5 Best Dog Food for German Shepherds Reviews (Updated 2019)

5 Best Dog Food For German Shepherds ReviewsKnown for their confidence, determination, courageousness, and keen intelligence, the German shepherd is one of the most beloved canines in the world. Originally bred in German for herding and guarding sheep, this large breed dog is a dog lover’s delight.

This breed is easily one of the most intelligent and determined of all breeds; they can learn virtually any task in a dog training book with very little effort; and once this dog learns a task, he will know it forever. You’ll have no problem walking him on a dog collar or a dog harness; this breed should certainly not need a leash for dogs that pull. They are very loyal companions and will do their very best to protect their human family.

In addition to being an intelligent, protective, loyal, hard-working, and good-natured dog, the German shepherd is also quite attractive. Their graceful curves, pointed ears, angular face, and bushy coat is quite stunning. But, do be advised that this breed does require regular grooming. Because of their thick double coat, they must be washed with a high-quality dog shampoo and combed out with a well designed dog brush in order to keep their fur under control. Regular brushing will prevent mats and keep shedding to a minimum. Using a pair of dog grooming clippers to trim back the fur every once in a while is also advised. Of course, you should also keep a German shepherd’s nails trimmed with a decent pair of nail clippers for dogs. It’s a wise idea to invest in a vacuum for dog hair, too, in order to make it easier to keep things neat and clean during the height of shedding season.

You’ll also want to have a nice selection of interactive dog toys, such as puzzle toys for dogs or automatic fetch machines. As mentioned, this breed is extremely intelligent, and as a herding dog, they have a lot of energy, so they do need to be kept entertained.

In addition to these care tips, there’s something else that you don’t want to overlook when it comes to caring for a German shepherd, and that’s feeding him a well-balanced diet of highly nutritious dog food. Like all canine breeds, the German shepherd must be fed the right balance of essential nutrients; however, the nutritional needs of this breed do differ from the nutritional needs of other canines. If you want to maintain the overall health and well being of your furry friend, and you want to ensure that he lives a long and happy life, then you are definitely going to want to feed him a top quality food.

But, with so many different dog food brands on the market, and so many different kinds of food – from dry dog food to wet dog food, and from organic dog food to low sodium dog food, how do you know what is the best dog food for German shepherd? We’ve done the legwork for you and have narrowed down all of the different options to what we considered to be the top five dog food options for German shepherds.

German Shepherd Dog Food Review Center 2019

Now that you’ve had a look at our top picks for the best German shepherd food, let’s take a closer look at each option. Below, we offer a detailed overview of each food, including an ingredient profile, what we like about them, and what other pet parents who have used each product have had to say. Once you have finished reading through the reviews and decide on an option that you think will best meet the needs of your furry best friend, click on the buttons to find the best prices currently available on Chewy and Amazon.

#1 – Royal Canin Breed Health Nutrition German Shepherd Adult Dry Dog Food

Royal Canin Breed Health Nutrition German Shepherd Adult Dry Dog Food Product ImageOur first pick for the best German shepherd dog food is an option that comes from Royal Canin. Pet parents have been entrusting the health and nutrition of their four-legged family members to Royal Canin dog food for decades. That’s because this manufacturer utilizes the highest quality ingredients and creates a variety of formulas to meet the dietary needs of dogs of all breeds, sizes, and ages. Their Breed Health Nutrition German Shepherd Adult Dry Dog Food is specifically made for German shepherds, as the name implies.

German shepherds are known for having sensitive digestive systems, so they do well with a dog food for sensitive stomachs.  The first ingredient is brewer’s rice, a carbohydrate that will fuel your pup’s high energy level, but is also easy on the GI tract, so it won’t aggravate that delicate tummy. It also contains brown rice and oat groats, which are also easy to digest carbs. Chicken serves as the primary source of protein, as it is the second ingredient in this formula. The protein content and the infusion of essential nutrients that strengthen the bones and joints, such as DHA and EPA, will help to stave off hip dysplasia, a condition that German shepherds are very prone to. This recipe also contains biotin and other nutrients that help to prevent dry skin and other skin problems, something else that this breed is prone to. Additionally, it will keep your pup’s fluffy coat thick, healthy, and lustrous. Based on the reviews that we read, most pet owners are very pleased with this food and say that their furry friends’ seem to love the taste. However, do be aware that it does contain wheat gluten and corn gluten, so if your pup is sensitive to gluten-based products, it might cause complications.

What We Like About It

  • Specifically formulated for German shepherds
  • Easy to digest
  • Supports joint health
  • Improves skin and coat health
  • Infused with a variety of essential nutrients that German shepherds need to thrive

Reasons to Complain

  • Some users said that they weren’t pleased with the quality of the food
  • Others said that they think it caused stomach upset

Final Verdict: To ensure that your pet is getting the breed-specific nutrition that he needs, Royal Canin Breed Health Nutrition German Shepherd Adult Dry Dog Food is a great choice. It’s made specifically for German shepherds and addresses the health issues that this breed is prone to; however, do note that it does contain gluten-based products.

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#2 – Natural Balance Limited Ingredients Diets Dry Dog Food

Natural Balance Limited Ingredient Diets Dry Dog Food Product ImageNatural Balance dog food is another premium quality pet food, and their Limited Ingredients Diets Dry Dog Food will certainly meet the nutritional needs of your German shepherd. This breed is prone to a variety of health issues, such as gastrointestinal upset and skin problems, and Natural Balance’s Limited Ingredients Diets Dry Dog Food addresses these issues. Since it’s a limited ingredient formula, it can be considered a dog food for allergies; something that German shepherds are prone to.

The first ingredient in this formula is sweet potatoes, which are a natural and easy to digest carbohydrate; other carbs include brewer’s dried yeast and potatoes, so your pup’s sensitive tummy won’t be aggravated. The protein in this formula is sourced from venison, a premium and easily digestible source of protein. Many German shepherds are sensitive to proteins that are commonly featured in a lot of dog food formulas, such as chicken and beef; however, they tend to accept venison very well. This kibble is fortified with essential nutrients that will support the development of lean muscle mass and strong joints, so it can help to prevent problems like hip dysplasia and arthritis. Vitamin E, biotin, and vitamin B12 will keep your pet’s skin healthy and coat full and shiny. The majority of the reviews that we read indicate that pet owners seem to be very pleased with the product; however, some customers did say that their pups weren’t too keen on the food.

What We Like About It

  • Limited ingredient formula
  • Venison is the primary source of protein
  • Contains sweet potatoes and other easy to digest carbohydrates
  • Nurtures joint and skin health
  • Free of artificial colors, flavors, and preservatives

Reasons to Complain

  • Some customers said that their pets didn’t seem to like the taste
  • Others said that it had a pungent odor

Final Verdict: Since Natural Balance Limited Ingredient Diets Dry Dog Food contains only a handful of ingredients, it’s an ideal choice for the noble and courageous, yet delicate German shepherd.

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#3 – Eukanuba German Shepherd Adult Dry Dog Food

Eukanuba German Shepherd Adult Dry Dog Food Product ImageNext up on our list is a Eukanuba dog food that is specially formulated specifically for adult German shepherds. This recipe addresses the specific health concerns of this breed by incorporating premium quality ingredients that will support your furry pal’s nutritional needs.

High quality, natural animal-based proteins, such as chicken and fish meal, will help to foster the development of lean muscle mass and support your pet’s joints in order to prevent issues like hip dysplasia. Easy to digest carbohydrates, like brewer’s rice, won’t upset your GSD (as German shepherds are often called) sensitive stomach. The infusion of essential fatty acids will nourish your four-legged family member’s skin and keep his coat looking great. This formula also has a reduced fat and calorie content, so if a dog food for weight loss has been recommended for your GSD, filling your pup’s dog bowl with this kibble will help him maintain a healthy weight. A specialized fiber system encourages maximum nutrient absorption to promote optional health. Lastly, the 3D Dentadefense System will keep your pet’s teeth strong and healthy; in fact, it has been proven to minimize tartar buildup within 28 days of eating! Most of the reviews that we read indicate that pet parents are quite happy with this breed specific formula from Eukanuba; however, there were some complaints about the quality of the product that they purchased online, claiming that it seems to be a lot different from what they purchase at the pet store.

What We Like About It

  • Specially made to meet the nutritional needs of German shepherds
  • The 3D Dentadefense System helps to promote optimal dental health
  • The low calorie and fat content maintains a healthy weight
  • A specialized fiber system encourages maximum nutrient absorption
  • Infused with essential vitamins, minerals, and nutrients
  • Easy to digest

Reasons to Complain

  • Some customers said that they think the product the purchased online is different from what they buy in the store
  • Others have said that the kibble was very crumbly when they received it

Final Verdict: Eukanuba German Shepherd Adult Dry Dog Food is specially formulated for GSDs. It’s made with premium quality ingredients to support optimal nutrition.

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#4 – Royal Canin Breed Health Nutrition German Shepherd Puppy Dry Dog Food

Royal Canin Breed Health Nutrition German Shepherd Puppy Dry Dog Food Product ImageIf you are the proud parent of a GSD puppy and he has been cleared by a vet to go off of his mother’s milk or a puppy milk replacer and start eating solid food, Royal Canin’s Breed Health Nutrition German Shepherd Puppy Dry Dog Food is a great option. This formula is recommended for puppies that are between the ages of 8 weeks and 15 months (but do make sure that you check with your vet before offering solid food). It contains the essential nutrients that growing German shepherds need to thrive.

This puppy food is made with easily digestible carbohydrates, such as brewer’s rice (which is the first ingredient), brown rice, and oat groats, so it won’t aggravate the delicate developing gastrointestinal system. Chicken meal is the primary source of protein. It’s easier to digest than solid chicken and it contains vital amino acids that support the development of lean muscle mass and strengthen the joints to prevent joint health complications. The infusion of essential vitamins, minerals, and nutrients, such as vitamin E and vitamin B12, promote healthy skin, a healthy coat, and a stronger immune system. Lastly, the kibble is designed for a puppy’s smaller mouth; it’s easier to pick up and easier to chew, thereby encouraging chewing and promoting healthier teeth. Most of the reviews that we read were positive, with pet parents saying that they were very pleased with the product; but, do be advised that it contains gluten-based ingredients, like corn and wheat, so if your pet is sensitive to grains, it might cause adverse reactions.

What We Like About It

  • Specially formulated for GSD puppies between the ages of 8 weeks and 15 months
  • Smaller kibble is easier to eat, encourages chewing, and supports stronger teeth
  • Supports a GSD puppy’s developing immune system and GI tract
  • Easy to digest
  • Strengthens the skin and coat

Reasons to Complain

  • It does contain wheat and corn, so if your pup is sensitive to gluten, irritations may occur

Final Verdict: Overall, we are very pleased with Royal Canin’s Breed Health Nutrition German Shepherd Puppy Dry Dog Food. It’s specially formulated to promote optimal health for growing GSD puppies.

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#5 – Nutro Max Grain Free Natural Adult Dry Dog Food

Nutro Max Grain Free Natural Adult Dry Dog Food Product ImageLast, but most definitely not least, on our list of the best dog food for German shepherds is an option that comes from Nutro dog food. This formula is made with all natural ingredients and because it’s a completely grain free dog food, it won’t cause complications for GSDs who are sensitive to gluten-based products, like corn, wheat, and soy.

The primary source of protein in this Nutro Max recipe is real lamb, which not only offers a fantastic taste, but also provides a wealth of amino acids, the building blocks of strong muscles and joints. Chickpeas, peas, and other natural ingredients add to the palatable flavor of this formula, as well as the nutritional content. It’s also infused with a variety of essential nutrients that German shepherds need to thrive, such as vitamin B6, vitamin A, thiamine, vitamin D3, and folic acid. The reviews indicate that this Nutro Max recipe is ideal for GSDs and that pet parents are very happy with the product. But, there were some concerns about the quality of the kibble, as some customers said that it was quite crumbly when they received it.

What We Like About It

  • Grain free
  • Made with all natural ingredients
  • Real lamb is the primary source of protein
  • Infused with essential vitamins and minerals
  • Palatable flavor
  • Easy to digest

Reasons to Complain

  • Some customers said that the kibble was very crumbly

Final Verdict: For an easy to digest food that won’t stomach upset or skin irritations, Nutro Max Grain Free Natural Adult Dry Dog Food is a fantastic choice.

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Buyer’s Guide to the Best Dog Food for German Shepherds

Your German shepherd is more than a pet; he’s a member of your family. Just like any other member of your family, you want to make sure you are providing him with the very best of care so that he can live a long, happy, and healthy life. The food that you feed your GSD is vital for his overall health and well-being. This breed is prone to a number of health issues, and feeding your pooch a premium quality pet food that offers balanced nutrition can help to prevent the development of complications.

What are the nutritional needs of a German shepherd? What type of health issues is the breed prone to? In this portion of our review, you’ll find the answers to these questions so you can make the best choice for your four-legged family member.

What are the Nutritional Needs of a German Shepherd?

All canine breeds need to eat a healthy, well-balanced diet that supports their nutritional needs, and the GSD is no different. The dietary requirements of this breed include:

  • Premium quality protein. The German shepherd is quite muscular, and since protein is the building block of lean muscles, a diet that is rich in premium proteins, like lamb, venison, and fish, will support and strengthen his muscles.
  • Healthy fats. GSDs require a low to moderate level of healthy fats, such as omega 3 and omega 6 fatty acids, as they help to repair tissues and cells and promote skin and coat health.
  • Complex carbs. This breed is quite active and requires carbs to fuel their energy levels; however, they should be fed complex carbs, like whole grains, as they take longer to digest and will prevent unnecessary weight gain.

What Health Conditions are German Shepherds Prone To?

Though the German shepherd is a strong, courageous, and loyal breed, they are, unfortunately, prone to a number of health conditions. These issues include:

  • Hip dysplasia. Large breed dogs, including the GSD, tend to have a predisposition to hip dysplasia, a condition that can be very painful and significantly reduce mobility.
  • Another joint issue that is common among large breeds, such as the GSD. This problem often affects older dogs and is marked by joint pain and reduced mobility.
  • Sensitive skin. This breed is prone to skin issues, such as dry, itchy, and flaky skin.
  • Food allergies. The GSD is also known for food allergies; particularly grains. These allergies can complicate skin problems and cause gastrointestinal upset.
  • This condition occurs when the intestines or stomach twist and entrap gas within; it can be fatal.

By feeding your dog a diet that is made of premium quality ingredients and rich in the essential nutrients that the German shepherd requires, you can help to ensure that the furriest member of your family maintains a healthy, active, and happy lifestyle.

Wrapping It Up

German shepherds have specific dietary needs that are unique to their breed. By offering your pup any of the foods that are listed in our review, you can have confidence knowing that his nutritional needs will be met. You can also have peace of mind knowing that he will live a very happy, healthy, and long life.

Nutrition is essential for the overall health and well-being of a German shepherd. Making sure that you are feeding him the highest quality food is one of the most vital parts of responsible pet parenting.

Sources:

AKC

Dog Time

Vet Street

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