German Shepherds are well known for their strength, intelligence, and obedience. When it comes to daily activities, these are one of the most active breeds. They will not laze around your couch waiting for you to take them for a walk. Rather, they find work and keep you busy for the day as well.
For such a fur buddy, you ought to find the best dry dog food for shepherds!
German Shepherds are medium-large sized dogs. On average, their height stands between 22 and 26 inches and they weigh about between 50 and 90 pounds.
And, One of the most important factors that Shepherd owners need to keep in mind is what they are feeding to these beasts.
Best German Shepherd Dog Food Comparison Chart.
German Shepherd Dog Food Review – Our Recommendation.
It is very important to feed your German Shepherd the best quality food instead of poor-quality food that contains a high amount of corn syrup (which is extremely harmful to your dog’s health). So here are some of our recommendations.
Blue Buffalo prioritizes real meat as the main ingredient of their dog foods. This one is specially designed for small breed dogs. When it comes to the diet of a German Shepherd, this is an ideal food for the puppies as it contains high-quality proteins from DE-boned chickens.
These help puppies build and maintain strong and lean muscles. Since German Shepherds are very active from their puppy-hood, the high-quality proteins and carbohydrates fulfill their daily energy needs. The dog food also contains essential vitamins, chelated minerals and antioxidants, and glucosamine.
Its exact combination of antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals chosen by specialist’s support immunity, life-stage necessities, and a strong oxidative residue.
The glucosamine helps develop healthy joint functions and improves overall mobility. It also contains omega 3 and 6 fatty acids, which gives way to a shiny coat and healthy skin.
As a bonus, the Life Protection Formula comes with small bit kibbles, which are perfectly sized and shaped for smaller jaws so they are easier for the puppies to consume. This also helps maintain the dental health of the puppies.
- Good for active small breeds
- Cares dogs prone to cancer
- Good support for dogs with joint problems
- Not a good choice for dogs with grain allergies
- Not for overweight dogs
- Focuses only on small breeds
The Orijen brand has been in the top list of dog food for all these years. But going into 2019, we saw mixed responses among users. Before it was produced in Canada but the recent set up in the US, has created many upsetting events. Users have claimed that the output of the Orijen dry foods are not it was used to be.
But if we talk about Orijen as a product, it’s one of the best in the market.
The food item is protein packed with 43% protein. It has an above average fat level of 21% and just 28% carbohydrate level.
Chicken and turkey are the main sources of protein. You can also find Chicken and turkey liver to contribute to the nutrient level of the food.
It’s a no grain dog food. While many of you would be happy with this combination but think no grain, formula contributes to your dog’s health. But different German Shepherds have different taste and needs, so if it works for you then that you should go for it.
The product has different sorts of legume ingredients. This is also controversial as many users are trying to connect the use of legumes to their sick dogs after eating Orijen.
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Health and growth contribution:
We are just reviewing the food item based on the results before the production of Orijen started in the US. So, we can’t guarantee you the same results now as recent users have noted many changes to the best-selling Orijen formula.
We still couldn’t keep this product out due to its enormous popularity.
The food product is one of the best protein boosters available in the market with an exclusive combination of dietary fiber and fats.
Dogs have been found to become healthy and gain muscles eating this food. Whether or not no grain and the legume-based formula work for you, it’s left for you to decide.
- Provides the highest protein among all other kibbles.
- Rich in nutrients and offers a balanced diet for your German Shepherds.
- Enhances growth rate and helps develop soft skin.
- The best alternative to a raw diet.
- No negative issues judging by the food ingredients but recently users have reported several issues of diarrhea and dogs falling sick.
As it keeps the real meat on top of the priority list, this dog food is designed for adult dogs. When a dog turns into a full grown one from a puppy, its demands for daily supply of proteins and carbohydrates change accordingly. Another important thing which a dog needs in the grown-up stage is strong bones and teeth.
Life Protection Formula Natural Adult Dry Dog food offers the right amount of calcium, phosphorus and essential vitamins for a grown-up dog to maintain strong healthy bones and teeth.
Fortunately, this does not exclude other important ingredients like minerals and antioxidants, which help in maintaining immunity, life-stage necessities, and a strong oxidative residue. The right amount of glucosamine helps to keep the joints strong while omega 3 and 6 fatty acids keep the coat shiny and the skin healthy.
On another very important note, this dog food does not contain any artificial materials like corn syrup and soy. It only includes high-quality proteins and carbohydrates from real deboned chickens.
- Good for bone development
- Includes high – quality proteins
- Does not contain artificial ingredients
- Not ideal for less active dogs and puppies
- Expensive than average dog food
The Precise Holistic Complete as the name suggests is the most complete food item out of the 5 on this list. Most users have vouched for this product and are happy with the outcome.
Top ingredients used
The food item is packed with chicken protein, lamb and salmon meals. So, your dogs gain guaranteed nutrition. The combined use of protein, fruits, and veg makes this food one of the best rated German Shepherd dog foods in the market.
Health and growth contribution:
We have seen dog owners praising this food item for healing Panosteitis in their dogs. That’s quite something to take note.
The food is high energy packed that is highly suitable for big dogs that work or play. Highly recommended for the development of the nervous, immune and skeletal system of your dogs.
- Specially made for large breed puppies. So, if you want to feed your German Shepherd puppies, this dog food should give you positive results.
- Complete dog food that impacts your dogs’ immune and nervous system. Many users reported their dogs gaining good muscles and strong bones.
- Has less filler, and lots of vital nutrients. So, you will hardly need supplements.
- Food ingredients that might cause allergies are avoided in this product. The best part is that your dogs might get saved from certain allergies eating this food.
- Apart from the price, we don’t think this German Shepherd dog food has negative issues. But if you are feeding 4 cups a day and keeping in mind the benefits of the product, that money is totally worth it.
Not all dogs are equally active! German Shepherds are popular as working-class dogs. It can be said without a doubt that working-class dogs need to maintain a very healthy diet for their daily activities.
Herein, the Natural Adult Healthy Weight Dry Dog Food offers high-quality proteins from de-boned chickens and the L carnitine present in the food helps the dogs maintain strong and lean muscles.
It also offers reduced calories from fat. Fatty foods can be very harmful to a working-class dog but fat makes the food more delicious. Keeping that in mind, this dog food offers reduced calories from fat while causing no harm to taste.
The regular supply of glucosamine and omega 3 and 6 fatty acids are also available, helping maintain strong joints and healthy skin respectively. Essential vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants are there to help the dog maintain strong immunity for its day-to-day activities.
- Focuses on muscle development
- Reduced calories
- Maintains all over nutrition needs
- Not for overweight dogs and puppies
- Comparatively expensive
Issues with German Shepherd’s digestion is the most common pain point among owners. So, if you are one of them, we would say in 80% of the cases, The Royal Canin can solve this problem.
Top ingredients used
Although we are not a great fan of the ingredients Royal Canin use but sure they work like wonder. The Chicken by-product, rice, chicken fat is some of them worth mentioning.
But the best part is there are no fillers like wheat and Soy which are a big no-no for your dogs.
Health support that can outperform other brands:
German Shepherds has difficulties with digesting food properly. Because of the cribble size and unique blend of ingredients In Royal Canine, most dogs were cured of their digestion problems.
The Stool quality will also likely improve with this food. If you are facing trouble with smelly stool and part of your dogs, then we would highly recommend this brand.
This happens mainly because of longer colon transit time which means the stool ferments longer. With highly digestible L.I.P proteins, the absorption process becomes smooth.
Skin and coat conditions are found to improve and flourish with its use. This is because of an exclusive combination of nutrients added to the food ingredients.
- Dogs with digestion problems will be highly benefited. The food is easy to digest and removes bad odor from the stool.
- Exclusive nutrients promote good skin and impressive coat growth. Best for getting rid of your dog’s hot spots.
- The food is tasty, and most GSDs will eat them with joy. If your dogs eat less, you can try this brand to see positive results.
- As the food is rich in fats, the chances of developing obesity cannot be disregarded. Feeding once a day would be optimal.
At number four, this dog food is created to mirror the diet of the ancestral wolves which are related to the modern-day dog families. This is what explains the high availability of proteins and carbohydrates in this dog food.
Apart from that, the Wilderness Rocky Mountain Recipe high protein grain free dog food offers high-quality protein from de-boned red meat. This not only helps to produce healthy muscles but also makes them strong.
Depending on the activities of dogs, this dog food is ideal for extremely active dogs since this is a diet that mirrors the diet of wolves. These particular dog food recipes contain a high amount of glucose, calcium, and phosphorus, which helps to develop strong and healthy joints, bones, and teeth.
Essential proteins and carbohydrates ensure that the energy demands for daily activities are filled. Moreover, an optimal balance between omega 3 and 6 fatty acids ensures proper skin care. No artificial flavours, colors , corn syrup or soy is used in this dog food.
- Contains high – quality proteins.
- Supports proper bone development.
- Good source of energy for active dogs.
- Red meat might cause allergies.
- Not for dogs with stomach problems.
- Focused on active breeds.
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The Redpaw X-series is debatably one of the best dog food for your German Shepherd in the market. It’s packed with proteins and additional carbohydrates to give your pets a balanced diet.
For overweight and mostly indoor dogs, the ‘Redpaw X-Series Maintain’ should help them maintain appropriate weight balance and increase energy.
Notable ingredients used in the food
With 29% protein, 16% fat and 45% carbohydrate there’s a lot to praise and debate about this food.
It’s mainly a plant-based meal but with useful components. There’s oatmeal in this food which is a good source of B-vitamins and dietary fiber. We can’t really vouch for the use of barley here but won’t cause any side effects either.
Protein sources are mainly animal based. Chicken is the primary components with chicken meal and chicken fat to complement the protein intake.
If you are looking for omega 3-fatty acid rich food, then Redpaw X-series will not disappoint you. We found flaxseeds in the ingredient list that is the main source of omega 3-fatty acid and additional protein.
Health and growth contribution:
If you are worried about your dog’s liquid or semi-solid stool, giving this food to them should solve this issue. The food is digested easily, and you will see a gradual decrease in your dog’s stool amount.
Proved to serve as a power charger for dogs. With steady use, you should see positive energy and health benefits like Beautiful coat and stable digestion in them.
- Best for dogs having liquid stool issue.
- Digested easily with a decreased amount of stool.
- Protein-packed diet ensures your pet’s energy level remains high and gain proper nutrition.
- Plant-based ingredients compliment quite well with the animal proteins. Stable balanced feed.
- The brewer’s yeast in the ingredient list is controversial. If your dog has allergy issues with yeast, you can avoid the product.
This dog food is specifically designed for adult large breed dogs. Blue Buffalo’s Life Protection Formula Natural Adult contains the essential amount of glucose and chondroitin, which supports the development of healthy and strong joints, making the overall body structure strong.
This has a big impact on the mobility of the dog as well. Protein from real de-boned chickens and L carnitine helps develop lean and strong muscles (which is very important for large breed dogs). The calcium and phosphorus present in the food help develop strong bones and teeth.
The essential protein and carbohydrate take care of the daily energy supply, which keeps the dogs active and lively. Essential vitamins and minerals help build immunity, keeping the dogs safe from diseases and other health issues.
Be 100% sure that no poultry chicken or artificial flavor is used to produce this dog food. Moreover, it does not contain any corn syrup at all.
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- Good for older dogs
- Supports dogs with joint problems
- Easy to digest
- Not ideal for puppies and dogs with grain allergies
- Focused on large breed or senior dogs
If your German Shepherds have breath that could kill even a dragon, then this should be the product of your choice. It’s made to serve as a treat for your dogs, and we haven’t found any dogs yet who don’t love these Breath Buster Bites.
Ingredients used in this treat.
There’s plea flour clearly mentioned in the ingredients list. It’s rich in protein and dietary fiber, excellent for your dogs.
Next is Gelatin which is also a good source of protein. Although we can’t vouch for the essential amino acid content of this gelatin protein.
We found two controversial food components like pea protein and powdered cellulose. Although both these components have no additional side effects, they don’t contribute much to your dog’s health.
The best part is there is no grain ingredient in the food and won’t hurt the digestion process.
Special breath freshening system:
The ingredients used in this food are combined together to make one of the best breath fresheners for German Shepherds.
The aroma and flavor added to this food are quite remarkable. The better your dogs’ breath smells, the closer you can be with them.
- No stinky flavor used. Fresh minty apple flavor gives your dogs clean breath and a great treat.
- Best results can be seen in young adults as they are small in size. But you should break them into pieces before serving.
- No problems in digesting them and free from grain ingredients.
- Apple flavor is the most recommended version of this product. It will provide the best results in your dogs.
- Overpriced for the quantity this brand offers.
- Only a few pieces in each packet. But if your dog loves them and gets rid of bad breath, then it’s worth spending a little more.
What to Feed a German Shepherd?
The food requirement of German Shepherds is different from that of other breeds. The fact that they are very active and strong makes them a sensitive breed when it comes to food. You cannot just feed anything to your German Shepherd!
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They might eat it but they may not digest it properly, bringing a bad impact on their health. These Shepherds are usually carnivores in nature. This implies that the main ingredient in their diet is protein.
A grown-up German Shepherd needs a proper supply of protein on a regular basis. It is recommended that at least 22% of Shepherd’s everyday meal should be protein.
Although this breed is very sensitive to fat, the proper amount of protein in an everyday meal does not come without a proper amount of fat. Feeding your German Shepherd too much fatty food can be harmful to its health.
On the other hand, if you feed it less fatty food or no fatty food at all, that might have severe impacts on its double-layered coal. If a German Shepherd is not supplied a proper amount of fat every day, it might catch skin diseases. The dog requires about 5-8% of fat in its meal on a daily basis.
The Important thing to keep in mind: Every German Shepherd has its own unique food digestion system and taste bud. You might see some food items work wonders for your neighbors and the same food might cause allergy or diarrhea in your pets. Try 2 or 3 food items slowly before you find the right one.
German Shepherd Calorie breakdown chart.
|Junior and young adult||1500-1700|
|Adult (fully grown)||2000-2250|
What Makes the Best Food for German Shepherd?
When it comes to buying dog foods, there are certain factors that you need to keep in mind, such as the age of your dog, the breed of your dog and most importantly, the daily nutrition requirement of your dog.
If your dog is very active as a German Shepherd, the most important things that it needs in the daily meal are lots of proteins and carbohydrates. Now, the question you may ask is, do only protein and carbohydrate make a dog food ideal for your dog?
The answer is no. Although they do need a lot of proteins and carbohydrates, you also need to think about other factors like, “Is this dog food going to help your dog build a strong immune system?” and “Is this food helping your dog develop strong bones and muscles?”
Most cheap dog foods available in the market do not fulfill these needs. So, what makes a dog food ideal?
There is no particular answer to that question but we can say that the food that meets the daily nutrition needs of your dog is the ideal dog food. It may differ from breed to breed. However, a few common factors should be maintained while buying dog foods.
- The number of Proteins: An ideal meal for a dog should contain at least 22% of proteins. Proteins help dogs stay active and help them gain energy.
- Low Fat: Although fat makes the food more delicious, too much fatty food can be harmful to dogs. Then again, if there is no fat at all, it can be harmful to the dog’s skin. Ideal dog food should contain 5%-6% of fat.
- A balance of Omega 3 And 6 Fatty Acids: A proper balance of Omega 3 and 6 fatty acids can help dogs develop healthy skin and keep their coats shiny.
- Vitamins And Minerals: Essential vitamins and minerals can help dogs maintain strong immunity.
- Natural Food: Food made from natural meat can help in developing healthy muscles. On the other hand, artificial flavor, corn syrup, and soy can be harmful to the dog’s health.
Frequently Asked Questions:
The German shepherd is an aggressive dog so it needs proper food. Every dog, from puppies to adults, needs proper food and nutrition. It is wiser to go for natural dog food, rather than the cheap dog foods available in the market.
Owners should be aware of their dogs’ nutritional demands and in this specific case, feed them the dog food for German shepherd accordingly.