Stages Of Feeding A German Shepherd Puppy
To help you understand your German Shepherd puppys body, the stages of feeding a German Shepherd puppy might be:
1. Nursing and Mothers Milk
The first 6-8 weeks a GSD puppy should be left with their mother to be nursed on their mothers milk if possible.
This milk contains nutrients and antibodies to protect your puppy against disease.
So, if you wondered what to feed a 6 week old German Shepherd, milk is probably the best option.
2. Weaning And Transition To Solid Food
Weaning a puppy from mothers milk to solid foods occurs at the 6-8 week mark, and the puppy is then ready to transition to solid foods.
Puppies have sensitive stomachs that are easy to upset leading to diarrhea and vomiting among other problems.
To reduce the risk of upsetting your German Shepherd Puppys stomach, you can buy milk replacer or puppy milk, and mix this milk with your selected puppy solid food to create a gruel . You can also use water.
In the transition phase a puppy might eat a gruel/mushy food mix to get their stomachs used to more solid food.
3. Eating Solely Solid Food
After 2-3 weeks of the transition phase of milk replacer and solid food, your puppy should be ready to eat solely solid foods at around 8 to 11 weeks of age.
Once again, your vet is the best person to approve the plan for weaning, transitioning to solid puppy food and the type of solid puppy food and puppy milk to feed your German Shepherd puppy.
Should You Feed A German Shepherd Puppy Supplements
Required Vitamins and minerals are an essential part of a puppys diet. This is invaluable to a healthy puppys growth. If you want your dog to have healthy skin and a shiny coat, you should feed him vitamin A. You can give him vitamin E to help support his immune system.
Minerals act as a supplement to the vitamins and also ensures the healthy general function of your German Shepherds entire anatomy.
You need to be aware that just of the best vitamins and minerals for your German Shepherd puppy by visiting your vet and assessing his overall health.
Do German Shepherds Need Vitamins Or Supplements
You may choose to take vitamins and supplements, but do German Shepherds really need them?
German Shepherds dont need vitamins or supplements if they are eating complete and balanced pet food. You should only give your dog vitamins or supplements if recommended by your veterinarian to benefit their health and well-being.
Now, as my German Shepherd has been recently diagnosed with osteoarthritis of the spine, in addition to her prescribed medication, she takes YuMove Joint Supplements from Amazon. Her vet recommended these, and they contain Glucosamine and Chondroitin for joint support and easing stiffness.
I have to say Ive been pleased with how she is doing on them, so if your dog has a similar condition, Id recommend speaking to your vet.
Calories For Gsd Puppy
|12-week-old GSD puppy||2000 calories|
Your new puppy will need to have their calorie needs met daily.
Many puppies need additional calories right before a growth spurt, then eat slightly less after the growth spurt. Its difficult to tell when the growth spurt begins, but you might notice that your puppy always seems hungry.
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.
Foods Your German Shepherd Puppy Will Love
These food formulas are all recommended for large breed puppies and meet and exceed regulated nutritional standards.
The better the food, the healthier your pup will be inside and out. Dont feed your German Shepherd puppy the cheapest food you can buy. Cheaper GSD puppy food lack quality proteins that are essential for your working breed dog.
Here are some of the best top-rated German Shepherd puppy foods.
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How Much Should I Feed My German Shepherd Puppy
Follow the guideline provided by the feeder, the feed manufacturer, or by your veterinarian.
For example, you could expect to start your puppy a total of 3 cups of the day of high-quality kibble.
However, it all depends on calories quantity. Puppies will quickly develop individual needs for food types and amounts based on their size, activity level, and other factors.
Feeding And Exercise Warning
Give your dog the time to digest its food after hes had a meal.
Never let your pup play hard 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 its not long and doesnt stress your dog.
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 puppys joints healthy and help them learn confidence skills while getting to bond with their favorite person
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How Much Water Should A German Shepherd Puppy Drink
Your German Shepherd puppy needs to drink 6 ounces of water per day for every 3.5 kilograms of body weight. Therefore, if your puppy weighs approximately 35 kilograms, he needs to have about 60 ounces of water every day.
If your dog is engaged in a lot of physical activity, or if the weather is hot, then this amount may need to be increased. You may notice that your dog is panting and this is a clear sign of dehydration. Always keep the water bowl full.
Raw Paws Raw Meaty Bones
Raw Paws offers a nice variety of raw meaty bones . This means you don’t need to try and source these from a butcher.
Which can be difficult since most butchers remove all the meat from bones.
Beef marrow bones are a great source of protein, chondroitin, collagen, calcium, and phosphorous.
Bone marrow releases adiponectin which is linked to a decreased risk of cardiovascular disease and diabetes. It also builds immunity and supports kidney function.
Although I don’t recommend marrow bones for anything other than recreation for your dog. They are too hard to break and can cause damage to their teeth.
The other bone choices on offer are an excellent variety. There’s everything from:
- And quarters.
You can add these to your dog’s diet by substituting 1 or 2 meals a week with RMB which is what I do.
Or you can opt to feed your dog a prey model raw diet using these very meaty bones.
And like I mentioned before, RMB are a wonderful way to stimulate your dog’s need to rip, chew, and tear. And not to mention the natural teeth cleaning RMB offer!
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Nutritional Requirements For Senior German Shepherd
The fact that your German shepherd is growing older doesnt mean he is getting any less hungry. On the contrary, because older dogs tend to lose body mass, they need as much, if not more, protein than younger adult dogs to repair the muscle tissue.
To put it in other words, if your German shepherd is healthy and his appetite still remains high, you dont need to change his food. On the other hand, if your dog has become less active due to a health problem, you may need to switch to a senior formula that gives your dog more nutrition in each bite.
If your dog has a kidney problem, you should immediately switch your dog off his current diet to low protein dog food. It is true that protein doesnt cause kidney problems, but it can worsen your dogs existing kidney problem.
Is It Ok To Feed My Dog Once A Day
The number of meals a dog eats per day depends completely on the family schedule. Dogs should eat at least two meals each day, about 12 hours apart. But a breakfast, lunch, and dinner schedule is an equally great option. If more than 12 hours elapses between meals, the stomach can become hyperacidic causing nausea.
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German Shepherd Dog Feeding Guidelines
It is important that the owners of the German shepherd know the amount of food that their dog requires daily. Feeding too much or too little can cause health problems in your dog . If you provide a diet with excess fat to your puppy, it is more likely that you can develop hip dyslexia.
With a balanced diet one can ensure that the dog properly develops its internal systems and maintains its energy levels.
Your German Shepherd will grow rapidly during its first 12 months of life, so it is necessary to increase the amount of food in your diet as it grows. Ensuring that the puppy of the dog receives the proper amount in its nutrition, and in the right proportions is essential for the development of a healthy adult German shepherd.
Up to 6 weeks
At 6 weeks of age, you should make sure that your puppy is receiving the same level of nutrition that they were receiving from breast milk.
Ideally at this early age, a puppy should be breastfeeding for its mother, because it is difficult to replace with food the necessary micro and macronutrients, along with the natural antibodies found in breast milk.
From 6 to 10 weeks
Between 8 and 10 weeks, you can start to wean them from your mother, and start increasing the amount of food for puppy dogs that you are giving them.
It is best to start with a diet of wet food, to help your body adapt to the transition. Wet foods contain about 85% moisture, which prepares your digestive system for all the food that we will give you in the coming weeks.
Scientifically Formulated German Shepherd Puppy Food
Hills 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.
Feed a high-quality kibble from a name-brand company.
Dont buy boutique formulas, as these companies dont always quality check or feed test their formulas, and many have been found linked to causing deadly heart conditions in dogs .
The brands recommend here meet the World Small Animal Veterinary Association criteria and have no reported cases of DCM. Purina and Hills all have boarded Diplomates of ACVN on staff and Ph.D. Animal Scientists and Nutritionists work to ensure quality control and exceed nutritional standards. .
Most GSDs are healthy and fit on commercial dog foods that are high quality. Theyll eat eagerly and have a shiny coat and bright eyes with a scientifically based commercial diet that meets their needs.
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Supplements For German Shepherds
The vast majority of commercially available dry kibble is complete and balanced for your dog, assuming its a high-quality food.
That means there is almost never a reason to supplement your dogs diet with additives, vitamins, or herbal supplements. In fact, adding these things to a healthy dogs diet can cause a lot of harm.
Never supplement your dogs diet unless directed by a veterinarian. In those cases, they will prescribe or suggest canine-safe products to cover your GSDs special needs.
Human supplements are often unregulated, minimally effective, and often contain substances harmful to animals. Never use a human supplement for your German Shepherd.
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.
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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 .
Interested In Training Your German Shepherd The Right Way
If you havent trained your German Shepherd properly, then this is the perfect time to start. Whatever bad behavior your shepherd has, whether its barking at night or other bad behaviors, using the right training program is the key to having an obedient and happy pup.
The training program I love and highly recommend is Brain Training For Dogs.
With Brain Training For Dogs youll save yourself a ton of time and effort. Instead of banging your head against the wall trying to figure out why your dog wont listen, youll follow a path that has been tried, tested, and most importantly, thats given proven results. Not to mention the fact, youll be able to fit the course around your schedule, not fit your schedule around a trainer or obedience class.
So instead of worrying about whether theyre going to be well-behaved or not, youll only have to worry about how much fun youll have with them!
And in most cases its still going to be:
- Cheaper than hiring a professional.
- Cheaper than replacing everything they might break.
- And definitely cheaper than a lawsuit against you, if they decide to bite someone.
Just imagine how great it will feel to finally be able to trust your German Shepherd completely and never worry whether theyll be naughty or not. Instead, youll have the peace of mind that you have a well-behaved pup, and the boundaries you set for them, will always be there, EVEN IF YOURE NOT.
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How Much To Feed A German Shepherd
There is no definite answer to how many cups of dog food should I feed my German shepherd? as it would depend on many factors. Nonetheless, here are some simple guidelines to help you get started.
- A 60-pound German shepherd should eat 3 cups of kibble per day.
- A 70-pound German shepherd should eat 3 1/2 cups of kibble per day.
- An 80-pound German shepherd should eat 3 3/4 cups of kibble per day.
- A 90-pound German shepherd should eat 4 1/4 cups of kibble per day.
Even though these numbers serve as a good starting point, you might still need to make an adjustment based on how active and how obese your dog is. Please also note that these are generic recommendations only make sure to check the food bag for specific feeding instructions.
What Human Foods Are Dangerous For A German Shepherd Puppy
Though your German Shepherd can enjoy human foods, some of them can cause harm and they should be avoided to avoid making your puppy ill.
Chocolate contains the theobromine toxin which causes health issues for your puppy these include rapid heartbeat, vomiting, diarrhea, seizures, and hyperactivity.
Avocado is another toxic food for your puppy because it contains persin which causes serious gastrointestinal issues when eaten. Other foods to avoid feeding your German Shepherd puppy include onions, raisins, grapes, fruit pits, macadamia nuts, and sometimes dairy.
German Shepherd Stomach Problems
Theres nothing quite as upsetting to you as a German Shepherd with an upset stomach. German Shepherds are prone to stomach and digestive tract sensitivity, and they can suffer from diarrhea and other stomach discomforts.
It is important to keep a watchful eye on both input AND output and note changes in both, making sure you communicate these to your vet if anything is abnormal.
Have a conversation with your vet about the best supplements and dog food options for your dog that will promote optimal health and wellness. In cases of severe sensitivity, you may even want to have your GSD tested for food sensitivities and food allergies so that you can begin to eliminate things that are not healthy from his diet.
Allie has a sensitive stomach. Her stomach issues were much worse when she was younger, and I spent a lot of time finding the right food that agreed with her stomach.
When her stomach was really upset, her vet suggested incorporating chicken breast and white rice into her diet to help it settle. I think she liked the chicken and rice better than her normal dog food:)
Finding a dog food that incorporates the nutritional requirements for a healthy GSD, includes some of your German Shepherds favorite foods and agrees with their sensitive stomachs will keep them healthy and happy for years to come.