Obesity doesn’t just affect humans. The number of overweight pets has been increasing in recent years causing significant health problems.
Overweight or overweight in pets is not new but has been on the rise in recent times. Treats a little too often, too sedentary lifestyle, diet not always adapted and balanced … Our pets are also victims of the growing choice of delicacies and other tempting food products from the animal sector.
A British study reveals that 45% of dogs would afford obesity , 40% of cats and 28% of NACs (New Pets) would also be overweight. Veterinarians are alarmed about this situation which unfortunately does not improve. With obesity, the risk of cardiovascular disease and diabetes in animals has increased dramatically.
Causes of obesity in animals
Although more and more elaborate, the foods made for our furry or feathered friends do not always turn out to be of good quality. The dishes prepared for our animals often contain too much sugar, are too high in salt and fat, and behave for some too much oil. By combing through the composition of dog food made from chicken, for example, we realize that they only contain 4% poultry.
In addition, in many homes, animals have the right to share their master’s meals , which is a mistake. Even giving your pet leftovers from your dinner can sometimes be dangerous. Too high in calories and poorly adapted to your metabolism, it is better to avoid sharing a piece of steak cooked in butter or a piece of cheese.
Lack of exercise
The sedentary animals are obviously more likely to be obese than animals accustomed to vent. Animals that live in apartments are very sensitive to being overweight. Every animal needs to exercise. A dwarf rabbit, for example, will need to exercise nearly 4 hours a day compared to only 1 hour for a dog.
The lack of exercise can lead to obesity problems for the joints levels that can quickly worsen especially in older.
The risks of obesity in animals
A very fleshy or obese animal is not a sign of good health, on the contrary. As with humans, your pet’s weight should be carefully monitored to avoid any risk of overweight-related illnesses .
Obesity brings real risks to the health of the animal in addition to a daily discomfort. Being overweight can also shorten your pet’s life expectancy by up to 2 years.
The risks associated with obesity in your pet :
- Cardiovascular disease and respiratory disorders
- Problems with joints and bones
- Creation of urinary stones, genital diseases and tumors
Treating Obesity in Pets
Obesity is not an incurable problem. It is possible to make your animal lose weight while ensuring its good health. But be careful, before starting a diet, it is better to follow some advice beforehand:
Visit the vet
Each animal and each breed presents different pathologies. It is therefore important to go to your veterinarian who will tell you whether or not your animal is suffering from obesity .
Each consultation with the veterinarian begins with a weighing in order to note the body index of the animal . The veterinarian then ensures that the overweight is indeed due to an accumulation of fat mass and not due to a problem of water retention for example. The animal will also be tested to make sure it does not already suffer from diseases like diabetes.
Only your veterinarian can advise you on the diet to follow and the weight goal to be reached. A regular visit will be favorable so that he can follow the evolution of your companion and his weight.
A balanced diet
A balanced diet is often the answer to any weight problem. The food given to your pet must be safe and adapted to its calorific and energy needs .
Your veterinarian can advise you on a specific diet rich in fiber and protein . Indeed, proteins have an effect of satiety on the animal and act on the muscular mass. As for fibers, they will reduce the sensation of appetite and prevent the risk of constipation.
The candy and other little extras will be casual even if your partner calls you with gentle eyes. The “diet” croquettes that can be found in supermarkets are not recommended as part of a diet either. These do not contain essential nutrients and only have a reduced fat content.
It is also important to always have fresh water available for your pet .
Adequate diet combined with daily exercise would normally be sufficient to make your friend lose weight .
The exercises don’t have to be intense. All you have to do is get your animal to move as little as possible with a daily walk or a few moments of play. These moments will reduce the stress of the animal , entertain it but also create a close bond between you and it.
An animal that is not used to playing sports will have to slowly get used to this new change. You have to be careful not to push him too hard, to run him too long at the risk of seeing him get tired for nothing. A simple 20-30 minute walk is enough for a dog, or you can use balls to get them to play. For cats, you can trick them and have them play for a few minutes several times a day with suitable toys or make them yourself. For NACs, it is important to offer them at least one wheel. The rabbits can be released into a room to stretch their legs .
A diet must be strict and followed to the letter. Your pet needs you to solve the obesity problem. Remember, your pet’s weight loss is all up to you!