During this period, dogs require enhanced nutrition, which is necessary for the proper formation of muscles and bones. After reaching 1 year, the diet changes. Consider how the accents are correctly shifted depending on the age of the dog.
- Until the age of 3, the dog continues to build muscle mass, becomes more calm and balanced. At this age, you can reduce the consumption of fats and carbohydrates, but give more protein, mineral supplements and vitamins.
- Age 3-6 years. This is canine maturity, when a pet develops certain habits and favorite foods. Therefore, the nutrition of the shepherd dog becomes uniform, a sharp change in diet is not allowed. When transferring a dog to another food, the novelty is gradually added to the usual portion in order to avoid intestinal upset and allergic reactions.
- Age 6-12 years. Elderly shepherds are recommended to give food rich in protein, phosphorus and calcium. In addition, it is useful to give magnesium and vitamin complexes. To reduce the risks of diseases of the musculoskeletal system, drugs containing chronoprotectors are included in the diet. This component helps to strengthen bone and cartilage tissues.
What to feed a shepherd dog
Veterinarians offer 2 main types of feeding: natural food and industrial food. Each of the options has its own characteristics. The owner decides how to properly feed a German Shepherd, but you need to remember: you can’t change and mix a straight woman and a ready-made menu!
Ready rations are divided into canned meat and dry granulated feed. The advantage of this type of nutrition is simplicity and balance: manufacturers develop portions taking into account the age and physiological needs of dogs, so in most cases, the pet does not need to be additionally fed with vitamins.
All recipes are veterinarian designed and contain carefully measured proportions of proteins, carbohydrates and fats. Ready-made diets attract breeders with a wide range of lines: there is special food for large dogs, for a specific breed, and even veterinary lines for dogs with diseases.
Wet food benefits:
- The product is as close to natural nutrition as possible;
- Contains nutrient broth essential for proper digestion;
- Are issued in a convenient portion packing;
- High palatability.
The benefits of dry diets:
- Solid structure to help strengthen teeth;
- Contribute to full saturation: the dog often swallows soft food without chewing;
- Economy consumption;
- Long shelf life when opened.
What kind of food to feed a shepherd dog is up to the breeder. When choosing a ready-made menu, doctors recommend combining dry and wet diets.
Homemade soups and cereals. This diet option helps to diversify the pet's menu and, according to many shepherd dog owners, is cheaper than ready-made feeds. However, here the balance of the diet falls entirely on the shoulders of the owner.
To avoid indigestion, a serving of natural products should include the following ingredients:
- Meat - chicken, beef, lean pork, rabbit meat;
- Fish - pollock, flounder, tuna;
- Eggs - chicken, quail and turkey;
- Milk - natural yoghurts, cottage cheese, fermented baked milk;
- Kashi - buckwheat, oatmeal, barley;
- Vegetables - carrots, courgettes, beets, celery;
- Greens - parsley and spinach;
- Fruit - apricots, watermelon pulp.
How many times a day to feed a German Shepherd
How often to feed a pet? The recommended feeding scheme is twice a day - in the morning and in the evening. It is better not to disturb the established diet.
The nutritional norm of an adult German Shepherd depends on what it is fed: natural or ready-made rations. When feeding with natural food, the recommended daily intake of food is 1.5 liters. This portion is divided into 2 parts.
When choosing industrial feed, follow the manufacturer's instructions on the packaging.
Nutrition for dogs with special needs
A pregnant shepherd dog is transferred to 3 meals a day, starting from the second month of intrauterine gestation. The basis of the diet should be bone meal, dairy products and fresh meat. This principle of compiling the menu is also observed during lactation.
Dogs that have had an illness or surgery are placed on a low-calorie diet. During the rehabilitation period, pets do not differ in physical activity, therefore, in order to exclude the possibility of obesity, the diet is based on lean meats, dairy products, and vegetables.
Older dogs are advised to give vegetable porridge, foods rich in vitamins and protein.
Vitamins and Mineral Supplements
German Shepherds of all ages need the following vitamins for full development:
- Ascorbic acid;
- Folic acid;
- Nicotinic acid.
Of the bioactive complexes, we can recommend Nutri-Vet, Kanvit and Beaphar.
Under no circumstances should shepherd dogs be given the following foods:
- Sausages and sausages;
- Long bones;
- Fatty meats, eg lamb;
- River fish, raw;
- Semolina, millet and barley;
- All legumes;
- Sweet, fatty and smoked;
- Any marination;
Show all item
What is the best food for a German Shepherd puppy? It is very important to know what to feed a German Shepherd puppy, at what age and what absolutely should not be given to him.Balanced feeding from puppyhood contributes to the proper formation and development of the musculoskeletal system, joints, normalization of the work of all internal organs, immune and other systems.
Peculiarities of the breed
The main standards of the breed are erect ears, developed long limbs, pronounced hocks. The performance characteristics of the pet depend on the correct development and proportionality of the body, so it is very important to choose a balanced healthy diet, supplement it with vitamins and microelements. It is necessary to select food for German Shepherd puppies or natural products, taking into account the age, individual characteristics of the dog. The optimal norm and schedule of food intake, which must be adhered to, is determined.
General rules for feeding a German Shepherd puppy
- When feeding a German Shepherd puppy (2-4 months), care must be taken that the food is not cold or too hot. The best option is food at room temperature.
- Supervise the correct position of the dog when feeding, so that he does not lean too low. During active growth, sometimes you need to be near your pet in order to adjust the height of the bowl to a comfortable level for the dog. The puppy's head should be parallel to the floor during feeding, otherwise his spine may be deformed.
- When forming the feeding regime, it is necessary to select such a time that 1.5-2 hours pass after an active walk. After eating, you need to give your little four-legged friend a rest for 2-3 hours. If you walk the baby immediately after eating, she may develop intestinal volvulus.
- 20 minutes after the start of feeding, remove the bowl so that the puppy does not overeat (even if the pet has not finished eating everything).
- After eating, the remains of food from the muzzle of the dog should be wiped with a napkin.
For feeding, it is recommended to purchase a metal or nickel-plated bowl with an adjustable base. After eating, the bowl should be washed.
What to choose - industrial and natural food?
What to feed a two-month-old German Shepherd puppy? There are options: cook natural products or give ready-made food. It is quite difficult to feed a “German” with a straight woman, because. all ingredients must be fresh, correctly selected for the content of proteins, fats and carbohydrates.
You cannot mix canned food and natural food, you need to choose one thing.
Dry food starts to be given to the pet from 3-4 months. Ready-made feeds of holistic and super-premium classes have a high percentage of animal protein, useful omega acids, vitamins and trace elements to strengthen the ODS, joints, coat, teeth and claws.
Features of feeding by months
To find out how to properly feed a German Shepherd puppy, ask the breeder what he was given in the first months of life. The first 10 days in a new place he is fed with food to which he is accustomed, then gradually he can be transferred to another diet. A sudden change in diet can lead to digestive disorders. Food should be warm, mushy or in small pieces.
Features of feeding by months:
- 1 month. If possible, up to a month, puppies should be fed with mother's milk, in case of its absence - with milk (goat / cow), milk mixtures. The number of feedings is 5-6 times a day.
- 2 months. “Adult” food is gradually introduced - oatmeal and rice porridge, twisted boiled meat, vegetable purees or ready-made wet food. Feed small pets 4-5 times a day.
- 3-4 months. You can transfer the baby to ready-made food: dry or soft. At this age, the pet's joints and ligaments are actively developing, teeth are changing, so you should choose calcium-containing foods. The number of meals - 4 times a day.
- 5-6 months. The puppy is transferred to 3 meals a day, and the portion increases to 750-800 ml. In order for the skeleton and posture to form correctly, chondroprotectors (glucosamine and chondroitin sulfate) are included in the diet, for the timely change of milk teeth, the dog needs to gnaw the brain bones.
- Feeding up to 1 year. From six months, a pet can be transferred to 2 meals a day, increasing the amount of food to 1.2-1.5 liters.
Do not give your dog smoked, fried, salty foods, sweets, chocolate, fatty meat, tubular bones. It is forbidden to give spoiled and stale food.
Norm and diet plan
The nutritional norm of a German Shepherd puppy is determined taking into account the weight of the pet, but you also need to monitor its build. If the dog is too thin, it means that she does not have enough food (or parasites have wound up in her), being overweight indicates overfeeding. Eating a portion too quickly can also indicate that the dog is not full.
The feeding pattern is determined taking into account the amount of feeding per day. No need to accustom to night eating. Time is distributed at regular intervals between feedings (the maximum gap is 8 hours). The first meal of the puppy up to six months can be set at 7 am, the last - at 10 pm.
Information on how much dry food to give a puppy is indicated on the package (the higher the energy value of the product, the smaller the portion size).
Food options for German Shepherd puppies
To choose the best food, you need to consider the dog's age, activity level, individual health characteristics. Manufacturers offer feed in different price segments.
German Shepherd puppies are suitable for Royal Canin, Proplan, Akana, Farmina. Especially worth mentioning is Royal Canin. This brand was originally created specifically for German Shepherds.
If you prefer other brands, you should choose rations designed specifically for puppies of large breeds of dogs.
The composition of the finished menu should correspond to the needs of the dog, which differ at different ages. If your pet has allergies, health problems, or is overweight, you should contact your veterinarian. Only a doctor can determine what kind of food to feed the animal. It is also necessary to add complexes of vitamins and microelements to the pet's menu.
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What to feed a German Shepherd puppy
- How to feed
- Place of eating
- Daily food intake and frequency of feeding
- Weight Gain Rates by Age
- Healthy Supplements
- Dry and Wet Foods
The German Shepherd is a fairly large breed. In order for the dog to grow strong and healthy, to develop well, you need to know how to feed a German Shepherd puppy and pay special attention to this. At 2 months, they begin to feed with natural food.
How to properly feed
Feeding a puppy must be organized correctly. First of all, it is necessary to allocate a special place and equip it with everything necessary. There are 2 options for pet food: traditional food and prepared food. In the first case, the owner prepares the food, in the second case, he acquires special ready-made feeds: dry or wet.
Traditional natural food is healthy, but it takes a lot of time to cook. This complicates the feeding procedure, not every dog owner has enough time. When organizing a natural menu for a German Shepherd puppy, you should take into account the following rules:
- Natural meat must be present in the puppy's menu. It contains protein that is good for dogs. But do not give too much meat, it is better to divide the daily allowance into several portions and offer the animal during the day.
- Offal can be introduced from 4 months of age.
- Fish is good for dogs in moderation. It contains minerals and other useful substances, but an excess of fish products is harmful. This can lead to indigestion.
- Tubular bones are dangerous, their fragments can injure the walls of the stomach. Boiled bones are also undesirable, they cause constipation.
- Large bones begin to enter the menu from a month and a half, always raw.
- Eggs only boiled.
- Dairy products are allowed for German Shepherds, but in limited quantities. It is permissible to give cottage cheese and kefir, but it is better not to pour milk for an animal, it is poorly absorbed.
- Cereals must be present in the menu, a German Shepherd puppy is boiled oatmeal, buckwheat, millet and rice, but you don’t need to feed semolina, it clogs the stomach.
- It is better to choose rye or gray varieties of bread, croutons are good. Pasta is not recommended for a puppy.
- Starting from a month and a half, the diet is supplemented with vegetables and fruits. They should be finely chopped or grated. Useful: carrots, beets, cabbage, greens, but it is better not to mix different vegetables in one feeding. In order for vitamins to be well absorbed, sour cream or a small amount of vegetable oil is added to vegetables.
- Food should not be excessively hot or cold, the puppy is fed food at room temperature.
Natural nutrition will need to be supplemented with vitamin complexes. What vitamins are good for a dog, the veterinarian will advise. A and D in excess are harmful to the body. An overestimated rate of calcium causes a violation of the process of bone formation. Sausage, pickles and smoked meats, as well as sweets, chocolate and pastries are harmful to dogs.
Dry and canned dog food is a popular and convenient form of feeding at home and on the go. They are stored for a long time, it does not take much time to prepare them.
Do not overfeed the puppy. Food must be given without fail after a walk, and after feeding, he must rest, active games and movements should be avoided. If you do not follow this rule of nutrition, the risk of intestinal volvulus increases. This phenomenon is typical for the German Shepherd breed.
Eating area must be properly equipped. It is better to purchase a special bowl stand so that you can adjust the height of the stand as your puppy grows. The dog should not tilt its head low while eating, this can cause a curved spine. The normal neck angle is 60 degrees. The front legs are straight. At the same time, they should not slip while eating, so you need to lay a rubber mat on the floor where the puppy eats.
The dog bowl should be made of quality materials. The best option is stainless steel. Fired ceramics are also suitable.
The puppy should always have access to fresh water. It is necessary to monitor its cleanliness and change it as it becomes dirty. It is advisable to pour clean water three times a day. Drinking water is given at room temperature. After each meal, dog dishes should be washed well.
Daily food intake and feeding frequency
Puppy period is a moment of active growth. The puppy grows and develops, when he becomes an adult, he will be 80 times larger than when he was a child. Overfeeding should not be allowed, but it is just as important that the dog gets enough food. There is a certain diet for babies. In a month, the puppy is fed with mother's milk, from two months they begin to gradually transfer it to natural feeding. How many times to feed a puppy depends on its age:
- 1.5 months - six meals a day, 1 glass of food is required at one time;
- 2 - 3 months - the puppy is fed 5 times, at one meal - one and a half glasses of food;
- from 3 to 6 months the puppy already needs food in the amount of 1.5 liters, the dog is fed 4 times a day;
- From 6 months to one year, the dog is given 1.5 liters of food three times a day.
When a shepherd is 1 year old, she is already considered an adult. At this age, a shepherd dog will need to be fed only twice a day. You need to feed the animal at the same time, it is not recommended to break the regime. The smaller the puppy, the more strictly it should be observed.
It is very important to know how much to eat and to strictly dose food intake, especially in puppyhood. If the puppy eats a lot, his skeleton will not form correctly, the process of building muscle mass will be disrupted.
Norms of weight gain by age
German Shepherd puppies grow for a long time, only at two years old the dog stops growing, the development of the animal will last up to three years. Normally, the weight gain of a shepherd cub by months is as follows:
- 1 month - from 2.5 to 4 kg;
- 2 months - 6 to 9 kg;
- 3 months - 10 to 16 kg;
- 4 months - 15 to 20 kg;
- 5 months - 18 to 26 kg;
- 6 months - 19 to 28 kg;
- 8 months - 20 to 32 kg;
- 1 year - 21 to 37 kg;
- 2 years - 22 to 40 kg.
The weight of an adult German Shepherd is about 40 kg. Tracking weight changes by months, comparing them with the norm, we can conclude whether the dog is eating enough. Deviations from the norm within 15% of the given indicators are permissible.
The greatest activity in weight gain is observed at 1 month of life. 3 months after birth, the cub weighs three times more, and a month later it is already five times more.
In order for a dog to grow up healthy, it needs vitamin and mineral supplements. There are not enough such substances in the feed, so they are introduced additionally. The German Shepherd needs the following vitamins:
- Vitamin A. It is present in carrots, liver, apples. This substance stimulates the immune system.
- Vitamins of group B. Provide the body with essential fats, proteins and carbohydrates. They have a positive effect on metabolic processes, improve the condition of the coat.
- Vitamin C. Produced in the dog's body in sufficient quantities, with its deficiency, immunity suffers, the condition of the bone tissue worsens.
- Vitamin D. Its deficiency leads to the development of rickets. The substance is found in food of animal origin.
- Vitamin E. Regulates hormonal balance, prevents heart disease, prevents muscle atrophy.
- Vitamin K. Good for blood, improves its clotting, it is found in lettuce and cabbage.
Puppies need minerals. Calcium and copper are responsible for the development of the skeleton. Iron improves blood composition. Iodine improves metabolism, regulates the function of the thyroid gland. Zinc improves the condition of the animal's coat.
Pet stores sell specialized preparations for puppies, which include useful vitamins and minerals. Before buying this or that product as an additional food for a German shepherd, you should consult a veterinarian.
Dry and wet food
German Shepherds are given ready-made food: dry or wet canned food. If the decision is made to feed the puppy with ready-made food, you should switch to a new food after one month. When choosing products, it is necessary to take into account the class of feed. Economy and premium options are not desirable, they contain chemicals and flavor enhancers. The best option for German Shepherd puppies is super premium food. This is a natural product of excellent quality. A good choice would be Arcana, Proplan, Nutro, Genesis, Royal Canin.
Dry foods are easy to use, they contain all useful elements in a balanced amount. Additional vitamins and minerals will not be required to give the puppy.
Dry food must contain:
- vegetable protein;
- crude fiber - tomato or apple pomace;
- minerals and vitamins.
Dry food may contain flavors or colors. It is required to choose products without them.
Quality puppy food without dyes should not be red or green. Should not contain soy or beans. If the dog is fed dry food, it is necessary to ensure that the animal always has plenty of clean drinking water.