When humans gain weight and get lazy we have comments to make. We say things like:
“You need to exercise.”
“You should start eating better.”
However, when our pets gain weight we find it cute, adorable and some other words that just wouldn’t seem to fit if they were humans.
When humans gain weight, along with it comes other health problems. Some experience high blood pressure, trouble sleeping or in some cases even joint pain.
Our pets experience much of the same. In fact, there are obesity related conditions that dogs and cats go through, just like humans.
In a recent article, some of the top obesity related conditions were listed, and if you weren’t paying attention you’d think this was a list for humans.
The article cited things such as heart failure, arthritis, diabetes and liver disease.
So, how can you tell if your pet is overweight?
Well, it comes down to looking at some obvious signs. Just as we notice these kinds of things in overweight humans, we can see them in pets as well.
For example, in dogs you may notice things such as moving more slowly than normal, having a hard time walking, or even abnormal breathing such as shortness in breath.
Another sign is simply feeling around your dog’s ribcage. If you find yourself unable to feel their ribs at all, then there is a good chance he or she is overweight.
So what can you do?
Here are three things you can do to help manage your pet’s weight:
#1) Visit Your Pet’s Veterinarian
This should be one of the first things that you should do. Unless you are a Veterinarian yourself, then it may be difficult to determine what weight your pet should be, and what you can do to manage it if they are obese.
Your Veterinarian will be able to tell you if something else is going on besides weight gain, what you can do about it and what you should do about it.
Instead of guessing and potentially making matters worse, speak to your pet’s Veterinarian and get the correct information that you need.
#2) Encourage Exercise
Take your pet for a walk or outside to play in the yard.
Anything you can do to help keep them active, will help to burn off some of that extra weight they are carrying.
If you get a chance to, get into a regular routine of walking your pet to help alleviate some of the weight issues.
#3) Watch Their Diet
Just as humans have a tendency to overindulge, your pet may be eating too much food AND may be eating too much of the wrong kinds of food.
The best way to find this information out is to check with your Veterinarian. Can you see why it’s the #1 point listed here?
You can find out if you are feeding your pet the wrong foods or portions that are just too big.
Pet Weight Obesity Management is not exactly something you may have considered, but if your pet seems to be putting on a bit too much weight, then you need to address this.
Don’t wait until other problems arise from weight issues. Take care of any weight management concerns that your pet may be dealing with now, and give them the quality of life they deserve in the future.
If you have questions about your pet’s weight please contact us at 404-237-4601. The Pharr Road Animal Hospital staff is here to help.
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