Greyhounds are the fastest dogs in the world, and as such have slender, long-legged physiques. If you adopted a retiring racing greyhound it may be at racing weight, which is about 2.27 to 3.18 Kilogram heavier than pet weight, according to Greyhound Adoption California. A greyhound that was ill, injured or neglected may need extra help to gain weight, as well. Work with your veterinarian to devise a healthy diet, rather than trying to put weight on your greyhound by feeding a lot of treats, snacks and table scraps.
Take your greyhound to the veterinarian for a thorough examination, including blood work and dental exam. There are a number of illnesses that can cause weight loss, or restrict weight gain. Additionally, dental or gum problems can cause your dog to have trouble eating, especially dry food. Ask the veterinarian to recommend a quality dry dog food, if there is no medical problem found.
Feed your dog a high-quality dry dog food from a pet store, as recommended by the veterinarian. Divide the daily ration into two or three meals to encourage eating more and to lessen the chance of bloat. Switch the dog to a new food gradually, by increasing the amount of the new food and decreasing the amount of its old food weekly until the new food is all that's being fed.
Measure the amount of food you give your greyhound at each meal, and keep a written record of how much is eaten. If you have switched to a better dry food, start by feeding an amount in the middle of the range recommended on the bag for your dog's weight. Increase as needed, depending on the dog's appetite and whether the dog begins to gain weight. Water should be clean, fresh and always available.
Keep a written record of the dog's stool consistency if diarrhoea seems to occur frequently. The written records will be helpful for the veterinarian to see if the dog doesn't gain weight and must return another examination.
Write down the amount and type of exercise and work that your greyhound does each day. This information should go in the same record as the amount of food and frequency of diarrhoea, and taken to the vet when your dog visits. It's possible you are working or exercising your dog too much without adjusting the food properly.
Take the dog and records to a veterinary allergy specialist if it still is not gaining weight. There may be a food allergy that is causing the problem, although it is less likely than other illnesses. Ask your veterinarian if another specialist, such as an endocrinologist or gastroenterologist would be helpful.
A dog should be heavy enough that you cannot see the ribs, but slender enough that you can easily feel the ribs without having to push hard.
Tips and warnings
- A dog should be heavy enough that you cannot see the ribs, but slender enough that you can easily feel the ribs without having to push hard.