My dog just had puppies now she is real thin, what should I give her?

My dog just had puppies three days ago. She looked fine the next day and now she is real thin, what should I give her? She's eating and drinking normally, she's just very thin now. I'm afraid she has eclampsia but the only symptom I've noticed is wining which I figured is for her pups. I've been feeding her puppy food because I've read it helps produce milk and nutrients for the puppies.

  • Vetinfo

    By: Julie Ann El Segundo, CA

    Replied on 04/19/2011

    It is normal for a dog within a day or two of having puppies to look a little thin in the abdomen.  The puppies are out and the breasts are full of milk.  The big question is does she feel thin over her ribs?  She should not.  If anything you like just a little extra weight knowing the demands of milk production in the coming weeks. 

    If your dog is actually thin following the birth of her puppies it is critical that she receive superior nutrition now so she can produce adequate milk for her puppies both today and in 3-4 weeks when the demand will be at its highest.  This is especially true if the dog has a large litter.  That may be 5 puppies for a Pomeranian or 12 puppies for a Doberman.

    It is recommended that the mother dog be fed a quality brand of puppy food for the duration of her nursing.  If she is underweight it is especially important to spend the extra money for a premium brand such as Eukanuba, Science Diet, Nutro, Taste of The Wild, etc.  You want the best and greatest nutrition in every morsel the mom dog eats.  You won't find these brands at the grocery store.  You will need to go to a pet store. 

    Feed the food in at least 3 meals per day and as much as the mom is willing to eat.  Wet the food to encourage water consumption and to make eating larger portions easier.  She should have a very good appetite due to the demands of nursing.  If she does not she needs to be checked by your veterinarian.  She can also be fed free choice if her food is away from other pets in the household.  Keep the food and water just outside of the bed with the puppies.  She may be reluctant to leave her puppies to travel across the house to her normal eating location.

    You may not be able to get the mom dog to gain a significant amount of weight until the puppies start eating solid food.  The size of her litter will be a big determining factor.  If the litter is smaller in number (keeping in mind the average for her breed) it will be easier for her to catch up to her normal weight.  If she remain on the thin side despite quality food and a good appetite plan to start offering the puppies solid food at 3 weeks.  You may offer it only 2-3 times daily and it will be messy to start but it will lighten the load on mom.  Soak dry puppy food in warm Esbilac or First Born (milk replacer for dogs) until it is completely soft or grind dry puppy food in the blender and then add puppy milk replacer to make a soupy mixture.  You will be surprised how quickly the puppies will start eating it.  The mother dog is usually very willing to clean up her messy puppies and eat any remaining puppy food.  She has earned it!

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  • Diet for dog with UTI and Pyelonephritis

    I have an English Bulldog who was just diagnosed with a Urinary Tract Infection. We were also told she may have Pyelonephritis, but not a serious case of it yet. The doctor did a lot a X-rays and blood work. She does have a bad infection that showed up in the X-rays. She was put on Antibiotics and Pain Medication. We have been giving her the medicine like we are supposed to but she is not eating at all. The Vet prescribed "Prescription Diet" Dog food but she will not eat it. What do we do?

  • Are dogs toxic Mesquite Pods?

    In the summer my dog loves to eat the Mesquite tree seed pods. She has never gotten sick but someone said they are toxic.

  • My dog ate a small amount of aloe vera gel?

    He had a rash and a website said to put aloe on his rash. It worked and the rash is better but now he will not eat or drink. He did throw up this morning. I am assuming that he licked some of the aloe gel off of himself. What should I do?

  • My dog wont eat and her stomach is growling. Why?

    My dog isn't eating and her stomach is growling, what can I do for her? This has happened before. She also tends to belch at times. Have her on a sensitive dog food from Iams. Seems to have been helping, but now she's feeling like this this morning.

  • Fish oil for dogs who are pregnant?

    Can I still feed my dog fish oil even if she is pregnant? She's a boxer.

  • Is milk for dogs okay in their dry food?

    We put a little milk in our dog's dry food. We replaced the canned moist food with the milk. They really seem to like it. Is this okay to do? By the way they are rotties, 6 yrs. old. This has helped with the amount of gas they pass, it is almost nonexistent now. Please let me if they are any side effects, and if I can still do this. Thank You.

  • Is it bad if my dog swallows raw hide?

    My dog swallowed a large piece of raw hide and is sick. Took him to the doctor, got xray and showed nothing was there. Doctor gave me antibiotic and stool softener, but my dog has been throwing up for two days. Taking back to doctor today.

  • Why does my dog eat grass?

    My 4 year old lab/ boxer mix is always chewing on grass when we go for walks, am I missing something in his diet?

  • Are Kosher dill pickles toxic to dogs?

    My 2 year old sheltie has developed a taste for dill pickles. I cut the pickles in 4 strips length wise and I don't give her much, just maybe a couple 1/2" pieces. Will this hurt her? She really likes them.

  • Dry vs. canned food for canine kidney disease

    I have a 15 year old Schipperke, diagnosed with kidney disease last year. I have been feeding him Hills kd canned dog food, but have been slowing switching him to dry, due to ease of feeding while he is in a kennel or staying with friends. He has been drinking more water. I realize canned has more water, but am I harming him by feeding the dry kd and having him drink more? Thank you.

  • Dog diet for UTIs

    Hello, my cat has had 3 episodes of UTI's with Struvite crystals in the past year. Last November he got a PU surgury and has recovered well. He is not a fan of prescription wet food and eats science diet C/D Dry.He currently has a UTI and I was wondering if there is any other non prescription wet food that would be acceptable to feed him? I feel that he does not get enough water and he may be a bit dehyrated, so it's probably best if I keep him on the prescription dry and find him a wet food too.

  • Is dog food made with turkey good for dogs?

    A lot of people have told me that turkey is not good for dogs but I see a lot of dog foods that are made with turkey. Are they ok for a dog to eat?

  • Does switching dog food lead to higher water consumption?

    My mini-chihuahua is drinking much more this normal after changing dog food to duck from chicken?

  • Dog diet for high pH level

    High pH level in urine. I have a 3month old female Lab. Her pH level in her urine is high, 7.5-8.5 I have changed her food 3 times, from nutro , to innova to nutro lamb and rice, the test results came back struvite crystals, but NO I'm confused on what to do. My vet keeps telling me to keep changing foods to it levels out. There is nothing they can do about it. I give her crancaps also. Should I switch to an all natural food?

  • The difference between hill's prescription diet i/d and pedigree + healthy digestion

    I was wondering what is the difference between hill's prescription diet i/d and pedigree + healthy digestion besides the veterinary prescription and price.

  • Dog allergies to eggs?

    If my dog is allergic to chicken, will she most likely be allergic to chicken eggs also?

  • Does Balance It dog supplements have a safe record for quality?

    Does Balance It dog supplements have a safe record for quality? control since many of their ingredients are imported {China}. I'm concerned about the ingredients since this company imports many ingredients from foreign countries. It was recommended as a supplement to a homemade diet.Thank you

  • Can dogs eat vegetables or fruits?

    If so, which ones can they eat and which ones can they not?

  • What is the best diet for dog kidney disease?

    My great pyrenees is almost 9 yo and has had a slightly elevated bun and creatinine for a couple years but no other symptoms of kidney disease. A recent test has shown they are elevated more so they are going to run specific gravity in a couple weeks. What diet is best for him to be on to control any further strain on the kidneys? Something homemade or one that can be purchased. What is the brand name and where can I purchase it? Should anything else be done for him? Specialist? Thank you, Heidi

  • What form of garlic for dogs can be used for immune building?

    My dog is getting over kennel cough. The vet gave antibiotics, the that course is complete. He is much better, but I want to build up his immune. Can I use a little garlic oil, or garlic and parsley perls? I didn't want to use raw garlic.

  • Bad food for dogs?

    Can broccoli or cauliflower make dogs ill?

  • An antioxidant for dogs with some signs of canine dementia and diminshed eyesight

    I am looking for an anti-oxidant supplement for my 14 year old lab/mix. He also takes 25 mg Deramaxx every other day for arthritis. Can you recommend any specific product that would be safe for him to take while he is also taking the Deramaxx?

  • Are tomatoes harmful to dogs?

    I gave tomato sauce to my dogs. Is that harmful to them?

  • Home recipes for canine chronic hepatitis?

    Our 6 yr old Collie male has been diagnosed with chronic hepatitis following repeated bouts of gastric distress, poor appetite and a weight loss from 56 to 47 lbs in the one year he's been with us. After fruitless treatment at a reg. vet, we self-referred to a specialist in gastroenterology who did bloodwork, ultrasound and a liver biopsy. He's on meds and a high carb/low-fat diet of chicken and pasta/rice. As we're tapering off the Pred, he's becoming picky. Any suggestions for other foods?

  • Olive oil versus fish oil for dogs?

    Is it safe to give my adult and puppy westies a teaspoon of olive oil per day? Or is fish oil better? Is one teaspoon too large for the puppy (approx 5.5 pounds and 12 weeks old)?

  • Before Grain Dog Food

    Is this brand a healthy, balanced diet for dogs? The same food can be used for puppies and adult dogs - would you give it to a puppy?

  • Encouraging dog appetite?

    My dog was born with diabetes, started having occasional seizures about 4 yrs. ago, was put on phenobarbital for them. Went 2 yrs seizure free until his past April. My dog will not eat! Never has been food driven and has no appetite. 99% of the time I have to open his mouth and put the food in, hold it shut til he swallows it. What can I do to stimulate his appetite so he eats instead of having his insulin and phenobarbital in him on an empty stomach? How should everything be correctly done?

  • Small llapso mixed who is a very heavy dog

    He still gets 2 meals a day. Wet food in the morning and a handful of dry food at night. He is solid as a rock but I am concerned because he gets out of breath easy. The vet said that he is healthy. I don't know how much to feed him in the morning. He does get exercise.

  • What is the best recipe for a homemade diet for dog kidney failure?

    I need a recipe for a homemade diet for a 4 year old shih tzu with kidney disease/failure. Please advise.

  • Are there benefits of milk for dogs?

    My dog loves milk, is it ok for him?

  • What is bad and safe good dog food?

    Our full breed chocolate lab is considered obese and has been vomiting from time to time (a few times a week). What dog food would be recommended from a store? She is about 4 to 5 years old. Thank you for your time and consideration.

  • Is aloe vera bad or poisonous for dogs?

    My puppy may have chewed on an aloe vera plant. He's been bobbing around and has been sleeping alot.

  • Will my dog get sick after he ate a small piece of onion?

    He's a miniature austrailian shepard. He weighs about 11 pounds. He only ate about 1 tsp. of onion. Will he be okay?

  • Can dogs eat asparagus, or is asparagus toxic for dogs?

    Is it safe to give your dog asparagus. If so, how much can they have per pound?

  • Are raisins and grapes bad for dogs?

    Is it sake to feed your dog a grape or raisin? Is it okay if it is just one?

  • Is raw meat for dogs okay?

    I want to give my dog a raw steak for dinner is this ok?

  • Unexplained dog weight loss and dragging his butt on the ground. What's going on?

    My dog, a rat terrier, is 9 yrs old, and has been in great health, but we have noticed that he has started dragging his butt on the ground daily when he is running in the yard. He has good bowel movements, no noticable worms in them. The biggest concern is the weight loss, though. He has no noticable fat left on his body, just muscle and skin. But he eats a lot, the same as he always has.

  • Dogs and grapes. Can dogs eat them?

    Are grapes harmful to dogs? I just had someone tell me they would cause death if as few as a small handful were eaten. They cause renal failure. I have always given my dogs grapes as treats and have never had a problem but I want to make sure.

  • Why is my dog vomiting and not hungry?

    My dog has been throwing up. First it was foam, now it's brown. She usually throws up (sometimes twice) and then goes right back to normal jumping around, but now she's really quiet and doesn't even want table food, which she loves.

  • Are oranges safe for dogs?

    My miniature dachshund loves oranges. I usually eat one a day and she just goes crazy for some. I only give her about three segments at most. I just wanted to be sure that I was not giving her something that is bad for her.

  • Low protein dog food for liver failure?

    My dog almost died of liver failure a week ago. My vet recommended a low protein dog food for her but it is very expensive. Is there a comparable low protein dog food beside Medi-Cal?

  • Food for IBD dogs?

    My dog has been confirmed to have IBD, now he doesn't like what is on the market to feed him. What do I feed him if I make it at home?

  • What to feed a dog with pancreatitis?

    What kind of dog food do I need to feed my dog who has had an attack or pancreatitis? He is a 3yr old Westie.

  • Is flaxseed good for a constipated dog?

    Our beagle strains going to the bathroom. Would flax seed be beneficial?

  • Puppy diet- how much protein should be in it?

    I am feeding my border collie puppy Origen dog food which is 40% protein. Some people say that is too much protein. Is this true?

  • See all questions in Diet and Nutrition

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Please do use our site to become better informed about the medical problems your pet may have. We will do our best to ensure that information presented is accurate and up-to-date. The most current information will be at the top of each page. Remember that veterinarians often disagree about the best treatments for pets. There are often several perfectly acceptable ways to treat the same condition. Just ask a lot of questions!

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