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Discussion Starter #1
We've had our pups for one week now. We got them when they were 5 weeks old and they've been eating a lot!

We are trying to find out how much puppy food to give them but all the advice we've found so far starts at 8 weeks old.

The PETCO staff recommended we supplement their wet food with canned milk formula for one week which we did.

Right now we are feeding them 4 times a day, about 1/2 can each per feeding. This seems like a lot of food but they scarf each meal down like it's their last one.

Should we be serving less per meal? Maybe they will eat all their food no matter how large their serving so we need to better control the amount?

Thanks for any advice you can provide.
 

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If they are growing and maintaining a healthy body condition (healthy lean, not too chubby or skinny) then what you are feeding is fine. It's more important to feed them to a healthy body weight than worry about the exact measurement of the portions.
 

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If they are growing and maintaining a healthy body condition (healthy lean, not too chubby or skinny) then what you are feeding is fine. It's more important to feed them to a healthy body weight than worry about the exact measurement of the portions.
Yup, this exactly. While being overweight is bad for any dog, an overweight Dane/GSD puppy could develop severe issues because of their incredible growth and the pressure the extra weight puts on their joints.
 

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At six weeks I wouldn't worry about overweight. 14 weeks, yes. Not six weeks. They are growing so fast at that age that any fat they manage to put on will quickly be used in metabolism and growth. You want a bit of a buffer on the little guys cause a bout of diarrhea or other illness can wipe them out if they don't have some reserves. I would be moving to dry puppy formula, moistened with puppy formula milk, egg, yoghurt, or other good things.. . . or a well thought through raw diet. Canned food is mostly water and gets expensive. It makes you think you are feeding a lot when you really aren't. Feed them as much as they want to eat.

Five weeks is pretty young? Why so young? Was the mother having problems? Have you been keeping up on worming?
 

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At six weeks I wouldn't worry about overweight. 14 weeks, yes. Not six weeks. They are growing so fast at that age that any fat they manage to put on will quickly be used in metabolism and growth. You want a bit of a buffer on the little guys cause a bout of diarrhea or other illness can wipe them out if they don't have some reserves. I would be moving to dry puppy formula, moistened with puppy formula milk, egg, yoghurt, or other good things.. . . or a well thought through raw diet. Canned food is mostly water and gets expensive. It makes you think you are feeding a lot when you really aren't. Feed them as much as they want to eat.

Five weeks is pretty young? Why so young? Was the mother having problems? Have you been keeping up on worming?
Feeding Great Danes too much as puppies and providing them with excess calcium/calories can cause problems. Overweight or not, feeding them as much as they can eat can be detrimental, unless their calcium and caloric intake is carefully calculated and maintained. Regular puppy food has too much calcium for giant breed puppies, so overfeeding regular puppy food can cause long term problems and skeletal issues.

I think OP started a different thread and mentioned that extenuating circumstances caused the pups to be separated from their mother before 8 weeks of age.
 

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Feeding Great Danes too much as puppies and providing them with excess calcium/calories can cause problems. Overweight or not, feeding them as much as they can eat can be detrimental, unless their calcium and caloric intake is carefully calculated and maintained. Regular puppy food has too much calcium for giant breed puppies, so overfeeding regular puppy food can cause long term problems and skeletal issues.

I think OP started a different thread and mentioned that extenuating circumstances caused the pups to be separated from their mother before 8 weeks of age.
At six weeks? Do you think mamma dog carefully monitors calcium and caloric intake?? To my knowledge there has only been one study that seriously tested questions of diet and exercise for puppies from large breeds. It concluded that environment was at least as important as diet. See http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/03/120326112842.htm

It's probably more important to keep your puppies away from stairs, but make sure they get a chance to run around and play.

There are lots of old wives tales regarding dogs. Some of them true, but by no means all. I'd love to see any evidence that allowing very young pups to eat as much as they like is deterimental to their health.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thanks everyone for your input -- and thanks to Hiareth for remembering my initial post where I explained why we have the puppies already.

We started giving the worming medicine -- and yes, they both had/have worms :(

Their initial vet appointment is tomorrow so hopefully we'll get caught up with some of the issues we've had so ar.

Thank you again for your help -- it's nice to have a place to come to and ask questions.
 

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She doesn't have to. The food SHE feeds them has been specifically made for her puppies.
Indeed :)

It is also very important that OP makes sure the puppies don't run up and down the stairs or exercise excessively. However, I've already recommended in the initial thread that OP created that they should do some giant breed research in case their pups start developing and looking like they're going to be in excess of 100 lbs, so I didn't feel the need to rehash that.
 
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