Large and giant breed dogs like German Shepherds, Labrador Retrievers, Mastiffs and Great Danes can weigh 56 pounds or more as adults. When choosing the right food for your large or giant breed dog, consider these special nutritional needs:
Large and giant breed dogs are prone to osteoarthritis and other hip and joint conditions. Large- and giant breed puppies should ideally be fed puppy food specifically for these breeds, which are formulated to have the recommended allowances of nutrients and energy to help them grow at an average rate and keep them healthy. Feeding for maximum growth can increase the risk of hip and joint stress as well as skeletal deformities and may actually decrease lifespan. Premium dog foods for large breeds rich in fatty acids like EPA and DHA and those that contain Glucosamine and Chondroitin can promote hip and joint health.
Weight issues can also be a problem for large dogs. Help your large dog maintain a healthy weight with regular exercise and recommended portions of premium light or reduced calorie dog foods.
To help keep your large breed dog healthy into his/her golden years, feed age-appropriate premium dog foods with quality ingredients and high-quality protein sources.
The information used in this report is approved by PetSmart nutritionists and vet experts.
Information from "Small Animal Clinical Nutrition," 5th Edition, Hand, Thatcher, Remillard, Roudebush, Novotny, Copyright 2010 by Mark Morris Institute was used in this report.