Need to put some weight on Traveler - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-20-2017, 05:39 PM Thread Starter
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Need to put some weight on Traveler

My 10 year old GSD Traveler has health issues unrelated to food. He has always been very slim but in the last few months he is eating full meals but losing weight. I'd like to see him gain 5 pounds or so.

Currently I'm feeding Orijen Regional Red grain free and rotate between that and Farmina N&D Lamb grain free. I just purchased Acana freshwater fish grain free but we haven't tried that yet. He gets a couple raw eggs a week along with fish oil or coconut oil.

I'm thinking this grain free business may not be working for us any more. If I feed him more goodies, he just makes poop puddles.

I was feeding raw beef w/suggested amount of meaty bone along with homemade veggie mix and bone broth and eggs and oil but gave that up thinking that may be the problem. Maybe it wasn't- I don't know.

He is not an active dog and no chow hound so I need to find something that has higher calories per servings?

Any suggestions?

Thanks,

Lynn & Traveler
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post #2 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-20-2017, 06:29 PM
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What about being generous with in-between meal snacks? Bestbullysticks.com has a variety of goodies beyond just bully sticks -- mine love dried beef liver slices, trachea, and tripe sticks.

I also bake meat balls for the ones that need to gain -- ground beef (incl. a little liver if you have it...), eggs, oats, and maybe wheat germ are the foundation of a good meatball for dogs (NO OIL ADDED -- not worth the pancreatitis risk). They get to enjoy one of these in between meals. When these are warm, the steam is enticing to the dogs who don't normally have much appetite -- esp. if there's some cooked liver in there.
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post #3 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-21-2017, 10:27 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the suggestions, Magwart. I had been feeding raw meatballs made with saw shavings from the butcher. It's a combo of meat & bone & marrow from whatever they have been cutting up which he loves but more than two and he's giving me pudding poops. I trained him with dried liver bits but didn't occur to me that would help add weight.

Do you think it's the grain that makes the weight gain?

My whole concern is to add bulk weight not big belly ;-)

Thanks very much for your suggestion.

Lynn & Traveler
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post #4 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-21-2017, 03:26 PM
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My hunch is it's just the extra calories. I really don't know!

There's one thing I hesitated to post earlier since it's one of those "maybe I'd rather not know" kinds of things, but I feel guilty about hiding it too: when seniors can't hold weight, I get really worried. It has been the first sign of cancer in a few of my oldsters. Maybe take him in for a really thorough check-up, just to be sure he's okay? And I'll send good thoughts your way! I really don't want to scare you, but I know you want to do everything you can to keep him with you as long as possible....so I would check.
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post #5 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-21-2017, 03:53 PM Thread Starter
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He was diagnosed with Hemangio sarcoma Dec 2015. I've kept him together with herbs, mushrooms, I'm Yunity, Apocaps, raw, bone broth, etc and lots of luck and love. I'm thinking what you are thinking but his behavior and eating habits don't seem indicative of that but that's not to say it can't be.
Yup, I'll do anything for Traveler. Too bad he won't eat the satin balls no matter what I do so I'm reaching out for other suggestions.

Thank you for your honesty. We don't always want to know, that's true, but once we know, we can only try our best to make them comfortable until they tell us life isn't fun any more.

Lynn & Traveler
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post #6 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-21-2017, 04:09 PM
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Two years beyond the hemangio diagnosis is AMAZING!!!! Huge credit to you!!!

There's a "full spectrum" home cooked diet published in the Dog Cancer Survival Guide (written by a holistic vet partnering with a vet oncologist). I wonder if he'd maybe do better on pure home cooking, formulated for dogs fighting cancer? I found a PDF of it, if you don't already have the book:
http://www.dogcancerbook.com/wp-cont...3kjlkbj9p3.pdf

Also, Dr. Harvey's has a dehydrated food specifically for cancer dogs. I like that brand a lot -- it's a little hard to find, but they're a good little company. The video explaining the theory underlying this diet is pretty interesting:
https://www.drharveys.com/products/d...hoCOxUQAvD_BwE

Last edited by Magwart; 07-21-2017 at 04:16 PM.
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post #7 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-24-2017, 10:21 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Magwart View Post
Two years beyond the hemangio diagnosis is AMAZING!!!! Huge credit to you!!!

There's a "full spectrum" home cooked diet published in the Dog Cancer Survival Guide (written by a holistic vet partnering with a vet oncologist). I wonder if he'd maybe do better on pure home cooking, formulated for dogs fighting cancer? I found a PDF of it, if you don't already have the book:
http://www.dogcancerbook.com/wp-cont...3kjlkbj9p3.pdf

Also, Dr. Harvey's has a dehydrated food specifically for cancer dogs. I like that brand a lot -- it's a little hard to find, but they're a good little company. The video explaining the theory underlying this diet is pretty interesting:
https://www.drharveys.com/products/d...hoCOxUQAvD_BwE

Thank you, Magwart. I think I'm a pretty lucky girl myself. I guess Traveler doesn't want to leave yet as he knows I'll be a mess to say the least.

I have the cancer doctor's book and I thank you for the Dr. Harvey info. Going to check on that tonight!

Thank you again.

Lynn & Traveler
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post #8 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-24-2017, 11:43 AM
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The raw diet will keep a dog thin. Have you tried multiple feedings a day? That may help with increasing the volume of food and the loose stools. I would add some cooked pasta in with his raw food, pasta will help add some weight to him.

Older dogs seem to lose weight and raw fed dogs rarely get fat, so you have both things going on. You've done a great job with him and I applaud you. The marrow and fat in the meatballs could be too rich and causing the runny stool. You could add pure fat, like butter to his food but that may make his stool loose as well. The liver treats, if he gets a lot can cause some loose stools as well. I'd go with canned pumpkin and try adding in some cooked pasta with each feeding.

Best of luck with him.

“Beware of false knowledge; it is more dangerous than ignorance”. George Bernard Shaw

Jim
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post #9 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-24-2017, 01:18 PM
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Wow that is AMAZING on the hemangio! Carbs help with putting on weight but I am not sure they are the best with cancer.

The Victor Hi Pro (only 30-20) really helped Beau add some needed weight and I moved hi to high energy to cut the protein a little (24-20) both have sorghum and millet though which are not highly refined carbs.

Beau also tends to have loose stools and this food did the number for him.

Nancy



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post #10 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-24-2017, 02:22 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you Slamdunc and Nancy.

Slamdunc, you may have hit the proverbial nail mentioning raw fed. There's not a heck of a lot of fat in the beef I'm feeding.

Both of you mentioned increasing carbs. I'll give that a try. Over the weekend I fed him small portions throughout the day and had some success with poop formation. This worked better than the chicken & rice I tried. That was a total disaster but perhaps caused by the chicken as I rarely feed that protein.

Thanks for all the suggestions. I'm feeling a little better having some other things to try.

I love him so much but I won't put my feelings in front of his well being. Traveler will not suffer.

Lynn & Traveler
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