Feeding a Lhasa Apso

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According to one source on , the original temple diet of the would have consisted mostly of “domesticated yak, mountain goat, bear, or lama” as well as “barley and rice crops”, “dried berries”, and of course… bones. Since the breed developed using these food stuffs, it would seem prudent to try to find similar with similar nutrient profiles – in other words, similar amino acid profiles combined with a somewhat higher carbohydrate level than for other .

Since most of us do not live in the wild Tibetan mountains, we have to try to make do with what is available in the supermarket.

A good place to start is with meat. Lamb and beef are good suggestions, which many Lhasa owners supplement with sardines in oil. Berries, dried or fresh, are available in some form year round – dried berries being common in the “bulk” foods section of many supermarkets. Barley and rice are ingredients commonly found in premium dried dog food, or you can create your own “mush” using the packaged varieties of the grains.

Bones are important to all dogs, not only to satisfy their gnawing instinct, but to clean their teeth as well. Not all dogs do well with over-cooked bones, so if your dog does have teeth issues it might be a good idea to “soften” the bones either with soaking/simmering them in water or by not cooking them to begin with. Of course all dogs love bones that still has a bit of meat on them 🙂

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  1. Hi Martin. Sounds like you might have had a “big” Lhasa Apso to begin with. According to the Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, an adult Lhasa should weigh between 13 and 15 lbs. Of course, that would be the standard for a show dog, and “regular” dogs can quite often vary quite a bit from the standard (I had a cocker spaniel once that was easily twice the size of a normal cocker).

    The sudden weight loss is somewhat disturbing, however. There could be some internal problem causing your dog to burn more calories than he is eating. Or, it can sometimes be due to teeth problems that make eating painful. Cold weather can also make a dog’s body burn calories for warmth, and dogs that are working hard use more calories too. Have you perhaps been exercising him more lately without increasing his food intake?

    Just be sure to follow up with your vet and make sure you take his/her advice.

    • martin weiss
    • February 3, 2008

    i have a 2 yr old lhasa apso. i am concerned about his weight,
    he is a male dog. he did weigh 26 pounds, but is now down to
    19 pounds (unexplained). the vet is looking into it. What should
    his weight be normally. thanks, martin

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