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I have a 3 year old Golden, Molly, who had knee surgery at the young age of 11 months. She did not have a good outcome and now her knee gets stiff and inflamed, I think it's probably painful, after she is active. She has gained 15 pounds in the last 9 months and I can't seem to get any weight to drop off. I walk her a couple of miles at a time, about 3-4 days a week. That is about all her leg can handle without causing her to limp. I've cut her food back by half and have been adding canned (no salt) green beans to help her feel full. She needs to drop the weight to help her knee, but she can't drop the weight because she can't be active with the bad knee! I don't know what else to do to help her lose the weight. I am open to suggestions, I just want to help my Molly get better. Here is a photo of my chunky dog...
What a cute dog. Just like people, invest in better food, leaner and less by products.
I usually make my own for The dog. I boil turkey meat, get rid of all the fat, add elbow macaroni, and all kinds of vegetables.
Dumb dog sleeps all day but she doesn't get fat. Spoiled little shit. Anyway, that's my two cents.
I feed her Orijen, one of the best and highest rated foods on the market. I'm sure it's not nearly as good as feeding real food like you do, but it is the best I can do with my schedule. Orijen costs about $65 for a big bag and I would be willing to consider a less expensive alternative if the nutrition was equal. I also add fish oil to her food once a day because I was told it was good for her joints and Orijen is high in glucosamine and chondroiten so I don't supplement those.
Why is she gaining weight then? Is the fat content too high? I'm not criticizing, just trying to find a way to help.
She's cute. What does the vet say?
This post was edited by 303nole 18 months ago
"Don't mistake lack of talent for genius." Type O Negative
Thanks! Well, the vet said that she needs to exercise! I think a lot of the weight gain came from her getting fed by multiple members of the family each day, all of us thinking she hadn't been fed. For the last 6 weeks, I've been in control of her feeding and we eliminated snacks and treats. In 6 weeks she hasn't lost any weight! I watch her when she is fed so I know she isn't sneaking the other dogs food. Here is a snapshot of the label from her dog food.
This post was edited by Nole 87 18 months ago
You might look into some kind of physical therapy. I've even heard of some people getting good results with acupuncture for their dogs. Might help with the pain issues so she could exercise a bit more.
Maybe get a different vet to check her out, get a different opinion.
I just googled PT for dogs because I had never heard of that before. There are places that have underwater treadmills just for dogs which would be perfect for Molly I think. Thanks for the idea!
Hope it helps her and she starts feeling a bit better :)
My family had 2 goldens when I was growing up. I love both of them, great dogs......that my wife won't let me get.
Another piece of advice is to be patient...some dogs take forever to lose/gain weight. It took my rescue like 6-8 months to start gaining, and my girlfriends 20 yr old shih tzu fluctuates constantly.
Exercise and a lower fat content diet. Take the food bowl away - up off the floor when she's had a good go at it. Don't put it down so she can have access to it any time she wants. She'll whine at first, but stick to your guns, and you will see results.
The exercise component is paramount. Golden Retrievers are identified as a Working Breed. They need and love to work. Google them as field trial participants, and try to get her to fetch or play catch. Take her with you when you walk or run outdoors. Goldens love to swim, so during many clement parts of the year, throw the tennis ball out into the lake/water and have her bring it back to you. Reward her with tidbits - pieces of Dog Biscuits or a piece of beef Jerky - whatever low-fat/high protein treat she will go for. Not EVERY time, but pretty often.
I bred, raised and trained Goldens for a good number of years as field trial contestants, even prepared a few for the extreme behavior regimen for Deaf &/Or Blind service. PM me if you want some further tips.
My brother has a golden and she is very overweight. The sin i've seen him enable is the lazy mans dog bowl (auto feeder), thus she lays while eating. I've seen labs have great success with controlled diets (moderated & scheduled meals). I'm about as big of dog lover as you'd know (1 fawn pug and 1 brindle pit) and I keep their diets moderated with success. Good luck!
Very good tips, I do appreciate them! I think the swimming is going to be key since she has a bad knee. I've regulated her feeding, 2X a day @ 1 cup each feeding. Since she can't exercise too much because of her knee, I have to really cut back her food but I feel horrible doing so to this extent. 1 cup of food per feeding for a 3 yr old isn't much. I throw the ball for her daily and walk her at least 2 miles daily as long as she doesn't start limping. I have pain meds for her when the knee gets bad but I would rather just avoid having to give her those by preventing the pain. If she goes to the dog park it aggravates the knee, if we walk too far or jog to much it gets aggravated.
She LOVES to be active, but it always results in her limping and me giving her pain meds. This is why I think the hydrotherapy will be the key to getting her to lose weight.
Nashnole - I will double check her food, perhaps we shouldn't be feeding her premium food and need to change brands.
Thank you all for your input. I love this dog as much as I love my kids, she is a part of this family and it is just killing me that she has can't be active without experiencing in pain.
The very best of luck my man. Your vet may be able to recommend a cold weather water corse for you to frequent. You obviously love your friend and care enough to actively work with her. For that you have my major respect.
Little story. My favorite Golden bitch threw me a litter of 9 pups. I sold 6 and kept the two best all around and the runt, a beautiful auburn colored female. She had bad confirmation, a chubby head, little stubby legs and a too short tail. Ginger. She was my constant companion and best good friend. Quite useless for field trial or dog show work, but the friendliest little lady ever. Absolutely loved kids, and would even let small tots ride on her back. She was a Galumpher, kinda had a funny hop when she ran, and when she was excited and/or pleased, would lay down with her forelegs extended straight out, hind end stuck up in the air and just do a funny little dance while grunting with pleasure. Little kids loved it. One day, I took her to a tracking field trial West of Tally so I could learn the disciplines attendant with that skill set. Ginger was enthralled by this, and after we got home, I took an old watch cap of mine and dragged it behind me for about 5-600 yards in a zig-zag pattern while she was hidden in her kennel, then I made a Jerry rigged tracking harness, took her to the point of origin, let her smell the hat, and gave her the command "Track", not thinking she would have a clue what to do, but she put her schnozzola down and proceeded to follow the course perfectly - to my total amazement. At first I thought she may be tracking my scent, but a pro told me to try her with another person and she would complete the course anyway. She did. Every time. I never entered her in formal competition, as I started traveling as a "Roadie" with Holiday on ice and didn't have the time to really train both of us enough. She could do it though, and that quite well. Golden's are extremely smart. Try different things with yer lady. She may surprise you.
This post has been edited 2 times, most recently by Nashnole 18 months ago
My lab had hip surgery at a young age too. The vet then recommended swimming as the best form of exercise. Unfortunately, I had the only lab on earth that was afraid of swimming. She loved water but never wanted to go out where she couldn't stand. She was a sweetie though
Orijen is good food. Is it grain free? I don't remember. We use EVO. Of course, my dog is only 9 pounds and he and the 2 cats both eat the cat food, so what do I know?
I believe that Orijen is grain free. We just went to the vet for a weight check and over the course of the last 6 weeks she has lost a grand total of 1/2 pound. *smh*
I'm late on this but has her thyroid been checked? Is she shedding more than normal? It seems like she should be losing if that's all she eats.
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