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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I have just a general question about feeding and poundage.

We have been feeding Jager 4.5 cups a day for the past month to 1.5 months, because on the bag of our food (Nutri-Source, very similar to TOTW), it says that for his age, he should be getting 3.5-4.5 cups of food per day.

However, I noticed that he seems to look kinda just... slightly skinny? Like don't get me wrong, he is a lean, muscular, strong, good lookin' boy, BUT i noticed the last time we were out playing and running, that I could see almost all his ribs while he was in full stride. And I've read on here that you're only supposed to see the back 2 ribs.

He is 7 months old, perfectly healthy, and has had no vet concerns in at least 2 months. His last checkup was only 2 weeks ago, and everything checked out just fine.

Anyways, am I just worrying to much? Or should I go against what the bag of food says, and give him like 5-5.5 cups a day to see if he'll fill out more? I'm just worried about OVER-feeding, cuz I know that's a problem too.

Advice please??? :confused:
EDIT: The other thing I forgot to mention is that he is VERY active. We are committed to playing and walking with him as much as possible. So maybe that could play into his "slight skinnyness"? It is not uncommon for him to run 1.5-2miles at least 4-5 days a week with me, and that's completely separate exercise from play-time.
 

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First, if you are taking him on a leash running with you, stop! Growth plates don't close until 18 months or so, and forced, repetitive exercise can cause big problems. If he is off leash and can stop/start when he wants, then that is just fine.

The feeding directions on the dog food bag are just guidelines. All dogs are different, if your boy seems a bit thin, then increase his food by 1/2 cup a day and see how he looks in a week or so. If still thin then increase the food a bit more, and of course if he starts to get pudgy, cut the food back.

We need pictures!
 

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Discussion Starter #3
First, if you are taking him on a leash running with you, stop! Growth plates don't close until 18 months or so, and forced, repetitive exercise can cause big problems.

We need pictures!
Ok i'm confused. First off, this is not "forced" running. He does really well running next to me. I do have to guide him with the leash, and correct him to heal from time to time, but nothing major. He WANTS and LOVES to run. And we make sure and stay in the grass 90% of the time so he is not running on pavement (i don't want his pads to get hurt).

He could not be trusted off the leash. He is still learning how to perfectly stay at heal, and if he was off leash, he would chase after squirrels, or cats, or whatever else we come across during the run.

And technically speaking, (I should've clarified) The TOTAL walk is usually 1.5-2 miles. We usually only run maybe about 1mile out of that total, the rest is just walking.
 

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Hey there,

With my pup I started watching her eating habit and noticed how much she ate versus how much she left in the bowl. I feed Innova and I was going by what they said, but I found myself wasting food and money. I started letting my puppies eating habits dictate how much I fed her within reason. I never went above the amount the bag said, but I did go under. I agree with the earlier post that it is a guideline because each dog is different.

Another thing I did was get back with my breeder and ask how her parents filled out to see if they were late bloomers or anything. This gave me a general idea of what I MIGHT see in her. Just some background info really so when you see your pup looking a little thin, if the mother or father looked thin at the same age then it might be that your pup is following in their foot steps...

Not sure if that helps, but it's what I did.
 

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Ok i'm confused. First off, this is not "forced" running. He does really well running next to me. I do have to guide him with the leash, and correct him to heal from time to time, but nothing major. He WANTS and LOVES to run. And we make sure and stay in the grass 90% of the time so he is not running on pavement (i don't want his pads to get hurt).

He could not be trusted off the leash. He is still learning how to perfectly stay at heal, and if he was off leash, he would chase after squirrels, or cats, or whatever else we come across during the run.

And technically speaking, (I should've clarified) The TOTAL walk is usually 1.5-2 miles. We usually only run maybe about 1mile out of that total, the rest is just walking.
Technically that IS forced running because he is running to stay with you and not because he wants to run for heck of it.

Also, the thing about seeing the last 2 ribs is when the dog is standing alert and not moving at all - you should be able to discern the last 2 ribs. When a dog is moving, you can see everything. It is better to be thin that fat, but you need to be sure that the bones are covered by a nice layer of skin that is at least 1/4" thick - you will find that the skin around the neck area would be about 1/2" thick if the rib area is 1/4" thick. The hipbones should be covered but easily felt.

Hope that helps. even on my very overweight male (who has health issues and is fat as a result), I can see most of his ribs when he is moving and he is about 10lb too heavy.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Hey there,

Another thing I did was get back with my breeder and ask how her parents filled out to see if they were late bloomers or anything. This gave me a general idea of what I MIGHT see in her. Just some background info really so when you see your pup looking a little thin, if the mother or father looked thin at the same age then it might be that your pup is following in their foot steps...

Not sure if that helps, but it's what I did.
Aah yes, that is good advice. I will definitely give my breeder a call, and ask about the Father's physicality at Jager's age. Thanks!
 

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Ok i'm confused. First off, this is not "forced" running. He does really well running next to me. I do have to guide him with the leash, and correct him to heal from time to time, but nothing major. He WANTS and LOVES to run. And we make sure and stay in the grass 90% of the time so he is not running on pavement (i don't want his pads to get hurt).

He could not be trusted off the leash. He is still learning how to perfectly stay at heal, and if he was off leash, he would chase after squirrels, or cats, or whatever else we come across during the run.

And technically speaking, (I should've clarified) The TOTAL walk is usually 1.5-2 miles. We usually only run maybe about 1mile out of that total, the rest is just walking.
Don't take it to offense, you shouldn't be doing any jogging with your dog like that until he is 18 months and he finished developing, before that, you are putting his joints, muscles and ligaments at risk since they're too tender and jogging could cause damage AND future injuries.

If you can't trus him off leash in an open space, you can either get a very long lane so he can run around "free-ish" but you can still get ahold of him as soon as you need to, OR go to a big field, dog park or somewhere fenced, this will also help you practice his recall.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Technically that IS forced running because he is running to stay with you and not because he wants to run for heck of it.

Also, the thing about seeing the last 2 ribs is when the dog is standing alert and not moving at all - you should be able to discern the last 2 ribs. When a dog is moving, you can see everything. It is better to be thin that fat, but you need to be sure that the bones are covered by a nice layer of skin that is at least 1/4" thick - you will find that the skin around the neck area would be about 1/2" thick if the rib area is 1/4" thick. The hipbones should be covered but easily felt.

Hope that helps. even on my very overweight male (who has health issues and is fat as a result), I can see most of his ribs when he is moving and he is about 10lb too heavy.
Yes, that does help, I appreciate it. I can only see "all" ribs when he is in full gallop, and he does have a nice layer of skin over the main ribs. So I probably am over-reacting a bit. And yes the hipbones are covered.

Back to this running thing though, again, I am not "forcing" him to run. As soon as I pick up the pace, even a TINY bit, he is on it and ready to run right next to me (sometimes he is a little in front, but that's natural because he is obviously faster than me, but he is good at realizing that, and pulling back to run next to me).

I am not "forcing" him to do anything. He is staying next to me of course, because that is good training, and he needs to understand how to heal properly. I am under the impression that properly healing (just like all other training) needs to be drilled into them alot while they're young/puppies, otherwise there will be behavioral issues later.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Don't take it to offense, you shouldn't be doing any jogging with your dog like that until he is 18 months and he finished developing, before that, you are putting his joints, muscles and ligaments at risk since they're too tender and jogging could cause damage AND future injuries.

If you can't trus him off leash in an open space, you can either get a very long lane so he can run around "free-ish" but you can still get ahold of him as soon as you need to, OR go to a big field, dog park or somewhere fenced, this will also help you practice his recall.
Ok seriously, what is the difference between going out for a jog, and him running around in an old abandoned baseball field we play at all the time? Either way he is running.
Under the logic that you JUST described, running around in the baseball field with no leash would be "putting his joints, muscles and ligaments at risk", and under that logic, he would not be able to exercise at all.

I'm sorry, but that makes no sense at all. Elaborate on your logic if you please.

The other thing is, i don't WANT him on a long leash where he can "run around free-ish" because then he won't properly learn how to heal, and will try to pull ahead of me as the "head of the pack", and I do not want to allow that to happen.
 

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Oh, and DobbieLovie, sorry, I am not taking offence I promise. Sorry if it came off that way. Please elaborate.
 

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Oh, and DobbieLovie, sorry, I am not taking offence I promise. Sorry if it came off that way. Please elaborate.
Ok, I'm happy you are not taking offence, cause I dont meant to offend at all.

I found this on the net

A. You need to wait a while before putting the miles on that pup, or risk permanent damage to her developing body. Assuming she's in good overall health (your vet can help determine that), eight months of age is about the earliest you should start letting her run with you, and even then, you should figure on only a mile or two, at a relatively slow pace, at first. Keep in mind that the bones and joints of large or giant breed puppies mature more slowly than those of smaller dogs, so eight months is probably too early for them. Ask your veterinarian abut the best time to get started if you have a large or giant breed puppy.

Even if running has to wait a bit, that doesn't mean you shouldn't be doing anything with your puppy now. Use the next few months to make sure your pet is well socialized. Introduce her to any situation that's likely to pop up when you're running; make sure she's comfortable around people of all ages, bicycles, strollers, cars and noisy motorcycles. Free exercise on soft surfaces — such as play with another dog on grass — is also great for youngsters. Get your pup into a training class now so she'll learn how to walk — and later run — on lead without dislocating your shoulder or pulling you off-stride.

Before starting any exercise program, talk to your veterinarian to get a more accurate assessment of your pet's development and suitability as a running companion. When you get the go-ahead to start training together, take your time building up your pet's mileage and speed. And keep your dog lean — even a little extra weight is harder on the joints. (And speaking of joints, make a note to talk to your veterinarian when your dog is mature about joint-care supplements. They really help!)


Like it says here the larger the breed the more you have to wait.

Is this what you asked me to elaborate on or about letting them run off leash or with a long lane?
 

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It is the constant, repetitive motion that causes the injury to developing plates. You just keep banging away on the same area.
When a dog is allowed to play freely they turn, move, change gaits, and are able to stop.
You can easily cause early arthritic changes in your dog if you continue to jog her before her growth plates are closed.
 

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Your puppy wants to please you and be with you. He'll run beside you until he can run no more. Take note of the advice given to you from these people, or you may end up with damage that cannot be fixed.

One of the reasons I purchased Murphy was to get a running buddy, I was very upset to hear how long it would take for that to happen, but recognize that it's what's best for him.
 

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Yes, that is helpful. So answer me this, why is it "OK" for him to freely run and sprint around, and go crazy in a field? Is that hard on his joints, and could that damage his development? Or is it not damaging because it's random and not "repetitive"? Can you explain that plz?

I do understand what you're saying, and from now on, I will only walk with him, no more running. Until he is the proper age.
 

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It is the constant, repetitive motion that causes the injury to developing plates. You just keep banging away on the same area.
When a dog is allowed to play freely they turn, move, change gaits, and are able to stop.
You can easily cause early arthritic changes in your dog if you continue to jog her before her growth plates are closed.
Aah, I see you already answered my most recent post. Thanks. I understand now. Thank you.
 
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Your puppy wants to please you and be with you. He'll run beside you until he can run no more. Take note of the advice given to you from these people, or you may end up with damage that cannot be fixed.

One of the reasons I purchased Murphy was to get a running buddy, I was very upset to hear how long it would take for that to happen, but recognize that it's what's best for him.
Understood. Thank you. Yeah, that is slightly upsetting, but I can wait for my boy to grow up more before being my jogging buddy. :)
 

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Trust me I was sooo dissapointed when I found this out, because I wanted Luna to be my jogging partner right away...but don't worry everything good is worth waiting :D
 

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Trust me I was sooo dissapointed when I found this out, because I wanted Luna to be my jogging partner right away...but don't worry everything good is worth waiting :D
Very true, thanks. The good news is that Jager and I have not ran ALOT together. And never more than about half a mile at a time. The majority is always walking. But now it will ALL be walking.

Unless of course he is roaming free in the baseball field. LoL
 
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Lets see some photos of Jager!
The amount on the bag is just a guideline. Each dog is different on how it will metabolize the food and the dogs energy level. Also how many calories each cup of food has in it. You can increase his food.
Is the food Nutri Source Large Breed Puppy? There are some better foods out there. This one has corn gluten meal, the fish meal is un-named as to what kind of fish it is from. Also don't know where Nutri Source sources the fish meal from and if they (the source) use Ethoxyquin... Dangerous Dog Food Preservative in the fish meal. This will not be listed on the bag.
The only way to find this out is to call the company and ask. If they use a
source that they guarantee they do not use Ethoxyquin as a preservative in the fish meal?

Look for foods that do not have any Corn, Corn Gluten, Wheat, Wheat, Wheat Gluten, or Soy. Also use these guidlines when you feed treats. One other ingredient you do not want to see in the food is Menadione Sodium Bisulfite Complex (Source of Vitamin K Activity) Thei will be further down the list almost at the end.
The other Nutri Source food Pure Vita Grain Free looks like little better food. The the Nutri source Natural Planet Organics is better yet.
You can use a Large Breed Puppy or an All Life Stages food. We waited until 1 yr with the puppy food then switched to Adult food.
Good luck with your Dobe.

I also would not run him a lot he is still young.

Some very good sites to learn and check out ratings on food.
Dog Food Reviews and Ratings | Dog Food Advisor
Dog Food Analysis - Reviews of kibble
DogAware.com: Diet & Health Info for Man's Best Friend
petsumer.com
 
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