Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: North Carolina
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Question about Leo's growth and eating?
Leo only eats when he's hungry and only seemingly enough to satisfy the hunger and no more. This is fine but its left me trying to work out the correct amount to feed and a "best" weight for him at this time. He is 7 months old, 9 7/8 inches tall at the withers and seems to have the best feel to his body at about 10.2-10.5 lbs. If he gets up to 11 lbs, he seems a bit pudgy on the ribs and his waist thickens while at the lower weight the flesh to rib feels right and the waist looks better. Part of my issue is that I've not had such a small dog before. Part is that he's 7 months old and I don't know if he's done growing. He hasn't increased in height in over a month and his weight has bounced about between 10-12 lbs with 12 being too pudgy and 10 a tiny bit skinny and 10.2-10.5 being about right. According to the Ziwipeak calculator, I should be feeding him 3.7 oz. daily but IF he eats that much in a day he won't eat much the next day and he has a slightly less firm poo. I take that to mean that 3.7 oz is too much of this very rich food in a single day. I have been doing 2.5 oz the past couple days. He will consume that amount in a given day and doesn't behave like he's still hungry.
So at 7 months is he finished growing given that he hasn't gotten taller in over a month? Is the best weight the one at which I can easily feel the ribs but the shoulder blades, hip bones and spine aren't bony and where he has a definite waist? Leo isn't like any dog I have ever lived with in his eating habits. All other dogs would always eat all that was offered, look around for more and would continue to eat to the point of sickness if permitted. Leo will eat if he's hungry but will "bury" food he doesn't yet want to eat until a time when he gets hungry ( except that I pick up the food and offer it later). If he overeats one day he will not eat much at all for a day or two. For those of you that feed Ziwipeak and have a similar sized dog does the amount he's eating seem about right? Have your dogs stopped growing at 7 months? It seems young but again he is the smallest dog I have had and I'm not really sure what's typical. Since I bath him twice each week I get to see him all wet often which gives me the opportunity to keep an eye on his body shape and condition. I also weigh him regularly since I'm still trying to figure out what a good weight for him is and how much to feed him to maintain that weight. Thoughts?