Owners are becoming increasingly concerned about their animal’s health and with a sharp rise in pet obesity causing similar issues found in humans it is little wonder many are looking at ways they can provide healthier dog’s dinners and provide them with the level of exercise that they need to stay fit.
Obesity in our four-legged friends is growing, and it’s triggered by the same factors which have led to the rise in human obesity – overfeeding and a lack of proper, regular exercise.
Owners are now approaching their pet’s diet requirements with a human touch, and many pet food brands are launching their own diet foods akin to the latest human healthy eating trends.
There are two questions owners need to ask; what are the signs that my dog is overweight and what do I do if my pet is overweight? By doing so, you might be able to fight that puppy fat!
What are the signs that my dog is overweight?
- Can you feel your dog’s ribs? If you have to apply pressure to the chest to feel ribs, it might be a sign that your dog is overweight.
- Is your dog getting breathless? Dogs who have difficulties breathing or who tire fast after very little physical exertion may be obese.
- Does your dog struggle to digest and go to the toilet? If your dog is having trouble going to the toilet or suffers from constipation, obesity could be a factor.
- Is your dog moving awkwardly? Dogs with obesity may move more awkwardly as it’s a contributing factor to bone and joint problems.
What do I do if my pet is overweight?
- Calculate the calories: Work out how many calories your dog should be consuming each day and that way you’ll know how much to feed them. Each pet’s metabolism is different so consult your vet.
- Be tactical with treats: If you’re going to give your pets treats, factor them into their daily calorie intake. Too many pet treats are full of sugar and fat – try healthier treats which clean teeth at the same time.
- Veg is vital: An alternative to processed treats can be baby carrots, green beans or sliced apples. No different to the human diet – offer some colour and embrace the
- Walkies! Research proves the most powerful weapon in reducing your pet’s weight is daily exercise. For dogs, as little as 30-minutes of brisk walking is all it takes to make a big difference!
How it all adds up
Why not try an online dog food calculator? Here’s a handy way for you to calculate how much your dog should be eating, based on their size and their activity levels.
By Jacob White