View Full Version : Is Carley really big enough?

Harley & Carley
4th July 2007, 04:43 PM
My 2 girls will turn 1 year old the beginning of September. They are on RC Special 30 with a spoonful of Natural Balance turkey roll mixed in and get 2/3 c/day. In the morning they get a greenie biscuit and a little banana.
My biggest girl is a great eater and weighs in at about 13 pounds. Carley, on the other hand, has always been and still is a terribly finicky eater, and still weighs a little less than 9 pounds.
She rarely seems interested in eating and refuses to eat at the same time Harley is eating - waiting until afterward and only if I am in close proximity of her. When she will eat, she does eat all of her meal,but doesnt seem to be gaining any weight.She was been about the same weight for 3-4 months.
We have done the 15 minute thing several times, once so much that she was losing weight and the vet told me to stop. Hs says that while she remains really very small, she doesnt seem to be malnourished.
My breeder expected her to be small, but even she says she is so much smaller than her other littermates and her parents.
Any ideas on what might be the problem or am I just making a big deal out of nothing?

4th July 2007, 05:39 PM
Personally I really dont think you have anything to worry about. Chloe turns 1 in 2 weeks time and she weighs under 7 pounds. She is so tiny but the vets said not to worry. Just like humans they come in all shapes and sizes! as long as she is happy and has plenty of energy it wouldnt concern me. Better to be on the smaller side than overweight!

Cathy Moon
4th July 2007, 05:44 PM
I would put Harley in a separate room for meals, maybe behind a baby gate, and see if Carley is more interested in eating. Does Harley seem to dominate Carley very often?

When my dogs were pups, I'm pretty sure they got 1/2 cup of RC per meal. (Now as adults they eat less than that.)

Perhaps you could mix some chicken, scrambled egg, or high quality canned dog food into her kibble. Or perhaps make her the satin balls recipe:

Harley & Carley
4th July 2007, 06:29 PM
I have tried putting her or Harley in a crate, but when I do, she only focuses on getting out of or into the crate. I know if there were a version of dog ADD, she would have it. Any distraction, including being isolated, hinders mealtime. I will try it in a different room though.

Harley & Carley
4th July 2007, 06:38 PM
I am thinking about making the satin balls recipe. What amount should I feed her. The site said about 1 packet/day, which is a pound of meat, but that was for a boxer, I think.
i was thinking about 1/2 packet/day???

Cathy Moon
4th July 2007, 06:54 PM
Try making just a small amount of the recipe to see if she'll eat it. You can cook it if you don't like the idea of raw. Perhaps you could freeze most of it and use small amounts as a supplement to her RC.

4th July 2007, 07:25 PM
If the vet isn't worried about her weight, than I wouldn't be. Some dogs are just finicky eaters but it is important not to be encouraging a dog in this behaviour, something it is really easy to do (eg when you say she will only eat whe you are in the vicinity, and won;t eat when Harley is eating, suggests she has learned ways of keeping you in the vicinity and making the meal also primarily a social event and a game... it can be very hard not to accidentally encourage things like this too; we have all been there! I think crating her while she eats so that you and Harley are not part of the equation might help. I'd consider feeding her or Harley in another room, each within a crate but not in view of each other, and se if that helps. Have you ever boarded them? Did she do the same finicky eating when staying with someone else? Thats usually a clue as to whether there's a bit of manipulation going on along with the fact that she just doesn't care much for eating.

I'd try the satin balls recipe discussed in an earlier eating thread for gaining weight, and maybe even a prepared raw or homecooked diet to see if she eats better on those.

Now: if the vet IS worried about her weight and is concerned she seems far too small; yes, there are medical conditions that can cause a dog's growth to be stunted. Maybe the vet should be looking into those as some might also cause her not to have much appetite. Or I would get a second opinion from a different vet, perhaps? Smetimes a different person's eyes see things that others don;t, or maybe a second opinion will put you more at ease as to whther you are dealing with a problem.

Many dogs don;t grow much after about 9 months BTW so that wouldn;t be that unusual. Jaspar had most of his size and weight by about 6-7 months and just filled out a bit more after that.

Cathy Moon
4th July 2007, 08:15 PM
Would it be possible that they might have 'littermate syndrome', where they spend all their time together and are inseparable? I learned about littermate syndrome from one of our dog trainers, when I was raising two puppies at once. They weren't from the same litter, but they were only one month apart in age.

The trainer told me to separate them several times per day, and take each of them places on his/her own, as well as to walk them and train them separately. If puppies spend all their time together as a twosome, it can have detrimental effects on one or both of them.

I think when I suggested putting them in separate rooms for feeding, I had 'littermate syndrome' in the back of my mind. Sometimes this syndrome can manifest itself in such a way that one puppy always dominates the other, so this would be one way to help counteract that.

Harley & Carley
4th July 2007, 08:24 PM
They do things separately and sleep in separate crates, but they are together often. I would say that Harley is the more dominant but I think it is because she know she is bigger. Carley is every bit as assertive as Harley is.
I will try feeding in separate areas, and start the satin balls. Should I use it instead of her regular meal and will it make it harder to switch her back to the dry kibble later? How much would youi recommenc feeding?
I am also going to go back to the vet after a week or so of the satin balls and just have him check her out again.
She has not been kenneled, but they will be in Late August when we travel to Puerto Rico for 10 days. We are going to do a trial run at the kennel next month to see how they fare.

Harley & Carley
4th July 2007, 08:38 PM
one more thing----------- do I add it gradually or just start her on it as a full feeding volume? Should I expect GI upset??

Cathy Moon
4th July 2007, 08:52 PM
I would start off feeding just a small amount, like a teaspoon, and watch her poops to see how it affects her. I would continue to feed her the normal amount of kibble as well.

I'm not sure how much satin balls to feed her daily. Would you feed her this by itself, after you've gradually increased the amount, or with kibble? I'm guessing I would try 1/4 cup of it with her daily kibble.

Harley & Carley
9th July 2007, 06:11 PM
well, we have tried it for several days now and she does eat the satin balls, but still is funny about eating - she eats a little, then walks around, eats a litle more. She will only eat it plain, not mixed with her kibble.
She still wont eat when Harley eats, and if I separate them visually, she doesnt eat at all. she eats after harley.
any more ideas?

Cathy Moon
11th July 2007, 03:39 AM
Do you think she is dependent on him? Does she pay attention to him most of the time?

I would probably spend a little extra one on one time with her, and hopefully she'll reach a point where she can eat regardless of whether or not he's in the same room.

It difficult to understand the dynamics of their relationship without seeing.