Obesity in Dogs: Causes of Animal Obesity, & Prevention
Animals are Not Just Four-legged People
Since they cannot tell us if they don't feel well, they require our diligent attention in the area of health care. They are dependent on us humans to provide any such care they receive. Health issues that plague us often plague our pets as well. Today, national studies indicate that we both likely suffer from obesity and its related effects.
Stop Showing Your Love for Your Pet with Food Treats
Your dog loves nothing more than your love and attention -- when you want to reward your pet, do so with lots of praise and petting instead of a biscuit. If you have been using food rewards until now, except that it will take a bit for your pet to adjust to strokes and love instead, but ultimately the animal will be just as happy, if not more so.
Just as for the overweight human population, some dogs seem more prone to weight problems than others. Some species with this predisposition are Basset Hounds, Beagles, and Cocker Spaniels. But remember, just like people, any dog can gain weight if it is overfed and under-exercised.
Before assuming that your heavy dog simply needs to eat a diet dog food formula that restricts calories, arrange for a veterinary check-up. There could be a medical problem causing weight gain, and many such conditions can be cured or corrected with treatment. Your dog could be suffering from Cushing's Disease or hypothyroidism, for example.
After these issues have been evaluated, then it is time to recognize that your 'fluffy' dog has a legitimate weight problem. Now what? The most important steps to prevent or cure obesity are few, but they have proven positive results. Assess your dog's present eating habits. They can only eat what you give them. Cut down what you feed them daily by one fourth, or try reduced-calorie dog food.
Never let a dog graze at will. Restrict treats and eliminate table food. Put this together with a rigid exercise schedule of walking or vigorous play several times a day and your dog will lose weight. And you might drop a pound or two as well! Above all else, follow your vet's instructions completely, as he knows your dog's health best.