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Finn is a little over six months old now (sigh.. Growing way too fast!) and when I took him to the vet about 2 weeks ago, he was 48 pounds. He was the biggest puppy in his litter and his vet estimated he'd be 80-90 pounds. The vet hasn't expressed any concern over his growth but I didn't bring it up with her.

Finn only eats twice a day. I tried to leave his food out for him all the time when we first got him, but we had problems with ants getting into his food and it kept getting worse and worse. We couldn't even leave his food out for fifteen minutes without it becoming infested.

So now what I do, is I give him a full bowl of food in the morning (his bowls are medium sized) which he usually finishes. I refill the bowl and try to let him eat more periodically throughout the day, but he never wants to. He eats again around dinner time, but usually not even half of the bowl.

I can't see his ribs or anything and he looks normal to me, slender but not gaunt. He has plenty of energy, it takes him a long time from playing to get worn out. I guess I just want to make sure I'm not doing something wrong because I really expected to be feeding him more. He eats the same amount (if not less) than he did when he was 10 weeks old. Any input?
 

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Kate
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Measure out the food. Exact measurements.

With a golden retriever, I would expect to be feeding 2-4 cups of food a day.

Two seperate meals are fine - and perfectly healthy for your dog.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Measure out the food. Exact measurements.

With a golden retriever, I would expect to be feeding 2-4 cups of food a day.

Two seperate meals are fine - and perfectly healthy for your dog.
This makes me feel better! He eats 3-4 cups most days. I think it just seems like less because I was expecting him to be a food vacuum whenever he had something edible in front of him and he's not, lol.
 

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Kye & Coops Mom
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Our 6 mo old eats a little less than 3 cu a day divided into 2 meals. He also gets some carrots and broccoli for treats at training time in the afternoon. I would only leave his food down for about 10 minutes then take it up. Are you feeding him in the house? If so, you shouldn't have so much trouble with the ants as outside. He sounds great to me.

Don't worry, it takes a long time for their bodies to mature and our breed standard for males is 70-75 lbs. He will grow to what his genes say!
 

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My dog is definitely eating 2-3 cups per day but she feels "bony" to me. When I was giving her a bath today I noticed I can feel her butt bones by her tail. I can also feel her ribs if I run my hands along her side. The vet has never said anything about her being low weight so I assume she is fine?
 

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Kristy
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I have had problems with Mack (8 months old now) not being a good eater, I think he would prefer to hold out for yummy training treats than eat his dry kibble :(

He is skinny, only 48 pounds and close to 22 inches tall, my vet said he prefers the term "lean" and he's never yet had a dog that starved itself to death. He said better a little lean than a little overweight. I figured, ok.

I offer Mack his kibble (2 cups twice a day), he gets 15 minutes and then I pick up the bowl. I will usually try to crate him with his food to see if that helps him focus on it. It doesn't always work, but sometimes it will. I admit that I put a couple tablespoons of canned food on there and mix it up. I'm also going to admit that I sometimes cave and hand feed him his kibble which also usually works.... I understand your frustration....
 

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Kye & Coops Mom
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Vanfull - Coop got real thin looking at about 12 wks. All legs, skin and bones. Vet suggested upping his food for the morning meal for a time, so we increased to 1 1/2 cu for morning then 1 cu at the other 2 meals = so about 3 1/2 -4 cu total. About this time he started filling out and doubling in size. At 4 mo he started leaving some food at the morning meal, so I cut back to 1 cu for each meal. Then he stopped the noon meal. Still gets the 3 cu, just in 2 meals and continues to this now. Crazy, but he started leaving food about a mo ago, so again I cut back about 1/3 cu. He must be doing well and is a big boned boy, he weighed 55 lbs at last checkup (6 mo) and is in no way skinny anymore. I am guessing it is the better food, so he doesn't need as much as I was feeding my goldens 20 yrs ago, but now he eats about 2 2/3 cu. a day. If you think your babe is a bit skinny increase her food about 1/4 cu a meal for a while and look at her. Remember it is best if she stays on the lean side versus heavy side. Think it is a constant battle to us while they are pups to determine the right amount of food, your eyes and hands tell you more of this than comparisons of other dogs. Each dog is different, each body is at a different stage of development. There is no firm answer to how much to feed.
 
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Lucy is 19 weeks so I was thinking it might be just her adjusting to a growth spurt. Her legs are so long now! I put out a 1 1/2 cups twice a day and she doesn't finish it. I have been trying to put the rest in a kong but she doesn't care for that. I have been doing training so she has treats during the day and we have also been playing games with treats to keep her busy with the cold. Our other puppy goes in next week so I was planning to just take Lucy along and have her weight checked. Thank you for all the information!
 
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