Brigetta is about 9 months. When I got her at around 14 weeks, she was under weight and had only been eating what she could find outside. She has been gaining approximately 4 to 5 pounds a month. Last month she weighed 45 pounds. When I brought her in yesterday, the vet tech told me that she weighed in at 44 pounds. They were not too concerned about it and said I could add a little more to her food intake. The reason I am concerned is that since she is only 9 months, shouldn't she still be growing? If she were older, I wouldn't worry about 1 pound. She gets 3 cups a day, plus treats. We have recently switched foods (calories are about the same) and the only other thing is that over the last month we have been walking a little more, but only about 10 or minutes more. Should I just add a 1/2 cup more to her food and see how she does or does anyone think this is something I should be more concerned about. Also, does anyone think that because she was underweight and not on a proper diet at such a young age she will never grow into herself completely? Thanks in advance.
Teresa, mom to Brigetta and Prudence
I personally wouldn't be concerned about a 1 pound loss even in a 9 month old. Many dogs do the bulk of their growing in the first 6 months so it could be that Brigetta has simply stopped growing. She may fill out over the next 6-12 months and put on a few. The 1 pound loss could come from the extra walking you are doing even if it is only an extra ten minutes a day...over the course of a week that is an added 70 minutes of exercise. Try adding the extra 1/2 cup if you think it will help but again, I wouldn't be overly concerned. It is normal for a dog to fluctuate between a pound or two of their ideal weight.Possibly. Nutrition is so crucial in those first few weeks of life especially that it may have effected her development. I don't know that of course but as long as she is fit and healthy now that is all that matters.Also, does anyone think that because she was underweight and not on a proper diet at such a young age she will never grow into herself completely?
Most dogs are done with their big growth period by 9 months. I wouldn't panic over a pound, especially with the added exercise. She will probably slowly fill out for another year. Maybe genetically she is supposed to be around 50-55#.
I have found that my dogs process different brands of food differently - even if they have the same amount of calories. I guess it has to do with digestibility of the food. In the past I fed three different foods that had similar calorie counts, and had to feed different amounts of each food to keep the dogs at the same weight. I don't think the loss of a pound is too big a problem, but at 9 months your dog shouldn't be losing weight, so I would increase her food amount.