Is my dog overweight?

If you are wondering if your dog is overweight, the most likely answer is YES! Most dogs in the US are overweight. There are a few easy ways to tell if your dog is overweight. You can look at them from the side and you should see a nice tucked abdomen after their ribs. You should also be able to easily feel their ribs without having to push through a layer of fat.

What to do if my dog is overweight?

These are 5 common things that you can do at home to help your dog lose weight

  1. Take them on a walk: Exercise is the best thing that you can do to help your overweight dog. If they are not used to going for a walk, it is best to start off with a very short distance at a very slow pace. Each day slowly increase the distance and the pace in which you are walking. Most dogs need about 30 to 45 minutes of exercise each day
  2. Decrease what you are feeding them: Most people, including myself, over feed our pets. It is best to get a measuring cup and measure out the exact amount that you have been feeding your dog. Decrease this by 10% to 20%
  3. Cut out all treats: Treats are just added calories for your dog. While some treats are also supplements for your dog, if your dog is taking a supplement you will want to decrease the amount of food to account for the calories in these treats.
  4. Cut out all human foods: Human food is not good for your dog at all. Just a small amount of these foods can cause your dog to become overweight. If you are having to give your dog a few bites of human food to entice them to eat, make sure that it is low fat such as green beans or plain cheerio’s.
  5. Switch to a weight loss diet: Some pet food companies make a weight management or weight loss dog food. These diets are higher in fiber and lower in fat to help your dog feel full without all the added calories. Switching their diets can help make them lose weight too.

Your dog being overweight can lead to many health issues such as joint pain, heart disease and kidney issues. By keeping your dog at a healthy weight, you are ensuring that they are healthy and happy for many years.

If you have any questions on your dog’s weight and need specialized advice on things that you can do to help your dog lose weight, please reach out to one of our vets.

Reach out and chat with one of our licensed Vets on PetMyPal’s Vet Chat. It is affordable, easy to use and above all you will have peace of mind that your pet will be taken care of.  Happy pet parenting!

Dr. Sara Ochoa, DVM
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