Nutritional Requirements For German Shepherd
As your puppy grows into adolescence, his nutritional needs will change. He no longer needs as many nutrients as when he was a puppy. At this age, your dog needs to eat adult formula food, and ideally, the food should also contain joint supplements to keep his arthritis under control.
Check at the dog food bag and see if there is wording such as Complete and balanced nutrition based on AAFCO guidelines for adult maintenance. Most German shepherds that are primarily pets will be fine eating an adult maintenance dog food formula.;
But suppose your German shepherd is a competition dog that actively participates in recreational or competitive canine sports. In that case, he will be better off with a formula for all life stages.
What if your dog is underweight? Consuming a high-calorie dog food together with some additional calories and protein such as cheese and egg might be the best answer. What if your dog is overweight? Then his diet should probably consist of food that provides good nutrition but with more fill so that he can meet all his nutritional needs and lose weight.
How Much To Feed The Adult Raw Fed Dog
You got your first delivery of Doggy Moggy Beef now what?; How much do you feed your dog?
GUIDELINES NOT RULES
When deciding how much to feed your dog, think in terms of guidelines not rules.; Consider all the variables that might affect your decision. Age of the dog and its level of physical activity. ; Are they healthy? Is your dog in heat? Is your dog pregnant/nursing? Are they currently at a healthy weight? Are they lay-abouts indoors or are they roaming the property outdoors?; What other food are they receiving during the day?;
Take for example our Bernedoodle, Philly. It was a no brainer that when she was pregnant and nursing she required more food to fuel her body and her puppies. After the puppies were weaned, it became obvious she was gaining weight and we needed to reduce the amount she was being fed as the demands on her body returned to normal. What worked before, wasnt working any more. We lowered her food intake, added some more exercise and she is now back to her ideal weight.;
The variables in your dogs life can change so its important to keep an eye on your dogs food intake depending on what season of life they are in. The percentages below are guidelines, not rules.; Much like monitoring our own weight and food intake, we need to pay attention to our dogs and take action when it is obvious that changes need to be made.
IS YOUR DOG AN IDEAL WEIGHT
Its important to weigh your dog when you start them on a raw food diet for the following reasons:;
How Much Food Should I Give My German Shepherd Puppy How Often Should I Feed My Puppy
Young puppies need to eat 3-4 times a day in small amounts.
If necessary, you can divide the food into two larger meals, but make sure you are not feeding them so much that they start to vomit.;The puppies will not necessarily be regulated, so it is easy for them to eat ad nauseam and then vomit, you have to regulate the amounts for them.
The food for German shepherd puppies is very different from the adult dog food
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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.
Its 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. Youll find them providing disability help as well as working with the police and in military roles.
When Should You Stop Feeding Your German Shepherd Puppy Food
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 one year old as long as they are not putting on excess weight. German Shepherds usually dont reach their full growth until 18 months of age.
It isnt 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 .
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Pointers For Feeding German Shepherds
Improper feeding practices can lead to serious health problems for German shepherds. Most of the time, these problems linger throughout the dogs lifetime.
You should remember this before doing something reckless, such as altering your German shepherd puppys feeding amount.
An owner is responsible for taking into consideration the age and weight of a German shepherd before feeding them. So here are some tips that can be applied according to your dogs age and weight.
Feeding A German Shepherd Puppy Kibble
There are many good quality kibble diets, but they arent always the best choice.
The FDA recently issued a notice alerting dog owners to a potential increased risk of a serious heart condition. This is called canine dilated cardiomyopathy .
The risk is in dogs eating foods that include peas, lentils, or potatoes instead of grains.
Some of these cases of DCM were in German Shepherds.
The underlying cause of these cases is not clear, but the FDA note suggests that caution should be used in selecting foods with these ingredients for German Shepherds and other large dogs.
Head over to our article on the pros and cons of feeding kibble to know more.
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Do I Need Breed Specific Dog Food For My German Shepherd
Breed specific dog foods have been developed by commercial dog food companies as a point of difference from the all breed dog foods categorised by stage of life, or dog size.
One such current example of breed specific dog food for German Shepherds is the Royal Canin dog food brand.
Royal Canin claims the dog food formula has been developed for the breed specifically.
But, are you better off feeding your GSD a breed specific dog food like Royal Canin?
Instead of picking a specific brand of dog food, you might ask your dogs vet what balance of nutrition and what adequacy of nutrition your dog needs, and picking a dog food based on that.;
So, breed specific brands might not necessarily be better than other brands. It can depend on several factors specific to your individual dogs needs.
Analysing Royal Canin
Some question you might ask about Royal Canin might be:
Does it contain real meat sources?
What sort of grains does it contain corn?;
Does it contain healthy fats?
What sort of benefits does it have over other foods chondroitin sulfate and glucosamine?
You can check out Royal Canin here:
You can go to Royal Canins website and see what benefits they claim in their food for a specific breed, and how theyve formulated their pet food to cater to that.
Dog Food Formulated For Specific Types Of Dog Breeds, Such As Large Breeds
Some companies also produce dog foods for types of dogs, such as large breeds.
Taste Of The Wild High Prairie Canine Grain
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. Its 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.
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What Type Of Dog Food Is Best For German Shepherds
We all want the best for our dogs and want to feed them the best diet for their needs. But, there are so many different types of dog food; which is best for German Shepherds?
The best type of dog food for German Shepherds is dry food, as it is more practical for large breeds. It is also the least expensive, even a high-quality brand. Of course, you can choose to feed other types, such as wet, a mix of dry and wet, raw, home-produced, dehydrated, or freeze-dried.
Most people feed their dogs with commercial dry food or wet canned food, but there are numerous different types, and it isnt easy to know where to start! These are the main different TYPES of food that you can feed your GSD:
- Complete dry foods
- A mix of dry and wet
- Home produced diets
- Complete raw diets
It is a requirement that all commercial dog food be complete and balanced according to the strict guidelines of the AAFCO. Complete means the food must contain all the nutrients required, and balanced means the nutrients present must be in the correct ratios.
The AAFCO also provides information on how to understand a dog food label. Its a pretty heavy read but what it means is dog food will be nutritionally labeled depending on a dogs life stage.
If you choose to feed commercial dog food , always check the packaging for what is known as The Nutritional Adequacy Statement. This was designed for vets, nutritionists, and dog owners to evaluate the foods nutritional value to their pets.;
Monitor Weight & Health
You can determine whether you are feeding the right amount by running your hands over your dogs ribs.;Fido is at a good weight if you can feel your dogs ribs but not see them.
Weighing your GSD on a scale regularly is the best way to keep an eye out for a healthy weight.
Monitoring your German Shepherds weight is key as you transition to a raw food diet. An;unbalanced;diet can lead to excessive;energy, skin or coat disorders, allergies, weight loss, malnutrition,;or;obesity.;
Follow your GSDs weight and health closely for about a month to ensure that he is not adversely affected by this new diet. If you notice these symptoms, immediately stop feeding your dog this food and consult with a professional dog nutritionist.
Its important to work alongside your vet to ensure the diet maintains nutritional adequacy.
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How Can I Tell If My Dog Is The Correct Weight
Your dog should have a natural waist when viewed from above. For very long-haired dogs you may have to feel this with your hands. You should also be able to feel the shape of the individual ribs with just a little pressure when running your hands over your dogs chest. If his ribs are nowhere to be found he is overweight but if they are very noticeable he probably needs more food.
Blue Buffalo Blue Homestyle Recipe Puppy Chicken Dinner With Garden Vegetables
Weaning puppies, rejoice! Blue Buffalo Blue Homestyle Recipe Puppy Chicken Dinner with Garden Vegetables is going to be their new favorite. This paté- style wet food is perfect to introduce a puppy to more solid food. Its also versatile that you can use it as a treat, mix it into their dry food, or serve it as it is. The ingredients are guaranteed to be free of by-products, grains, and artificial flavors.
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Puppy Feeding Chart: How Much To Feed A Puppy By Weight
Curious to know how much should I feed my puppy? How much food to feed a puppy depends on his age and weight. Most dog and puppy food packages have a feeding chart on the label, similar to our chart below. Be sure to check your puppys specific food bag for the label, so you know how much to feed him. While this chart is a good baseline, we recommend double-checking with your vet as all dogs dietary needs are unique.
German Shepherd Food Tip From Jeff:
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Dog Food For German Shepherds With Dry Skin Or Flaky Skin
Skin problems with food might be to do with allergies, so if you suspect this, see a vet.
If you think the problem may just be a mild one and that the skin is just dry and flaky, it could be because of some of these reasons:
You live in a dry area with little humidity
Your dog may not be getting enough water through their food or drinking enough water
The food your dog is eating is highly processed and doesnt contain any quality nutrients that contribute to a healthy coat or skin
Your dog may be lacking digestive enzymes or probiotics in their diet
Your dogs digestive system may not be working like a normal dogs system does
Month Old German Shepherd
At 4 months old, you can begin introducing more live animal products into their diet. Ingredients like actual bone, pieces of liver, and raw eggs are great to help your dog pick up the nutrients that may be lacking in their dry dog food.
Avoid giving them too much, though, by following the guidelines weve given you above.
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Months Old German Shepherd Puppy Feeding
At two months of age, you can start to slowly decrease the moistening of your German Shepherds dry food. Eventually, the puppy will be used to eating the food completely dry.
Following the German Shepherd puppy food chart, from 2 until 4 months old, a puppy will eat 4 or 5 times a day.
This has to be carried out with one very important addition: discipline. A puppy needs to learn that it will not be fed constantly throughout the day
Accepting and adapting to a diet plan is very important for a puppys intellectual development.
Food for German shepherd puppies should be higher in calories, fats, proteins, and calcium than adult German Shepherd dog food.
This is because puppies are still growing and developing and therefore need better nutrition.
Feeding A Senior German Shepherd
Commercially available dog food may be labelled as Senior dog food on the label.
A senior dog is considered senior or older as a large dog/German Shepherd at about 6-7 years of age, bearing in mind that their lifespan is about 13 years.;
Senior German Shepherds tend to put weight on more easily , so they might have lower calorie needs, and need highly digestible foods.
Senior GSDs might also have joint problems, so a diet higher in natural joint supplements like chondroitin and glucosamine might help for some dogs.
A few things to look out for with Senior German Shepherds are:
Senior dog food tends to be low calorie , high in fiber , higher in the quality of protein.
Low fat and low sodium treats can work well
Snacks like carrots and apple slices are good examples of healthy snacks for senior dogs
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What Are The Pros And Cons Of Each Type Of Dog Food
I have put all this information in a handy table for you as it is easier to compare the pros and cons of each type of dog food and hopefully help you decide on the best diet for your German Shepherd.
Before transitioning your dog from one type to another, you may wish to talk to your veterinarian about the individual benefits and risks.
|TYPE OF DOG FOOD|
|No proven health benefits except for better digestionExpensive and time-consuming if preparing at homeRegular health checks advised|
How To Change The Diet Of A German Shepherd After 6 Months
The food intake should be reduced to twice a day once your German Shepherd is 6 months old. When we do this we can increase the food portions and eating time accordingly.
After 6 months, you should give your German Shepherd puppy shatterproof bones, such as beef, to gnaw on. This should be done to strengthen the puppys teeth and gums.
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How Much To Feed A German Shepherd Puppy
Depending on your puppys current weight, activity level, and metabolism, you should plan to feed your puppy 3 or 4 times each day.
Older puppies can be fed fewer times per day, but be sure not to limit the caloric intake below the recommended amount.
Smaller, more frequent meals will help prevent bloatgastric dilatation volvulus is a potentially life-threatening condition.
Frequent meals will also help stabilize your puppys blood sugar and energy level to help them grow steadily, not in fits and starts.
Puppies need two or three times the number of calories as adult dogs do. This may seem strange considering puppies are much smaller than adults. However, German Shepherd puppies grow extraordinarily fast, so their caloric intake needs to support that.
To figure out how much to feed your German Shepherd puppy, look at his or her weight. Females will be slightly smaller and lighter than males.
|between 31 and 49 pounds|
|5-6 months||between 35 and 57 pounds|
Using the weight chart above, the general food chart in the previous section, and considering the gender and activity level of your puppy, you can calculate the approximate amount of food to feed daily.
Split that daily amount up between all meals. For example, if your 3-month-old GSD puppy is a male and weighs 30 pounds, you should feed him approximately 2 cups per day.