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how do i get my dog to gain weight?


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My 7 year old boxer Leeluu is soooo skinny. She looks dangerously emaciated. She is normally about 60lbs but is about 50 right now b/c she's so skinny.

 

In the warm months, this is normal, as she tends to lose her winter weight then. So this is normal and I'm used to it. But I'm not sure I've ever seen her so skinny that her bones are protruding and her collar is falling off her thin neck.

 

In the warm months, she adopts a supermodel diet: she doesn't eat, and when she does eat, she throws it up. I can get her to eat a meal every other day, if not every day, but it's significantly smaller than her normal portions b/c she throws it up if she eats her normal portion. She's always been a picky eater, just grazing instead of eating a full meal. So her food sits out for her all day and she eats when (if) she's ready.

 

Some days, her food will sit for 2 days. Then I put something in it (canned dog food, tuna, etc) to spike it and get her to eat. She'll eat some of it but if she eats too much, she'll puke it up.

 

The other night I fed her 2 chicken breasts and 3 slices of bread, cooked and cut up and mixed together. She ate it up and didn't throw up. The next day, she ate about one cup of dry dog food and a big scoop of canned food in warm water. She hasn't thrown that up yet. She hasn't eaten today b/c she hasn't wanted to.

 

This happens every year, to the point where the vet isn't alarmed. But she looks so unhealthy and it worries me.

 

How do I get her to gain weight?

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Do exactly what you did in your first post. Twice a day feed her a smaller portion of some type of protein and leave her dry food out for her to snack on if she wants to. She needs the protein and carbs to help her gain weight. Also, you can add veggies as well, like green beans and carrots. Also the canned chicken works good mixed with a small portion of her dry dog food. But, I'd go with something like the chicken breasts and bread. It's all protein and carb and will help to add pounds. Maybe you could do that once in the evening and give her half a can of wet dog food in the morning.

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I vaguely remember you saying that your dog doesn't like treats. Is this still the case? If so, then maybe you could keep trying different things. My dogs absolutely love peanut butter. It's high in calories, so we try to keep it to a minimum. But, if Leeluu liked it (most dogs do), then you could put a bit in with her meals.

 

I also had the problem with my dogs throwing up. They tend to do it when we switch what we're feeding them. Consistency is the key, according to the vet. If you do change their diet, then you need to do it very slowly and gradually mix it in.

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Her diet hasn't changed. I feed her the same food that she's been eating for a long time. It just happens in warm months. In cool/cold months, she'll not throw up once. It's the heat, mostly I think.

 

That's why I don't think it's her teeth b/c that's the only time it happens.

 

She's not treat motivated at all. She likes cheese but in small doses. I was giving her plain yogurt b/c she was on antibiotics a couple weeks ago, but she got tired of that and didn't want any anymore. She doesn't like peanut butter.

 

She really likes chicken. Sometimes I'll cook chicken and rice and mix in green beans. She likes that but I do it only about once a week b/c I don't want her to get dependent on that instead of eating her regular food.

 

She eats fine in cold months, but in warm months I feel so panicky b/c she's so skinny.

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Dexter was not eating for a while and was getting reeeally thin. It was embarrassing and scary. It got to the point where I would sit on the floor and hand feed him his little kibble like treats. I would hold up a piece to my mouth and go "mmm" then feed him. I've seen Victoria Stillwell do this.

 

It sounds like you're spoiling them, I know, but within a day or two he started eating more on his own and I never had to do it again.

 

 

I would give him a handful at a time, a few times a day. Just to get the food in his system.

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Try adding rice to her food. It is calm on their stomachs, so maybe she won't throw it up.

 

My terrier mix had digestive issues when he was young so I gave him rice to a) mellow out his own food and b) give him more variety so he wouldn't get sick of his food. Worked like a charm. Never threw up or had an accident since I started giving him rice.

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Strange dog

 

 

It probably won't make you feel any better, but she doesn't look too skinny from what I've seen in her pictures. Dogs are not supposed to carry a lot of weight and many people overfeed their dogs to the point where there has been a huge increase in diabetes. If the vet thinks she's healthy, then I wouldn't worry about her weight. Obviously you want to curb the puking though. I don't know what else to suggest there.

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I've tried that. Since she doesn't care for treats, she never fell for this!

 

Chicken is really the only thing that does it for her, but only if I put it in her bowl. Last night I tried handfeeding her a piece and she dropped it on the floor. I put it in her bowl and she ate it. Weird girls.

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The pictures I post of her are usually dated. I wish I could post a picture of her rgiht now but I'm on my phone and can't attach any. She reminds me of the dogs you see on animal cops on animal planet when they pick up emaciated dogs...I can just hear the vet saying "yes this dog is very emaciated and malnourished"

 

She does get rice a good but but she likes it only if it has chicken mixed in. Maybe I'll get some rice and water down some chicken stock to cook it in and then add some bread and stuff for the carbs.

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Yea apparently the vet isn't really worried since this happens every year. She'll be 7 in a couple weeks and I've had her her whole life so I know how normal it is for her but I haven't seen her this skinny before.

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Yea she was at the vet about 4 weeks ago. We talked about it but b/c this happens every year, there's no real cause for concern. Seriously, when it cools down, I can guarantee she'll plump up about 10 lbs or so.

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Ooh whole milk is a good idea. Would it make her sick? She has a sensitive stomach and I don't want her to get diarreah or anything too.

 

What is Bil Jac? Is that the doggie ice cream?

 

you know what? they make doggie ice cream but they also make dry food and the kind im talking about is the frozen.. but it is actually a soft food, found in the frozen foods section..... its in a yellow and red bag.... its usually a treat for my dog.. but it really does put on fat and they seem to like it... if all else fails i know they sell both dry and frozen at Pet supplies plus... if they have one near you... Leeluu may like it..... she is a skinny baby... i can see why you are worried... Hugs to Leeluu!!!!

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