Knowing how much to feed the Great Pyrenees is one of the most important things owners of this breed should possess.
Although challenging, it’s essential to come up with a proper feeding plan for the Great Pyrenees. This is done to avoid the risk of diseases and ensure that the dog gets all the nutrition it needs to grow strong and healthy.
Apart from this, since the Great Pyrenees is considered a giant breed, knowing the proper way to feed it is crucial in supporting its growth, development, and maintenance based on its size.
If you want to know the recommended feeding plan for the Great Pyrenees and learn about the best dog foods and more, this article covers it all. Keep reading this ultimate feeding guide until the end!
Great Pyrenees Feeding Chart by Age: How Much to Feed Your Great Pyrenees?
The daily quantity of food a Great Pyrenees needs will depend primarily on its age.
For instance, a Great Pyrenees puppy needs to have one to four cups of food daily. Whereas adults generally need four to seven cups and seniors only require four to six cups of daily food intake.
This amount can be adjusted depending on a number of factors, such as the Great Pyrenees’ weight, lifestyle, metabolism, and activity level.
Keep in mind that it’s not only the amount of food that changes with these factors but also their nutritional needs to ensure a well-balanced diet.
To know exactly how much food and nutrients you should give your Great Pyrenees, it’s always a good idea to consult with your veterinarian.
Meanwhile, the recommended daily food quantity and nutrients per life stage of a Great Pyrenees will be discussed in the succeeding sections.
Great Pyrenees Puppy Feeding Chart (2 to 12 months)
A newborn Great Pyrenees puppy should not be fed real food until its first few weeks. It merely relies on breastfeeding and gets all the nutrition it needs from the mother’s milk to support its growth and development.
However, if the Great Pyrenees puppy cannot be breastfed for some reason, it’s advised to use a puppy milk replacer for proper puppy feeding.
At three to four weeks, weaning of Great Pyrenees puppies can be started. During this phase, they are slowly introduced to solid food.
It’s a great start to combine three parts liquid and one part solid food, increasing gradually.
When pups turn two months old, they should be able to eat regular puppy food that contains high calories, protein, and fats.
These nutrients support the development of their muscles, bones, skin, coat, and immune system.
The table below shows the recommended amount of food and nutrients to feed your Great Pyrenees puppy:
|Daily Food Quantity
|2 – 4 months
|1 – 3
|532 – 1,312
|25 – 27%
|12 – 15%
|5 – 6 months
|2 – 3
|1,389 – 1,866
|25 – 27%
|12 – 15%
|7 – 12 months
|3 – 4
|1,724 – 2,529
|25 – 27%
|12 – 15%
The serving size increases as they age since a lot of bodily changes happen during their first year. Hence, feeding them well-balanced puppy food is critical in ensuring they grow strong and healthy.
Adult Great Pyrenees Feeding Chart (1 to 5 years)
As a large breed, the Great Pyrenees tends to mature slowly. It only reaches its full size at around 18 to 24 months.
Nevertheless, the Great Pyrenees breed is already considered an adult upon turning one year old.
With this, it’s recommended to transition your Great Pyrenees into regular adult dog food. This ensures that their food will be nutritionally fitted for them as adults.
The table below shows the recommended adult Great Pyrenees feeding chart:
|Daily Food Quantity
|1 – 5 years
|4 – 7
|2,206 – 2,529
|21 – 25%
|8 – 10%
Adult dog food usually contains less protein and fats compared to puppy food. However, the amount listed in the chart is based solely on the average weight and typical activity level of a Great Pyrenees.
Several factors play a role in the actual amount of food and nutrients you should feed your pooch, such as size, gender, health, activity level, and whether or not they are spayed or neutered.
Calories, fats, and carbohydrates provide energy to the body. Too much of these might result in obesity in dogs, which causes a lot of health issues. Because of this, it’s important only to give them what their body requires.
On the other hand, the right amount of these nutrients is beneficial to your dog’s diet. Particularly, fats aid in skin and coat formation, while carbs are rich in fiber that helps in digestion.
Senior Great Pyrenees Feeding Chart (6 years and above)
The Great Pyrenees reaches its senior stage at around six years. During this time, the dog’s activity level decreases. Hence, its caloric intake needs to be lessened to prevent the pooch from gaining extra weight.
Additionally, its metabolism slows down as they age, so the amount of food you give should also be reduced.
The recommended daily food and nutrients intake for a senior Great Pyrenees is shown in the chart below:
|Daily Food Quantity
|6 years and above
|4 – 6
|1,308 – 1,962
|28 – 32%
Generally, a senior Great Pyrenees needs to have lesser fats but higher protein intake to help maintain muscle mass.
Omega fatty acids should also help in supporting their mobility and maintaining healthy skin and coat even with their old age.
Like humans, a senior Great Pyrenees tends to experience different health issues that come with age.
With this, it’s important to give them a well-balanced, healthy diet and even supplements like fish oil to boost their immune system and prevent the occurrence of some age-related illnesses.
Great Pyrenees Feeding Frequency: How Often Should You Feed Your Great Pyrenees?
Normally, Great Pyrenees puppies need to be fed three to four times daily, depending on their age. On the other hand, adult and senior Great Pyrenees should be given two meals a day.
It’s important to split the suggested daily food quantity into several meals daily. Otherwise, your Great Pyrenees might eat too much food in one go, which may result in bloat.
Additionally, younger pups should be fed more frequently than adult ones since they have smaller stomachs.
Free-feeding, which is usually done with puppies, is not a good idea as doing this will potentially result in overfeeding, causing them to become overweight.
Refer to the table below for the recommended feeding frequency for your Great Pyrenees based on age:
|2 – 3 months
|Four times a day
|4 – 12 months
|Three times a day
|1 year and above
|Twice a day
Two to three months old Great Pyrenees pups should be fed four times a day. This frequency is gradually decreased as your dog ages. By the time it turns one year old, feeding your dog twice a day is recommended.
This frequency is maintained until its senior year to keep your Great Pyrenees’ energy level consistent throughout the day.
Optimal Feeding Times for Great Pyrenees
The feeding schedule for Great Pyrenees puppies must be scattered throughout the day at equal intervals of four hours. For older pups, this is reduced to six hours. Upon entering adulthood, a 12-hour interval or once in the morning and once in the evening will suffice.
It’s important for the Great Pyrenees to have a feeding schedule to prevent underfeeding and overfeeding.
For reference, the table below shows the recommended feeding times for the Great Pyrenees.
|Optimal Feeding Times
|2 – 3 months
|7:00 a.m., 11:00 a.m., 3:00 p.m., and 7:00 p.m.
|4 – 12 months
|7:00 a.m., 1:00 p.m., and 7:00 p.m.
|1 year and above
|7:00 a.m. and 7:00 p.m.
It’s necessary to come up with a strict feeding schedule you can follow every day. By doing this, your Great Pyrenees will develop a habit. Hence, it will be easier for you to notice any changes in your dog’s appetite.
Aside from this, housebreaking will be a lot simple as the feeding schedule allows you to regulate when your dog needs to go potty.
Best Dog Foods for Great Pyrenees
Nutritious and high-quality food is essential for the Great Pyrenees’ overall health. Hence, it’s important for Great Pyrenees owners to choose the best ones for their dogs.
Here’s a list of the best dog food choices that you can incorporate into your Great Pyrenees diet:
- Dry Food or Kibble: Dry food is the most affordable and widely available dog food in the market. It doesn’t expire quickly, so it’s easier to store and prepare than other dog foods. Additionally, kibble is good for your Great Pyrenees’ dental health since its crunchy texture helps reduce plaque and tartar buildup.
- Canned Wet Food: Canned wet food can be easily bought in any pet store, although it’s more costly than kibble. It has more water content compared to dry food, making its consistency softer. Thus, it makes a better choice for Great Pyrenees that can’t chew well due to dental issues or old age.
- Biologically Approved Raw Food (BARF) Diet: BARF Diet includes feeding your Great Pyrenees uncooked food, such as raw meat, organ meat, ground bones, fruits, and raw vegetables. Raw feeding helps improve your dog’s overall health as it promotes lower exposure to preservatives found in commercially prepared food.
- Homemade Food: A home-cooked diet is a better option for Great Pyrenees owners who want to control the ingredients included in their dog’s food. This can be as simple as a boiled chicken. However, it’s important to ensure you follow a vet-approved homemade dog food recipe for a healthy, safe, and well-balanced meal.
If you want to cook homemade food for your senior Great Pyrenees, check out this vet-approved recipe for senior dogs:
Additionally, when buying commercially prepared dog foods for your Great Pyrenees, always remember to check the ingredients on the label to ensure that it doesn’t contain components that are bad for your pooch.
Furthermore, before deciding on what dog food you should give your Great Pyrenees, consult with your veterinarian so they can assess what’s best for your dog’s health.
Foods to Avoid Feeding Your Great Pyrenees
Many pet owners are so used to feeding their dogs some human food. However, not all human foods can be eaten by dogs. Some are dangerous to them, causing poisoning and leading to life-threatening diseases.
Some examples of food that are toxic to dogs include chocolate for its theobromine content, too salty foods that may cause sodium ion poisoning, and macadamia nuts that lead to macadamia nut toxicity.
Moreover, as much as onion and garlic are part of almost all human dishes, herbs that belong to the allium family are toxic to your furry friends.
These vegetables contain a compound called N-propyl disulfide that causes a breakdown of red blood cells, resulting in anemia in dogs.
It’s also dangerous for the Great Pyrenees to eat sugar-free foods. These usually contain a chemical called xylitol as a sugar substitute. Dogs that ingest this may experience seizures and liver failure.
If your Great Pyrenees accidentally ingested any of these foods, watch out for any symptoms that include diarrhea, vomiting, and lethargy. Immediately call your veterinarian or the pet poison helpline if this happens.
How to Transition Your Great Pyrenees to a New Food
In owning a Great Pyrenees, there are times that you have to change their diet due to a number of reasons, such as transitioning the pooch from puppy food to adult food and some health problems.
With this, it’s important to avoid abrupt changes as they may cause vomiting, diarrhea, or refusal to eat.
Switching your dog to a new food requires a seven-day process to avoid these gastrointestinal upsets from happening.
Ideally, give your Great Pyrenees a mix of three parts old food and one part new food. Then, this amount is gradually increased over the course of seven days. On the last day, your pet should have switched to 100% new food.
The table below shows the summary of how to transition your Great Pyrenees from the old food to a new food:
|1 – 2
|3 – 4
|5 – 6
Observe your dog for any reaction to the new food during the transition period. Some may reject the change of diet and experience stomach upset.
If this happens, slow down the process and extend it for a couple of days to give your pooch more time to adjust and get accustomed to the new food.
Moreover, other dogs may display signs of food allergies to the new food introduced. When this occurs, consult with your veterinarian immediately.
Feeding an Overweight Great Pyrenees
Due to their large appetites, the Great Pyrenees has the potential to become overweight and eventually lead to obesity.
Being overweight happens when the Great Pyrenees is free-fed, provided with too many treats, or given too much food that is not appropriate for its activity level.
Aside from exceeding their ideal weight, you may check this guide to see if the Great Pyrenees is overweight.
If you suspect that your pet is on the heavy side, you need to make adjustments to its feeding plan.
To help your dog lose weight, it’s advised to cut back on the amount of food you give to it. Opt for a high-fiber, low-calorie, and low-fat diet so your pooch can still feel full while eating less.
It’s also better to partner this diet with the right amount of exercise to help with the Great Pyrenees’ weight loss and overall health.
However, it’s still best to consult with your veterinarian for a proper assessment of your dog’s weight. Additionally, you can ask for the vet’s advice on what your pooch should eat and how much exercise it needs.
Frequently Asked Questions
Why Is My Great Pyrenees Not Eating?
There are several reasons why your Great Pyrenees refuses to eat, such as medical problems, sudden change of diet and routine, food boredom, and age. Some of these are minor issues, while others are more serious.
If the refusal to eat persists for several days and is accompanied by other negative signs like lethargy, vomiting, and diarrhea, call your vet immediately.
Do Great Pyrenees Eat a Lot?
Despite being a large breed, the Great Pyrenees eats less than what is expected of their size. This pup doesn’t require a lot of food as it has a slow metabolism.
With this, it’s important for Great Pyrenees owners to watch their dog’s food intake and avoid giving them more than the recommended daily amount. Otherwise, problems like weight gain may arise.
Can Great Pyrenees Eat Bones?
The Great Pyrenees can eat bones as long as you only provide raw or large ones. Bones are a good source of minerals and nutrients. Chewing on it makes the dog’s teeth and jaw grow strong.
However, some bones may pose a health risk to your Great Pyrenees. For instance, rib bones can cause obstruction to your dog’s airway or even intestines.
To avoid this issue, make sure your pooch receives supervision when eating bones. It’s also advised to read the safety precautions on feeding bones before giving some to your Great Pyrenees.
Can Great Pyrenees Be Vegetarians?
The Great Pyrenees can survive on a vegetarian diet. However, there are some nutritional benefits that cannot be provided by only eating fruits and vegetables.
With this, it’s better to pair this diet with supplements to fulfill all nutrients they need. Coordinate with your veterinarian for any advice regarding this.
Coming up with a proper feeding plan for your Great Pyrenees is rewarding when done correctly.
You need to have the dedication to following the right amount of daily food and nutrient intake, the feeding schedule, and the perfect diet.
Aside from these, you also need to consider the do’s and don’ts in feeding your Great Pyrenees to avoid underfeeding and overfeeding, food allergies and poisoning, and stomach upset.
By following a proper feeding plan, you can ensure that your Great Pyrenees grows strong and healthy.
Further, remember to always consult with your veterinarian first for any changes you ought to make in your dog’s diet.
Hopefully, reading this guide has given you an idea of how much to feed your Great Pyrenees. Share your thoughts about this in the comment section below!