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Hi all,
I am a little worried about my 1 year old male. He has just gone one year, and is showing no signs of filling out, as he has been a lanky thin teenager for some time now. He has 2 meals a day to which i have added some tripe. See below info on his food and photos below. But he always seems starving!!!! Like when we are out walking for example, and he spots a piece of bread, he lunges for dear life at it! I have actually had a few people complain to me that i don't feed my dog!! He doesn't have worms, has been treated and checked. Any ideas? What do you think....is he fine...is it normal at his age to be so slim?

Ingredients: corn, fish meal, corn oil, yeast, beet pulp, calcium carbonate, dicalcium phosphate, Fructo-Oligo-Saccharides (FOS), Yucca Schidigera, coline chloride, vitamin B compound, preserved with natural extracts rich in tocopherols.

Typical analysis: 8% moisture, 24% protein, 11% fat, 2.7% fibre, 6% ash, 1.2% calcium, 0.8% phosphorus, 0.8% Omega3, 5.5% Omega6.

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Don't know were my last reply went but lets try again.
Humphry is 4 years old and weighs 32kg.
Looks very thin but is very healthy. Runs for britain, eats like a horse and is the greedest Irish we have ever had.
Like Pepper, he has a wonderful coat and fantastic looking eyes.....and a love of life(sounds like an Irish Setter to me)
The only change we made was to his food, we now use Burns and that was to get a lower protein % (16%).
Our vet says he is in great condition and loves to talk about the time of DAY, instead of over weight dogs.

ENJOY YOUR IRISH

He does look very thin to me, judging from those photos. Hip bones should not be sticking out like that on any Irish. The ribs should have a good covering of healthy body fat - and you should be able to feel the last 2-3 ribs beneath this fat - not prominently. His coat looks shiney, though.

I would change his diet. The general rule of a good food is that the first few ingredients should be meat of some sort. Things like corn, rice etc should appear further down the list - they are carbs, and are added as fillers. They should not form the main part of the food.

Having said that, I would be adding rice to his food at the moment, simply to put some weight on him. Here's what I fed to fatten up one of mine:

Breakfast
2 x raw, fresh chicken wings, or one turkey neck
1/4 cup cooked brown rice
1/4 cup Eagle Pack premium kibble

Lunch
1 cup Eagle Pack kibble with 1 raw, fresh chicken wing

Dinner
1 heaped cup Eagle Pack kibble
1 handful of raw mince - chicken/turkey/lamb/beef or 1 tin sardines
1 spoonful plain yoghurt
1/4 cup cooked brown rice
1 children's vitamin tablet
1 flax seed oil tablet

Tidbits were fed through the day - bananas, apple, bits of bread etc.

If that diet doesn't work, I'd be getting bloodwork done at the vets and checking for a metabolic disorder. I believe some lines of Irish can suffer from a disorder which basically prevents them from gaining weight. I can't remember what it's called. The dog would have other symptoms too, though.
He does look rather thin, but then 1 year old = that could be the reason.
How about his close family?
Have you got any contact with the breeder or his littermates?
Often being rather skinny at this age runs in familys.
Caroline, with nearly forty years of experience - trust me - he will put weight on in a few months time, as he starts to mature. He is going through the adolescent stage at the moment, and everything you feed will not make much difference. Just relax and wait! Suddenly you will see him start to fill out, and never look back. I have seen it in some Irish, of different breeding, over the years, and it is all just a case of time.
Keep up with good food, two or three times a day, and even if he puts on weight, he is capable of losing all the hard work in one very good run on the beach or in the park! Don't despair though, once he is ready, he will put it on, never to be lost again. Might even get a little chubby as he gets older!
I would agree that a better diet would be good. Something meat or fish first with corn way down or eliminated.
So many to pick from. And my last setter was very thin and ate twice what other dogs ate. It's just the dog. He is young and active, they fill out when their activity levels decrease with age. .
Your Pepper looks like my Irish Setter I lost a couple months ago. Hippy is the way I described her. I worried about her weight a lot and researched foods but the only thing that worked was time. She turned 3 and started looking great. I lost her recently to antifreeze poisoning.
Here is a picture of her.
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Caroline,

Pepper looks very skinny on your pics. If I where you I would feed him 3 meals a day. I always give 3 meals a day to the dogs I owned. It is also a good idea to feed a more natural diet. Barf is an option but there are very good dried foods available like this food that I am feeding: http://www.championpetfoods.com/acana/show-product.php?formulation=la
Caroline,
I do agree with the others when they tell you that time will make all the difference but if he is lungeing at every piece of food he sees the I think he is hungry. I feed puppies to appetite rather than to manufacturer's guidelines...if a puppy is still licking their bowl after all the food is gone then he is still hungry so up his amount of food, or go back to 4 meals a day.
Burns is a very good food & I also find Royal Canin Sensible great for putting on body.....chicken wings go down a treat also.
The other thing to consider is the amount of exercise Pepper gets....although adult setters needs lots of galloping, babies need much less.....if he is using up all his calories running he won't have enough to develop good sturdy bone & muscle, so as well as feeding good food, don't overdo the free running would be my advice. You can't 'grow' a dog twice so getting it right first time is vital. How much exercise does he get each day?
thanks to everyone for your advice...i am not worrying too juch since he is full of life, and extremely shiny, however i will think about changing his diet.
Absolutely agree with everyone who says time will make all the difference and about 3 years old is the magical age and one day you will probably have him on a diet.
Kind of agree with the age thing, but basically if he is thin and hungry....give him more food!
We feed thin ones 3 or 4 times a day. We feed lots of meat if they lack body (beef or lamb).
One bitch we had back for hols a while ago had over pound of Red mince/ tripe + handful of Arden Grange, 3x a day, she put on weight within a week!
Our Freddie been having grated dripping lately (bitches in season) and he loves it!
Hi,
I've been exactly trough the same concerns!
Pitanga was the first setter I ever had close contact with, and it did worry me her body condition. no worms no metabolic disorders, normal apetite and a normal life! I tried changing foods about 5 times until I gave up! She is now 2 years old, and I can tell you that over the past 3 months I have noticed that she has matured a lot and is now an adult dog. This was also the time she started to put on some weight. Her hips bones are now hidden and she looks a lot better, but as it has been said, it wasn't the food or the amount of meals that made her gain weith, time did!
She look exactly like your dog does ate the same age!

Teresa

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