The obesity problem in America today isn’t just about people. Our dogs can have the same problem. We snack and then share with our dog. So you stop and think; does your dog need to lose weight?
THE OBESITY PROBLEM IS NATIONWIDE
At least 58 percent of pets in the United States are considered obese. All pets need exercise. Dogs need a total of 30 minutes per day of activity. You can help your dog by taking him for a walk or playing ball in the yard. Play periods can be broken into intervals throughout the day. My lab likes to help me when I’m working in the yard. She runs throughout the yard chasing birds and squirrels.
Does your dog need to lose weight? There are a few things you can do to tell if your dog is obese. Your dog’s stomach should not hang down or touch the floor. Look down at your dog when it is standing. It should have somewhat of an hourglass shape. You should also be able to easily feel it’s ribs.
Once you’ve realized that your dog is obese, take your dog to the vet. He may have an issue with his thyroid. If so that may be part of the weight problem. My lab takes thyroid tabs twice daily.
CERTAIN FOODS WE EAT CAN BE GIVEN TO OUR DOGS
You can actually help your dog by giving him vegetables. Dogs like carrots, broccoli, green beans, and apples. My Sweet Pea loves tomatoes and raw zucchini! These are good for treats (in small amounts) or to satisfy your begging dog when you are eating dinner. Yogurt also makes a nice treat. We started giving our dogs yogurt years ago for digestion issues. If you want to give some people food to your dog, please first check to be sure it is safe. Grapes, raisins, garlic, leeks, and onions are toxic to pets. Also please do not give anything with artificial sweetener to your pet. Many of these sweeteners can be deadly for pets.
Commercial dog biscuits can be loaded with fat. Give only a few of these to your dog at a time. You can alternate the biscuits with bites of apple or carrot. Or better yet, make the biscuits yourself to ensure they are healthy and nutritious.
HEALTHY EATING IS THE KEY
It’s best to start by giving your pet a healthy commercial food. Grain free with real meats (not by products) and vegetables are best for your dog. Brands don’t really matter just read the ingredients label. You can also supplement part of their canned food with pumpkin. For dogs use ½ cup of pumpkin with ½ cup of dog food. Dogs love pumpkin. Pumpkin can also be used to deal with constipation issues. Stop giving your dog pumpkin if he or she starts having loose stools.
Does your dog need to lose weight? There are many steps that we can take to help our pets get healthy again. Weight loss should be gradual. Dogs can lose one to two pounds per month. One trick you can use is to withhold a small part of your dog’s dinner and give it to them at bedtime. This way they don’t go to sleep on an empty stomach.
HUNGER PANGS HIT OUR DOGS TOO
Increasing the percentage of lean protein in your dog’s diet can help keep them satisfied while losing the weight. Then you just need to maintain that healthy routine. It is important to keep our pets healthy and happy. They live much longer which is a huge gift to them not to mention to us.