What is the Right Dog Food for GSP?
A jovial, healthy and highly spirited German Shorthaired Pointer is the pride of every GSP pet parent. But with the demanding daily life commitments, not every pet owner can prepare a wholly balanced meal for their furry. A meal with recommendable portions of vitamins, minerals, proteins, and all other vital elements is essential for wholesome growth. So the best option is high-quality dry dog food, which is easily available.
However, with the numerous options in the current market, it’s easy to get confused, no matter how many times you’ve shopped before. Below are some essential considerations to help you choose right:
5 Main Criteria to Choose Food:
- Standard or Special (for dogs with allergies, diseases, obesity)
- Dog Size
- Dog Age
- Life Style & Level of Activity
- Classes of Dry Dog Food (Ingredients Quality)
We have carefully examined the above criteria in this review to help you make a quick and ideal choice. German Shorthaired Pointers (GPSs) are middle-sized dogs, so the food recommendations in this article are best suitable for middle-sized pups. We have also used standard classified food. For special food, it’s advisable to consult your vet for prescriptions and expert directions.
Remember GSPs are popularly known for their high energy levels, commonly attributed to their hunting nature. They therefore must be fed well to continue enjoying life.
What next? Get to understand your dog. What’s his age bracket? Equip yourself with the right information before selecting. You should also consider the various classifications of food, as shown below.
4 Groups of Food Based on Age:
- “Starter” As the name suggests, these are the first classification of dog foods. They are meant for puppies, who have stopped taking their mothers’ milk
- “Junior” food is consumed by puppies within their first year of life
- “Adult” food is meant for dogs between the ages of 1-7
- “Senior” food is for dogs older than 7 years (7+)
The main reason for classifying these foods is because the digestive system of dogs varies depending on age. Some dogs can withstand intense ingredients, while others can’t. So ensure you always adhere to your dog’s age, whenever selecting food for him. Dog food experts indulge distinct formula for each food category, to ensure they offer overall wellness and boost prolonged dog life.
5 Best Dry Dog Food for GSP Puppies & Juniors
It’s important to note that puppies’ food should contain ARA and DHA. These are equivalent to the vital fatty acids present in their mother’s milk. And they help in boosting their retinal health, and cognitive functions. As for junior dogs, they thrive well with a diet full of proteins, carbohydrates, and fiber. If you want more information on dog nutritional values based on different age groups, check out the Merck Veterinary Manual, which has a lot of dog nutritional awareness details.
|Blue Buffalo Life Protection Formula for Puppies||
|Hill's Science Diet Dry Dog Food||
|Acana Grain Free, Puppy & Junior Formula||
|Taste of the Wild with Ancient Grains for Puppies||
Best Dehydrated Organic
|The Honest Kitchen Dehydrated Organic Puppy Food||
Besides responsible breeding and appropriate exercise, nutrition is another cornerstone for a long and healthy dog life. Feed a high quality food that provides your German Shorthaired Pointer with energy. A high meat content is crucial for the food quality. Meat should be the main component of the food. Give your dog at least two meals a day and give him a break afterwards. Young dogs need up to four portions a day.
If you would like to treat your German Shorthaired Pointer, we recommend tasty natural snacks such as beef ears or chewing bones and chewing rolls made of cowhide. These also support dental care. Small treats and training snacks are particularly suitable for training. Neither the basic feed nor snacks should contain sugar or grain. If you go on a longer trip, it is best to take a drinking bottle with an integrated bowl with you on the way – this way your companion can drink easily in between.
7 Best DRY Food for Adult German Shorthaired Pointer
These are well-balanced, nutrient-rich foods that are also easily digestible to enhance the overall wellness and improved health of adult dogs.
Best Natural Holistic
|Blue Buffalo Life Protection Formula for Adult Dogs||
|Taste of the Wild with Ancient Grains||
|Acana Grain Free, Wild Atlantic Dog Food||
|IAMS Proactive Health Adult Minichunks||
Best Natural Weight Control
|Purina Pro Plan Weight Management||
Unique pH Balanced (Alkaline)
|Canine Caviar Limited Ingredient Alkaline Holistic Dog Food||
Best Dehydrated Organic
|The Honest Kitchen Dehydrated Organic Dog Food||
5 Best Dry Foods for Senior German Shorthaired Pointer
Senior dogs are pretty delicate. And since their health issues revolve around joint pains and mobility issues, their food formulas should take care of these needs. Some vital ingredients to look out for include Omega-3 and other minerals. Food best for improving bladder, heart, and kidney functions makes great choices. Add to this energy, and mental sharpness boosting food and you will be good to go.
|CANIDAE Pure Senior Recipe||
|Blue Buffalo Freedom for Senior Dogs||
|ORIJEN Senior Dry Dog Food||
|Purina ONE Senior Dog Food, SmartBlend Vibrant Maturity Adult 7+||
Best for 11+ Year Dogs
|Hill's Science Diet Dry Dog Food, Adult 11+ for Senior Dogs||
Choosing Dry Dog Food Based on 5 Main Criteria
As mentioned earlier, we have 5 main dog food selection standards. We have already talked about the age division in the above section. Next, we examine the remaining parts.
Standard and Special Dog Food
We have 3 types of food in these categories, depending on your dog’s special needs:
- Therapeutic Food is meant for dogs with specific health issues. A veterinarian has to prescribe the food, with strict instructions on its consumption. The food is primarily purchased from premium class food manufacturers.
- Purpose-Built Food is meant for the treatment and prevention of specific dog health issues, such as digestive, urinary tract, and obesity issues. Food for sterilized dogs also falls under this category.
- Standard (or Daily) Food – for all healthy dogs. They are safe for every diet.
Note: Always adhere to your dog’s daily food allowance. What he eats, determines his general wellness and survival rate.
So, if your GSP has no health issues, he will be fine with daily standard food recommendations. But dogs with specific health issues such as allergic reactions to various foods, arthritis, digestive conditions, among others, should be on therapeutic foods. Remember, each food brand is different, and not all stock dry therapeutic food. In this category, the most popular foods are Purina, Hills, and Royal Canine.
When examining food for dogs with various health issues, you will see labels with specific focus details. For instance, for allergic dogs, you’ll see “hypoallergenic Dog”, “weight control” for dogs with obesity, and much more.
Therapeutic foods shouldn’t be used like standard foods, but rather according to veterinarian prescription.
Choosing Food by Dog Size
Before anything else, we would like to state that as a parent to the German Shorthaired Pointer, and any other middle-sized dog, this category might not be of much significance.
But, it’s a necessary read, if you plan of owning small, mini, or giant dog breeds in the future. In this case, foods designed for special dog sizes are recommended.
Why? Because food pallets aren’t the same in every food. For instance, giant dogs can comfortably enjoy foods with big pallets, but mini dogs might not even chew the same food. Also, the food nutrients of each type are different. Take a Great Dane puppy, for instance, he needs more calcium for spurt growth season, than a GSP would.
Choosing Dog Food by Dog Age
Dogs like humans pass through various life stages. And each one of them has various nutritional needs (phosphorous, calcium, etc.). Also remember, the metabolic process for each dog age is different. So, ensure you feed your dog according to his proper-age diet. You shouldn’t for instance, feed a puppy with a senior dog diet, and vice versa. Always go for dry food that suits your dog’s age, and not because of quality. Your veterinarian should be your go-to person in case of any doubts.
Choosing Food by LifeStyle & Level of Dog Activity
Right here is another important factor to consider when buying dog food. Your GSP will appreciate your objective judgment concerning his food selection.
For instance, if he’s always running around, likes hunting escapades, or wouldn’t miss a walk with you, he needs food for energetic and active dogs to keep him up and about. For such foods, check the container labels for “Energy” or “Active”. Also, if your dog has been recently sick /stressed or would require an energy boost over winter, this food will be best for him.
On the other hand, if your German Shorthaired Pointer loves “lazing” around his GSP bed or a favorite spot of the coach, get him a “Normal”, “Light”, or “Standard” food, to avoid gaining too much weight. It’s also a good way of ensuring he stays in shape.
Classes of Dry Dog Food (based on quality and nutrient content)
Pricing and quality of the dog food are some of the vital attributes you should look out for when choosing food for your GSP. But if you’re a new pet parent, it’s good to know about the various dog food classes. Also what if you go for cheat pallets? And what are the consequences? We answer below.
- Economy Class Food
Dog food in this category contains moderate-quality proteins. Not the one meant for a high-end dog lifestyle. The main ingredients include low-quality elements like by-products of bones and meat, soy, among others. The manufacturers of such foods also use cheap and harmful preservatives and flavors, which might cause stomach discomfort to some dogs.
You will also notice that such foods lack vitamins, so you will have to source for some on your own. However, this type of dog food isn’t easily absorbable, thus not very beneficial to the body. It simply curbs the hunger for a short while, which will get you spending more. If your dog feeds on it for long, without any other options, he becomes vulnerable to all sorts of diseases such as stomach disorders.
- Premium Class Food
This food is high in protein, well balanced with minerals and vitamins, and includes whole grains as part of its ingredients. They might also be grain-free, but contain vegetables to make a wholesome balanced meal to keep your dog healthy and active.
However, like the economy class food, they contain some preservatives and have a few poor-quality elements. But it all depends on the brand. So ensure to cross-examine the ingredient labels before purchasing.
- Super Premium Food
They contain top-quality proteins, such as meat, eggs, and fish as the main element, and minimal grains, or even grain-free. They mostly include healthy supplements and use all-natural preservatives.
- Holistic Food
This is the highest quality of dog food. The elite protein ingredient is carefully selected and balanced, together with necessary supplements. They incorporate probiotics to boost digestion and are good enough for human use.
Although such food is quite expensive compared to others, they’re in the long run affordable. How? Because of the high-quality nutritional value of the ingredients used, your dog will need only a small portion of it to fill his daily nutritional requirements.
Quality food also means fewer visits to the veterinarian as the food is balanced and filled with all vital nutrients to keep your dog all-around healthy.
Why Choose Premium, Super Premium, or Holistic Dog Food?
- Composed of carefully selected and eco-friendly ingredients
- Made in accordance with the highest food preparation standards
- Doesn’t include preservatives, flavors, soy, corn, and any other harmful elements
Tips on Feeding Your German Shorthaired Pointer Right
You can seek professional help (veterinarian, breeders, etc.) to help you with the selection process. But, if you follow the guidelines given in here, you can do it on your own.
- Ensure you cross-examine the ingredients used. Food shouldn’t contain any by-products or any harmful elements as mentioned above. But should be rich in minerals, vitamins, fish or meat, all-natural
- The caloric value of the products should be well indicated, including the percentage of carbohydrates, fats, and proteins
- Larger dogs have no less appetite. But larger breeds have slower metabolism, they need less calories and fat and require a higher protein content to maintain their shape. Dry food for large pets differ in size of granules. For large size dogs they are produced about one and a half centimeters in diameter. The smaller size of the granules will not provide the jaws with full work, which is important for the health of the dog
- Adult GSPs are fed twice a day, after morning and evening walks. Breakfast and dinner do not take more than a quarter of an hour
- The bowl is cleaned, even if the food is not eaten
- The pup should always have access to clean fresh water
- The daily rate of food for animals is not the same, but equal in size. It depends on the physical load experienced by the pet since the last meal. If the pet is actively training, a lot of time walking outside, the volume of the portion is increased by one third. If the load is low, the pet walks little, more time to rest or sleep, the portion is reduced by about 15%.
- The main indicator of a proper diet is a healthy, well-fed, strong dog, whose weight fits into the norm for its age.
- You can’t give food to a GSP before training, huтting, active walk or right after it. Larger dogs have a much higher risk of developing a gut twist than their little friends. These situations are dangerous and need urgent veterinary assistance. Give your GSP about one hour of rest before he eats after exercises.
If you must go for economy foods, avoid those with untrustworthy ingredients. If you feed your dog harmful food, you’re deliberately shortening his lifespan, and exposing him to diseases. Also, ensure you combine economy food with other types of high-value foods, which will be costly in the long run.
We advise you to consider choosing premium, super-premium, or holistic dog food for a healthy and long-living GSP. They are usually well-balanced and use minimal or no harmful elements. Besides, you won’t spend more cash on extra nutrition. Plus, the daily intake is lesser than economy class food, thus the food will serve you for long.
Is Dry Food Good for Dogs?
Contrary to common beliefs, well-balanced dog food isn’t only made of meat and bones. In fact, not all types of bones and meat are suitable for your pup. You can feed your dog food rich in whole grains, minerals, vitamin supplements, vegetables, and fatty acids to reach their daily nutritional requirements. If the food lacks these components, your dog is likely to suffer from malnutrition, which impacts his entire wellbeing.
As mention earlier, low-quality foods contain by-products, and most of the “empty” additives, and preservatives, which can potentially harm your dog. Some of the common side effects of such food include loss of hair, digestive, and urinary issues. However, not all food pallets are harmful. If expertly prepared, they should contain all the vital elements your dog needs at every stage of growth.
Also, consider what your dog loves. Some pups are picky. They might not enjoy vegetables, and grains, which might eventually lead to deficiency of some minerals no matter how a good caregiver you’re. Each dog is unique and might require different foods at each stage of their lives, so the question of whether dry food is good or bad for them, simply fades away.
Spicing Food Up
Did you know that you can spice up your German Shorthaired Pointer’s food from time to time? Yes, he too enjoys a variety of tastes. Consider adding potatoes, cooked chicken, rice, bananas, raw and cooked carrots to his diet. Remember, moderation is key. And as you introduce various foods, give room to detect the ones he enjoys most, and the foods that give him allergic reactions, etc. This will help you know which ones to eliminate at the earliest convenience. He will love you more for this.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is Recommended Diet for GSP?
Dry food of Holistic, Premium and Super Premium classes is suitable for GSP's nutrition, as it is made from quality ingredients. It should include beef or salmon, fish (protein and phosphorus), acids, minerals, fiber. Pay attention to the complete group of vitamins and the absence of fasteners, a normally working stomach must cope with this on its own. In different periods of maturation, the body of German Shorthaired Pointer has different needs. The diet for puppies is calculated taking into account intensive growth, and for older dogs - with the possibility of preventing age-related diseases.
How to Feed a German Shorthaired Pointer?
Daily dosage is indicated on the packages, which is strictly observed. There is no need to increase the dosage, it affects the performance and health of your pet. For puppies up to 3 months the granules are softened in yogurt or water. If feeding with quality dry food, it is not necessary to give him additives or other products. Prepared meals are optimally balanced, any additional yummy stuff may course metabolic disorders and dangerous diseases.
What Vitamins Does My GSP Need?
Vitamin complex is an essential element of the diet if you feed your GSP with meat, by-products and vegetables. When eating dry food, he needs additional vitamins from time to time. Vitamin C is necessary for the immune system, provides full development of the muscular system, bones, joints, teeth. Vitamin D is used to form the skeleton, especially needed by puppies during their first year of life. Calcium is absorbed together with vitamin D, used to form teeth, skeleton bones, makes coat beautiful and shiny.
Always remember – we are here to help you with the right choice. So please do not hesitate to ask any questions because we will answer them right away!