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Hello,

I'm concerned that my basset is too thin, and problems I have with feeding him. He is 1 1/2 years old, and seems very happy, has a shiny coat, and is very energetic. A year ago, he was 48 pounds, and last fall he was 44 pounds. Both times he was weighed at the vet, and I contributed his weight loss to it being summer and going to the dog park. However, over the winter he has lost weight, and I am guesstimating him to be about 40 pounds. We have a vet appointment for him in two weeks.

It is often a struggle to get him to eat decently. I think we have done everything wrong that we possibly could have. When we first got him, I was warned often about not overfeeding him and not giving a basset too many treats. His main treat had been Pup Corn, (which is basically thick air, lol), as it was a low fat treat. We thought he would quit eating because he was tired of his food. So we would often switch kinds. I have since learned that this leads to a fussy eater. Because he does not eat a lot, I would just leave dry food in his bowl all the time. I just recently learned that that's not a good because it can also lead to a fussy eater.

So now it does appear that I have a picky eater. In January, he began to eat maybe only every other day. That was when he lost the last few pounds. We were then trying to mix a small amount of wet food with his dry food, because he will wolf down the wet stuff. We had boarded him for a weekend in February, and the boarder told us that wasn't a good idea, because it makes the dry food run through him faster. She gave us some samples of Nu Vet vitamins. We also that weekend got our new little mini-dachsund girl Sophie, who is now 12 weeks old.

We switched Copper's diet to wet food in the morning, dry food at suppertime, and we now do a trick-training session every night with a more substantial treat. His eating had definitely improved, and he had looked like he maybe had gained a pound or two. Then Sophie got a bout of diarrhea, and so we kept them apart for a couple days. Copper quit eating, except for the wet food. So we thought maybe his eating improvement was attributed to Sophie, whom he adores. Once they were together again, he started eating better, but not quite as well as before. We then ran out of the vitamin samples, and found something similar to order, but he went a few days without. Last weekend, he was not eating well at all again, and has lost the couple of pounds he did gain back.

He is now been on vitamins again for most of this week. His eating of his dry food seems to be starting to pick up again, but I'm still quite concerned. Even though we are seeing the vet soon, I thought I would try to get some opinions from the "real experts".

Is there any way to fix our mistakes? Is there anything we are doing wrong with his new feeding schedule? Any advice would be greatly appreciated by my whole family. We just adore Copper.

I'm hoping this picture works. It's of Copper and his little sister, Sophie, taken about a month ago. You can't really see from this picture how thin he really is. I might try later to get a better one if you think it would help.

Thanks, Bev

 

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I'd wait and see what the vet says. If he's otherwise healthy, I wouldn't fuss too much. It's not uncommon for young males to be pretty skinny.
 

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My boy Lightning was as thin as Copper when he was that age, and he was a very picky eater. Then I got Stomps, and suddenly Lightning's attitude about food changed 100%. Suddenly he realized that if he didn't eat his food, Stomps would (which couldn't be any further from the truth--Stomps is the world's pickiest eater!). Now Lightning wolfs down his food, and he's on a diet, which I never imagined would happen. So I think you probably have your "cure" already--his little sister. It may take a while for Copper to see her as competition for food, but I would guess things will get better as she gets bigger.
 

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Ernest now free feeds. He's one year old and very slender. He just isn't as interested in his food as he was before. He's very active and because we live in a one dog house, if he doesn't eat, he can have it later.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thank you all. You have made me feel much better. Awhile back we had met a female basset that is one month older than Copper, and I bet she had 20 lbs on him. I think that started my worrying! So I'm really glad to hear males his age can be small. I had always heard the males are larger.


Lightning & Stomps, thank you very much! We keep Copper and Sophie separated at mealtime, but a couple nights ago, we got the idea from you to get them closer together to see each other eating. So now, Copper is on the one side of the baby gate, and Sophie is next to him on the other side...and I tell you what, I have not seen Copper eat like that in months! So thank you so much for that idea!
 

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I have a female about his age and she is about that weight. I also have a Copper but he is a big boy,the last time we were at the vet he was around 65 lbs.
 

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My boy is thin too. When we got in in November we could see his ribs (he was a stray), now we can no longer see his ribs, but he is still thin. I think some dogs are just like that.

~Heather
 

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My boy is thin too. When we got in in November we could see his ribs (he was a stray), now we can no longer see his ribs, but he is still thin. I think some dogs are just like that.

~Heather
 
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