My new dog - Bramble

Hello, we got a dog from a shelter 3 weeks ago, her name is Bramble, kept her name, not that she knows it ;D she is a PBGV cross with possibly working cocker spaniel not sure, she is 18 months old and 9kg over weight, she has lost 1kg in the 3 weeks with us and is currently 25.1kg. She lived in a caravan with her previous owner not sure if she was walked as she went round in circles on the lead at first. She was a bit timid at first but she settled in 3 days and appears happy, no crying at night totally clean in the house sweet and loving, she is shy with other dogs and hides behind me when on walks then looks at the other dog with interest as it walks away. She has no recall and a typical scent hound attention span when distracted by smells. I have taught her to sit and to wait at the curb. My main concern is getting her weight off, she is not spayed as she is too fat for the anaesthetic. She was fed on Baker’s at her old home and the shelter had her on Royal Canin satiety vet diet kibble and meat, but I switched her to Essential Contour kibble and Butternut Box meat (chicken, turkey and fish flavours only) mixed. I feed her at 6am and 6 pm. She loves the outdoors and we have taken to beaches and forests at the weekend, she loves her normal walks as well, she has started to run a tiny bit but gets out of breath and sits down. Her history is a bit vague so I’m not sure how she got so overweight at a young age.
Any advice on weightloss would be great .

Hello and welcome to the forum. Well done for giving a Bramble a new home. It sounds as if you have made a good start.

There are many health problems that can arise due to obesity so it is good that you are trying to address this. We have quite a few threads on the forum about this and having just searched using the term ‘weight loss’ I have found the following but there are more:

Obesity and weight loss thread
Weight loss
Need a weight loss food and fast

You can search for additional material using the search box, top right.

Essential Contour is a good quality food and has a nutritional rating of 91% - link. Protein is above average, fat is average and carbohydrate is above average. Butternut Box is also a good quality fresh food and can be fed as the whole diet or part in conjunction with other products. Both are complete foods.

My personal feeling is that with a dog who needs to lose weight it is best to keep it simple and just feed one type of complete food. If it is weighed properly and the dog is not given anything else it will quickly become apparent if the quantity is correct and you can adjust by 10% as required. Dry food can be enhanced by using suitable (non starchy) cooked, mashed vegetables and it will help to sate the dog’s appetite. More information here.

3kg is a lot to lose so take your time and aim for a steady weight loss. It is absolutely essential to weigh the food accurately so that you can reduce it gradually (by 10%) if weight loss does not occur. Also, only give the dog it’s rations and no extras. If you wish to give treats, reduce the food a little. Don’t over exercise your dog in an attempt to encourage weight loss. It can be too much of a strain on the dog. Just aim for gentle, frequent walks at the moment. Diet will reduce weight better than trying to get it off by over exercising them, particularly strenuous exercise.

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I make sure everything is weighed, I never guess. My previous dogs were mini dachshunds and were free fed kibble and had fresh twice a day they would not eat it mixed, they were very picky and a bit neurotic about food so were never overweight. Bramble won’t eat the kibble by itself according to the shelter I have not tried it with her myself with the new kibble.

I looked on the body condition chart and she looks in between the overweight and obese body shapes. She has lost 1 kg so far and this seems to have come off her neck area. She had put on some muscle as well and her legs look better. She needs to get to 19kg to have her spay surgery according to the vet.

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