Have you let your pup get a little too chubby? You're not alone. More than 50% of dogs are reported to be overweight or obese. That's a lot of pups!
There's still time to turn things around. If your dog is starting to look a bit too heavy, speak with your vet and follow these six tips to help them get back in shape.
1. Feed Your Dog a Balanced Diet
Pet food manufacturers in Canada must meet standards dictated by the American Association of Feed Control Officials (AAFCO) to ensure diets are complete and balanced. Speak with your vet about calculating the calories your dog needs to eat per day to lose weight or maintain a healthy weight for their breed and age.
2. Make Sure Your Dog Gets Exercise
Regular exercise is essential for any pup's fitness routine. Depending on your pup's age and breed, you should aim for at least 30 minutes of physical activity each day.
You can take your pup on walks or play in the backyard. Swimming is also an excellent form of exercise for dog health if the dog is comfortable with it.
3. Monitor Your Dog's Weight
Keep an eye on your pup's weight to ensure they stay in shape. Aim for a healthy weight range appropriate for your pup's size and breed.
Talk to your vet immediately if you notice any sudden weight fluctuations.
4. Don't Feed Your Dog Table Scraps
Table scraps are typically unhealthy and can lead to weight gain. Human food can not only contain ingredients that are toxic to your dog, but also typically have high levels of sodium and fat which can lead to serious medical conditions.
Remember, your pup's diet should be tailored specifically for them and the food they need to stay in shape, so don’t give in to their begging at the table!
5. Reduce the Number of Treats They Get Each Day
Remember that treats should be given sparingly. If you notice your pup is getting a bit too chubby, cut back on the treats and focus on giving them healthy snacks instead. Look for treats with a lower calorie count or find a healthy alternative, such as bananas, apples, or carrots.
6. Talk to Your Vet About Weight Management Options for Your Pup
Talk to your veterinarian about weight management options if you're having trouble getting your pup back into shape.
We can provide tailored advice and recommendations for helping your pup reach the goal weight depending on the dog's age, breed, and mobility. We can also determine if their weight gain is symptomatic of an underlying health problem such as Cushing’s disease or hyperthyroidism.
Get Your Dog Back in Shape! Book a Check Up with Amherst Veterinary Hospital
Getting your dog back in shape doesn't have to be hard work. You can help get your pup back on track with the right diet and exercise plan.
Amherst Veterinary Hospital has a dedicated staff of caring and knowledgeable professionals specializing in pet health and wellness. If you're a pet owner looking for professional help, schedule an appointment in Scarborough today!