Our Top 3 Picks
Finding the right food for your dog can be a confusing process. All dogs require a specific type of dog food since some breeds are small while others are large.
If you get the cheap generic brand of dog food, it might help your wallet but it’s not the greatest thing for your dog’s health. So, you are probably asking, what is the best food to feed my German Shepherd?
We want to help you choose the best dog food for your German Shepherd. Since there are all kinds of dog food brands that offer cheap fillers which don’t provide real nutrition for your dog, it’s important to keep an eye out and learn exactly what your pet needs. To complicate matters further, if you got your German Shepherd as a puppy, they will require food specifically tailored to the increased nutritional needs of puppies.
German shepherds are obviously much larger than most breeds of dog, which means they need the right amount of nutrients and animal protein in their dog foods to grow healthy and strong. As large dog breeds also often suffer from joint issues and hip dysplasia later in their lives, the best dog food for German Shepherds should contain supplements to help prevent this. When feeding large breed dogs, look for high-quality dog foods containing omega fatty acids. Chicken meal, lamb meal, and fish meal also contain a good amount of glucosamine and chondroitin for joint care. You also need to take care to avoid foods high in fat, as these can contribute to joint issues.
We’ve researched dog food companies all over the internet to find out exactly what’s best for your canine companion. Read on below to find out the best dog foods for German Shepherds!
- Certified content. This article has been fact-checked and verified by our veterinary advisor.
Approved By: Dr. Sara Ochoa, DVM
Notes from our DVM, Sara Ochoa:
“These are the foods I recommend to most of my German Shepherd owners. All large breed puppies need large breed puppy food as [these puppy food options] have the nutrients to support their fast-growing bones.”
View The Best Dog Food For German Shepherds Below
1. Wild Earth Dog Food
This company offers an extremely high-quality product which is kind to your wallet, your dogs and the earth.
You’ll find no meat by-products or inferior products like corn gluten meal here, only ingredients specially selected for their high content of vitamins and minerals.
What’s more, our choice of the best food is delivered straight to your door. It really couldn’t be more convenient.
Key Benefit: Mixed Protein Sources:
Wild Earth only uses the very best, sustainable ingredients to ensure that your dog gets all of the tailored nutrition they need.
They understand that dogs are omnivores and so include plenty of high-quality fruits and vegetables alongside specially selected meats to ensure a high protein content which is achieved in a sustainable way.
+ Developed by veterinarians for the best dog nutrition content.
+ Ecologically sustainable without compromising on protein content.
+ Delivered straight to your door.
+ 100% money-back guarantee.
Why We Like It – Our choice of best dog food for German Shepherd owners is an all-round ideal meal for your pet. The special blend of fruits and vegetables work alongside ethically-sourced meat to ensure a high protein content. These dog foods are convenient, environmentally friendly and packed full of health benefits.
Related: Wild Earth Dog Food Review
2. ROYAL CANIN BREED HEALTH NUTRITION German Shepherd Adult
German Shepherds have a lot of specific needs involved in their digestive systems. Luckily, the experts at Royal Canin use a perfect blend of high-quality ingredients to meet these needs and help your German shepherd grow to its fullest potential!
The main ingredients in this nutrient-packed Royal Canin Giant dry dog food are chicken, pork and brown rice. These three high protein ingredients are excellent for the muscle growth and cognitive development that’s necessary throughout the life of your German Shepherd.
Keeping your dog’s health in mind is key when choosing the best food for your dog, which is why Royal Canin is such an excellent brand.
Key Benefit: Supports Healthy Growth
This dry dog food also helps support your German Shepherd’s joints and muscle growth. Joint pain and disorders are very common in large and giant breeds of dogs, which is why it’s always important to focus on aiding those areas.
If you start while they’re young, the right dog food can prevent all kinds of joint issues that might develop when they’re older.
Pssst! We’ve also reviewed the top dog foods for Huskies!
+ Animal proteins in the chicken and pork are excellent for muscle and brain growth.
+ Perfect for large breed dogs.
+ Supports muscle and joint health, helping prevent problems like hip dysplasia.
+ Avoids filler ingredients commonly found in inferior dog food.
Why We Liked It – As far as protein-packed dog foods go, there are not many competitors when it comes to choosing a high-quality food for German Shepherds and other large breed dogs.
Royal Canin is among the best foods to choose for a happy and healthy adult German Shepherd!
3. Royal Canin Breed Health Nutrition German Shepherd Puppy
Royal Canin makes a double placement on this list with another perfect blend, but this time with dry food for German Shepherd puppies. While German Shepherds always need special care for their unique sensitivities, German Shepherd puppies (as with all large breed puppies) need extra nutrition since they’re constantly growing.
This special blend of puppy food is a great choice for German Shepherd puppies to promote healthy growth and happy living.
Healthy ingredients like brown rice, chicken, and fish oil in this dry food help give your German Shepherd puppy the animal protein and nutrition it needs to grow up strong.
The presence of glucosamine and chondroitin look after the joints as your puppy graduates to an adult German Shepherd. This fiber-rich puppy food also aids the digestion process, which helps to maintain a regular bathroom schedule in German Shepherd puppies.
Fish oil in this dry food also ensures your German Shepherd puppy maintains a healthy heart. It’s an amazing benefit for your energetic puppy!
Key Benefit: Immune System Support
Exclusive blends of antioxidants in this German Shepherd puppy food are excellent for the immune system. They also help to promote the healthy sleep, bone development and digestion needed by a large breed puppy.
+ Excellent for cognitive growth in German Shepherd puppies.
+ Contains brown rice and other great sources of fiber to aid the digestive system.
+ Contains fish oil, which is great for a healthy heart and shiny coat
Why We Liked It – Finding the right food for German Shepherd puppies can be a daunting process. The amount of growth ahead of your puppy requires high animal protein content and specific nutrients! Royal Canin puppy food provides everything your furry friend requires for their development.
If you are looking for the best food to feed your German Shepherd puppy, look no further than Royal Canin.
4. Iams PROACTIVE HEALTH Large Breed Adult
Iams is one of the most well-known and trusted brands in the dog food industry. They also sell a dry food specifically tailored for your adult German Shepherd. This dry dog food is a fantastic all-natural choice to help your dogs stay healthy and strong for their whole lives.
Don’t trust those filler-packed, cheap alternatives. Your adult German Shepherd deserves the tailored nutrition contained in this dry dog food packed with animal proteins.
This dry dog food contains chicken, dried eggs and flaxseed. Large breed dogs rely on high protein compositions like this to nourish their characteristic bulk.
Key Benefit: Longer, Healthier Living
It’s common knowledge that large breed dogs usually have shorter lifespans than smaller breeds. Unfortunately, this is no different for German Shepherds.
However, there are lots of things that can be done to maximize the lifespan of large breed dogs. All the heart-healthy ingredients in this dry dog food are perfect for guiding your large breed friend into seniority. Chicken meal contains compounds which help to protect joints and keep your dog sprightly right into old age.
+ Great for long-living German shepherds.
+ First ingredient is chicken, an excellent source of pure protein.
+ Perfect blend for coat health.
Why We Liked It – Iams German Shepherd is one of the best food options for increasing the life span and overall health of a German shepherd. With a shiny coat and a healthy heart, your dog will continue to be your best friend for longer than ever!
5. EUKANUBA Breed Specific Adult Dry Dog Food
If you’re looking for a great German Shepherd specific dog food, Eukanuba has you covered. Their blend of omega fatty acids help to keep your dog’s coat shiny and their skin soft. Their formula is also specially developed to build strong, lean muscle while burning fat.
This Eukanuba Breed Specific blend of adult German Shepherd dog food uses chicken and fish for animal proteins, supplemented by brown rice, beets and other healthy ingredients to make the ultimate meal for your German shepherd.
These ingredients are perfect to promote healthy bones and joint health since many larger breeds are prone to hip dysplasia and other joint-related illnesses.
Key Benefit: Good for Dental Health
Unlike many other brands of dog food, Eukanuba has special ingredients that promote dental health. They use a special ‘dental defense system’ which helps to both prevent and remove tartar build-up on your German Shepherd’s teeth.
We often assume that dogs don’t have to main their teeth, but they’re still very susceptible to tooth rot and serious aches in their mouths. For comprehensive dental care, supplement this food with dental chews.
+ Dental benefits, unlike many other dog food blends.
+ Specifically designed for German Shepherds.
+ Omega-6 fatty acids maintain a healthy coat.
+ Excellent for joint development to prevent issues later in your dog’s life.
Why We Liked It – Eukanuba’s dog food blend provides all of the essential joint support and nutrients your German Shepherd needs, with the addition of keeping their mouth fresh and clean. This is good news for those households plagued by the issue of smelly dog breath!
Related Review: Keep Your German Shepherd Happy
6. Blue Wilderness Blue Buffalo High Protein Grain Free
Blue is one of the most well-known dog food brands, which is why the fact that it’s so healthy for your German Shepherd should come as no surprise.
Blue Buffalo Wilderness boasts a staggering amount of grain-free, protein-rich options. Their selection includes chicken, turkey, quail, duck, salmon, halibut, trout (for all your fish meal needs), rabbit, bison and venison flavors packed with real meat and high-quality protein. Their foods also cater to specific breed sizes and offer both puppy and adult varieties. This amount of choice is also great news for owners of fussy puppies or dogs with specific food allergies.
Instead of risking your dog’s diet on a cheaper brand that might not be healthy, Blue Buffalo Wilderness gives you the comfort of knowing that your dog’s diet will care for all of their needs.
Blue Wilderness Taste Of The Wild uses high-protein ingredients such as chicken, fish, duck and many more to ensure your dog gets the right nutrients for muscle growth.
A dog shouldn’t rely on just bland carbohydrates to support muscle growth. These grain-free recipes ensure that your dog’s food is all thriller, no filler.
Delicious ingredients make your dog want to come back for more Blue Wilderness Blue Buffalo high protein dog food, which means coaxing your dog into a healthy mealtime will be a thing of the past!
Key Benefit: No Fillers
One of the many reasons that Blue is so well-known is due to their grain-free composition which lacks low protein fillers.
This company uses only high-quality, natural ingredients to give your German Shepherd a healthy, protein-rich diet. Your dog can enjoy the countless nutritional benefits, while you enjoy peace of mind.
+ Trusted brand in the dog food industry.
+ High-quality protein is always the first ingredient.
+ Grain-free and free from inferior products like chicken by-product meal.
+ Specifically formulated to aid with joint support for larger breeds.
Why We Liked It – It’s hard not to love a blend of German Shepherd dog food that uses high-quality protein and other delicious ingredients to keep your canine companion happy and healthy.
Blue Wilderness Blue Buffalo high protein dog food does an excellent job at mimicking the diet your dog would have in the wild. This is why they called themselves Blue Wilderness!
Related Review: Keep Your German Shepherd Happy
7. ROYAL CANIN Giant HEALTH NUTRITION MAXI
Racking up their third spot on this list, Royal Canin has another great dog food for your German Shepherd. It’s easy to digest and specifically designed to taste amazing to your dog, which makes them love their mealtimes even more!
Their recipe also boasts a high amount of antioxidants and amino acids. These help to prevent the decay of your dog’s cells and support your dog’s circulatory system, respectively.
Chicken and brown rice give this dog food a great taste, which will keep them coming back to their bowl with glee every day. The healthy hydrated chicken composition also ensures your furry friend can eat with gusto without you having to worry about fat content.
Their exclusive blend of amino acids and antioxidants helps to protect your pup from the wear and tear involved in life as a large breed dog.
Key Benefit: Unique Shape:
Royal Canin has also carried out extensive testing to develop the perfect kibble shape for your German Shepherd.
These perfectly circular kibbles are easy for your dog to chew and simple to digest. Instead of getting stuck in their teeth and throat, these circular pellets go down with ease.
+ Unique customized shape, tailored for ease of digestion and chewing.
+ Classic recipe of chicken and brown rice for a delicious taste.
+ Exclusive amino acid blend fights cell decay caused by free radicals.
Why We Liked It – Dogs can have some serious problems when failing to digest their foods. German Shepherds are notoriously well known for their digestive problems, so finding a dog food brand to accommodate this is ideal.
8. Blue Buffalo Life Protection Formula Natural
Blue’s second blend on this list is specifically designed for the immune system and digestive support, making it perfect for larger breeds. German Shepherds are prone to issues in both of these areas, especially in their later years.
As with the Blue product covered above, this food comes in a huge range of flavors and tailored formulas. There is something for every puppy, adult dog and senior dog.
Instead of feeding your dog fillers until it’s too late, try supporting their growth with this immune-boosting canine formula. With blends formulated specifically for puppies, you can ensure your dog gets tailored nutrition from the very beginning.
Once again, a staggering amount of variety is the order of the day with Blue. Their Life Protection Formula offers a whole host of options for your dog’s mealtime.
You can choose from many different protein-packed ingredients such as chicken, fish, and lamb to ensure your German Shepherd grows up strong and healthy. There is even variety in the second ingredient when shopping for puppies, allowing you to choose whether you want brown rice or oatmeal to accompany the proteins.
Key Benefit: Unique Immune System Support
Blue uses what they call “Life Source Bits” to help lengthen your dog’s lifespan. These bits are packed with antioxidants, vitamins and minerals that all help your German Shepherd to ward off illnesses and maintain healthy joints and muscles.
+ Unique Life Source Bits help your German Shepherd live a longer, healthier life.
+ High-quality protein as a first ingredient, with a choice of brown rice or oatmeal for puppies.
+ Huge amount of choice for your puppy, adult or senior dog.
+ Packed with healthy antioxidants, vitamins and minerals.
Why We Liked It – Blue’s “Life Source Bits” was specifically designed and chosen by vets who love dogs just as much as we do. With your German Shepherd’s wellbeing in mind, they have designed the perfect blend of dog food!
9. Nutro WHOLESOME ESSENTIALS
If you’re looking for an all-natural alternative food source for your dog, check out Nutro Ultra Whole Essentials.
This special blend of dog food uses farm-raised chicken meal to boost healthy muscle growth. This also helps to avoid the added risk of illnesses which can sometimes be an issue with non-farm-raised foods.
Chicken, chicken meal, peas, potatoes, and many other natural ingredients make up this ultra-healthy blend of Nutro Ultra dog food that’s ideal for raising a robust German shepherd.
Chicken meal contains a large amount of glucosamine and chondroitin which are perfect for maintaining your dog’s joints.
Key Benefit: Delicious Taste
Many of the most nutritious dog foods compromise their taste in order to provide your dog with the complete and balanced set of nutrients it needs.
However, Nutro Wholesome Essentials composition of chicken meal, peas and potatoes does it all while retaining those flavors that keep dogs coming back to their food bowls with glee.
+ All-natural ingredients.
+ Delicious blend for your German Shepherd.
+ No added fillers.
+ High chicken meal content helps to protect joints.
Why We Liked It – With all of the flavor and all of the health benefits, it’s hard to find anything to dislike about Nutro Wholesome Essentials dry food.
10. EUKANUBA Adult
Eukanuba achieves their second placement on this list with another great blend of adult dog food which focuses on heart health and a shiny coat. German Shepherds exert all kinds of heart-pumping energy which means they require much more upkeep than those smaller breeds.
Luckily, this blend helps lubricate your dog’s heart valves to keep them playing fetch for longer!
Nutritious ingredients like chicken and dried beet pulp make up this heart-healthy blend.
This food is packed with omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids which help your German Shepherd to retain their puppy-like vigor and energy well into their adult life.
Key Benefit: Perfect for Larger Breeds
Larger dog breeds need special attention for their digestive systems, as they’re genetically prone to complications. A diet high in fiber works wonders to keep your dog’s bathroom breaks on schedule and to maintain their digestive health in the long term.
+ High-fiber formula to help aid your dog’s digestive tract.
+ Packed with protein to help improve muscle growth.
+ Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids help regulate the heart.
Why We Liked It – German Shepherds need special food for their sensitive stomachs. The high fiber content in this blend of dog food is one of the best things you can feed your German Shepherd to keep them free of digestive issues.
11. Wellness Core® Natural Grain Free
Grains in a dog’s diet can cause serious digestive problems, as well as stomach aches and other avoidable illnesses. Since German Shepherds have a genetic predisposition to digestive problems, it’s a good idea to avoid grains as much as possible.
Wellness Core has made a grain-free blend, which is exactly what your dog needs to avoid such issues.
Wellness Core® Natural Grain Free uses turkey and chicken as its main protein sources, which is great since they’re both naturally low in fat. Alongside this food’s grain-free composition, you can be sure that you’re feeding your dog the best quality ingredients.
Key Benefit: Grain-Free
Although we have already touched on this, the fact that there are no grains in this blend is wonderful and bears repeating.
Most cheap dog food brands will use grains as a filler, disregarding your dog’s overall well-being to create a more profitable food. Too many grains in your dog’s diet can lead to them becoming fat, which can cause or complicate heart and joint problems.
+ High in low-fat protein.
+ Focus on healthy fat types to promote brain growth.
Why We Liked It – Avoiding unhealthy grains and fillers is an excellent way to keep your dog healthy and increase their overall lifespan. Not to mention it tastes better to them!
Bonus Buy: Healthy Breeds Dog Daily Multi-Vitamin
Sometimes we like to add a “Bonus Buy” if there’s something too good to pass up! We wanted to show you an amazing treat that’s perfect for your German Shepherd’s diet. Healthy Breeds Soft Chew treats are a great way to reward your dog for doing tricks, training well, or simply being a good boy or girl!
These unique little treats come in many different varieties so you can choose exactly what you want for your dog breed. They’re perfect for your dog’s heart health and tasty too!
We would recommend using them more as a dietary supplement than treats in order to minimize the risk of your furry friend becoming fat.
Luckily, although they provide a host of heart health benefits – they’re just as delicious as treats!
This means your dog won’t shy away from staying healthy. Sometimes, convincing your dog to try a new pet food can be difficult.
+ Delicious flavor.
+ Great for a healthy heart.
+ Helps regulate the digestive system.
+ Perfect little daily supplements.
Why We Liked It – Finding a daily supplement which suits the specific requirements of your German Shepherd can be difficult at times. Luckily these little hearts have everything your German Shepherd needs and nothing they don’t!
Dog Food For German Shepherds Buyers Guide
Since there are so many different dog food choices and varieties to choose from, we decided to narrow it down to just 10 for this list. However, that is still a lot of choice, especially when presented with such high-quality options!
That’s why we’ve created this helpful guide to inform your selection process even further.
Best Dog Food for German Shepherds with Sensitive Stomachs?
All dogs can have unique issues, regardless of their breed. If your German shepherd is having stomach issues, it’s likely due to digestive problems.
EUKANUBA Adult Dry Dog Food is without a doubt the best selection for dogs with digestive issues since it’s so high in fiber. A high fiber diet will get your German Shepherd back to optimal health and happiness in no time!
Best Dog Food for German Shepherds with Skin Allergies?
Food allergies in dogs can lead to a dull or shedding coat. Not only does this require a lot of clean up, but it also causes actual physical pain and irritation for your dog.
Iams PROACTIVE HEALTH Large Breed Adult Dry Dog Food contains flaxseed and dried eggs, which are both well known for helping keep a dog’s skin and coat shining.
Best Dry Food for German Shepherd?
Choosing the best dry food for your German shepherd is not the easiest task. However, if we had to choose it would be Blue Buffalo Life Protection Formula Natural Adult Dry Dog Food. The special healthy bits in this blend work to increase your dog’s lifespan. They are also incredibly easy to digest!
Unless your German Shepherd is an especially fussy eater, you should always try to choose dry dog food over wet food. This is because a dog’s teeth glide through wet food, as opposed to dry food which helps to clean the surface of your dog’s teeth and maintain optimum oral hygiene.
Alternatively, if your furry friend demands wet food, you can always supplement this with dental chews. This means your adult dog or puppy will get all the dental benefits of dry food with the great taste and texture of wet food.
What is the Best Dog Food for German Shepherd Puppies?
As with all puppies, German Shepherd puppies require specific puppy food to keep them growing healthily.
The best food for German Shepherd puppies is Royal Canin Breed Health Nutrition German Shepherd Puppy Food. The high amount of protein and healthy fat content promotes strong muscle growth, joint protection and cognitive development.
Why settle for generic large breed puppy blends when Royal Canin have developed the optimum formula to help your German Shepherd puppy graduate to adulthood in the most healthy way possible?
This will keep your German Shepherd puppy attentive and strong throughout his or her lifetime!
Best Cheap Dog Food for German Shepherd?
One of the best budget dog foods for German Shepherds is Iams ProActive Health Adult Breed Specific.
This blend allows you to select exactly what’s in your dog’s diet at an incredibly affordable price on Amazon.
Instead of spending up to $100.00 on other German Shepherd dog food brands, Iams gives you a cheaper alternative without compromising the health benefits of those more expensive products.
Choosing the right dog food for any dog is very difficult. Things can become even more overwhelming when your dog has specific needs, such as a low-fat diet or protein-rich puppy food.
We made it our mission to find everything you need to keep your German Shepherd healthy.
The biggest problem facing most pet owners is choosing the right type of food. Especially with large breed dogs, you need to ensure the presence of joint-friendly ingredients such as fish meal, lamb meal or chicken meal which contain glucosamine and chondroitin.
It should be clear by now that you should be striving to avoid cheap, filler-packed foods. However, we also understand that not everyone has the budget to buy top-shelf foods for their dogs or puppies.
Combining considerations about both price and healthiness, we believe these 10 options are truly the best dog foods for German Shepherds.
We have tried to save you endless hours spent researching in the hope that you can spend that time with your dog instead!
As you likely know by this point, German Shepherds are prone to joint problems due to their larger size. You can help to keep their bones and joints healthy by exercising them regularly.
Swimming is an option which is often overlooked as a great way to keep your large breed dog happy and strong for life!
Did You Know?
German Shepherds get their name from the massive herds of sheep that they were bred to guide and protect in Germany.
They were designed to be the ultimate protector, with the endurance to keep up with the flock and the strength to defend it! Read more about their history here.
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