Dog condition score chart

The descriptions and images on this page are indicative only. You should consult your vet on the health of your dog.

Emaciated

Sketch of dog, very thin with ribs showing

An emaciated dog's condition is:

  • individual ribs, spine and pelvis prominent and evident from a distance
  • lack of muscle mass
  • little or no body fat
  • rump hollow
  • waist prominent when viewed from above
  • abdomen obviously tucked up
  • neck thin
  • no fat on tail

Veterinary advice must be sought.

Thin

Sketch of dog with ribs showing at bottom of stomach

A thin dog's condition is:

  • ribs, spine and pelvis bones visible and easily felt
  • little body fat
  • neck thin
  • abdomen tucked up
  • little fat on tail
  • obvious waist when viewed from above

Increase feeding and worm dog if not wormed recently (ensure 'all-wormer' is used — some products do not cover all worms).

Seek vet advice if dog remains underweight or if you are unsure of feeding or worming regime.

Ideal

Sketch of dog with ribs showing at bottom of stomach

An ideal dog's condition is:

  • ribs and spine can be felt, last few ribs may be visible
  • dog should have a waist when viewed from above
  • belly is tucked up when viewed from side
  • good muscle mass
  • rump well muscled

Overweight

Sketch of overweight dog with some rolls of fat around neck and no definition in body

An overweight dog's condition is:

  • ribs and spine not visible but can be felt
  • fat deposit on tail
  • little or no waist when viewed from above, rounded appearance, back appears broadened
  • dog squarish along back line when viewed from side
  • abdomen not tucked up, may appear rounded underneath

Reduce feed intake or provide lower calorie feed. Increase exercise. Seek vet advice if you are unsure of appropriate diet or you have concerns over your dog's exercise regime.

Obese

Sketch of obese dog with no body definition and rolls at neck and back

An obese dog's condition is:

  • ribs and spine not visible and difficult to feel
  • tail has obvious fat deposit
  • no waist and back broadened when viewed from above
  • belly obviously rounded and possibly distended
  • dog square or rounded up along back line when viewed from side

Seek veterinary advice on diet and exercise regime.

Page last updated: 05 Jul 2021