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So ashamed that I've let him get this fat!

(33 Posts)
Peppatina Sun 14-Feb-16 15:04:10

This is my four year old crossbreed (jack Russell and chuahuahua).

The titles says it all really. I know he'd been pinching my mum's dogs food when he stayed there (a healthy weight Dalmatian) and had noticed last year that he had started to get porky but figured he'd lose it with a bit of extra exercise.

Well, he hasn't. He came back from the kennels yesterday (holiday) and I actually looked at him properly blush

He weighs 8.1kg.

What should I do? He has a half hour walk every day which I thought would be enough. He has two cups of dried food and I admitted to myself in the past that I've been far too free in giving him treats ( dog treats, meat from our dinners etc.) but I stopped that last year when I thought he was putting on weight.

Any advice?

mimiasovitch Sun 14-Feb-16 15:08:01

Well, food wise would say no treats, ever. Is half an hour enough exercise though? I don't know about chihuahuas, but most jack Russell's can walk for miles. Our 16 year old dog (a Scottish terrier) was having a half an hour walk daily, so I imagine a 4 year old could do with at least twice that.

MajesticSeaFlapFlap Sun 14-Feb-16 15:08:30

Ask your vet hiw much he should be eating. Stick to it, no treats whatsoever.

Half an hour is not enough, id do two 45 mins walks a day as a bare minimum.

Toomuch2young Sun 14-Feb-16 15:10:47

Weigh out his food the night before and that is all he is allowed for the whole day.
Make him work for his food, scatter it, use it for training, use it as treats, just give small meals in his bowls.
Give him nothing else apart from the weighed out measure of food.
Increase his exercise gradually, add in hills and interval training of a min walking and a min running to build up his fitness.
Don't let anyone else in the family feed him treats.
Measure around his neck, waist and ribcage with a tape measure and weigh and measure him weekly.
If he hasn't lost weight in 4 weeks, gradually change his food to a weight loss food such as Hills Metabolic.
Good luck.

Floralnomad Sun 14-Feb-16 15:11:56

More exercise definitely , does he go off lead because 30 mins walking is no where near enough for a JRT / JRTX . Do you actually weigh the food ?

notarehearsal Sun 14-Feb-16 15:12:32

You have my sympathies. I have a Norfolk Terrier who has got fat like this a good too many times, I also felt deeply ashamed. Basically he's food obsessed and I have to give him only one handful of his dried food a day only, not a single treat, he whines often for more food and I just have to stick with it. It's tough, my other norfolk isn't at all like it. Basically even though he's always acting as if he's starving, I know he's not as he's never been thin

Peppatina Sun 14-Feb-16 15:20:36

Thank you all.

I can definitely up the exercise, I am surprised I thought that was enough because he is small, the vet never mentioned otherwise when he asked how much exercise he did. Feel such an idiot.

He is due for his booster soon so will book him in and ask exactly how much to feed him, any recommendations on what amount I should feed him in the meantime?

He is a food fiend but I'm actually really quite worried about his health so will remind everyone (my mum!) about giving him snacks.

TrionicLettuce Sun 14-Feb-16 15:22:47

How big a cup are you using to measure the food? Unless it's a tiny one that sounds like a massive amount of food for such a small dog. Regardless of what the feeding guidelines say, if he's overweight then he's getting too much food. Don't be worried about feeding less than the recommended amount.

Weigh the food, don't measure it by eye and stick to his daily ration religiously. I agree with those suggesting making him work for it. I'd go so far as to ditch his bowl completely and feed him the amount you give as a meal from a treat ball. This one and this one are really good, as are the Kong Wobbler and the Nina Ottosson Dog Pyramid.

MrsJayy Sun 14-Feb-16 15:28:30

The vet should be able to let you weigh him weekly and give you diet advice weigh his food out the bag shoul tell you how much for his type/size get a an average weight from the vet and cut back on human food and treats

Peppatina Sun 14-Feb-16 15:28:57

Thanks Trionic I have just ordered one of those.

It's an average sized cup, most certainly not very small blush

snowymountaintops Sun 14-Feb-16 15:34:06

It's the food that counts more than the exercise. I honestly don't think he needs too much more exercise than you're giving him as he's such a small dog as long as he's off lead and bounding about a fair bit.

RandomMess Sun 14-Feb-16 15:35:54

Usually on the back of the packet it gives you the daily ration for the weight of the dog.

So you look for 6-8kgs weight of dog and then feed him the lower end of what it says.

My JRT weighs 6.3 kilos (she is a very slim bodied long legged type) and her food allowance is 100 grams. In the winter I actually reduce it to around 90 as she gets fewer walks. She is very busy in the house though racing around to visit everyone etc.

I think that is probably less than a cup of food for the whole day - that is erm James Wellbeloved I think it is? She loves her food too.

RandomMess Sun 14-Feb-16 15:39:17

Does he enjoy playing fetch with a ball? More of that.

Our dog has a slow feeder bowl so that her meals last longer - she was neglected as puppy so will scavenge and eat very very quickly sad

Given the option our JRT would happily be out walking/running/chasing for up to 4 hours per day she's totally happily cuddled up asleep on the sofa or out and about!

TheCrowFromBelow Sun 14-Feb-16 15:45:49

What weight should he be? DDog got very fat (7kg overweight) and we cut out all treats and reduced food by 10% each week until he was noticeably losing weight, then kept it just above that,

it took around 3 - 4 months but he is now at a good weight (36 kg). We weigh his food at each meal and take a handful out for treats and rewards.

He eats from a bowl like
this which slows him down and means food takes more than 30 secs to eat!

He is fed at the lowest recommend amount (he's on Millie's at the moment but I am not 100% sure it's right for him but that's another story).

He is a horrific thief and unbelievably greedy but we've managed to slowly change habits and he will now happily chew a Kong instead of rawhide. We find that keeping him mentally stimulated helps as well.

Peppatina Sun 14-Feb-16 15:48:26

Unfortunately he doesn't get many opportunities to go off lead unless we've gone away somewhere. We've had a few incidences of aggressive dogs on walks where we live and they seem to be out all of the time! They are never on leads and I've had to scoop him up a few times. So he just stays on it the majority of the time.

Yes actually reading the feeding guidelines online now, I've been way over feeding him.

hellhasnofurylikeahungrywoman Sun 14-Feb-16 15:48:43

Try feeding at 1.5-2% of his ideal body weight, if it doesn't satisfy add some lightly cooked veg to bulk it out. I feed my two at 3 and 3.5% of their body weights as I struggle the other way but I always, always weigh and never guess at amounts.

SmellOfPythonInTheMorning Sun 14-Feb-16 15:49:43

My pug got fat last year and we had to cut his food by quite a bit. It was heartbreaking as he LOVES eating, but as he lost more and more weight he gained more energy. We also started taking him on two hour-long walks a day (well, the dog walker did) where he chased other dogs and played. He's now trim and quite fit and frankly much happier.

ShotgunNotDoingThePans Sun 14-Feb-16 15:52:01

Crow that bowl looks like a good idea - but our BT has raw food - anyone know of a similar option suitable for mush?

TheCrowFromBelow Sun 14-Feb-16 15:56:56

You could weigh what he usually has, and start slowly reducing it, by 10% every 2 days or so. We were advised not to try to get the weight off too quickly as that can also cause health problems.

The nurses at our vets offer weight loss advice. Might be worth talking to your practice?

TrionicLettuce Sun 14-Feb-16 15:59:19

Shotgun Kyjen Slo Bowls might be suitable?

Peppa You could try him on a long line so he's got a bit more freedom but you can still reel him in when necessary. There's also a FB page which lists secure fields available for hire, it might be worth checking if there's anywhere near you so he can have some off lead time.

TheCrowFromBelow Sun 14-Feb-16 16:02:04

Shotgun it might work, DDog can get rice and salmon out of his. He has to push it to the edge a small bit at a time.

I got ours from pets corner.

hellhasnofurylikeahungrywoman Sun 14-Feb-16 16:06:38


I feed raw from one of the bowls that Crow linked too, works a treat. (I feed Nurtiment, Natural Instinct or a complete mince)

MrsJayy Sun 14-Feb-16 16:06:54

Tbf its probably all the treats rather than the dog food that has added the weight

ShotgunNotDoingThePans Sun 14-Feb-16 16:54:20

Thanks all - have ordered the mini flower one - looks great!

ShotgunNotDoingThePans Sun 14-Feb-16 16:59:11

I've discovered frozen veg can fob off my permanently 'starving' creature. Broccoli, spinach, kale are better than carrots, peas, sweetcorn (the ones she likes of course), as they're less starchy.
Also, you can get one-calorie wasabi crackers which are basically a kind of Japanese sea vegetable - they also do the trick. I know I'm a rubbish owner and she should be cold turkey blush.

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