How Much Does a 6-Month-Old German Shepherd Dog Eat in a Day? A Feeding Guide

How Much Does a 6-Month-Old German Shepherd Dog Eat in a Day? A Feeding Guide

A 6-month-old German Shepherd puppy is at a fun age. They are playful, active, and growing rapidly. They look like adults but act like puppies. As they grow, the way you need to be feeding German Shepherd puppies may change.

Most 6-month-old German Shepherd puppies should eat between 2 – 3.5 cups of dog food 3 times a day. This amounts to 2,700-3,900 calories a day. 

Activity, age, health, and food type factor into how much your 6-month-old puppy should eat. Read on to find out how to calculate how much your dog should be eating.

A 6-month-old German Shepherd: What to expect?

At 6 months old, your German Shepherd is not out of the juvenile growth stage and is officially an adolescent.

As a large dog breed, by now they should be half of a hundred pounds. Hopefully, by now the biting, chewing, and jumping have subsided as their teething has been completed.

You will need a lot of love and patience now as these big fur balls show their true colors. Expect them to keep on testing your limits as they try to see how much they can get away with.

Consistent socializing and training are your best friends if you want to keep them out of trouble.

Here’s how handsome a 6-month-old German Shepherd looks when he is calm and relaxed:

The feeding guide for a 6-month-old German Shepherd puppy

The lively German Shepherd puppy will be going through many changes as he reaches 6 months of age. It is important to adjust how you are feeding German Shepherd puppies as they transition into a juvenile.

Feeding guide for a 6-month-old German Shepherd Puppy (per day)
Calories 2700 and 3900 kcal
Feeding Amounts2-3.5 cups of kibble per meal, depending on the weight
Feeding times3 times
Mealtime Length15-20 minutes max.

Calories need (2700-3900 kcal per day)

A six-month-old GSD puppy should be fed between 2700 and 3900 kcal a day, depending on their weight.

Feeding amounts (2-3.5 cups per day)

Your German Shepherd puppy should eat around 2 – 3.5 cups of food per day, divided among three feedings. This should be about 2700 – 3900 calories a day. Your dog is considered a juvenile now and should have an increase in the amount of food.

Feeding time (3 times a day)

A 6-month-old GSD puppy should get fed three times a day. The best time to feed your GSD puppy is about an hour after he has exercised and relieved himself. Your dog will be the most hungry at this time.

Mealtime length (15-20 minutes per meal)

The usual recommended mealtime length is 15-20 minutes. If your puppy hasn’t eaten all of his food at this time, take the food away and clean the dish. You shouldn’t leave the dish out all day because it encourages snacking, which can lead to picky eating. 

Nutrition Requirements for a 6-Month-Old German Shepherd puppy’s growth 

Six months old is a transitional period for your puppy. They are not quite an adult, not quite a puppy. Their nutritional needs will be changing, but they still need the essentials that all German Shepherd puppies need: protein, fat, carbohydrates, and ash (vitamins and minerals).

Protein (30-40%)

Proteins are essential in the growth of your GSD. Proteins from meat such as chicken, beef, and lamb contain amino acids which increase brain cell production and muscle growth. 

Your active puppy will be growing rapidly. He will also be learning a lot in the coming months, so protein is an important part of their diet. Puppies should make up 30-40% of your dog’s diet.

Fat (15-20%)

The oils from the meat fats, such as chicken fat or beef tallow or fish oils,, increase the oils in your pup’s hair follicles. This increases coat shine and promotes supple skin. 6-month-olds are starting to develop their thick, double-coat, so these healthy fats should make up 15 – 20% of their diet.

Carbohydrates (5-8%)

Carbs supply energy to your dog, which a 6-month-old German Shepherd puppy will be using a lot of. Carbohydrates are usually sources of dietary fiber that help your dog’s digestive system. Your dog should consume about 5-8% of carbohydrates in their diet. 

Other essential nutrients (e.g. vegetables, fruits, minerals, and vitamins)

All of the other necessary minerals and vitamins (also known as ash) your puppy consumes aid in immune and hormone health, eye and teeth health, growth, and a multitude of other functions. Ash is important for your dog to be strong and healthy.

How much should a 6-Month-Old German Shepherd Puppy eat? 

When considering how much you should feed your 6-month-old German Shepherd puppy, you should keep in mind their activity level, age, and health. Each individual dog will have varying requirements, and no two dogs are alike. 


6-month-old German Shepherd puppies are pretty active, but some dogs are more active than others. The more active the dog, the more calories he will burn. If your dog is particularly active, you may want to increase his food amount slightly.


Since your puppy is transitioning to the juvenile stage, their growth needs have changed. This means their serving size will increase slightly. It will continue to increase every few months until your dog is one year old. Then, it should remain steady for a while. 

GSD AgeNumber of feedings per dayAverage calories per dayTotal cups of kibbles per day
0 to 12 weeks41200 – 2400 calories1 – 2 cups
3 to 6-months32000 – 2200 calories1.5 – 2.5 cups
6 to 12 months32700 – 3900 calories2 – 3.5 cups
12 to 18 months23300 – 4250 calories3.5 – 4.5 cups


Certain health conditions can affect how much your dog should eat. If he is underweight, you may need to include more carbohydrates and larger portions. If he is overweight, your dog should have fewer carbohydrates and smaller portions.

Other health conditions may have certain mealtime requirements. Be sure to consult your vet about their recommendations. 

What to feed a 6-Month-Old German Shepherd puppy?

At this age, a German Shepherd’s body is growing rapidly, so a healthy diet with the correct number of calories and enough protein is vital.

There are many types of foods to feed your 6-month-old German Shepherds puppy. You can feed them dry food, raw food, or even homemade food. All of these diet plans come with their pros and cons. 

1. Feeding a German Shepherd puppy kibble

Dry dog food is a common choice for dog owners. Kibble has been As with all dog foods types, there are benefits and drawbacks to feeding a German Shepherd puppy kibble long term. You, as the owner, have to weigh your individual dog’s needs to determine if it is right for you. 

• The hard kibble pieces scrape tartar off teeth
• Convenient and easy to measure
• Completely balanced for you
• Cheaper
• Many varieties of flavors, styles, and diets 
• Long shelf life
• Can be made with low-quality ingredients
• Risk of contamination in the factory
• High in carbohydrates
• Not very tasty for dogs

Suggested feeding amount per day: Approximately 2 – 3.5 cups 

Averaged cost per month: Between $25-$50 a month for 30lb bags of dog food, based on the quality and brand.

Who is this for?

Dry dog food is for busy dog owners who need a fast, convenient way to feed their puppy. Dry food can easily be accounted for in a budget. It is also consistent each time. It balances the meal for you, so you don’t have to calculate how many proteins, fats, vitamins and minerals your dog is consuming. 

2. Feeding a German Shepherd puppy a raw diet

Many German Shepherd owners feed their puppies a raw food diet. Feeding German Shepherd puppies this diet simulates a natural way of eating and eliminates processed food.

• Natural, high-quality ingredients
• Tasty for your dog
• Better for sensitive stomachs
• Promotes a healthy immune system
• You have control over your dog’s ingredients
• No fillers
• More variety
• Time-consuming to prepare
• Dietary needs have to be calculated and balanced by the owner
• Raw meat can pose a danger to the human preparing it
• Risk of malnutrition if you don’t balance your dog’s diet properly

Suggested feeding amount per day: About 2 – 3.5 cups, based on your dog’s weight. Check out here to help calculate amounts.

Averaged cost per month: about $2-4 per meal for prepackaged raw diets

Who is this for?

A raw food diet is for the German Shepherd owner who wants to feed their dog the best quality foods. This is also for dogs with sensitive stomachs. The owner needs to set aside time each week to plan and prepare their dog’s food. 

3. Feeding a German Shepherd puppy a homemade diet

Homemade dog foods are cooked and prepared by the owner. These diets use healthy ingredients the owner is buying at the supermarket already.

• Can be adjusted to a dog’s individual needs
• Helpful in managing health conditions
• High-quality ingredients
• No fillers
• More variety
• A nutritious balance needs to be calculated and maintained
• Owners need to research foods toxic to dogs
• Easy to overfeed 
• Time-consuming

Suggested feeding amount per day: 2 – 3.5  cups a day. 

Averaged cost per month: between $100- $150 a month (about $3.75 a day) based on the size of the dog

Who is this for?

Homemade dog foods are for owners who want all of the benefits of a raw diet without having to deal with raw meat. These meals take time to prepare and you need to make sure they are well-balanced nutritionally. Dogs with sensitivities, allergies, and health conditions benefit the most from this diet. 

Is my German Shepherd puppy having the right weight? 

Juvenile German Shepherd puppies are very active. They will start to look lean and lanky. This is normal. Some owners try to increase their puppy’s food amount to bulk up their dog. However, to determine whether your dog is too thin and needs an increase in food, look at your dog’s body shape. 

Look from above, if your dog has an extreme hourglass shape, he’s too thin. Then, feel your dog’s ribs. You should be able to feel them, but they shouldn’t be prominent. Finally,  look at your puppy from the side. He should have a tuck-up between his ribs and back legs, but if the tuck-up is too high, he’s too thin. 

In contrast, if your dog is larger in all of these areas, he may be overweight. 

Obesity can exacerbate health issues that German Shepherds are already susceptible to including hip dysplasia. Being overweight also increases the risk of your GSD getting various diseases such as arthritis, diabetes, hypertension and even cancer

Feeding treats to a German Shepherd: Things to consider

Treats are an effective way of training your German Shepherd puppy, but too many treats can lead to obesity. Also, giving treats on demand can form bad habits with your puppy. Just as with dog food, feed your puppy high-quality ingredient treats. 

Should you give your German Shepherd supplements?

German Shepherds can be prone to hip and joint problems, so at 6 months old, it could be beneficial to add glucosamine to your dog’s diet. These supplements are great for joint health.

German Shepherds often need probiotics, as well, such as this one. These support gut health and maintain healthy gut bacteria in your dog. 

You can feed your dog natural food as supplements, as well. The following foods work well to supplement your dog’s diet:

  • Yucca
  • Nettle
  • Licorice root
  • Alfalfa
  • Parsley

Water intake for a 6-Month-Old German Shepherd puppy 

German Shepherd puppies should drink 1.5 cups of water every 2-3 hours. They may even need more than that after exercise. This amount should also increase in hot weather. Keep a fresh dish of water out every day. 


Being a large dog breed, a 6-month-old German Shepherd puppy is beginning to look like an adult, but he still has many puppy needs. Consider his age, activity, weight, type of dog food, and overall health when calculating how much he should eat. This will promote a healthy and active German Shepherd dog.