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I'm at the end of my rope with Skipper on this. He is so stinkin' ribby right now he really does look like I starve him. The vet tells me to "feed him smaller meals more frequently" and "he's eating enough to keep himself alive, he'll gain weight at as he gets older and less active". What she doesn't seem to understand is that he honestly doesn't eat more than half a cup to 1 cup of food a day no matter how it's presented--even if it's canned, which I tried for a while.

I can often get him to eat more if I hold him on a leash and hand feed him kibble-by-kibble but I don't feel like this is a great situation in the long run.

Is there a supplement that dogs love, that will help him gain weight? He is on a good kibble that my other two love as well so I don't want to switch his food--I've tried him on grain free, and it doesn't make a difference. He's been on wheat/corn/soy free his whole life and will remain so. I'm looking for something to add to it to get him to eat more, or to get more nutrition and fat.

He's lived like this since he hit adolescence at about 6 months--he's fifteen months now so it's obviously not killing him, but I am honestly too scared to take him out anywhere except his agility lessons right now for fear someone will report me :( I don't feel comfortable posting photos to the blog I normally love to maintain, and generally just feel miserable.

Don't get me wrong--he's happy as a flipping lark with his bird-like food consumption. But something needs to change.

I've included photos because I've been part of this community a long time and I know ya'll won't jump to conclusions. I just want the severity of the situation to be realized so that it's clear I'm not in the "If it's not obese it's starved" American stereotype. He's gnawing a bully stick in the photos (the only way I can get him to hold still, haha) which is why he looks kind of peeved. He kept hopping around from my bed to his bed, clearly not understanding why I wanted to take awkward, unflattering photos at such an inconvenient time :rolleyes:

I try to make light of it as much as I can, but this bothers me a lot. Really would love some suggestions.

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My goodness he really is tiny isnt he! He doesnt look so bad from the sides but you can really notice it from the top view - and being a small dog Im sure thats what most people see...

This is not a problem I have ever had - all my dogs would eat anything. But have you tried maybe adding some sort of stock to his kibble, to make it a bit tastier? If you could warm it up too I imagine it would smell even better, and may entice him to eat more?

But I suppose he is eating enough to survive, and seems happy enough, so there may not be a lot you can do. I remember back when I used to watch Cesar Milan there was one episode that had a doberman that just would not eat much, and they tried a whole heap of stuff!! Hopefully thats not the case and you manage to fatten your boy up a bit though...
 

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I'm at the end of my rope with Skipper on this. He is so stinkin' ribby right now he really does look like I starve him. The vet tells me to "feed him smaller meals more frequently" and "he's eating enough to keep himself alive, he'll gain weight at as he gets older and less active". What she doesn't seem to understand is that he honestly doesn't eat more than half a cup to 1 cup of food a day no matter how it's presented--even if it's canned, which I tried for a while.

I can often get him to eat more if I hold him on a leash and hand feed him kibble-by-kibble but I don't feel like this is a great situation in the long run.

Is there a supplement that dogs love, that will help him gain weight? He is on a good kibble that my other two love as well so I don't want to switch his food--I've tried him on grain free, and it doesn't make a difference. He's been on wheat/corn/soy free his whole life and will remain so. I'm looking for something to add to it to get him to eat more, or to get more nutrition and fat.

He's lived like this since he hit adolescence at about 6 months--he's fifteen months now so it's obviously not killing him, but I am honestly too scared to take him out anywhere except his agility lessons right now for fear someone will report me :( I don't feel comfortable posting photos to the blog I normally love to maintain, and generally just feel miserable.

Don't get me wrong--he's happy as a flipping lark with his bird-like food consumption. But something needs to change.

I've included photos because I've been part of this community a long time and I know ya'll won't jump to conclusions. I just want the severity of the situation to be realized so that it's clear I'm not in the "If it's not obese it's starved" American stereotype. He's gnawing a bully stick in the photos (the only way I can get him to hold still, haha) which is why he looks kind of peeved. He kept hopping around from my bed to his bed, clearly not understanding why I wanted to take awkward, unflattering photos at such an inconvenient time :rolleyes:

I try to make light of it as much as I can, but this bothers me a lot. Really would love some suggestions.

Skipper is adorable . I love his color . Here is something that just may work since you only want something to supplement his current diet . I have heard good things about this one . Here is the link .
https://www.valleyvet.com/ct_detail.html?pgguid=30e0710a-7b6a-11d5-a192-00b0d0204ae5&sfb=1&itemguid=54678244-3b74-4062-af83-a136049cfcc6&utm_content=35687&ccd=IFP003&mr:trackingCode=C842E364-3C81-E211-BA78-001B21631C34&mr:referralID=NA&mr:device=c&mr:adType=plaonline&mr:ad=42095152483&mr:keyword=&mr:match=&mr:tid=kwd-86811835363&mr:ploc=1018948&mr:iloc=&mr:store=&mr:filter=86811835363&gclid=Cj0KEQjw75yxBRD78uqEnuG-5vcBEiQAQbaxSOU8cE8KW0ppJUUrnfX5xpFJoHBa0iKwHeaVRr_243oaAhEN8P8HAQ
 

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Has he been tested for parasites, had blood and thyroid checked?

Maybe you can find a food that has higher calories since he doesn't eat very much. What have you tried to add in his food to entice appetite?

I've used satin balls to help put weight on a thin foster before. Here's the link" Satin Balls
 

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If you can rule out medical issues maybe try adding a high quality wet food to his diet. Asha was underweight when we got her she got multiple small meals a day of dog biscuits and wet food.
 

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He had bloodwork, I think his thyroid was checked in that but I'm not 100% sure. We have another vet visit at the beginning of 2016 so I'll double-check with the vet then. No parasites.
I'll try the calorie supplement and the satin balls, thank you both for the suggestions!

I've tried raw rabbit and chicken which he didn't like. He did like it if I boiled it though. I haven't tried raw beef yet, so maybe that will work! He loves cooked venison but I don't have a ready, parasite-free supply of that here. He's gets a half oz of freeze dried raw added to his food each day and most days he'll eat that but lately he's gone off it as well.

It's almost like unless it's a novelty food, he doesn't want to eat it. He'll eat nearly anything the first time I give it to him, but after that it's a crapshoot.

This week I've started 2 boiled eggs a day and he's actually eating at least half of each one if I hand-feed.

As far as the protein in his kibble, I've done grain-free turkey, grain-free beef and grain-free whitefish. Right now he's on Salmon and Potato because that is what my other two do best on and nothing's made a difference with him.

I had him on a high-performance chicken based food when he was a puppy, but because Quenya is so allergic and loses fur at the drop of a hat I've since tried to keep our house chicken-free aside from a few freeze dried or baked treats for Skip's agility.

What happens is he'll gain weight, and then lose it the next week. Then gain the weight back, stop eating again, and lose it. So he does fluctuate but it's so frequent that he's on a skinny week he seems skinny all the time.

He does sometimes try to eat horse poop, and I've wondered if he's poisoning himself on it somehow, though my vet doesn't think so since all his levels came back normal.

His dad has the same tall, lean frame but carries weight and looks good. His mom is stockier but it doesn't seem that Skip inherited much of her build. So he does have a naturally lean frame, but his ribs need to be covered. If I can get all his ribs covered, I'll be happy.
 
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did you test if there's something wrong with him medically...like parasites, problems with the pancreas or Hyperthyroidism?

feeding small portions with a higher fat content (yoghurt or meat with more fat in it) can help, if he likes it. Some say, mixing the food with stuff like potatoes, noodles, oatmeal or rice can help...if he eats it.
giving him meat broth (home made...maggi has too much salt) to drink instead of water can also help and most dogs love it.

sancho is also more on the skinny side. ^^"
according to the type and size he should weight ca. 5 kgs more (purebred male DCs havearound 50-65 kg...sancho has 40 on good days). But he seems healthy so perhaps it's just because he's a mix.
 
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I forgot to ask, have you checked the inside of his mouth for any loose teeth or sores? Maybe even touch his throat area just to make sure he's not in any pain or anything that may be causing him to not want to eat a lot.
 

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you could try boiling hamburger and rice and see if he eats that. You could try adding pumpkin to his food. Have you heard of Open Farm? Very expensive but very good food. Or TOW (Taste of the wild) Good food lower price then open farm, grain free, and lots of different flavors that you could switch easily.
 

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Hm, I was going to suggest raw, but it seems like you've tried it. What about trying to add some full-fat cottage cheese to his meals? Levi loves it, makes him wolf down his food. :)
 

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I think that when he hits around 2 years old he'll start to fill out and look awesome.

I have a friend who's dog looked exactly like that at Skipper's age. She was very happy, very active to the point of being hyper, she was rail thin, and she never wanted to eat a lot. The dog was so thin that she looked like a rescue dog and if I didn't know my friend I'd have said that they were neglecting the her. Nothing special was ever done to put weight on her, my friend just free fed her and waited, now she looks terrific, she's lean but not bony, and still active as can be.

I suspect some dogs just go through a gangley teenage phase where everything they eat goes towards either growing or energy.
 
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He's unnuetered correct? Testosterone can burn fat faster the you can get food in his mouth. My trainer that has a border collie that is the same way. I would keep feeding him the recommended amount, I think he looks lean but not malnourished by any means. He's muscular.
 
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The super short hair doesn't help either. My terrier mix looked the same at his age, but since she has a wire coat it looked less extreme unless she got wet.

I agree with the others, he'll fill out as he ages :)
 

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I doubt the horse poop would do anything, two of mine eat it almost every day :rolleyes: I try to stop them but it's an uphill battle.

I would do the best you can, but most likely he'll fill out as he gets older. As long as he has energy, some dogs just stay on the skinny side. My JRT is one of them.
 

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have you tried lamb or beef dry food? if possible look at fat percentage and see what it is. id go with 17% fat and a fatty meat not lean ad try that. has the vet ruled out EPI? a member recently thought the dog had it but vet said didnt but gave this supplement and dog is alot healthier weight and gained!
 

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Leia is skinny too but I can't get her to eat more. She eats once a day even though she has a full bowl of food available to her.

The vet has said he wants to see her with a little more fat and recommended this. I ordered it but it hasn't arrived. I'll update in a few weeks with my experience

 

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I also forgot to mention that I had problem keeping weight on Hank a while back, even though I was feeding him 4-5 cups a day (he's only 45lbs!!)

The vet recommended this digestive enzyme and it's helped a lot and don't have to feed so many cups a day anymore.

 

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I don't know if this will help but my dog Katie was put on steroids for allergies. The medicine made her eat more and she gained a lot of weight. She is a doberman and she did not need the extra weight. After she got off the medicine she never did take the weight back off. I sure hope that you find an answer for your dog's problem. Our pets are very important to us and in some ways they are like our kids.
 
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