How can I get my dog to lose weight?

asked 2015-05-14 14:03:01 -0500

Looking for tips and advice on getting my Beagle back to the right size. We just adopted her a month ago and she is very overweight!

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answered 2015-05-16 09:50:10 -0500

Dry dog food is full of carbs. If you cut them out, by feeding your dog more protein (with appropriate supplements), she will drop the weight. As Frances wrote above, most popular treats are also full of carbs. Switch to something like dried 100% liver and give small amounts, since that's a primo treat IMO. Other times, I give my dog raw, zero-calorie vegetables, like green beans, cucumber, broccoli, carrots, etc. He likes them all, except celery. I've given raw vegetables to other guest dogs and most seem to like them with no ill effect.

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answered 2015-05-16 07:55:47 -0500

Trust me on this. Eliminate all treats, they are so fattening, until he is at his ideal weight. You can give him a carrot as a treat. Cut down his food. So lets just say he eats a cup a day, cut that to 3/4 cup and walk and or run with him periodically if you don't want to do it all the time. I did this with my Chihuahua who was overweight and in a matter of a month she was at her ideal weight. Good luck.

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answered 2015-05-14 23:26:16 -0500

Was the dog checked by a vet before adoption? Always speak to a Vet about any special needs a dog may have first. Try this: No table food Ever. Start walking more and more everyday. Even if you are really busy 10 mins in the AM and PM is good. A good healthy (Quality) low cal dog food. Play time daily too.

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answered 2015-05-16 13:20:59 -0500

When I adopted my border collie mix, she was a little sausage (a little sausage with a terrible haircut, no less!). She was about 15 lbs overweight, which is a lot considering she's currently in great shape at just over 30 lbs. To get her back into shape, I picked out a healthy, balanced food. I know some of the recommendations are to cut out carbs and go high-protein, but be careful with this route, as too much protein, especially on an already stressed system, is really hard on the kidneys. You want additional protein after hard exercise because then her body will absorb it as it builds muscle, but if the body doesn't need it, the kidneys have to flush it out. This is why active breed foods and puppy foods contain higher protein than your standard adult food diet. Also, your brain uses about 25% of your calorie intake, and can only use the energy produced by breaking down carbs. Consult your vet regarding the best diet for your dog and to rule out any medical reason for her weight gain and to make sure she's healthy enough for some increased exercise.

Keep an eye on the recommended serving sizes for her current weight, and for her ideal weight, and give her something in between, varying the amount of food she receives with her exercise. If she's exercising less that day, stick closer to the ideal weight meal size. If she's had a very active day, give her a larger amount. If treats are important for training or just because, make sure you have healthy treats on hand, or just use part of her food for the day to hand out. My girls love veggie scraps, especially mushrooms, asparagus and brussel sprouts, but something like baked or boiled chicken would also be a good, healthy option for dogs who aren't as excited about veggies. Just remember to compensate for those treats at the next meal time.

For exercise, make sure you're providing her with a variety of activities that she can handle. Increase her walk distance as her endurance increases, and let her run as much as she's comfortable with, providing lots of water and rest opportunities. With my dog, we spent a lot of time at the dog park or play dates with friends, because she is not a fetch dog, and I'm not a runner. We took long walks around my hilly neighborhood. We took hikes and sometimes she wore her backpack. We went to the beach, which she adores. She pretty much went everywhere with me. She dropped the weight pretty quickly and has had no trouble keeping it off. Now that she's in shape, I use a bike jogger to exercise her at least a few times a week. She LOVES running, and this eliminates the need to have another dog around to chase, while giving me the means to go as fast as... (more)

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The dog should be checked by a vet for any underlying medical reasons for weight gain, like hypothyroidism. However, most veterinarians (aside from holistic ones) know little about nutrition and diet. It is only now becoming more important since pets started developing so many ailments and diseases found in humans. I suggest doing your own research and learning what foods dogs actually need. I do prepare my own food--not a raw diet--and it is not just protein, but some healthy carbs, vegetables, fat, bone meal, natural enzymes and more. I am not in the least concerned about kidney problems. A much better alternative to dry kibble is a natural wet dog food, especially the grain-free types and ones labeled 95%. Kibble has to be at least 50% carb in order to stick together into pellet shape and be extruded by the machines. If you cut back on these empty, processed... (more)

Karen R.'s profile image Karen R.  ( 2015-05-17 00:31:50 -0500 ) edit

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