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Creating Greater Awareness for Pet Obesity

Posted by SusanStokes on October 15, 2021

Did you know that recent statistics show that obesity is diagnosed in an estimated 56% of dogs in the United States and is the most common medical disorder in veterinary practice? Pet obesity is such an important threat to a pet's health and well-being that October 13th is designated as National Pet Obesity Awareness Day.

In a recent press release, Wild Earth's CEO, Dr. Ryan Bethencourt, shared the risks of pet obesity and more.

Risks of Pet Obesity
From chronic inflammation, respiratory disorders, arthritis, cancer, diabetes, and reduced life expectancy and quality of life, there are several harmful effects of obesity in pets. In fact, in a 1999 longevity study conducted on dogs, researchers found dogs fed 25% fewer calories than average lived about two years longer. 

How to Determine if Your Pet is Overweight
It can be hard to tell if your pet is a healthy weight because people rarely know what to watch for. Did you know that the ribs of your dog should be easily felt with only about a ½ inch cover and that a lack of abdominal tuck or obvious waist can be a clear indication of an overweight dog? Be sure to watch for these signs, paired with low energy levels and trouble breathing to determine if your pet falls into this category. 

There is no perfect one-size-fits-all solution for ensuring your dog is a healthy weight, but it is important to take the first steps and consult with a vet to determine a feeding plan that’s right for your pet. 

Staying active and increasing walk and play time is great for your pet and yourself. Exercise and outdoor time is crucial for controlling a dog’s weight and simply incorporating regular exercise into their daily routine can improve energy levels and weight. Try taking longer, more frequent walks, socializing at the local dog park, or tossing a Frisbee around in the backyard.

Recommended Reading: Custom Weight Loss Program for Dogs