Pet Obesity Awareness Day is coming up October 10th! Is your dog getting a bit pudgy? If so, your pooch is not alone. Well over half of our canine pals are overweight. In this article from Westside Animal Hospital, a Savannah, GA vet discusses doggy obesity below.
Although any dog can get pudgy, certain breeds are more prone to obesity than others are. Shih Tzus, Yorkies, Rottweilers, Bulldogs, Cocker Spaniels, and Corgis are a few of the breeds that are prone to getting plump. Senior pooches sometimes get chubby, simply because they aren’t as active as younger dogs. Fido may gain weight after being fixed. Your furry companion could also put on extra pounds because of health issues.
Dangers of Obesity
Obesity carries many of the same health risks for dogs as it does for people. Chubby pups are more likely to develop heart problems, liver and kidney issues, respiratory trouble, and even certain cancers. That additional weight also increase your canine buddy’s risk of having complications after surgery, and can contribute to painful bone/joint problems, like hip dysplasia and arthritis.
Feeding The Pooch
Your pup’s diet will play a large role in his overall weight. Serving size is very important here: even giving Fido a few calories too many each day can cause him to gain a pound a year. That’s a lot for a dog! Our four-legged pals are also expert beggars, and are very good at getting us to fork over fatty snacks. Treats are fine, but don’t overindulge your pooch. Follow your vet’s nutritional recommendations.
Make sure your furry buddy is getting the right type and amount of exercise. Fido’s exact activity needs will depend on his age, breed, weight, and health, but most pups need a daily walk, at the very least. Playing games like Fetch or Tag with your pooch can help keep him fit and healthy. Ask your vet for more information.
Helping Fido Lose Weight
If your dog is turning into a furry butterball, ask your vet for advice on helping him trim down. Never put Fido on a crash diet! This can wreak havoc with your pet’s metabolism, and could make him very ill.
Please feel free to call us here at Westside Animal Hospital, your Savannah, GA animal clinic, with any questions or concerns about your dog’s weight, diet, or exercise needs. We’re here to help!