Difference between too skinny or just thin? - German Shepherd Dog Forums

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Old 11-13-2012, 07:43 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Difference between too skinny or just thin?

I realize that Kaiser is still an adolescent and is consequently still growing, however I'm starting to worry that he might be a little too skinny. When he is groomed, his fur is plush and he is just so handsome. When he is wet, he almost seems too boney and very thin.

I know there is a huge difference between how he looks dry versus wet for obvious reasons, but the more I think about it, the more I'm worried that I might be underfeeding him. His hips and spine are more prominant than I would expect and he eats his food with gusto and then looks for more. Yes, he has become quite food motivated as he has matured, but he only gets about 2.5 cups of his kibble a day (he was on Acana and now he is on Innova Beef/Lamb due to Acana's plant fire). If I feed him any more than 2.5 cups then he gets horrible poops that last for days.

Behaviorly, he is everything I would predict a sassy, active, adolescent puppy to be. Health-wise, aside from the intermittant soreness from over-exercising, he seems perfect.

So to get to my question: How skinny is too skinny? Where do you draw the line? What is your basis of comparison for a longer coated puppy?
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Old 11-13-2012, 07:44 PM   #2 (permalink)
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HEre he is (cell phone picture) at 40 weeks after a bath


stack 40 weeks by jsnail17, on Flickr

The only "wet" picture I have of him...here he is shaking off the excess water. I know he's in the process of moving, so I'm sure his body is contorted a bit...but you get the idea

IMG_20121104_023340 by jsnail17, on Flickr
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Last edited by Kaiser2012; 11-13-2012 at 07:47 PM.
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Old 11-13-2012, 07:47 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Our GSD eats 4c. per day...do you mean 2.5 cups TWICE a day??

If you can feel all the spine, all the ribs easily, the hip bones. Too thin.

Look here:
http://vet.osu.edu/vmc/body-condition-scoring-chart
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Old 11-13-2012, 07:49 PM   #4 (permalink)
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If you can feel his hips and spine so prominently then I would say he's too thin. I also feed my dog between 4 and 5 cups of food a day and he is still very lean.
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Old 11-13-2012, 07:53 PM   #5 (permalink)
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How is his muscle tone? That is more important to me than thick/thin....I want to feel some muscle.
Kaiser is absolutely gorgeous!!
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Old 11-13-2012, 07:56 PM   #6 (permalink)
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yeah just once a day. I was overfeeding him on the orijen and his poops were horrible. Once I cut back to 2.5 the poops stabilized. I kept him on that for the Acana and now for the Innova Prime. The bag recommends just under 3/(once a day) for an active dog and I think 2ish for a less active one. I've just stayed around 2.5 since that's about all his digestive system can take.
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Old 11-13-2012, 07:58 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by onyx'girl View Post
How is his muscle tone? That is more important to me than thick/thin....I want to feel some muscle.
Kaiser is absolutely gorgeous!!

Well, he has a loose coat (is the term "wet"?) so I'm honestly not sure how much muscle I'm feeling, and I can't really just look at him to determine it because of his coat length How would I figure this out?
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Old 11-13-2012, 08:00 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Feel him, is he tight fleshed in the thighs/shoulders, under all that skin/coat?
Do you use anything for training treats? Sometimes treats will cause issues with digestion.
If I thought my pup was too skinny, I'd feed three small meals instead of two, see if that stops the pudding poop.
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Old 11-13-2012, 08:02 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by onyx'girl View Post
Do you use anything for training treats? Sometimes treats will cause issues with digestion.
If I thought my pup was too skinny, I'd feed three small meals instead of two, see if that stops the pudding poop.
I use his kibble for training treats because of his sensitive tummy (the rest of the time I use his ball as a reward). I used to use fish based treats, grain free, but he's gotten more sensitive over the past few months. I can't use chicken (allergies) so now I'm trying very small amounts of lamb lung (so far so good, but I'm only using 3-4 pieces).

I can try a third meal but unfortunately I can't come home during the day...so if that was the case he would eat in the morning, as soon as I got home at night, and then...well...I'm not sure when? I don't have anyone I trust to come over during the day either, especially not to feed him every day, 5 days a week
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Old 11-13-2012, 08:03 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Honestly, our GSD pup gets Kirkland Signature and eats 4c. a day (2x twice a day).

If that food isn't agreeing with him and he's underweight you may want to switch foods. I'd like to see a growing pup eating 2c twice a day or as Onyx suggest, 3 smaller meals a day.

If he's playful and active that says alot - but also feel where his bones are, and if they are "easily felt". The site explains it.
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