German Shepherds are renowned for being large, powerful dogs that have a presence when they stroll around. However, there are times when a dog isn’t as large as it’s supposed to be. This is why you are often left asking, “Why is my German Shepherd so small?”
In some cases, you may notice that your German Shepherd isn’t sitting at a healthy weight. This means it’s time to investigate and find out the root cause.
Remember, there is never a good reason to assume this is “normal” and there is nothing wrong with your German Shepherd!
This detailed guide is going to help answer the question, “Why is my German Shepherd so small?” by understanding what could cause weight loss in German Shepherds, which dog food is best for German Shepherds, and what to look for when a dog loses weight.
Best Dry Food For Dogs (EDITOR’S CHOICE)
- One (1) 37.5 lb. Bag - Purina Pro Plan High Calorie, High Protein Dry Dog Food, 30/20 Chicken & Rice Formula
- Features real chicken as the #1 ingredient
- Contains 30% protein and 20% fat to help fuel metabolic needs and maintain lean muscle
Last update on 2021-01-18 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API
The Purina Pro Plan SPORT Formula Dry Dog Food is well-noted for being the best option when it comes to ingredients, nutrients, and offering value to German Shepherds, The enriching flavor profile is appealing to dogs and is going to make it easier for them to eat. This is essential for those worried about their German Shepherds weight loss.
The all-natural chicken meat in this dog food is impossible to beat. It’s pure, easy to chew, and perfect for all types of dogs including German Shepherds.
Why Is My German Shepherd So Small?
Low-Quality Dog Food
It’s important to start with the dog food as that is going to play a substantial role in a dog’s health.
If your German Shepherd isn’t eating the right dog food, how is it going to stay healthy and maintain its weight? This is simply not going to happen!
You have to take the time to figure out what’s included in your German Shepherd’s diet.
In general, you want to go with a meat-heavy diet that is going to include 100% natural meat (i.e. chicken). This is not only going to be appealing for the dog but it’s also going to help with gaining weight. They are going to enjoy eating nutritious food and the resulting high levels of protein will make it easier on their body.
Choosing the right dog food for a skinny German Shepherd is essential. If you are not taking the time to do this, you are putting your dog in harm’s way.
Look at the different dog food brands for German Shepherds and choose the one that works best for your dog’s needs. This is a must!
When you are sitting around asking, “Why is my German Shepherd so small?” it’s also important to think about your portion sizes.
What is your dog eating and how much dog food are they getting during the day? You have to look at it in a 24-hour cycle to determine what’s healthy and what’s not.
Unfortunately, a lot of dog owners don’t realize that their intended portions aren’t enough. This means they underfeed the dog and cause them to lose a significant amount of weight rapidly.
Your goal should be to assess the dog’s weight and then increase the portion sizes by 5-10%.
This is a good starting point and you can continue to monitor the German Shepherd’s weight moving forward. Every week, you can take a new reading and then make adjustments up or down depending on what you see.
If the weight is slowly going up then continue with the same portion sizes. If not, then it’s time to further increase the portions by 5-10%.
Do this until you start to see a change in the dog’s weight. Of course, this is assuming your dog is otherwise healthy.
Digestive trouble is a concern when it comes to a dog’s health.
When you start asking, “Why is my German Shepherd so small?” you will have to keep one eye on their digestive health.
In some cases, a German Shepherd isn’t going to digest food properly. This usually has to do with issues involving the acids in their stomach and/or how they are processing nutrients once they enter the body. When there is an issue in the digestive process, the dog is going to start becoming stressed and/or fatigued quickly.
This is why you have to keep tabs on the dog to make sure you are aware of its patterns. If there is a change, you have to take action.
Digestive issues in German Shepherds are going to vary but your goal should be to focus on initiating improvement. To do this, you are highly recommended to speak to a qualified vet and have them run a complete check-up on the dog.
This will shed light on what is going on and whether or not it is an underlying digestive issue. Sometimes, a simple change in what they are eating can go a long way in adding to their weight and making it easier for them to stay healthy year-round.
Too Much Exercise
Is your German Shepherd going for walks that are too long? Is your German Shepherd playing too much during the day?
Yes, these are odd questions to ask considering how active a German Shepherd is as a breed, but it can become a problem depending on your activity levels.
There are certain dogs that tend to overextend themselves during the day, which means they don’t get enough calories to sustain themselves. This is when you start seeing major issues involving fatigue, digestive health, and/or other related concerns.
In a situation such as this, you have to focus on reducing the amount of activity they are participating in during the day.
For example, are you taking them for long walks that can extend past 2-3 hours? What about playing a game of fetch after going for a long run? These start to add up after a while, especially if you are doing it routinely.
As a result, you have to take a step back and cut into this level of physical activity immediately. Otherwise, your German Shepherd is going to fall ill and keep losing weight rapidly.
When you start asking, “Why is my German Shepherd so skinny?” this is one of the first changes a dog owner should make. It’s easy and effective.
There are several concerns when it comes to a hormonal imbalances in German Shepherds.
A healthy German Shepherd is going to have a well-balanced set of hormones. These are going to continue to keep the German Shepherd healthy throughout the year whether they are eating, running, sleeping, or resting in your lap after a long day.
Unfortunately, there are times when the hormones don’t activate as intended.
If your German Shepherd isn’t feeling healthy, you should have a complete checkup done on their hormones. This can shed light on what is going on inside the dog’s body and whether or not changes can be made.
If there are hormonal imbalances to deal with then it’s time to have a tailored approach to your German Shepherd’s routine. This is also going to include a change to what they are eating and what they are doing.
Each dog is different when it comes to an adjustment such as this.
You have to start looking at a variety of factors including what dog food the German Shepherd is eating, what activities they are participating in, and what their environment looks like (i.e. your home). This is essential information that can offer insight into what is going wrong when it comes to your German Shepherd’s lifestyle.
In the end, if you are asking, “Why is my German Shepherd so small?” it’s going to come down to the dog’s eating habits or health.
If they are not eating the right dog food for German Shepherds or not getting enough food throughout the day, this is going to lead to natural weight loss. It’s unhealthy and you have to make quick adjustments to keep them as healthy as possible.
The same goes for health-related issues in German Shepherds. Your goal should be to have them checked by a qualified vet as soon as you can.
Just like checking for the safest dog brush for German Shepherds, looking for a good undercoat rake for dogs, investing in a safe robot vacuum for dog hair, or buying high-quality chew treats for German Shepherds, your aim has to be to improve their quality of life.
Focus on the causes mentioned in this guide and then continue to make adjustments to your dog’s life. This includes buying the right dog food for German Shepherds to help with weight gain.