Best Foods for Underweight German Shepherd - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 21 (permalink) Old 06-04-2019, 08:30 PM Thread Starter
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Smile Best Foods for Underweight German Shepherd

Hi there!

My name is Noah and this is my first post on this forum! I'm really excited to be apart of the community and look forward to getting some tips and tricks along the way

So, I just got home from adopting a beautiful 4 year old German Shepherd (though I would assume she is not... she definitely looks purebred- photos to come) from a local animal shelter and am awaiting the completion of her spay surgery to pick her up sometime this week. Upon meeting her I noticed how very underweight she was and how malnourished she looked. I was told she was just getting over Kennel Cough and would be remaining on medicine until the 6th. The wet and dry food in her bowls were untouched.

I am wondering first how I can start getting her excited and interested in eating again because she seems to be a bit turned off to the idea which may change once she's out of the environment but if it doesn't I want to know what I can do to make it easier for her. Second, what are some good either food brands or simple recipes I can buy/make to feed her that will help her gain weight quicker. And on top of that how frequently should I feed her. Really just any tips or advice you can give me would be greatly appreciated!

Also, I have done tons of research prior to my decision to adopt but I just want to compare what I've found with people who have much more experience. I promise I took time to inform myself before making this decision!

Thank you so much! I can't wait for you all to meet her soon
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post #2 of 21 (permalink) Old 06-05-2019, 12:15 PM
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Congratulations and welcome to the forum! The stress of being in the shelter may be a factor in her loss of appetite. Every dog is different and what they eat ravenously, just pick at, or ignore will vary. My four will eat Fromm and Honest Kitchen without fail, but I do give things like chicken feet, beef, and such on occasion, generally if I'm making dinner and it's something they like then they'll get some too. You may find she likes plain kibble or does better with a raw diet, it'll take time to see what works best. I recall a thread on making "Satin balls" for weight gain, you might try the forum search bar and looks for threads on it to see if it's something you want to try.
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post #3 of 21 (permalink) Old 06-05-2019, 12:55 PM
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Hi Noah and WELCOME!

You can try a small amount of plain, unflavored, no sweeteners (especially no xylitol) yogurt or goats milk mixed in her kibble which could entice her.

Go slow when trying to make changes to her diet. Keep her on the same kibble the shelter is feeding for several weeks until she gets comfortable with the transition. Always transition with small amounts of new food mixed with old, taking a week or two to change eventually transitioning out the old food.
If stool gets loose, go back to previous amount fed (where stool was solid) and hold at that amount for a few days until his gut gets use to it. Then increase again. This is called "bowel tolerance".


Kibble:
Fromm’s:https://frommfamily.com/ Store locator: http://frommfamily.com/retailers/usa/#progress=2
You can rotate flavors within the Fromm line to keep her interest.



Instinct:
https://www.instinctpetfood.com/dogs...ee-duck-recipe
(the Instinct is high protein so if you choose this, transition in very small amounts so as not to cause diarrhea)
Store locator: https://www.instinctpetfood.com/store-locator

I would also suggest a high quality Digestive Enzyme (helps to assimilate food) & a ProBiotic (keeps the "good" bacteria in the gut). Since about 75% of the immune system lies in the gut it is very important to keep it healthy.
Below are Human Ingredient Products made for dogs:
Sunday Sundaehttps://feedsentials.com/sundaysundae (click on the email to order)
Gut Sensehttp://dr-dobias-natural-healing-usa...ducts/gutsense
Mercola Digestive/Probiotic: https://shop.mercola.com/product/2118/1/whole-food-digestive-probiotic-for-pets-94g-per-container-1-container
Digest All Plus:https://www.thewholisticpet.com/dog/supplements/digestion/wholistic-digest-all-plustm.html
Animal Essentials: Plant Enzyme w/ Probiotics 3.5 oz 100 gm - Animal Essentials


Best of luck!

Moms
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post #4 of 21 (permalink) Old 06-05-2019, 01:09 PM
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I've dealt with a few very anxious shelter dogs in the past and at first I would hand feed them.If dry kibble was rejected,I would mix in something delicious and smelly.Chopped boiled eggs,canned dog or cat food,beef or chicken broth.GSDs tend to be one family dogs so it takes some time and patience for them to relax and settle in after being uprooted.Good luck!
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post #5 of 21 (permalink) Old 06-05-2019, 01:26 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you for the tips! I'll definitely look into the Satin Balls. And yeah I am hoping that just being out of the shelter will also help. Thanks again
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post #6 of 21 (permalink) Old 06-05-2019, 01:29 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you for the tips! I was wondering how long I should take to transition her from the shelter kibble, so thank you! And the links... you're a superstar !!! Thank you so much I have lots to research now
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post #7 of 21 (permalink) Old 06-05-2019, 01:31 PM Thread Starter
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Great tips thank you! Yeah I am thankful I'm not working a lot this week or next so that I can be home with her while she settles in. Thanks again!
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post #8 of 21 (permalink) Old 06-05-2019, 07:45 PM
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If you want a good high calorie food that is easily digested try dr. tim's momentum. Watch the weight gain though, this food has over 500 calories per cup.

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post #9 of 21 (permalink) Old 06-05-2019, 07:48 PM
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Kennel cough and a spay are a lot for her body to deal with. It is too bad they didn’t wait to spay until she was completely well. I’m not surprised she has no appetite. It could be due to medication, too. Once you get her home, pick a food and gradually switch her over. Also consider raw or modified raw. Her appetite should pick up once she is home with you and feeling better.
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post #10 of 21 (permalink) Old 06-11-2019, 02:19 PM Thread Starter
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Hi guys!

Update! We got to take her home yesterday and she's doing pretty well! She has some pretty bad separation anxiety which makes total sense, so I haven't really left her side except for at night when shes in her crate. She is still coughing and yacked up a tiny bit of mucus today from her Kennel Cough, but she seems to be doing better from the rest and medicine.

I've noticed twice now that she keeps licking her front paws and legs. I read that could be a sign of her separation anxiety because it releases endorphins, but she just did it for the second time just now while shes laying next to me.

Also, she doesn't like to sleep. I can tell she's tired because she laying down now but with her head up like in the attached photos and her eyes keep closing and opening like shes falling asleep but she is like keeping herself awake almost? Lastly, she won't stop panting. Her water bowl hasn't been empty once and she's been drinking plenty so I know she isn't dehydrated.

Sorry this post is all over the place! Just kind of venting out all my thoughts and concerns haha. She has a vet appointment tomorrow so I'm sure I'll get more answers to my questions then as well.

Anyway, without further ado I'd like to introduce everyone to sweet Maisie!
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