Many of our animal companions are overweight—in fact, nearly half of all domesticated dogs and cats could stand to shed a few pounds. If your pet is looking a little pudgy around the edges, it’s time to act. Learn more here from a Hudson Valley, NY vet.
First, set up an appointment at your veterinarian’s office to have your pet examined. Your vet will be able to tell you whether or not your pet is actually overweight. If they are, you’ll work together to develop a tailored weight-loss plan for your pet so that they can slim down safely; it’s very dangerous for a pet to lose too much weight too quickly!
Many times, all that a pet needs to start shedding those excess pounds is a change in serving size. Many pets are overfed, and it’s one of the leading causes of obesity amongst our animal friends. Free-feeding is especially problematic; that means leaving food out for your pet at all times, allowing them to chow down whenever they please. Instead, ask your vet about a measured portion size and scheduled mealtimes, and remove uneaten food after about 20 minutes or so.
Sometimes, pets don’t receive a nutritious diet and it contributes to their unhealthy weight gain. Ask your vet if your pet’s diet is up to snuff—your companion needs a high-quality food that suits their age, size, and breed, not a “budget” diet with a lot of empty calories. It may be time to consider upgrading your pet’s diet choice!
No diet plan is complete without regular exercise. Pudgy pets will need to get moving every day, for at least a few minutes at a time multiple times per day. Use fun toys to entice your pet into playtime, or go for brisk walks around your neighborhood. Regular physical activity is the only way for your pet to burn off those excess calories, helping them slim down and stay that way!
Do you find that you’re constantly slipping your pet treats for no real reason? Do you or family members have a bad habit of giving your pet a lot of fatty table scraps? Nip this behavior in the bud! Do your best to only use treats as rewards for good behavior or for training purposes.
Call your Hudson Valley, NY vet clinic to learn more.