Dog Weight Chart

Food, Fitness and how to keep them healthy.

Postby amazincc » January 8th, 2011, 4:45 pm

http://www.placervillevet.com/canine%20 ... dition.htm

Chart and information courtesy of Ralston Purina


Evaluating your dog's weight
How skinny is "pretty skinny"? How heavy is "not as thin as he should be"? The Purina body condition system provides a uniform way to describe a pet's weight, from "emaciated" to "grossly obese"

EMACIATED
Ribs, lumbar vertebrae, pelvic bones and all bony prominences evident form a distance. No discernable body fat. Obvious loss of muscle mass.

VERY THIN
Ribs, lumbar vertebrae and pelvic bones easily visible. No palpable fat. Some evidence of other bony prominence. Minimal loss of muscle mass

THIN
Ribs easily palpated and may be visible with no palpable fat. Tops of lumbar vertebrae visible. Pelvic bones becoming prominent. Obvious waist and abdominal tuck

UNDERWEIGHT
Ribs easily palpable, with minimal fat covering. Waist easily noted, viewed form above. Abdominal tuck evident.

IDEAL
Ribs palpable without excess fat covering. Waist observed behind ribs when viewed from above. Abdomen tucked when viewed from the side.

OVERWEIGHT
Ribs palpable with slight excess fat covering. Waist is discernable viewed from above but is not prominent. Abdominal tuck apparent.

HEAVY
Ribs palpable with difficulty, heavy fat cover. Noticeable fat deposits over lumbar area and base of tail. Waist absent or barely visible. Abdominal tuck may be absent.

OBESE
Ribs not palpable under heavy fat cover, or palpable only with significant pressure. Heavy fat deposits over lumbar area and base of tail. Waist absent. No abdominal tuck. Obvious abdominal distension may be present.

GROSSLY OBESE

*Click on the above link to see corresponding pics*
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Postby madremissy » January 8th, 2011, 4:52 pm

Thanks for posting this Christine.
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Postby amazincc » January 8th, 2011, 6:11 pm

According to that chart Baby Chicken could stand to lose a few pounds. :oops: :oops: :oops:


Dr. Moore thinks he's at a great weight, but he does feel a lil' fluffy to me. :|
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Postby mnp13 » January 8th, 2011, 6:16 pm

Wow, I think that is VERY incorrect, especially in relation to the description to the ribs.
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Postby amazincc » January 8th, 2011, 6:19 pm

mnp13 wrote:Wow, I think that is VERY incorrect, especially in relation to the description to the ribs.



Really??? :shock:
That's the exact same chart that's hanging in each exam room at my vets office.

Can you elaborate?
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Postby madremissy » January 8th, 2011, 6:45 pm

amazincc wrote:
mnp13 wrote:Wow, I think that is VERY incorrect, especially in relation to the description to the ribs.



Really??? :shock:
That's the exact same chart that's hanging in each exam room at my vets office.

Can you elaborate?

x2
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Postby mnp13 » January 8th, 2011, 7:00 pm

My comments in blue

---------------------
ideal weight for a dog depends on breed as well, but I understand that they are looking for an average. The ideal body type of a sighthound is nothing like the idea body type of a lab or other water dog - who does have more fat on their body because of going into cold water, etc.

VERY THIN
Ribs, lumbar vertebrae and pelvic bones easily visible. No palpable fat. Some evidence of other bony prominence. Minimal loss of muscle mass

THIN indicates that you need to put a considerable amount of weight on the dog
Ribs easily palpated and may be visible with no palpable fat. one of the main things that I notice on a dog is if you can see ribs. this description says that they are easily felt and "may be visible" if you can't see at least a hint of rib on a Pit Bull, Sight Hound, or many other breeds, the dog is fat. Tops of lumbar vertebrae visible. Pelvic bones becoming prominent. Obvious waist and abdominal tuck. Waist and tuck should be obvious, in almost every breed.

UNDERWEIGHT again, they want you to put weight on your dog
Ribs easily palpable, with minimal fat covering.here again, ribs "easily palpable." So according to this, a dog is underweight if you have to "feel for" their ribs and you can locate them easily Waist easily noted, viewed form above. Abdominal tuck evident. waist and tuck should be viewable in most breeds from across the room, yes, easily.

IDEAL
Ribs palpable without excess fat covering. without "excess" fat covering. I disagree. there shouldn't be a fat pad over the rib cage. Again, there are some exceptions, but not many Waist observed behind ribs when viewed from above. Abdomen tucked when viewed from the side.

------------------

I know many people who insist that their vets say their dogs are ideal weight. I don't think they are lieing, I think the vet profession in general keeps dogs fat. Look at the dogs in a show ring and talk to "experts" they will say those dogs are at healthy weight.
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Postby TheRedQueen » January 8th, 2011, 7:04 pm

Yup, I gotta agree...I've never liked that chart. ;) *Maybe* for a pet dog...but not for an athlete...they're different...which is why I :heartbeat: my vets.

I can see ribs clearly on Score...and Figgy despite his length, has ribs visible usually. The aussies have too much fluff to see ribs, but you can feel them easily. Though I am fattening Rip and Xander up as they get older...I don't want them so thin anymore. :| You can see Vesta's ribs when she's breathing heavily...her fur covering is rather thin for a golden still.

But I personally like to see riblets. 8)
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Postby amazincc » January 8th, 2011, 7:13 pm

Crap... Baby Chicken has some serious poundage to lose then. :oops: :(

He is very active, and I already feed him way less than the recommended amount on the bag... I don't get it. :? :|
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Postby furever_pit » January 8th, 2011, 7:42 pm

Bringing up a pet's weight with a client can be tricky. Some people take it super personally - in my experience these people tend to be overweight themselves but whatever. Some people take it really easily and it's like a light bulb turned on. Some people will request to have us help their dog lose weight and then come in complaining that their (still overweight) dog is now a "bag of bones". So I think that sometimes our vets try to appease us by telling us the dog looks fine or whatever just so they don't have to deal with potential negative consequences.

That said, I would be a very happy camper if one day I could magically feel all my patients' ribs. lol
So while that chart is not ideal in my opinion, it is better than what a lot of people consider to be the proper condition for a dog to be in.

For my dogs, the chart is not what I would consider ideal. I too like to see ribs. I want to see more rib in bulldogs than I do in herders because of the fluff variable.
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Postby madremissy » January 8th, 2011, 7:45 pm

I am just aiming for a waist, a rib and a tuck. :)

Christine, Just my opinion but I think Faust looks good. He gets so much exercise.

Can we really go by that on all dogs. Serious question :) I am asking because some of us with BYB dogs. Are some built to be thin like that or not. Sense we don't truly know what kind of dog they have in their family tree? Does that make sense ? Maybe I am not saying it the right way.

Everyone has their preference and mine is not to have a dog that thin but to each is own and I respect those that do. I just want Izzy at a comfortable weight that would not put unnessecary stress on her joints.
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Postby amazincc » January 8th, 2011, 8:13 pm

Good question, Missy. :)

I, too, don't want my dogs to be "thin", per say... but I do want them to be healthy.

Our vet is very down-to-earth, and she's definitely not the kind to appease anyone or sugarcoat things... that's why I like her so much.
Fausts parents were ginormous, but severely neglected and emaciated when I saw them... so it's hard for me to gauge what his ideal weight should be, and I'm always asking Dr. Moore about his size/weight. She thinks he's at a healthy weight, but I can feel some fluff over his rib cage.
Sepp didn't develop real good muscle tone until he was about two years old and more mature... and he is definitely a very active dog. He hasn't lost or gained weight since he went through chemo - *knocks on wood* - and I definitely don't want him to get too thin.
His weight is much easier to maintain... maybe because he's on RAW?
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Postby mnp13 » January 8th, 2011, 8:21 pm

Can we go by what? What I said or what was originally posted?

I think for most dogs of most breeds, ignoring hair, you should be able to see the last rib or two. Yes, see. Even barrel bodied breeds. I don't consider spine at all because some dogs have prominant spines even when they are FAT. Connor is one of those dogs.

I don't think that seeing a rib is "thin," I think it's healthy weight. Remember, when a person is five pounds over weight, that's not all that big a deal - 150 pound person weighing 155, is only 3% over weight. A 50 pound dog that weighs 55 pounds is 10% over weight... and that is a big deal.

So while that chart is not ideal in my opinion, it is better than what a lot of people consider to be the proper condition for a dog to be in.

But that's the catch-22, what people view to be "proper weight" is what they see in the vet's office.

And quite frankly, look at the source of the weight chart - PURINA... who thinks corn should be the first ingredient in healthy dog food.
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Postby mnp13 » January 8th, 2011, 8:26 pm

amazincc wrote:His weight is much easier to maintain... maybe because he's on RAW?


See, on this I disagree. :) It's very easy with ground food, but when you feed whole food it's a total pain in the ass. That's the only thing I miss about kibble. When the dog gets fat, you just feed a little less. We feed chicken quarters, entire deer legs and duck frames. It's a total pain in the ass to chop a little off all of them.

I love Riggs' grinder for exactly that reason, but we're in venison season, so we're not using it right now.
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Postby madremissy » January 8th, 2011, 8:31 pm

mnp13 wrote:Can we go by what? What I said or what was originally posted?


By either I guess. Maybe my question is.... Is what is the ideal look on one, the ideal look on another.

I am aiming for a rib but the belly has to come off first. :wink:
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Postby mnp13 » January 8th, 2011, 8:34 pm

madremissy wrote:I am aiming for a rib but the belly has to come off first. :wink:


Trust me, I'm with you.

Oh wait, were we talking about me or the dog? lmao
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Postby madremissy » January 8th, 2011, 8:40 pm

mnp13 wrote:
madremissy wrote:I am aiming for a rib but the belly has to come off first. :wink:


Trust me, I'm with you.

Oh wait, were we talking about me or the dog? lmao


:) Well we could be talking about Kinzyl and myself. I have started at the gym and have been going for a couple of days now. I am so freaking sore. Today while walking Kinzyl I told her she couldn't stop to sniff because she had to keep her cardio up. 8)
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Postby amazincc » January 8th, 2011, 8:47 pm

mnp13 wrote:See, on this I disagree. :) It's very easy with ground food, but when you feed whole food it's a total pain in the ass.


Well, this is true. It's MUCH easier to measure ground food accurately. I miss feeding whole foods to Sepp, but for him the "RAW slushies" are necessary... and I LOVE my grinder, too. :D
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Postby furever_pit » January 8th, 2011, 9:07 pm

Texas A&M used to have a body score chart that I thought was better than this Purina one. The page is still there but the chart is gone tho. boooo.
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Postby TheRedQueen » January 8th, 2011, 9:18 pm

madremissy wrote:Can we really go by that on all dogs. Serious question :) I am asking because some of us with BYB dogs. Are some built to be thin like that or not. Sense we don't truly know what kind of dog they have in their family tree? Does that make sense ? Maybe I am not saying it the right way.


some of us have mixes that we can't compare to breed standard...;) So you have to go by what looks good for the dog...and that is usually developed by really looking at dogs, and feeling dogs, etc.

I'm training my young kids (the two that hang out with me for flyball) to read a dog's weight correctly. Braden (Score's buddy) really gets it now...he's gotten their family dog (a lab) to a good weight by nagging the family to feed less. Braden even told me the other day, "Score needs to gain some weight, he's a bit thin...maybe another pound." And you know what...he was right...(and I'd already upped Score's food a few days before). This kid is 9 years old and gets it...but he didn't at first. Emma is 12 (almost 13) and doesn't have the eye for it yet...we still have conversations about her dog (a lab also) being OBESE...not just fat, but seriously unhealthy gross coffee-table shaped fat. She teases me that my dogs are too skinny...and told me yesterday..."I asked my vet if a dog's ribs were visible if that was good...and the vet said no, that dog would be underweight." She's a work in progress, that girl... :wink:
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