Obesity in Dogs

Obesity is one of the most common health problems in our canine friends. By some estimates, over half of our canine buddies are obese! In this article from your local Beaverton vet, you’ll read about obesity in dogs.

Causes of Obesity

As one might expect, improper diet and a lack of exercise are the two largest contributing factors to canine obesity. Occasionally, a medical problem, such as hypothyroidism, can cause a dog to become obese. Genetics can also play a role. Some dogs tend to be a bit more prone to putting on extra pounds than others are. Beagles, Basset Hounds, Pugs, and Labrador Retrievers are a few breeds that tend to carry extra weight.

Risks of Obesity

While we’ll admit that chubby dogs look adorable, the health risks of obesity are anything but cute. Overweight dogs are at a much greater risk of developing cardiac problems, diabetes, high blood pressure, osteoarthritis, and respiratory issues than pooches at a healthy weight. Obesity can also contribute to cancer, and can even shorten Fido’s lifespan!

Preventing Obesity

To keep your furry pal at a healthy weight, ask your vet to recommend a dietary plan for him, and stick to it. Be mindful of portion control, as it’s very easy to overfeed Fido simply by pouring a little too much kibble into his dish. You’ll also want to make sure that your pooch gets plenty of exercise. In winter, use a laser pointer or a game of fetch to get your canine buddy off the couch. Last but not least, be careful not to overdo it with treats and snacks. All those tidbits definitely add up!

Watching Fido’s Waistline

Keep a close eye on your furry pal’s shape. If your pup looks a bit pudgy, work with your vet to develop a diet and exercise program that is both safe and effective. It’s much easier and safer to make minor adjustments early on than to wait until Fido is truly overweight and have to make drastic changes. Never put your dog on a crash diet, as this is very dangerous for his health!

Do you have any questions about your dog’s care or behavior? Please contact us any time! As your local Beaverton veterinary clinic, we are always happy to help with all of your pet care needs.

To read more articles about pet care, please visit our website here.

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