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Thread: Update on Abbey

  1. #21
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    Hi Karlin:

    The vet of course has mentioned her weight and for some reason she has gained alot of weight this past year. Probably because she's lazy. We are working on it. She gets a very small treat in the a.m. and a very small one at night and have decreased her food. It's going to take awhile to get it off of her. Very interesting that you say this. Has me deep thinking here. We don't have any carpet in this house so don't know on that one. In regards to her feet I do groom her myself so will make sure as she's overdue as I've been delaying it as want to get it done right before my surgery but I don't think that's the problem as she's bee doing this for awhile but it IS getting worse so maybe that is why. Wouldn't I feel dumb if it was that. In regards to her weight we used to feed 1/3 cup in the a.m. and 1/3 at night and hubby is the one on the treats scene so I have no idea why he has been giving her. Its hard to knock into his head that these guys are just like approximately 15 pounds or Abbey 20 and its not like giving something to a 150 pound person. He's taken her to the vet lately because its easier for him than me regarding work.

    In order to get weight off her as quickly as possible what would you give. I don't want to starve her and with her on steroids she is hungry.

    Thanks for replying Karlin--sure has my head thinking.
    Linda, Georgia, USA
    Winston--shih tzu-male, Darby female tri, Bentley male blenheim and Chelsea, black-tan
    Abbey my beloved tri who is so embedded in my heart--RIP Sweet Princess

  2. #22
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    I'm sorry you are having these problems but i have to agree with Karlin that I think the weight is at the very least exacerbating the issues. If you look back to your own videos of her after her op, she is considerably smaller then but looks like she was already carrying a bit of weight?

    It is hard when they are on steroids, they are going to be constantly hungry unfortunately. I don't know that it is laziness to be honest, with her health issues and weight it will be hard for her to get around.

    What are you feeding right now? I think you feed dry food? If you want to feed a dry food, maybe find something high in oats that will help fill her up. YOu can also give lots of veg, search on the board for suggestions, but carrot is good,also green beans, frozen sweetcorn [never give the cooked cobs as these can cause a blockage]

    Alternatively go for a raw diet so avoiding unnecessary carbohydrate.

    You could also try feeding her food in a kong or some kind of food dispenser, so she has to work at it - will keep her occupied for longer - you can feed some of the raw in a kong too!

    There is something you can apply to floors to stop them being so slippery, will look it up

    Also it does look like her paws need trimming - I do mine every month - the extra fur will make it hard for her to gain traction. You can also use paw wax on her paws - Karlin has made some good suggestions too.

    Could you put them outside when you are getting meals ready, so she is not getting quite so excited and having some of these problems?

    If she is having problems standing like this, maybe help her by passing a towel under her belly and gently raise her to her feet, she will hurt herself even more by doing what she is doing right now
    Nicki and the Cavalier Clan Our photos www.scotlandimagery.com
    Supporting www.rupertsfund.com and www.cavaliermatters.org

  3. #23
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    PS scroll down on here on Laura Lang's site for a photo guide to ideal weight

    http://roycroftinformationcenter.com...ing%20new.html
    Nicki and the Cavalier Clan Our photos www.scotlandimagery.com
    Supporting www.rupertsfund.com and www.cavaliermatters.org

  4. #24
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    Poor little Abbey. She has just the sweetest face. To be honest, she gets twice as much food as my biggest boy Oliver, who weighs in at 25 pounds. He gets 1/3 cup once a day. Any more and he would be Mr. Tubbo. I also give him green beans in his food as a filler. Sure, he's always asking for food, but he only gets a biscuit treat around 5 p.m. and he knows how to tell time!!! During the day, I will give him some fresh fruits and vegies if I'm in the kitchen. Riley is also on steroids and I was aware of the tendency to put on weight with them, so i had to just ignore her big brown pleading eyes - she weighs basically the same as when she had her surgery 3 years ago. Good luck and keep us updated.
    Bev
    Oliver (blenheim, born 3/2001), Riley (black & tan, born 8/2002,), Madison (ruby, born 9/2003), and Oz (tri-color, born 7/2007)

  5. #25
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    Linda,

    This is very tough to say without sounding unkind and insensitive (and I've been accused of that recently!).

    Abbey is morbidly obese, and that extra weight will take roughly three years off of her life even if she were healthy in every other way and SM was not a factor. The combination of weight, hardwood floors and her disability from SM pretty much makes it impossible for her to safely walk - she just can't get the traction she needs. When she slides around as she does in the video, she is much more likely to suffer additional damage to her spine and joints. She may also be coming to the age where general arthritis and degenerative disk disease are also playing a part in her rear weakness.

    You are FAR from the only member here in this situation. I often cringe when I look at photos and videos of many (most?) Cavaliers here and I never say anything because it would be seen as being "mean." Weight is something totally in control of the owner, and the answer is to simply find a good quality food and feed less of it until you see a steady and gradual weight loss. There is no magic food or anything else - simply a good quality of food (not a "diet" food) and the right amount. Abbey is not "lazy" - she is eating too much. The prednisone is a huge problem in your situation because of the appetite increase - you have a tough situation because of the steroids and the inability to do much exercise. The "right" amount of food is the amount at which you see results. You will feel as if you are "starving" her and she will act as if you are - it's obvious that she (like most) loves her food! So you've got a difficult decision, and you need all members in your home to get on board.

    Hardwood floors are a curse to dogs everywhere - since they are in vogue in US homes, I've seen more and more and more problems for dogs. Any dog other than a young, very fit dog has problems walking on slick floors. Even young dogs slide when running on hardwood floors, and owners think it is amusing. It is not as they can hurt themselves. Are there any surfaces in nature other than ice that mimic a slick floor? I always seem to have geriatric dogs in my house, which is why I have resisted changing the (old-fashioned, out of style) carpeted rooms in my home to hardwood. I can do that when the dogs are gone and I'm ready to sell the house. Even my kitchen has rugs - I buy inexpensive room sized rugs at Garden Ridge or Home Depot and cover the kitchen. Dogs with any disability at all or past middle age simply shouldn't have to walk on slick floors. People keep senior dogs on slick floors for easy clean up and it just isn't fair. When I have older dogs on diuretics or with continence problems, I train them to use pooch pads (washable very sturdy reusable pads that also control urine odor very well). I've never had a senior dog that didn't quickly learn about pooch pads - even a blind dog. I would recommend that you purchase some inexpensive room sized area rugs and try them in the room where she spends most of her time. You might be amazed at how much better she will do.

    Best wishes and good thoughts - esp. as you face your surgery,

    Pat
    Pat B
    Atlanta, GA

  6. #26
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    Obesity/overweight is a really big (no pun intended! ) issue with cavaliers. This breed is always hungry or will eat even if not, so a willingness to eat can never be used as a measure of whether the dog needs to be fed -- with very rare exceptions amongst individual dogs (in my experience only the rare adult has any self control, and most puppies will til about age 1).

    Cavaliers will eat themselves to death -- literally. Like labs and some other breeds, they seem genetically to not have any internal 'switch off' for when they are full (which I have read somewhere as being the actual cause of this issue -- and no surprise a cavalier is on the bag for Royal Canin's low calorie food... -- they are so well known for being overweight/obese; my vet says he rarely ever sees them in correct healthy weight ). I walk other dogs for other people and have friends with other breeds and absolutely none are as greedy and as constantly begging for food as cavaliers. That is why free feeding should never be done (it sets bad habits anyway -- the expectation of constantly available food) and many good breeders actually have an obesity exclusion in their puppy contracts -- as the breed is so prone to MVD, and any extra weight hurries on the condition, makes it worse and leads to an earlier death.

    Laura Lang's site is excellent on correct weight. She has noted many times herself that vets can be the worst at advising owners on weight of their dogs -- many owners take it very personally if told their dogs are overweight so vets often tend to only say something when the dogs are seriously obese.

    The most I feed any one dog is Jaspar (17lbs) -- who has a very high metabolism and is very active. He gets about 2/3rds cup of food a day. He runs like mad and gets a couple of very active playtimes every week. But as Laura says -- all dogs are different; some much larger dogs need less than that. Some smaller ones need more. I watch all their waistlines and lower/raise their food depending on how they are doing.

    One thing for any dog owner -- never use the recommended amounts on the tin/bag as a standard. Almost always, they are way too high, and this is especially true of treats! The number of dog biscuits typically 'recommended' per day as ADDITIONS to a cavalier's regular meal would alone be 1.5 times the amount of calories I feed many of them as their ENTIRE caloric intake for the day. So that's like eating another meal and a half a day! Many treats are really really high in calories -- a whole pig's ear for example is equal to about 2 full meals. Most dental treats are very high in calories too -- a single Dentastix for a cavalier is nearly the calories of a full normal meal.
    Karlin
    Cavaliers: Jaspar Lily Tansy Libby Mindy
    In memory: Lucy Leo
    Cavalier SM Information site:www.smcavaliers.com

  7. #27
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    I forgot she is on prednisone as well -- one common side affect is potential weight gain as it changes their ability to metabolise food well. That means even less food than normal and as much exercise as possible.

    It might be worth discussing prednisone and whether something else might be used, with Dr Shores.

    Dogs are definitely not naturally 'lazy'. Generally if they are reluctant to move about and be active it is because something hurts (likely with Abbey as she has a painful disease), they have not enjoyed outings for some reason (maybe a dog having attacked them etc or walks being too long/difficult), they have gained wright to the point where they are not interested in moving/they struggle to move and are uncomfortable because they are too fat already...

    Eevery dog with SM is going to be different. If an individual cannot do much exercise because of pain and disability, we must respect that and therefore cut back on food to address the fact that they get too many calories for what their bodies can burn off.

    Obesity is an absolute killer. A recent study on labs estimated an overweight dog loses four years of life.
    Karlin
    Cavaliers: Jaspar Lily Tansy Libby Mindy
    In memory: Lucy Leo
    Cavalier SM Information site:www.smcavaliers.com

  8. #28
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    Recent pet health information data in various animal species provides new insites into the genetic basis of obesity. Certain breeds are significantly predisposed to obesity. Some examples: Cairn terriers, West Highland white terriers, Scottish terriers, Shetland sheepdogs, bassett hounds, Cavalier King Charles spaniels, daschunds, beagles, cocker spaniels, and Labrador retrievers. On the other hand, certain breeds like the various sight hounds appear to be resistant to developing obesity. Have your dogs health care or Wellness exam done at least once annually and catch problems early.
    In summary, take care of your petís preventative health care with body weight control, moderate exercise and use of Nutraceuticalslike chondroitin/glucosamines as in Dasuquin, Omega 3 FA like Welactin Omega 3 FA, superoxide dismutase like Oxstrin and SAMe as in Denosyl for long term help in all organ functions.
    http://www.veterinarypetcarenewslett...e-problem-pt3/

    A couple of handy charts:






    Attached Images Attached Images
    Karlin
    Cavaliers: Jaspar Lily Tansy Libby Mindy
    In memory: Lucy Leo
    Cavalier SM Information site:www.smcavaliers.com

  9. #29
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    Hiya,

    The drugs these little ones have to endure do take a toll and I remember Ruby pilling on the pounds. I was completely oblivious to how chunky she was getting until our Obedience trainer called her a Pudding and said she was tubby.
    Yes I was taken aback and really offended but I weighed her and realsied she had pilled on 2 kg in about 9 months.

    I am lucky that I live alone and I'm the only person in charge of her feeding but she is an absolute glutten around food and she gets very very demanding about her food as well.

    I put her on Burns High Oats which is for over weight dogs and she only got 75grams a day split in to 2 meals. I also weaned her on to raw vegetables (something that she absolutely refused to eat for quite a while) by buying the frozen Natures Menu Veggie Nuggets. They also do a mix nugget which includes a meat of some kind (your choice) which also helps to get them on the veggies. Slowly but surely she started to really enjoy the raw veg which is a blessing as she now has them as snacks.

    Green Beans, Brocoli, Sweet Potato (cooked though) carrots, fruit aswell.

    I maintain her on 70% ish of the recommended allowance and bulk it up with lots of veg and boiled chicken as a treat a few times a week so as she doesn't feel too hard done by.

    I have managed over two years or so got her from 12.2 kg at her heaviest to just under 10kg, I'd still like to get her down a little bit more but all the time she is active Im happy with that and the Vet has said he is very happy with her weight.

    She is pretty fluffy at the mo but she could still use a few more grams off of her!



    On the days where she is feeling un well and doesn't really get up I just feed her half the amount she would normally have.

    The only treats she has are rawhide chews and treats I use for training is homemade liver cake so I know exactly whats in it!

    I hope this helps she is such a beautiful little lady and good luck with the surgery and hope the vets come up with an answer for you both!!!!

    Karen

    Ruby - my stunning soul mate who defies the odds every day
    Charlie- my angel at heart and devil at play


  10. #30
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    Dang it just spent 20 minutes typing and network went down. grrrr.

    Thank you all for your honesty and I expect honesty. Ok they are on Taste of the Wild and the recommended feeding is:

    10 to 20 lb.: 2-1/3 to 3-3/4 cups per day at 6 to 12 weeks, 2 to 3 cups per day at 3 to 4 months, 1-1/3 to 2-1/3 cups per day at 5 to 7 months, 1 to 1-3/4 cups per day at 8 to 12 months, 3/4 to 1-1/3 cups per day for adult dogs

    Obviously the problem is treats and somebody mentioned dental treats.. Hmmm we started this year giving them greenies so I bet that has contributed to the problem ALOT.

    I want to keep the routine of twice a day feeding as they expect that and it will be a nightmare to change it as these guys know how to tell time. We are going to give carrots and we have treats that are probably a fifth of the size of what they are getting now so will give two of them a day.

    Now how much do you all recommend to feed them per feeding? 1/4 cup?????

    In regards to hardwood floors we actually put them in because of the dogs. We don't have carpet anywhere.

    In regards to throw rugs I gave up on them as some here think they are pee pads.

    Yes she is bigger than pre-surgery. Its been the last year. We can't get her off prednisone--we tried and it was a nightmare.

    Thanks all--I'm sick right now--got a cold yesterday and feeling pretty rough right now and praying I get better in a week as surgery is 9 days away.

    You guys rock!!!!
    Linda, Georgia, USA
    Winston--shih tzu-male, Darby female tri, Bentley male blenheim and Chelsea, black-tan
    Abbey my beloved tri who is so embedded in my heart--RIP Sweet Princess

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