Best Food For German Shepherd to Gain Weight

A common question that a lot of German Shepherd owners ask is what the best food for a German shepherd to gain weight is.

German Shepherds are naturally lean dogs with fast metabolisms. They require a lot of exercise and activity. Their fast metabolism means that they need to be consuming a certain number of calories per day, or they may end up being malnourished.

A healthy German Shepherd might at first seem underweight. A healthy German Shepherd has ribs that can be felt but are not visible, and their belly should be tucked in slightly at the waist.

Top Foods To Bulk Up A German Shepherd

A diet that will bulk up a German Shepherd needs to include high amounts of fat and protein content.

We will now list some products that are recommended as the best food for German Shepherd to gain weight.

Top pick

Top pick

Iams Proactive Health High Protein Adult Dog Food

The website states that this dry dog food is geared towards very active adult dogs and will keep them healthy throughout their lives. They describe their product as having a blend of high-quality fat and protein.

This product contains several sources of protein like chicken, turkey, and eggs. It contains a fat percentage of 18%, which is high compared to other brands. It is formulated for active adult dogs that require a high amount of proteins and fats.

This dog food also contains essential minerals that provide support for bones and joints.

It can be purchased on several shops online, like the IAMS website or Amazon, to name a few. It is also available at large retailers like Walmart, Petco, etc.


  • It has a high-fat content, which is very important for weight gain
  • Decently priced
  • Supports healthy joints and bones


  • Might not have enough carbohydrates for very active dogs

Runner Up

Blue Buffalo Wilderness Wild Mountain Recipe

The Blue Buffalo website states that this product is modeled after the diets of wolves and contains no chicken meat. It instead contains red meat that is supposed to be more nutritionally enriching.

Blue Buffalo is a premium brand that is not very affordable but has great quality. This product contains no fillers but instead gets its carbs from vegetables like potatoes and peas. Their products are 100% natural and provide more nourishment per serving compared to other brands.

It also contains small pellets known as "LifeSource Bits." These pellets contain a blend of antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals that provide extra nutrients.

It can be purchased on their website or other online retailers like Amazon. It is also available in most retail stores like Target, PetCo, PetSmart, etc.


  • Has red meat as the protein source
  • Contains no fillers
  • Is 100% Natural
  • The high amount of protein (30%)
  • Contains LifeSource Bits


  • Higher price point
  • Does not have a very high-fat percentage (15%)

Another option

Victor Classic-Hi-Pro Plus Dry Dog Food

Their website states that this dog food is nutrient-dense and made with high-quality beef, chicken, pork, and fish meals. It is great for sporting dogs or dogs that need high levels of protein. They also claim that it has superior digestibility and supports the dogs’ immune and digestive system.

This product is great for weight gain as it has 30% protein and 20% of fat. They have also incorporated many nutritional additives like amino acids and selenium yeast. Their products have also gotten high ratings from Dog Food Advisor.

It can be purchased on their website or other online stores like Amazon. It is also available in stores like Walmart.


  • High protein and fat content
  • Contains amino and omega acids
  • Contains selenium yeast
  • Has a high amount of vitamin E


  • Very hard texture
  • Some review did claim that it made their dog sick and vomit

What To Feed A German Shepherd To Have It Gain Weight

Here we will talk about the key factors of a diet that will make your dog gain weight. The number of calories required is a range and depends on the age, size, and activity level of your dog.

Number Of Meals Per Day

You may not be feeding your dog enough times per day. Adult dogs need 3-4 servings of food every day. If you are trying to incorporate more meals for your dog, remember to space them out so that they eat all of it!

Good German Shepherd Diet For Weight Gain

For an underweight dog, you should switch to a high-fat, high-protein diet. Adult dogs should get 20 to 25% of their daily calories from protein, 25-50% from fats, and the rest from carbohydrates.

Protein should be supplemented with fats and carbohydrates for your dog to gain weight. High protein levels are important as you want your dog to gain weight but still be healthy and form muscle.

If you are buying packaged food, make sure that it is not full of fillers. Fillers like corn and wheat are not easy to digest, and many breeds like German Shepherds are allergic to them. They also will not help your dog gain weight.

Feed them homemade meals. Fresh meats, fish, and vegetables and rice can make great healthy meals for German Shepherds and help them gain weight and keep their digestive system in check. Keep in mind that this does not mean you feed them your leftovers or highly processed foods.

Frequently Asked Questions

We will now answer some commonly asked questions about German Shepherds and their weight.

What is the best food for the German Shepherd puppy to gain weight?

German Shepherd puppies are naturally lanky, and people often fret when there is no reason to. If you suspect your puppy is underweight, get them checked out by a veterinarian.

A puppy should be eating around 500 calories per day of nutrient-rich food.

Do not just go for the food with the highest number of calories. A lot of packaged foods contain large amounts of fillers, which may be harder to digest and not help healthy weight gain.

There is dog kibble specially formulated for German Shepherd puppies. This special kibble will not upset their sensitive stomachs.

Why Is My German Shepherd Skinny?

A visit to the veterinarian will tell you if your dog needs to gain weight.

It could be because they are not being fed enough calories for their activity level. They might be eating the correct amount of food, but the wrong diet. It is also possible that an infection, disease, or injury might be hampering their eating.

Your vet can also advise you on a healthy German shepherd diet and conduct weight check-ins.

Concluding Thoughts

While German Shepherd adults and puppies are naturally lankier compared to other dog breeds, you must look out for signs of malnourishment or disease.

If you feed your dog consistent meals packed with nutrients, they should be on their way to gaining healthy weight in no time.

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