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  #1  
Old 10-07-2008, 06:46 PM
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Domestika Domestika is offline
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Default Is this myth true?

Is it true that in order to predict a dog's adult weight you double their weight at 4 months?

Has this actually been true for anyone?

Cause my GSD is almost 4 months and she weighs 11kg...around 23 pounds. There is NO WAY she's going to be 46 pounds fully grown. I don't think there's ever been a purebred adult shepherd under 50 pounds, for a start. And her parents were both around 90 pounds sooooo, I'm guessing this myth is FALSE?

Shed some light, please?
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Old 10-07-2008, 06:52 PM
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I have small dogs, so I'm not much help, I'm sure, but my dogs are close to that. Ash I know was 9 pounds when neutered at 4 months and is now 17 or so. Anna was around 5.5 pounds at 4 months and is now 10. I'm sure it can't be universally true since large dogs take longer to grow and some breeds are slower, etc.
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Old 10-07-2008, 07:10 PM
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Not sure they always work (and would not expect them to) but I have heard a few different "formulas" for predicting eventual adult size in GSD puppies.

One says double the 17 week weight for a male or the 15 week weight for a female.

Another formula says: At 8 weeks, a male GSD puppy of 20 pounds or more will be 100 lbs. or more as an adult. An eight week old female puppy of less than 15 pounds at 8 weeks will be about 55 - 60 lbs. as an adult. (But it seems crazy to try predicting adult size from any 8 week old puppy!)

Others aren't 'formulae' per se, but have also heard large paws indicate a larger adult and larger ears usually end up on a larger head which suggests a larger adult overall. Another of these is that although there may be exceptions, female GSDs tend toward the size of their litter's dam while males will tend toward size of their sire.

EDIT:
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Originally Posted by Domestika View Post
Cause my GSD is almost 4 months and she weighs 11kg...around 23 pounds. There is NO WAY she's going to be 46 pounds fully grown.
Nova's had digestive problems as a pup though, right? (Giardia or coccidia?) Even if "weight predictors" work at all it seems that would certainly throw off any estimates in her case.

Last edited by TheGoldenRetriever; 10-07-2008 at 07:26 PM.
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Old 10-07-2008, 08:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheGoldenRetriever View Post
Another formula says: At 8 weeks, a male GSD puppy of 20 pounds or more will be 100 lbs. or more as an adult. An eight week old female puppy of less than 15 pounds at 8 weeks will be about 55 - 60 lbs. as an adult. (But it seems crazy to try predicting adult size from any 8 week old puppy!)

Nova's had digestive problems as a pup though, right? (Giardia or coccidia?) Even if "weight predictors" work at all it seems that would certainly throw off any estimates in her case.
20 pounds at 8 weeks?? That's craziness. She wasn't even 10 pounds at 8 weeks! Though...I am starting to realise that she's very small for her age. I remembered back to our other GSD who was 42 pounds when we got him at 4 months... Nova will be 4 months in a bit over a week.

Yes, she does have some type of digestive problem. She recently tested positive for campylobacter so we're treating her for that. But it's unlikely that that is the only problem. More likely, she has some other underlying illness that just made it easier for the campylobacter to get out of hand. When we fix this bacterial imbalance we'll still be left with an underlying problem of some kind...is my guess.

I asked my vet if he thought having diarrhea for 6 weeks while she's in prime growing time would affect her size down the road and he said no. But...dang, she's seeming really tiny now. :/ It's becoming very obviously that she is just a sickly dog. She has rashes, ear infections, allergies all in addition to her stomach upset so I don't hold out a lot of hope for her being a big, healthy girl as she matures. Unfortunately.
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Old 10-07-2008, 08:06 PM
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So far that theory has worked with all of my dogs. Thunder (German Shepherd) was just under 30 pounds at 4 months old and is now 57 pounds at 6 years old. Scooter was 20 pounds at 4 months old and is 40 pounds now at almost 2 years. All of my other dogs have been pretty close to double their 4 month weight as well.
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Old 10-08-2008, 08:40 AM
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Don't know about that formula, but 55lbs is still standard for a female GSD. I was just at a wedding this weekend with two of my females, 58 and 63 pounds and everyone thought they were so tiny, then again, none of them could believe how fast and agile they were either. We're so used to seeing huge out of standard dogs tha when some come along that are what was intended people can't believe it. 90lbs is far too big for a female, and 88lbs is supposed to be the max for males, but a little give and take on the weight is OK, but if you're much over 90lbs, that is too big for my taste.
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Old 10-08-2008, 10:49 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by release the hounds View Post
Don't know about that formula, but 55lbs is still standard for a female GSD. I was just at a wedding this weekend with two of my females, 58 and 63 pounds and everyone thought they were so tiny, then again, none of them could believe how fast and agile they were either. We're so used to seeing huge out of standard dogs tha when some come along that are what was intended people can't believe it. 90lbs is far too big for a female, and 88lbs is supposed to be the max for males, but a little give and take on the weight is OK, but if you're much over 90lbs, that is too big for my taste.
I would normally agree... But my breeder breeds very healthy (and large) working dogs. Schutzhund, Search and Rescue, some of her dogs have gone into the RCMP, etc. So their size doesn't hinder them and they certainly aren't unhealthy or disadvantaged by their extra bulk.

If they were huge and couldn't perform the tasks the breed is meant to be able to perform then I would for sure say that's inappropriate. But if both large and small Shepherds can do the same things, it comes down to an aesthetic. I personally prefer larger Shepherds...though I will admit that our 92 pound male (from the same breeder - 11 years old now) is too big for my taste. He's just an enormous dog.

Though I would find it odd if a 85 pound female and 90 pound male produced a [less than] 50 pound female, which mine is gearing up to be. That's a head scratcher.
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Old 10-08-2008, 11:31 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Domestika View Post
20 pounds at 8 weeks?? That's craziness. She wasn't even 10 pounds at 8 weeks!
LOL ... my first thought too, it's how I heard that particular formula though. Still think it's nuts to try to judge from 8 wks. old. But from other posts it does seem the 4 month theory may have some vailidity. Interesting.

Quote:
Originally Posted by release the hounds View Post
We're so used to seeing huge out of standard dogs tha when some come along that are what was intended people can't believe it. 90lbs is far too big for a female, and 88lbs is supposed to be the max for males, but a little give and take on the weight is OK, but if you're much over 90lbs, that is too big for my taste.
Agreed. There are out-sized GSDs being bred ... on purpose just for increased size. Another problem lately is far too much angulation of hind quarters, to the point some look unbalanced. It's as if some breeders think "if a little is good, then more will always be better" ... and so they go overboard. It's pretty sad ... I don't thinkk it's helping the breed overalll.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Domestika View Post
Yes, she does have some type of digestive problem. She recently tested positive for campylobacter so we're treating her for that. But it's unlikely that that is the only problem. More likely, she has some other underlying illness that just made it easier for the campylobacter to get out of hand. When we fix this bacterial imbalance we'll still be left with an underlying problem of some kind...is my guess.
The more details you post regarding this, the more I begin thinking it may be something else? Mental stress causes gut bacteria overgrowth in a dog, whether the particular bacteria belong there or not. Saw another one of your threads recently ... regarding Nova jumping on other dog's heads and licking them. You thought perhaps "dominance" but I tend to agree with the replies that it's over-playfulness. Wondering if perhaps Nova does not have some mysterious underlying illness but just feels stressed for some reason?

The rashes, ear infections and allergies also suggest stress, to me at least. Sounds like perhaps yeast overgrowth, also affected (at least in part) by stress. (Some amount of yeast on skin is normal .. overgrowth suggests some form of stress, whether physical or mental.)

Allergies are from an over-active immune system ... also negatively affected by stress. I realize you have had bite-inhibition problems with her, but I'm begininng to believe that Nova is not "dominant" and "hard-headed" ... but perhaps actually has a "softer" personality. (That wouldn't be a bad thing ... "softer" personality GSDs grow to be very reliable adults, steadfast but still gentle!) Bite-inhibition problems can also come from over-playfulness combined with nervousness from stress. Maybe work on extra bonding? (i.e, minimizing stress ...soft voice, no yelling. Sit quietly with her while she chews a bone and you hold the other end of the bone, hand-feeding, etc.? )
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Old 10-08-2008, 11:39 AM
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I breed German Shepherds from Germany. The size has alot to do with the parents also. How much you feed and grow out your puppy. I never tested any of mine this way, I just watch them grow at a safe rate and if too fast I cut back on feed and more exercise they are given.

You do not want a fast growth on this breed. Females should weigh from 65 lbs to not over 70 lbs. Males from 71lbs to 90lb. I never breed to 100 lb males or females for that matter. I follow the SV rules from Germany as they know this wonderful breed more than any other.
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Old 10-08-2008, 11:58 AM
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That should read from 55 to 70 lbs
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