Questionable trip to the vet? Or do I have a questionable outlook at my dog's weight?

Last night I brought my 67lb mix breed 3 year old to the vet (Banfield Pet Hospital). The vet told me she was overweight, in my head I know she could stand to lose 5lbs (so could I), but he pointed to her growth chart (she has been going to Banfield's since she was 8weeks) and said she should weigh 50lbs (she was 50lbs at 6 months old). I tried to explain that I just do not see how a 6month weight could be healthy for a 3 year old dog and he said I "didn't know what I was talking about." She has an obvious waist line and you can feel her ribs when petting her. She certainly does not look 18lbs overweight to anyone I know. My question is: at what point do you think that you should find a new vet? I'm very concerned that he may not know what he's talking about, and I'm also concerned that I just don't realize my dog is morbidly obese. She gets regular walks daily and she is given the recommended food dosage (hollistic, grain-free diet). Other Banfield vets have never mentioned her weight

Asked by Bailey on May 3rd 2012 in Health & Wellness
Report this question Get this question's RSS feed Send this question to a friend


  • Cast your vote for which answer you think is best!


Gray Dawn Treader

If you can feel the ribs, then she's definitely not obese.
I'm not sure what I'd do. I tend to let people walk all over me in situations like that, so I'm not much help...but it doesn't sound like finding a new vet would be a bad idea.

Gray Dawn Treader answered on 5/3/12. Helpful? Yes/Helpful: No 0 Report this answer


I agree. Some vets seem to have projectile anorexia- all dogs are fat, and no dog can ever be thin enough. On advice of the vet, my cousin's husband is compulsive about the amount of kibble they feed their dog and never letting him have a treat- and after touching him, I think he would look shockingly thin if he weren't so furry. I wonder about people who think that a lifetime of hunger is less harmful than being an active dog who's a few pounds overweight. For dogs, food is inseparable from security and love. Moreover, a service provider who speaks to you rudely does not deserve your repeat business.

Member 1104298 answered on 5/3/12. Helpful? Yes/Helpful: No 0 Report this answer

Bruno CGC

LOL, I've never heard of this "projectile anorexia" previously mentioned. I think many more vets are afraid to discuss weight loss for fear of angering (and losing) their clients. And since the vast majority of pet dogs are overweight nowadays, that's not such a surprise that she may not look "fat" to you.

Some other things to keep in mind:
1. The amount on the dog food bag is almost ALWAYS too much, for pet dogs that aren't super-active.
2. Growth charts are baloney for mutts, since different breeds grow at different rates.
3. You CAN still feel the ribs on a fat dog- you just have to dig a little, so just being able to feel them is not a good metric.
4. Grain-free dog foods tend to be very calorie dense and an appropriate amount may look too small, so it's easy to overfeed.

If you want a critique, come over to the Dogster Forums (esp. Health and Nutrition) with some recent pictures of your dog (side and top) and we'll give it you straight!

Bruno CGC answered on 5/3/12. Helpful? Yes/Helpful: No 1 Report this answer


I am not a fan of banfield. I have heard to many stories about them just selling for petsmart. I think I would check with another vet to see what they say

Ikan answered on 5/4/12. Helpful? Yes/Helpful: No 0 Report this answer


I'm a bit surprised. Most of the time the Vets are to afraid to tell people their pets are fat.

Would you post a current photo of your dog? Full body, side, top ( looking down from above her ). (Even with the camera adding 5 pounds... BOL ). I think it is easier to tell if she needs to lose a bit by seeing her myself.

My Sister is obese and is completely in the dark as to how obese her Lab is. She free feeds her!

At 18 months old she was a fit and healthy 55 pounds. She is a very small field Lab. When she reached age 5 she ballooned up to 72 pounds. My sisters Vet did ask her to take 5 pounds off her. So now she is on a cycle of losing in the summer and getting fatter each winter. She got a stress fracture on a paw last spring!

I cut my dogs food back every winter. Pepper doesn't get fat, but the boys pudge out if I'm not careful.

Cricket answered on 5/4/12. Helpful? Yes/Helpful: No 0 Report this answer