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CharbearsMa

Body composition faults/ An alternative to a Vet, please!!!

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Tassie   
41 minutes ago, DogsAndTheMob said:

Am I correct in thinking you have a Labrador? Here’s a delightful item on Lab anatomy: https://www.salabclub.com.au/lab-anatomy

More seriously, labradors seem to vary a lot in body type, so it may be useful to talk to people in your nearest Labrador Retriever Club - and to your breeder of course. You may also find it informative to go to some conformation shows and have a look at pups of around the same age. (In NSW, at least, there are lots of labradors entered.) The Dogsonline Event Diary is starting to display the 2019 events. https://www.dogzonline.com.au/event-diary/list.asp?state=SA&type=CH

 

@DogsAndTheMob  loved the Lab Anatomy :rofl:.    Don't know about in other states, but down here there is quite a divergence between the build of the show labs and the working line ones, at least the ones I see.   The WL ones seem to be a bit finer overall, and certainly more lean and shapely .. and that's build, not just condition.

 

@CharbearsMa    I was thinking about the age of your puppy, and the fact that puppies will tend to change a lot at times, both in their body, and in their food and activity requirements, depending on growth spurts.  Sometimes you'd swear you can see your puppy growing as you watch him/her .. their bones will lengthen, and they look quite leggy, then their muscles and ligaments catch up .. hence the need for care in forced puppy exercise.  So again .. another reason for not stressing too much.  I like to see a bit of shape (tuck in, tuck up) in pups right through their growth phase but I'm not really firm about it until they are older puppies.  

 

 

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1 hour ago, Tassie said:

I was thinking about the age of your puppy, and the fact that puppies will tend to change a lot at times, both in their body, and in their food and activity requirements, depending on growth spurts.  Sometimes you'd swear you can see your puppy growing as you watch him/her .. their bones will lengthen, and they look quite leggy, then their muscles and ligaments catch up .. hence the need for care in forced puppy exercise.  So again .. another reason for not stressing too much.  I like to see a bit of shape (tuck in, tuck up) in pups right through their growth phase but I'm not really firm about it until they are older puppies.  

yes!!

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asal   

MISTY my 14 yr girl

 

asked me to send everyone a Merry Christmas wish and dont comment on her fuller figure please :-)

 

she is on a diet.

 

Image may contain: dog and outdoor

 

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I haven’t been given a set weight, I’m supposed to use the body composition chart alone.

Edited by CharbearsMa

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On 24/12/2018 at 4:43 PM, DogsAndTheMob said:

Am I correct in thinking you have a Labrador? Here’s a delightful item on Lab anatomy: https://www.salabclub.com.au/lab-anatomy

More seriously, labradors seem to vary a lot in body type, so it may be useful to talk to people in your nearest Labrador Retriever Club - and to your breeder of course. You may also find it informative to go to some conformation shows and have a look at pups of around the same age. (In NSW, at least, there are lots of labradors entered.) The Dogsonline Event Diary is starting to display the 2019 events. https://www.dogzonline.com.au/event-diary/list.asp?state=SA&type=CH

 

Edited by CharbearsMa

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1 hour ago, asal said:

MISTY my 14 yr girl

 

asked me to send everyone a Merry Christmas wish and dont comment on her fuller figure please :-)

 

she is on a diet.

 

Image may contain: dog and outdoor

 

Misty!!! You are a babe. Merry Christmas, darling girl. Thank you for popping by to say hello :) 

I hope Santa spoils you rotten :) Xxoo 

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I’m going to contact his breeder. They do change every day and it makes the most sense to contact the person who would know exactly what to expect as they see it constantly.

 

 

 

Edited by CharbearsMa
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What a lovely youngster!

 

Did he have a bath so he was beautifully clean for the vet? Baths tend to make their coats puff out, which can make them look heavier than they would if the coat was lying flat.

 

A simple prescription: lots of hugs and cuddles, so you get a sense of his normal shape and how it changes day to day - then feed him a little less if he’s getting chubbier, and more if he’s getting lean or going through a growth spurt.

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The only advice I can add, is BREATHE.

Your posts show a great passion for wanting to learn, but you also need to know when to just step back, breathe and trust your judgement. Sometimes there can just be too much information. 

Your boy is lovely and labs can be decieving with their build.

 

 

For an example of information  overload, I have significant issues with my fish tank at the minute which are causing me crazy amounts of stress,  i spoke to 3 different people in the last 24 hours. two gave similar information (one person I trust the other I don't) to someone I thought had *all* the answers. If I researched it, I'd be none the wiser (probably rocking in a corner) as it's an unusual issue, so I just had to stop, take a step back and trust my gut and weigh up what I feel is best. If that doesn't work,  then I'll  try something else.

 

My point is, with things like this, you just have to roll with it, trial and error. No two dogs are the same. My mum and I both have vizslas,  two completely different builds, and feeding needs. My boy gets up to 2 cups a day and still looks lean, my mum's girl looks like a whale on that much food now, yet a few years ago it was a different story, no matter how much she ate she was skinny (to us, but different vets had different opinions).

 

You will learn what's normal for him and what isn't, I can tell in a glance now if mine are getting chubby or if it's just a bloat tummy that day,  but it took time. Trust yourself a bit more, but if you still aren't confident, be guided by the breeder who knows the dogs.

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He had been spruced up, yes.

 

Post Christmas I believe I will call his breeder, apologise for the hassle and ask what she recommends. 

I’d rather not bother someone who l know works around the clock raising these guys, but my kid can’t be starving.

 

Edited by CharbearsMa

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7 minutes ago, CharbearsMa said:

His behaviour has rapidly deteriorated though since Saturday when I began slightly reducing food intake. Sat night he wasn’t quite as sprightly. Sun morning he was sleepy and could barely trudge after me. Sun night, he seemed to tire physically and mentally much easier than normal and was unable to go for a walk. 

This intrigues me .

What exactly is he being fed ? brand and quantity , etc .  
I have never seen a healthy pup/dog react as you describe  from a slight reduction in food,  or from even missing 24 hr's worth of meals ! 

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I get what you’re saying. I’ll bug his breeder. 

 

I’m very sorry to hear about your fish tank troubles :( I hope it gets sorted! Not that it’s the same, but I used to have a pet sea snail that would escape the tank and climb the ceiling to drop into the cereal bowls - fish are harder than many people imagine! 

Edited by CharbearsMa

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karen15   

Ok, take a breather :) the vet didn't say he was obese. I presume the scale was 1-9, if 5 is perfect. A 6 on that scale isn't obese, it's just "good" condition. It's only slightly over 5. If he's sleeping a lot at present, he's probably growing. They store up energy then grow.

 

I find my westie is finicky with kibble too. He would prefer to get kibble from a toy. Unfortunately the cocker collects all food toys, sits on her bed with them and gets the food out by jamming her tongue in. Food either comes out or ends up a sodden mess i have to try to remove.

 

This is a link to really good description on each step of the scale  https://vcahospitals.com/know-your-pet/body-condition-scores

Edited by karen15
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Rebanne   
11 hours ago, CharbearsMa said:

 

Actually the most heartbreaking thing is that with less food, he CANNOT walk or play as he is exhausted and cranky, and can barely sit up for long :( he needs food to fuel him so he can move! :( 

 

 

 

He be having a full health check up if he was mine. What you have written above does not sound like a healthy puppy.

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As a Lab person, the only thing I'd add is that when in doubt, it's better too thin than too fat. Vets have told me for years that my old girl was OK on the weight scale.  She started going downhill as she approached 14.  The new vet suggested taking some weight off, which I have done.  Four months later, she's OK without pain meds, though muscle atrophy still leaves her wobbly. 

I'll see if I can find the reference.  One of the most impressive feeding trials I've ever seen was done with Labbies, starting as puppies and going for 10 YEARS!! It compared restricted calories (20% less if I remember correctly) to a normal diet of dry kibble.  Decent sample size.  Long term, the lean dogs did markedly better on all health indices. 

P. S. The article is javma_220_9_1315.pdf.  It came up as #1 when I Google "restricted food intake study dogs"... 25% reduction... I remembered wrong. 

Edited by sandgrubber
Clarity
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10 hours ago, CharbearsMa said:

His behaviour has rapidly deteriorated though since Saturday when I began slightly reducing food intake.

 

Is it possible that you have an extremely intuitive and loving dog who is reacting to your anxiety?

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8 hours ago, DogsAndTheMob said:

Is it possible that you have an extremely intuitive and loving dog who is reacting to your anxiety?

if a 5 mth old is reacting  to that extreme ..I would be mightily concerned ...as would I be if a small change in diet altered energy /motivation levels to  that very noticeable  extent .

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Apologies for the late reply. I’m actually just not going to be concerned, I may not be a vet but I have cared for dogs my whole life and whilst I absolutely will be doing my research (because if you’re going to read anything, why not read about dogs??), I trust that I know enough about their wellbeing. I’m calling his breeder and in the meantime, going to do what works for him. 

I do like his vet very much, but if needed I’ll change to his breeder’s vet.

I may just need a chat and some pics to bring to my vet though.

 

 

But first thing will be a talk with his breeder while I enjoy my pup, regardless of whether he’s a Flo Jo or a Fatty (and hey, even she was heavier than preferable for awhile - and still kicking butt!). 

 

 

 

Edited by CharbearsMa

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My kid may just be an extreme outlier re diet (that’s  a good read if anyone is interested :) ).

Edited by CharbearsMa

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