Preventing Pet Obesity

According to HealthScope, national studies have found that approximately half of all cats and dogs in this country are overweight or obese. Obesity can cause several chronic health problems for your pet. In addition, it can also shorten his life by as much as two years! A lot of this responsibility falls on you as the pet owner. Why? Your cat or dog depends on you to feed them properly, and to give them opportunities to exercise every day. 5 Points Animal Hospital works hard to prevent pet obesity, and we would like to tell you more about this health problem.

What health problems are caused by pet obesity?

If your cat or dog is obese, they are more likely to develop type 2 diabetes. Not to mention, insulin resistance, heart and respiratory disease, high blood pressure, kidney disease, and various types of cancer! Pet obesity is also hard on your pet’s body. This causes your pet to be at a higher risk of having torn knee ligaments and osteoarthritis. The quality of life for your pet is also affected by obesity. Why? They are not able to run, jump, and play around outdoors as comfortably as they did – before they gained so much weight!

How can I prevent pet obesity?

If your pet is at a healthy weight, the most important things you can do to prevent them from becoming obese? Providing them with a balanced diet and with opportunities for daily exercise. Many pet owners do not realize how quickly their pets can gain weight. Many times it begins with just a few extra pounds. However, as pets get older, their weight gain can get out of control. 5 Points Animal Hospital can tell you the caloric needs of your pet. In addition, we can also recommend the best type of food for them. You should also limit treats and never feed your pet table scraps!

Plenty of physical exercise is also key in preventing pet obesity. Do you not have the time to take your dog on a walk every day? If that’s the case, make sure they have plenty of room outside to be able to run around. Monitor your pet’s weight regularly. You should be able to see and feel the outline of their ribs, their waist should be easy to identify, and their belly should not be sagging when you look at them from the side.

How is pet obesity treated?

5 Points Animal Hospital can work with you to find the right diet for your obese pet. Often, a diet that is high in protein will keep your pet satisfied longer. Although a regular exercise routine can also help to reduce weight, excessive physical activity can be hard on your pet’s bones and joints. Although, this depends on how overweight they are. We can let you know when your pet has reached the weight range that is safe for an increase in exercise.

Is your cat or dog overweight? Contact us at 5 Points Animal Hospital to make an appointment to speak with one of our veterinary staff members. We’ll speak to you about the best way to get your pet to a healthy weight!

By Dr. Janet Grace | Tagged with: Tags: , , | Comments Off on Preventing Pet Obesity

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