Hi guys i’m new here, i have a 7 year old Husky who has Hypothyroidism, which generally means she struggles to lose weight. It’s not as bad as more severe cases where dogs get lesions and lose fur but she does put on weight very easily, struggle to shed it and gets lethargic occasionally, regardless of the amount of exercise she receives.

She’s still in the process of going through her blood tests which she has every few months to determine how much medication she should be on, i was wondering what i should be looking for in her food?

At the moment she’s on a 50% salmon and trout with sweet potato kibble which has been great for my german shepherd, and generally fine for the Husky but no results in terms of weight loss really. Although some people have said this won’t really balance out until her levels of medication are sorted?

I don’t have the space to raw feed unfortunately.

There is nothing wrong with two of my dogs except they seem to have a slow metabolic rate and put weight on at the drop of a hat. I admit that I still haven’t found an answer to the problem despite having scoured the Internet. I’ve just had to reduce their food until they have got to the state where their weight is steady.

AFAIK the thinking is that high protein is best so they don’t burn off muscle when dieting. If you check out Light and Fit on the Acana website they explain this. The problem is that high protein sometimes means high fat. I’ve been told on this forum that a higher fat level shouldn’t be a problem and that it is carbs that are the ‘baddies’ so to speak. I therefore tried my two on raw complete and at first I gave a light and low purine version which really got the weight off the younger one. Sadly, when I put them on the normal type they started to gain, particularly the older one who clapped it on despite my being very strict with quantity and even feeding less than the 2% of body weight.

In conclusion, I’ve found that (at the moment), that a lower fat seems to help. Their current food has a little over 10% and seems to work but at the expense of giving them what appears to be a very small amount. Earlier in the year we had a little spell on Wainwright’s Grain Free because that has a moderate 11% fat. That seemed to be OK - they didn’t put weight on and being kibble it looked more in the bowl but again, it was at a much lower amount than recommended. It’s a tough one - sorry I can’t be of much help. :-[

Hello and welcome Greg,

Dottie really has had lots of experience trying to find a food that will fill her girls without expanding their waistlines.

If your girl is maintaining her weight on her present food, it might be best to stick with it until they say her meds are at the right level, and then look for one to help her lose some. At least she isn’t still gaining but it may be hard to juggle diet changes at the same time as getting the meds right.

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We have a Patterdale which seems to hold onto his weight on quite a reduced amount of food. As he lives iin granny extension, I blame the dog biscuit before bed he is given but could be wrong. Personally speaking, cutting out sugar and wheat and watching other fructose high etc food according to the Monashe University FODMAP diet to relieve acid reflux has had the pleasant side effect of quite quick weight loss. I eat cheese and chips etc and don’t monitor my fat intake or calories so low carbohydrates works, at least for me. However, I am not a dog nor would I promise that you would lose weight on my diet.
I am increasingly convinced that we are what we eat and that it is more complicated than dieticians once thought. Knowing exactly what goes in the dish is easier if you prepare it yourself. Dr Pitcairn the respected US vet is now pro carbs in that he is concerned about the accumulation of chemicals in animals at the top of the food chain. He quotes an emminent British doctor who says the average human would be considered too toxic to be eaten! He is a vegetarian because he believes it is less toxic. It just makes you think.

I did have her on Applaws before this new one but that was quite high fat as well as being high protein and to be honest i’ve noticed no difference between the applaws and the food their on now except that their stools are a little better now. One was tending to get clogged anal glands on Applaws.

I’ll have a look at the Acana light and fit, but in the meantime i think it looks like waiting until the medicine is right and MORE exercise. Bless her, the shepherd is in fantastic condition though, it’s strange how much of a difference the Hypothyroidism makes considering they get pretty much the same amount of food (the Husky gets a bit less because of her weight problem) and the same amount of exercise yet the Husky is a good 6-8 kg heavier! She is taller than the GSD too though.

Hi Dottie, which light and Low purine food did you use that helped with the weight issues? Did you try Acana’s light and fit?

The product I used was Nutriment. However, Natures Menu Country Hunter nuggets are also lower in fat. I haven’t tried Acana Light and Fit but someone else on the forum said that they were going to use it. Unfortunately they haven’t got back in touch to let us know how they were getting on with it. The product certainly fits the criteria of high protein/ low fat and has a calorie count of 300 kcals per 100g.

Fish4Dogs do a weight control food that might be worth looking at. I have used different versions of it on my dogs in the past and one is currently on it. It is a very plain sort of food - just fish, potato and pea but is reputed to be easily digested. It can be soaked first and this bulks it up. However, because your dog has hypothyroidism and it would be best to check it out with the vet first. It contains seaweed meal and I am not sure whether that would be a problem or not.

Sorry to pop in

low purine is that not different to low protein?

I dont think its the same Dottie, perhaps David Jackson could swoop in here
But I am sure they are different

I know my daughters dog is a dalmatian and that she feeds low purine foods which is salmon and veg but thats 30% protein shes a nurse so working but I will ask her whats the difference but hopefully David will be along with his views.


found a link it is about a certain breed however it may help with the difference in purine and protein hope it helps you and good luck

oh Greg
I personally suffer thyroid issues its awful, measuring everything keeping active and your brain alert is a life battle, hope your dogs test results come back and you have some answers
if your looking for higher meat but lower fats have you looked at https://www.millieswolfheart.co.uk/Tracker-Mix-low-fat/
I know a few who have been using this at training class for their older dogs who put on weight as they dont train much now.
May be one to look at along with the others people have suggested and F4D I thing do a low fat one too
Good luck with it all and keep us posted.
Lou x

I wasn’t suggesting that purine is the same as protein. The only reason I mentioned this Nutriment version is because it was recommended (along with Light) by the company when I initially enquired about weight loss in dogs. There is an explanation of purine here.

Hi Dottie, which light and Low purine food did you use that helped with the weight issues? Did you try Acana's light and fit?
I was referring to gregs post which you then responded to about low protein which could have been confusing to the reader I am sure you understand regards Lou