The German shepherd has always been one of the most popular breeds. It is large and strong, can become for his master a great helper, a guard, a companion, to perform official tasks. The dog is well trained, can easily adapt to different living conditions.
Shepherd is a fairly large size, accordingly, her diet should be given great importance, here it is necessary to consider not only the caloric content and the composition of the diet, but also the dog’s character and her upcoming physical exertion. Feeding a German shepherd should be taken very seriously, especially if you have a little puppy. You must know from the beginning what food he needs, because proper nutrition directly affects the health of your pet.
The German shepherd is quite active by nature, agile and spends a lot of time in the fresh air, and therefore energy costs of its body is very large and only high-quality diet is able to fully compensate for these costs. However, it is very important not to overfeed your dog because the more volume of food, the worse it can be digested.
Therefore, in order not to overload the stomach, but to give all the energy which is necessary for the shepherd, she needs food with the highest degree of accessibility — more than 85%. And also, you should know that to feed this breed needs 2 times a day, so the body of the animal to better digest and assimilate food.
German shepherds by nature have a rather poor ability to rapid digestion. Another feature and danger in feeding this breed, is that the stomach they are able to greatly change its volume. For example, if in the quiescent state a volume of 0.5 liters after a heavy meal it increases to 7 liters. Such changes are very dangerous to the health of your pet and can lead to serious disease — the twisting of the stomach, the propensity for which increases with age.
And also, shepherds can suffer from diseases of the pancreas and diarrhea, more often than representatives of other breeds. There have and increased susceptibility to food allergies. For prevention of these diseases veterinarians recommend feeding Pets dry food, which is designed for large dogs of this breed. Many breeders also believe that dry food is the best food for German shepherds.
Each owner needs to decide which diet to choose for your pet and feed him any prepared food or self-prepared food, but we should not forget that these both forms of power have both advantages and disadvantages.
What to feed a German shepherd
There are two types of food for German shepherds, it is traditional, when the owner prepares his pet and dry — canned product, which is sold in special shops.
Feeding dry food
If you choose for feeding German shepherd dry food, it certainly has its advantages: it is not necessary to cook, it has a long storage period, easy in transport, easy-to-use trip. And also the daily rate of this type of power is quite small.
There are the following types of dry feed:
- Economy class is not recommended for German shepherds, since its composition includes offal and a lot of fiber of low quality. This food is not sufficiently balanced, it lacks in some minerals and vitamins. The product has a low energy value, it has great flow.
- Premium — contains products of better quality, suitable for everyday feeding of adult dogs. Usually it includes meat and vegetable additives necessary for digestion. This food has high energy value, so he spent a day more efficiently.
- Premium plus — the product is suitable for the daily feeding of dogs of any age, pregnant and lactating females has a rather good composition.
- The super class is intended for everyday feeding actively growing and age, pregnant and lactating dogs. Recommended for Pets with sensitive digestion and are prone to weight gain. For its production uses only the best products: meat of the highest class, grits, cereal. This food has the best energy value and is ideal for feeding a German shepherd.
- Holistic — suitable for the following species: the elderly suffering from chronic diseases and health problems, are prone to weight gain, allergies. And with the success of this kind of power can be used for feeding of young and pregnant dogs.
Feed your pet dry food must be strictly according to the norms and do not forget that the dog always has access to water. For feeding dogs, of course, it is best to choose food of super premium class. Before buying a product we must carefully examine the packaging to know how you can distinguish fake and which of the manufacturers produces the best food to date.
Remember that dry food can be quite poorly absorbed, because the body of each animal is different. You can take note that many veterinarians consider appropriate feeding such feed in the early development of the breed when they need a lot of vitamins and nutrients, and then switch on natural food.
Natural diet German shepherd
It is believed that it is better to feed a German shepherd a natural diet, because the fresh and quality food is better assimilated and contains many nutrients. In this case, of course, have to spend a lot of time to prepare such food to choose and buy good products, compose a menu for a week, to cook. Although the dog is not require a daily changing dishes, but it is advisable to do to her body receives all the Essentials.
Natural diet is a diverse diet of raw and heat-treated products. It should not be forgotten that the representatives of this breed are prone to food allergies and if you notice any reaction to cooked food for your pet, then you need to eliminate allergens from his diet, or feed dry and hypoallergenic food.
Here is a list of allowed foods:
- And boiled lean beef or pork, poultry without bones, skin and fat. Fit and meat by-products that need pre-boil. It is not recommended to give the kidney, and the liver only in small quantities.
- Does not contain fat, ocean fish, boiled or raw, after the deep freeze. Fish should pre-boil and clean the bones.
- Milk will do for your pet if it will not provoke a bowel disorder.
- Any dairy products, natural and without dyes. Very useful the use of cottage cheese, as it contains a lot of calcium.
- Eggs chicken and quail. Raw, scrambled or boiled, but remember that they can offer your pet every day.
- Any cereal, especially buckwheat and rice. Suitable wheat, barley, oatmeal.
- Vegetables can be given very different, especially those like the German shepherd. Cabbage must be boiled, the potatoes must be fresh, corn — raw, in small amounts.
- Fruits offer any, except the exotic, not to cause allergic reactions. As treats dogs prefer citrus, which perfectly fit her body, just don’t give them much and often. Do not forget that peaches, apricots and plums can cause diarrhea in your pet.
- Berries let in small quantities, the ash, and currants.
- Seeds and nuts, pumpkin seeds peeled, pine nuts, almonds.
- Vegetable oil. You can add it to the finished porridge.
- Dietary Supplement — bone meal, yeast, vitaminoterapie oil, salt in small quantities.
Products banned German shepherd:
- And acute tubular bones. Cancellous bone also will not bring your dog any good, only harm the teeth of your dog.
- Different sweets and chocolate and foods that contain sweeteners and preservatives.
- Pasta, pastry, muffin.
- Sausage and meat products.
- Millet, semolina, corn porridge.
- Legumes grains bring no benefit to the animal. The only product of beans, which can be given in reasonable quantities, it’s peanuts.
- It is forbidden grapes and raisins, walnuts, pistachios, acorns.
- In any case, cannot be added to prepared food to the dogs, no spices.
What diet the right puppy?
The most important part of life German shepherd is a period of growth at a young age. The baby is growing rapidly, the skeleton and muscles are formed, but if you overfeed — obesity is assured. It is therefore very important to correctly make the puppy’s diet. Younger dogs, caution should give calcium, as its overdose can cause mutations, and the excess of protein, within reason, puppies are not hurt.
No matter what kind of food you prefer to give your pet, it needs to eat in a certain pattern:
- A month or two — cups of food, divided into 6 receptions.
- Two or three months — 1.5 cups for 5 sets.
- Three to six months — 1 litre of feed for 4 doses.
- Six to twelve months — 1.5 liters for 3 sets.
When the puppy turns a year, he was transferred to adult eating schedule and it is recommended to feed 2 times a day. Try to observe mode, this has a favorable effect on the gastrointestinal tract. It is necessary to monitor the amount of food, but because the rapid weight gain is threatened by diseases of joints and spine.
The composition of the diet of young and adult dogs must include the following vitamins and minerals:
- Proteins. They should be 30% of the daily value, when they lack the immunity that can adversely affect the development of muscles, joints and your pet can get sick.
- Fats. Very the dog needs both plant and animal origin. Their number should be about 2.5 grams per 1 kg of animal weight.
- Carbohydrates. Help the digestive system, their number per day is 16 grams per 1 kg of body weight.
- Vitamins. We should not forget that, in addition to use, they may adversely affect the health of your pet. For example, from an overdose of a large amount of calcium and vitamins D and A may not be able to develop the skeletal system of a dog is also their excess can cause a volvulus.
Rules of feeding shepherd
There are certain rules for feeding of this breed of dogs it is advisable to adhere to your pet has always been healthy:
- The regularity of supply. Foods to give at the same time.
- To feed the pet 2 times a day.
- The temperature of the food should be warm. Do not give hot or cold.
- The animal should always be a bowl of clean water.
- Food should be thick, since a dog’s stomach poorly absorbs liquid food.
When buying utensils for feeding dogs try to give preference enamelled or metal types, and the best and convenient option is the double bowl that is designed for water and food. It is desirable that it have the correct location on the chest of the animal, so choose the dishes on a stand.