How To Choose The Best Food For Your German Shepherd
As previously mentioned, dogs of all ages, sizes, and activity levels all have different requirements. A lactating dam will need nutrients closer to that of a puppy than a full-grown adult male working dog.
There are certain kibbles that are suitable for all life stages that can help you keep your dog in optimum health with minimum effort.
The Best Food For German Shepherd Puppies
The German shepherd is a large breed dog, and large breed dogs need to get off to a healthy start in order to protect their growing joints. If they get too much calcium when they are young, large breed dogs’ bones can develop incorrectly, leading to permanent hip and joint issues.
Make sure to feed your German shepherd puppy a large breed puppy food to make sure they’re getting the correct amount of calcium. Also look for a formula that contains DHA, a fatty acid that contributes to healthy brain development.
Suggestions For Choosing A Veterinarian
Ask friends and neighbours who their veterinarian is.
Ask your breeder for his/her recommendation. You may find many that they all rave about the same one! Call the veterinarian you select before your German Shepherd puppy arrives in order to book an appointment for the day following his arrival.
Reputable breeders will encourage you to take your puppy to the veterinarian and will give you a record of any vaccines, wormings, and other health clearances that may have been performed.
YOUR CATDO Introduce them right away and understand that your puppy needs to learn to respect the catDO Have your cat in the same room as the rest of you when puppy arrivesDON’T hold one animal up to the otherDON’T intervene between their greeting – unless things are going very poorlyYOUR DOGIf you have a dog-friendly dog, DO have them meet on neutral territoryDO keep the older dog on a loose leash during introductionDON’T leave puppy and older dog unsupervised until the puppy is much olderDO ensure puppy is learning his boundaries with your older dogDO watch for signs of stress and control the environment when you need to
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Where Can You Get A German Shepherd Puppy For Free
- The Humane Society and ASPCA are additionally two incredible hotspots for receiving German Shepherd young puppies.
- Contact an animal shelter to see whether they have a German shepherd puppy accessible for appropriation.
- You can get a canine for free or at a negligible expense to cover fix and immunization B
Meal Plan And Feeding Guide
|Current ADULT Weight|
|3 3/4 4 1/2 cups per day|
|90 pounds||4 1/2 5 1/4 cups per day|
The diet of a German Shepherd must take into account the size of the dog, its level of activity and exercise, along with any preexisting conditions that might need special consideration.
Therefore, if you want to know how much your German Shepherd needs to eat, youll need to know their age, weight, and activity levels. Typically a full-grown German Shepherd should eat at least 3 cups of food per day, but may eat upwards of 5 cups of food per day or more if they are fairly large and routinely active.
Let these cup measurements be your guide, but dont let them dictate the exact cups of food to feed your German Shepherd.
Your dogs health will flourish if you adjust the cups based on your dogs specific nutritional and caloric needs.
Now, lets take a look at what really is the best food to feed a German Shepherd.
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Features Of German Shepherd Puppy
There are some features of German shepherd puppy dogs, which follow below.
- It has a double coat which is comprised of thick undercoat in it, also has a straight outer coat.
- Hair of German Shepherd is usually tan and black or red and also black in color and also shed in color the other rarer color of puppies are includes all black all white and also the liver and blue as well.
German Shepherds With Sensitive Stomachs
The German Shepherd dog, like many pure-bred dogs, can be predisposed to certain diseases. Some of these diseases may require a special diet for the GSD. Specifically, if you have concerns about his digestive health, work closely with your veterinarian to make sure your dog gets what he needs and hopefully, a proper diagnosis.
Notable diseases that are prevalent in this breed and which may affect the type of best dog food for German Shepherds you choose include:
- inflammatory bowel disease
- exocrine pancreatic insufficiency
- antibiotic-responsive diarrhea )
These diseases tend to cause GSDs to lose weight or not be able to gain weight effectively. In general, small, frequent meals are best for dogs with sensitive stomachs. Ask your veterinarian about diets like Royal Canin Gastrointestinal High Energy Dog Food, as it may help your GSD gain weight if he has those problems.
There’s also an article listing 15 best sensitive stomach dog foods, and a lot of these can be applicable for GSDs with a stomach upset or diseases. Bring those names up with your vet. I recommend you also read this article on upset stomachs from Dana Brown, DVM.
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Royal Canin German Shepherd Puppy
Image courtesy Royal Canin
Royal Canin German Shepherd Puppy is a dry dog food that’s specifically designed for puppies up to 15 months old.
This recipe includes DHA for brain development, calcium and phosphorus for bone growth, and antioxidants to support the immune system. It’s also free of artificial colors, flavors, and preservatives.
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.
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Wellness Core Grain Free Puppy Food
Top ingredients: Deboned Chicken, Chicken Meal, Turkey MealType: Dry
Fortified with antioxidants, probiotics, omega fatty acids, and Glucosamine, this formula will ensure that your puppy grows steadily and healthily.
The large kibble encourages proper chewing, which can minimize risk of bloat. The downside is that it can get slightly pricey.
German Shepherd Puppy Diet
Early in life, puppies must eat often.
Find out why German Shepherd puppies have different calorie and diet requirements that you need to know. You must feed a puppy food specially formulated for large-breed puppies to avoid an imbalance in their diets.
Due to their rapid growth, any diet mistakes made during puppyhood will have more severe, even irreversible and lifelong, consequences.
Good puppy food has advantages over adult dog food because it has been specially formulated for a puppys demanding nutritional requirements. More importantly, puppy foods contain the appropriate amount of calcium.
A great recommendation for German Shepherd puppies that has the ideal protein and DHA is:
Iams ProActive Health Smart Puppy Large Breed Dry Dog Food
If you need to introduce a new diet do so over the course of a week, starting with replacing only a small amount of the current food with the new food. Then, gradually, increase the proportion of the new food daily until you give your dog only the new food.
Daily food quantities are best divided out across the number of meals you feed per day.
Heres a quick overview of feeding a German Shepherd puppy.
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The Best Food For Adult German Shepherds
Adult German shepherds need an adult dog food or a food formulated for all life stages. You’ll have a lot more choice when it comes to the nutritional profile in adult dog recipes.
Large breed puppies need food with a moderate amount of protein and a modest amount of fat. But some adults may benefit from higher protein content and fat content it all depends on your dog’s activity level. Active dogs and dogs with higher energy levels do well on higher protein diets because it helps them build muscles.
Senior dogs often do better on higher fiber foods. They may also benefit from low-calorie foods, or you can simply reduce the serving size on their standard dog food.
Bloat is a common health issue for German shepherds. You may help reduce their risk by feeding your dog wet food that doesn’t contain animal fats, like chicken fat, in the first four ingredients.
Some German shepherds also suffer from food allergies. A food allergy test can help you determine what your dog is allergic to so you can choose the right recipe for their needs.
Best Homemade Cooking Practices
With these tips, you can ensure that your German Shepherds meals are safe and nutritious.
- Never use unsafe or toxic ingredients for dogs
- Use only boneless meats
- Cook all animal products thoroughly to kill harmful bacteria
- Cook all grains, beans, and starchy vegetables to make them easier to digest
- Research every ingredient before using it for safety
- Follow recipes as instructed
- Add supplements to their diet if needed
- Run any questions by a vet nutritionist
NOTE: When in doubt, ALWAYS research an ingredient. You dont want to add food that is toxic to dogs.
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What Are The Benefits Of Raw Eggs For Dogs
There are a few potential benefits of feeding raw eggs to dogs. Some people believe that raw eggs can help increase a dog’s energy levels, improve their coat, and even help with joint pain. While there is some anecdotal evidence to support these claims, there is no scientific evidence that raw eggs offer any health benefits for dogs.
Purina Pro Plan Sensitive Skin And Sensitive Stomach
Image courtesy Purina
Purina has been in operation for more than 85 years and produces a wide range of goods. The Purina Pro Plan FOCUS Sensitive Skin & Stomach is one of their most popular, with over 2,500 positive reviews.
You can feed your dog either dry or wet food, and he may sample two distinct flavor profiles: rice and oatmeal for salmon. This recipe is high in protein and has a total of 30% dry basis protein content, primarily from real meats with no poultry by-product meal.
Because it contains no allergens like wheat, corn, or soy, there’s less of a chance that your dog will suffer an upset stomach. It also includes omega-3 and -6 fatty acids, which help to promote skin, coat, and joint health.
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Best Dog Food For German Shepherd Puppies
Speaking of vital elements that must be present in dog food, heres 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.
Adult German Shepherd Nutrients
Adult German Shepherds also need age-appropriate food, so it is important that when he reaches the age of 15 months or so, he should be transitioned from a large breed puppy formula to adult formula as his nutrient requirements change . A high-quality adult kibble should include 18% to 24% protein and around 14% fat content.
Similar to the Siberian Huskys food needs, an average adult German Shepherd should consume anywhere between 1,700 calories and 2,400 calories a day, dependent on his size and energy levels. If he is a less active pup or an elderly dog, then he will need much less energy, and he should only consume between 1,300 and 1,600 calories.
Both adult and puppy German Shepherds generally do better on grain-free kibble as they are commonly allergic, or intolerant to, grains and most Veterinarians would suggest putting your pup on this straight away to save any dietary upset or the need to change his diet in the future. However, not all owners and experts agree on a totally grain-free diet, so this is a personal choice as there are pros and cons to each argument, so therefore we have included a mix of grain-free and grain inclusive recommendations.
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Food & German Shepherd Health: Why Feed Homemade
German Shepherds are notorious for developing food allergies and hypersensitivities despite being wonderful dogs. A study published in BMC Veterinary Research Journal found that German Shepherds are at a high risk of developing cutaneous adverse food reactions , or in simpler terms, dog food allergies.
CAFR can be responsible for many skin allergy issues like atopic dermatitis. Chronic allergic reactions are accompanied by excessive scratching, itching, and biting. Eventually, this could lead to secondary bacterial or yeast infections in your GSD. Unfortunately, a lot of German Shepherd allergies arise from commercial dog food. Kibble ingredients like protein sources, high levels of animal fat, preservatives, meat by-products, food coloring, grains, and fillers contribute to more allergies in this breed.
GSDs are predisposed to degenerative myelopathy, elbow and hip dysplasia, and osteoarthritis. Because German Shepherds are prone to these skeletal and bone problems, GSDs need to maintain a healthy weight. An obese German Shepherd may have an increased risk of developing osteoarthritis and other joint disorders because the excess weight puts more strain on their joints, bone structure, and back . It could also potentially lead to degenerative myelopathy in GSDs.
Remember that even grain-free kibbles with high-quality ingredients can have high levels of starchy and bad carbs that contribute to the pet obesity epidemic.
Hip Or Elbow Dysplasia
Hip and elbow dysplasia are caused by malformation of the joints. These problems are highly genetic. However, growing too quickly can make the conditions worse.
Thats one reason why its so important to monitor the protein levels in your German Shepherd puppys food. Too much protein now can lead to a lifetime of pain down the road.
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The Importance Of Good Nutrition
Dog food sales in the United States are a huge business.
There is tremendous competition among manufacturers, with many of these companies goals including making a large profit.
German Shepherd owners must not only stay alert as wise consumers but also monitor the health of their beautiful breed, which is an indicator of the quality of food you feed them.
A healthy German Shepherd has:
- bright, alert eyes
- energy for their daily activities
- and a glossy coat
The old saying You are what you eat is also entirely true for dogs, as well as people. Many German Shepherds can carry on for a long time on a substandard diet, but inadequate nutrition can lead to more than health problems.
In fact, poor nutrition could cause your German Shepherd to develop:
- behavior problems
- susceptibility to disease
- and even shorten their lifespan!
Keep in mind that everything your dog eats becomes part of their daily diet, whether its good for them or not.
Nutrition for your German Shepherd is affected by not only what they eat, but also:
- the foods digestibility
- how their body uses the food
- and what underlying health issues they might have
Lets take a quick peek at the nutrients in your dogs food.
Best Homemade German Shepherd Dog Food Recipes
Weve compiled our favorite German Shepherd homemade dog food recipes to share with you.
Additionally, we give you a special treat recipe for German Shepherds that are tasty and packed with impressive health benefits. This recipe can do a lot for your GSDs health and wellness. It has our favorite secret ingredient, dog CBD oil.
For even more German Shepherd food recipes and cooking options, cookbooks can come in handy to have an array of dog food recipes at your disposal. We love Home Cooking for Your Dog: 75 Holistic Recipes for a Healthier Dog.
Note: Please consult with your pets veterinarian & use personal judgment when applying this information to your dogs diet. The recipes below do not include serving size because portions will vary depending on breed, weight, activity level, age, and your dogs health. A common recommendation is to feed your dog a comparable amount of ounces/cups to what you would usually feed in kibble BUT check with your vet to be certain.
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Best Food For German Shepherd Puppies
The best food for German Shepherd puppies is designed to support the healthy growth and development of a large, active breed. And there will be several that fit these criteria. Your top choices will include those formulated with large breeds in mind, but other options can be just as good.
To reduce the risk of bloat and other digestive system upsets, be sure to introduce new foods to your puppy gradually. The best food for German Shepherd puppies contains the perfect balance and blend of nutrients. As your puppy approaches their first birthday, it will be time to plan their adult diet. You can find out more about that, and other important 1 year milestones, in this article.