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, 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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Feeding Length Of Your German Shepherd Puppy
You need to observe your German shepherd in order to determine his mealtime lengths. Take note of how long he takes to finish a normal portion of food.
You also need to observe how long he takes to be full and pay careful attention to if he is still hungry after eating his portion.
Usually, German shepherds will take around 10 to 15 minutes to complete a meal, providing that you adhered to the customary feeding instructions. If you notice that your dog is displaying signs of eating slowly, you should pay a visit to your vet.
On the other hand, if you notice that your German Shepherd is still hungry after completing a meal, you should also pay a visit to your vet.
Week Old German Shepherd Puppy
At 2 weeks old, your German Shepherd puppy will still be with his mother. He should be reliant entirely on his mothers milk. These small pups will begin to open their eyes to take in the world, but otherwise will not be straying anywhere.
In larger litters, make sure that all of the puppies are growing and gaining well. Pups that dont seem to be getting enough milk might need to have formula supplemented to them in order to get their weight up to a healthy level. If you are worried about this at all, contact your veterinarian.
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German Shepherd Puppy Diet: After 6 Months
When your German Shepherd puppy reaches 6 months of age, its daily food intake should be reduced to twice a day. When we do this we can increase the food portions and eating time accordingly. A vet can provide you with a correct and tailored diet and/or food plan for your German Shepherd puppy. Our German Shepherd diet chart below should be taken into account depending on the age, lifestyle and size of your German Shepherd puppy.
After 6 months, you should give your German Shepherd puppy shatterproof bones, such as beef, to gnaw on. This should be done in order to strengthen the puppys teeth and gums. For more, take a look here for more about Bones For Puppies.
How Much Raw Food To Feed German Shepherds
You can determine how much raw food to feed your GSD based on calories needed by his weight. The only downside is that you need to know how many calories ingredient contains and add them up. Quite a cumbersome process if you ask me.
The body weight percentage option is the method of choice for many raw feeders . Its simple, and it works with any raw diet.
As a general rule, raw feed your dog about 2% to 4% of his ideal adult weight.
However, a dogs food intake will vary depending on his weight, metabolism, activity level, lifestyle or other factors. Use the guidelines below as a German Shepherd raw diet calculator.
You have a 4 scenarios to determine how much to feed your dog.
- Weight maintenance: Feed 2% 2.5% of their current weight in pounds per day.
- Active dogs : Feed 3% 4% of their current weight in pounds per day.
- Senior, less active, or overweight dogs : Feed 1.5% 2% of their current weight in pounds per day.
- Underweight dogs : Feed 3% 3.5% % of their current weight in pounds per day.
For instance, if your GSD weights 65 pounds and you want to maintain his weigh, you would multiply the 65 pounds by either 2% 2.5%.
But, which one do you use?
If your GSD is inactive, but his weight is ideal, then use 2%. For an average activity level dog that receives anywhere from an hour to several hours of exercise a day, a middle ground like 2.25% is recommeded. If you feel your dog is more active, you may need to feed 2.5% or more to maintain a healthy weight.
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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.
Finding The Best Dog Food For Your German Shepherd
The day has long gone when choosing a dog food as simple as picking one available in the pet section of your local supermarket or pet supply store. Today there are a myriad of pet food brands available, and each brand can have multiple formulas. Enough for every dog owner, even the most experienced ones, to get confused.
The good news is pet food producers have done an excellent job of creating products that help a dog thrive. They have created a precise formula for each life stage and every breed of dogs. This actually makes your job easier when you think about it.
In general, you just need to pick a dog food that is breed and age-appropriate. In the case of our German shepherds, we are going to pick a food made for medium to large dogs according to our dogs current life stage.
Of course, youll still need to do a bit of analysis, which I described in detail in my best German shepherd foods review and buying here. As long as you follow my guidelines there, you should be able to choose which food works best for your German shepherd dog.
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Hes Stressed Out Or Anxious
You and your German Shepherd are attached at the hip, but you know how anxious and nervous he tends to get when youre out of his sight, especially if your dog is very clingy.
If your German Shepherd spends long periods of time alone at home, he might be experiencing excess stress and anxiety, which would directly reduce his appetite. To find out a ton more on separation anxiety in German Shepherds and how to stop it, you may find this post, German Shepherd Separation Anxiety: Training, Help & Treatment, exactly what you are looking for.
Food & Health In Gsd: Why Feed Raw To German Shepherds
Unfortunately, a lot of German Shepherd allergies arise from commercial dog food. German Shepherds are at a high risk of developing cutaneous adverse food reactions , or in simpler terms, dog food allergies.
Other common health problems in GSDs include degenerative myelopathy, elbow, and hip dysplasia, and osteoarthritis. High levels of starchy carbs and bad carbs found in kibble can put your GSD at risk of becoming overweight. An obese GSD can aggravate these conditions as the extra weight puts more strain on their joints, bone structure, and back .
German Shepherds are also prone to Exocrine Pancreatic Insufficiency , Inflammatory Bowel Disease, and Perianal Fistulas. A low-fat diet and highly digestible food are key to prevent irritation, inflammation of the digestive system, which helps avoid these conditions.
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How Does Diet Affect The Health Of Growing Shepherds
Recently it has come to light that a proper diet for puppies does more than prevent malnutrition.
Many orthopedic problems such as hip and elbow dysplasia have a strong hereditary component. However, people often discount the role of diet in bone developmental issues.
Theres a clear link between obesity in puppies and the resulting exacerbation of hip, elbow, and back problems.
However, your German Shepherd pup doesnt have to be overweight to suffer a myriad of health challenges. Merely creating an oversized puppy, as is often the case for show animals and people fixated on large dogs, can lead to several painful disorders:
- Hip dysplasia
- Elbow dysplasia
- Panosteitis Generalized inflammation of the long bones in puppies common in German Shepherds.
- Wobblers More common in Great Danes and Dobermans, Wobblers is a condition whereby the spinal canal is too narrow, causing neurologic instability.
Overnutrition and over-supplementation of certain vitamins and minerals lead to paradoxical malnutrition of the bone, and subsequently improper development.
Nutritional experts have modified their recommendations regarding the diets of large-breed dogs.
Many nutritionists and veterinarians advocate feeding German Shepherds and other large-breed puppies an adult or professionally-formulated homemade diet to limit the occurrence and severity of developmental problems.
What Are The Nutritional Needs Of A German Shepherd
German Shepherds are arguably among the most active and most athletic dog breeds of all time. It is almost impossible for them to just sit around all day without any physical activities. That being said, it is important that you meet their dietary needs to help them remain energetic.
So, in this article, we will find out whether you are feeding your pet right or not. Regardless, our goal is for you to understand his or her nutritional requirements. As a result, you will be able to decide what is the best dog food for German Shepherds.
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How Much Should I Feed My 8 Week Old German Shepherd Puppy
An 8 week old German Shepherd puppy should be weaned from his mothers milk and be consuming puppy food. Offer food to him 3 times a day, but do not leave it out after feeding times in order to get him on a solid schedule for meals. You can offer up to 2 cups a day, but dont be surprised if he cannot eat it all.
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.
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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.
What Is The Best Diet For A German Shepherd Puppy
See files for Dogs
When such an endearing pet like a German Shepherd puppy arrives home, it’s hard not to fall in love immediately. As a particularly affectionate breed, the German Shepherd will reciprocate this love in abundance. Since they will grow up to be a medium to large dog breed and their diet is an essential way to ensure they develop properly. Common mistakes when feeding a German Shepherd puppy include giving too much or too little food and giving them food of inferior quality. For this reason, many dog guardians ask what is the best diet for a German Shepherd puppy?
AnimalWised answers this by providing information on how much to feed a German Shepherd puppy, what type of food is best and how does this change as they grow. To do this we also provide a helpful German shepherd puppy food chart for when and how to feed these puppies properly.
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Should You Feed Your German Shepherd Dry Or Canned Food
Commercial dog food is available in three forms: dry, canned, and semi-moist.
Commercial dry dog foods normally contain about 10 percent moisture. They have a longer shelf and are the least expensive option than other forms of dog food. Not forget to mention they also promote healthy teeth and gums.
In the past, there were many complaints about the palatability of dry foods. But this issue seems to be more of a past issue as the competition among pet food manufacturers has driven the taste of dry food products more enticing than ever. All of these pros make them a wildly popular choice among dog owners.
Out of the three, wet foods are the tastiest food for dogs. They have a high moisture content, which helps to keep your dog hydrated. They are very convenient because they are easy to store and they contain very few preservatives.
The downside is they are the most expensive choice they spoil quickly and dont provide the chewing necessary to keep a dogs teeth clean.
Semi-moist foods are the less favorable option because many dogs have difficulty digesting these foods. They contain high levels of sugars to keep the morsels soft. They also include food coloring to make the foods more visually appealing to humans but dont benefit dogs at all.
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.
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Purina One Smartblend Natural Puppy Dog Food
Crafted with love and care, Purina ONE SmartBlend is an epic meal for your dog. The yummy chicken flavor satisfies your poochs 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 dont see a visible improvement in your dogs coat, skin, energy levels, and well-being, they are satisfied to give you your money back.
What Can German Shepherds Eat
So now we know what nutrients dogs need lets take a closer look at what exactly they can eat. These are the main foods German Shepherds can eat. However, they do come with some caveats, so read on!
These are the caveats to be aware of:
- If a fruit contains pits or seeds, these must be removed as they contain toxic cyanide.
- Most vegetables should be cooked first to help with digestion.
- Fruits, vegetables, dairy, and nuts should be fed in small amounts no more than 10% of daily calories.
- Although dogs can eat some nuts, they are not recommended due to their high-fat content, which can cause an upset stomach.
- Its not advisable to feed raw eggs or raw fish due to the risk of salmonella or listeria.
- Some dogs are lactose intolerant and can not eat certain dairy foods, depending on how much lactose they contain.
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