My 12 year old Boston Terrier is in great health, but has had tummy issues. We have switched him from dry to wet which resolved his nausea, but he eating 2 cans a day and is still too skinny. He has been on 2 cans a day since the middle of Dec. and is not really putting on weight. He is eating w/d low gastrointestinal, which is a low fat food. Can we switch him to a higher fat food? This is our trusted vet’s recommendation, but we would like to see him get back up to his optimal weight of 25 lbs.
Hound Dog MomParticipant
Hi busterbrown –
I experienced a similar issue with one my dogs. When she was a puppy she was extremely skinny – it seemed like no matter how much I fed her she was just a skeleton. I couldn’t get any weight on her until I switched her to a high fat diet. She eats a grain-free raw diet now of about 45-55% protein, 30%-40% fat and 15-20% carbohydrates. She’s still slim, but I’ve finally got it to where her ribs and hips aren’t protruding too awfully bad. She put on about 8 pounds in the first 4 months I had her on a high fat raw diet. If your dog needs to gain weight and the excess fat doesn’t cause any intestinal distress, I definitely think higher fat is the way to go. W/d is an extremely poor quality food – as are most prescription foods – and while I go to my vet for advice on lots of things, nutrition isn’t one of them. In some rare/extreme cases I think prescription foods can help stabilize a serious medical condition but I don’t personally believe they should ever be a long term solution. With a sensitive stomach, I think all you really need to do is try some foods and find one that doesn’t cause any issues. I’m willing to bet there’s a non-prescription food that will work. I’d recommend something grain-free and limited in ingredients. Nature’s Variety Instinct has some limited ingredient canned foods that are moderately high in fat, EVO has a 95% Meat line that is high fat and very limited in ingredients, ZiwiPeak would be another great choice. I’d also like to mention Abady – they have a granular food line that is excellent for putting on weight (it’s high fat and very calorie-dense with nearly 800 calories per cup) and dogs with sensitive stomachs seem to do well on it. Abady makes some great canned foods too so that may be something you could check out.
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