Just like any other canine offspring, your German Shepherd puppy requires a specific quantity and quality of food to keep them nourished all day long. Similar to humans, they also have different levels of nutrition according to their needs. Your young pup’s food intake depends on their age, weight, physical activities, and environmental conditions. If you are doubtful that you’re giving your puppy the adequate nutrition they need, here’s a brief guideline on how to sustain the required nutrition for your puppy.
First Two Months
Your German Shepherd puppy should not be separated from their mother until he reaches two months old. As it is his infancy stage, it will be necessary for him to have the nutrients and antibodies from his mother’s milk. Ending up the first 8 weeks with his mother will be a necessary phase for his body development. Your puppy will learn to eat more complex and solid foods. You may gradually give him a bit of solid food apart from water, but give only small portions to avoid him from having digestive problems.
2 to 3 Months Old
You may start the regular feeding routine with ½ cup dog food with a 1/8 cup of water in every meal 3 times a day. Choose the right type of food that can be easily digested since your pup’s digestive system is not yet fully developed. When buying dog food, ensure that it has the right amount of nutrients, particularly calcium, protein, and calories needed to support your young dog’s developing body. A specific type of meat should also be introduced in determining the proper diet for your puppy.
4 Months Old
At this age, a puppy has a tendency to lose their appetite, which could lead to malnutrition. It is necessary to feed your German Shepherd puppy with healthy food trice daily. A ¾ cup of dog food will be an advisable amount during this period.
6 Months Old
Now that your German Shepherd puppy is considered a full grown puppy, doubling the amount of dog food to 1-1/2 cup served 3 times daily is necessary to keep up with his fast growing body. His food intake must also consist of a high-protein diet to keep up with his increased physical activity. The significantly higher level of protein will be the source of his energy while doing day to day trainings and rough play. Healthy diet is also a source of strong muscles during this age.
1 Year Old
This maturity phase of your puppy is actually the time that they are considered as fully grown dogs. A year old German Shepherd must receive 2-1/2 cups of dog food twice a day. As they require more than just a puppy diet, your 1 year old dog needs a fuller, heftier meal but digestion would also be one of the considerations.
As a responsible owner, you must properly select the appropriate diet for your German Shepherd puppy. You should carefully inspect the food label for the nutritional information and ingredients. In addition, protein-rich diet such as meat should be a staple especially as he begins the crucial physical growth period after the age of four months. The meat-based dog food will provide them more protein, which is needed to build strong muscles and calcium to develop strong bones. Be careful when giving food to your dog as he could be allergic to some grains, and it is highly discouraged. We will get into the benefits of a non-grain diet in a future post. A higher grade of dog food might not be available in grocery stores or your local supermarket but you will find what many options in a local pet store, wherein most of the foods are formulated for your dog’s needs.
Always remember to bring your puppy to the vet for a regular check up and take time and budget to provide the healthiest food that you can afford for your furry friend. You have to remember that your German Shepherd may eat too much but that does not necessarily mean that they have the vitamins and nutrients that they really need. The quality of the food is more important to ensure that they grows into a healthy, smart, and active dog.