If you have a German Shepherd, you will need to feed them good food for them. Grocery store food is too cheap and might not suit this dog breed. You might also want to avoid expensive or fancy foods since they might not be the best option either.
I will describe the various diets below. Some are for dogs with some problems and different stages of life. German Shepherds have some special needs. I will tell you what they are and if your GSD gets enough food that is nutritious at each stage in their life.
Nutritional Needs of German Shepherds
All dogs need healthy, nutritious food. But not everyone’s dog needs the same kind of food. For example, small dogs need something different than big German solid Shepherds. The best thing is to find out what your dog needs and make sure you buy it for them. Providing them with proper nutrients will ensure great health along with its coat looking great. Just make sure to regularly brush its coat.
According to the AKC, German Shepherds can be up to 26 inches high. Males are around 66 pounds, and females are 49-71 pounds. This is a medium or large dog in everyday life, so it needs food to match its size. Make sure you get good quality food for your dog.
German Shepherds are big and energetic. You must feed them at various times.
Puppies will need different nutrients than older dogs, like protein and calcium. You’ll need to make sure that what you feed them is high quality and healthy and the right food for their age.
German Shepherds are a type of dog that needs to eat more food. They need more because they are active and have a lot of muscle. They should eat high-quality food with more calories to make sure they get enough energy.
If you only eat high-fat and salty food, your body will feel sick. If you are a professional athlete, you will not perform well if all of your fatty food. The same goes for German Shepherds.
Don’t feed your dog fast food, burgers, or soda if you really want your dog to be healthy.
This breed of dog is prone to more health problems than other breeds. Make sure you are feeding it a healthy diet. You should try to prevent these problems by giving them a nutritious diet, rather than waiting until they happen and then trying to fix them.
Dogs can have arthritis. It can be from hip or elbow dysplasia, which they may have inherited. But you can help your dog by eating well and staying healthy so that they don’t get the condition too much.
It is essential to ensure they don’t get hurt when you have a GSD. Some of these injuries happen if the dog is not taking enough calcium and phosphorus.
Kidney problems can happen if you overeat protein. Pancreatitis can occur if you eat food that is high in fat. Heart disease will shorten your GSD’s life if they overeat salt and fat.
These are not all the health considerations for your dog, but you should know how important food is to your German Shepherd. It can be harmful to them in the long run if you feed them low-quality food since they may become ill or even die.
German Shepherd Feeding General Guidelines
Most vets will tell you to watch your dog, not the bowl. They mean that you should always pay attention to your dog’s size and shape. It is essential not to closely follow charts and graphs of food measurements.
You should eat less if your dog is putting on weight. If he still gains weight, you can reduce the amount of food during a meal.
If you think that your dog is not eating enough, you might give him more food. Give the dog ¼ cup of food at a time and see if he eats it. If not, keep adding ¼ cups until the dog is happy with how much food he has.
Do not change the amount of food your dog eats or when you feed it. Change it gradually instead. It will take a few weeks to adapt to the new schedule, but they will get used to it.
Dog Food Measurements
Most commercial dog foods will have feeding guides on the back of the package. However, these are just suggestions, so do not be too strict on following them if your dog is not responding well.
Generally speaking, an adult dog in excellent health and fitness should be fed approximately this much:
10-30 pounds1 ¼ – 2 ¼ cups per day30-50 pounds2 ¼ – 3 ½ cups per day50-80 pounds3 ½ – 4 ½ cups per day80-100 pounds4 ½ – 5 cups per day over 100 pounds5 cups plus ½ cup per additional 10 – 20 pounds of weight
In these charts, there are a lot of numbers. You can feed your dog with these different amounts. These charts will help you know how much to feed your dog each day.
It’s best to start with a low amount and then increase it if necessary. If your dog is very active or a working animal, you should start with the highest amount.
However, if your dog is pregnant, its nutritional needs might vary. It is best to talk to your local vet to know what to feed your pregnant dog. You have to make sure you are feeding her enough to fill her required nutrients until she gives birth to her puppies.
German Shepherd Feeding Guide by Age
Different German Shepherds are of different ages. We are making it convenient for you to find what food to feed your dog. Just find your dog’s age, and the correct information will come up for you.
You should talk to a veterinarian before changing your dog’s feeding habits. The information in this article is for research purposes only.
Feeding a German Shepherd Puppy From Birth to 12 Weeks
All dogs should spend at least eight weeks with their mother. The mother will take care of the puppies and teach them how to eat puppy mush.
Puppies need milk. Puppy mush is made of dog food that has been soaked in water, milk, or other things. After the puppies are weaned from their mother’s milk, they can eat puppy mush or any other safe foods for puppies.
It is vital to feed your puppy the food that they started on. If you feed them another kind of food, they might get sick. This food should be for puppies and not adults or seniors.
German Shepherd puppies can stop eating their breeder’s food when they are 8-12 weeks old. You can start by adding a little bit of the new food to the old food and adding more every day until the puppy is only eating the new food.
Begin with a third of the previous meal and a quarter of the new dish. Make it half and half after a few days. Make it 34% new food and 14% old food after the first week. Within that, your dog should be entirely on her new food after two to three weeks.
Puppy Mush Recipe
You might need a puppy mush recipe if you care for a puppy before 8-10 weeks old. The ingredients in the recipe are dry kibble, water, and/or formula.
Pour boiling water or hot puppy food into a bowl. Add the kibble to the pot. Stir until it is all wet, then let it stand until the water is soaked up by the dry food. Then, using a fork, mash it until no lumps remain.
If your puppy doesn’t have many teeth yet, add more water or puppy formula to make the mush soupy. The puppy will be able to lap it up easily. Just make sure that it has cooled down before you serve it to them. This is also a great way to get your dog to drink water.
Sometimes, puppies do not need liquid after the first time. But watch them closely when they eat. Puppies can choke or fall into their food dish and become sick (or aspirate liquid). According to your vet’s instructions, feed the puppy four to six times a day.
If a puppy is full and warm, its belly will be round and firm. They don’t need to limit their food intake at this age.
Feeding Guide For German Shepherd Puppy from 12 Weeks to 6 Months
Puppies can be taught to eat fewer meals each day if given the opportunity at defined times and with set amounts after they reach the age of 12 weeks. While you don’t want to restrict their eating too much at this age, you also don’t want to let them eat whatever they want.
German Shepherds often overeat. This can cause medical problems such as obesity, heart problems, liver issues, and joint pain.
Instead of letting your puppy eat all the food in a bag, ask your vet what to do. They’ll look at your German Shepherd pup as an individual and will also consider how other German Shepherds act.
The vet will talk about your pup’s health and how active he is. He will also think about how much energy the dog has. The vet will tell you that dogs need to eat less as they get older, but if your dog still looks round and has a potbelly, then you should feed him more food.
This potbelly baby stage indicates that she is not mature enough for reduced feedings. Watch her body and weight. When she looks more like an older puppy and the potbelly is slimming down, you can reduce the feedings to 3 per day.
How Much Should a German Shepherd Puppy Be Feed?
You need to feed your puppy 3 times a day. The puppy’s weight, activity level, and metabolism must be considered for how many times you should feed it. Puppies beyond the age of six months can be fed less often. But make sure to not limit the amount of food given because the recommended calories have already been met.
Smaller, more frequent meals can help prevent bloat. Bloat is a condition that is life-threatening and can happen when your stomach gets too full.
Puppies need more food than adults. They grow fast, so they need to eat a lot of food! German Shepherd puppies can eat twice as much as an adult dog. This might seem strange because the puppy is much smaller than an adult. But since they grow very fast, they need more food.
To know how much to feed your German Shepherd puppy, you can look at their weight. Females will be smaller and lighter than males. This also depends on the variation; a German Shepherd and Pitbull mix is also a heavy eater, which is quite an expected trait from both parents.
A baby will weigh between 11 and 30 pounds in 2-3 months and between 17 and 40 pounds in 3-4 months. In 4-5 months, a baby will weigh between 31 and 49 pounds. Finally, in 5-6 months, the average weight of a baby is 35-57 pounds.
If you have a 3-month-old German Shepherd that is male, weighs 30 pounds, and is active, then it needs to eat 2 cups of food each day. Split the amount of food it needs into three meals throughout the day.
If he eats four times a day, that works up to 12 cups of food per meal. To help him gain weight or satisfy his hunger, gradually increase the amount of food in each meal until he achieves a healthy weight.
Feeding Guide for German Shepherd Puppy from 6 Months to 12 Months
At this time in your German Shepherd’s development, growth will be slower. You should not give her as many feedings as you used to.
Watch your dog’s weight, health, and activity level. But now, you can split her total daily calories over fewer meals. At this stage, she should still be consuming puppy food. At that time, you may consider buying a bag or adult formula for her too.
Individual kibbles from the adult formula can be used as treats or training rewards. This will assist her in acclimating to the new flavor and texture.
Around 9 months of age, you can begin adding a small amount of the adult formula into her puppy food. However, she should still be eating primarily puppy chow.
At 12 months, you can usually switch to adult dog food. Before making any modifications to your GSD’s food, consult your veterinarian.
Only your veterinarian can tell you when your dog is fully mature. Some GSDs stay on puppy food for two years. You should ask your vet if your dog needs to remain in the puppy food for a longer time or if it can move to adult food.
German Shepherd Feeding Guide: Adult Years
Once your German Shepherd has transitioned into adulthood, he is ready to eat an adult diet. The food will be different than what he ate as a puppy. Feeding him the same things as when he was younger might make him overweight and put too much strain on his organs or other parts of his body.
Adult German Shepherds should be fed twice per day. They can get by once per day, but they will be healthier if fed in smaller amounts.
Bloat is a serious concern for large breed dogs, so if you can’t be home for twice-daily feedings, an automatic feeder can help. These will administer the appropriate amount of food at predetermined periods throughout the day, ensuring that your dog does not go hungry.
I feed my dogs the Royal Canin Adult Breed German Shepherd dry dog food. It is one of my favorite foods. I like it because it is healthy and nutritious and it lasts a long time in your fridge. When they eat this food, my dogs will grow up to be strong and healthy.
This food is made for German Shepherds. It has lots of animal-based nutrients that help make its joints healthy. These nutrients also make strong, lean muscles in your dog’s body to keep them in good shape when they are active.
German Shepherd Feeding Guide for Senior Years
Dogs of large breeds, such as the German Shepherd, age more quickly than dogs of smaller breeds. Large breeds decline in health and energy much more rapidly than smaller breeds. When your dog is an adult and turns into a senior, make sure to change its diet.
Big dogs usually reach the older stage (not relatively senior, but close) halfway through their lives. A German Shepherd’s life expectancy ranges from 10 to 15 years, which means that they’d be considered older and borderline senior at around 5 or 6 years old.
This is a suitable time to ask your vet if you should change your dog’s diet or continue with regular adult meals. A GSD can switch to a senior diet once they get older. Older GSDs need fewer calories, as they move less and don’t eat as much as when they were younger.
Older dogs have slower digestion. They also need fiber. Give them senior-specific dog food with adjusted calories because they eat the same amount of food in a day as younger dogs.
Make sure to ask your vet if you are not sure which food is best. Not all foods are the same. For treats, senior dogs should avoid milk bones with many calories or salty treats with fat in them. They can eat apples or carrots instead, which are healthy and good for them.
Some senior dogs get sick. This is because of how they ate when they were young, or because they are too old. But it is never too late to care for them. Diet might play an even more significant part in your life if you have a GSD with health complications like kidney disease or joint discomfort.
German Shepherd Dog Feeding Tips
You can see a ton of dog feeding guides online. It is best to talk to your vet about your dog’s needs.
Raw Diets, Cooking for Dogs, and Other Alternative Feeding
This article focuses mainly on dry kibble, which is what most people feed their dogs. But some people choose to feed their dogs a different diet. These include raw food or feeding them regular human food cooked for them.
There are different ways to feed your German Shepherd, but they all have pros and cons. You should talk with your vet before you start feeding him raw food or homemade food. What’s good for humans is not always suitable for dogs.
Go to the link below to learn about canine metabolism, life stages, and nutritional needs. You can read about how it is suitable for your dog to eat healthy food.
Supplements for German Shepherds
The majority of dry kibble is complete and balanced for your dog. This means that there is rarely a need to add anything to their food. Even if they are healthy, adding things can be harmful.
Never supplement your dog’s diet unless a veterinarian says you should. They will tell you what to use. Human supplements are often not regulated, don’t work very well, and may have things in them that are bad for animals. Never give your GSD human supplements.
German Shepherds need good food too. The food should be made of meat and not have any animal stuff. You should look at the ingredients on the back of the package if you don’t want to eat that food.
Be sure to buy high-quality food for your dog with a clear label with ingredients and nutritional information. This will cost more, but it is worth it because you want to be healthy and happy.
Frequently Asked Questions About How Much Should a German Shepherd Eat
How Much To Feed a German Shepherd Puppy per Day?
Let him eat as much as he wants for thirty minutes to figure out how much food to give your German shepherd puppy. Then measure how many kibbles are left in the bowl. This will help you determine how many kibbles to feed your dog daily.
How Often Should I Feed My German Shepherd Puppy?
It’s essential to know how many times your puppy should eat. Most people say three or four times a day.
How Long Do You Keep a German Shepherd on Puppy Food?
Expert breeders suggest feeding your German shepherd puppy until they are one year old. After six months, you can change them to adult food, so they don’t grow too big. This way, the puppy will still get all the nutrients he needs as he grows up.
How Much and How Often To Feed a Senior German Shepherd?
Senior German shepherds tend to gain weight and lose weight. Eating more often will help them.
To find out more about how much a german shepherd should eat, visit this page.