Like we already mentioned before, according to the Association for Pet Obesity Prevention almost 53% of the dogs and 55% of the cats in the US are overweight. Almost half of these cases are even tending towards obesity.
If we don’t do something about his real quick, more and more pets will become victim of overweight and perhaps even obesity. As we all know, overly obese animals (and humans) have a higher chance of getting arthritis and heart deceases, which can in some cases unfortunately, result in death.
But what can you do to prevent your cat or dog from becoming obese? The first thing you need to know is whether your cat or dog is actually overweight. You can often check this yourself fairly easily. In normal sized cats and dogs you should be able to feel the rib-cage, spine and muscle development all along the bodily frame. If you can’t feel your pet’s rib-cage or spine then chances are high that your pup or kitten is heading into the wrong direction.
If you’re not sure whether you cat or dog is in the danger zone you should always contact your local vet. They can tell you exactly in what condition your pet is and if they’re heading towards obesity any time soon.
There could be a couple of reasons for pet obesity. First of all you should always ask a vet if your cat or dog doesn’t have an underlying disease that could cause them to be overweight.
If you pet is not suffering from diseases like hypothyroidism or Cushing’s disease then they’re most likely being overfed and they probably don’t get enough exercise as well. The combination of these two aspects (being overfed and not getting enough exercise) can ultimately lead to overweight and even obesity.
So what can you do to prevent this? The answer is rather simple. Give your dog and/or cat a balanced diet and be sure to let them exercise more often. Of course, this is easier said than done, but the basic principles for keeping your pet in a good shape are rather simple.
Taking your dog for a walk every now and then is a good idea. Many dogs are happy when they can run around outside in the open fields. However, be sure to not strain your dog too much and let them rest regularly.
Some people can’t find the time or place to take their dogs outside. Don’t worry because there are lots of methods to train your dog inside your house. (this mostly applies for cats as well) For instance you can let your dog walk up and down the stairs. Just let them follow you while you walk the stairs a couple of times a day. Another good (and fun) method is to use a laser pointer. Many pets are obsessed with catching the little red dot and you can use this in their advantage. Create a small obstacle course and let your cat or dog follow the laser pointer. Just be sure to let them rest regularly and avoid harmful obstacles.