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This is Nelson! He'll be one year old around Christmastime. My wife and I got him late summer. He was rescued by our local boxer rescue. They think that he was left in a crate too small for him and not fed. He is very skinny. Since we've had him, he has been to the vet multiple times (including to be neutered) and many tests have been done and is completely health right now (and has been for a few months) with the exception of his weight. He is around 39 pounds.

He has been slowly (very slowly) gaining weight since we have had him. He has been eating around 4 cups of food a day, but occasionally he decides he does not want to eat any dry food. We try to entice him by adding plain cooked chicken breast, wet food, or coconut oil, but he usually tries to eat just that and avoids his dry food. We've even had stints where we tried food processing his dry food with water.

What are some ideas that we can try for getting him to eat? He enjoys pretty much any human food but we avoid giving him any table scraps. I am happy to cook for him (we generally eat whole30 style) instead of dry food if that would help him gain weight, but I'm not quite sure what would be best? I'm leaning towards the chicken, lean ground beef, sweet potatoes, etc. What would you guys recommend?

Side note: Since Day 1 we've had him, he is completely potty trained, very well behaved, not skittish at all, loves all dogs, loves all people, will still play around and growl/bark but he listens and obeys us very well. He is the perfect dog! We just need to fatten him up!




 

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Hi, he is beautiful! I'm not sure about what to cook but I do remember other members over the years mentioning satin balls as a treat to add weight. If you do a search on the forum for satin balls you should be able to find some information. I'm sure someone will come along to offer advice on cooking.
 

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So it's been about a year since this post and I've seen no replies but the Satin Balls. We've tried all sorts of different food and supplements for Nelson but he is still low 40's and you can still see his ribs and spine. Vet continues to say he is healthy and he has normal bowel movements and behavior. Should I give the satin balls a try? Or should I just accept that he's going to stay skinny?
 

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So it's been about a year since this post and I've seen no replies but the Satin Balls. We've tried all sorts of different food and supplements for Nelson but he is still low 40's and you can still see his ribs and spine. Vet continues to say he is healthy and he has normal bowel movements and behavior. Should I give the satin balls a try? Or should I just accept that he's going to stay skinny?
Congrats on your baby- I know the post is not new...but I think rescuing is wonderful. I wish this still showed his photo.

Our issue has been the opposite, our older boys have had to lose weight- but that was mostly due to my husband giving them more treats than he realized (he's home w/ them during the day). They are not as active as they used to be either...

We put canned veggies on their dry food. You can get no salt versions in the grocery store w/ other canned veggies. They love this and eat the dry food too. Peas & carrots are kind of hard to pick out if you mix it.

Our boys love sweet potatoes too. They are high in fiber so there is probably a limit to what they should have. They love cantaloupe, watermelon, strawberries, blackberries... the fruit we usually feed from our hands. Have you tried adding some things like this throughout the day (or the periods you are home) to see if it helps?

As a treat at times we have given them the little dog food things, like the Cesar soft food. It's probably not the healthiest thing for them, but we don't do it often. You could probably mix this around his food, or just let him gobble it up.

If I think of anything else that may help I'll add it. I wish you luck.
 

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He is probably just on the smaller side and now that he is two you ay start to see him put on a little more weight. I use instinct dehydrated chicken or beef or Stella & Chewers toppers as treats. Our boxer does not need any extra weight he has been putting on a few in my opinion but we shall see when he gets a weigh in. For my standard poodle I add a tablespoon of propane no grain canned to each of his meals. With the boxer I am more careful with what I add as I don't want his stool getting loose, which it will if he gets too much .
 

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Welcome!! I know how worried you are about weight gain. We have litter mates, Chase and Mysti. They are like night and day. Chase filled out early and is a typical muscular boxer boy. Mysti is petite for a boxer and I used to drive myself crazy just trying to keep 40 lbs on her. She was so thin I could count every rib and people used to comment that there must be something wrong. She was healthy after some problems early on with urinary infections. The vet kept an eye on her for a smoldering pylonephritis (chronic kidney issue) and when that didn't develop told us to just keep feeding like we were. We feed grain free although in light of recent research on that we have started adding some grains. Anyway she is apparently just a late bloomer because now at 5 years old she is a comfy 53 lbs and now only her last 2 ribs are visible - normal and desirable in a boxer as well as a little "tuck" by their hind quarters. Boxers are designed to be lean and muscular so I'd say as long as your boy is active, happy and the vet has done any necessary blood work to rule out metabolic causes like thyroid or diabetes just try not to worry too much and see how he fills in as he gets older. Do you have any pics you could share so we could get an idea of his build??
 

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When I got my first baby Diesel at 4, he was severely under weight. I gave him satin balls and he gained a nice 17 pounds in a few weeks time. Keeping weight on him was difficult. I feed on demand, even with my new boxer and was told that they should be on puppy food longer than most dogs as they mature closer to four. I often made them food, steak, rice, pumpkin purée, yogurt, cottage cheese, sweet potatoes, etc. Boxers are bundles of muscle and any amount of exercise and mine go down in weight almost immediately. My vet says they run lean and they are healthy that way. I hope that helps in some way.
 
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