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Large Sheltie

Discussion in 'General Health' started by Kelsey, Dec 13, 2018.

  1. Kelsey

    Kelsey Forums Regular

    Oct 28, 2010
    My sheltie, Henry, is rather large and always has been. When he came to us at 5 months old, he was already 25 pounds and got up to 50 fully grown (he's 4 now). He's also very tall. I asked the vet about his weight and he said he was fine but shouldn't get any bigger. At that point we were giving him 1 cup of food per feeding, so I scaled it back to 3/4 per feeding. He got to 45 pounds which seemed healthier. Now he just seems hungry, as he's been greedy and scavenging around the kitchen. Does anyone else have a large sheltie, and how much do you feed them? If coat is any measure of thyroid health, he has a full, beautiful one. Thoughts? Am I underfeeding him? How do I feed him and keep him from getting too heavy? He doesn't look obese-- not even close. Just a big sheltie. I've never seen one so big!

    PS- He gets fruits or veggies for treats, in his bowl, after he's finished his food. Anything else, and he becomes such a beggar!
  2. Cindy

    Cindy Premium Member

    May 19, 2008
    San Francisco Bay Area, CA
    If you measure him at his shoulders, we can get a better idea of if his weight is an issue.

    Also, can you feel his ribs when you run your hands over his chest?
  3. ghggp

    ghggp Moderator

    Aug 28, 2011
    Grosse Pointe, Michigan
  4. ghggp

    ghggp Moderator

    Aug 28, 2011
    Grosse Pointe, Michigan
    These are the 10 best vegetables for dogs to add to your pet's diet:

    1. Asparagus
      Add one to two ounces of lightly steamed asparagus tips (cut into small pieces to prevent choking) to add variety, flavor, vitamins, and minerals to a dog's meal. Sometimes a new flavor or texture is all it takes to renew interest in his usual food.
    2. Broccoli
      Broccoli stalks boost immunity, help ward off cancer and fight arthritic inflammation. Also, chewing on stalks creates a natural, plaque-fighting toothbrush! Beware: too much broccoli, especially the heads, can upset the digestive system and cause major gas. Broccoli should make up less than 5 percent of your dog's food intake.
    3. Carrots
      Chewing raw, crunchy carrots eases anxiety and cleans teeth! Eating carrots is great for eyesight and boosts the immune system with antioxidants. Some dogs find raw carrots hard to chew and can choke. If you see undigested carrot pieces in stool, chop into smaller pieces and serve cooked, which can also help avoid choking. The Nest recommends giving a dog one carrot, pureed, only every two days or so.
    4. Green Beans
      If your puppy is carrying extra weight, replace up to 5 percent of her food with low-calorie green beans. They're high in fiber to help aid digestion and bowel regulation, and have heart-healthy omega-3s.
    5. Kale
      Kale isn't just a superfood for people! It boasts tons of benefits like fighting heart disease, arthritis, allergies and urinary tract problems. While too much can cause gas and bloating, adding one ounce of steamed, chopped or dried kale to your dog's meal can boost its health value.
    6. Mushrooms
      Button mushrooms can stimulate the immune system and help with allergies. While some mushrooms are great, others are toxic. Talk with your vet before adding mushrooms to your dog's diet to determine what kind and how much you can feed your dog.
    7. Parsley
      Dog breath begone! Parsley is an ideal breath-freshener. It also adds potassium for muscle and joint health and beta carotene for eyes. Add just a sprinkle of chopped parsley to your dog's meal.
    8. Pumpkin
      The high fiber content in pumpkin helps regulate bowels whether your dog is suffering from constipation or diarrhea. Most dogs love the taste of canned, pureed pumpkin! Replace a quarter of your dog's meal with the same amount of canned pumpkin until his system has regulated itself.
    9. Sweet potato
      Cooked mashed or pureed, sweet potato is a healthy and tasty treat that fills a dog's tummy and boosts his system with vitamins, minerals and fiber. A dog could choke on a whole potato, but you can cut it into wedges to prevent that. Replace up to a quarter of your dog's regular food with mashed sweet potatoes to change up her routine while boosting her health at the same time!
    10. Zucchini
      A few ounces of raw or frozen zucchini shredded over a meal adds water and fiber to a dog's diet and fills up his tummy too, keeping him lean.
    Roberta likes this.
  5. ghggp

    ghggp Moderator

    Aug 28, 2011
    Grosse Pointe, Michigan
    1BE378E1-788D-4876-AEF9-9F428366E246.jpeg My big tri Sheltie is 40lbs and he is big boned and tall! I give him three cups of food a day and he does not seem far at all! His coat makes him look huge!

    If you can feel the ribs of your dog I would think they are not being fed enough!
    Last edited: Dec 13, 2018
    KarenCurtis and Sandy in CT like this.
  6. Sharon7

    Sharon7 Moderator

    Oct 31, 2009
    Southern California
    Actually, you SHOULD be able to feel ribs. They should have a light padding only. Overweight is bad on so many levels. My vet is really happy my dogs are all lean, but they came to me overweight. Brooke was 28 pounds and she is now 22, at 16 inches. Ask your vet how he is on the scale - I think they use a 1 - 5 scale to score the dog's weight. I think a lot of vets hesitate to tell clients honestly that their dog is overweight because people take it kinda badly.

    Of course some dogs are not only taller, but bigger boned, so they do weigh more. One other tip, do you feed twice daily? Some folks only feed once a day, but dividing it up would probably keep them feeling satisfied all day.
  7. Caro

    Caro Moderator

    Jan 14, 2009
    Canberra, Australia
    I agree with Sharon, you should be able to feel the ribs, and also the bones around the chest.

    There is a lot of variation in Shelties, not just in height but also in length, so an average is hard to determine. But have a look at this chart with heights and weights of some of the Shelties we've had on the board https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet...DNrvWtvu-PUyUSt2Aa0/edit?hl=en&hl=en&au#gid=0 To get height you measure from ground to shoulder blade.

    My Mr D, a very, very long Sheltie, was over 16 inches and hovered around 23.5-25.5lb for most of his life. A 45lb Sheltie would have to be Aussie Shepherd sized - which is entirely possible, Shelties can be way over sized.

    Remember Shelties were bred by poor farmers who valued a dog who could scavenge for it's food. So we ended up with a breed that is a) extremely fuel efficient, and b) darn good at scavenging.

    A few other suggestions. Dogs like routine - they like set meal times. You can add in extra meals as you don't have to feed just once or twice a day, but they should be set times. My dogs get half an egg before bed (to hide tablets) and love it. Giving ad hoc treats during the day will encourage looking for food outside meal times. Dogs actually love working for their food so think of using a treat dispenser or hiding the food (my dogs love this one) or scattering in yard. Sometimes scavenging is just boredom. You can make an easy dispenser by cutting holes in a water bottle they push around to get the kibble out.
    Last edited: Dec 13, 2018
    RikyR likes this.
  8. Cindy

    Cindy Premium Member

    May 19, 2008
    San Francisco Bay Area, CA
    My Gavin is 18" and 30-35lbs.
    He gets 1 cup of food twice a day. Its been that way for years, and he's 13 and less active now.
  9. Piper's mom

    Piper's mom Moderator

    Jun 26, 2015
    Winnipeg Mb
    I agree...you want to be able to feel their ribs with very slight pressure (and their back bone).
    Perhaps 3/4 cup (even Riley who is 38 pounds gets 1 cup plus treats/day) isn't enough. Besides, the vets aren't perfect and they don't know your dog like you do.
  10. Chris

    Chris Premium Member

    Feb 25, 2008
    Northern Virginia
    How much to feed all depends to what you're feeding. Colonel Underpants gets 3/4 cup of Stella and CHewy's kibble twice daily. Yes, I like to feel ribs, but I really don't want mine whip-thin. He's my farm boy, and he needs to be strong.
    KarenCurtis and ghggp like this.

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