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Old 12-21-2011, 10:20 PM
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Default A weight discussion: how far is too far?

What is your definition of an ideal weight, and do you think your dog fits that ideal?

Does anyone have any pictures to compare a "fat" dog to a "normal" dog to a "skinny" dog?

Do you think some people take it too far (either way?)

The reason I ask, is because I was looking at pictures of APBTs at an ADBA show, and some of them just looked unhealthily skinny. But maybe I'm just not used to it?

Just so people don't think I'm one of those "OMG YOU CAN FEEL HIS RIBS HE'S EMACIATED" type of people, I think this dog is an acceptable weight for ADBA condition. The pictures I saw had dogs that were MUCH more skinny.

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Old 12-21-2011, 10:35 PM
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Honestly ask 3 different people and you'll get 3 different answers.

This is Izzie in February, she was 19.5lbs or so.

Fatty McFatfat by mandypug, on Flickr

This is Izzie as of 3 weeks ago, at 13.5lbs or so.

IMG_0613-2 by mandypug, on Flickr

According to people in the Pug breed, she was already skinny in the first picture. They'd consider her in the second picture to be emaciated even though you can't see hips, ribs or spine. She's lost 6lbs and that's about as far as i'm going, we're just toning now. I wasn't starving her or super exercising her either, just a small decrease in food and a small increase in activity.

ETA: This is what is considered a good weight for a Pug. He i believe represented the Pug at westminister and pug people raved and raved about how "muscled" and "toned" and "fit" he is.

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Last edited by MandyPug; 12-21-2011 at 11:07 PM.
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Old 12-21-2011, 10:46 PM
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Some people at ADBA trials just withhold food and water for a few days before the show to make the dog look way more conditioned than it is. In anyway sport, you'll find people that take something to an extreme - so if highly conditioned dogs are in, somebody's going to take it too far, naturally. That dog's weight doesn't bother me but I've ADBA dogs that are better muscled, hehe.

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Originally Posted by MandyPug View Post
Honestly ask 3 different people and you'll get 3 different answers.
Yep. Apparently my pup is underweight according to some people on here - meh, I'm happy with her. Go figure.
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Old 12-21-2011, 11:01 PM
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Snipe came to me fat imo. I had to really work to feel her ribs, and she was approaching tube-shaped from above. She was 26lbs.




A few weeks later we had dropped weight but still weren't very muscled. At 23lbs:


And now she's nicely muscled. 6+ ribs are visible when she moves, which is a bit on the light side for my preferences, I'd rather it be around 2-3. She's 24.5lbs now.






In general, I find that my dogs look best when they are on the low end of normal on most body condition score charts. This means that when they are moving I can see a few ribs, but not all of them, all 4 have easily palpable ribs and hips with a sliiiight fat layer, and the spine is palpable but not visible.
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Old 12-21-2011, 11:02 PM
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I think ideal weight varies greatly from dog to dog, owner to owner so on.

I'll be honest, I've never seen a dog in person (that wasn't ill) that I would classify as "too skinny" other than a friend of ours greyhound/collie mix. And he stayed underweight because he hated to eat and in turn he's stayed very healthy for a very long time. He's in his upper teens now and only in the last year or so has really felt the pains of arthritis.

ANYWAYS, before I digress even more: I tend to see either over weight dogs and/or under muscled dogs. And I would much prefer to see a little under the ideal weight rather than over it.

So I guess my definition of ideal for my dogs is on the lean side. I don't like a lot of rib covering and I like to see muscle. If I just have the lack of fat without muscle (assuming they are being exercised) I would worry they aren't eating enough.

Traveler pretty much fits my ideal for him. When you put your hands on him his ribs are easily felt, his spine isn't seen but it can be found and felt easily. His hip bones are a little gutty but they always seem to be even when he was carrying more weight than I like.


IMG_2352 by Traveling Koolie, on Flickr

And I like that even though he's thin he's got muscle


IMG_2970 by Traveling Koolie, on Flickr

Kaylee on the other hand is NOT at her or my ideal. She's fat, she's always been fat and even when she's biking 7 miles a day and running off leash she's fat, just more muscular.

Her ribs are padded and she doesn't have as much of a waist and tuck up as I would like (some of that is the spay belly skin though)


IMGP9857 by Traveling Koolie, on Flickr
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Old 12-21-2011, 11:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MandyPug View Post

According to people in the Pug breed, she was already skinny in the first picture. They'd consider her in the second picture to be emaciated even though you can't see hips, ribs or spine. She's lost 6lbs and that's about as far as i'm going, we're just toning now. I wasn't starving her or super exercising her either, just a small decrease in food and a small increase in activity.
I think she looks great! I've never seen an even remotely fit pug before!

And I definitely agree that it is a subjective answer. I tend to like dogs on the thinner side of normal, while most like dogs on the obese side of normal

And huh, I didn't know that about withholding food and water. That...sucks. A lot.

And yeah, that's not the best muscled dog, but that was the first picture I saw on Google images haha. I agree that there are much better...Lilbit comes to mind.
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Old 12-21-2011, 11:04 PM
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There's a little variation depending on breed. I mean, Juno is deep-chested with a dramatic tuck up... obviously not all dogs are built to look like that.

In general I think you should be able to feel ribs just by running your hands along them (and I mean gently, not having to PUSH in lol). You want a thin layer of fat covering them. But I don't want to see ribs jutting out, and I don't want to see hip bones.

Juno is at my ideal. In this photo, it's hard to tell cuz the lighting sucks but you can see the outline of a couple ribs. You can also see the end of her ribcage and an obvious waist. Oh, and thigh muscles.


My brother's dog used to be like, emaciated skinny. Ribs, hip bones, spine sticking out. She was deemed healthy by a vet, she was eating... there was no explanation for why she was so freaking skinny. She's 5 years old now and is finally filled out and normal looking, but that just occurred within the past year or so.
Here's a picture of her from behind, she's the small one on the left--I don't know if you can appreciate how bony she looks, or if I only notice it because I know it's there...


And a side shot which probably doesn't really show it either


Lucy is slightly overweight (better now than she used to be) but she's so floofy that you don't really notice it in pictures.

And YES, people absolutely go too far in both directions.
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Old 12-21-2011, 11:09 PM
Saeleofu Saeleofu is offline
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Izzie looks FANTASTIC!

I think Gavroche is at an ideal weight now. Still working on conditioning, but from a year ago the difference is HUGE. He was at 51 pounds as a low, and is now 54 pounds. The only real difference is muscle. He topped out at 67 pounds, and althoug most people wouldn't say he was fat, he really was. But a somewhat fat boxer still looks skinny to some people because there's still a significant tuck.

This was 2+ years ago at 57 pounds, what I thought was an ideal weight at the time. Now I think he looks a little thick in that picture, and not really toned.



This is around 65 pounds, and I think he looks terribly fat. His muscle tone also really sucks. This was around a year and a half to 2 years ago. He was definitely hypothyroid by this point, I just didn't realize it. He was constantly bouncing from 57 pounds to 65 pounds - if I fed him more than 1 1/3 cups a day he'd balloon up (eventually he was eating less than a cup a day and STILL gaining)



This was maybe 9 months ago at around 55 pounds, but after losing 12 pounds and not being toned he looks thin and flabby



This was a few months ago at around 52 pounds but a little toned



This was around the same time, from the top



And because I <3 them, his shoulder muscles from about 4 months ago - he's even more muscle-y now <3 <3


So it has a lot to do with breed, muscle tone, build, etc. To me Gavroche looks thinner in his 55 pound picture than he does in his 52 pound picture, just from lack of muscle tone and flabbiness. He also has his spine sticking out at an ideal weight - and that's one reason I thoguht 57 pounds was good, since it was the point where his back bone didn't stick out. But really, he's just built weird. And he's not as dramatic in the tuck department as most boxers. I still really, really suspect there's some American bulldog in him.
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Old 12-21-2011, 11:13 PM
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I think this shows some of the consistency in the body condition I like.



Of my dogs, Kes is the hardest to build muscle on - and he was neutered at 14 weeks, go figure. He's *finally* getting nice muscling now that he's 3yo and we're doing more swimming, schutzhund, etc. regularly.

Ziva is fairly inactive but does sport a nice physique naturally I think. Both Aeri and Snipe are building nice muscle without a lot of work, too, but they are more active in general and young intact dogs on top of that.
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Old 12-21-2011, 11:15 PM
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Thanks for the pictures everyone, I really appreciate them!

Linds, I think I'm the same as you as to what I prefer. I like to easily feel bone, and see the last few ribs, especially if they are moving. Fat dogs make me want to cry, which is awful, since my parents keep Maggie at an atrocious weight, because God forbid a dog have a tuck up.

And Kaylee looks like she is built like Reecie. Was she spayed young? I've noticed that dogs who are altered young generally have the same type of build. Reecie is a good weight, you can feel her ribs, spine, and hips easily, but you can't tell in pictures because of how awkwardly proportioned she is.

And, on the topic of underweight vs undermuscled, how would you guys describe this guy? He was just brought into the shelter I volunteer at. Emaciated, underweight, undermuscled, or a combination?



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