Some dogs have trouble gaining weight due to health problems. For these dogs, only a veterinarian-approved diet for that dog should be considered. However, if your dog is healthy, there are some foods that can encourage weight gain. When you begin feeding these items to your dog, don’t add them to the dog’s diet all at once. Slowly introduce each ingredient. For example, add one new ingredient each week until the dog’s diet is complete.
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Food for Dogs to Gain Weight
1: Canned Food
Canned dog food, when coupled with dry kibble, can help a dog to gain weight. Canned food usually contains more meat and water than dry kibble, and it is easier to digest, which makes it optimal for weight gain.
2: Dry Kibble
Dogs who need to gain weight should be fed a premium dog food that contains real meat. Check the first five ingredients to see if it lists chicken, beef, venison, lamb or turkey without the words “meal” or “byproducts” after the meat name.
Peas, zucchini and green beans are ideal vegetables to serve to your dog. Onions, garlic, broccoli and cauliflower should be avoided, since these can negatively affect the dog’s health and are common allergens.
4: Natural Proteins
Chicken, eggs, rabbit, fish, beef and tripe are good sources of protein that are easily digested by dogs. If you opt to feed your dog chicken, debone it before mixing it with the dog food to avoid possible puncture wounds to the dog’s esophagus, intestines and stomach.
Brown rice, millet and whole-wheat pasta are good sources of carbohydrates for a dog’s diet. However, when trying to get your dog to gain weight, these items should account for no more than 20 percent of its total diet.