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Diet and Exercise

How to tell if your pet is overweight

If you’re like most Australian pet owners, you’re probably concerned about the overall well being of your animal. However, sometimes what seems loving such as feeding your dog extra treats, can actually bad for your pet.If a friend or family member has ever called your dog or cat “fat”, then maybe you should take a step back and evaluate your pet’s health.

This is what you should consider:

  • Food

Are you overfeeding your animal because you “think” it is hungry? If you are feeding it more than its daily (or twice-daily) meal, or if you are feeding it food that is not meant for animal consumption such as sweet things, then your pet may have a problem.

  • Body

Have a look at your dog’s or cat’s body. From above, what does their body shape look like? Is it large and round, or can you clearly see the contours of their body? Ideally, you should see the latter. Also, feel your pet’s rib cage. If the grooves of the bones are difficult to feel or find, then your pet may have a problem with their weight.

  • Exercise

If your dog is reluctant to go for a walk or play outside, then you need to ask yourself why your pet is so lethargic. Normally, a healthy pet should be enthusiastic to go for a run and have a good exercise session. If your animal shows no signs of enthusiasm for any activities, you should take a look at their weight.

What you can do to manage this problem

Not all hope is lost, even if your cat looks like Garfield. You can reverse obesity by visiting your vet at least once a year for an overall health check, and introducing your pet to a healthy lifestyle. This is what you can do today to avoid your pet’s risk for diabetes, heatstroke and osteoarthritis:

  • Manage its diet If your pet seems to be constantly hungry, you could break up its meals so that you feed it twice a day. You can also find protein-rich pellets at your vet or pet store instead of high-fat pet food. There is also another way to help your pet with the in-between meal snacks; we suggest letting your dog chew on a carrot, which is low in calories and can help suppress their cravings.
  • Insist on exercise Even if you aren’t into running yourself, you should get your dog to run or move around more than what you are currently doing. You could easily throw a chew-toy or a stick and have it run to fetch it, or if your animal is a retriever, the best exercise could be taking it for a swim. The point is, just try to get your pet to move a bit more than usual, and then build on the habit.

Help end obesity in pets by paying closer attention to what you feed them and how much exercise they do.

For more helpful information about how you can ensure your pet remains a healthy weight, be sure to get in contact with us today!

 Related Tag: Pet Vet