The Growing and Deadly Epidemic: K9 Obesity
There’s a new epidemic affecting more than half of the dogs living in the United States and it’s called excess weight and obesity.
The Sobering Statistics
As of 2016, an estimated 53.9% of American dogs (and 58.9% of American cats!) were considered overweight or obese. That approximately translates into 41.9 million canines and 50.5 million felines in just the United States alone! *
Even more distressing is that 84% of overweight or obese dogs are facing not only a shortened life spa, but potentially crippling health issues and complications like the ones below.
When is it “Too Much” Weight?
All mature dogs have an optimal weight for their breed. The extra weight (up to 15% over the “ideal” weight) is considered “overweight.” More than 15% over the ideal weight is considered “obese.”
Are you sure your dog is not overweight or obese? According to Petplan Insurance, 95% of owners with overweight dogs, think their dog’s weight is “normal.” Do you?
Accurately Check your Dog’s Weight
There are three accurate ways to ensure your dog’s weight is actually within the range of normal or ideal.
Are Certain Breeds Prone to Obesity?
Yes, some canine breeds do exhibit a propensity to gain (and retain) excess weight.
· Cairn Terriers
· Scottish Terriers
· Cavalier King Charles Spaniels
· Cocker Spaniels
· Basset Hounds
· Labrador Retrievers
· Golden Retrievers
· Bernese Mountain Dogs
· Saint Bernards
Maintaining a Healthy Weight:
If your dog is prone to gaining weight, below are 5 tips to help maintain their ideal weight and health.
- Feed a high-quality food or raw diet. Lower-quality commercial foods often use “fillers” of grains and grain by-products which create “carb overload” leading to unhealthy weight gain.
- Do not free-feed throughout the day. Some dogs will overeat if they have constant access to food
- Measure all food and treat portions (instead of guessing).
- Ensure they get at least 30 minutes of exercise almost every day.
- Cut back on treats; include more raw vegetables or use long-lasting chews that cannot be eaten quickly.
(Royal Dog Chews are all-natural chew treats offering a high protein content that is also low in fat. These authentic hard cheese chews are made from only 100% pure Himalayan yak and cow milk with traces of lime and salt. Royal Dog Chews are long-lasting, easy-to-digest and a healthy treat alternative for your dog.)
According to a 2016 Clinical Study by the Association of Pet Obesity Prevention (APOP).
Additional Resources & Reading