Answer: Hi Kianna, It's great that you've decided to do research before your puppy arrives. That's the best way to give them a great start. Rottweilers are a mastiff-like breed that grows extremely fast. Because of this, they must be fed a balanced raw diet for a larger breed pup. The best way to ensure he grows with no risk of metabolic disease is to feed as follows:
- 4 days per week chicken with bone (ground or whole carcass) with veggies.
- 3 days per week beef/buffalo or elk with veggies.
- 1 to 2 of these red meat days should include a raw meaty bone (knuckles and necks are best for large breeds).
- Be sure to give him 3000mg of fish oil every day while he is growing. Start with 1000mg and work up to 3000mg over a 2 week period.
Large breed puppies should be fed 200-250g/10lbs of body weight. When they are 8-10 weeks, they may not be able to eat quite that much but will soon after. These dogs grow rapidly for approximately 1 year and need a lot of food during this time. When growth begins to slow, food can be reduced to 100-150g/10lbs of body weight. You want to judge the best amount for your pup by keeping a close eye on his appearance and the feel of your puppy's body. You should not be able to see the ribs but you should be able to feel each rib easily if you touch the pup. If it is hard to feel the ribs, he is most likely a bit too heavy. If you can see the ribs too clearly, he isn't getting enough. Also be aware of energy level, stools, water consumption, and urination. Any signs of lethargy, excessive thirst & urination, diarrhea, or constipation should be noted and addressed immediately. It's helpful to keep a weight log as well and weigh your puppy weekly during the first year.
Keep in mind that these wonderful puppies are prone to metabolic bone disease (hip/elbow dysplasia), anemia, and other blood disorders. The raw diet is your best insurance against these problems. These diseases are partially genetic but mostly present themselves when pups are not fed properly.
Note: The above is only intended as general advice. Specific dietary requirements will vary with each animal's individual needs. So, pet owners are advised to not underfeed or overfeed their animals and to consult a holistic veterinarian for specific dietary requirements for their pet.