According to a 2009 study published by the Association for Pet Obesity
Prevention, 34 million dogs and 54 million cats are classified as
overweight. Sadly, these staggering numbers continue to rise. Just like
in humans, obesity is now the biggest health threat to pets in the U.S.
Excess weight lowers metabolism, increases appetite and can worsen other
medical conditions, such as arthritis and respiratory problems.
If your pet needs surgery, extra fat can make it more difficult for a surgeon
to operate and increase the chances of complications with anesthesia. With
nearly half the nation’s pet population afflicted with weight issues, chances
are you or someone you know has a pet that is affected. Here are six tips
to help your pet shed unwanted pounds and keep the weight off for good.
1. Increased Awareness
There are two main causes of obesity in pets: too
many calories and too little exercise. Secondary factors can also come into
play, such as genetic factors of a given breed or the sex of the animal.
A quick online search will reveal whether or not your breed is prone to
weight gain. And be aware that neutered, middle-aged and female pets are
more likely to have weight issues. More...