Americans are overweight, and so are our pets. It’s been estimated that 40% of our dogs are obese. If your pet doesn’t have a medical problem, the reason he is overweight is lack of exercise and too much food.
Most store bought dog food is filled with sugar, salt, chemicals and empty calories. Commercial pet food is made with artificial flavors to entice your dog to overheat.
Dogs become addicted to the sugary, salty, artificially flavored junk. The dog owner says it’s the only kind of dog food my dog will eat. We keep buying it and our dogs become obese and nutritionally deficient.
Your dog is obese if he weighs 30% more than the standard for his breed. If you can’t tell by looking that your pet is overweight, ask your vet. Your pet’s abdomen shouldn’t sag. You should be able to feel each rib.
If your pet is overweight, you need to take charge of his diet and exercise routine. Cut calories by feeding him less food. Or, start him on a low calorie diet. Increase his exercise by ten minutes each day. Your dog needs at least thirty minutes of exercise a day.
For humans and pets, it is always easier to not gain the weight in the first place than to take it off later. Keep a constant watch for weight gain in your dog as most of the time it is gradual and goes unnoticed for some time.
You, as a dog owner or dog guardian, need to be in charge of your dog’s lifestyle. It is up to you to feed him appropriately and exercise him and keep him in good health. The next few blog entries will include what to feed your pet and what to avoid in commercial dog food and what supplements are needed to keep your dog healthy.