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Very skinny dog, need to fatten him up

(14 Posts)
somebodythatiusedtoknow Tue 09-Dec-14 14:25:27

My dog is naturally slim but has slipped into underweight and bony territory recently.
The nurse at the vets agrees I need to fatten him up but in the past he has had a sensitive stomach if I overfeed.

I feel very guilty that he has ended up this way.

Any tips on fatty, proteiny extras I could give him on top of his normal food (good quality dry and still on puppy food as he is 10 months).

CarbeDiem Tue 09-Dec-14 15:14:11

Cottage cheese - my rescue pup is still quite sickly and still mostly on a home made diet and she loves it, her weight is going up nicely.

Natural yogurt.

Try just a tablespoon at first to make sure there's no upset tummy as some dogs are lactose intolerant so stick to the natural unsweetened versions of both.

Scrambled or hard boiled eggs.

I also make her home made treats - her favourite.... I boil liver (She's not fussy it can be pigs or chicken) then I bake it until quite dry on the outside then thinly slice it. I bag portions and freeze it.
She goes crazy for it - it's like puppy crack smile

Banana - she enjoys it fresh and dried given mostly as treats.

LoathsomeDrab Tue 09-Dec-14 15:35:08

How many times a day are you feeding him? Splitting his food ration into more meals and slightly increasing the amount given in each meal might help negate the effects of overfeeding.

Maybe have a look at different foods as well, I know Millies Wolfheart do several mixes which are specifically designed for dogs that struggle to keep weight on.

There's also 'satin balls'. I've never tried them but a lot of doggy people absolutely swear by them for getting weight on skinny dogs. There are loads of recipes for them online.

My breeder friend absolutely swears by raw non-lean mince for getting weight on skinny pups.

somebodythatiusedtoknow Tue 09-Dec-14 16:20:51


I will look at these ideas.

Prefer pre-made food really as we don't have meat ourselves.
He is having two meals a day and we dropped lunch a few months ago but I have now added it back in with a mini meal then. I'll also up his main meal quantities. Once or twice we have accidentally given him a double dinner and his poop has been fine with that.

I was following the quantities on the dry food packets and our trainer's advice but maybe he has a fast metabolism. He also gets quite frantic on walks/ when he sees people and runs very fast so maybe he just burns it off faster than average.

daisydotandgertie Tue 09-Dec-14 16:23:03

Most dogs are skinny at 10 months. I'd not worry too much about it.

What are you currently feeding? What breed is he?

CarbeDiem Tue 09-Dec-14 16:24:51

Prefer pre-made food really as we don't have meat ourselves

For the love of Christ please don't attempt the liver thing then, I'm a meat eater and the smell makes me want to barf smile

Chrismoosemama Tue 09-Dec-14 16:51:25

I'd agree with daisydot. 10 months is around the age that a lot of breeds get that gangly, scrawny teenage look, as they've grown in size, but not yet developed the adult muscle tone that will give them a more filled out look.

I have Lurchers, so they're naturally svelte anyway, but my younger lad tends towards bony, despite eating like a horse and my vet always says she'd rather a dog was slightly skinny than fat, especially when they're still juvenile and their bones and joints are developing.

You could add in some healthy fats. We're veggie too, but mine get a tin of sardines in tomato sauce regularly, they love it and it's full of healthy fats. Perhaps he could have sardines for his lunch?

Eggs are another good one. Given raw with the shell on (better done outside) or boiled/poached/scrambled.

I would usually advise lamb breast to put weight on a dog, but if you're not keen on feeding actual meat then that's out.

What brand of dried food is he on?

Chrismoosemama Tue 09-Dec-14 16:52:28

Oh - and I'd second not doing anything with liver if you're a sensitive vegetarian. I make liver-cake for mine, but not without a lot of retching along the way. blush

somebodythatiusedtoknow Tue 09-Dec-14 17:16:34

He has a mix of Barking Heads fish and Wellbeloved lamb/ rice.
I've just ordered some Millie's Wolfheart Endurance mix - just a small quantity to try and see if his stomach is ok with it.

In the meantime I'll do egg and can give him some cooked lamb etc.
I have got some duck strips too that he likes.

Happy to give him meat and I eat it when out but the rest of the family don't so I don't cook it and don't want raw meat knocking about the house.

The vet nurse did seem to think it wasn't just normal 10 month old skinniness but that might explain why he has gone from pretty thin to too skinny then.

Chrismoosemama Tue 09-Dec-14 17:30:44

Barking Heads is good stuff. Not so keen on Wellbeloved's myself, but it's still streaks ahead of a lot of foods.

Is he a breed that typically has a lean body and/or very light coat? If he is, he could be burning off extra calories due to the drop in temperature. In which case you may just need to up his intake to get him back on track and perhaps get him a coat for the coldest months of the year.

When ,y younger boy started to look even leaner than usual I knew it was time to buy him a warm winter coat, as he'd outgrown the one he had last year. Sure enough, he's put the weight back on, without me adjusting his diet, so was obviously just working hard to stay warm.

somebodythatiusedtoknow Tue 09-Dec-14 17:42:24

Oh good point about the cold! He has a coat but I haven't used it much.

I'm definitely going to up the food though but hope that it doesn't come out as dodgy poo...

Floralnomad Tue 09-Dec-14 18:29:52

Mine has Barking Heads lamb ( bad hair day) and lilys Kitchen wet ( tray) , I find if I feed him the recommended quantity of Barking Heads he puts weight on so perhaps switch from the fish to the lamb variety . Why do you feed a mix of 2 kibbles ?

SimoneAdriaan Tue 09-Dec-14 18:36:05

Tripe! its great for underweight dogs. I don't like meat and buy these from pets at home so I just defrost and give raw, no touching meat for me. I also second cottage cheese, and going for lamb kibbles rather than chicken/fish, and sticking to just one kibble.

Chrismoosemama Tue 09-Dec-14 22:23:28

My first thought before I opened the thread was tripe - but despite knowing how great it is for dogs, I just can't stomach it, so mine are sadly deprived. blush

Definitely one of the best options for adding a few pounds to an underweight dog though.

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