An overweight pet can suffer a variety of complications caused by their heavy build. In addition to leading to heart complications and poor health, an overweight pet puts more strain on their joints and is at greater risk for arthritis. According to the Association for Pet Obesity Prevention, more than 52% of dogs and more than 58% of cats are found to be overweight by their veterinarian. This shockingly high figure points to an unsettling trend, as cases of obesity have been increasing over the years.
Now, itís crucial that we begin to reverse this trend by taking proper care of our pets and spreading the word. Many pet owners might not know how simple it is to resolve the problem of an overweight pet. If your pet is overweight- then simply follow these five tips to help your pet trim down into a healthy figure.
1. Check with Your Veterinarian
Before making changes in your petís daily life, itís important that you check in with the experts. Itís important to check with your veterinarian to make sure that your dog or cat is overweight and if so, then to what extent. You donít want to put an underweight pet on a diet, or to cut out deprive a diabetic pet of necessary sustenance.Trouble getting up and lying downReluctance to exerciseFatigue from everyday activityA visible gut
The following are signs that indicate that you should bring your pet to the veterinarian to discuss their weight problem:
Your veterinarian will produce more vitals then simply your catís weight. Other factors that may influence their diet such as anemia or diabetes should be identified by your vet. Any relevant diagnose will change the diet of your pet, so this is an important step. If there are no complications affecting your pet, your veterinarian may help suggest a healthy diet and portion size for achieving a healthy weight.
2. Eat Healthy
There are a wide variety of food types and brands available for your pet and many are perfectly healthy formulas. However, to lose weight, it might be beneficial to find a formula that caters specifically to pets that need to shed pounds. It can also be useful to enforce regular eating habits for your pet to ensure that their metabolism stays healthy. It can also be useful to use a special bowl to control their eating pace.
It can be useful to feed your pet two times a day instead of once per day to help them metabolize the food and keep an active lifestyle throughout the day. Owners who typically feed their pet once per day should divide the suggested daily meal into two equal portions. One portion should be fed in the morning and the second should be fed eight to twelve hours later. Monitor your pet during this transition to determine if these amounts need any adjustment.
3. Exercise More
To lose weight, your pet must burn more calories than they consume. For some pets, this is easier than others- as the number of calories your pet burns depends on their level of activity. An extremely active pet is less likely to become overweight because they burn more calories than their less active counterparts.
If your pet isn't very active, it is important that you help them adequately exercise. For dog owners, this is as simple as going out for more walks; however, cat owners face a more difficult task. Cat owners can increase exercise by encouraging play with a cat toy, such as a laser pointer. Additionally, these less active pets may also have their obesity placated with smaller portions.
4. Healthy Treats or No Treats!
In addition to controlling portions for mealtime, itís important that we regulate their treat intake. Unfortunately, we must hold our pets steadfast to their diet even in times of reward to see weight loss results. If your pet deserves a treat or needs an incentive to behave well, there are a wide variety of dietary treats available for pets trying to lose weight.
Bonies offers a low-calorie treat for dogs that also cleans teeth and gums. For cats, LeanTreats are made specifically to provide a treat that is low in fat to complement a weight loss regimen. These treats should not be given liberally, but instead use them to encourage your pet to exercise properly and maintain good health.
5. Supplement Your Efforts
There are a wide variety of supplements available that regulate your petís weight. Supplements can help pets lose weight by boosting metabolism and regulating appetite. Weight Guard Vet Capsules are one example of such a supplement. This product is scientifically formulated to reduce the strain on your petís internal organs while increasing the amount of calories they consume; it also regulates your petís blood sugar.
Other supplements offer aid in the digestive process and other nutritional benefits. Omega Alpha Nutrify is one such supplement that works to fortify pet food. This supplement can be used to ensure that pets who are less active can receive proper nutrition even while dieting. A combination of supplements with a healthy diet and exercise constitute an extremely effective weight loss regimen.
We hope these tips help you keep your pet at a healthy weight in the coming months. If you have any tips we didn't mention, or prefer other brands of weight loss foods, treats, or supplements- let us know in the comment section!