Being a healthy weight is important for your pets overall health. Over 40% of dogs and 30% of cats in N.Z are classed as overweight.
Animals can be at risk of weight gain, it can creep up on them just like in humans. Cats and dogs can be very sneaky pretending they are hungry when they have just been fed. Your pet as it ages can be at risk of weight gain as their metabolic rate just like humans begins to slow down. They usually decrease their daily exercise levels and require less food. Certain breeds of animals are predisposed to weight gain and require their intake to be managed.
CAUSES OF OBESITY
Excess food given
Low amounts of exercise
IS YOUR PET AT RISK?
If you feel your pet is putting on weight please speak to your vet. There are many highly recommended weight management programmes available for your pet.
If you can’t feel your Pets Ribs
No Defined Waist
Are not interested in Play or exercise
Steal other pets food
Fed table scraps and treats every day
Always Hungry and will keep eating
Tire easily if they play or walk
Talk with your vet on a management plan to ensure your pet’s overall health, quality of life and life span is not affected.
Book your pet in to see your vet. Discuss with the vet the problems you are having with feeding your pet and weight gain.
Your vet will assist you to
Set Long term Weight loss goals – Pets weight loss is gradual, it takes time.
Change both your behaviour and your pets – Replace food rewards with alternative rewards like playing, patting, brushing.
Change their diet – There are many low calorie and carb foods, calorie-controlled and hunger controlling food options available. Discuss this with your vet or local pet store for their advice. Choose a small bag of food to start to ensure your pet likes the product. Always change their food gradually mixing part of the new food with their normal diet.
Feeding – Choose to feed twice a day and measure the food. Follow the instructions
Exercise – Ensure your pet plays a few times every day and with a dog is walked at least once a day. Try for 10 minutes and gradually build up the walk times.