How to get a German Shorthaired Pointer to Gain Weight?

With its naturally lean muscled body and endless energy levels, the German Shorthaired Pointer (GSP) is an excellent hunting and running companion; some owners, however, might be concerned that their energetic K9 companions are getting too skinny.

These concerns might very well be justified, so how does one get a German Shorthaired Pointer to gain weight?

There are various alternatives in getting a German Shorthaired Pointer to gain weight. Changing the dog’s food, increasing its daily rations, introducing supplements and snacks to its diet, and limiting its daily playtime are all solutions that will aid in helping a GSP reach its ideal body weight.

Generally, GSPs appear thin compared to other dogs, but how do you know whether your four-legged friend’s physique is normal or whether he needs to pack on a few pounds?

How to get your German Shorthaired Pointer to Gain Weight

There are various solutions you can try in getting your GSP to gain weight. However, before implementing these solutions, you first need to determine whether your dog is indeed underweight. If one or more of the following ring true, then your German Shorthaired Pointer is probably too skinny:

  • Your male GSP’s weighs far less than 55 pounds.
  • Your female GSP weighs far less than 45 pounds.
  • Its spine, ribs, and hip bones are clearly visible.

If one or more of the above applies to your GSP, then you urgently need to do something so that he gains some weight. Let’s have a look at some tried and tested solutions:

Changing the diet of a German Shorthaired Pointer to achieve weight gain

One solution in getting your GSP to gain weight is by changing his diet. It’s quite possible that his current formula food doesn’t contain enough of all the necessary ingredients that he needs.

Your dog needs a perfectly formulated diet consisting of fat, calories, and protein. Protein is vital as it supplies the body with amino acids, which in turn ensure that your dog’s tendons, muscles, and ligaments are in the best possible condition.

Some of the best formula food for German Shorthaired Pointers are the following:

The Honest Kitchen Whole Grain ChickenDehydrated free-range chicken contains a high amount of protein and fat$63.6910 lbs (4.54 kg)
VICTOR Select Yukon RiverPacked with nutrients loaded with fish protein$59.9930 lbs (13.61 kg)

Increasing a German Shorthaired Pointer’s daily rations to achieve weight gain

Another solution in getting your GSP to gain some weight is by simply changing his daily rations.

The recommended dosage of food is 1 to 1.5 cups of high-quality dry food twice a day. Of course, it all depends on each dog’s energy levels as an active German Shorthaired Pointer will obviously consume more food than its less active counterpart. 

A good starting point in increasing your dog’s weight, though, is by increasing its daily ration of high-quality formula food to ½ cup per day.

Remember, feeding your dog close to bedtime will encourage fat storage, so perhaps it is good to feed him more at night than in the early morning.

Apart from increasing your GSP’s food intake by ½ cup per day, your dog might also gain weight by something as simple as increasing his feeding times.

Instead of feeding him twice a day, divide his daily intake by 4 or 5 smaller meals throughout the day. Increasing his meals will allow your dog to consume more calories, which will help him gain some weight.

Introducing supplements and snacks to a German Shorthaired Pointer for weight gain

Apart from changes in food and daily rations, another excellent solution in getting your German Shorthaired Pointer to gain weight is introducing supplements and snacks to his diet.

Let’s have a look at some natural and powdered supplements you can feed your GSP:

Natural snacks and supplements

  • Bison is an excellent supplement as it contains high amounts of fat and protein.
  • Fruits and vegetables are great snacks. Chilled carrot sticks and apple pieces are not only great for cooling off after vigorous exercise, but they will also provide your dog with some much-needed vitamins. Furthermore, carrots contain potassium, which is excellent for building muscles.
  • Multivitamin chews are another great supplement as they will provide your GSP with essential vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants.
  • Another delicious option that promotes weight gain is peanut butter, as it provides nutrients, fiber, protein, and healthy fats.

Powdered supplements

Before putting your German Shorthaired Pointer on mass gaining powdered supplements, you should always check with your vet first.

One powdered supplement currently on the market is the MVP K9 Formula Mass Weight Gainer: it is ideal for weight gain and picky eaters and contains 50% healthy fats and 28% whey protein.

Limiting a German Shorthaired Pointer’s daily playtime to achieve weight gain

German Shorthaired Pointers are incredibly energetic and will play and chase all day long without supervision. All this vigorous exercise, of course, is what keeps them lean and agile.

However, if you want your GSP to gain weight, you should probably limit his daily playtime.

According to the American Kennel Club, a German Shorthaired Pointer requires two daily sessions of physical exercise that include running, swimming, and playing.

However, if you want your GSD to gain some weight, it is advisable to limit his activity to only one daily session.

What are the health issues associated with an underweight German Shorthaired Pointer?

Speak to your vet if you’re perhaps reluctant to try some of the solutions that might assist in your German Shorthaired Pointer gaining weight.

If you leave your GSP too skinny and underweight for too long, he might develop some of the following common health problems:

  • Weakening of the immune system
  • Susceptibility to infections
  • Skin and coat problems
  • Infertility
  • Muscle loss
  • Hormonal imbalances
  • Diseases


If you feel that your German Shorthaired Pointer needs to gain weight, don’t hesitate to change his food, increase his daily rations, introduce supplements and snacks to his diet, or limit his daily playtime.

You know what they say: a healthy dog is a happy dog, and a happy dog makes for a happy owner.


An Owner and a huge fan of GSP's! I have owned my GSP for 7 years now and learned so many things along the way to share with you all about German Shorthaired Pointers!

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