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Hi, Im new here.. I have recently (3 weeks ago) taking my ex husbands pit bull. Her name is Allie and she is the sweetest dog shes almost 4 years now. My ex has taken a job that requires him to be away for long periods of time, when he had her she spent 8-10 hours a day in a 5x5 pen. She had an automatic feeder and was over weight, now that I have had her in a 1/2 acre fenced yard she has lost weight dramatically (from 60 lbs to about 40). She needs heart worm treatment, but the vet said to wait a few weeks for her gain healthy weight, vet also said to just feed her more food more often. She is eating me out of house and home lol she is eating her food too! fast, and still isnt gaining. I am feeding her dog chow because the ex sent it with her. Also, Ive given her boiled chicken (fat on) and rice over her food, about once a week. What can I do to put weight on her, shes eating around 9 cups of food in 3 batches. She needs healthy weight for her treatment, but I cant seem to put it on her, help??
 

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A better quality food will help a huge amount. Dog Chow contains lots of filler that a dog's digestive system can't really process. Basically, what you are feeding her is going right through her.
Try a grain free food with a moderate level of fat. Rice is not going to do anything towards putting weight on, boiled chicken is fine but I would take the fat off it.
Look for foods like Taste of the Wild, Earthborn (grain free choices), Arcana, Orijien etc. She will need less food in terms of volume with these foods so don't let the price tag scare you off. I feed Earthborn Primitive Natural and my healthy weight 78 lbs dog eats 2.5 cups per day and my last foster, a lab/pit that needed to gain weight ate 4 cups per day plus some meat for treats.
Change her food slowly over a week or so if you think she has a sensitive stomach. I have switched several fosters over to grain-free cold turkey with no problems but some dogs can't handle quick food changes. I happen to feel that something like Dog Chow has so many very poor and unhealthy ingredients that I will risk a couple days of upset stomach to get them on better food. A little canned pumpkin will often sort out digestive trouble anyway.
Has she been checked for intestinal worms? Definitely get that checked if not.

Here's an example of what a good diet can do very fast:
 

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t something like Dog Chow has so many very poor and unhealthy ingredients that I will risk a couple days of upset stomach to get them on better food.

I agree. I would get her off the Dog Chow asap.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks for the advise, I have enough dog chow to feed her in the morning then im out so i will be checking the ingredients list on new food tomorrow. She did have worms and was treated the first week I got her.
Also, does anyone know of a good shampoo, she has sensitive skin, I am currently using one with oatmeal and she is on flea meds but is still very itchy.


Thanks again!
 

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How often are you bathing her? Bathing more than about once every week or two weeks will dry out the skin. If she gets dirty, just dry her off and brush the dirt off. If she rolls in something yucky, wash just that part of her.

Try adding a small amount (half a teaspoon about) of olive oil to her meals once per day or squeeze one fish oil caplet out on her food (like the kind you can buy in the health food section for people). Both are healthy fats that are good for skin and hair.

When you look at ingredients, grain-free is best (most use potatos or peas as the starch) but there also foods with grains that are decent, like 4Health brand at Tractor Supply. Look for a named meat or meat meal (meat meal just means the water has been removed- it is not the same thing as "meat by-product") for the first 2, preferably 3 ingredients. If she's having itchy skin, it might be good to try a food not based on chicken. Consider one based on fish, lamb or bison (most of the major quality brands have those choices)
 

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Thanks for the advise, I have enough dog chow to feed her in the morning then im out so i will be checking the ingredients list on new food tomorrow. She did have worms and was treated the first week I got her.
Also, does anyone know of a good shampoo, she has sensitive skin, I am currently using one with oatmeal and she is on flea meds but is still very itchy.


Thanks again!
This could clear up once she is on a good food.
 

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Any time you have an itchy dog, the first thing to do is switch foods. Food allergies are very common in dogs, so I would switch her to a grain free food with an unusual protein like venison, buffalo or duck. Dogs are frequently allergic to chicken, wheat and corn. Give her a couple of weeks on the new food and see how her skin is. (Remember, treats count here. There's no use putting her on a chicken free kibble if you feed her chicken as treats.)

Read the labels carefully. Blue's Wilderness duck variety contains chicken. It's a great food, but if you're looking to avoid chicken, that's not the food for you.
 
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