Best Dry Dog Food For Large Breed Puppies
Kibble is the most popular food format. Its convenient, has a long shelf-life, and is generally a little easier on the wallet. Not every brand offers a puppy formula, no less one designed to specifically meet the needs of a large breed pup. Here is one of our top picks:
- Multi-protein formula: chicken, eggs, and flounder
- 70% meat inclusion, including nutrient-dense organs
- Anti-inflammatory fatty acids and supplements to support joints and mobility
- Optimal calcium to phosphorus ratio for skeletal development
Whats Different About Large Breed Dog Food
It really boils down to calories in relation to your dogs metabolism. Smaller breed dogs typically have a higher metabolic rate and actually burn more calories per pound, explains veterinarian Joel Beth Navratik, DVM, former CEO of MRVL Pet Pharmaceuticals. Large breed puppies need to be calorie-restricted to prevent rapid weight gain. This is especially important because studies show that if a large breed puppy gains too much weight in his first year of life, he will be much more prone to arthritis in his later years. For that reason, large breed dog food is usually crafted with fewer calories. It also tends to boast bigger pieces of kibble that help slow down a dogs eating speed.
How Much To Feed A Large Breed Dog
There is no easy answer to the question: how much to feed a large breed dog? Every dogs caloric needs are unique. The nutrition label on your dogs food provides guidelines for owners, but you may need to tailor them to your dog.
A good way to figure out how much food to feed your dog is to talk to your veterinarian about your dogs weight. Veterinarians judge the weight of a dog based on something called the body condition score. This helps them determine if your dog is at an ideal weight or if he is overweight or underweight, and how you should adjust his food.
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Here’s What To Look For In Puppy Food For Big Dogs
It turns out that not all food for puppies is created equal. If you have a big-breed puppy, then youll want to make sure youre feeding him a large-breed puppy food to make sure hes getting all the necessary nutrients to grow up happy and healthy but which formulas are best?
We reached out to several veterinarians to get a better understanding of why its important to feed your large-breed puppy a specific formula and which ones, in their opinion, are best for your pet. Here are their top picks:
What Is The Best Dry Dog Food For Large Breeds
There is often more variety in adult formulas than in foods for other life stages, so you may find more flavour and style options in this category. While there is no one food that works for every dog, there are plenty of high-quality adult dog foods that might suit your dogs dietary needs.
To help you choose the right one, we put together a few different food options that can help you narrow down the choices based on what you are looking for in a food.
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Nourish As Nature Intended
Your puppy shares his eating anatomy with the gray wolf, which means hes evolved for a diet rich and varied in fresh meat, protein, and fat not highly processed carbohydrates and starches.
RICH IN PROTEINMade with 85% quality animal ingredients, ORIJEN Puppy Large features a richly nourishing and Biologically Appropriate protein level of 38% to closely replicate your puppys natural diet. RICH IN ANIMAL FAT To fuel optimum growth and development, all puppies require nourishing animal fat. Thats why ORIJEN Puppy Large features naturally occurring, non-rendered fat from our fresh poultry, fish, and egg ingredients. DHA AND EPA FROM FRESH FISH Fresh saltwater fish are a Biologically Appropriate source of DHA and EPA, which are essential for your puppys developing immune and nervous systems. DHA and EPA are not available from plant sources, such as flax, coconut, or sunflower. GLUCOSAMINE & CHONDROITIN ORIJENs fresh poultry, meat, and fish provide a rich and natural source of glucosamine and chondroitin, so no synthetic sources are added to ORIJEN foods.
Pdp: Accordion: Detail: Block268 Ingredients
INGREDIENTS: Chicken, Ground Whole Grain Corn, Chicken By-Product Meal, Ground Whole Grain Sorghum, Corn Gluten Meal, Dried Plain Beet Pulp, Natural Flavor, Fish Oil , Dicalcium Phosphate, Salt, Brewers Yeast, Dried Egg Product, Carrot, Potassium Chloride, Caramel Color, Vitamins , Vitamin B12 Supplement, Vitamin A Supplement, Niacin, Riboflavin Supplement , Pyridoxine Hydrochloride , Vitamin D3 Supplement, Folic Acid), Minerals Choline Chloride, Chicken Fat , L-Lysine, Fructooligosaccharides, Calcium Carbonate, Mixed Tocopherols , Rosemary Extract
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About Solid Gold Natural Large Breed Puppy Food
The Wolf Cub Large Breed Puppy Food from Solid Gold combines a number of high-quality ingredientslike bison, oatmeal, and barleyto deliver the nutrition your growing puppy needs.
Plus, this dog food also comes in a large kibble size thats ideal for large breed puppies. If your dog is allergic to potatoes, this potato-free blend could be great for them.
Blue Buffalo Wilderness High Protein Grain Free Food
This dry food for puppies contains chicken as a main ingredient to promote healthy growth and strength.
Benefits Of Large Breed Dog Food
Feeding a large breed-specific food is not a requirement. In fact, many dogs do just fine on all-breed diets, but there are some unique benefits to large-breed formulas that can help prevent common issues in big dogs.
The average size of kibble is perfectly fine for most dogs, but for big doggos, those small pieces are easy to swallow hole. Often, big dogs dont chew their kibble very well, or at all, and this can lead to poor dental health and digestive issues.
Large breed kibbles are much larger and encourage your dog to chew more. Chewing starts to break down the food, making it easier for your dogs body to digest and absorb nutrients.
Dogs who dont chew may throw up food shortly after meals, too. The unchewed kibble will expand in your dogs stomach, and he will start to feel very full. If his meal was large enough, you may see some of that meal again soon.
Higher Protein, Low Fat
Many large breed dog foods offer a slightly higher protein content and a reduced fat content. This offers plenty of nutrients that your big pooch needs to maintain muscle mass and supply long-term energy, but can also help to reduce weight issues.
While big dogs can still have a lot of energy, they dont burn through calories as quickly as smaller breeds. All breed diets may offer too many calories for your big pooch, and this could lead to weight gain as they age.
Hip and Joint Care
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Best Large Breed Puppy Food Canada
If you are all about supporting local, then finding a Canadian-made dog food might be at the top of your list. To get you started, here are some of our favourite large breed puppy foods that are made right here in the great white north:
- Whole grain, low glycemic ingredients
- Digestive support from chicory, pumpkin, psyllium, and more
- l-carnitine helps boost metabolism and calorie distribution
- Mimics the natural diet of your dogs ancestors
- Multi-protein formula: chicken, turkey, eggs, flounder
- High meat, high protein, low carb
- All-natural ingredients, zinc chelate is the only synthetic mineral added
Victor Dog Food Reviews
Victor typically gets rave reviews online. Foods made by the company consistently receive 4 and 5-star reviews from online pet food reviewers. The overwhelming majority of customer reviews on sites such as Chewy.com and Amazon are very positive. Victor hasnt been on the Whole-Dog Journals list of dry dog foods as far as we can tell, but we didnt check every list for the last 10 years. Some of their foods certainly seem to be as good as some of the brands recommended by WDJ in terms of ingredients, nutrient percentages, and manufacturing standards.
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Best For Puppies: Royal Canin Giant Puppy Dog Food
Large breed puppies require dog food that promotes steady growth, says Fuller, noting that its essential for their overall health. This is the best food for large breed puppies because 32 percent protein content, which prevents them from growing too quickly. He also loves that the food has a healthy balance of fiber sources such as beet pulp, which supports sensitive digestive systems. So, exactly which big puppies is this right for? Those up to eight months old with an expected adult weight of over 100 pounds. Heres what else you need to buy if you have a puppy.
Best Weight Management Dog Food For Large Breeds
Big dogs are prone to weight problems, even in their younger years. This can be caused by a mixture of genetics, overeating, and inappropriate diets to suit their needs and activity levels.
While carbohydrates can play an important dietary role for your dog, many commercial diets are packed with way too many carbs. The slower metabolism of bigger breeds means they need fewer quick energy sources from carbohydrates and more long-term energy from animal protein.
Weight management dog food doesnt have to be called diet or low cal to be a good weight management dog food for your large breed pooch. Smaller portions of high-quality,calorie-dense foods make great weight management dog food for your large breed pooch.
Weight management is about more than just choosing the right food. Check out our Guide to Weight Loss Dog Food to Manage Your Dog’s Weight.
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What Were Looking For:
Meets AAFCO nutritional standards: What to feed your puppy is a question I get almost every single day, says Dr. Karie Anne Johnson, a mobile veterinarian and co-founder of VIP Vet Visit. She and the other vets we spoke to all recommend choosing puppy food that has been thoroughly researched and tested for nutritional adequacy by the Association of American Feed Control Officials and meets AAFCOs nutritional standards. All of the puppy food recommended below meets or exceeds AAFCO standards.
High-quality ingredients: Zacharias also stresses that the ingredients should name the exact type of meat included and they should not contain white flour, preservatives such as BHA or BHT, propylene glycol, or rendered fat. If youre among the people who see their dog more as a member of their family than as a pet, you may want to give them minimally processed food that looks more like your own dinner than traditional kibble or wet food. Richardson says that a growing number of the pet owners she sees are interested in human-grade or fresh pet foods. As this is a relatively new concept in the pet-food world and definitions vary a bit by brand, but generally speaking, something labeled fresh pet food is minimally processed, does not use preservatives, and is gently cooked to retain nutrients and reduce the risk of harmful bacteria present in some raw diets. These foods usually come frozen and need to be thawed before each meal.
What Breeds Of Dogs Need Large
Your vet can tell you if your puppy qualifies as a large-breed dog, but according to Dr. Zay Satchu, co-founder and chief veterinary officer at Bond Vet in New York City, large-breed formulas are most appropriate for large- and giant-breed puppies expected to weigh over about 60 to 75 pounds as an adult.
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Unique Requirements Of Large Breed Dogs
So what is it exactly that makes large breed dogs different from small and medium breeds? While maintenance for a larger breed dog is important, feeding the right nutrients for growth during puppy stages is when size matters the most.
As stated above, their bone structure is the most obvious difference. It might seem that big bones require more calcium, but that is not always true.
Big dogs grow for longer than smaller dogs, so large breed puppy foods are designed to support slower and more even bone development over a longer period of time. This means they often have lower levels of calcium, phosphorus, and vitamin D, which are all vital to bone growth.
Larger breed dogs also use calories differently than small dogs do. They have a slower metabolic rate, so they require fewer calories to supply daily energy. This helps support healthier weight and muscle maintenance.
The Price Of Large Breed Dog Food
Large breed dogs consume large amounts of food, which means that it costs more to feed a large breed dog than it does to feed a small breed dog. This is an important consideration for anyone thinking about purchasing a large breed puppy.
It is tempting to purchase a cheaper food for large breed dogs to save money. While there are plenty of good quality dog foods in various price ranges, always be sure to investigate the quality of your dogs food. When you invest in dog food, you invest in your pets health. In the case of cheap, poor quality food, that can mean getting exactly what you pay for.
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Best Wet Food: American Journey Grain
When it comes to wet food, you should look for one with several sources of lean animal protein and real meat ingredients, such as beef, lamb, and venison, says James Fuller, founder of the pet nutrition site HonestWhiskers.com. The best large breed dog food options, he explains, have higher protein content to ensure muscle maintenance, as well as development. Thats why he recommends this American Journey formulation. It also has whole-food ingredients that provide dense sources of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, he notes. The organ meat significantly boosts vitamin A content, too. Combined, these qualities will give your pups tons of energy. For a special snack, you can also try making these simple homemade dog treats.
Purina Pro Plan Adult Dog Food
Adult Shredded Blend Chicken and Rice is one of 19 dry recipes included in our review of the Purina Pro Plan product line.
- First 5 ingredients: Chicken, rice, whole grain wheat, poultry by-product meal, soybean meal
- AAFCO: All Life Stages
- Options:See all available recipes
Pro Plan Adult Shredded Blend combines a hard kibble with tender, pieces of real, shredded chicken for enhanced flavor and texture.
A classic, grain-inclusive kibble that derives the majority of its animal protein from fresh chicken and poultry by-product meal. Dry matter label analysis reveals the recipe contains 30% protein, 18% fat and 44% estimated carbs delivering a fat-to-protein ratio of about 62%.
|Live probiotics to support healthy digestion|
|Omega-6 fatty acids for healthy skin and coat|
|Highly digestible recipe for optimal nutrient delivery|
|No artificial colors or flavors|
This Purina Pro recipe is recommended by 96% of actual buyers on Chewy.com and is a top pick for large breed adult dogs.
- Options:See all available recipes
Merrick Grain-Free Large Breed recipe is a high-protein formula with sweet potatoes, peas, apples and blueberries. These fruits and vegetables provide antioxidants to help fight disease resistance while the significant protein is included to help larger breed dogs retain lean muscles.
|Grain-free. No corn, wheat or soy|
|60% protein and healthy fats|
|No by-product meals|
- Options:See all available recipes
- Options:See all available recipes
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Hills Science Diet Puppy Large Breed Lamb Meal & Rice Recipe Dry Dog Food
Top 5 Ingredients: 1. Lamb Meal, 2. Brown Rice 3. Wholegrain Wheat, 4. Wholegrain Sorghum, 5. Corn Gluten Meal
Carefully formulated with natural DHA and controlled levels of calcium, Hills Science Diet Puppy recipe is a complete and balanced diet, highly recommended for growing pups.
The kibble contains only natural and high-quality ingredients to ensure perfect support and conditioning for large breed dogs in during their growing stage. Give your pooch the nutrition they deserve for optimal health and development.
Alimento Completo Para Perros De Razas Grandes
Alimento completo para perros de razas grandes en fase de crecimiento .
Características y beneficios:
- Contenido proteico ideal Para mejor desarrollo
- Mejor tránsito intestinal Provee prebióticos y probióticos activos
- Contenido ideal de vitaminas y minerales Requerimiento para el crecimiento
Las ventajas de este producto son:
- Alimento especializado con ingrediente que ayudan con el crecimiento
Carne mecánicamente separada de pollo, Harina de menudos de pollo, Harina de Pescado, Arroz medio grano, Maíz integral molido**, Afrecho de gluten de maíz 60**, Grasa de pollo , Aceite de pescado refinado, Levadura seca de cervecería, Semilla de linaza, Cloruro de potasio, Cloruro de colina, Hexametafosfato de Sodio, Pulpa de remolacha, Extracto de Yucca schidigera, Probiótico, Inulina, Fosfato dicálcico, Propionato de calcio, Hidrolizado de pollo, Suplemento vitamínico, Suplemento micromineral transquelatado.
Humedad 10%, Proteína Bruta 32%, Grasas 20%, Fibras 3%, Materia Mineral 7%, Calcio 1,3%, Fósforo 0,8%, Inulina 0,55%, Probiótico 1%.
Vitamina A 20000 UI, Vitamina B12 275 mcg, Vitamina C 200 mg, Vitamina D 2750 UI, Vitamina E 600 UI, Selenio 0,43 mg, Ácido Fólico 1,8 mg, Ácido Pantoténico 27,5 mg, Cobre 25 mg, Cobalto 0,55 mg, Hierro 275 mg, Yodo 3,3 mg, Potasio 5 g, Manganeso 88 mg, Vitamina B1 25 mg, Vitamina B2 25 mg, Vitamina B6 18 mg, Vitamina H 1,8 mg, Vitamina K 2,2 mg, Vitamina PP 90 mg, Zinc 240 mg.
Características y beneficios:
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