Best Dog Food For Dobermans?

puppy eating doberman foodJust like humans need proper nutrition to be healthy and happy, so too do our dogs.

But the decision on what to feed our dogs can be a confusing one. Grocery stores usually have a whole aisle dedicated to pet food with a large assortment of brands. The fact that there lacks regulations in pet food labeling only makes things harder for consumers. But with the very real concern of contaminated food from bacteria and chemicals, we need to put some effort into educating ourselves for the sake of our pet’s well-being.

This topic is especially close to my heart since I had a beautiful doberman die young of cancer. To this day, I wonder if it was my fault for feeding her a cheap dog food. I didn’t know better back then and there weren’t many options for healthy dog food. Luckily today things are different, we have some good dog food companies and information easily found about raw food diets. (FYI I’m currently feeding the Acana grain free dog food.)

So what doberman food should we buy?

Ideally we would want to feed our dogs home-made, human-grade, raw meat meals but this is just not practical for most people. As much as I’d like to, I don’t feed raw.

Here are some common reasons people don’t feed raw.

  • more expensive
  • need to ensure it’s “nutritionally balanced”
  • can be more time-consuming
  • the risk of salmonella
  • MESSY! Who wants raw chicken being dumped on the kitchen floor?
  • small freezer space
  • and not practical if the dog is boarded or travels

A new option and alternative to raw food is dehydrated dog food like The Honest Kitchen.

Dog food sold at the grocery store is usually garbage.

Good dog food now exists, but depending on where you live, you might have to do some searching. If you’re going to feed a dry dog food, find a good quality kibble food and supplement it with other “real food” goodies to ensure your dog is getting a “balanced” diet. It also makes things more interesting for your dog.

When looking for a good dog food, you want to avoid kibbles high in grains (corn, flour, etc) and choose one with a meat or meat meal in the first three ingredients.  Also, look that the label says “meat” and not ” by-product”.  (But realize that not all by-products are bad. Dogs in the wild would eat most of an animal. It’s the non-digestible stuff that is bad, like hooves or hair.)

I’ll repeat this since it’s the most important thing to consider: You want meat listed in the first 3 ingredients. Find a company or farmer you can trust that uses quality meat, not diseased animals. And preferably from human-grade, grass-fed or free-range animals. Dogs are carnivores and need a high protein diet. A  To help you compare different dog food brands, you can read our previous post for more tips.

Boost the nutrition and flavour of a boring dry dog food.canned sardines added to dry dog food for extra nutrition and supplement

  • Add chicken broth, bone broth or natural gravy to dry kibble. This adds needed moisture, but avoid broths with lots of sugar, salt, spices or preservatives. Extra moisture is especially important if your dog doesn’t drink much water.
  • Sprinkle some parmesan cheese on top.
  • Add low-fat plain yogurt, kefir or sour cream for probiotics.
  • Add a teaspoon or two (depending on your dog’s size) of flax seed oil or fish oil to the kibble (omega-3 acids)
  • My dogs favorite, add a can of salmon or sardines in water to the dry kibble. They start whining as soon as I open the can.

Don’t forget if you have a fast-gulping eater, get them a food dish that makes them work a bit. Dobermans are susceptible to deadly bloat, so take this seriously.

Buy them a good Slow Feeding Dish. I love mine, it’s stainless-steel with an anti-skid bottom and I can put it in dishwasher.

As for dog treats, if you can’t find a product that has organic, human-grade ingredients then try a home-made recipe. Dried liver treats are easy to make and dogs love them. Bake it in the oven and you have a cheap and nutritious dog treat for your doberman. But if you hate cooking, an easy alternative is to give your dog a vegetable or fruit treats like apple slices or green beans. Ideally you want to give protein treats instead of high carb/grain, store-bought cookies.

Instead of raw hides that may have preservatives, are bleached, and have artificial flavours and colors, ask a butcher for bones, chicken necks are great. To kill any surface bacteria, you can freeze them first or you can submerge the bones in boiling water for about 30 seconds, just long enough to kill the bacteria. Remember that cooking bones makes them easier to splinter so avoid giving your dog cooked bones.

Beware hard bones and antler chews!

If you can’t bend it or wack it on your own knee without hurting, it’s probably too hard for your dog’s teeth.  Dogs love beef marrow bones, but they can chip your dogs teeth. Once he’s chewed the meat off the bone, throw it out! Don’t risk a tooth fracture. In the wild, dogs wouldn’t eat a large heavy animal like a cow, their teeth are meant for smaller prey. Again don’t risk your dog breaking a tooth. The dental vet bill will hurt your wallet and make you cry, seriously.

A good alternative for recreational chewing are Bully Pizzle sticks. These are great to keep dogs busy chewing and give you some quiet time.dpg food for dobermans tips

Lastly, know which foods to never give your dog. Some foods to avoid include: chocolate, onions, macadamia nuts, grapes/raisins, soy, citrus and the sugar xylitol.

I don’t think anyone would recommend vegetarian diets for dogs. Domestic dogs are omnivores who favour meat. In the wild, dogs naturally eat meat, bones, vegetables, fruits and any grains present in the stomach of the dead animal. You should aim to give your dog a diet similar to what their wild family relatives eat.

Also don’t worry too much about whether your dog likes his food. Compared to humans, who have about 9000 taste buds, dogs only have about 1700 taste buds. They shouldn’t be picky eaters like we are.  But of course, their sense of smell is better than humans, so try to make their food smell interesting. The stickier the better. Sardines smell great to dogs.

In tomorrow’s post, I’ll provide you with guidelines to find good quality dog food at the store for your doberman.

Doberman food Guide


  1. Papaslater said:

    We fed our champion pedigreed Dobe named Kaiser 1 large scoop of SCIENCE DIET at dinner time for his whole life and never had to take him to the vet or deal with any of those nasty problems others are talking about.

    September 12, 2015
    • Jaki said:

      I’m going to compare your dog to humans that eat poorly and are still healthy, maybe it’s because they have a low stress, happy life, with lots of exercise and less exposure to toxic things like pollution or chemicals.
      You must be doing something right in your dog’s life :)

      September 12, 2015
  2. peter hALL said:

    hOur 18 month girl is a fussy eater, she was started on Royal Canin (UK), and then a combination of sketchers and Royal Canin, but still she doesn’t want it. She looks good and has a shiny coat. I’m sure if we gave her wet food she would eat it but is it as good as dry food? Peter.

    August 3, 2015
  3. Bernadette said:

    I guess it seems right to feed the best food for your pup to grow old n older and healthy!
    i put her now on Earthborn dry bison food (holistic:-) mixed w Natural choice lamb n rice, chunks in gravy! i know absolutely nothing abt what kind of natural as if you don’t want Walmart food its always natural, holistic, no fillers… supposed to be first ingredient listed on container must be the protein w %.
    Anyway, seems to me now she just being a gourmand! won’t eat dry food w no gravy! now realized maybe its because she eats toooo much!
    so portion will go down! her butt is getting big for a 10 ms old! but seems she likes lamb a lot! so far so good!

    February 17, 2015
  4. Alex said:

    My black and tan boy will be coming up on 3 years old now. He has zero problems with flatulence. I’m not sure if it is the strict diet he has been on since I got him or if I just really lucked out. Anyways, he eats Simply Nourish grain-free, high protein, chicken and turkey dry food. It runs me $55 for a 24 lb bag. I will not feed my dog food that I can buy at WalMart. But that is just me. I read an article once that said, “You can feed your dog the cheapest food in the aisle and its not going to kill him. But, you will shorten his life, resulting in you losing 3-5 years with your mate.” And that’s all I needed to hear. I prefer to have my handsome boy for every day I can.

    January 20, 2015
  5. Bernadette said:

    my baby will be 4 months old in a few days; she already had surgery because of extreme intussusception, where the small intestine fold inside itself. Diarrhea is big concern as she can have hookworms or coccidiasis or coccidia. Please have vet doing a fecal test!! Mine is on Iams per breeder feeding and going great now; not much flatulence! Poop is solid!! and weight is back!! As prior post said, whatever woiks for your dog! the surgeon told us that Iams is a great food, puppy large breed! Even the vet was fine with Iams. Doberman seems to have a susceptible digestive system! We want to teach her to swim and it seems that it will be great excercise as they have no fat and will sink even with their webbed paws, so more work so more energy needed!!

    August 22, 2014
  6. Christopher Blake said:

    I have had my doberman puppies since they were 4 weeks old, now they are 13 weeks old. They keep slipping to a not so solid stool. Their stool has only been solid for a week out of the 9 weeks that I have had them. It is getting very hard. We fed them Blue Buffalo Wildress Large Breed Puppy food. It has the protein, etc that they need. I do not think it is the food, but it could be. It is getting really frustrating and it is hard to house break a puppy that has dirrhea to a real loose stool all the time. Does anyone have any suggestions. We have been to the vet 4 times, at first they had Colmeidia (where the mother did not keep them very clean as babies)….now she just does not know. She wants to put them on this RX puppy food that is $100 for a 24lb, ouch! That is out of budget. I need some help. Anyone got any suggestions? Thank you so much!

    July 8, 2014
  7. terry heck said:

    getting a 7 week old red male Doberman in july just want to start it on the best puppy food I can get for him any suggestions?

    June 6, 2014
  8. annie said:

    I have had six dobes and they all had a terrible gas problem. I found a dog food that was the best. I can no longer find this food. It is called Joy. Anyone else ever use this? I have moved down south and am waiting for my new pup. So I am once again looking for this.

    September 8, 2013
  9. Antonio said:

    Best diet is the diet that works best for your dog. Dogs have been domesticated over 10,000 years and during that time they have eaten, survived, thrived, and scavenged on things beyond most contemporary thinking. If your dog does well on $80 a bag Orijen go for it, if $22 Purina Dog Chow works buy that. Don’t be deceived by all the marketing and hype surrounding dogs and pet food. Genetics are by and far the most important thing, so if your that concerned about your dog, make sure your buying or getting a pup from a reliable breeder, shelter etc, that can give you accurate results regarding the genetics, health problems etc of your dog. This will give you a good indication of the life expetancy and growth expectancy long term of your dog.

    June 24, 2013
  10. chandrahas said:

    HI my name is chandrahas i`ve bought a baby doberman 2 months old we got it just 4 days back n its not eating anything from then on and it`s not even drinking water,milk i`ve tried all kinds of puppy dog foods and i`m now that he`ll starve if he doesn`t eat anything pls help!!!!!!!!!!

    April 11, 2013
  11. katherine said:

    My Doberman is 5 months an weigh 45 pounds he eats blue call of the wild for any breed .. At 5 months hes very tall an stocky the food did wonders for his body.

    March 21, 2013
  12. Benson said:

    Hi all, I just got my blue doberman and my plan is to feed him ORIJEN LARGE PUPPY dog food. I’m advised this is the best food for blue dobby so i decided to buy this. Is it true that this dog food is not good because of high protien?

    October 20, 2012
  13. Jewel Villalta said:

    My dobie pup has big bones and the vet wasn’t happy with her uneven growth, she put her on the Barf diet. I can add raw meats to her diet such as chicken necks, thighs, beef. Never cook any meat that has bones in it! Within one week my 3 months old puppy gain 7lb of muscle. Her hair is so shinny and her bowl movements are half the size of what they were. Barf food is expensive but when you start doing research on a raw food diet for dogs, you’ll find ways to save money on what you can buy from the grocery store to add to it.

    September 24, 2012
  14. jayakanth said:

    SURRAZ same problem mine also, having dober/shephered cross breed his age is 7 month old, looks like dobe. But the think is he is not growing taller, he is in normal height only, but brilliance and evrything is ok. So please share about your current position too, other people pls guide me.

    September 18, 2012
  15. surraz said:

    Heyy..! i have a dobe/shepherd, 7 months of age i rescued her from a guy who could’t take care of such a beautiful dog. she’s a bit cross of a dobe and German shepherd but she is mostly a dobe apart than her fur. she was really skinny when i got her but now she’s doing a lot better than before. i feed her twice a day (boiled chicken parts/eggs with flour/rcie) mostly, what made me curious is what really should i feed her? she seems happy but her body posture is not improving esp HEIGHT. please help me to help my dog.

    August 7, 2012
  16. Theresa said:

    We have a 4 year old king size Dobbie, we have always fed him(large breed) Eukanuba so he can get the right nutrients. We also add either a scoop of cottage cheese or hard boiled egg. He always gets chicken with kibble too!

    July 23, 2012
  17. Julie N. said:

    I want to know why in that poll there isn’t an option for the white doberman. This guide was helpful! I already put in some chicken broth but now I can mix it up with cheese! Thank you!

    May 29, 2012
  18. Chris said:

    I have a doberman dat gets staff infection for eating dog food. Anyone kno what i can give her? Is raw meat good for her?she on anti biotics but its not really doin much for her because of the dog food.

    April 27, 2012
  19. PJ said:

    We feed our three Dobes Natural Balance Limited Ingredient Diet. It’s got a very short list of ingredients (as the name indicates) and is grain-free and low on other allergens, which is important as one of our dogs is prone to allergies. It’s rather expensive ($45 for a 30lb bag) but good dog food is pricey – you’re paying for quality ingredients and lack of fillers and other unhealthy stuff. We also supplement with multivitamins and glucosamine. I know Dobe owners who prefer a raw meat diet, but that’s quite a bit more expensive. Maybe one day!

    February 7, 2012
  20. Abilash said:

    HI my name is abilash i`ve bought a baby doberman 2 months old we got it just 2 days back n its not eating anything from then on and it`s not even drinking water,milk i`ve tried all kinds of puppy dog foods and i`m now that he`ll starve if he doesn`t eat anything pls help!!!!!!!!!!

    December 11, 2011
    • Jaki said:

      if he’s not drinking you should take him to vet and ask breeder for help

      December 11, 2011
  21. Keava said:

    My dobe girl 11mths is very loose and flatulant, when we got her, she was on pedigree so I immediately weaned her to red mills mother and pup. This seemed to suit her but I was very aware that there was too much corn in the kibble. I now have her on purina beta large breed puppy, but I am looking for a new food as she is very flatulant and in the last few weeks she has gotten very loose. I had her on royal canine for 2 months but she was having terrible diorrea so I took her off it. I have always supplimented her diet with cod liver oil, vitamin e oil (high quality human consumption grade) and cooked lean beef, duck, chicken, etc, that we have left over from dinner, only the meat with no seasonings is put in with her food. She also eats way too fast and has almost choked a few times. I tried an anti bloat bowl but it didnt help, a friend told me to put a large clean rock in her bowl so she has to eat around it, iI tried that, but she tried to eat the rock and chipped a tooth. It’s gotten to the point that I have to put a small handfull of kibble on the ground for her to eat and space out her feeding over a few minites like so, can anyone help me with these problems as I am very worried about my girl?

    November 15, 2011
  22. Glenn said:

    Saxi boy loves his eggs,and it keeps his coat Slick…!

    October 15, 2011
  23. Manas said:

    Can a dog eat egg?is there any problem….

    October 15, 2011
    • Jaki said:

      yes, eggs are nutritious, but I would avoid raw eggs.

      October 15, 2011
  24. manas said:

    hello frds,
    plz help me i can’t able to stop the hair fall of my dog so tell the way to stop…………and food will good for him….. send ur usefull thought to me…………………….

    October 13, 2011
    • Jaki said:

      are you sure it’s not normal dog hair shedding??
      if not you should see a vet.

      October 13, 2011
  25. debojyoti said:

    my jimmy is six yrs old and he is very special to me and my family.a few days ago he was in a dying condition and we were puzzled.but mr.brojen roy has saved our jimmy and now he is free from i have come to know that dobs need light food and not the heavy.

    August 16, 2011
  26. Terry said:

    It really doesn’t matter what I give to Diva. She stinks up the house all the time but it’s worth it for her companionship.

    April 19, 2011
  27. Dorey and nemo said:

    We have two dobs that are huge. Best dogs ever. We use to have boxers and feed them Iams. Once they passed away we tried to switch it eukanouba, which by far is the best and probably the most expensive. You pay for what you get . We spend twoo hundred dollars on food per months but its well worth it.. After all, they would do anything for you, do treat them like gold because there the shortest living best friend, yet the longest memorie :)

    March 4, 2011
  28. Darren said:

    My doberman is 2 months old. Does non-cook chicken neck means raw chicken neck? Not even boil? Brisket seems doesn’t suit her. Is it ok if i mix the chicken with cooked rice?

    February 10, 2011
  29. Jaki said:

    Tricia my dog also had bad flatulence when he was younger. He was on good food as well. I haven’t changed his food and he seems to be having less stink bombs now that he’s older.
    Along with poor quality food, other causes for flatulence include eating to fast, swallowing air. Or it may be a side effect of medication or allergies. If you’re dog eats to fast you may wish to try one the special bowls for slowing them down.

    February 3, 2011
  30. Tricia Blount said:

    I brought my dobie home on Iams. He later starting having terrible flatulence. So I did some research and learned that Iams wasnt a great food and that I should by kibble with a meat as its first 2-3 ingredients and that even better avoid foods with corn, wheat etc. Well I tried that and I’m still buying it to give it more time, but it hasnt changed one bit. He is on Taste of the Wild, which is rated 5 stars and has been on it since Dec 10th. My thoughts on dog food is that it doesnt seem to matter. He actually favors my yorkies Purina One, so if this doesnt work, he may end up on that.

    January 27, 2011
  31. JOSE GOMEZ said:

    Tengo un Doberman de 2 anos, y quiero saber cual de estas marcas son las mas convenientes para su salud (Dow Chow, Eukanuba).


    December 30, 2010
  32. Nikki (Australia) said:

    I totally disagree with feeding any kind of commercially produced dog foods – especially for Dobes.

    The best diet you can feed a dobe is BARF based so please avoid the poisons that they mask ask “dog food” and take the time to feed a raw natural diet.

    As for putting bones into boiling water! DON’T!! Also Marrow & knuckle bones are the worst kind you can get – try beef brisket or lamb brisket , lamb neck, lamb chine bones, chicken frames and chicken necks – these bones can be consumed in their entirity and never splinter – they provide the best source of calcium for a growing pup and naturally keep the teeth clean. Bones do not need to be boiled at all as a dog as very strong acids and is not susceptable to food poisonings as humans – fresh human grade bones should be fine for any dog!

    As a dog owner it is your obligation to feed your dog the best you can – feeding a BARF diet doesn’t cost any more than those over priced packaged poisons and it offers you dog the best chance for a healthy life, it takes a little planning and preparation – but if you can’t be bothered to prepare you dogs food – you probably shouldn’t have a dog & are the type of person who only eats food they can get served at them in a drive-thru!

    Yes I am a BARF NAZI – but I love my dogs and want them to live happy healthy long lives.

    October 26, 2009
  33. rita said:

    me and my husband just got a baby doberman.
    we are reaserching and trying to find the best food for our baby, if you can please let me know what you think is good.
    i wouldnt mind cooking for my baby either, so if you know any good recipes for dobermands i would love to get some answers… thank you so much

    August 19, 2009

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