German Shorthaired Pointers, often shortened to GSPs, are a particularly sweet breed of dogs. They are not picky, they do not make a fuss, and are very obedient.
But GSPs have high energy, requiring vigorous exercise and positive training to thrive. As such, they need a diet that matches their naturally active state, and picking foods that keep them full while being healthy can be tricky.
The best dog foods for GSPs are those with high meat and animal protein content. As it is with humans, dogs thrive better on foods that contain as few artificial ingredients as possible. So, which are the best dog foods for German Shorthaired Pointers?
What follows is a series of reviews of five dog foods that cater to the tastes of GSPs. Let’s take a deep dive into the world of dog foods and see which one emerges as the victor!
5 Best Product Reviews
- Purina Pro Plan Performance Dry Dog Food – Top Pick
- Nutri Source Pure Vita Dog Food – Salmon & Peas
- Primal Freeze Dried Dog Food Nuggets – Turkey & Sardine
- Blue Buffalo Natural Adult Dry Dog Food – Chicken & Brown Rice
- Royal Canin Medium Adult Dry Dog Food
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Rich in protein and essential fatty acids like Omega-6, the Purina Pro Plan Dog Food features salmon as its primary ingredient. Purina has designed its dry dog food for a highly active dog like the German Shorthaired Pointer. The puppy food contains corn gluten meal and rice as its secondary and tertiary ingredients, further enriching it with protein. All in all, the nutritional value of Purina’s Dry Dog Food is quite high and will keep your pup healthy and happy for a long time.
The puppy food is crunchy and hard, so your German Shorthaired Pointer pup will enjoy it as a part of his high-quality diet. It supports digestion and boosts immunity with a 30/20 Salmon and Rice Formula. Moreover, the Purina Pro Plan Sport Performance is not limited by breed, so if you have multiple pups in your home, this will sate their appetite as well.
The food can be a little expensive and lighten your wallet a bit if you choose to buy in bulk.
Designed for highly active dogs, Purina’s Salmon and Rice/Cod formulas have proven to be a favorite among pups. The high nutritious value, combined with digestion and immune system-supportive ingredients make it one of the top contenders for the best dog food for GSPs.
Nutri Source’s Pure Vita Grain utilizes salmon as its primary ingredient as well to provide a protein-rich diet for your dog. For the secondary ingredients, the brand brings in sweet potatoes, peas, and pea-based ingredients for higher carbohydrate content and Omega fatty acids. Despite its high protein, carb, and plant-based ingredients, the dry dog food is easy on your dog’s stomach and supports their digestive system as well.
Pure Vita was designed to appeal to even picky eaters, ensuring they enjoy their mouth-watering meal without losing out on nutritional value. Your furry friend will maintain a high level of energy, thanks to the high-carb and protein content of this premium food.
The lack of grains may be seen by some as an unfortunate omission.
Offering a highly nutritious meal that is appealing to dogs of all breeds, the Nutri Source Pure Vita strikes a chord with smaller pups immediately. Ideally, the fewer sources of meat involved in puppy food, the better and Pure Vita abides by this rule to a tee.
Primal’s Freeze-Dried dog food is made with turkey as its primary ingredient, combined with USDA-certified organic fruits and vegetables, and is completely grain-free. For the highest nutritional value, Primal has opted for whole-food nutrition and certified organic produce as the ingredients with little to no processing. This means no preservatives, no artificial flavors or colors, and no lab-created vitamins.
Lean meats like turkey aid your pup in building muscle, while sardines make the food rich in protein. Tertiary ingredients like organic kale, celery, and sunflower seeds add to this nutritional value, making it ideal for your GSP. Primal’s freeze-dried nuggets can be a part of your dog’s daily diet and it will certainly become one of their favorites.
The Primal Freeze-Dried dog food is a bit expensive.
Primal’s Freeze-Dried dog food is a grain-free meal containing ample nutritional value, thanks to the abundance of different meats and plant-based nutrition. Not only that, but the complete omission of artificial ingredients makes it stand out among the competition.
Blue Buffalo has doubled on the meat content of this dry dog food, with its most prominent ingredients being chicken and chicken meal. The use of chicken meal is a highlight, as it is pure meat concentrate and contains thrice the amount of protein compared to fresh chicken meat. Blue Buffalo’s formula involves the use of grains like brown rice, barley and oatmeal to supplement your canine friend with carbohydrates and fiber. This results in a meal that is more carbohydrate-heavy when compared to other dog foods.
While your pup will be consuming more carbohydrates than in other meals, Blue Buffalo’s formula doesn’t lag behind when it comes to proteins and fats. In fact, it matches the competition and helps your dog maintain a high level of energy. The inclusion of tertiary ingredients like pea products and dried yeast only helps its case.
Blue Buffalo’s Dog Food does contain an artificial color known as ‘Caramel Color.’
Blue Buffalo’s carb-centric dog food sacrifices on no fronts when it comes to nutrition. It will prove to be a healthy part of your dog’s meals and the inclusion of grains provides them with a good source of fiber.
Specifically targeted towards medium-sized dogs like the German Shorthaired Pointers, Royal Canin dog food is suited for dogs aged between one and seven years. Royal Canin has created a blend of prebiotics and antioxidants for dogs to build on their natural defenses and immune system. With precise levels of DHA, the dog food will maintain your dog’s skin and coat health.
The two primary ingredients of this formula are brewers rice, the product left after milling rice, and chicken by-product meal, the by-product of slaughterhouse waste. While the former offers modest nutrition to your pup, the latter has the largest share of protein in the dog food. The rest of the ingredients include grains like oat groats, wheat, and corn gluten meal. With a fat-to-protein ratio of 54%, the Royal Canin dog food has higher protein than its competition while lacking a smidge in fat and carbs.
Royal Canin’s dog food could have included more meat-based ingredients for additional nutritional value.
The dog food stands out among the competition when it comes to providing your canine friend with protein. But its target breed and age range further limits your German Shorthaired Pointer’s consumption of the dog food, in contrast to competitors.
1. When should you consider changing what your GSP eats?
If you notice no health or behavioral issues stemming from your dog’s eating habits, there’s no need to swap the puppy food out. However, it’s important to have the vet check your dog for any diseases that may have gone under your radar. This will allow you to pinpoint what changes you should make to your canine friend’s diet, as well as the portions ideal for him.
Depending on the health issue dogs face, the dietary adjustments they’ll need will vary. Here’s a brief guide detailing the changes they’ll require for a healthier life ahead.
A. Digestive Issues
Knowing if your dog has trouble digesting food is simple: look at the stool he leaves behind. It might gross you out, but it reveals a lot about your furry friend’s health. Ideally, the stool should be firm but not hard and colored an earthy brown.
If you’ve been feeding your dog foods of a particular brand and nothing else, you may want to switch it out. Not every brand suits every dog, and you may have to see what kind of food your dog likes while keeping an eye on their poop.
Another important factor that leads to digestion issues is overfeeding, which overwhelms a dog’s digestive system. Overfeeding can lead to diarrhea and complications that come with it, so stick to the recommended amount.
B. Skin And Coat Issues
Diet plays a major role in a dog’s skin health. If your GSP has been scratching or licking a particular part of his skin, it may be time for you to switch out the food. The primary reason for foods causing skin problems is allergies.
The trouble with allergies is that there is no clear way of identifying if your dog has an adverse reaction to foods. Allergy tests in pets are quite inaccurate and expensive as well, so it may be wise to reconsider before taking any tests.
Your dog may be sensitive to certain kinds of foods, and stopping the consumption of said foods may prove to be effective. This is known as an elimination diet, which is known to be an effective method of pinpointing an allergen. If successful, the itching will subside within a matter of weeks, resulting in both a healthy skin and healthy coat.
However, should your dog face a more serious skin or fur related issue, you should always follow the directions provided by the vet.
Being overweight results in dogs becoming lethargic and health issues like high blood pressure, heart problems, diabetes, and mobility issues. If your dog is obese, you may want to switch to a diet that gives him less calories while keeping him full for long. A high-fiber diet may assist in keeping him in a healthy weight range along with regular exercise.
As always, seek veterinary guidance to see what suits your German Shorthaired Pointer the best. It would be unwise to try and DIY solve your pup’s health issues.
2. What kind of dog foods are ideal?
A diet that is rich in nutrients and is fulfilling for your dog can be considered good. It may surprise you to know that processed food may well be what’s best for your four-legged friend. The reason for this is the presence of all the nutrients they need in order to stay healthy.
Dogs can be fed a variety of foods ranging from a meat-based diet to fruits and vegetables. The nutrients in plant-based foods can prove to be invaluable for dogs, and food containing a healthy amount of them may be considered ideal.
You must also keep an eye on the serving age and breed of any puppy food brand. If your German Shorthaired Pointer is not a part of a food’s target, you should steer clear of it. No dog food remains suitable for growing puppies throughout their life.
3. How much food is ideal for my German Shorthaired Pointer?
There is no one-size-fits-all dietary portion for dogs, much like there isn’t one for humans. Overfeeding your pets is a serious concern, and avoiding it is up to the dog owners. While the guidelines provided by the manufacturer can help, you should not adhere strictly to it.
There is more involved in it than what the guidelines let on. The factors that affect a dog’s eating amounts are the level of activity, time of year, illness and more.
What you must avoid in order to prevent your pup from becoming overweight is to limit the scraps you feed him from your plate. While those puppy dog eyes may tempt you to feed him, it’s best to not give them excessive amounts. Dogs are not equipped to digest human foods as their digestive systems are fundamentally different from ours.
If the scraps amount to more than 10% of your dog’s diet, it can lead to obesity in them.
The Nutri Source and the Primal Freeze-Dried Nuggets are great for your GSP’s health and tastes, while Royal Canin offers them a high energy diet. These will cater to your dog’s preferences and keep him happy and energetic enough to play to his heart’s content.
That said, the Purina Pro Performance dog food provides the most complete and balanced dietary fix. Made specifically for dogs that require a lengthy physical workout every day, the Purina dog food will boost adult German Shorthaired Pointers’ immunity while keeping his nutritional needs in check.
For a medium-sized dog that is also highly energetic, German Shorthaired Pointers require a very specific kind of diet. Food that is high in quality and nutrition is imperative for healthy dogs as well as keeping them from becoming lethargic.
After all, pets are a part of the family, and we all want our pets to live a long and happy life!