Flabby Tabby or Plump Pup

Fat is a necessary part of your pet’s diet and should NOT be eliminated. Reducing the portion size should suffice in shedding the extra pounds…along with exercise.

Flabby Tabby

Flabby Tabby

Are your pets overweight? Do you have a flabby tabby or a plump pup? Try this easy test. Have your pet stand facing you. Place your hands on either side of your pet and slide your palms from the front of your pet to the back. Do you feel their ribs? If not, you pet may be overweight. Obesity can be a symptom of an underlying medical condition such as diabetes, high blood pressure, hypothyroidism and arthritis. Always check with your veterinarian before starting any diet or exercise program.

When given the green light to slim down your pet, use your veterinarian’s scale to get an accurate starting weight on your pet. Begin by gradually reducing the quantity of food you serve your pet each day. If your cat or dog catches on to the smaller portions, you can divide the smaller portion into more frequent feedings. Instead of your pet consuming an entire day worth of calories in one or two meals; separate the feedings into three or four separate feedings. This will also help reduce the hunger pangs your pet may experience while dieting.

Next, cut out the snacks, table food and treats. If you must give your pet goodies, try carrots or unbuttered and unsalted popcorn. There are some reduced calorie snacks out there, but most load up on carbohydrates. In the long run, the higher carbohydrates will cause your pet to gain weight. Fat is a necessary part of your pet’s diet and should NOT be eliminated. Reducing the portion size should suffice in shedding the extra pounds…along with exercise.

You should work up to two twenty minute walks per day. Start slow, only around the block and progressively build up as your pet adjusts. Walking your cat may not be a viable option, though some cats do very well on a leash. Instead, increase your cats active play time. Most cats love to chase things. Any cat toy that simulates a fluttering creature should captivate their attention. Catnip may help stimulate some cats into a more playful mood. The idea is to get your pet more physically active.

If your pet acts hungry or begs for food, use this as a signal to play or go for a walk. Discuss the benefits of slimming down with your pet, after all pets love to be talked to. At the end of two weeks, reweigh your pet or do the rib test again with your palms. If you do not notice any changes, reduce the amount of food again and retest in another two weeks. Usually though, these fairly simple changes in your routine are enough to get your pet and you on the right track to a healthier lifestyle.

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3 Comments

  1. Kay

    This is an important article for anyone who has a pet. I had a wonderful siamese cat that I indulged with table scraps and ice cream. At age twelve, although she didn't look overweight, ahe developed diabetes. For the next 5 years, we had to inject her 2X daily with expensive insulin.
    Although the shots were easy to give, it meant that we had to have special cat sitters or board her if we wanted to leave town for even a night.
    Keep your pets healthy, so you don't have to go through this!

  2. Kay

    This is an important article for anyone who has a pet. I had a wonderful siamese cat that I indulged with table scraps and ice cream. At age twelve, although she didn't look overweight, ahe developed diabetes. For the next 5 years, we had to inject her 2X daily with expensive insulin.
    Although the shots were easy to give, it meant that we had to have special cat sitters or board her if we wanted to leave town for even a night.
    Keep your pets healthy, so you don't have to go through this!

  3. Pingback: National Pet Obesity Day

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