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The 10 Best Foods For German Shepherds To Gain Weight

German Shepherds are strong, active dogs that need a good, high-protein diet to stay fit and healthy throughout their lives. If they don't eat right, it can be challenging for these dogs to stay at a healthy weight.

If your German Shepherd needs to gain weight, you need to figure out which commercial foods will help them do so healthily.

BestForPets (bestforpets.org) made a list of reviews of the best foods for German Shepherds to gain weight in a healthy way.


Taste of the Wild Grain-Free High Prairie

Taste of the Wild Prairie grain-free dog food is the best overall food for German Shepherds to eat to gain weight.

The main sources of protein in this formula are roasted bison and venison, which are known to help keep bones healthy and build strong but lean muscles.

There are all the vitamins and minerals that a German Shepherd needs, in the form of real fruits and vegetables, to keep his big body.

There are also different probiotics in the food that help dogs digest their food well and get all the nutrients from it.

In each bite, there are also antioxidants like tomatoes, blueberries, and raspberries, which help make sure your dog doesn’t get sick while trying to gain weight.

Since this formula is made in the U.S., it goes through all the strict rules that are needed to make sure your dog is getting real food. There are no fillers like grains, corn, soy, or ingredients made in a lab.


  • Contains no fillers or grains
  • Contains antioxidants that work well
  • High in fat and protein


  • Not as cheap as some other choices on the market


Blue Buffalo’s formula for life protection

The Blue Buffalo Life Protection formula is made to help big dogs like the German Shepherd stay healthy in all ways.

As a base, it has real meat, whole grains, and fresh vegetables, which your dog needs to gain weight and keep going during a busy day.

This brand is different from others because it has LifeSource Bits, which are a mix of antioxidant-rich nutrients made to fill in nutritional gaps.

There is also glucosamine, which helps improve the health of bones and joints. The formula includes chelated minerals, which make it easy for puppies to digest and absorb the important nutrients they need so that they don’t become deficient.

On the list of ingredients, you will never find corn, soy, wheat, or animal by-products. Blue Buffalo Life Protection Formula is without a doubt the best value food for German Shepherds to eat to gain weight.


  • Real protein is the first ingredient.
  • Includes bits from LifeSource.
  • Glucosamine is used to keep joints healthy.


  • Some dogs don’t like the taste as it is.


The Classic Hi-Pro Plus from VICTOR

This high-quality food, which is made of real beef, sorghum, chicken fat, and fish meal, will help any German Shepherd gain weight and keep it at a healthy level over time.

VICTOR Classic Hi-Pro Plus is full of nutrients and fat, which is important for dogs who need to put on weight.

All of the ingredients in this food come from the United States, and it has different kinds of animal protein to help you gain muscle and weight.

This formula was made by VICTOR with the growing and high-performance dog in mind, so it will satisfy your German Shepherd’s appetite and help them gain weight.

This formula is a great choice for women who have trouble gaining enough weight to take care of their babies while they are pregnant or breastfeeding.


  • High in fat and with a lot of nutrients
  • Perfect for women who are underweight or who are nursing
  • Gives you a steady supply of energy for a busy day


  • Contains only a small amount of healthy carbs
  • Animal meal is added, which is not as good as real meat


Royal Canin Dog Food for German Shepherd Puppies

Royal Canin German Shepherd food was made for German Shepherd puppies up to the age of 15 months. As a puppy’s body grows quickly, the formula has more calcium and phosphorus than adult food.

This is to make sure that bones grow properly and that joints develop well. There is a specially-made antioxidant complex to boost defenses, and a German Shepherd puppy’s immune system gets stronger on its own.

One of the best things about this food is that the kibble comes in small pellets. This makes it easy for puppies with small mouths and teeth that are still growing to chew and digest.

The kibble is crunchy, but not so hard that a small dog’s teeth can’t break through it. But the ingredients include wheat gluten and animal by-products, which are usually thought of as fillers and aren’t needed for good health.


  • Specially made for German Shepherd pups
  • Made to help puppies gain weight and stay healthy.
  • The sizes of kibble are small enough for babies’ teeth to chew on.


  • Fillers like wheat gluten and animal by-products are in it.


Dr. Gary’s Best Breed Holistic German Dog Food is made with natural ingredients.

Dr. Gary’s Best Breed Holistic German food is made with ingredients that are high in nutrients and is only for big dogs like the German Shepherd.

Protein comes from real chicken, fish, and eggs, so your dog can get all the building blocks he or she needs for a strong, muscular body. Also included are mussels from New Zealand, which are thought to make connective tissue stronger.

Every ingredient is easy for your dog to break down, so he or she will get all the nutrients in each bite.

This formula is based on both omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, which help make a coat that is healthy, bright, and shiny. Unlike other commercial foods on the market, this one doesn’t have fresh fruits and vegetables.

Instead, it gets all of its nutrition from yeast and supplements. The kibbles, on the other hand, are big and crunchy, which can be hard for younger German Shepherds to chew.


  • Made especially for big dogs like German Shepherds
  • Omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids are in it.


  • Doesn’t have any fruits or vegetables and uses supplements instead
  • The pieces of kibble may be too big and hard for young puppies.


The Hill’s Science Diet Large Breed Dog Food

Hill’s Science Diet large breed dog food is made with real chicken, whole grains, and high-nutrient ingredients like beet pulp and flaxseed.

It’s full of protein and fat, which can help an underweight German Shepherd gain a healthy amount of weight slowly and safely.

This formula was made by vets based on scientific evidence about nutrition and is meant to be easy to digest.

There are no artificial colors, ingredients, or preservatives in the recipe. The Hill’s Science Diet company owns all of the facilities where food is made in the United States. This helps make sure that every bite meets strict federal guidelines.

But this formula has less protein and fat than others, so as your German Shepherd gains weight, it may need more of this food to meet its daily nutritional needs.


  • Real chicken and whole grains are used.
  • No artificial colors or flavors


  • Has less protein and fat than some of the other choices.
  • The pieces of kibble may be too big for dogs.

FInal Decision

For the best foods for German Shepherds to gain weight, the quality of the nutrients is just as important as the number of calories. Taste of the Wild Prairie Grain-Free Dog Food is our top pick because it is full of good antioxidants and doesn’t have any fillers.

Don’t forget about Blue Buffalo Life Protection Formula, though, because it has a unique mix of LifeSource Bits to help the immune system work well and glucosamine to keep joints healthy. Because it has a lot of fat, BestForPets (bestforpets.org) also recommend VICTOR Classic Hi-Pro Plus. It is made to keep you going all day.

How to Choose the Best Food for Your German Shepherd to Put on Weight?

Find out why the person has lost weight.

Before choosing a food to help your pet gain weight, you need to figure out why your pet has lost weight. Some dogs are picky eaters, while others might have a health problem.

If your dog is picky, you might just have to find a brand that he or she likes and stick with it. A medical problem is more serious and will probably need the help of a vet. In many cases, they will tell you what to eat, and you should do what they say.

Calories in dog food

The best way for your German Shepherd to gain weight is for it to eat more calories. Instead of doubling the amount or giving your pet food more often, we suggest buying brands that use high-quality ingredients and are naturally higher in calories.

Dogs are creatures of habit, and if you feed them more often, it might get confusing when it doesn’t need the extra food.

Wet versus Dry Dog Food

Most of the food on our list is dry kibble, but there is also some wet food. When possible, we recommend dry food because the crunching helps scrape away tartar, which slows the spread of dental disease.

Dry food is easy to store, doesn’t take up much space, and is often cheaper. Most dogs like wet food because it is very rich. It can make your German Shepherd gain weight quickly, but there are problems with that.

Some dogs can get gas, soft stools, or even diarrhea from the high amount of water, and it doesn’t help clean their teeth. In fact, the food can get stuck, which can speed up the progress of any dental disease.

Dog Food Ingredients

If you want your German Shepherd to gain weight, you should choose a brand of dog food that has chicken or turkey as the first ingredient. Probiotics and omega fats are also good, as are real fruits and vegetables.

By adding good bacteria to the gut, probiotics will help your pet’s immune system and digestive systems work better. Omega fats help the brain and eyes grow, and they also make the coat shiny.

Omega fats also help reduce swelling, which can be especially helpful if your dog has arthritis and is getting older.

Some dogs are allergic to them, and they don’t see colors that well anyway. Chemical preservatives like BHA and BHT are also bad for your pet’s health and can cause serious health problems over time.

We usually tell people to stay away from corn, too, because it has mostly empty calories. However, corn products can help your dog gain weight quickly if it needs to. Just don’t forget to get rid of them when your dog is the right size.

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Dr. Deborah Fletcher

Deborah R. Fletcher, DVM, is a skilled veterinarian with more than 15 years of experience dealing with companion and exotic animals. She has experience caring for a variety of animals, including household cats and dogs, reptiles, birds of prey, and even primates. Dr. Fletcher is a valuable part of the BestForPets team, where she contributes to their aim of providing pets and their owners with the finest possible treatment and services.

Veterinarian (DVM) Dr. Deborah Fletcher


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