German Shepherd Dog > Muscle Building (8 replies)
by jrs1984 on 26 August 2010 - 16:10
|My 18 month old GSD is on the skinny side at 83lb...he's got more energy than he knows what to do with too. I can feel his hip bones on the top and also his chest bone in the front...what can I do to build muscle on him? Swimming would be great but I don't know of a place we could take him around here...also I feed him canidae but he is really itchy, thinking of switching to nutrisource.|
by jc.carroll on 26 August 2010 - 17:14
The GSD is not a bulky breed by nature. 83lbs is an appreciable weight for the average young male. Assuming he's active and physically fit -- neither too skinny, nor too fat -- he should have decent muscle tone at that weight and age. Also figure that he won't finish filling out till sometime between his 2nd and 3rd years, depending on lineage.
by Koach on 26 August 2010 - 17:36
| To build muscle on the dog he:|
- has to be free of parasites, etc.,
- be on a good high protein diet like Orijen or Acana,
- dog needs to sleep well and fully recover.
Best muscle building exercises for dogs are:
- weight pulling; if using a wheeled device then pulling has to be uphill and I don’t really recommend that as if the dog fails the wheeled device could pull him backwards. The best is on the flats using a sleigh, Start with a lightweight such as a concrete block. Have the dog pull for 45 seconds and then rest for 3-4 minutes. Muscle tension should be of 45 to 60 seconds, Eventually, over time build up to 10 repeats for 3 times a week. Once he has reached 3 times a week for 10 reps then slowly increase the weight.
- Sprinting; get a ball thrower and use rubber balls that fit the thrower. Do not use the tennis balls that come with the thrower, as they will wear down the dog’s teeth. Vary between land retrieves and water retrieves.
Long runs won’t put on much muscle. It’s the fast/power and slow/strength work that’s best.
If your dog has prey drive then a tug tied high to a post with a bicycle tire tube will give him a good workout.
by ronin on 26 August 2010 - 21:14
|Are you feeding him Twice a day, this is a must, and a day on the Bones at least once a week.|
Also in terms of the good advice above, don't forget good old walking. We have the Guide Dogs for the Blind training near us, those labs and GSDs only ever walk and they are build like brick sh*t houses. Also in terms of developing make sure the exercising has variety e.g. Monday running for the ball/tug games (sprint type training), Tuesday swimming(low impact cardio muscle conditioning), Wednesday a good walk. Variety like with humans allows for active recovery of the nervous system and muscles/tendons, reducing injury allowing the body to repair and build. He could still fill out in the next year easily.
by KYLE on 26 August 2010 - 21:59
Your dog is young and still growing (even at 83 lbs.),lol. I used to feed canidae but stopped about 3 years ago. I stopped because of the reasons you mentioned, dry ski, excess dander, not keeping weight on. I was once told that if you want to feed your dog quality food, don't feed dry dog food. I personally supplement their kibble with raw restraunt grade chicken. If you do the math raw chicken is often cheaper than kibble. Search the website for food topics, there are millions of threads.
by Blkdog on 27 August 2010 - 01:34
|First of all... Great topic!!! I have a 15 month old male that I would like to see a little more muscle on too... He is very active, and seems to NEVER get tired! lol I used to feed Canidae all life stages, but that could not keep weight on him either, I switched him to Pro Plan Select Salmon formula, and his coat looks much better, no flaking & itching, and it just gleams... I also give raw chicken at least once or twice a week. I also started feeding him twice a day too. He walks with me all the time, up to 3-5 miles and he is still raring to go when we get home. lol When do they really start to put the muscle on, he is young and I do not want to damage anything on him?|
by windwalker18 on 27 August 2010 - 03:24
|Ikon is 17 months old now, and is lean but well muscled. I don't want him any heavier. Ike runs in the yard with our older dog playing chase and keep away (yard's 30 x 50) he also chases balls/ frizbee/ chunks of firewood every chance he gets. I'm sure that racing around with 5# of wood in his mouth bulks up the neck and chest and strengthens those muscles. We go swimming once or twice a week... well he goes in, and I try to avoid being pulled in... he really swims, not just splashes around in the shallows. Again building good muscle witout the stress on growing bones. I guess I'm a rebel as far as food... I have fed Blue Seal Natural 26 for over 20 years, and have been real happy with the results. Not expensive, have no problems with picky eaters. We make a pot of Chicken/brown rice/green beans and carrots every week or so to add for more flavor. All dogs carry the weight I like, good muscle, nice shiny coats... etc. An my Daddy brought me up to believe that "IF IT AIN'T BROKE DON'T FIX IT!" I do use a specialty food for the first 6 months though (used Wolf Cub for Ikon) then they go thru a one month transition to adult food by mixing the 26 with it. |
If you're working him, competing in sport, then that well muscled lean build is exactly where you want him... if you are going to be in the conformation ring, or in AKC obedience then you probably will want more weight on him... it's the old thing that if your dog's fat you love them, but if they're thin then you're cruel... *sigh* Be patient... shepherds don't generally fill out to mature size/weight til they're 2-3 years old.
by blair built gsd on 27 August 2010 - 04:34
|Call natures farmacy tell them what you want to do they are super nice and very helpful they will get you what you need.|
by jrs1984 on 27 August 2010 - 12:51
|Thanks for all the advice...I will put it to good use....I do feed my boy twice a day (3 cups in the am, 2 cups in the pm)...I'm not happy with canidae, but I am nervous about switching because its all he's ever ate...I think we may buy a pool for him...it seems like the best thing...we take him on a 1-2 mile walk everyday, but I will switch that up with some frisbee, fetch, etc to work on his short distance sprints...thanks again everybody|