Thursday, September 09, 2010

Duke's Weight Issues

Duke went with me to the vet today to pick up heartguard and frontline. While there I wanted to get him weighed because it had been away. Well, to my surprise (or not!) he currently weighs 116lbs. The past few times at the vet he has been around 110lbs, so it was a slight surprise to see him at 116lbs as I didn't think he had gained any weight. But I guess 5lb doesn't show up on a dog as much as it does on a person :).

But, while I would like to get him back down to about 110lb, I am not all that worried and this is why.

Duke has never been food motivated. He has never really like food or most treats. As a puppy he would sometimes go a whole day without eating. During his past 5 years I have tried every food out there to get him to eat. I tried the good and the bad, I didn't care, I just wanted him to eat. I was never able to find one that he would eat on a daily basis all the time. I also did free feeding because if I was to do scheduled feeding, he would never eat!

After 2.5 years ago, I finally realized how bad it was. Because he is so hairy and fluffy it is really hard to see what he looks like under that fur. I normally get him groomed professionally, so I also never saw him wet. But one day it was super nice out and for some reason I thought that Duke needed a bath. I took him into the back yard and got him all wet and was absolutely disgusted with what I saw. After my poor dog got all wet there was nothing left to him. I then realized that Duke's irregular eating was worse than what I thought. Shortly after this I got him weighed, he was at 70lbs. While he is pretty big now, subtract over 40lbs from that. I can only imagine what the groomers thought I was doing to my poor dog.

After this point, I made sure that he ate twice a day. If he wouldn't eat the kibble plain, then I would add canned or some other type of topper to it, so he would eat something. He didn't have to eat a full meal, just something.

6 months ago I decided that I was going to switch to raw. Luckily for me and for Duke, he really enjoys the raw diet and eats the entire meal, every time. So not only am I happy with the results of the raw, but am extremely happy that he is now eating twice a day!

I once had a vet tell me that Duke needed to lose a little weight (he said ideal is about 100-110lbs), while I do agree he does, I am absolutely terrified to cut back on his food because I do no want him to go back to what he was. I do realize that being over weight is not healthy for him either, so I will make a conscious effort to reduce how much he gets each day, we also could go on a few more walks as well.

Side story: We are at a new vet since we moved and they have only seen Piper. When I brought him in today the vet laughed as she said "I was so used to the little peanut".

Side story 2: Duke really is just a big dog. I've seen a few of this siblings (picture of his sister)(picture of his father) and he is just much larger!

Are you ok with your dog's weight?

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