Friday, August 8, 2008

Losing Weight


We've been told by our agility trainer that Loki needs to lose some weight.

He's 57.5 pounds and a bit chunky for a Vizsla. I definitely grab more skin/fat off his neck/shoulder area than I really should be.

Honestly, I don't understand. He gets more than an hour of off-leash running at the dog park each day. We don't overfeed him - he gets 1 pound of raw in the morning and 1.5 cups of Innova Evo at night. Maybe he just has slow metabolism. Who knows.

My solution is to teach him how to use the treadmill. We've made decent progress so far. Loki's no longer afraid of the machine and will even sit on it when it's not moving. He's shown curiousity for the machine while it's on, and I've taught him to put one paw on it while it's moving. I can't figure out the next step though. Short of dragging him on the thing (and possibly scarring him for life), I'm out of ideas. Been doing a bit of reading online about how to train, so it's possible I'll have some video footage in a few weeks. Stay tuned...!

For now, you all get these two new pictures:

(Don't kill me for the bowtie Jason!)


Rocket said...

he doesn't look very chunky to me! How tall are you Loki?

Anonymous said...

Does the Joker know Loki borrowed his bowtie? ;-)

Anonymous said...

Dennis weighs between 51-53 pounds. He eats 1 1/3 cups of premium kibble in the morning, and about the same amount again in the evening. If he gets canned in the evening, I give him one regular sized can. If he gets raw green tripe, he gets about 1/2 pound of it for a meal. I will adjust the amounts of food up or down a tad depending on how he looks.

Premium kibbles like Evo are very calorie dense. You can keep your pound of raw in the morning, and cut down on the kibble. I don't think his metabolism is slow. That just sounds like too many calories. While I only dabble in raw, I have been researching it, and it seems that they should eat 2-3% of their body weight in raw per day (not per meal) depending on whether they need to lose, maintain, or gain weight. . Kibble is more calorie dense than raw because there is not much moisture in it.

If he is overweight, then he is getting too many calories for his size/activity level unless he has a thyroid problem which can be detected with a simple blood test.

We have been giving some meals as a commercial raw meat blend (Primal brand). Here is their feeding chart which I find helpful:

Hope This Helps,

Dennis's Mom

Anonymous said...

Here's another link to a raw feeding chart (which also includes RMB) in the calculations. This chart does not apply to kibble amounts.

-Dennis's Mom

Loki said...

Loki is 25 inches. The trainer was basing his "chunkiness" off the chunks of skin she could grab. I was under the impression that they could get up to 60 pounds and it'd still be okay, but after seeing all the "fat" she grabbed, I realized that it might do him some good to lose some weight.

Thanks for all the information Denni's mom. I feel so bad for cutting down Loki's food, since he always looks/acts hungry, but I guess that's a dog for you! The last time I cut down the Evo by half a cup, he actually lost 3 pounds in a week... I'm not sure if that's healthy or not though and that's what got me worried about permanently reducing his meal-size.

I will keep everyone updated on everything.

Rocket said...

Rocket is 25" tall and his weight runs between 65-68lbs. But even at 68lbs he doesn't look chunky, you can grab plenty of skin on him still but his waistline from the top view looks just fine.

I'll try and take some pics from the top view

Anonymous said...

I think weight all depends on the individual dog. Even two dogs the same height could have different builds and different healthy weights. Dennis is 22 inches at the shoulder and has a naturally stocky/muscular build. He generally weighs between 51 and 53 pounds. Tucker is 21 inches at the shoulder (a real small boy!), has a slimmer build, and weighs 39-40 pounds.

Losing three pounds in a week sounds like a lot. If you think he needs to lose weight, just cut it back a smidgeon at a time until you find the right balance.

-Dennis's Mom

Anonymous said...

Hi again! : )

With permission from the author, I e-mailed you a copy of a great article on weight written by the woman who headed up Northern California Vizlsa Rescue for many years. She is also a professional dog trainer. Hope you find it helpful!

-Dennis's Mom