German Shepherd Puppy Feeding Chart
6 Week Old German Shepherd
- At this age, it is crucial to ensure your puppy is receiving the same nutrients as if they were being fed by their mother
- Ideally, a 6 week old puppy should still be feeding from their mother
- It is tricky to replace the micro and macro nutrients that a puppy receives from their mothers milk, as well as any antibodies
- They are growing very fast, so they need enough nutrients to sustain their growth
10 Weeks Old
- As puppies are weaned off, the amount of puppy food they require increases
- They need to be fed at least 3 times a day
- To help their little bodies with the transition from mothers milk to puppy food, it is best to start with wet food
- Using wet food helps to prepare their digestive systems for whole food, which will be introduced to a puppys diet in time
- Again, they are growing very fast, so they need enough nutrients to sustain their growth
12 Weeks Old
- Around 12 weeks of age, the transition from wet to dry food begins
- Ensure the transition is in small steps, to avoid causing any upset to the puppy
- As a guide, start with a 10% dry food, 90% wet food mix and increase the dry food by 10-15% each week after that
- They need to be fed at least 3 times a day
- Still growing!
3 Months Old
5 Months Old
- Additionally, around 4-5 months of age introduce some live animal products into their diet such as actual bone, raw eggs and liver
- They need to be fed at least 3 times a day
- As a guide, feed them a total of 1-2 cups of dry food a day
1 Year Old
Fats And Other Essential Vitamins And Minerals
A German Shepherd puppy needs around 8% fat in their diet, while an adult GSD should have about 5% fat in their diet.
Natural fats from fish, meat, and plant-based oils contain beneficial properties that are great for your dogs cognition and muscle movement.
These fats will also have visual benefits, as your German Shepherds coat will have a beautiful shine when they get enough fat and oil in their diet!
Because German Shepherds are a powerful breed of dog, their energy levels will be served well by feeding them dog food that contains a range of vitamins like Vitamin A, B12, and E.
German Shepherd Feeding Guide: Adult Years
Once your German Shepherd has ended his puppy stage and transitioned into adulthood, hes ready to eat a balanced adult diet.
Adult dog food will have a different ratio of calcium, protein, phosphorus, and other nutrients than puppy food does.
Feeding an adult dog a puppy formula can cause obesity as well as put too much strain on kidneys and other vital organs. Long term use of inappropriate food for an adult dog can have catastrophic consequences.
That said, there is no need to panic if your adult GSD eats a bowl of puppy food now and then.
Adult German Shepherds should be fed twice a day. They can get by on once per day, but its always better to split daily caloric intake between smaller meals instead of feeding it all at once.
Again, bloat is a real problem for large breed dogs, and large meals seem to be a big cause of this.
If youre not home for twice-daily feedings, you can use an automatic feeder. These will dispense the proper amount of food at set times each day so your dog isnt left waiting for meals.
Throughout the years, Ive fed a number of different high-quality dog foods to my German Shepherds.
One of my consistent go-tos is Royal Canin Adult Breed German Shepherd dry dog food. I feed my adult dogs this particular blend for a number of reasons.
In addition, this blend also uses optimal levels of omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids to make a GSDs coat pop, so to speak. You really can see the difference.
You May Like: German Shepherd Overgrown Nails
General Nutritional Recommendations For German Shepherds
All dogs require a balance of protein, fat and carbohydrate in their diet, though dogs of certain sizes may require a slightly different ratio than smaller dogs. Large-breed dogs like the German Shepherd, for example, may require more protein than smaller dogs to help support their lean muscle mass. Smaller dogs usually require more fat than larger dogs to support their faster metabolisms. As a large-breed dog, your German Shepherds diet should provide high levels of protein with moderate fat and limited carbohydrate content. According to the Merck Veterinary Manual, adult dogs need at least 18% protein and 5% fat while puppies need 22% protein and 8% fat. If you want your dog to be as healthy as possible, however, you should choose a diet that provides more than the minimum for these nutrients.
Recommended Reading: How Much Should A German Shepherd Puppy Eat A Day
What Do You Feed German Shepherd Puppies
Your German Shepherd puppys diet should be based around a high quality, nutritionally complete puppy food. You may also wish to introduce them to fresh, lean raw meat however, dont feed your puppy any meat you would not feed to a fellow human being.
What is the best food for German Shepherd puppies? Accepting and adapting to a diet plan is very important for a puppys intellectual development. It also facilitates more complex and demanding training sessions. Food for German shepherd puppies should be higher in calories, fats, proteins and calcium than adult German Shepherd dog food.
When should I Feed my German Shepherd puppy? From 3 to 4 weeks old, when it comes to feeding a German Shepherd puppy, we should start by letting them taste new foods and flavors. At this stage, the German Shepherd puppys diet plan requires them to eat a special wet food for puppies.
What not to feed a German Shepherd? Avoid anything spicy or with sugar, and NEVER give your dog chocolate it can be fatal. In addition, steer clear of foods like grapes, raisins, and garlic. Click here to read more about human foods you shouldnt feed your German Shepherd. Here are examples of some human foods German Shepherds like to eat: Cooked chicken breast.
Also Check: Average Weight Of A German Shepherd
Ingredients To Avoid Feeding German Shepherd
Keep chocolate bars and cocoa powder always out of your hounds reach. Weve studied that the toxic ingredient in chocolate is methylxanthines that could cause harm to your dog. At times if German Shepherds consume chocolate, it may lead to symptoms such as vomiting, diarrhea, or low blood pressure.
Both types of grapes -fresh and dried ones are toxic to German Shepherds. Researchers have not yet concluded as to why so. But they have witnessed dogs having severe kidney failure symptoms, abdominal pain, and vomiting when consumed too many grapes.
Avocado is not highly toxic for canines but is mildly harmful to German Shepherds bodies. Theres a toxic ingredient in avocado that is called persin, which increases the obesity of pets. The fat content can lead to pancreatitis that can malfunction the whelps pancreas and affect its digestive system.
Caffeine and alcohol
Caffeine or alcohol, also in small quantities, can harm your German Shepherd Dogs internal system. Consuming it may lead to dangerous complications in your dogs body such as increased hyper activeness and restlessness. Avoid foods such as raw yeast dough and baked goods with liquor.
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.
Recommended Reading: How Much Does The Average German Shepherd Weight
Month Old German Shepherd Puppy Weight
When your GS puppy is 2 months old, you can expect him or her to weigh between 16 and 20 pounds, depending on the sex of the puppy. Females will always be a little lower on the scale than their male counterparts.
They are bigger dogs and do gain weight quicker than other breeds, but you still want to watch for signs of gaining too much too quickly or being underweight.
How Much Should A 9 Week Old German Shepherd Puppy Eat
Ideally, they should be on food with lean protein and low fats to keep their slim physique. Puppies should be fed about 2 cups of food daily, on average. The amount of food depends on the crude fat contained within the food. A puppy should eat 3 times a day, moving to 2 times a day at around a year old.
Don’t Miss: German Shepherd Ears Floppy
Meal Plan / Feeding Guide By Weight
There are lots of German Shepherd food brands out there. However, you need to look for foods that meet your pet’s unique dietary requirements.
A few great recommendations from Hungry Bark include:
- Superfoods with Chicken, Turkey + Brown Rice
- Superfoods with Turkey + Duck
- Superfoods with Lamb + Turkey
- Superfoods with Salmon
If you doubt how much food your dog needs, you should check the meal pack. Most dog food brands provide feeding calculators to help you work out how much your pet needs.
Hungry Bark recommends these daily serving amounts for your German Shepherds.
- 3lbs: 29-43 grams daily
- 80lbs: 431-517 grams daily
- Above 36kg : You should add half a cup for every additional 7kg .
Lactating German Shepherds need more calories than other adults. So If your female pet is lactating, you should visit your vet or pet nutritionist to recommend the best feeding schedule and amounts for your pet.
Puppies typically need three times the amount of food as adults. And Hungry Bark recommends thrice of daily adult servings for German Shepherd puppies. However, if your puppyâs activity level is low, you should stick to twice the daily adult servings to avoid obesity.
If you are transitioning to Hungry Barkâs dry food, you should feed your pet 75% of the old food and 25% of the new food in the first three days. Within the next 4-6 days, you can serve your pet 50% of the new food and 50% of the old food.
Wet Canned Foods
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.
Also Check: How To Tape A German Shepherd’s Ears
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.
German Shepherd Puppies Vs Adults Guidelines
Our last topic involves the difference between a puppy and an adult.
This is an important subject as it will help you figure out the best way to take care of your dog depending on whether theyre an adult or a puppy.
The following are some of the facts that recent studies have proven:
- Puppies have higher energy levels than adults. This means they need to eat more than adult German shepherds.
- German shepherds will need higher protein and fat content at an early age. The amount of fat and protein will decrease as they grow older.
- Puppies cannot tolerate too many nutrients. Ingesting extra minerals and vitamins may lead to serious health disorders. Meanwhile, adults are only risking being overweight when taking in more than intended.
With this German shepherd feeding chart, you can now decide on your dogs feeding plan, However, Id suggest seeing your vet first so you can confirm if your plan is effective.
Many owners simply feed their German shepherds without second thoughts of the dogs needs. But since youve read this blog post, you are now aware of the needs of your German shepherd.
After talking about the feeding amount, frequency, and lengths of a German shepherd, you can now easily plan how much, how many times, and how long you feed your dog. You even learned how to hydrate your German shepherd the proper way.
Don’t Miss: Walking German Shepherd Puppy
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.
How Does Your Vet Play A Role In Your German Shepherds Nutrition
Melissa Smith notes that timing is everything when it comes to switching from puppy to adult food, and your vet will play a leading role.
One of the reasons why timing is so important is because the calorie content of puppy food is so high, which can make the young adult dog gain weight too quickly, in the wrong places, particularly the belly area, where fat can be dangerous.
A growth spurt after a year is possible in German Shepherds, particularly males, and your vet may have a good idea of when the growth will finish. However, what about Shepherds that are not purebred?
This question is very reasonable, as it is a little more difficult to guess when a mixed-breed is done growing. Weekly measurements can be an excellent way to track the dogs growth.
Compare your measurements to popular GSD growth charts for reference.
Consider making sure your vet is on-board as you make the transition from puppy food to adult. Your vet will be able to spot any nutritional deficits that require addressing.
Another advantage is being able to ensure the dog has proper bone growth.
Your dogs medical history will also be a factor in when the switch to adult food takes place.
If your German Shepherd has needs that require a special diet, your vet will be able to provide valuable guidance about the appropriate timing.
Even though you might find it challenging to think about obesity when your dog is transitioning out of puppyhood, this stage is not too early by any means.
You May Like: Do German Shepherds Need Snow Boots
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.
Blue Buffalo Wilderness High Protein Large Breed Dry Puppy Food
This recipe from Blue Buffalo is a great option that has everything your puppy needs to stay healthy. Its protein content is 35 percent, which is well above the recommended amount.
Most of that protein comes from wholesome meat sources like deboned chicken and fish. While the kibble has more fat than your pup needs, its all good fat. The omega fatty acids will keep your dogs fur healthy while also supporting ocular health.
When it comes to minerals, youll be happy to know that this kibble offers the recommended calcium and phosphorus ratio of 1.2:1.
You May Like: A Chihuahua Mixed With A German Shepherd