Need to put weight on my French Bulldog

one of our French Bulldogs is 14 months old and is a pet first and foremost but has been doing well in the show ring qualified for Crufts 2015 and since have a new addition to our pack a Frenchie puppy Molly is very active some people have been very unhelpful telling us to just reduce her exercise but we don’t want to do that as she is free to run and play in our large garden, can anyone suggest a food and or supplements which will help her to put her weight back on. She is a very happy healthy girl any suggestions appreciated :slight_smile:

Hello Puissance - welcome to the forum and well done in qualifying your dog for Crufts. The fact that she has qualified would seem to indicate that the judges feel that her weight is OK. Are you absolutely certain that she is underweight and if so, what is it that makes you think this?

What is the breed standard weight for bitches and what is the weight of your dog? At this age I assume you are showing her in the junior classes? I don’t have any personal knowledge of this breed but they seem to be a stocky kind of dog and I assume that for the show ring they need to have ‘body’ so to speak. With this in mine, are you perhaps comparing her to the bitches in the higher classes? I don’t know how long it takes French Bulldogs to mature but maybe she has a way to go yet; she is still quite young. I think you are right to let her have fun and to run around - that is how a youngster should be - full of joie de vivre.

Also, please could you tell us the food that she is currently on, frequency of meals, amount and any extras that she gets in the form of treats?

Hi Dottie

Molly is fed on cobination of RAW and complete she has Natures Way adult. Treats she has Tripe Sticks, she was a good weight and has lost weight, visibly people are commenting on her weight loss. Her food is down all the time as she shares with 3 others she is boss so no worries about her getting the food she wants

I am not familiar with Nature’s Way dog food so have just had a look and the recipe seems OK. The score on here is 4.2. Is there any reason why you are feeding both NW and raw? We had a discussion on this recently and while we concluded that there was no reason not to mix the different types of food, most people seem to routinely feed one or the other. I am thinking that with feeding two different products it might be a bit tricky getting the quantities (recommended daily allowance) right. If you fed one type of food you would be able to get a clearer picture of exactly how much your dog needs and adjust it up and down as needed.

With raw feeding, the amount is usually given at 2% to 3% of body weight. I don’t feed raw myself but I understand (anecdotally) that some dogs can lose weight on it so you need to fine tune the amount. It might be worth either sticking with this totally or going over to Nature’s Way and monitor the situation. I see that NW has guidelines on feeding and you could follow these, adjusting up or down as needed.

The other thing that I noted is that you leave food down. I am not a fan of this practise but I understand that some people feel that it is OK. I think that perhaps dogs value their food more if it is not always available. If you decide to change to set meal times, I would suggest dividing the daily amount into three.

BTW has Molly been wormed within the last three months? If not, it might be worth giving her a dose of Drontal or whatever preparation you prefer. Also, forgot to ask if her poo is alright? You probably already know this, but it should be firm, clean and easy to pick up with no mucous. Sloppy, mucousy and frequent poos can be a sign of intolerance to certain food substances. That can have the effect of weight loss.

It sounds as if she is a healthy pup and maybe this is just a result of the teenage phase that she is going through - it could be that she will fill out in the next few months. However, see how you get on with her diet and it goes without saying that if you are concerned then see your vet for Molly to have a check up.