St. Bernards have been bred for hundreds of years as guardian and search and rescue dogs in the Alps of Switzerland, France and Italy. This giant breed was crossed with Mastiffs in recent times to create the huge and amazing St. Bernards of today. As adults, St. Bernards weigh in at 140 to over 200 pounds at the height of 25-27 inches. That’s a very big dog!
If you have lots of room, a tolerance for drool and the ability to deal with the fact that the average lifespan of these patient, friendly dogs is only about 10 years, you might want to own a St. Bernard. In spite of their laid back nature and sweet but sometimes stubborn personality, the Saint can be a high maintenance dog in terms of care and feeding.
St. Bernard Eating Habits
St. Bernards grow at an amazing rate and due to their giant size, eat a lot. They are prone to obesity so regular exercise and proper feeding is crucial to having a healthy Saint. It’s not recommended that you free feed your St. Bernard, but portion the food for two daily feedings for adult Saints, and three times daily for pups. A high quality dog food is crucial to proper weight maintenance and overall good health.
St. Bernards age rapidly and are considered senior dogs by age 7. Great attention must be paid to meeting the proper nutritional needs for each stage of life to keep your Saint healthy. We’re going to take a look at the best high quality dog foods for your St. Bernard.
Best St.Bernard Dog Food
Because of their rapid growth and massive size, St. Bernards fall into the “Giant” breed category when it comes to pet food. It’s recommended that you feed premium,high quality feeds that are formulated for large and giant breeds for best results.We’re going to take a look at five of these brands and review them for you here
Formulated for dogs over 50 pounds. Contains the balanced nutrition your St. Bernard needs with special additives such as antioxidants to guard against cancer causing free radicals, and Glucosamine for joint support.
The vitamin and mineral blend contains calcium and phosphorus for bone health and the Omega fatty acids and pre and probiotics give just the right amount of healthy fats for a soft , good-looking coat on your Saint. The giant breed formula is free of artificial colors and flavors and contains no corn.
The crude protein is right at 25% which is the perfect amount to maintain your giant breed dog. Owners report that their dogs do well and seem to enjoy the taste for the most part. Some add a little canned food or fish oils to the dry food to make it a bit more moist and more palatable for their Saint.
Your mature St. Bernard has a moderate energy level and a large appetite. Precise Holistic Complete has a triple meat formula that is specially designed for your giant breed mature St. Bernard dog. The Precise Holistic Complete formula is made with real meat and contains pre and probiotics and is balanced with Omega fats that your giant breed Saint needs to maintain a healthy weight with lean muscle.
This recipe is made with L-Carnitine for increased energy and stamina. The Precise brand contains beneficial supplements for balanced nutrition and natural antioxidants for immune support. This formula is great for dogs with sensitive digestion and allergies from grains.
Dogs who suffer from loose stools, gas or constipation tend to do very well on the Precise Holistic Complete meat formula.The fruit and vegetables in the recipe provide a healthy alternative to other brands containing corn and wheat. The fish meal and dried egg contribute to a healthy skin and coat for your Saint.
Blue Buffalo Life Protection Large Breed Adult Chicken and Brown Rice is one of the most popular large breed feeds. Manufactured with fruits, vegetables , meat and whole grains. Blue Buffalo adds their patented LifeSource Bits which are a balance of nutrients and vitamins to increase the amount of nutrition per serving for your St. Bernard.
The additions of these vitamin bits contribute to strong bones and teeth as well as Omega fats for a healthy skin and coat. Glucosamine and Chondroitin protect joint health as large breeds such as yours are prone to hip and elbow problems later in life. This formula will help your St. Bernard develop lean muscle and maintain a healthy weight to prevent undue stress on those joints.Great for dogs with sensitive digestion and food allergies.
Owners report that flaky , itchy skin has cleared up since switching to this recipe and that their St. Bernards are thriving. Even though the protein percentage is a bit high, the antioxidants and Omega fats along with the joint support sold them on Blue Buffalo.
Made with red meat and grain-free. What more could you want from your large breed dog food recipe? Beef, Bison, Venison and Lamb recipe recreates your dog’s wild ancestral diet. The fruits and veggies contained in this formula are great for dogs with sensitive stomachs or are prone to allergies.
Additions of Omega fats, pre and probiotics and joint support from the Glucosamine and Chondroitin make this a great choice for balanced nutrition for your St. Bernard. The Blue Wilderness Rocky Mountain Red Meat Recipe is a perfect alternative to a raw food diet for your Saint. Owners report that switching to Blue Wilderness Red Meat Large Breed Grain Free has cleared up allergies and indigestion in their large breed dogs.
The dogs love the taste and never leave until the bowl is licked clean. Some owners report a bad breath issue and still others say that their dogs smelled less “doggy” when they switched to Blue Wilderness Rocky Mountain Recipe Red Meat Large Breed Grain Free dry dog food.
Optimal protein levels and healthy fat and carbs make this a great choice for your St. Bernard. This Large Breed recipe is formulated to keep your Saint at the proper weight for long life and good health and Wellness. Mixed tocopherols for good eye health and Omega fats for healthy skin and coat.
The addition of Glucosamine and Chondroitin protect your giant dog’s joints and guard against problems later in life. Contains Calcium and Phosphorus for strong and healthy bones. Your St. Bernard will love the taste of the Wellness Large Breed Complete Health Deboned Chicken and Brown Rice Recipe. If your dog has had problems with loose or soft stools, this formula is recommended.
Give your St. Bernard the proper portioning according to his weight and with moderate exercise he should maintain a healthy weight and a good energy level into his senior years.
Best Puppy Food For St. Bernards
St. Bernard puppies grow fast! They can weigh 30-40 pounds at 3 months of age and put on 5 pounds per week until they reach maturity. Proper nutrition is even more crucial for giant breeds like your St. Bernard. Everything is growing at such a rapid rate that if they don’t have the right amounts of protein and balanced nutrition with vitamins and minerals, it can set them up for major health issues later in life.
You’ll be feeding your St. Bernard puppy 4-8 cups of high quality food daily. Sometimes their food intake will even exceed that of an adult Saint because they’re growing so fast. Feed your St. Bernard pup 3 times a day until he’s 6 months old then decrease to twice per day. Monitor his growth and weight constantly to ensure he stays at the proper weight.
Here are three recommended large and giant puppy foods to choose for your little Saint.
Your St. Bernard Puppy needs all the building blocks of growth. Feeding him a premium dog food now will give him the right start in life. Eagle Pack Large Breed Puppy formula has appropriate caloric level combined with balanced mineral levels to support his rapid growth.
Proper nutrition will give him healthy muscles and skeleton and help to mitigate problems such as hip and elbow dysplasia in adulthood. DHA supports brain and eye development. The lamb and chicken meal provides lean muscle and great taste that your Saint will devour. Pay close attention to portion size as St. Bernards can tend towards obesity which creates additional health problems later in life.
The antioxidants contained in Eagle Pack Large and Giant Breed Puppy formula will protect your St. Bernard pup’s fragile immune system and guard against disease.
St. Bernards can suffer from a few kinds of digestive issues. The better you feed him as a pup, the less chance you’ll have of your Saint suffering from digestive problems as he grows into adulthood. The lamb meal and oatmeal recipe dry dog food from Holistic Select is formulated especially for large and giant breed pups.
The lamb delivers the protein he needs for lean muscles growth while the probiotic added aid in digestion and create a healthy environment in the puppy’s gut. This helps create firm,healthy stool and an all around healthy puppy. Be sure to follow the label directions for feeding your St. Bernard pup, and monitor his weight and growth to ensure that he’s maintaining a healthy weight.
You may have to exceed label portions at times of rapid growth to keep up with your puppy’s growing appetite. Follow your veterinarian’s instructions regarding what’s healthy for your Saint.
Your St. Bernard pup will be active and growing rapidly at 4 months. It’s important that they grow at the proper rate to give them skeletal strength and healthy musculature to hold the size and weight they will be required to carry as adult dogs. Precise Naturals Large and Giant Breed Puppy Formula has moderate levels of protein and the perfect ratio of Calcium to Phosphorus to ensure the proper rate of growth.
Precise Naturals formula is made with highly digestible ingredients plus the vitamins and minerals your Saint needs as the building blocks for a healthy life. Probiotics and flax aid in healthy digestion and the chicken meal and healthy whole grains give your St. Bernard pup the proper nutrition he needs.
This product has no corn , wheat or soy to trigger allergies and the addition of Glucosamine and Chondroitin make for healthy joints.
Ingredients to know:
The main things to look for in your premium pet foods are proteins( Crude protein should be 25%), especially meat protein. Fresh meat and fish should be in the top 3 ingredients. You should also be looking for vegetables and additions of fats such as Omega 3s. All of these contribute to a balanced diet for your St. Bernard. You want to avoid any kind of by-product, preservatives, or artificial colors and flavors. Too many fillers and not enough real ingredients equal poor nutrition for your dog.
Common Health Problems:
As with any large or giant breed dog, your St. Bernard is prone to joint problems including hip and elbow dysplasia, arthritis and osteosarcoma (bone cancers). It is absolutely crucial that you feed him with the proper premium diet in order for him to live a healthy, happy and pain free life.Look for the feeds that contain Glucosamine and Chondroitin. These additives will support joint health both in your St. Bernard puppy and as an adult dog.
Since the lifespan of these gentle giants is only about ten years, you need to keep them at a healthy weight , give them proper exercise and a healthy diet to make the most out of their lifetime.