What age to start watching weight?
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Thread: What age to start watching weight?

  1. #1
    Junior Member
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    Oct 2013
    Williamston, MI

    Default What age to start watching weight?

    At what age do you typically start paying attention to a pups body composition? My pup is almost 8 months and he doesn't over eat at all and doesn't get any "extras", but he's still a little soft and at 72lbs. He's not what I'd call overweight, the vet says he's perfect and he will fill out with muscle as he matures. But comparing him side by side with some of the other younger dogs at training days and what not, he definitely has a little more jiggle than a lot of them.

    Currently he's getting 3 cups of TOTW per day (1.5 cups in the am, 1.5 cups in the pm), which is the minimum suggested daily amount on the back of the bag. He gets tons of exercise and has no shortage of energy or endurance. But if at all possible I'd like to stay on top of his weight rather than have to slim him down later, but not at the risk of possibly impacting his nutritional needs at this point in his growth.

    So I'm not sure if it's anything I should even be concerned with at this point, should cut his food down, exercise him more, or something else?
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  3. #2
    Senior Member Wayne Nutt's Avatar
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    Jan 2010
    Ft. Worth, TX


    I don't think age is so important. Look at his body. Can you feel his ribs easily? While standing, look at him straight on. You should see no ribs. But when he turns his body 45-90 degrees you should see ribs on the opposite side.
    Wayne Nutt
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  4. #3
    Senior Member Cass's Avatar
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    Sep 2013
    ON, Canada


    A growing dog is better to be on the lean side. You don't want unnecessary stress on joints and ligaments when they are already going through tons of changes in growth

  5. #4
    Senior Member .44 magnum's Avatar
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    Feb 2014


    I like the age of 4 months old, but not scale weight, but being able to feel the ribs with light pressure using your fingertips yet not be able to see the ribs at rest.

    Excess body fat means your dog has processed the food, and had extra to store away. Internally you also can't see the fat in the abdomen, around the heart and various organs. That keeps the organs extra warm and may mean a lack of performance.

    Living in a extremely cold environment where a dog is outside in frigid weather that extra fat may be a good thing during winter, but those dogs use so much fat they stay thin.

    Don't know which TOTW you are feeding, but try to one that has more protein maybe. Protein builds firm strong muscle mass when training. Fat will provide much of the energy, and carbs for quick energy on the start of a days training. yet in the end if you feed too many calories the excess is stored as fat.

    Also each dog has a different metabolism, how fast they use up energy, so each dog one owns may need a different amount of food for optimum body condition.
    Last edited by .44 magnum; 04-15-2014 at 10:33 AM.
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  6. #5
    Senior Member Henlee's Avatar
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    Feb 2013


    There is a lot of variation on how the bodies hold their weight. I wouldn't worry about what everyone else's dog looks like. I would listen to your vet and let your dog grow as he needs to. It sounds like you are doing everything right as far as nutrition and exercise.
    "Its hard to win an argument with a smart person, but its damn near impossible to win an argument with a stupid person." - Bill Murray

  7. #6
    Senior Member fjwrt's Avatar
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    Aug 2008


    you should watch a pup's weight from the day you bring them home, always able to feel the ribs while petting the pup, but not seeing the ribs(although in a growing pup the fill out and lengthen out so you do see the ribs some times)
    proud member of AVMA for 20 years

  8. #7
    Senior Member
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    Mar 2010


    From the day I bring him home at 8 weeks

  9. #8
    Senior Member ks_hunting's Avatar
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    Dec 2013
    Southeast Kansas


    Something else you might consider is the body composition of the sire and dam. Were either of them a little on the "soft" side?

  10. #9
    Senior Member CodyC's Avatar
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    Jul 2013
    North Carolina


    Your dog may be doing the same thing mine did. At 8 months, my dog was a "full" well built dog that was not skinny (kind of what you are describing) and weighed 78-80 lbs. Then all of a sudden, he went through some changes, and turned lanky and skinny looking but remained the same weight (may have added 2-3 lbs) and has held at that weight for the past 4-5 months. He is now between 80-84 lbs and 13 months old and very lean and trim. I think it's just the way males are. I imagine it will be around 2 yrs old before they fill out.

  11. #10
    Senior Member Scott Krueger's Avatar
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    Jan 2008
    saginaw, mi


    that just seems big to me(which means nothing) at that age....given mine is 46lbs at 8 months and figured to weigh around 70lbs if her parents and past mean anything....which sometimes doesnt....given my current dog is 70lbs and her dad was 120 and mom 90...whew..

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