German Shepherd’s Weight and Growth Chart: Guide 2020

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How long does a German Shepherd grow? This question is asked by many shepherd dog owners.

In this article we have explained in detail how long it takes until a German Shepherd dog has reached its maximum size.

In this article you will find:

  • German shepherd growth chart
  • German shepherd growth stages
  • German shepherd weight chart
  • And many more…

A German Shepherd dog usually grows 14 to 18 months and is thus fully grown.

A male German Shepherd dog reaches a size up to 65 cm / 26 inches with a weight of up to 40 kg / 88 lbs.

A German shepherd dog female reaches a size of up to 60 cm / 24 inches at a weight of 32 kg / 71 lbs.

This is how fast a German Shepherd dog grows

A sheepdog reaches over 90% of its final size after about 7 months. After about 12 months the weight is at 90% of its final weight.

In the first 7 months a sheepdog puppy grows fastest.

During this time the larger growth spurts also take place.

The legs often grow faster than the rest of the body and the dog then usually looks disproportionate.

During the growth spurts a dog is tired more quickly and less resilient.

As a rule of thumb one can say the following: After 6 months a sheepdog should have reached 60% of its final weight.

With 6 to 7 months the tooth change should be completed.

With 7 to 12 months, a sheepdog enters the pauperty.

From the 16th month he is as good as full-grown. A slight growth beyond that is nothing unusual.

With 2 years a German Shepherd should have reached his final size.

The following diagram shows the increase in size and weight for a German Shepherd dog in the first 24 months.

As you can see, the dog is growing fast. The weight gain is slower.

Diagram: German Shepherd growth in the first 24 months

To sum up: At the age of two years a German Shepherd should have reached his final height and weight. From the 1st to 3rd year of life the stature of the German Shepherd changes.

The dog becomes somewhat broader and more muscular.

The head shape, chest and shoulders change. The coat also develops completely during this time.

The growth is thus completely finished with approx. 3 years.

German shepherd dog size chart

Here we have compared the back length, shoulder height (height at withers), neck circumference and weight of a full-grown German Shepherd male and a female.

German Shepherd’s Weight and Growth
Picture: Dimensions of a German shepherd dog

Size chart male German Shepherd

A full-grown shepherd dog male should have the following measurements:

min.max.
Weight30 kg / 66 lbs.40 kg / 88 lbs
Shoulder height60 cm / 23 inches65 cm / 25 inches
Neck circumference50 cm / 20 inches70 cm / 28 inches
Back length65 cm / 25 inches75 cm / 30 inches

Size chart Female German Shepherd

An adult german shepherd dog female should have the following measurements:

min.max.
Weight22 kg / 49 lbs.32kg / 71 lbs
Shoulder height55 cm / 22 inches60 cm / 24 inches
Neck circumference45 cm / 18 inches65 cm / 26 inches
Back length60 cm / 24 inches70 cm / 28 inches

Weight Gain in the first months of a German Shepherd

Here you can see the weight gain of a sheepdog in the first 24 months.

These values are interpolated and may vary. They should be used for orientation.

Weight Gain German Shepherd Dog Male

  • at the age of 3 months the weight should be between 13 kg and 15 kg / 29 lbs. and 33 lbs.
  • at 6 months of age, the weight should be between 20 kg and 27 kg / 44 lbs. and 60 lbs.
  • with 1 year the weight should be between 29 and 39 kg / 64 lbs. and 86 lbs.
  • The adult weight should be between 30 kg and 40 kg / 66 lbs. and 88 lbs.
Diagram: Weight of a sheepdog male in the first 24 months

Growth Table German Shepherd Dog Male

Here the weight of a German Shepherd dog male is shown in a table:

Agemin.Max.
3 months13 kg / 29 lbs.15 kg / 33 lbs.
4 months15 kg / 33 lbs.20 kg / 44 lbs.
5 months18 kg / 40 lbs.23 kg / 51 lbs.
6 months20 kg / 44 lbs.27 kg / 60 lbs.
7 month23 kg / 51 lbs.30 kg / 66 lbs.
8 months25 kg / 55 lbs.32 kg / 70 lbs.
9 months27 kg / 60 lbs.35 kg / 77 lbs.
10 months28 kg / 62 lbs.37 kg / 82 lbs.
11 months28 kg / 62 lbs.38 kg / 84 lbs.
12 months29 kg / 64 lbs.39 kg / 86 lbs.
Mature30 kg / 66 lbs.40 kg / 88 lbs.

Weight German shepherd Female

  • at 3 months of age, the weight should be between 8 kg and 12 kg / 18 lbs. and 26 lbs.
  • at 6 months of age, the weight should be between 15 kg and 22 kg / 33 lbs. and 49 lbs.
  • with 1 year the weight should be between 21 and 31 kg / 46 lbs. and 68 lbs.
  • The adult weight should be between 22 kg and 32 kg / 49 lbs. and 71 lbs.
Chart: weight of a German shepherd Female in the first 24 months

Growth table German shepherd dog Female

Here the weight of a shepherd dog female is shown in a table:

Agemin.Max.
3 months8 kg / 18 lbs.12 kg / 26 lbs.
4 months11 kg / 24 lbs.15 kg / 33 lbs.
5 months13 kg / 29 lbs.18 kg / 40 lbs.
6 months15 kg / 33 lbs.22 kg / 49 lbs.
7 month17 kg / 37 lbs.24 kg / 53 lbs.
8 months18 kg / 40 lbs.26 kg / 57 lbs.
9 months19 kg / 42 lbs.28 kg / 62 lbs.
10 months20 kg / 44 lbs.29 kg / 64 lbs.
11 months21 kg / 46 lbs.31 kg / 68 lbs.
12 months22 kg / 48 lbs.32 kg / 71 lbs.
Mature22 kg / 48 lbs.32 kg / 71 lbs.

Daily weight gain of a German Shepherd

This diagram shows the daily weight gain of a sheepdog puppy.

After 3 months the maximum is reached. Here a German shepherd dog puppy gains about 160 grams / per day or 5.64 oz / per day.

Diagram: Daily weight gain of a German shepherd dog

The comparison shows the daily weight gain of a Shiba Inu (red line). Here more about Shiba Inu growth.

Nutrition during the growth phase

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It is advised by many breeders and veterinarians to avoid a too fast growth.

The German Shepherd, as well as other large breeds of dogs, tends to suffer from joint problems and skeletal development disorders if they grow too fast.

Therefore, especially in the first 6 months of life, the dog should not be overfed.

Number of meals for German Shepherd

The following number of meals is recommended:

  • 2 to 3 months: 4 meals daily
  • 3 to 6 months: 3 meals daily
  • from 7 months: 2 meals daily

optionally you can start with one meal a day from one year on

Chuck

A German shepherd dog needs special puppy or young dog food in the growth phase.

When buying, you should make sure that the packaging says Junior and not Adult.

There is now very good dog food on the market.

Tip: The recommended amount of food for each month of life is printed on the back of the packaging.

Important: If you are unsure about the amount of food and its composition (wet/dry food), you should ask the breeder or veterinarian.

German Shepherd’s Weight and Growth

An adult dog needs an average of 2% of its body weight in food every day.

For a 30 kg shepherd dog this is about 600 grams per day.

You should constantly check the weight of your sheepdog and take care that the dog does not become too fat.

If you feel the ribs without having to look for them, the dog has the ideal weight.

If you feel the ribs too strongly, the dog may be underweight.

To avoid over- or underfeeding, you should check the correct amount of food with a scale.

Possible reasons for a small & too slow growth of German Shepherd Dog

There are many reasons why the growth of a sheepdog is not in the norm. Here we have counted a few:

  1. It may be a mongrel: It doesn’t have to be, but we shouldn’t rule it out.
  2. Little parents or even grandparents: There are upper and lower limits to height. If both parents are small, it is likely that the puppies will be small.
  3. Wrong nutrition: During the growth phase, it is important to get the right nutrients. In a German shepherd dog, bones, tendons, ligaments and muscles build up until the age of one year. Here it is best to get advice from the breeder or veterinarian.

Tip: If you have the possibility, you can compare the size with the litter siblings. From this you can draw many conclusions about the size. To be sure whether the dog is in the norm, one should ask the breeder or veterinarian.

Growth in comparison of German Shepherd with other races

How long do other dog breeds grow?

German Shepherd’s Weight and Growth
  • Small dog breeds such as the Chihuahua grow up in about 6 months.
  • Medium sized dog breeds like the Shiba Inu grow to about 9 months.
  • Large dog breeds like the Labrador or the Golden Retriever are fully grown at 14 months.
  • Very big dogs like the St. Bernard are grown up with about 18 months.

In general you can say: A dog is fully grown when a female dog is in heat and the male dog starts to lift his leg.

But it can take a little longer until the final stature is reached. With small dog breeds this happens faster than with large dog breeds.

How does a German Shepherd grow?

In contrast to humans, German Shepherds have only about 1 year time for their growth.

It is therefore very important to avoid rearing and feeding mistakes during this phase, as there is hardly any time left for a correction of the diet or the joint problem.

Skeletal defects, on the other hand, usually handicap a dog throughout its life.

Large German Shepherds breeds grow differently than small dog breeds

Giant breeds are only adult at 14 to 18 months, whereas the small breeds are already 12 months old.

The body size of a dog is genetically predetermined.

It is therefore a fairy tale to believe that a dog becomes particularly large and strong if you feed it generously and with many food additives as a puppy.

He will grow faster and reach his final size earlier, but you are not doing the dog a favour.

The goal of every breeder and owner should be to let his dog reach its full-grown body size in a healthy speed, thus rather slowly.

In addition the German Shepherd is consciously not overfed.

Nevertheless, there is a phase in which the dog grows particularly fast.

Fastest size increase from the 3rd to 6th month of life of a German Shepherd

German Shepherd’s Weight and Growth

The fastest increase in size occurs between the 3rd and 6th month of life.

This phase therefore poses the greatest challenges to the body, but also to correct posture and feeding.

For giant breeds, the following rule of thumb can be observed for the development of body weight: after 6 months, 60% of the final weight should be on the scales.

For smaller breeds it is already a little more, as the above figure also shows.

The mother animal would actually instinctively ensure that the puppy gets the correctly composed and correctly dosed ration.

However, since the puppies are weaned at an early age, breeders and owners take responsibility for food and exercise.

The right amount of food – control with the scale

The ration sizes indicated on the feed bags are always rough recommendations.

The correct amount of food varies from dog to dog and may differ from the recommendations on the food bag.

For growing German Shepherds, however, the indicated ration size should not be exceeded.

Treats, chewing bones etc. which the dog gets additionally, must be included in this daily ration or deducted.

In case of doubt, the dog should be kept rather lean so that its growth does not proceed too fast.

A control with the help of a scale is highly recommended.

The following illustration shows roughly what daily weight increases can be expected based on three different final weights.

For large dogs and giant breeds, it can’t hurt to have the growth curve and daily weight gain of your own dog calculated by an expert to be able to control the weight gain more precisely.

Avoid over- and undersupply

German Shepherd’s Weight and Growth

The commercial feeds available today are all correctly composed.

No additives are needed. For fast growing dogs of large breeds a special puppy food is highly recommended.

This puts the calcium requirement in the right proportion to the energy content of the food.

If food rations are put together yourself, as for example with BARF, it is highly recommended to have them calculated by an expert with regard to ration size and ingredients.

Otherwise the risk of over- or undersupply is too great.

This risk should not be taken, especially in the development phase.

Most significant feeding errors in growth stage of a German Shepherd

The two most important feeding errors in growth are overfeeding and the administration of too much calcium.

Scientific studies show that it is precisely in the phase of rapid growth between the 3rd and 6th month of life that the causes of many growth-related skeletal diseases can be found.

2 to 4 months later, the consequential damage is already apparent: cartilage defects, uneven bone growth, insufficient intake of vitamins or an excess of feed ingredients.

They are first noticed as lameness, bent front legs, joint restrictions or shaky gait in dogs aged 6 to 10 months. Hip joint dysplasia (HD) can thus develop.

The consequences of too much food for a German Shepherd

Overfeeding leads to rapid skeletal development.

The musculature and the circulatory system are then only partially able to meet the animal’s needs for movement and stress.

This results in a disproportion between muscle mass and skeleton.

In addition, the extremely rapid increase in size of bones growing in pairs (such as ulna and radius) can lead to so-called joint stages.

One of these secondary diseases is elbow dysplasia (ED).

The consequences of too much calcium – caution before the 5th month of life of a German Shepherd

German Shepherd’s Weight and Growth

High calcium intake has been scientifically studied in detail.

It has been proven that overdosed calcium leads to bone and cartilage restructuring disorders and corresponding thickening of these tissues.

This makes the nutrition of these layers in the joint critical, leading to tissue destruction and the detachment of cartilage pieces.

This disease is called osteochondrosis.

The absorption of calcium into the body is regulated and limited by vitamin D.

This mechanism only matures after the 5th month of life.

For this reason, high doses of calcium such as bone meal or other special preparations are very harmful if they are given before this time and are absorbed by the body practically unhindered.

(The long-held opinion that high protein intake is harmful has been refuted. On the other hand, too low a protein intake reduces the body’s resistance to infection).

The body weight remains important – even in adult German Shepherds

Until the dog is 18 months old, its weight should be kept at the lower limit in any case.

Of course, it must also be ensured afterwards that the dog does not carry excess weight.

For this purpose the ribs should always be well palpable.

For a weight reduction it is important to know that this takes place to 90% via reduced food and only to 10% via increased activity.

In addition, it would be extremely unfavourable to spend hours on a bicycle with an overweight dog, as this would put a massive strain on his skeleton.

The right measure for exercise for the German Shepherd

German Shepherd’s Weight and Growth

But not only the right nutrition is responsible for the optimal development of a young dog.

The movement, or the strain on joints, muscles etc. must also be adapted to the age of the dog.

It is therefore important to take the dog’s stage of development into account for walks, play times and other activities.

As a general rule, any training or activity (even just walking) should only be increased slowly so as not to overtax the young joint apparatus.

Often the puppies overestimate themselves or don’t even notice that they have enough.

Here it is the owner’s task to find the right measure and to provide for sufficient rest periods.

For endurance hobbies wait for the adult dog

Jogging or cycling should only be done with the adult dog and here too the routes should not overtax the dog and should be increased in small steps.

Long walks should only be expected of the dog when it is fully grown.

Consequential damages are irreversible

It is particularly important for dog owners to understand that the consequential damage caused by feeding mistakes or inappropriate exercise is unfortunately usually irreversible or irreversible.

It is therefore important to pay attention to the points mentioned above during the entire growth phase.

The guide Recommendations for the nutrition and exercise of the growing dog provides further information.

Conclusion: Growth of German Shepherd

In the growth phase of the dog, important decisions are made for his health.

The consequential damage caused by too rapid growth or incorrect nutrition is usually irreversible.

The body size of every dog is genetically predetermined and should be reached as slowly as possible.

The physical strain should be adapted to the dog’s stage of development.

It is worthwhile for the whole dog’s life.

History of German Shepherds

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The ancestors of the German shepherd dog probably lived in Germany already in the 7th century.

The stock haired dogs already had a quite broad field of activity at that time.

A German shepherd dog’s main task was the herding and driving of the flock of sheep, but at the same time it should also guard and protect the shepherd’s belongings.

The history of the German shepherd dog, as we know it today, officially begins only at the end of the 19th century. In 1871, the Prussian court equestrian Max von Stephanitz, who is considered the founder of this breed today, began with the targeted breeding of the versatile dogs.

German Shepherd’s Weight and Growth

Hector von Linksrhein alias Horand von Grafrath

Stephanitz had resounding success with the male “Hektor von Linksrhein”, which he renamed “Horand von Grafrath” after his purchase in 1898.

Horand was the first dog to be entered in the stud book of the newly founded “Verein für Deutsche Schäferhunde” (SV).

Stephanitz put all his breeding efforts on him and on his brother “Lynx von Sparwasser”.

Horand von Grafrath and Lynx von Sparwasser as well as the bitch “Mari von Grafrath” are today considered the ancestors of the German Shepherd.

Most of the German Shepherds go back to their line.

Symbol of “German virtues”

The goal of the breeder von Stephanitz was clearly defined.

He was interested in a versatile working dog, about whose character and working characteristics the breeder had exact ideas.

A German Shepherd dog possessed the virtues courage, loyalty, obedience, endurance and robustness, which made him world famous and in many countries one of the most popular service dog breeds of authorities such as police and military.

At the time of the First and Second World War these characteristics were stylized to “German virtues”.

The German Shepherd Dog became a symbol of National Socialist sentiment.

As a result of anti-German resentment abroad, the British Kennel Club changed the breed name to “Alsatian Wolf Dog” or later simply to “Alsatian Dog” in order to avoid the attribute “German” in the name.

Only in 1977 this change of name was reversed.

Nevertheless, a German Shepherd Dog was not only on the German side, but also on the side of the Allies a much sought-after war dog.

He attained sad fame, however, above all by his employment in concentration camps and as a faithful companion of Adolf Hitler.

Numerous photos of Nazi propaganda show Hitler with his German shepherd dog “Blondi”.

Despite this instrumentalisation and a strong decimation by the Second World War, the breed was able to assert itself after the end of the war and soon became one of the most sought-after utility dog breeds in the world again.

With the “conversion” of many dog breeds to family dogs, the German Shepherd as such also became more and more popular.

German Shepherd Temperament

Hardly any other pedigree dog can be used as versatile as a German Shepherd.

Originally bred as a flock service dog, which was supposed to herd and guard the sheep, the German Shepherd is now used as a service and protection dog by the police, military and customs, as a rescue and therapy dog, as an avalanche search dog and as a guide dog for the blind.

Not only in his home country Germany, but also worldwide the German Shepherd is the leading service dog breed.

German Shepherd’s Weight and Growth

Self-confident, robust and easy to handle

No man or machine can replace the brave, persevering and reliable dog in his work.

His drive, resilience and self assurance are legendary.

Thanks to his high intelligence, his ability to learn and his enormous willingness to work, he takes on new challenges at lightning speed and is therefore suitable for almost any task assigned to him.

In addition, the German Shepherd is very people-oriented.

A German Shepherd dog is always faithful, loyal and reliable to his owner.

Thus it is above all the combination of robustness, work instinct, reliability and ease of handling that makes the German Shepherd so popular and predestines him for a wide variety of applications.

A German Shepherd as a family dog?

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His loyalty and reliability towards people has also made the German Shepherd a popular family dog.

In fact, the four-legged friend – provided he is well-behaved and fully occupied – is a great partner and companion, which is very suitable for living together in a family.

A well socialized German Shepherd dog proves to be very fond of children and well compatible with other pets.

A prerequisite for a life as a family dog, however, is that the active dog is supported physically and mentally.

Dogs with which insufficient attention is paid and whose urge to move and work is not taken into account develop bad habits which are actually foreign to the basically balanced pedigree dog.

They become nervous and over-controllable and are difficult to manage in everyday life.

Physically and mentally busy sheepdogs, on the other hand, are an enrichment for every family: playmate, sports mate and incredibly loyal protector.

German shepherd dog appearance

With a shoulder height between 60 and 65 cm for males and 55 to 60 cm for bitches, the German Shepherd belongs to the medium to large breeds of dogs.

His well proportioned body reflects his life as a working and utility dog.

A German Shepherd Dog is strong and strongly muscled, but always appears athletic and agile.

Any tendency towards sluggishness is rejected.

He possesses an expansive and powerful gait, which testifies to an enormous endurance.

The wedge-shaped head, which is in harmonious proportion to the body, closes with a straight bridge and an always black nose.

He impresses his counterpart not least with a complete scissor bite with 42 teeth.

His upright and forward pointing standing ears as well as his dark and slightly slanting eyes give the sheepdog an always alert and attentive expression.

Coat and colour varieties

German Shepherd’s Weight and Growth

For a long time, the breed standard of the FCI, which is listed under number 166 in the group of herding dogs, only allowed dogs with stocky fur.

The stockhair should be straight and tight and be reinforced by a dense undercoat, which reliably protects the dog from snow, rain and cold.

Only in the year 2008 also the long stick hair type was taken up to the FCI standard.

The long, soft top coat, which does not fit tightly with this type of coat, forms bushy flags and trousers on ears, legs and tail.

The very hairy neck shows a characteristic mane.

The colours of the stock fur or long stock fur are black with brown, yellow or light grey markings, black or wolf grey unicoloured or grey with brown markings.

White German shepherd dogs

Although white German Shepherd puppies are occasionally found in litters, the FCI standard has regarded white as a non-colour since 1933. In 1968 the “Shepherd Dog Club of America”, which is responsible for the standard of the “American Kennel Club”, finally followed suit.

An exception is today only the “Canadian Kennel Club”, which still accepts white shepherd dogs in its stud book. Since 2011, the FCI leads the “White Shepherd Dog” as an independent dog breed under the name “Berger Blanc Suisse” (White Swiss Shepherd).

However, white shepherd puppies may not be mated with Swiss dogs and therefore cannot be registered as such.

Breeding and health of German Shepherds

With the increasing spread of the breed, unfortunately, the number of breed typical diseases also increased.

Thus, the “hip dysplasia” (HD), which can be found in many dog breeds today, was first detected in a German Shepherd dog.

A further joint disease with which the breed has to fight again and again is the “elbow dysplasia” (ED) as well as the degenerative “lumbosacral stenosis” (DLSS) or also called “cauda-equina-syndrome”, which leads to paralysis. In addition, eye diseases and allergies are more common in German Shepherds.

German shepherd dog: high breeding, beauty breeding and performance breeding

German Shepherd’s Weight and Growth

Basically the German Shepherd Dog became bigger and bigger and more massive in the course of his breeding.

Critics complain that this shape no longer has much in common with the original type, which was much lighter, less muscular, but more agile and agile.

The dispute among breeders finally led to the fact that today a distinction is made between two different lines:

On the one hand the high breeding or beauty breeding, with a somewhat more massive build and a sloping back (“hatchback”).

And on the other side the performance breeding, which prefers a lighter type and primarily attaches importance to good service dog qualities.

East German Shepherd

The division of Germany after the Second World War also affected the breeding of the German Shepherd Dog.

Independent breeding lines were formed.

In the West, the typical appearance of the German Shepherd Dog was mainly bred in the style of Kommissar Rex, in the East, one attached importance to the preservation of the service dog characteristics as well as a rather dark colouring.

The East German Shepherd Dog is characterized by an athletic build, strong colours and a strong head.

Characteristic for the “Ossi” is above all the straight back.

He exists in the colours black, deep black brown, grey brown and grey brown cloudy.

In the GDR-breeding a reduction of the hip dysplasia (HD) was also achieved by specific selection.

Unfortunately there are only a few animals of the pure GDR-line available today, so breeding will be difficult in the future.

German Shepherd Dog Prize

Genetic testing of breeding animals is intended to reduce the incidence of hereditary diseases.

In the meantime, a so-called breeding value provides information on the extent to which the puppy is predisposed to a disease.

Dogs that are genetically strongly predisposed are excluded from breeding.

If you are interested in a German Shepherd puppy, you should definitely clarify whether all recommended tests have been carried out and “passed” by the breeder.

The prerequisite for this is that you buy your puppy from a reputable breeder who invests a lot of time and money in the health of his dogs and is willing to give you information.

It goes without saying that a completely healthy and controlled puppy is not available at a bargain price.

However, a purebred German Shepherd dog is still quite low compared to other dog breeds with a puppy price of about 800 Dollar.

Which breeder suits you for a German Shepherd?

German Shepherd’s Weight and Growth

Before you decide on a breeder, however, you should be clear about the purpose for which you want to acquire the German Shepherd.

Most breeders today are specialized in different lines and promote accordingly different characteristics in their breeding animals.

How strong the herding instinct or the urge to work is, for example, depends not least on the breeding.

Find out beforehand whether the breeder runs a beauty breed or a pure performance breed and choose the breeding site that best suits your ideas and requirements.

But even if you want to keep your dog as a pure family dog, you should be aware that even shepherds from pure beauty breeding still have a lot of willingness to learn and an urge to work and are not satisfied with a short walk around the block.

German shepherd dog nutrition

Your dog’s level of activity also determines which food is best suited to your dog.

It is clear that a German Shepherd dog, who is on “work duty” for several hours a day and who moves around a lot, has different energy requirements than a family dog, which usually also has longer periods of rest.

In principle, however, all dogs – regardless of the tasks they perform – must not lack proteins, minerals and vitamins for healthy development.

The dog’s most important source of protein and protein is meat, which should therefore make up about 70 percent of its diet and which you can give your dog in the form of ready-to-eat food, either cooked or raw (keyword “BARFen”).

A vegetable and fruit content of approx. 20-30 percent is recommended to provide your dog with other important vitamins and minerals.

Too much cereals or even sugar is not really part of a healthy dog diet.

You can find more on this topic in our article on the nutrition of the German Shepherd Dog.

Avoid too fast growth for a German Shepherd

Since a German Shepherd, like many large dog breeds, tends to have joint problems, it is important to prevent too rapid growth in the first few months.

A disease of hip joint dysplasia is not only related to the genetic disposition, but also to the way of feeding.

A diet that is too high-energy and too much fat accelerates the puppies’ already rapid growth and can cause joint problems even at an advanced age.

Therefore, have your breeder give you a precise feeding recommendation and make sure that your puppy is fed appropriately.

The breeder will also advise you not to overburden your puppy with too much exercise.

You should avoid climbing stairs completely at first. Natural rest periods support the healthy development of bones and joints.

Caring for a German Shepherd

German Shepherd’s Weight and Growth

A healthy dog’s life includes not only good nutrition and a species-appropriate attitude, but also the appropriate care of your four-legged friend.

The sticky coat of the German shepherd dog proves to be quite easy to care for, although regular combing or brushing is necessary for a healthy coat structure.

Regular deworming and vaccination at the vet is also essential. In addition, you should pay special attention to your dog’s ears, eyes and claws.

These also require cleaning or trimming from time to time and should be checked by the vet if changes occur.

Keeping

If you decide to take a German Shepherd dog into your family, you should of course not only think about his care and nutrition, but also about his keeping.

A German Shepherd is primarily a working dog and as such would like to be “used” within a family.

A sufficient physical and mental activity of your dog is essential for a harmonious living together.

As the owner of a German Shepherd dog, you should not only have the desire and time for long walks and bicycle tours together, but also strive for a species-appropriate occupation of your dog, which is eager to move and learn, in the form of dog sports or training.

German shepherd dog: A sporty family dog

Thanks to his versatility, a German Shepherd dog is to be inspired for almost all dog sports and so agility and dog dance are suitable as well as obedience.

His excellent olfactory performance also predestines him for tracking work or mantrailing.

Recommendable – also for family shepherds – is a training as a rescue dog, protection dog or in performance herding.

Whichever sporting and mental activity you choose, you will quickly notice the positive consequences for your dog and your relationship with each other.

Dogs that train their body and mind sufficiently can not only enjoy rest and recuperation phases better, but are also more receptive to “educational activities”.

If you can devote enough time to training and keeping your shepherd dog fit, you will be rewarded with an extremely friendly, athletic, easy to handle and loyal family dog.

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