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I rescued Nola about 6 weeks ago, her father is a black German Shepherd (80 lbs +) and her mother is a German Shepherd X Labrador Retriever ( about 70 lbs) . She was 10 weeks old, riddled with parasites, extremely underweight (weighed about 10 lbs). I put her on Taste of The Wild, treated her for the parasites, got her vaccinated ( she goes for her spay surgery this Friday). She currently weighs 15 lbs. She eats 3-4 cups of puppy food daily. I have given her rice, tried boiled chicken, ect. Her rib bones and spine are not visible but her hip bones are. She is as tall as my fiances 40 lb Pit Bull mix. They are both high energy and Nola moves constantly when she isnt sleeping. Im trying to get an idea of what she should weigh at her current size. What more can I do to get her to a healthy weight? Im putting her on vitamins, and tried feeding raw ( i fed my last dog raw) but she doesnt care for veggies and only wants the meat. She eats the kibble with no issue, loves rice and eggs.

What else can I give her to help her gain weight? I will worry about getting it stable once her hip bones arent showing.
 

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Can we see a picture of her? Just to get an idea of what we're working with?
Normally - the advice I've seen anyway - the suggestion for a healthy weight is being able to see and feel the ribs, easily, under a thin layer of fat - but if you can't see them, but can see her hips.... I'm just a little confused and need a photo here... LOL

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It honestly sounds like you're doing fine as far as feeding goes with the pup, 4 cups a day was about what we gave our guy as a munchkin.
 

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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
Nola2.jpg

That was taken about 2 weeks ago. Her ribs and spine are not visible (on most days anyway, there are times when i can count them) but i can feel them. her hip bones poke out. I will get better pictures of her when i bathe her later today.

When i take her out 90% of the time someone tells me about how thin she is. She was pretty much feral when I got her, and I have no idea what the guy was feeding her, her sister, or the 9 other dogs he had running around his property. I told him he needs to get his dogs fixed. She hadnt seen a vet before I got her, the guy told me "I'd have to charge $100 per puppy if they were vetted!
 

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I would consider asking your vet about things like unflavor'd pedialyte (can only have so much in a day) (adult human should only have 1 liter a day so there should be a limit to the size of your pup) and something like nutri-cal both to support organ functions and add high calories that are easily digested... it's not healthy to pack on weight too fast, and a pup can only eat so much in a day...
 

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Discussion Starter #5
My vet told me to up her food intake, and to give her rice with her meals. She is on a schedule and eats twice a day but would eat all day long if I let her.
 

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Large-breed puppies should be kept lean anyway---carrying too much weight can be hard on growing joints. As long as she's strong and active, and doesn't have every bone jutting out, I'd be satisfied. You can tell people she's going through an awkward stage if they express concern :).
 

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If her ribs and spine aren't visible, then it doesn't sound like she is underweight. Some hip bones showing is normal, especially as puppies go through growth spurts. Especially for a larger breed dog, being lean is very important.

What does the vet say? Does he agree that she needs to gain weight?

It could also be that you just aren't feeding enough kibble. Generally, a guide is to feed a puppy the amount they will eat as an adult. So my 45lb dog (as an adult) got 3 cups of food as a puppy. He's eating basically the same amount now. So for a dog who will be 70-80lbs, 4 cups might be more reasonable than 3.
 

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My vet told me to up her food intake, and to give her rice with her meals. She is on a schedule and eats twice a day but would eat all day long if I let her.
then I would follow what your vet has already told you... my experience is more food in, the body only utilizes so much at a time and the rest comes out in poop... ?? rice is filler to take up space, feel fuller faster, there is not weight gain advantage to it or nutrition to it..??? consider a raw diet if your not seeing the results you want to and the pup isn't satisfied from the meals he is getting..
 
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