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Ok. So the vet told me 3 cups a day, 3 feedings. When I do this she's always hungry. Her bowl holds about 2-3 cups. If I fill the bowl she doesn't eat it all at once. She eats it through the day. If I feed her the vet's way, she is overly thin. Last week she weighed 19.5 lbs. This week she weighs 23.5. Her waist is too thin (wraps in), her spine is easily feel able, as are her ribs. When I feed her my way, she also has far more energy.

In regards to height, she has outgrown both a small and medium crate for potty training (and because we are redoing the floors and painting, so there is too much for her to get in to) so I want to make sure her height and weight match up. I don't want to over feed her, but at the same time I don't want to under feed her.

Now my father is the breeder and she is now the same weight of her sisters that my dad still has. So who is right? Should I keep doing like I am, or should I reduce it to 3 feedings, but just increase the amount I give her?
 

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What was the breeders (father's) opinion?

I do not believe in free feeding a puppy. Each puppy grows and develops differently....again if your dad is a breeder what is his take on it?
 

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I'm not into free feeding either. I do feed a puppy as much as they want to eat three times a day - unless they are little piggys and will eat until they explode - and pick it up between meals. Once they start losing that lean look, then you need to start limiting the amounts at each meal.

If your pup is too thin when feeding three times a day, you aren't feeding enough.
 

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How old is she?

If she is getting 3 cups a day 3 times a day then she shouldn't be as skinny as you say she is, has a medical condition been ruled out?
 

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Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
What was the breeders (father's) opinion?

I do not believe in free feeding a puppy. Each puppy grows and develops differently....again if your dad is a breeder what is his take on it?
He's always let them eat as much as they want. She also gets plenty of exercise between me, the neighbors, and other activities we do. Though I don't know that he free feeds. I should clarify that with him. If I put one cup in, she'll eat that food, and lick the bowl out. She then picks up her food bowl and throws it around. Behavior she does not exhibit if I leave food down for her.

I'm not into free feeding either. I do feed a puppy as much as they want to eat three times a day - unless they are little piggys and will eat until they explode - and pick it up between meals. Once they start losing that lean look, then you need to start limiting the amounts at each meal.

If your pup is too thin when feeding three times a day, you aren't feeding enough.
That's my problem. I know I'm not feeding her enough. Even if I pick up the food, I still need to feed her more, I'm just not sure how much more.

LaRen616 said:
How old is she?

If she is getting 3 cups a day 3 times a day then she shouldn't be as skinny as you say she is, has a medical condition been ruled out?
She is 3 and a half going on 4 months. Her blood and fecal test out fine. The only medical issue she has that is active is a clogged tear duct.

Now that I've free fed her this last week she's put on 4 lbs and is up to 23.5. I just fed her not long ago, there is still food in the bowl after she ate, and she is asleep. She can, and does, regulate her intake of food, but if it's unhealthy, it's unhealthy so I need to change that behavior on my part.
 

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How old is the pup?

Dogs grow at different rates. Some are skinny and some are proportional and this can be true even among siblings. My Tag was slow grower without ever really getting gangly. His brother had some serious size on him early on...Now they're starting to even out. Pups also rarely grow evenly. They grow up, then out and then up again. They'll be fat one week and thin the next.

With pups I will feed 3 times a day as much as they will eat in about 10 minutes before they walk away. If they walk away I will pull up their food, and not offer anymore until the next feeding time. If they are full they are full and trying to get them to eat more isn't really productive. Think about people. If you snack all day long are you ever really hungry for meals??

Additonally it is much healthier for a dog to be thin. It puts less stress on their growing joints. She should have a waist that tucks in and you should be able to feel her ribs and see maybe the last one.

Cade at 10 weeks was about 20lbs- which was a good healthy weight. You can see some definition to his body- puppies really shouldn't be roly poly at that age.


 

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How old is she?

If she is getting 3 cups a day 3 times a day then she shouldn't be as skinny as you say she is, has a medical condition been ruled out?
I believe OP meant 3 cups a day total, over 3 feedings. So a cup for each feeding.

OP, I'm going through a similar issue right now, so I don't have much advice. Right now, I am experimenting with different foods until I find something that works.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I believe OP meant 3 cups a day total, over 3 feedings. So a cup for each feeding.

OP, I'm going through a similar issue right now, so I don't have much advice. Right now, I am experimenting with different foods until I find something that works.
She loves the food we have, it's Blue Buffalo and the ingredients list is pretty good. She has so much fur due to puppy fur and a winter coat (born outside, lived outside until 8 weeks old) so it's hard to get a picture of her size other than she looks like a ball of fluff.
 

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It is much, much better for your pup to be thin, then to put too much weight on her and risk joint issues later. I'd follow your vet's advice!
 

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It is much, much better for your pup to be thin, then to put too much weight on her and risk joint issues later. I'd follow your vet's advice!
I know it's better to be thin, but I don't want her overly thin either. That's unhealthy, and she's not shown any pudge. She's actually still a bit thin and I'm happy with how she is now since I know she is growing like a weed. I was thinking of upping to a cup and a half per feeding?
 

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According to Blue Buffalo for the puppy food I just looked at, recommended feeding amounts for 3-5 months old are: 2 1/2 - 4 cups per day.

Also did your vet know exactly what type of kibble you are feeding?

I fed my 3 month old twice a day, spliting up the amount between two feedings.

Also at 5.5 months she eat's 2.5 cups in the morning and 2 cups in the evening. After she is done eating she'll also lick the bowls clean. And will still eat anything off the floor that doesn't match the carpet color.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
According to Blue Buffalo for the puppy food I just looked at, recommended feeding amounts for 3-5 months old are: 2 1/2 - 4 cups per day.

Also did your vet know exactly what type of kibble you are feeding?

I fed my 3 month old twice a day, spliting up the amount between two feedings.

Also at 5.5 months she eat's 2.5 cups in the morning and 2 cups in the evening. After she is done eating she'll also lick the bowls clean. And will still eat anything off the floor that doesn't match the carpet color.
The vet knew what brand. She does much better in regards to weight and energy when I feed her the 4 cups a day. I think I'll stick with that for now and see how it goes. Thanks for the help everyone!
 

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You should be able to feel her hips and ribs but not see them. Slender is good, thin is something else entirely. I have always free fed (current dog) in spite of what many say and it has worked out very well for her.
She eats all she wants when she wants it and never over-eats. She has remained slender but was never thin. Some dogs are better than others at this so it's not recommended for everyone. My previous 2 dogs were little piggies and it would not have worked for them.
 

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Where do you feed her? Some pups don't finish their meals just because like any baby they get bored and distracted. You could try feeding her in her crate, where she has nothing else to do but to eat and release her as soon as she finish as a reward.
 

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Where do you feed her? Some pups don't finish their meals just because like any baby they get bored and distracted. You could try feeding her in her crate, where she has nothing else to do but to eat and release her as soon as she finish as a reward.
That is where she eats. Someone mentioned 4 cups based off of my current food's chart (the blue buffalo site is slow for me right now, can't get to it), and I always put two cups in the bowl. She'll eat it through the day, I'll add another two cups, and she'll eat that through the evening and right before bed. So she's getting about 4 cups a day my way.

PaddyD said:
You should be able to feel her hips and ribs but not see them. Slender is good, thin is something else entirely. I have always free fed (current dog) in spite of what many say and it has worked out very well for her.
She eats all she wants when she wants it and never over-eats. She has remained slender but was never thin. Some dogs are better than others at this so it's not recommended for everyone. My previous 2 dogs were little piggies and it would not have worked for them.
She is not slender, she was thin. She has too much fur to be able to show how thin she was though :(

Also, I free fed my current adult and he's in great shape, even at the age of 11 going on 12. Now I also had a lab when I got my last dog and HE was a piggy. He ballooned up to around 95 lbs (English lab..should not have been that big). Then we got my current male as a puppy and the lab took to him instantly so they ran around and he, the lab, went down to normal weight. Anyway, off topic :lol:
 

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Hi all, we just got our female GSD last week. She is 16 weeks and weighs 32lbs. We are feeding her food called "Life's Abundance" which is what the breeders says he has been feeding her. He also said he fed her 3/4 cup two times a day. Well her stomach looks VERY skinny. You can't see ribs, but her hips are sticking out so much it looks like she is starving. So, we are feeding her 1 cup 2xday. I don't even think this is enough because she had an accident in her crate and ate her poop. Tonight, we took her for a walk and for the first time she put another dogs poop in her mouth. Luckily we got it out. It seems like she is so hungry, but we are afraid to over feed her. She is being fed according to what is on the bag also.

I know that the food called "Beneful" is not the best out there. However, we had a dog for 10 years before and that is what she ate and she was as healthy as can be and never was "starving". I am thinking of slowly weaning our pup over to Beneful and the heck with this over priced dog food that is starving her!
 

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Lifes abundance is the Dr Janes?
I wouldn't necessarily go by the recommended amount, but how the pup feels, you'll see their belly fill and recede as they digest. Beneful is crap...please don't feed that !!!
You can feed other middle of the road brands instead of the high end vs lower of the lows. Look at the pet store layout. They put the crap foods all together and work their way to the better brands.
Puppies eat their poop out of habit, see mom doing it and they will do the same if the breeder isn't picking it up fast enough.
Did you get a fecal done on your pup? Worms may be the reason for the gaunt appearance.
 

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I don't know about Dr. James. I did look it up online and it's suppose to be holistic/natural better food. When I look down at my pup while I am standing up her hips are so prominent and her rib width is way too thin.

When you say middle of the road food, how about Purina Healthy Puppy? Also, my pup has some bad smelling gas. When we took Lexi to her first puppy vet visit they did not do fecals or anything. If the pup has worms, isn't it possible to actually see the worms in the poop? I've looked closely at her stools and haven't seen anything.
 

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Lifes Abundance Premium Dog Food, all natural dog food
I would still have a fecal run, parasites are very common in puppies, and the gas passing you are smelling can be a symptom, along with the lack of body tone.
I would not go lower in nutrition, this is the most important time in a dogs life to be getting proper nutrition while they are growing!
Personally, Purina or any other grocery store brands are not what I'd feed. Look in the nutrition threads here for more info on fillers, etc. If you have to order the lifes abundance, then you are paying $$
Other brands can be just as good that you get locally. Wellness, Acana, even Taste of the Wild will be great for a growing pup.
 

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Thank you Onyx. I looked up the feeding requirements for Life's Abundance and it says for a dog that weighs 45 lbs. would be fed 2 1/1 cups a day!! That's insane. Its not enough to fill their bellies. For my pup who weighs 32 lbs the max per day is only 1 3/4 cup. I am going to try Blue Buffalo and wean her off this overpriced non-filling food. You can actually see the frustration in her when she is so hungry. She is jumping up on us just smelling a cup of coffee. What's terrrible is we paid $55.00 for this huge bag that we are just going to toss out.
 
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