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Pet Obesity Awareness Day

October 10th is Pet Obesity Awareness Day! Over half of our furry friends are overweight or obese. Many people like to pamper their pets by giving them yummy treats. However, overindulging your pet really isn’t the best way to spoil them. Obesity is just as dangerous for animals as it is for people! A Jacksonville, FL vet discusses pet obesity below.

Dangers

Those extra pounds can create some very serious health risks for pets. Heart disease, diabetes, liver and kidney issues, respiratory problems, and bone/joint disorders are all more prevalent in chubby pets. Obesity can also increase your furry companion’s chances of having trouble reproducing, and increases the odds of them developing complications after surgery or anesthesia. Overweight pets are also at higher risk of developing certain types of cancer, and have lower life expectancy.

Is Your Pet Obese?

With some pets, it can be pretty obvious if they are getting, well, rather pudgy. However, in other cases, it isn’t always easy to tell. Here’s a quick test: try to feel your four-legged friend’s ribs. If you can’t feel them at all, or can barely feel them under a layer of fat and muscle, there’s a good chance that you have a furry little butterball on your hands.

Food And Nutrition

As one might expect, diet plays a huge role in your pet’s weight. Portion control is very important here. Even eating ten calories too much every day can cause your furry buddy to gain a pound a year. Be sure to pick a good quality food. Many low-quality brands contain lots of fillers, which are high in carbs. Treats are another thing to consider. It’s fine to offer your pet a special snack now and then, but you really aren’t doing your dog or cat any favors by overfeeding them. Ask your vet for specific nutritional advice.

Exercise And Activity

Keeping your furry pal active is very important! Dogs all have unique exercise needs, but most of our canine pals need at least a daily walk. As for Fluffy, keep her moving by taking time to play with her daily. Even a few minutes of chasing that little red dot will be beneficial. It will also help to provide her with furniture that encourages her to climb and jump.

Do you have questions about your pet’s diet? Contact us, your Jacksonville, FL vet clinic, anytime!

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