Dog Body Condition Scoring System

Determine if your dog is overweight by reading the clues of his body structure.


Body Condition Scoring - Thin1. Very Thin
Ribs: Easily felt with no fat cover.
Tail Base: Bones are raised with no tissue between the skin and bone.
Side View: Severe abdominal tuck.
Overhead View: Accentuated hourglass shape.

2. Underweight
Ribs: Easily felt with little fat cover.
Tail Base: Bones are raised with minimal tissue between the skin and bone.
Side View: Abdominal tuck.
Overhead View: Marked hour-glass shape.

Body Condition Scoring - Ideal3. Ideal
Ribs: Easily felt with slight fat cover.
Tail Base: Smooth contour, but bones can be felt under a thin layer of fat.
Side View: Abdominal tuck
Overhead View: Well-proportioned lumbar waist.

4. Overweight
Ribs: Difficult to feel with moderate fat cover.
Tail Base: Some thickening, but bones can be felt under a moderate layer of fat.
Side View; No abdominal tuck or waist.
Overhead View: Back is slightly broadened.

Body Condition Scoring - Overweight/Obese5. Obese
Ribs: Difficult to feel under thick fat cover.
Tail Base: Thickened and difficult to feel under a prominent layer of fat. 
Side View: Fat hangs from the abdominal and there is no waist. 
Overhead View: Markedly broadened.







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Haley   Arco, ID

7/13/2013 4:56:58 AM

Some breeds, Corgi's, tend to be a little stockier looking. It's good to know your dog's breed and find the ideal weight for that breed. Great article though!

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ziggy   chillicothe, IL

5/13/2013 12:41:36 PM

how much should a one year old pug weigh? I dont think ziggy is fat his parents were very beefy any help please reply.

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Eileen - 249708   Port Perry, ON

12/16/2012 4:46:12 AM

I am always watching my dogs weight, she is a small dog and just a few pounds gained could put in the the overweight class which is very unhealthy.

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skiw9748   Hartford, AL

11/24/2012 7:57:19 AM

Thanks ! Good information to know.

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