How Much To Feed A German Shepherd Puppy: Our Guide
Wondering how much to feed a German Shepherd puppy? Weve got the answers!
From the day you bring them home, to the time they move onto adult food.
After all, the typical GSD puppy feeding guide can change almost daily as your puppy grows bigger and stronger!
Puppyhood may be all too short, but it is a critically important time for your new puppys adult health and well-being.
In this article, we take an in-depth look at the German Shepherd puppy food diet.
Giving you trustworthy German Shepherd puppy feeding guidelines to supplement instructions given by your puppys breeder and veterinarian.
Creating A Consistent Feeding Schedule
Keeping your German Shepherd puppy on a consistent food schedule will help teach him when to expect food. It will help regulate his hunger and ensure that he is eating consistently to grow well.
The ideal schedule for a puppy is to give him about 2 cups of food a day, broken up into 3 meals. When your puppy reaches one year, you can decrease the amount to 2 meals a day. The needed amount can vary from puppy to puppy.
Typically A Barf Raw Diets For Dogs Follow This Formula:
|Broccoli, celery, squash, pumpkin, spinach, leafy greens, and carrots. Fruit such as apples, cranberries, and blueberries. Fresh herbs such as parsley, basil, and oregano.||Fruit provide antioxidants while vegetables have carotenoids, flavonoids, antioxidants, and many other phytochemicals that are beneficial to immune function and health dogs.|
These nutritional percentages can vary depending on your dogs unique needs. If your dog is sensitive to organs, a 2% liver will provide essential vitamin A, minerals, and other minerals.;
You can add some dairy, such as cottage cheese, plain yogurt and/or raw eggs for more protein sources.
Note: It is critical that you;use high-quality grade meat.
Dr. Dobias advises rotating the type of meat fed every four days to mix things up. Feeding your dog more than one meat and varying the fruits and veggies on the same day is okay. Dogs would not be eating one type of protein if they were in nature, he explains. They would be eating a variety.
We suggest consulting a veterinary nutritionist to help create a;diet plan for your GSD or before making any changes to your dogs diet.;Formulating a balanced raw dog diet without professional help can be tedious.
If you need more advice on German Shepherd raw diet nutrition or want to learn more about the benefits and impact of raw food on dogs,;read Give Your Dog a Bone;by Ian Billinghurst. This book is considered the Bible of raw dog food nutrition.
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How Much Should I Feed My German Shepherd Puppy
To begin with follow the guidelines provided by the feeder, the feed manufacturer, or by your veterinarian.
For example, you could expect to start feeding your puppy a total of around 3 cups a day of a high-quality kibble.
However this will vary depending on how calorie dense the food is and how it is formulated.
Puppies will quickly develop individual needs for food types and amounts based on their size, activity level, and other factors.
Week Old German Shepherd
At 6 weeks old, your job as a new owner is to make sure that your puppy is receiving the same level of nutrition that they were getting from their mothers milk.
Ideally, your puppy should still be nursing from their mother, because most foods are going to have a hard time replacing the needed micro and macronutrients, along with the natural antibodies that are found inside of the mothers milk.
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Feeding Your German Shepherd Puppy Raw Food
Feeding raw food to your German Shepherd puppy means that they are always eating wholesome, fresh, allergen-free foods that do not have any fillers and preservatives.
Raw food is easy to digest for your puppy and can help prevent Inflammatory Bowel Disease. Raw food means that your puppy does not eat unnecessary carbs allowing them to maintain a healthy weight.
However, uncooked raw foods can cause contamination with pathogens causing illness to your puppy. Unbalanced raw food can also affect the overall health of your puppy.
Raw foods such as muscle meat, edible bone, liver, vegetables, and fruits will ensure that your puppy is getting all the necessary nutrients. Consult with your vet to come up with raw diet recipes for your puppy.
Food Requirements Of German Shepherd Puppies
Puppies;have the ability to store energy in a seemingly endless way.;This means that they;need a constant supply of calories; the right types of calories to keep their energy levels high and help them become happy and healthy adult dogs.If this is the first time you have a German shepherd puppy, you are probably going to ask yourself some questions about your diet.;Feeding a puppy is very different from feeding an adult dog;.;Younger children need to maintain a regular feeding schedule and their growing bodies require more nutrients from their food than adult dogs.
- How much food should I give my puppy?
- How many times a day should I feed my puppy?
- How much should a puppy eat?
If you do not follow the proper guidelines one can simply be supercharged to your puppy or have it lacking nutrients and minerals vital for its growth.
As a general rule, it can be said that you are feeding your puppy excessively if he can not see or feel his rib cage.
While, for humans, this is considered a sign of malnutrition, it is actually a guide you can use to help find out if your puppy is getting enough calories from his diet.
German Shepherd Feeding Guide: Best Dog Food For Puppies Adults & Seniors & Other Faqs
Weve put together this German Shepherd feeding guide to include important information and considerations related to feeding German Shepherds.
We separately cover feeding guidelines for puppies and adult dogs, but also outline what might be some of the best dog food brands and products for each.
We cover considerations including :
General dog feeding guidelines
How much to feed a dog per day
Feeding a GSD puppy
Feeding an adult GSD
Feeding a senior GSD;
Whether you have just brought a puppy into your home, or you just want to brush up on your general dog food knowledge for an adult dog this guide might be a good place to start.
Lets take a look!
- Wellness CORE Grain-Free Puppy Chicken & Turkey Recipe Dry Dog Food
- Wellness CORE Dry Dog Food Puppy Puppy Formula Natural, Grain free,;protein rich , with the calories and DHA needed for healthy development in puppies.;All natural and contains no wheat, corn, soy, meat by-products, or artificial colors, flavors and preservatives.
You can find product summaries of these dog and puppy food products further down in the guide below .
Onto the rest of the guide
What Are The Signs Youre Overfeeding Your German Shepherd Puppy
There are quite a few signs that you have been overfeeding your German Shepherd. Luckily, most of these are visual and easy to identify!
Sudden Increased Weight
A sudden increase in weight is a clear sign that you have been overfeeding your German Shepherd. The beautiful dog breed is supposed to be lean but when you feed them too much food they can get fat.;
Fattening up your German Shepherd is dangerous for their hips which are prone to damaging later in life.
Pay attention to the size of your pet and take them into routine vet visits. If your vet tells you that your dog needs to lose weight, do not take this request lightly. Too much weight can be dangerous!
Food is Being Left in the Bowl
When your dog leaves food behind in their bowl this shows that you are giving them too much food. To eliminate the chance of harmful bacteria getting on your German Shepherds food, you should throw out their food every few hours.
Take note of any leftover food. If there is a considerable amount left this indicates that you are giving your dog way too much food. It is time to reconsider the amount of food you give your dog!
German Shepherd is Eating Too Fast
Looking into your dogs throw-up can be telling -and necessary. If it is brown and comprised mainly of food, this means the food did not touch their stomach acids. Your German Shepherd did not swallow their food before throwing up.
Your German Shepherd Has Tearstains
Your German Shepherd Has Food Bloat
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German Shepherds That Shouldnt Eat Raw Dog Food
According to Dr. Doug Knueven, a holistic medicine specialist who consults for Natures Variety says raw diets do not suit all dogs.
Since raw foods are normally high in protein, they are not appropriate for dogs with kidney or liver problems. Too much protein stresses these organs, which can aggravate these conditions. Dr. Knueven also states that dogs on chemotherapy or immune-suppressing drugs should be restricted from eating raw food.
If your dog is suffering from pancreatitis or digestive problems, its recommended to start with a cooked homemade diet before switching to raw.
Best Dog Food For German Shepherds
The best dog food for your German Shepherd, or any breed, is an important question and topic for dog owners.
Gone are the days of feeding the family dog table scraps or fending for themselves in the neighbors garbage cans as the primary source of their diet.
Like humans, dogs thrive on good quality food in the correct quantity and on a regular schedule.
This article will explore the overall dietary needs of a large, active breed like the German Shepherd and specific dog food ingredients that help German Shepherds thrive.
Lets explore the paw-fect diet for German Shepherds
German Shepherd Nutritional Requirements
Other than simply minding the amount of food to feed a German Shepherd, you should also consider the quality of the food and the nutrients that it provides.;
Feeding your German Shepherd with low-quality dog food will cause malnutrition and lead to overeating and health issues like poor skin, gastrointestinal issues, and osteoarthritis.
So, when it comes to choosing your German Shepherds dog food, you must look out for two important ingredients, protein and fat. The dog food you choose must provide at least 22% protein and 8% fat for puppies or at least 18% protein and 5% fat for adult German Shepherds.
That said, not all protein and fats are created equal. And so, do also consider the sources of such nutrients. Ideally, your German Shepherds protein must come from whole meat sources like beef, fish, poultry, and organ meats. In the same way, your German Shepherds fat must also come from healthy sources such as fish oil and vegetables.
Should You Give Your German Shepherd Supplements
As a general guideline, do not provide your dog with supplements unless directed by a veterinarian. And for the most part, if youre feeding your German Shepherd with high-quality dog food, then it will most likely already have all the nutrients it needs, and you shouldnt have to worry about giving it supplements in the first place.
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Feeding A Senior German Shepherd
Your German Shepherds diet will then again change as it turns into a senior. This is as senior dogs typically require fewer calories due to lower energy needs brought about by lesser activity and slower digestion. Therefore, to keep your senior German Shepherd in shape, you must consider a low-calorie, high-fiber, and moderate protein and fat diet.
Usually, you can keep on feeding your senior dog with a decreased amount of its adult food or with specially formulated food for older dogs. But, considering older dogs may already have medical conditions that need to be addressed, your best bet would be to consult with a veterinarian to come up with the ideal diet for your senior German Shepherd.
What Nutrients Does A German Shepherd Puppy Need
German Shepherd puppies require a protein-rich diet to help them grow well and have sustained energy for their active lifestyle. Your puppy needs at least 22% protein in his diet. High-quality protein sources include fish, chicken, and beef.
According to our German Shepherd puppy feeding chart, your pup needs 5% of fat in their diet for healthy skin and coat. The recommended amount of carbs for your puppy is 5% to 8% and should come from fruits and vegetables such as peas and potatoes.
Your puppy also requires minerals, vitamins, probiotics, antioxidants, water, and omega fatty acids in their diet to ensure that their immunity is healthy.
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Meal Plans For German Shepherds
The amount of food you should give your German Shepherd depends on her age, size, activity level, health condition, food type, and brand. Underfeeding or overfeeding your dog has serious consequences. So as your pet grows, you need to weigh and feed her with the food quantity that matches her weight.
Puppies typically eat more than adult German Shepherds because they need more nutrients and calories to grow and develop body parts.
Moreso, if your German Shepherd is a couch dog, it will consume less food than working police or sled German Shepherd dog that exercises all day. Working or security dogs need food with high protein content to provide extra calories for their daily activities.
Another essential thing to consider is your dog’s health condition. If your dog is ill or pregnant, your vet may recommend increasing the amount of food you give your dog. Pregnant or lactating dogs typically need more calories and high energy foods to keep up with daily energy demands.
Build Your Dog’s Custom Meal Plan
Proteins In The Feeding Of A German Shepherd
Proteins also play a vital role in the growth of your German shepherd and it is recommended that a German Shepherd dog have a diet with;at least 22% protein;.;It is better to;feed pure proteins;to your German shepherd rather than buying poor quality dog food that has added corn syrup, a stuffing that is very harmful to a dog.
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Types Of Diet For German Shepherd Puppies
German Shepherds are lean and strong dogs, which means that they need a diet that is high in lean proteins, but low in fats and carbohydrates. A GS that is overweight will have trouble losing weight because of the way that their body is made.
Overweight puppies will also have too much pressure put on their hips and since hip dysplasia is a real concern for GS, you want their hips to grow well. Stay away from foods that are high in filler as well because that will contribute to weight gain without positive benefit.
German Shepherd Homemade Food
Providing German Shepherd dog homemade food may result in a better digestive system and prevent many diseases indeed. Feeding German Shepherd pup or homemade dog food may even increase the odds of staying healthy. But the most important trick is to balance all the ingredients, also if we feed fresh and high-quality product, an unbalanced diet can ruin the dogs health by giving it specific allergies.
You must consult a veterinarian before for a proper diet chart for a German Shepherd dog and even for a puppy food chart.
For proteins meat, poultry, fish, plain yogurt, cottage cheese or eggs
Vegetables and fruits fresh fruits, green leafy vegetables, carrots, cooked sweet potatoes.
But there are certain foods that you must take care of and avoid feeding your dog like tomatoes, avocado, garlic, onion, grapes, raisins, chocolates as this food can result in toxic results for your dog and even be dangerous to eat.
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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.;
How Much And How Often To Feed A Senior German Shepherd
Senior German shepherds tend to experience weight fluctuation, meaning that the amount of dog food your dog should eat varies greatly depending on your dogs body condition. Generally, senior dogs will be benefited from eating more often with less portion size.
Lets say if I used to feed my dog twice a day, then I would feed him three times a day during his senior year. Three meals per day is a maximum you should give unless your vet specifies otherwise.;
As for the portion size, I would suggest speaking to your vet to get an optimal ration. One last thing that Id like to add is that water is an essential part of your dogs diet. Its necessary to aid in digestion, flush the toxins out, and maintain a body temperature, so dont forget to provide easy access to clean, cool fresh water at all times.
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