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I made a post before about how my gsd puppy was underweight ( he still is but is catching up I think), but for this post I was wondering when should I switch to adult food? Especially since he is on the smaller side should I continue to feed puppy food? I feed him currently orijen large breed puppy food and he gets about 5 cups of that a day now. He will be 7 months January 9th and he weighs around 50 lbs and he is still intact. Any responses appreciated thank you!
 

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I never feed puppy food. That said, of my dogs owned as an adult, 7 months is the youngest I’ve adopted - he went straight on to an all life stages kibble.

At the very least, I’d wait until your dog was at a healthy weight, then switch.
 

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Yes. Large breed puppies like GSDs can technically be switched over to adult food as early as 4 months.

Your puppy will get as big as his genetics dictate he will get. No amount of extra feeding will change that. All extra feeding would do is speed up how fast he grows, which is not necessarily something you want.
 

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I never feed puppy food from the start. In the wild, young animals eat the same food as adults after weaning.

You don't want to underfeed because a growing puppy needs proper nutrition for proper bone and joint growth as well as a healthy immune system and essential fats for brain health. Prolonged under feeding can actually permanently stunt a puppy's growth.

Personally, I find German Shepherds to be very hard gainers, especially if kept too thin as a puppy. This can lead to an overly lean adult which is linked to bloat.

The best that you can do IMO for healthy joints is to either keep the dog intact or not neutering prior to 2 years of age. The other thing I like to recommend for joint health is appropriate exercise on natural surfaces doing things that the dog would do naturally such as swimming, jumping over logs, running up and down hills in the woods, etc.
 

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I'm another who doesn't feed puppy kibble they start off with "all life stage" at my house....the small dog-large dog versions of puppy kibble is a little gimmicky IMO....as long as he's not under or over weight keep doing what you're doing....change to a adult version... same brand (as long as he likes this brand) when he's finished growing....the best thing you're doing IMO opinion as far as getting him to grow into the dog he was intended to be is not neutering him..... he needs the hormones while he's maturing for his bones-joints and muscles to develop...
 

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I was told by my vet when they were pups you can feed large breed puppy food or large breed adult dog food. I would just make sure the dog food is large breed and the calcium and phosphorous amounts are suited to your growing pup in puppy fooD-amounts over or under required amount can effect joints in many founded studies.
 
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