in

What Should My Dog’s Ideal Weight Be, and How Do I Calculate It?

According to statistics, one in three domestic dogs is overweight or obese. If your dog is within a healthy weight, you should be able to see his waist point (an hourglass figure) when viewed from above.

How much should a dog weigh in kg?

Ideal dog weight. What should my dog’s ideal weight be? Are you sure you know if your dog is fit and at the right weight? It is often the case that owners do not realise the correct importance of their pets. Find out how to do this in this guide.

The difficulty in establishing the correct weight of our dog stems from the fact that there are many different breeds and, above all, sizes.

Half a kilo of excess weight on a Great Dane does not have the same impact as on a Chihuahua. So does saying that one’s dog weighs 30 kilos without knowing whether it is a German Shepherd or a Pug. Furthermore, it is not always easy to remember the reference parameters for each breed, expressed in Kg.

For this reason, nutritionists and veterinarians, in general, have established the need to create a typical value that can identify a state, a condition of ideal form, independent of weight in kg, but selected based on appearance-related characteristics.

In this article, we will focus on the determination of the B.C.S., a simple tool for determining the correct weight of a dog.

Why is a dog’s weight ideal significant?

Is 25kg heavy for a dog?
Beautiful dog standing on a weight scale at the vet.

Weight is one of the cornerstones of maintaining the health of all living beings. But its excess, too often underestimated, causes even severe diseases.

A recent study showed that 50% of dogs in England are overweight (10% obese – 40% overweight).

This is very serious because of the risks run by those affected.

The most frequent consequences are:

  • Joint problems—The joints of an overweight individual are stimulated and worn more; therefore, the dog will experience osteoarthritis faster. Did you know that the first intervention against joint pain is weight loss?
  • Cardiovascular problems – as with us, excess fat in dogs causes more significant cardiac strain, with the possibility of early decompensation.
  • Lower exercise tolerance – an obese or overweight individual will find it much harder to move (resulting in less ability to lose weight, in a vicious cycle that only leads to trouble)
  • Lower heat tolerance – obese dogs are likelier to suffer heat stroke, even in non-critical temperatures.
  • Difficulty disposing of drugs – if drugs (particularly anaesthetics) are administered, and surgery or sedation is necessary, the dog will have more problems disposing of the drugs with less rapid recovery.
  • Poor quality of life and chronic stress – these difficulties also lead to poor quality of life for the dog, which will suffer physically and psychologically with a natural deterioration in its quality of life.
  • Endocrine disorders – such as diabetes mellitus
  • Inflammatory pathologies: Fat comprises active cells that constantly produce substances and chemical mediators linked to inflammation, resulting in faster organ deterioration.
Why do some dogs not eat in their owner's absence?
High-Quality Dog Training Course!

Dog’s ideal weight. The causes of overweight or obesity

While in humans, the lifestyle and the inability to regulate oneself with food are the main reasons for being overweight, in our pets, the cause is primarily our inability to feed them properly.

Dogs depend on us for this. So if they gain weight, it is because they have been given an excess ration or a quality unsuitable for them and their lifestyle. Have you ever wondered why a wild animal is never overweight?
The answer does not lie in its inability to find food but in its ability to adjust to its needs.

Here are the most frequent mistakes

  • Feeding extra rations – is also food and should be calculated in its percentage.
  • Feeding leftovers from the table – deleterious, especially sweets, pasta, etc.
  • Low physical activity results in poor metabolic activation to burn the calories introduced.

Other predisposing causes of obesity and overweight are certainly

  • Overweight as a puppy – an unbalanced diet as a puppy will result in a greater tendency to become overweight as an adult
  • Sterilisation – after sterilisation, there is a reduction of about 20% in the metabolism, which, if not balanced and adjusted even in a reduction of the ratio, could influence the dog’s weight

How do you calculate a dog’s ideal weight? B.C.S., Body Condition Score, the summary table

How much does the average dog weigh in kg?
Body weight assessment, Taken from W.S.A.V.A.

We then come to the explanation of assessing our dog’s fitness. First, we must learn to observe our furry one and then adequately touch him. The observation must be done from above, looking at the silhouette of the hips (as in the illustration above) and from the side to look at the belly line and the bony protrusions at the hip level.

Palpation should allow us to perceive the fat mass, bony ribs, and protrusions below the hair with a gentle but firm touch. The B.C.S. is a semi-objective value, allowing us to indicate how:

  1. B.C.S. – Emaciated, Severely Underweight
  2. B.C.S. – Very Thin
  3. B.C.S. – Thin
  4. B.C.S. – Slightly Underweight
  5. B.C.S. – Ideal weight, Fit
  6. B.C.S. – Slightly overweight
  7. B.C.S. – Overweight
  8. B.C.S. – Obese
  9. B.C.S. – Severely Obese

B.C.S.: 1 Emaciated, severely underweight

How do I know my dog's ideal weight?

Cachexia: more than 20% below optimal weight

  • Ribs, spine and pelvic bones are visible (in short-haired subjects).
  • Evident loss of muscle mass.
  • Absence of palpable fat on the rib cage and bony prominences.
  • Ribs, lumbar vertebrae, pelvic bones and all bony prominences are visible at a distance.
  • Body fat is not discernible.

B.C.S.: 2 Very Thin

Thinness 10-20% below optimum weight

  • Ribs, tops of vertebrae and pelvic bones are visible.
  • Obvious abdominal girdle (waistline).
  • Absence of palpable fat around the rib cage
  • Minimal loss of muscle mass
  • Minimal presence of natural fat.
  • Tops of lumbar vertebrae are visible.
  • Pelvic bones become prominent.
  • The waist is evident.

B.C.S.: 3 Thin

How do I know if my dog is the right weight?

Skinny

  • The ribs and spine are not visible but palpable.
  • Obvious abdominal girdle (waistline).
  • Thin palpable fatty layer on the rib cage
  • Ribs are real without excessive fat cover.
  • Waist observable behind the ribs from above.
  • Abdominal fold present.

B.C.S.: 4 Slightly underweight

Slightly underweight

  • Ribs are easily palpable with minimal fat covering.
  • Abdomen:
    • Distinct waistline when viewed from above with a slight hourglass shape
    • Abdominal fold evident
  • The base of the tail: raised bony structures with small subcutaneous tissue.

B.C.S.: 5 Ideal weight, Fit

How can you tell if a dog is overweight?

Ideal weight

  • Ribs are palpable with thin, overlying fat.
  • Other bony prominences are palpable with minimal overlying fat.
  • Abdomen
    • distinguishable waist if observed above
    • sunken abdomen if observed from the side
  • Tail base: smooth contour
    observable bony structures under a thin layer of subcutaneous fat.

B.C.S.: 6 Slightly overweight

Slightly overweight

  • Palpable ribs with slight excess fat cover.
  • Abdomen:
    • The waist is discernible but not evident when viewed from above.
    • When viewed from the abdominal wall side with slight dimpling.
  • Tail base: smooth contour
    • palpable bony structures under a moderate subcutaneous fat layer.

B.C.S.: 7 Overweigh

How often should dogs be weighed?

Overweight: 10-20% above the optimal weight

  • Ribs difficult to palpate – a thick layer of fat
  • Lumbar region – visible fat deposits
  • Abdomen
    • waist absent or barely noticeable when viewed from above
    • slight dimpling of the abdominal wall may be present
  • Tail base – fat deposits visible on the tail base
  • Palpable bony structures under the subcutaneous fat layer.

B.C.S.: 8 Obese

Obese

  • Ribs are non-palpable under a thick fat layer or only palpable with significant pressure.
  • Lumbar and neck – voluminous fat deposits
  • Abdomen:
    • absent waist when viewed from above and
    • lack of dimpling of the abdominal wall when viewed from the side.
    • Marked abdominal distension may be present.
  • Tail base: voluminous fat deposits
    • underlying bony structures difficult to palpate

B.C.S.: 9 Severely Obese

What are the signs of overweight dog?

Severely obese: 40% or more above optimal weight

  • Massive fat deposition on chest, spine, lumbar, neck, and groin areas.
  • Ribs – tough to palpate other bony prominences are covered by extensive fat deposition between bone and skin
  • Abdomen:
    • Waist absent, and if viewed from above, the stomach is greatly enlarged
    • if viewed from the side, abdominal wall dimpling is absent
    • evident abdominal distension.
  • The base of the tail: bony structures are almost impossible to palpate due to an extensive fat deposit between them and the skin.
  • After this test, the dog can be weighed for a benchmark to check over time.

Despite the difficulty of giving absolute numbers according to breed and age, let us see some numbers that can help us assess the dog’s weight as a single determination value.

Table of ideal adult dog weight according to size

These numbers can also be considered when assessing whether your assessment of the correct weight (based on the objectivity of the table described above) aligns with these parameters.

In general, based on size, the table for calculating the ideal adult dog weight is as follows:

  • Mini-sized dog – weight less than 5 kg
  • Small dog – weight between 5 and 10 kg
  • Medium-sized dog – weight between 10 and 25 kg
  • Large dog – weight between 25 and 45 kg
  • Giant dog – weight between 45 and 90 kg

Small dogs are considered adults as early as eight months, while large dogs become adults between 18 and 24 months of age.

Table of ideal dog weight by breed as an adult

Below, we list the ideal weight for some of the most common dog breeds, bearing in mind that, within each species, there is also significant variability depending on the dog’s sex:

  • Chihuahua – between 1.5 and 3 kg
  • Maltese – between 1 and 3.5 kg
  • Bichon Frisé – between 5 and 10 kg
  • Dachshund – between 7 and 15 kg
  • Beagle – between 9 and 11 kg
  • Siberian Husky – between 16 and 27 kg
  • Chow Chow – between 20 and 32 kg
  • Pug – between 6.30 and 8.1 kg
  • French Bulldog – between 8 and 14 kg
  • Golden Retriever – between 27 and 34 kg
  • German Shepherd > between 22 and 40 kg

How do you determine the puppy’s weight correctly?

To check that the puppy is growing correctly, it is important to weigh it every day during the first two weeks of life and then every three days until it is one month old: depending on the size and breed, the vet will indicate the ideal weight for each week of the puppy’s life.

Here is a general summary of puppy growth by weight:

  • Puppies up to 4 months of age -an increase of 2 to 4 g per day per kg of expected adult weight
  • From 4 months onwards – the puppy weighs 50% of the expected adult weight
  • Adult dog – ideal weight is reached at different ages depending on size and breed.

How do you weigh your dog at home?

Several valuable methods exist for regularly and accurately checking your dog’s weight and determining whether he is gaining weight and needs remedial action with exercises and a diet for overweight dogs.

Puppies and small dogs can be weighed on a kitchen scale, while large dogs should be considered with the help of a bathroom scale.
The best trick is to use a box or basket: first, weigh the empty box or basket, place the dog in the basket or box on the scales and then subtract the container’s weight.

If the dog is of a size that can be held in your arms, you can also step on the scales with Fido and subtract your weight. For larger dogs that are difficult to weigh at home, it is a good idea to consult a vet for regular checks.

Waltham S.H.A.P.E.

What are the dog sizes by weight chart kg?
Waltham shape score for dogs

As you can see, it is not always easy, so I provide a tool for you as a dog or cat owner: the Waltham S.H.A.P.E. (Size, Health and Physical Evaluation). To determine whether your dog is fit, follow the table’s instructions until you reach the correct score. If you need advice on fattening or slimming your dog, consult a veterinary nutritionist.

Thank you for reading the article to the end. Your reading contribution was significant to us.

Affiliate Disclosure: The Frenchie Breed website may receive a small commission from the proceeds of any product(s) sold through affiliate and direct partner links at no cost to you.

Follow Frenchie Breed on Google News

+ posts

The "Frenchie Breed" website is a blog aimed at dog owners. We regularly publish articles about our four-legged furry friends. Among the contents of our blog, you will find ample space on the latest news in the sector, with information and in-depth analysis dedicated to the world of dogs in all its forms, the latest trends and news of the moment, curious facts, events devoted to dogs, product reviews, as well as an intense activity of information regarding the health and well-being of pets.

Please Note: The articles in the 'Frenchie Breed Blog' are for information purposes only; nothing published can or should be construed as an attempt to offer professional advice or consultation with a physician, veterinary surgeon or another health professional.

Leave a Reply

What do you think?

89.1k Points
Upvote Downvote

Written by Frenchie Breed

The "Frenchie Breed" website is a blog aimed at dog owners. We regularly publish articles about our four-legged furry friends. Among the contents of our blog, you will find ample space on the latest news in the sector, with information and in-depth analysis dedicated to the world of dogs in all its forms, the latest trends and news of the moment, curious facts, events devoted to dogs, product reviews, as well as an intense activity of information regarding the health and well-being of pets.

Please Note: The articles in the 'Frenchie Breed Blog' are for information purposes only; nothing published can or should be construed as an attempt to offer professional advice or consultation with a physician, veterinary surgeon or another health professional.

Why do some dogs not eat in their owner's absence?

Understanding Why Your Dog Won’t Eat Alone and How to Help

Water is also essential for detoxification, so make sure your pet has access to fresh, clean water at all times.

The Detox Effect – Why Your Pet Needs A Purifying Diet