There is an epidemic sweeping across America that is effecting over half of our pets. Our pets are too fat! I fact many are considered obese. The culprits, too much food, too much of the wrong food and not enough exercise. Does that sound familiar? So what do with a overweight cat or overweight dog? First, talk to you veterinarian. At Village Vet Animal Clinic we can help you know how much overweight your pet is and suggest both diets and exercise that can trim your furry companions down. The article below offers some great pointers on how to get this done.
How to Identify and Assist Your Overweight Dog
A recent survey indicates over 50 percent of America’s pet population is overweight or obese. If you or your veterinarian feel that your pet would benefit from a reduction in body weight, this discussion should help you to understand how to help overweight dogs lose weight. Weight loss for obese cats, however, is more complicated and should not be done without a veterinarian’s supervision.
Very simply put, if your pet is overweight it is taking in (eating) more calories than it needs. Set all excuses aside … excessive weight in an otherwise healthy pet is a direct result of consuming unnecessary amounts of food. If your pet is overweight it should be examined for heart, thyroid or other metabolic disorders. A detailed history should be taken with emphasis on frequency of exercise, amount and type of food being provided and other parameters relative to calorie requirements.
To begin let us set the record straight on some common misconceptions regarding obesity. Healthy dogs and cats do not necessarily need to eat every day; the pet food industry has painted the picture for us of the “eager eater.” The impression is that a happy, healthy pet will eat every meal with gusto. Please do not try to entice your pet to eat if it isn’t interested. If you provide a good quality food and a liberal amount of water, your pet will eat when it wants and do better than having to eat when you want.
Another common myth maintains that spaying or neutering causes obesity. This is absolutely false (see other myths about spaying and neutering here). Any pet, neutered or not, will gain weight if it is over fed relative to its energy requirements. The surgical procedure may slightly slow the pet’s metabolism, as will normal aging, and it will then burn calories off more slowly; therefore, it may require less food. Keep in mind the surgery doesn’t cause the weight gain, eating too much does and you have control over that.
See full story on PetMD.com