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Old 08-09-2009, 12:54 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Skinny German Shepherd

I adopted my 3 1/2 year old male German shepherd dog from a rescue group 2 years ago. He is tall and long-but VERY skinny: all of his ribs show as well as his hip bones, and he is rather "flat"- like a fish. That is, if he tries to lay on his back, he simply falls to one side or the other because his spine sticks out. He weighs about 60 lbs. He eats normally- Iams dry chunks and a fair amount of protein scraps each day (chicken or poirk or beef). He was treated for whipworms in February, and is on heartworm prevention and Frontline. He seems to have normal strength and stamina. He is very much loved and cared for. Any ideas as to how to put some weight on him, or why he is so skinny?
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Old 08-09-2009, 12:59 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Skinny German Shepherd

Has he been checked out by a vet? (Besides for the worms.)
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Old 08-09-2009, 12:59 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Skinny German Shepherd

Take him in and have the vet do a cTLI and cobalamine/folate tests. The cTLI is to test for Exocrine Pancreatic Deficiency (EPI) and the cobalamine/folate test the B12 and folate levels which can show SIBO (small intestine bacterial overgrowth) and a B12 deficiency. 70% of all dogs diagnosed with EPI are GSD's. When was the last time he was at the vet and what is the normal amount of food he eats?
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Old 08-09-2009, 12:59 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Skinny German Shepherd

Also, what did his poo look like? Can you post any pics?
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Old 08-09-2009, 01:00 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Skinny German Shepherd

Also, welcome to the board.
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Old 08-09-2009, 01:01 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Skinny German Shepherd

Yes, the vet just thought he was bred that way. He was treated for whipworms in Feb.
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Old 08-09-2009, 01:01 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted By: jaggirl47Also, welcome to the board.
Thanks :-)
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Old 08-09-2009, 01:05 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Skinny German Shepherd

Maybe find a new vet? The only dogs that are "bred that way" are some of the sight hounds. (Greyhounds ect...) And even THEY shouldn't be as skinny as it sounds like your boy may be.

A backbone that "protrudes" a little COULD be the way he is built. But that doesn't explain the ribs showing.
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Old 08-09-2009, 01:05 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Skinny German Shepherd

Quote:
Originally Posted By: jaggirl47Take him in and have the vet do a cTLI and cobalamine/folate tests. The cTLI is to test for Exocrine Pancreatic Deficiency (EPI) and the cobalamine/folate test the B12 and folate levels which can show SIBO (small intestine bacterial overgrowth) and a B12 deficiency. 70% of all dogs diagnosed with EPI are GSD's.
I would second that recommendation. Make sure you fast him for 12 hours prior to the blood draw for an accurate reading.
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Old 08-09-2009, 01:08 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: Skinny German Shepherd

http://www.epi4dogs.com/
http://www.wsgenetics.org/epi.htm
http://www.cvm.tamu.edu/cgr/EPI%20Research.htm
http://www.cvm.tamu.edu/gilab/assays/tli.shtml
http://www.epi-research-fund.com/index.htm

These are some good articles to print and take to the vet. Many vets don't recognize the symptoms when they see them. Also, do you have a pic?
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