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post #1 of 10 (permalink) Old 05-19-2017, 11:47 AM Thread Starter
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Weight Concern

I haven't posted here in a long time but I need advice, please.


My five-year-old male Finlay was neutered September 2016 due to an enlarged prostate. His adult weight has always between 75 and 77lbs. My concern was that his weight may increase once he was neutered and the vet told me that there is a good possibility this may happen. Since September Finlay's weight has increased to 91 lbs. I have decreased his food, cut out snacks, other than bell peppers and green beans. Changed him to weight management formula. Continued with his exercise regimen.....nothing worked.


The other day I took him to the vet for a checkup and blood work to make sure there were no other issues. Everything came back fine. Vet wants him on 1000kcals/day and recommended Prescription Science Diet Metabolic formula, explained success his other patients have had with it. Finlay has been on Proplan since puppyhood. I tried the Proplan Weight Management as well but I guess the calorie count was still too high and he appeared hungry all the time.


My question: what are your thoughts on Science Diet? I was talking to my son who works at a pet store and he told me that Science Diet is not the best food. I could feed Finlay. He recommended another food with approximately the same calorie count and nutritional value, but better incgredients. Now I'm not sure what to do. Do you all have any recommendations? I know he can get 1000 calories with other foods too, but I need to be sure he gets the nutrition and satiety.


Sorry this is long. Thanks, Finlay's Mom

Last edited by Hawks; 05-19-2017 at 12:04 PM.
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post #2 of 10 (permalink) Old 05-19-2017, 12:37 PM
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Have you considered testosterone injections? My Rufus was neutered way too early by the previous owner at the age of 5 months. I adopted him at the age of 2 and he was around 95 pounds. In the first year I tried to reduce his weight by giving him only about 1/3 of what my other not neutered golden ate. Rufus didn't lose a single gram and was always hungry. For the last year Rufus is on a testosterone injections every 2 weeks and all looks good. I haven't weighted him recently, but there is a visible difference in his appearance, regulars in the dog park notice the positive change.
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post #3 of 10 (permalink) Old 05-19-2017, 12:57 PM
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I wouldn't switch to crappy food.

I would feed regular food or at least food that has lower fat, but not single digits low... but cut back on quantity.

You can cut back to 2 cups of food a day. If needed, you could even cut back to 1.5 cups (but absolutely with filler). It does not sound like much for a dog, but if you need to get that dog healthy, it is basically what you have to do. You can add green beans for the filler.

Take him swimming a couple times a week. And make him swim full out. If he doesn't swim full out (as in going well out into a pond or lake and working his legs), then you may want to check around for places that offer hydrotherapy. Some dogs out there wade around the edge of the water, and that's not enough exercise.

And do at least 1/4 a mile walks every day. Regular forced exercise is going to matter a big deal. Running around loose is not good enough because a dog who has lower energy is not going to burn too many calories by running around enough. If you can push that distance up to 1-2 miles, that's even better.

I don't do this, but conformation people build up their dogs muscles and keep them in shape by using water treadmills. And they will do this on a routine basis. <- That's probably getting kinda extreme. LOL. But it does give you something else to consider to keep your dog at a healthy weight.

If he's like my Jacks who goes through the same stuff (and is intact, so this weight gain stuff isn't completely to being fixed), just cutting a little on the meals, no treats between meals, upping exercise... helps get them to drop the pounds.

Both my guys had minor muscle injuries after a pretty long hike last summer and missed out on a lot of swimming that we'd normally do (I typically take my guys swimming 3 times a week and that used to keep both svelte). Bertie is young and did not gain too much, but Jacks did. He actually went up to 92# at the highest. Just exercise and diet alone got him to get back down to 84#. My preference is 80# with him just because he's at that age when tumors start popping out all over and tumors favor the fatties or something.


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post #4 of 10 (permalink) Old 05-19-2017, 01:36 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by joro32000 View Post
Have you considered testosterone injections? My Rufus was neutered way too early by the previous owner at the age of 5 months. I adopted him at the age of 2 and he was around 95 pounds. In the first year I tried to reduce his weight by giving him only about 1/3 of what my other not neutered golden ate. Rufus didn't lose a single gram and was always hungry. For the last year Rufus is on a testosterone injections every 2 weeks and all looks good. I haven't weighted him recently, but there is a visible difference in his appearance, regulars in the dog park notice the positive change.
Thank's for your reply, Joro32000 - that is not the route I would want to go. I started with the vet visit, a blood panel, and will try calorie restriction. Hopefully that will work.
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post #5 of 10 (permalink) Old 05-19-2017, 01:46 PM
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I think SD is not the world's best dog food- and is probably in the bottom tier of any rating system.
I read that you use bell peppers and green beans for treats, if you want to keep him on pro plan, how about adding a half can of unsalted green beans to each meal so he gets the bulk without the calories? Anytime I need to get weight off a dog that's how I do it, give them the meal they need to have weight loss and finish it off with green beans. You also might try finding something he enjoys working for, a ball or frisbee or swimming - something to burn some calories. It's hard to restrict them ,but I would not use a substandard food to get the weight off myself.
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post #6 of 10 (permalink) Old 05-19-2017, 01:59 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Megora View Post
I wouldn't switch to crappy food.

I would feed regular food or at least food that has lower fat, but not single digits low... but cut back on quantity.

You can cut back to 2 cups of food a day. If needed, you could even cut back to 1.5 cups (but absolutely with filler). It does not sound like much for a dog, but if you need to get that dog healthy, it is basically what you have to do. You can add green beans for the filler.

Take him swimming a couple times a week. And make him swim full out. If he doesn't swim full out (as in going well out into a pond or lake and working his legs), then you may want to check around for places that offer hydrotherapy. Some dogs out there wade around the edge of the water, and that's not enough exercise.

And do at least 1/4 a mile walks every day. Regular forced exercise is going to matter a big deal. Running around loose is not good enough because a dog who has lower energy is not going to burn too many calories by running around enough. If you can push that distance up to 1-2 miles, that's even better.

I don't do this, but conformation people build up their dogs muscles and keep them in shape by using water treadmills. And they will do this on a routine basis. <- That's probably getting kinda extreme. LOL. But it does give you something else to consider to keep your dog at a healthy weight.

If he's like my Jacks who goes through the same stuff (and is intact, so this weight gain stuff isn't completely to being fixed), just cutting a little on the meals, no treats between meals, upping exercise... helps get them to drop the pounds.

Both my guys had minor muscle injuries after a pretty long hike last summer and missed out on a lot of swimming that we'd normally do (I typically take my guys swimming 3 times a week and that used to keep both svelte). Bertie is young and did not gain too much, but Jacks did. He actually went up to 92# at the highest. Just exercise and diet alone got him to get back down to 84#. My preference is 80# with him just because he's at that age when tumors start popping out all over and tumors favor the fatties or something.


Thanks, Megora!


Initially, I thought about cutting down on his current food (Proplan) but even at 2 cups/day and nearly 900 calories I think is too much. I will look at purchasing a higher quality low-calorie food and see how he does on it. I'll continue with the green beans and bell peppers and will use those as an additional filler.


We walk 1 1/2 miles a day, not including time in the backyard. I should also take him swimming, tough. Great activity, especially since it's getting hot here already I am really hoping that, as you said, diet and exercise will slim him back down. I know he's struggling a bit already given the warm weather, humidity and the additional weight. We may just head out to the bay tomorrow


Thanks for your suggestions!
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post #7 of 10 (permalink) Old 05-19-2017, 02:18 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Prism Goldens View Post
I think SD is not the world's best dog food- and is probably in the bottom tier of any rating system.
I read that you use bell peppers and green beans for treats, if you want to keep him on pro plan, how about adding a half can of unsalted green beans to each meal so he gets the bulk without the calories? Anytime I need to get weight off a dog that's how I do it, give them the meal they need to have weight loss and finish it off with green beans. You also might try finding something he enjoys working for, a ball or frisbee or swimming - something to burn some calories. It's hard to restrict them ,but I would not use a substandard food to get the weight off myself.



Thanks, Robin! I agree with you on the food choice and have decided not to use SD. I really like the vet and value his opinion but going in that day, I had a feeling that is what he was going to suggest. He talked to me about the success his other furry patients had but I was still hesitant as I was aware that SD may not be the best choice. I will look for a good quality low-calorie food and use the green beans and bell peppers as fillers. My fear is that if I cut down on Proplan too much and supplement with the veggies, he may not get all of the nutrition he needs.


I will definitely try the swimming (this is what Megora suggested too) and continue with our walks. Thanks for your input!


I'll check in with everyone in a few weeks to update on his progress.....
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post #8 of 10 (permalink) Old 05-19-2017, 02:29 PM
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It's not uncommon for a Vet to recommend a prescription food such as Hills Science Diet or Royal Canin-at least that's what the Vets in my area recommend. The prescription formulas are formulated for specific health issues/concerns and Vets recommend them to help a particular one.

When you had your dog's blood work done, was his Thyroid checked? He's a little young to be having Thyroid issues but it should be considered.

As others have said, decrease the calorie intake and increase the amount of exercise.
A lot of people use Green beans when they want their dog to lose weight. You can decrease the food by 1/4 or 1/2 cup at each feeding, supplement with 1/4 or half cup of green beans to equal one cup each at feeding. The Green beans can be fresh, frozen or canned-just be sure they do not contain any salt.

Take a look at the snacks/treats you're giving to see how many calories they are too. The amount of calories should be added into the total amount of food you're giving per day.

Swimming is the best forum of exercise for your dog-it doesn't put any strain on the joints or bones.
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post #9 of 10 (permalink) Old 05-19-2017, 04:57 PM
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Never thought of low T for dogs great to know thanks
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post #10 of 10 (permalink) Old 05-19-2017, 05:31 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by CAROLINA MOM View Post
It's not uncommon for a Vet to recommend a prescription food such as Hills Science Diet or Royal Canin-at least that's what the Vets in my area recommend. The prescription formulas are formulated for specific health issues/concerns and Vets recommend them to help a particular one.

When you had your dog's blood work done, was his Thyroid checked? He's a little young to be having Thyroid issues but it should be considered.

As others have said, decrease the calorie intake and increase the amount of exercise.
A lot of people use Green beans when they want their dog to lose weight. You can decrease the food by 1/4 or 1/2 cup at each feeding, supplement with 1/4 or half cup of green beans to equal one cup each at feeding. The Green beans can be fresh, frozen or canned-just be sure they do not contain any salt.

Take a look at the snacks/treats you're giving to see how many calories they are too. The amount of calories should be added into the total amount of food you're giving per day.

Swimming is the best forum of exercise for your dog-it doesn't put any strain on the joints or bones.



That's what I figured with regards to the vet's food recommendation. It's the only brand they sell at their clinic. I did ask for a complete blood panel that included, thyroid, liver, kidney's, diabetes. Everything came back fine, so that was a relief.


So really, it just all comes down to a decrease in calories and exercise.


Thanks Carolina Mom
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