German Shepherds are more than just companions because they are also known for being an amazing guard dog. Well, these dogs have a huge build so they definitely need enough nutrients in order to stay healthy and strong.
Adult German Shepherds are really big, but they are known for their skin allergies and sensitive stomachs. This is the main reason why you need to pay close attention to the food that they are eating and create a special diet for them.
You don’t need to worry too much because we will guide you on how to create the best diet for your German shepherd and some of the best dog foods that you can give them.
- Nutrients Needed by German Shepherd Puppies
- Nutrients Needed by Adult German Shepherds
- Types of Food for German Shepherds
- Top 5 Best Dog Foods for German Shepherds
Nutrients Needed by German Shepherd Puppies
Puppies can grow rapidly on their first eight months of age so they require a lot of nutrients in order to support the development of their bones and muscles. When it comes to food, make sure that you give them something that is made for their breed type.
You need to feed them large breed puppy formulas because they are made to support the calorie, carbohydrate and calcium needs of your dogs.
Small breed formulas usually have low calorie and fat contents, which may leave your dogs’ malnourish. Adult formulas won’t be a good idea for your puppies as they would have a hard time digesting them.
Your puppies need a total of 500 calories per day and it has to increase gradually as they grow. When the puppy reaches young adulthood, he should be able to consume about 1,500 to 1,700 calories a day.
Nutrients Needed by Adult German Shepherds
If you don’t know yet, German Shepherds actually have a shorter colon compared to other large breed dogs. It means that they are always having a hard time digesting their food. This is the reason why your dog should have a precise diet to prevent any problem in their stomach.
An adult German shepherd actually needs about 1,700 to 2,400 calories per day. This is because of their huge build and their active lifestyle. For a senior or less-active dog, they have to consume about 1,300 to 1,600 calories per day.
For their food, it should have 18 to 24 percent protein and about 14 percent fat level. The protein should come from meat sources like pork, beef, fish, chicken, lamb, and more. You should also look for food with healthy fat, especially from canola oil, flaxseed or chicken.
Types of Food for German Shepherds
Dogs eat a lot of food and they can almost eat anything. However, when it comes to dog food, you need to be very specific on what to give them. Here are some of the dog foods that you can give to your German Shepherd.
1. Dry Kibble
For puppies and adult and German shepherds, dry kibble dog food is a good choice since it comes in a large, it is very easy to store and you don’t have to put it inside the refrigerator. It contains all of the nutrients that your dog needs and it is extremely palatable. It comes in different flavors and formulas that they will surely love.
However, this type of dog food is not usually advisable for senior dogs as they might have a hard time biting it.
2. Wet Dog Food
If you have a German shepherd that is only a few months old, getting a wet canned dog food is a good choice. It is easier to chew and your puppy will not have a hard time digesting it.
Wet canned dog food contains about 80 percent water so your dog can easily absorb the nutrients. Since German Shepherds have problems with digestion, this is one of the best foods that you can give them.
If there are leftovers, make sure that you put them inside the refrigerator and remove the food from the can. If you want to feed this to adult dogs, you can combine wet and dry dog foods.
3. Semi-Moist Dog Food
This is very close to wet-canned food and it is also a good choice for picky eaters. If they have a hard time chewing dry dog food and they don’t really like the taste of wet dog food, you can go for semi-moist food. It has 60 percent water content so it is quite different from wet canned food.
However, you should know that this is not the best option for all dogs since it has high sugar and salt. You have to be careful about the brand that you will buy and make sure that you check the ingredients before buying.
4. Freeze-Dried Food
This is not really the best for your dogs, but German Shepherds love freeze-dried food. Basically, it is rich in protein becau8se it is made from real cooked meat and it is put through a process to remove the water content.
The best thing about this is that the dog food will last for many years inside an undamaged package. Since the water is removed from the food, there is no risk of spoiling and your dogs can eat it for a long time. For feeding, just open the package and add water to it.
Top 5 Best Dog Foods for German Shepherds
Looking for the right dog food for your German shepherd is not easy and even if you actually know what to look for, it is pretty hard to find the right one for your dog. You don’t need to worry because we will list down our top 5 dog foods that would provide the nutrients for your German Shepherds.
1. Wellness Core Dry Dog Food for Puppies
As the name suggests, this is a dog formula created for puppies and this is definitely the best choice for your German Shepherds.
This is high-protein dog food for puppies that contains chicken meal, turkey meal, deboned chicken, peas, potato, potato protein as well as chicken fat.
German Shepherd puppies need a lot of protein for their growth and development and this dog food formula is definitely the best in the market.
It is a grain-free formula that can help reduce the risk of allergies and it is the best one out there for dogs with sensitive stomachs like German Shepherds.
The formula includes 36 percent crude protein, 17.5 percent crude fat and about 5 percent crude fiber. It also contains balanced calcium to phosphorous ratio with 1.5 percent and 1.2 percent respectively. It has a calorie count of 417 kcal/cup so your puppies will have a lot of energy while they are growing up.
You have to remember that this dog formula is meant for puppies and it doesn’t contain enough calories and protein to support the needs of an adult German Shepherd.
2. Wellness Complete Health Dog Food for Large Breed Dogs
If you need complete dog food for your German Shepherd, this is the best choice that you have.
Wellness Complete Health Dog Food for Large Breed Dogs contains the right amount of nutrients that your dog needs in order to grow strong and healthy.
If you have a German Shepherd in your house, this dog food formula will surely be a good choice.
It has a chicken and salmon recipe that your dog will surely love. The key ingredients include chicken meal, deboned chicken, ground brown rice, salmon meal, and peas.
All the nutrients that your puppy needs can be found in this particular dog food formula and it will allow them to grow strong and healthy.
The Wellness Complete Health dog food formula includes about 29 percent of crude protein, 13 percent crude fat and 5 percent crude fiber and it has a calcium to phosphorous ratio of 1.3 to 0.9 percent respectively.
You don’t have to look elsewhere because this is the perfect dog food for your German Shepherd puppies. If you think that your puppies need more nutrition and protein, this dog food formula can guarantee that your dog will live healthy and strong.
3. ORIJEN Dry Dog Food
When it comes to adult German Shepherds, you need to be very meticulous on the dog food that you will buy.
It has to be made from high-quality meat sources and it should contain enough protein and calories for the daily needs of your dogs.
Orijen Dry Dog Food fits all the requirements needed for high-quality dog food for your adult German Shepherds. It is made from freeze-dried chicken and turkey, wild herring and flounder and nest-laid eggs.
These ingredients provide a lot of protein for your dogs and it is the main reason why this dog food is one of the best for your large dogs.
It also contains low glycemic fresh fruits as well as vegetables that can make sure that the digestive health of the dogs will be maintained.
This recipe does not have any synthetic protein or additional fats so it is very healthy for your dogs. All of the ingredients are also safe and fresh.
It has a total of 36 percent crude protein, 35 percent crude fat and 5 percent crude fiber. It also has 800 mg/kg of chondroitin and glucosamine that would help keep the joints of your dog strong and healthy.
4. Wellness Complete Health Dry Dog Food for Large Breed
Wellness Complete Health is not only known to create an amazing dog food for puppies because there is also a dog formula made for adult large breeds.
The Wellness Complete Health Dry Dog Food for Large Breed is definitely the best choice for large dog breeds and it is also an affordable dog food.
This adult formula is actually a bit the same with the puppy formula. It also contains a complete dog food that contains all the vitamins and minerals that your German Shepherds would need to grow healthy.
It contains a balanced proportion of healthy fats, protein and grain-free carbs that would fuel the energy needs of your large dogs.
You have to understand that bigger dogs would require more protein and healthy fats because they are more active and they require more energy to move about.
It also provides additional health benefits like stronger joints. It is due to the Glucosamine and chondroitin found in the ingredients. It also contains Vitamin A and calcium that can help build sharp eyes and strong teeth.
For the digestive system, it contains fiber and probiotics to make sure that it will always be healthy.
5. Taste of The Wild Dry Dog Food
Taste of The Wild Dry Dog Food is one of the top favorites in this list simply because it is very tasty for dogs and it can provide complete nutrition to large breeds.
If you have a German Shepherd in your house, you might want to try this extremely palatable dog food. It contains wild game proteins on the recipe, which makes it a very popular choice for dog owners.
It contains roasted quail, smoked turkey and roasted duck that can provide the rich flavor of unique and rare protein sources. It also has K9 strain probiotics that are made for dogs to help with the digestion process.
The Taste of The Wild Dry Dog Food currently has 32 percent crude protein, 18 percent crude fat and 4 percent crude fiber and it contains 375 kcal/cup.
As you can see, German Shepherds might be extremely big, but they are very delicate dogs. They would need a lot of care and support in order to grow strong and healthy. This nature is also the reason why you need to be very picky about what they eat.
Knowing what to look for in dog food can help guarantee that these dogs will stay healthy and they would have enough energy to go through the whole day. Don’t be afraid to try something new, especially if the dog food that you have been giving them is lacking. You can try different dog foods as long as you gradually change the dog formula.