When should I change my German Shepherd puppy to adult dog food? This is a very controversial topic. I'll bet if you asked 10 dog owners this question you'd get 10 different answers.
Growing puppies should only be fed a high quality puppy diet which you need to continue feeding until your dog reaches 80 to 90 percent of his anticipated adult weight.
For many German Shepherd puppies, this occurs usually around 8 to 9 months of age. You can also consider switching your puppy over to adult food even later - any time up to 10 to 16 months depending on the individual dog/puppy.
Keep in mind that individual German Shepherd puppies growth rates will vary greatly from dog to dog. If your puppy is growing exceptionally quickly, you might want to ask your vet about switching your GSD puppy to adult food even sooner.
And how will you know if your puppy is growing faster than most, you may ask? Well, for one thing I would check with your own GSD breeder.
And if you didn't get your German Shepherd puppy from a breeder, for example, if you got your puppy from a rescue organization or from a shelter (or maybe some other source) I would then suggest speaking with your veterinarian about your pups growth rate and when the change in diet should occur.
• Once your German Shepherd puppy has reached the stage to change him over to adult food, gradually begin changing his diet by feeding 1/4 adult food and 3/4 puppy food for several days (about 4 to 7 days*).
• Next, feed your puppy 1/2 adult food and 1/2 puppy food for several days*.
• After a few more days have passed, start feeding your puppy 3/4 adult food and 1/4 puppy food each meal, again for 4 to 7 days or so.
• Now, once you have completed the previous phase, you can begin feeding your puppy nothing but adult dog food.
You may wonder why you don't just start feeding your puppy adult food in just one meal or so. That's just asking for trouble.
There's a really good reason for this slow transition from one type of dog food to another - to avoid upsetting your dog's intestinal tract or causing diarrhea.
If you were to just drastically switch from one food to another without this transition period you will have runny poops and just overall messy poops and a puppy with an upset stomach. And this can be easily avoided by following the transition as suggested above.
And for adult GSD's, I always suggest feeding a good quality dry food only.
You don't need to supplement a good quality dry dog food with any type
of canned food. A good dry food is an excellent choice for a growing
German Shepherd in many respects and it is very beneficial to their
teeth as canned foods can cause many problems with tooth decay.
"Dogs laugh, but they laugh with their tails. What puts man in a higher state of evolution is that he has got his laugh on the right end." - Max Eastman
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Thank you for this web site. Very informative and well written. I
often advise my shepherd people to visit here for information. Again
Laura Page Warden
What a fabulous website!!! I really enjoyed reading about the history of the dogs. There is a ton of helpful information on here and defiantly something for every reader to enjoy!!!
Recently got a GSD again. Last time had GSD no internet etc. Cant believe how much info for free. Kenneth
I love and appreciate the helpful advice I found on your website!