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Pudgy around the edges? How to tell if your animal is overweight

Killing them with kindness!

It is not uncommon for us to show love by showering our pets in treats and delicious human food. As much as they love eating, it can take years off their life span, put pressure on their heart, joints and overall wellbeing. In 2005, researchers from the School of Veterinary Science at the University of Sydney found that out of the 2661 dogs that they studied, 33.5% were overweight and 76% were obese!

Here is a body condition score sheet to indicate what an ideal weight is. Keep in mind the breed of the animal.

We have compiled a list of 5 things we recommend to help your animal get to their correct weight!

1. Stop free-feeding: If you leave a bowl of food out all day for your pet, it’s time to put the bowl away and set up a feeding schedule. A little something for breakfast and a little something for dinner is all an adult cat or dog really needs. . To help them shave pounds, put away your pet’s food.

2. Save treats for special occasions or training: Dishing out treats nonstop is an easy way for your pet to pile on the extra calories. Make treats a super special thing, something they either get rarely or something they earn through exercise or training.

3. No more table scraps: Feeding pets from the dinner table is a big no-no for many reasons, including weight gain. Table scraps are loaded with extra calories (and additives, preservatives, sugar and other things) that your pet doesn’t need. Select a high-quality food for your pet and stick with that. They may look super cute when they ask for a little nibble from your dinner plate, but saying “no” to the begging is the real way to show them you care.

4. Ramp up the exercise (slowly!): Add in more time every day for exercise. But, just like an out-of-shape human should avoid going overboard on the exercise when beginning a new training routine, cats and dogs need to slowly add a little more exercise a day while they build up their muscles and lose the extra weight. Too much too soon can lead to heat stroke, muscle tears or joint problems. So add just a few extra minutes of walking or playing each day so your pet can get their figure back while avoiding injuries.

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