Heathside Veterinary Surgery Blog

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What is an Ideal Weight for your Dog?

Many of us are unsure what a healthy weight for our dog is and if that is the case a visit to the vets should be on the cards. Many practices have Weight Clinics run by registered veterinary nurses and this would be a good place to check that your dog is at an ideal size  for his breed, type and age. 

So what should an 'ideal' dog's weight be? Far better to think of condition than weight, as a dense or fluffy coat can greatly alter your perspective of your dog. 

1 - Ribs

Can you feel your dog's ribs? How easily? If you can detect a minimal layer of fat over your dogs ribs then this would be ideal.

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If however his ribs are obvious and his backbone and hips are proud then he is underweight and veterinary attention should be sought. If you cannot feel your dogs ribs but can feel a good layering of fat then I am not afraid to tell you that your dog is overweight and you should seek help for him.

2 - Waist.

Standing over your dog and looking down on him from above can you see a waistline? Is there a distinct going in of the body after the ribs and going out again before the hips? If yes then your dog is likely to be at his ideal size.

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If your dog lacks muscle around his shoulders and thighs then he is likely to be under his ideal size. Built like a barrel? Fat pads along the length of his back starting at his neck and ending at his tail then your dog is likely to be over his ideal size.

3 - Tummy.

Can you see a distinct tummy tuck towards your dogs stifle when you look at him from the side?Then he is probably at his ideal size. Or does he have a severely tucked in look? Time for the vet! Maybe his tummy bulges outwards and noticeably sags downwards, then your dog could be obese.

The pictures I am using to demonstrate the ideal condition in a dog are two fold, one she is in  ideal condition and two her build/body type demonstrates perfectly what you need to look out for. Sarah is young, active and as you can see in great shape; she exudes vitality. Fed a balanced diet and exercised daily Sarah is on her way to a long and healthy life.

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Heathside always welcomes you to use our weighing scales so that we can  monitor your dogs weight; this becomes helpful should you notice a marked increase or decrease in your pets weight. Please do give reception the weight and we will gladly put this on your dogs records. Should you have any concerns then lets us know.

You may not worry about a couple of kilos gained or lost here or there but from your vets view of your dogs' health and wellbeing...size really can matter!