How much should my dog weigh?

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an overweight brown and white dog laying on tile floor
Dr. Sara Ochoa DVM author ofHow much should my dog weigh
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As your dog is growing you may wonder what they should weigh. Also, many dogs start to gain excessive weight as they get older. Keeping your dog healthy weight is best to keep your dog healthy and happy.

Overweight dogs will also cause many health issues such as joint problems, diabetes, or other health-related problems. Also, being too thin can also cause problems.

With thin dog's veterinarians worry about malnutrition and even death. This article will explain how much your dog should weigh and what you can do to make sure your dog stays at a healthy weight.


Important things to remember about a dog’s weight

There are many important things to remember about your dog's weight. It is not a specific number that your dog needs to be but a range. This range will depend on your dog's age, diet, living conditions, and breed. More active dogs will be on the thinner side but should eat more food than an older dog who spends all day sleeping. Make sure that you are feeding a well-balanced high-quality diet and allowing your dog plenty of exercises and they should be able to maintain a healthy weight. By maintaining a healthy weight your dog will live a long and healthy life. Being too thin or being overweight can cause many health problems that can be detrimental to your dog.


How to tell if a dog is overweight

There are many different ways to tell if your dog is overweight.  When looking at your dog if they are overweight you will notice that their stomach is bloated or distended.   Their stomach will be at the same level as their chest and sometimes their stomach will even extend downwards beyond the level of their chest. Most overweight dogs will be eating way too much food and not exercising as much.   Many of the times when you pet your overweight dog you will not be able to feel any of their ribs or backbone even with a little pressure. This is due to the large pads of fat that accumulate in these areas. When petting your dog if you feel many areas of fat pads then most likely your dog is overweight.


How to tell if a dog is underweight

There are many ways to also tell that your dog is underweight. Dogs who are underweight are usually easier to figure out than for overweight dogs. Many times, when you are petting your dog they will feel a little bit more bony than usual or you may easily feel their ribs or hip bones. Dogs who are too thin will have their ribs showing. In extreme circumstances, you will be able to see your dog’s ribs, backbone or leg bones without touching your dog. You will also notice a decrease in fat around their heads. You will also notice that your dog is a little more lethargic. This is due to the lack of nutrition needed for exercise and activities. Dogs who are underweight will also be drinking more water or eating things that they should not be eating.  

Some dogs are very high energy or recovering from a medical condition and will be a little on the thin side. If you think that your dog is too skinny, schedule an appointment with your veterinarian to make sure that your dog is at a healthy weight. Being too thin can cause other health problems.


How much should my dog weigh?

When trying to figure out how much your dog should weigh, ask your veterinarian for advice. They can help you figure out what a good weight is for your dog not matter if they are pure breed or a mixed breed. It is best to follow your veterinarian's recommendation on the best weight for your dog. Older dogs will weigh less than physically active adult dogs because they do not eat as much as a middle-aged dog. Also, puppies will weigh less as they are still growing and reaching their adult weight. You may also find many charts listed around the internet to help you determine a good weight for your dog. Your veterinarian will be the best place to get advice on the proper weight of your dog as dogs of the same breed can even greatly vary in size.


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Ways to keep your dog in the ideal weight range

Now that you have figured out the ideal weight of your dog, there are many things that you can do to help keep your dog at this weight. Your veterinarian can help you develop a nutritional plan for feeding your dog the right amount of food. Make sure that you follow a proper feeding schedule and do not overfeed or underfeed your dog. By feeding the proper nutrition at the correct amount your dog should stay at a healthy weight.

By maintaining a regular exercise schedule, you will also help your dog stay at a proper weight. Exercise can help your dog lose a few pounds when they have gained a little unwanted weight. By constantly exercising with your dog, they will maintain a healthy weight. If you are having trouble maintaining your dog at a healthy weight take your dog to the vet for a checkup and make sure that there is nothing that is causing these weight problems.

The ideal weight for each dog is different. There are many different breeds ad different size dogs there is no one weight all dogs should strive to meet. There are many things that you can do to help make sure that your dog does stay at a healthy weight. By feeding them properly, giving them plenty of exercise and taking them to the veterinarian for regular checkups your dog will stay healthy and happy. It is much easier to begin proper feeding when your dog is young this helps train them on the correct amount of food to expect at every meal and not allow them to overeat.


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Meet The Author 

Dr. Sara Ochoa DVM

Since she was a little girl, she knew that her dream was to become a veterinarian. With a tremendous passion and love for animals that makes her a great source of knowledge for others. She lives happily with her husband Greg and her babies Ruby the Schnoodle, and Bam-Bam the bunny.