Obesity is a health problem for humans as well as their pets. The medical world has advanced over the years, giving you the best health options in history. The question is whether your dog enjoys the same health benefits you enjoy. Research has shown that 33 million dogs in the United States are overweight. Unfortunately, only humans understand the developments there are in the world and therefore your dog can only access these facilities through you. Your dog cannot choose its own food, create its own exercise schedule, find itself the best vet doctor or take care of itself. This is why you should be keen to notice any health changes in your dog and give it the attention it requires.
Symptoms of dog obesity
The signs of weight gain in humans are different from those of your pet. You can determine weight changes in your body through the clothes you wear and simple bodily changes. However, it is relatively hard for you to determine whether your dog is overweight by just looking at it. If you wish to know whether your dog is putting on unhealthy weight, you need to be very keen. The following are some of the tips that can help your dog maintain a healthy weight.
Change of habits. If your dog has suddenly become lazy and cannot endure exercise, then there is need for alarm. Inactivity is a sign of a serious health issue, including excessive weight gain.
Excess weight forms fat deposits under the skin surface, and the fastest way to check for this harmful fat deposit is to run your hands around the rib area of your dog. If you cannot feel the ribs, then it is high time you called the vet doctor for examination. Fat can also be deposited around the tummy area. Obesity in canines interferes with the tuck, so you should be on the lookout for any changes. Further, you need to ensure that your dog has a waist line. A bulging waist is an indication of excess weight gain.
Potential causes of canine obesity
The causes of excessive weight gain are almost the same in all living things. Unhealthy feeding is the major cause of canine obesity. Lack of exercise also bars the body the chance to burn excess calories, especially when it is recovering from an illness. Obesity in dogs can also result from hormonal disorder. So far, Cushing's syndrome and hypothyroidism are the most common hormonal issues related to excessive weight gain in dogs. Finally, canine obesity can be caused by genetic factors. For example, breeds such as Pugs, Beagles, English Bulldogs, Dalmatians, Dachshunds and Cocker are prone to obesity and being overweight.
Effects of canine obesity
Obesity in dogs is as destructive as in humans. Most of the health issues associated with overweight humans can also be experienced by obese dogs. Cardiac disease, hypertension, type 2 diabetes, cancer, osteoarthritis, respiratory problems and various orthopedic injuries are some of the health complications related to canine obesity.
Possible solutions for canine obesity
The best way to address canine obesity is to get your dog a good vet doctor. Ensure that your vet carries out wellness exam on your dog at least twice a year. This is the surest way of checking the weight of your dog. Ensure that your dog maintains a healthy weight. In case you confirm a harmful weight gain in your pet, then proceed with the weight loss programs below.
The traditional dog food helps majority of dogs maintain a healthy weight. If your dog is putting on excess weight, then you can try feeding your dog with the traditional diet. Your vet will always give you the right weight loss diet for your dog. However, you need to observe the same feeding schedule recommended for weight management in humans. Keep junk and sugary foods from your dog. Avoid including fatty foods in your dog's meal, but instead go for foods with high fiber content. Natural diets are also recommended for weight loss in canines.
Feeding your dog with healthy foods alone is not enough. You need to be careful how you feed your dog. Reduce the feeding times to a maximum of three times a day. If you have many dogs, try to serve each of it separately. Reduce dog treats to a maximum of 10 per cent of the meal you serve your overweight dog. Remember to use the right treats for a weight loss program. Avoid treats with a high calorie level such as cheese. You can try to substitute over the counter treats with fruit treats. Most of the fruits you take are good for your dog, especially apples, papaya and berries. Be careful when serving your dog with fruits though, as some of them contain poisonous components. You can also feed your dog with vegetables such as carrots. Fruits and vegetables should be serves between 30-60 minutes before the main meal. If diet does not help, then you can put your dog through the slentrol drug.
Exercise is another effective way of shedding excessive weight in dogs. It works for your pet dog just the same way it works on you. A dog that has began lazing around needs your help to resume its active life. Take it for a walk every day. You can include it in your own exercise program. Play with your dog to help it shed the extra weight. Do not overwork your dog, however. The health of your dog is in your hands, and only you can decide for it the right course of action. Excessive weight can bar your dog from long and faster walks, but do not give up on it. Walk it in a pace it can manage, and for a duration it can endure.
As you proceed with the exercise program, arrange for weekly checkups with the vet doctor for regular monitoring of your dog and appropriate professional weight management advice. Alternatively, check the weight of your dog in the nearest vet clinic for free to see if you have made any progress. Remember that a vet doctor and canine rehabilitation professionals can be of great assistance in regard to the health of your dog.
This is your chance to add your feedback. Do you have more questions about your over-weight dog that either Dog Nation or another of our visitors might be able to help you with? How about additional tips? Please feel free to add your comment or question below.
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Henry Ward Beecher