If your dog is overweight, it can lead to canine obesity. Just like humans, if a dog is overweight it can lead to health complications which can not only cause pain in your pooch, but also shorten its life expectancy. These complications include joint problems and diabetes. While it a fat dog may look like it is as happy as any other, it is likely to be in considerable pain and it will not have the quality of life many other dogs enjoy. There are different reasons your dog may be fat, but often it is from overfeeding or from feeding the wrong type of food.
We will show you how to know if your dog is fat and what you can do to help them lose weight and become a healthier, happier dog.
Classification in Overweight
|4||Overweight 10-15% above ideal body weight||Ribs, spine and hip bones are hard to feel Waist barely visible with a broad back Layer of fat on belly and at base of tail|
|5||Obese More than 15% above ideal body weight||Ribs, spine and hip bones extremely difficult to feel under a thick layer of fat No waist can be seen and belly may drop Heavy fat pads on lower back and at the base of the tail significantly|
|4||Overweight||Your pet is potentially overweight. Being overweight is unhealthy for pets as it can lead to a shortened lifespan,heart disease, arthritis and diabetes. Speak to your local vet for advice and a thorough health check-up.The vet will look for any underlying health issues, a change of diet and lifestyle is likely to be suggested. Many vet practices run free weight management consultations, ask about these services when you ring to book an appointment.|
|5||Obese||Your pet is likely to be obese and this can have serious medical implications. Being overweight is unhealthy for pets as it can lead to a shortened life-span, heart disease, arthritis and diabetes. Speak to your local vet for advice and a thorough health check-up. The vet will look for any underlying medical reasons as to why your pet may be too heavy. If there are no underlying health issues, a weight loss programme will probably be individually developed for your pet and should include diet and lifestyle changes.|
What’s Causing Weight Gain?
Weight gain in a canine can be a touchy subject for most dog parents, because they are typically responsible their dog’s weight gain in one way or another.
Lack of knowledge – Most of us have a hard time knowing just how much to feed our dog. Check out our recent post—Do You Know How Much You Should Feed Your Dog?—for a quick guide to determining your dog’s ideal daily intake.
Poor quality food – Low-quality ingredients are usually high in calories and low in nutrition. Your dog will feel like it needs to eat more to get what it needs out of its food.
Bad labeling on dog food – The daily feeding requirement labels on your dog’s food will likely represent a figure higher than what your dog actually needs. After all, the sooner you run out of food the sooner you’ll be buying a new bag.
Overfeeding – Food makes our dogs happy, which makes us happy. The problem is that we can easily begin to overfeed our dogs. This is especially true with smaller breeds where a little can go a very long way.
Lack of exercise – We’re all leading busy lives and sometimes we just don’t make time to get Rover out for a walk. An under-exercised dog will put on weight much more quickly than one who gets a daily jaunt around the neighborhood.
How to Reduce Weight and Keep It Under Control
If you find that your dog is too heavy, it’s important to help them slim down and stay in shape in order to lead a happy and healthy life.
Consult with your veterinarian – Have your vet help you decide exactly how much of your particular dog food you should be serving or if another type or brand of food is necessary.
Stop free feeding – If your dog free feeds, you can’t control how much they consume. Be sure to close the buffet immediately and start serving two meals a day.
Portion control – Use a measuring cup to ration your dog’s food at each feeding. This will ensure you don’t inadvertently over-serve.
Portion reduction – Cut your dog’s food intake by 15%-20% for roughly six weeks and measure the results.
Diet dog food – There are several specialty brands formulated to help dogs shed excess weight. These usually contain a lot of fiber and fewer calories to keep your dog feeling full while they slim down.
Quick walks – A brisk pace will help you get your dog’s metabolism going and use up more energy than a leisurely stroll. Consider the benefits for yourself as well!
Stand your ground – Don’t give into those sad little puppy dog eyes. Your dog may follow you around with the “I’m so hungry” face but you’re doing this for their own good.
Regular weigh-ins – Your vet will likely be happy to let you use their scale. Bring your dog in on a weekly basis to ensure they are steadily losing weight.
You’ll be doing your dog a big favor and you’ll only have yourself to thank when they live a longer, happier life.
Please Note-This article has been provided for information purpose only