An estimated 60% of cats and 56% of dogs in the United States are overweight or obese. That’s a lot of pets at risk for weight-related diseases like chronic inflammation, diabetes, hypertension, kidney disease, arthritis, cancer … the list goes on.
How can you tell if your pet is obese?
Although there may not be consensus when defining “overweight” or “obese” pets, animal nutritionist, Dr. Richard Patton, Ph.D., says the telltale signs include:
- Your pet LOOKS overweight
- Your pet gets up slowly
- Their feet slip easily on the floor when they rise
- Your pet waddles when he/she walks
What can you do to help your pet maintain an ideal weight?
As a pet owner, you have a responsibility. No pressure, but what you feed your dog or cat directly impacts their health and happiness … for a lifetime. If you care (and we know you do), consider a raw diet that can help with weight management, reduce the risk of certain diseases, increase lifespan, and make each day better all around.
Feed with your eyes. “Your pet will talk to you. Does he look the way you want? Does he act the way you want? Then you’re feeding the right amount,” says Dr. Patton.
Now that you’ve got good nutrition in your sights, let’s talk about exercise. Select activities that are best based on the breed, age, gender and current physical ability of your pet. Walking, swimming, agility, chase and ball retrieving are all great opportunities for fitness. And, best of all, you get to enjoy the benefits of being with your fur friend too!
About Dr. Richard Patton:
Dr. Patton has over 40 years of experience in animal nutrition, working worldwide formulating diets for nearly every kind of animal ranging from aardvarks to zebras, including domestic cats and dogs. He has 25 scientific publications, two patents, authored Ruined By Excess Perfected By Lack and has written numerous articles for Dogs Naturally. Dr. Patton is well-known for his contributions to the new documentary, The Truth About Pet Cancer.