Obesity in Dogs

Is your canine buddy starting to look a bit round? If so, you may have a pudgy pet on your hands. While we can’t deny that chubby pups are adorable, the truth is that being overweight or obese is very, very bad for Fido’s health. In this article, a local Bowmanville, ON vet discusses obesity in dogs.

Health Risks

Obesity can increase Fido’s chances of developing several dangerous health problems, including heart disease; liver trouble; diabetes; respiratory issues; skin problems; and painful bone/joint conditions, such as arthritis and hip dysplasia. Overweight dogs also have increased risks of complications after surgery, and are more likely to have trouble reproducing.

Diet

As one might expect, diet plays a huge role in your four-legged friend’s weight. Give your furry companion the best food you can afford, but don’t overindulge him with fatty treats and snacks. Feeding your pup just a few extra calories a day can cause him to pack on the pounds. Begging is another issue. We all know that our canine pals are masters at convincing us to hand over yummy tidbits. Don’t fall for your pet’s theatrics! If you absolutely can’t resist those big sad eyes, give Fido a carrot instead of that sausage he’s hoping for. Ask your vet for specific nutritional advice.

Exercise

Some of our canine friends are very playful and active. Others . . . not so much. If you have a furry couch potato on your hands, you may need to tempt your pet into moving. Most of our four-legged friends need a daily walk, at the very least. If you’re not very energetic yourself, choose activities that keep your pup moving while you stay still, such as playing fetch or having your pooch chase the dot from a laser pointer. Fido’s activity requirements will depend on his age, weight, health, and breed, so ask your vet for specific recommendations.

Helping Fido Slim Down

Just like people, dogs need to lose weight slowly in order to trim down safely. Never put your furry buddy on a crash diet. This is very bad for Fido’s metabolism, and could make him very sick! Consult your vet before making any changes to your pet’s diet.

Do you know or suspect that your dog needs to drop a few pounds? Contact us today! As your local Bowmanville, ON animal clinic, we are always happy to help!