Weight management for pets is as critical as it is for humans. Pets become obese with the changing lifestyles and when they have consumed body fat that is over and above what is required for their minimum functioning. If not taken care of at the initial stage obesity in cats and dogs can increase the risk of other health conditions such as cardio-respiratory issues, diabetes, skin disorders, and joint disease.
Studies show that more than 50 percent of pets are overweight. In most cases, pet owners do not even realize that their pets have a weight problem.
Reasons Why The Pet Gets Overweight
There is a number of reasons for a dog or cat to become overweight. One of the main reasons is improper diet. One must ensure the pet’s health by providing the right portions of food. The owner must resist the urge to offer more food even when your pet sniffles.
When it comes to diet, make sure that the content of pets’ food is right. Always feed your pet with the right amount. High-calorie treats play a bigger role in the rise in pet obesity. If possible, try to avoid free-feeding dry food, since it is unhealthy but also self-defeating for most pets.
The other reason that causes obesity in pets is lack of exercise. If the pet is not moving around a lot, you can feed it with a specially formulated weight-loss diet. These products provide a reasonable food volume and help in balanced food intake.
Health Risks Of An Obese Pet
- Decreased life expectancy.
- High blood pressure.
- Many forms of cancer.
- Kidney disease.
- Heart and respiratory disease.
Components Of Weight-Loss Diet
Feed the pet food which is high in protein content. This will diet help in reducing the fat in the pet’s body and ensuring there is no muscle loss. This also provides enough amino acids that are required to maintain the muscle tissue and preserve the muscle mass.
As mentioned, try to provide calories through protein rather than carbohydrates. Feeding the pet foods rich in protein gives a feeling of fullness after each meal. This means that the pet will feed fewer times a day.
Obesity can affect joint health and that is why owners should supplement the pet’s weight-loss diets with nutrients such as omega3 fatty acids, glucosamine, and chondroitin. These nutrients help support a healthy diet.
In addition, ensure that the treats you feed your pet have low-fat content. Always check for the calories in each portion of food. Daily caloric needs include 1,200 calories for 50 pounds dog, 300 calories for a 10-pound dog, and similarly 275 calories for a 10-pound cat. Be careful about how many calories you feed the pet since fat is the most energy-dense nutrient.
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