How to help a 7 year old dog lose weight?

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  1. JRickert profile image63
    JRickertposted 6 years ago

    How to help a 7 year old dog lose weight?

    Alright, so I have an overweight Brittany Spaniel. She's a hunting dog and runs around nonstop in our sizable back yard. Even though she runs around all day, she is still very fat. We only feed her breakfast and dinner (lamb meal- medium size dog) and not very much at that, but she keeps gaining weight. Her stubby tail has even grown a layer of fat around it!!

    She also gets very little treats and maybe one or two scraps a week.

    How can I help her lose weight? It's bad for her heart and joints.

  2. Relationshipc profile image87
    Relationshipcposted 6 years ago

    She is either being fed on the side (you may not know about it) or she has a medical condition. So find the culprit or take her into a vet (I recommend a holistic vet who will look at all sides of her health). No dog will gain that much weight without being overfed - especially when she runs around all day. I've owned dogs all my life, trained with a vet tech, worked at doggy daycare's and kennels, and I have never heard of a dog that gained weight even though they were eating right and were active.

    1. JRickert profile image63
      JRickertposted 6 years agoin reply to this

      Thank you for the very thorough answer.

  3. gail641 profile image66
    gail641posted 6 years ago

    Go to a vet that you can trust, so that the vet can try and find out what's underneath your dog's gaining weight. Maybe the vet can recommend treatment to help your dog, or maybe even get a 2nd opinion.

  4. loverslovenegi165 profile image60
    loverslovenegi165posted 6 years ago

    hi dear  dont worry he is 7 year old and often it happen with dog on this age.just care of them and try to light food for him.
       but to gain weight is not possible for him .

  5. rmcrayne profile image96
    rmcrayneposted 6 years ago

    Get a thyroid panel, not just TSH.  And educate yourself on thyroid disease.  MDs are not very savvy on thyroid disease and what optimal levels for TSH, T4 & T3 should be, so I’d guess vets may under-diagnose and under-treat as well. 

    I go to a holistic vet and she gave me Standard Process Canine Thyroid Support, which is a powder I sprinkle over my spaniel’s and doxie’s food.  She also recommended a vegetable diet, with a very small amount of premium dog food for nutrients.  I just cook vegetables, like green beans, broccoli, cauliflower, yellow squash, and zucchini.  They both love it.  The doxie, who was being treated for back pain, lost about 0.4 to 0.5 lbs a week.  It was surprisingly easy.

  6. agilitymach profile image96
    agilitymachposted 6 years ago

    I also agree.  The first thing to do is to visit your vet for blood work and to check the thyroid.  Unfortunately, right now many breeders are ignoring thyroid issues in their lines thinking, "It's only a pill a day to fix it."  We are seeing more and more dogs with thyroid issues, and thus weight issues.

    If all is good, then the issue is simple.  She is getting too much to eat.  In the US, we often think we are feeding a small amount of food when that "small amount" is really a ton.  Our view of food is very skewed. You say your dog "only gets fed at breakfast and dinner."  I would omit the word "only" and feel it suggests a mindset here.  Your dog SHOULD be fed twice a day - and that isn't "only."  smile

    I have a sheltie who gets over 1/16th a cup of food twice a day.  He is in excellent shape and competes in agility.  He obviously then gets tons of exercise, and I even do extra work outs for him since he competes in an athletic event.  Yet, he gets a very small amount of food.

    I suspect the real issue here is that your idea of a "small" amount is flat too much.  If the blood work is good, then the dog is getting too many calories somewhere.

    Make sure your dog is on a healthy diet.  If you feed kibble, make sure it is a premium kibble.  Also look into the low fat kibbles available.  Discuss these options with your vet.  I'd completely cut out the table scraps.  My dogs don't get anything off of my table.  That's my food - not theirs.

    I teach agility and often have to tell my students their dogs are overweight.  And BIG kudos to you for knowing this weight is so very bad for your dog's structure. big_smile  My students always say, "But he hardly gets ANYTHING to eat."  Then, as we start discussing, I find out how much "anything" is.  Usually, the dog is getting a TON of food based on it's size.  As I tell my students, dogs can't get in the car, drive to McDonalds and get a Big Mac and extra large fries.  The calories are coming from some where!!  I had one student who insisted she didn't overfeed.  Upon talking with her, I had to agree.  The vet report came back good too.  She finally discovered her mother, who lived down the road from her, was driving home from eating breakfast out everyday and was throwing hundreds of calories in leftover breakfast over the fence for her dog to eat!!  When this stopped, the weight came off.

    Also, I find back yard dogs do not get the exercise their owners think usually.  Add in some purposeful exercise too. smile

    1. DrMark1961 profile image98
      DrMark1961posted 6 years agoin reply to this

      Great response. Most dog owners think they are not feeding much when they are giving way too much, and then they think running around the back yard counts as exercise.


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