When dogs lose weight, it is often an instinct for dog parents to make a diet plan that helps their pet to add weight. Whether you choose to fatten up your dog on a raw diet or kibble diet, what is of utmost importance is to choose a healthy diet plan.
Raw diet for dogs has its perks: your canine pet not only adds weight but also regains its healthy glowing skin. However, before trying to fatten up a dog on a raw diet, it is imperative to ascertain the cause of underweight in your pet.
Malnourished dogs should be fed better to return them to a healthy state. Are you trying to make your dog gain some weight using a raw diet? If your answer is yes, highlighted below are five effective ways to fatten up a dog on a raw diet and notice rewarding results.
7 Ways To Fatten Up A Dog On Raw Diet
1. Make A Meal Plan
The first step is to make a meal timetable, including a list of healthy food to feed your dog. Some good choices of raw food to feed them are; raw eggs, turkey, chicken, pork liver, bones, vegetables and fruits, beef, etc. Making a food time table makes every meal hour accounted for.
Also, it becomes easier to fatten up your dog on a raw diet when you know what meal to feed it and at what hour of the day.
Moreover, choose raw food with fat and protein over grainy meals, e.g., fatty meats, raw eggs, full-fat cottage cheese, will help to fatten up your dog. Also, food rich in vitamin B, such as liver, is good to help your pet add weight.
2. Increase The Food Intake
The key to helping dogs gain weight is to increase their calorie intake. The increase in food portion and calories depends on two criteria:
- the breed of dog
- the metabolism and physical activity
Smaller dog breeds have smaller stomachs and therefore, will need just a moderate portion of food. On the other hand, larger breeds can eat larger portions of food. Likewise, dogs with higher body metabolism burn more calories.
Hence, they need to take in as more calories than they burn to add weight. Moreover, usually, home pets are not as active as police dogs and guard dogs. Hence, the latter will need to consume more calories than the former.
If you want to fatten a dog on a raw diet, feed it with raw food with high calories like Pork, raw eggs, beef, turkey, and chicken.
There are 72 calories in one large raw egg, 54 calories in one ounce of turkey, 71 calories in one ounce of beef, 68 calories in one ounce of chicken, and 90 calories in one ounce of pork.
3. Feed The Dog In Bits
While trying to fatten your dog on a raw diet, it may be tempting to overfeed it with large portions of food at a time. Instead of serving all the meals at once, serve its food in bits.
For example, make it eat four small meals a day instead of two large meals.
Besides, feeding your canine pet in bits will help it to adjust to the new feeding pattern. Also, it will help to prevent gastrointestinal problems that may arise from overfeeding the dog.
4. Feed The Dog With Its Favorite Meal
Some dogs, like their best friends, can be picky eaters. Feeding your it with food it dislikes could be why your canine pet lost some significant amount of weight.
To fatten up your dog on a raw diet, feed it with its favorite meal. It is common knowledge that dogs love to eat bone.
Hence, provide turkey and meat with bones for it to eat. Also, reward it with some yogurt as dessert for your canine pet anytime it finishes its meal. Rewarding your dog to eat will encourage it to drop its picky habit.
5. Consult A Veterinary
Make your dog see a veterinary because it could be sick. Also, the Vet can help to plan the diet based on the health, wellness, and lifestyle of your dog. Ask the doctor to examine your canine and calculate its current and ideal body condition score; that will help to determine the quantity of food to feed your canine and the nutritional requirements needs.
6. Add Vegetables And Fruits To Its Diet
When raw feeders try to fatten up their dogs on a raw diet, they often leave out fruits and vegetables from the meal plan. Meat and animal produce are not the only types of raw food beneficial to your pets.
Dogs need some fruit and vegetables because of their nutritional benefits.
In as much as they are adding weight, they need all the nutrients they can get to look healthy. Vegetables and fruits can provide supplemental nutrients essential for weight gains such as protein, fats, fiber, and carbohydrates.
Also, fruits and vegetables come in handy as a treat for dogs, especially the picky eaters. Some fruits to include are:
- berries (frozen)
- carrots (grated)
- spinach (shredded)
- kale (shredded)
- apple (sliced without the seeds)
Add the fruits and vegetables as toppings over dog food to increase their nutritional levels.
7. Make Your Dog Do Some Exercises
In as much as the goal is to make your dog add some weight, you need to make it partake in some exercises to burn up excess fat and stay healthy. Take your canine for walks outside, play catch with it or put it on a treadmill to burn up the excess fat.
Exercise Patience To Fatten Up Your Dog On Raw Diet
As early explained, don’t rush your dog to add weight because doing so can lead to more health problems. The problem could be mild such as stomach upset or refeeding syndrome. For instance, overfeeding could lead to refeeding syndrome, which causes loss of beneficial electrolytes.
As a result of that, your canine pet may exhibit symptoms such as weakness, confusion, fatigue, difficulty in breathing, high blood pressure, heart failure, etc.
Furthermore, excessive weight loss could be a sign of other health conditions in your dog. Apart from malnourishment, loss of weight can also be caused by worm infestation, gloomy mood, lack of proper care and attention, etc.
Hence, it is crucial to consult your veterinary, especially when your dog shows no sign of improvement.