Doberman Pinchers, also simply known as Dobermans, were first developed in the 19th century. Today, these dogs carry many of the same traits as their ancestors. They're incredibly intelligent, active, and loyal.
As a result, you can find these canines working alongside the military and many police forces around the world. With that being said, Dobermans also make great family companions.
With their slender bodies and their constant supply of energy, you're going to want to feed your pooch a high-quality kibble.
These dogs have unique needs that must be addressed to stay healthy.
They're also susceptible to many health issues. There's a lot to consider when choosing a dog food that can help your pooch thrive.
In a hurry? Here's a quick overview of the recommended formula's.
Daily Calorie Intake
Dobermans are quite large. Adult females can weigh up to 90 pounds when fully-grown while males can reach 100 pounds. In terms of height, most dogs stand somewhere between 25 and 28 inches at their withers.
A high-calorie diet is needed to support their muscles and provide them with the energy they need to stay active.
When you're splitting up your dog's meals, you should measure their daily intake in calories rather than volume.
The nutritional density of dry dog food varies from manufacturer to manufacturer. You should always take a look at the package to see how many calories are in each cup.
Healthy adult Dobermans will require upwards of 2,100 calories every single day. This amount should be split into smaller meals so that your dog can refuel their energy supply. If your dog is still growing, they won't need as many calories. 1,800 calories a day will usually suffice. That number will get even lower as your dog approaches his or her senior years.
Older dogs tend to slow down a bit and spend more time lounging around. They'll only need about 1,300 calories every day.
It should be noted that these numbers are considered a healthy average. Your dog's need may be different. It's important to monitor your pup's eating habits and activity levels. Their lifestyle will change throughout their lives. You'll need to make adjustments to their diet to ensure that your dog won't gain weight or experience other potentially-dangerous health issues.
5 of the Best Dry Dog Foods for Dobermans
1. Merrick Grain-Free Real Buffalo + Sweet Potato Recipe Dry Dog Food
This formula from Merrick[ is a healthy option that's free of ingredients that could cause potential allergic reactions. It's free of grains and utilizes nutritional ingredients like sweet potatoes.
Deboned buffalo is the main protein source. It makes up approximately 38% of the recipe. The food also contains many advantageous nutrients through its inclusion of ingredients like alfalfa and blueberries.
A healthy dose of omega fatty acids are also thrown into the mix. To support your dog's joint health as he or she ages, glucosamine and chondroitin are added as well.
2. Taste of the Wild Grain-Free High Protein Natural Dry Dog Food
Taste of the Wild dog food is designed to imitate the natural diet of wild dogs. It has a lot of protein to provide your pooch with a complex profile of amino acids.
In total, protein makes up 25% of the recipe. For this particular flavor, most of that protein comes from salmon. A blend of plant-based ingredients like tomatoes, blueberries, dried chicory root, and sweet potatoes are added. They have a wealth of antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals.
The sweet potatoes ensure that the food is absorbed slowly so that your dog can stay energized throughout the day.
3. Wellness Complete Health Natural Dry Large Breed Dog Food, Chicken & Rice
Specially-formulated for large dog breeds like the Doberman, this food from Wellness can provide your canine companion with a balanced diet.
It contains four different animal protein sources like deboned chicken and salmon meal. What you won't find is any animal by-products, unnecessary fillers, or artificial preservatives. It includes many supplementary ingredients and natural vegetables to give your dog all the nutrients they need to thrive.
The kibble also takes on a larger shape to fit your dog's mouth and keep their teeth clean.
4. CANIDAE All Life Stages Dry Dog Food for Puppies, Adults & Seniors
If you're looking for a dog food that can support your pup's health throughout their life, this option from Canidae may be for you. It's suitable for puppies, adult dogs, and seniors.
The multi-protein formula ensures that your dog is getting the muscle support they require. High-quality sources like chicken meal, lamb meal, and turkey meal are all at the top of the ingredients list.
Probiotics are included as well for better digestive health. To keep your dogs skin and coat supple, salmon oil is also added.
5. AvoDerm Natural Dog Food For Adults
From AvoDerm is this simple formula that contains only the essentials. it doesn't contain any potentially harmful fillers like corn, wheat, or soy. It doesn't have any artificial colors, flavors, or preservatives either.
Instead, it's filled with beneficial ingredients like chicken meal and brown rice. Protein makes up approximately 23% of the recipe. The formula also contains unique ingredients like avocado. This antioxidant is chock-full of omega fatty acids, vitamins, and nutrients.
Overall, the food is balanced and can help your dog achieve a stronger immune system and healthier coat.
The dog food market is flooded with many options that range from very cheap to incredibly expensive. While it may be tempting to go with the most affordable option you find, it's important to remember that this food will affect your dog's overall health.
To get a better understanding of the quality of a product, you need to look at the ingredients list. Manufacturers include a list of ingredients and important nutritional information on the package. Here are some things to look for when you're shopping.
As with any dog, protein is a must-have. Dogs of any size need protein to stay healthy. High-quality sources are chock-full of amino acids that work to develop and support their muscles. As a good rule of thumb, your dog's diet should consist of at least 25% protein. With most dog breeds, a higher percentage is always best. However, Dobermans are a bit different.
The breed is very susceptible to kidney disease. Too much protein can agitate the condition and make it worse. You have to be a bit more wary about how much protein your Doberman is eating. It's a fine line between giving them the amount they need to stay healthy and giving them too much.
It's important that you consult with your vet when you make the switch to a new food. They'll be able to perform tests and determine if their protein supply is beneficial or detrimental.
When it comes to the actual source of protein, animal meat is always best. Manufacturers can use everything from deboned chicken to bison. These sources are filled with beneficial amino acids and essential nutrients.
The next best thing would be a meat meal. Meals are simply ground up animal meat. They can also benefit your dog as long as the meat used is identified. For example, ingredients like chicken meal or fish meal are great. Vague ingredients that are simply labeled as "meat meal" are not.
Despite their negative reputations in human food, some fats are good for dogs. They add loads of flavor into the food and can benefit your dog's overall skin health. Dobermans need significantly more fat than other breeds. This is because they have short hair that can easily dry out and become itchy.
Good fats like salmon oil and flaxseed oil can remedy this. They are filled with Omega 3 and Omega 6 fatty acids that work to keep the skin supple. These ingredients have also been known to improve circulation for better overall heart health.
Carbohydrates are a great source of fiber and energy. About a quarter of your dog's diet should be made up of carbohydrates. However, you need to find a food that utilizes complex carbohydrates.
Dobermans are prone to suffering from hypoglycemia. This condition is a result of high blood sugar and can lead to diabetes.
The best way to prevent it is to give your pup carbohydrates that take a bit longer to break down and absorb into the body. Complex carbohydrates include things like sweet potatoes, peas, and many legumes.
They'll help to provide a constant supply of energy throughout the day, avoid blood sugar spikes, and prevent energy crashes.
Vitamins and Minerals
Fruits and vegetables contain a bevy of vitamins and minerals that can do wonders to your pup's overall health. They can help strengthen the immune system so that your dog can fight off diseases.
Some also provide specific benefits. For example, blueberries and kale contain antioxidants that will promote better cellular health.
One important mineral that your Doberman needs is calcium. A diet with about 2% is ideal. This mineral is responsible for bone development and strength. It can be found in blueberries and rhubarb. Many manufacturers also add calcium supplements into the mix.
Things to Avoid
Now that you know what to look for in a dog food, you need to know what to avoid. While the dog food industry has evolved throughout history to improve ingredients and provide your pup with a balanced diet, many manufacturers still include ingredients that could cause potential harm.
Corn, Wheat, and Soy
These ingredients are typically used as carbohydrates or fillers in cheaper foods to keep the costs of production down. Unfortunately, your dog's body just isn't made to process them. They can cause gastrointestinal upsets.
It can cause gas buildup and lead to bloat. Furthermore, these ingredients don't have much nutritional content. They're essentially empty calories.
Meat byproducts often come from questionable sources. They may be leftovers from a slaughterhouse. That's why these ingredients never have a specific animal labeled.
The problem with byproducts is that they don't have the same nutritional value as pure meat sources. Because byproducts come from unidentified animals, some may also carry diseases that can affect your dog. It's best to avoid them altogether.
Additives are often used to alter the way the food looks, smells, or tastes. In most cases, they're completely unnecessary. Natural alternatives exist and are much healthier for your dog.
Instead of artificial flavors, go with a food that has fat. Instead of a chemical preservative, find a recipe that contains natural tocopherol.
Your canine companion's body isn't meant to process chemicals, so its recommended that you steer clear of them and stick with natural ingredients instead.
Food Related Health Issues in Dobermans
Dobermans are susceptible to many health issues. While some can't be avoided, there are others that have a direct correlation with the food that they eat. You can avoid these problems or alleviate symptoms by sticking with a healthy diet.
This condition prevents your dog's thyroid glands from producing hormones they need to stay healthy. As a result, dogs with hypothyroidism gain weight very easily. Even with regular exercise, weight gain will occur. To combat this, a diet filled with simple ingredients is best.
Processed fillers and simple carbs will only agitate the problem. If your dog has the condition, you need to stick with a formula that's comprised of mainly meat, fruits, and vegetables.
While excessive bloating is uncomfortable to humans, it can be deadly to dogs. Bloat, also known as Gastric Dilation Volvulus, is a life and death matter. When bloat occurs, the stomach will inflate and twist. This can create breathing problems and lead to death in a relatively short period of time.
The best way to avoid this is to prevent your dog from eating too much food in a short period of time. Split up their meals into smaller portions and force your pooch to relax for about 30 minutes after eating.
You can also avoid fillers like corn, wheat, or soy. They're known to cause excessive gas buildup.
This condition is usually diagnosed later on in life. It affects the spinal cord and may cause your dog to lose their balance and fall down. It occurs because of poor bone development as a puppy. To avoid it, you need to provide your dog with a high-quality food from the beginning.
You should switch to an adult formula at about six months of weight and monitor their growth. Wobbler's Syndrome typically happens when a dog grows too fast or gains weight at a young age.