Every pet owner should be aware of this statistic: 51% of dogs are overweight. Pet obesity is a real issue and can cause serious health and quality of life problems for your pet.
Having an overweight dog means that your dog is less likely to live as long as a healthy pet. An overweight cat is more likely to suffer from diseases, injuries, and other ailments. Your pet also won't be able to do all the things it was able to do at a healthy weight.
The best way to solve your pet's weight problem is to nip it in the bud. The moment that you notice that your pet is overweight, you should speak with your vet, take steps to cut down its food intake, and increase its physical activity.
In today’s article, you'll find our list of the top five warning signs that you're dealing with pet obesity.
1. You Can't Feel Your Pets Ribs through Their Fur
If you have a healthy pet, you should be able to easily feel its rib bones through its skin when you're petting the pet. Any time you notice that you can't feel your pet's ribs feel around to see if the pet has a layer of fat over its ribs.
This is a sure sign that you need to start giving your dog smaller amounts of food.
2. You Don't See Your Pet’s Waistline
When you look at your dog’s silhouette, you should see its torso go up around its back legs.
If your pet doesn't have a curve in their torse near their back legs, it could be an early sign of pet obesity. Paying close attention to your pet in this way will help you catch pet obesity before it results in an injury. Refer to this helpful obesity chart if you’re unsure.
3. You Have to Change Out Your Pets Collar
Pay close attention to your pet's collar whenever you take it on or off when taking your dog for a walk. If it starts to seem a little tighter than usual, your dog could be building up fat in its neck area.
If it gets to the point where you have to get your dog a bigger collar, you should contact your vet to discuss a weight loss plan and check for any underlying health issues which could be causing unexplained weight gain.
4. You Can Hear Your Pets Breathing
Dogs may experience laboured breathing when they put on weight. Since pets are smaller than humans, even a little bit of weight can put a real strain on their bodies. Weight gain and laboured breathing is a major causes for concern. This could indicate heart problems, laryngeal collapse and other serious risks. If your dog is showing signs of laboured breathing or unexplained panting, speak with your vet as soon as possible.
5. Your Dog Doesn't Have as Much Energy as It Used To
One of the sure signs that you might be dealing with pet obesity is when your pet stops acting like its usual self. Weight gain can put pressure on their joints, and they might be experiencing pain or arthritis.
An obese dog may not want to go for long walks or have much energy to play with their toys or people. If you start to notice your pet having a real lack of energy, get in touch with your veterinarian to talk about how to control your pet's weight.
Is Your Pet Obese? Call Amherst Veterinary Hospital in Scarborough for a Thorough Check-up and Weight Loss Plan
Watch for these warning signs of pet obesity and address them before it turns into a more significant issue. The sooner you can react and take measures to help your pet lose weight, the lower your pet's risk of disease or injury. Don't hesitate to contact the pet health experts at Amherst Veterinary Hospital. We'll help you get your pet back on track to living a long, happy, healthy life!