How do I fatten up my super skinny Great Dane???

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  How do I fatten up my super skinny Great Dane???
« on: February 24, 2009, 09:17:54 AM »

NewDaneMom
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Hi,
We just adopted our first Great Dane who is 3 and a half and SOOOOOOO skinny. He has a great appetite and is otherwise healthy according to the vet but he needs another 20-30 pounds on him. We have no idea how to accomplish this since we've been feeding him quality food mixed with rice and we can still count every bone in his body. Does anyone here have any suggestions. We have another dog as well who needs to lose a few pounds so it is kind of chaotic at our house trying to meet all the dietary requirements!

Looking forward to hearing some ideas from you all. We're doing our best to make sure he's happy and healthy given all he's been through in the last few months. He's an amazing dog and we love him already - now we just need to make sure there's a bit more of him to love! Any suggestions welcome!

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  Re: How do I fatten up my super skinny Great Dane???
« Reply #1 on: February 24, 2009, 09:44:33 AM »

ZooCrew
Rank: Tail Wagging Champ
Posts: 3355

Hello and welcome!  Hope you stick around and enjoy all the love.  Wink

First I guess I would have to ask what brand you are feeding the dane now and how much?  I think that may help others know where to go from there helping you.



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  Re: How do I fatten up my super skinny Great Dane???
« Reply #2 on: February 24, 2009, 12:16:22 PM »

NewDaneMom
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Thanks for all the replies! I will try to answer some of the questions. We're feeding him Wellness CORE dry food. He gets 3 cups twice a day mixed with rice or pasta and also it's mixed with California Natural Puppy which is what he was eating in rescue. I think they were feeding him the puppy food because of the high protein content since he's so underweight.

He is definitely the leaner type of Dane, he's not the huge muscular type. He's very tall but lanky. Our vet recommended we try to put 20-30 pounds on him. We keep feeling guilty when people stop to gawk at him and then inform us that he's 'so skinny' as if we don't already know this. We have the excuse that we just got him from rescue now but that will only work so long.

I could try Satin Balls, should I ask our vet before trying them or is it ok to just give them to him?

I will attach a couple of pics. They're not the best quality since I took them on my phone. He's a great dog. We lucked out with him. He is so well behaved and calm and he's very gentle with other animals and kids in our neighborhood. He is a little clingy but I sort of like that about him. He is attached to my hip at all times. I love him already, I just wish I could get him healthy!

Thanks again for your input.

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« Last Edit: February 24, 2009, 12:17:59 PM by NewDaneMom »
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  Re: How do I fatten up my super skinny Great Dane???
« Reply #3 on: February 24, 2009, 12:24:30 PM »

ZooCrew
Rank: Tail Wagging Champ
Posts: 3355

Awwwe, he's adorable!  I love the white patches/spots on his ears and the black spot in the middle of his head.  Cheesy

I'm a bit surprised though he wasn't neutered at the rescue?  Was it b/c of his weight?

In the first pic he does look a bit thin, but then he's curled into a ball, which would make his backbone stick out further.  In the second pic though, he doesn't look bad from the front.  

Everyone always thinks Gunther is skinny (well he is right now, he lost close to 20 lbs in the fall when we switched diets........1 0 left to go to get back to normal weight, on a similar diet, different brand).  But around here apparently danes are on the heavy side.  One worker at the pet store always has to tell us that there is a dane that comes in that weighs 230? lbs.  I dunno......... ..that seems almost fat to me, esp. since she said he wasn't taller than Gunther (or at least not much so).



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« Last Edit: February 24, 2009, 12:27:10 PM by ZooCrew »
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  Re: How do I fatten up my super skinny Great Dane???
« Reply #4 on: February 24, 2009, 12:25:37 PM »

Lyn
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Welcome to BPO! He's a cutie! I love the spot on top of his head. Smiley

I don't have a Dane but I have a Saint that was next to impossible to keep weight on. I was getting the comments too. Some were downright crude basically accusing me of starving my dog. Sad

I would defintely try the Satin Balls, they are known for putting weight on quickly so you need to make sure you don't overfeed them. But they do work!

I missed Julie's post. Just to add, some dogs are unable to maintain weight on the grain free foods. Maybe something like Innova adult (with grain) would help?

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« Last Edit: February 24, 2009, 12:29:25 PM by Lyn »
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  Re: How do I fatten up my super skinny Great Dane???
« Reply #5 on: February 24, 2009, 12:37:32 PM »

Kermit
Rank: Supreme Drooler
Posts: 1784


Hi and welcome!

Cute new friend you've got there! I bet once he's neutered, it won't be as hard to put weight on him. Most of the intact male dogs I know are really super lean.

A few years back my ex-boyfriend and I adopted a Dane who was incredibly thin, and I remember it taking a good amount of time getting her looking healthy. In addition to high quality kibble we "supplemented" her with plenty of cottage cheese if I remember correctly... Roll Eyes Cheesy  I still see her now and then and she stays on the thin side. I feel like it's a common issue with this breed.

Good luck!
~Rebekah

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  Re: How do I fatten up my super skinny Great Dane???
« Reply #6 on: February 24, 2009, 12:47:41 PM »

NewDaneMom
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Thanks everyone, we think he's pretty cute too!

It was part of our adoption contract that he is to be neutered within 60 days. I'm not sure if they didn't neuter him there because of his weight or financial reasons. I did think it was a little unusual though. We're to be refunded part of our adoption fee once we mail them proof that he's been altered. We have an appointment in a week for the big snip. And our vet didn't mention that his weight would be an issue. He looks good from the front, his chest is well developed but his sides and back end are VERY lean. Like you can see his hip bones and ribs and everything.

We've only had him for just under two weeks, so I'm probably over reacting. I just thought he'd gain something by now.

So maybe I should try a different food for him before trying the Satin Balls? Can anyone recommend a food of equal quality that has more filler? I will try the cottage cheese idea and see if he likes it.

This is so helpful, I'm glad I found this place!

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  Re: How do I fatten up my super skinny Great Dane???
« Reply #7 on: February 24, 2009, 01:08:18 PM »

ZooCrew
Rank: Tail Wagging Champ
Posts: 3355

Don't know if I can help you on the food.........l ol.  The food Gunther was on was Evo, which I still think is a great food, but one that just didn't work for him, made him lose too much weight.  I actually had a rep at a dog show this weekend tell me to try the red meat one instead but I told her there was no way I could afford to spend around $70-$75 a month just on one dog.  Undecided (was up to 5.5 cups @ 537 kcal/cup)

We switched over to Taste of the Wild.  Still a grain free food and good quality.  He does need more cups on it (7 now but will probably cut back once he's back to normal weight.......3 60-375 kcal/cup depending on flavor), as it is less calories, but it is also about $15 less a bag, and a few pounds more of food per bag (30 vs 28.6).  He has gained back 7 lbs of the 17+ he lost.  Food smells bad, but he loves it and I love that it comes in 3 flavors (something about added variety that I like).  So even though he's getting less calories now, he's actually gaining weight on it.

But I'm sure once our food guru comes on here, she will have some better suggestions for you.  How much does he weigh now compared with how tall he is?  Just curious. Enough babbling for me for one day.  Cheesy



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  Re: How do I fatten up my super skinny Great Dane???
« Reply #8 on: February 24, 2009, 01:22:45 PM »

NewfFan
Rank: Big Paw Certified
Posts: 263


Innova is a great food, and it seems to be higher in calories than some of the other premium foods. I know I've had trouble keeping weight off my dog while she's been on it. We're going to feed our lab puppy Innova large breed puppy and switch her to the Innova Adult at around 6-8 months, as well. I'm actually worried it might be hard to keep weight off of her on it! Maybe try Innova?

-Chantel-
Owned by:
Daisy, AKC Black Lab
Max 3 year old AQHA gelding


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  Re: How do I fatten up my super skinny Great Dane???
« Reply #9 on: February 24, 2009, 01:28:05 PM »

NewDaneMom
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Taste of the Wild was actually one that a friend of ours who works in rescue recommended. Along with Blue Buffalo Wilderness and California Natural (which they were feeding in rescue). Haven't heard too much about Innova, but could do some research on it. We fed him Wellness mostly because our other dog has done really well on it and we've been really happy with it. Is it kind of just trial and error or are there some foods that are better for dogs that need to gain some weight?

He is roughly 116 or somewhere thereabouts. He was leaning a bit on the wall but the vet thought it was pretty close. He's 33 1/2 inches tall at the shoulders. My vet thinks a good weight for him would be somewhere between 140-150.

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  Re: How do I fatten up my super skinny Great Dane???
« Reply #10 on: February 24, 2009, 03:34:51 PM »

patrick
Rank: Paw-meister
Posts: 561

To put weight on I try one of 2 things  First I have had great success with feeding half raw- same amount of kibble but add 2 pounds of raw meat each day  If you are not brave enough to do raw I also use a 'doggy stew'  This is a chicken or something boiled to make a rich broth which I add veges, rice and pasta too.  It is high in fat and carbohydrates thus lots of calories and I mix with the kibble to encourage them to eat more.  Then there is always the 'cookie' diet- just give them a LOT of dog biscuits in addition to their meals.  I do use satin balls as well but decrease the oil in the recipe as my dogs get diarrhea from them.

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  Re: How do I fatten up my super skinny Great Dane???
« Reply #11 on: February 24, 2009, 03:46:47 PM »

ZooCrew
Rank: Tail Wagging Champ
Posts: 3355

Gunther is a leggy dane, and has a lighter build.

He is 34" at the shoulder (which is odd b/c I could have sworn he was 35" for the last 2 yrs.........my boy is shrinking!) and at normal weight is 137, but I'm hoping to get him to an even 140.  That is with him looking lean, but not thin.  He's 130 now and actually doesn't look that bad, other than  his backbone still shows a bit (but he tends to hunch his back too which makes it look worse).  At 150 I think Gunther would look start looking a bit heavy.



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  Re: How do I fatten up my super skinny Great Dane???
« Reply #12 on: February 24, 2009, 06:33:20 PM »

NewDaneMom
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Thanks so much, this is all really good to know. The rescue recommended mixing with rice, but it does make sense that it would fill him up. I should've realized that.

I read the recipe for the Satin Balls. If we do decide to give that a try, are those ingredients (wheat germ and the molasses) things you can just get at the grocery store, or do you need to go to a Whole Foods or something? That probably sounds like a ridiculous question but cooking rice for the dog is about as complicated as I am capable of getting in the kitchen, so this will be an adventure!



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  Re: How do I fatten up my super skinny Great Dane???
« Reply #13 on: February 25, 2009, 01:38:06 AM »

filafan
Rank: Gnawer
Posts: 20


I get jars of wheat germ in the grocery store, usually in the cereal isle, by oatmeal. cream of wheat, mushie stuffs.

Beloved Caislean-chasing squirrels on the other side.

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  Re: How do I fatten up my super skinny Great Dane???
« Reply #14 on: February 25, 2009, 05:51:57 AM »

vmimom2006
Rank: Leader of the Pack
Posts: 406


Hi and welcome. Yep both wheat germ & Molassas can be gotten in the grocery. Athena is my skinny girl 32"/110# and Aurora is a little on the stockier side. I also think it will take some time and thinner is definately better for the joints.

Mom to:
Athena 20 month Blue Great Dane
Aurora 5 yr Blue Merle Great Dane
Baby Tux cat-RIP 6/9/09
Mandy & Millie 10 yr sisters tabbys
Wheet 9 yr black shorthair devil cat
Lucy Lu & Buckley 8 month kitties


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