The Pet Obesity problem
The pet obesity rate is growing to alarming numbers in Australia. This extra weight is a real problem for your dog or cat, increasing the risk of diabetes, musculoskeletal disease, hypertension, and ultimately shortening their lifespan. The common way pets can become overweight is usually from under-exercising and overfeeding.
The breed or age of your pet can also be a factor in pet obesity. As pet owner, it is up to us to make sure our pets are healthy and living their best lives.
Pay close attention to your dog or cat as some breeds that are prone to put on weight:
Here are ways to keep your pet’s weight under control and healthy:
#1 Controlled Feeding
Allowing food to be always available for your pet could be a problem waiting to happen. This feeding method means that your pet decides when they eat, and although it may be convenient, it is not a worry-free solution.
Having this food available means that it will be difficult to track what your dog or cat is eating. Keeping track of eating habits can show important signs, such as a lack of appetite or overfeeding. It can also affect their house manners and training.
It’s simple to overestimate your pet’s food portions, so measure their food carefully. More often dogs and cats will eat until they are full, so it is up to you to correctly provide their food portion and schedule their meals.
Controlled feeding can also be paired with spreading out meals. You can provide multiple, small meals during the day. If you have any questions or concerns, contact your local vet about your situation.
#2 Stop giving table scraps
Table scraps for cats and dogs should be avoided at all costs. Feeding human food to our pets is a major factor in weight gain and it’s not too good for your cat or dog. As well as some food being toxic, human good is higher calorie compared to pet designed food.
Combine that with unwanted behaviour that you are training your pets to think is acceptable. This leads to the common reason why it’s not good to feed table scraps to your pet
#3 Regular Exercise
Your pets’ weight is also determined by how much exercise they receive as well. It’s important to set aside time every day to exercise your pet so that it increases their metabolism.
A good diet paired with regular exercise is the perfect way to maintain a healthy weight for your dog. Exercise such as walks plays a major role in their happiness and health. It is key to match your dog’s food intake with energy so they can burn it off. Most dogs will require regular walks twice a day, if this is not possible food intake may have to be limited.
When possible, you should also take your cat on walks, however, most cats like to walk themselves freely. Exercise should be a part of every cat’s day, even if they are indoor cat. These days cat tunnels and gyms are readily available and keep your pet fit and healthy. Cat toys and balls to keep them entertained with less damage to your furniture.
#4 Controlled Treats
Treats are also a way to control your pet’s weight, as too many can lead to the same problems as overfeeding. They are the best way to train your cat and dog to behave but only in controlled quantities.
If treats the way you training your pet, look for healthy alternatives to compensate for the extra treats. You might be surprised by the natural fruit and vet that your pet may like, there are even some easy recipes you can make.
In conclusion, now is the best time to take control of your pet’s weight. Pet obesity can lead to several health issues and problems. By utilising these 4 tips it will ensure your dog or cat lives a happy and healthy life.
At My OwnVet, we are more than help your plans to maintain and control your pet’s weight. If you are concerned about your pet’s weight call our office at 07 3277 6594 or use our online booking to schedule your appointment!
Until next time,
Your friend and vet expert,