More than half of the pets in America are overweight, and many of them are severely obese.
The extra pounds your pet is carrying can make him very sick and even shorten his life. Because of obesity, your pet may develop diabetes, arthritis and many other chronic health issues that cause pain and disease, or require taking medications. That will make your pet more uncomfortable and make it harder for you to afford his care.
It could even make it impossible for you to care for your pet, as you may need to give injections and pills regularly. Your pet may refuse medications, or you may not be able to do it.
Pet food is expensive.
You may be paying a lot of extra money to overfeed your pet, or burdening Phinney’s Friends with unnecessary purchases. Of course you don’t want your pet to lead a less healthy life.
Act now! Start a new chapter in your pet’s life!
1. Don’t let yourself be fooled by the looks
Many of us believe we know, and we actually don’t. We see so many overweight pets nowadays that we look at a healthy pet and think she is too thin. Then we look at an obese pet and think she is fine. Yes, it’s more common to see a heavy animal than a healthy one!
2. Take a close look at your pet
Now that you know you shouldn’t be fooled by what you see everyday, take a good look at your pet. You should be able to see your pet’s waist tuck in just behind the ribs, but not see the ribs easily. The following pictures show the ideal, healthy shape of a dog and a cat.
Ideal, healthy shape:
And here is how they look when they are overweight:
And here are a dog and a cat who are too thin:
3. Gently feel the side of your pet’s body
When you touch your pet, the ribs shouldn’t show a lot, but you should be able to feel them easily. That’s a normal, healthy weight. If you can’t feel the ribs easily, your pet is too heavy.
4. Check the amount you are feeding
Get the bags and cans of food you are feeding your pet and take a look at the feeding chart. Compare it to your pet’s weight.
Don’t know your pet’s weight? Call your vet clinic and find out. They always weigh your pet unless you get a house call visit.
The following charts show the recommended amount of calories to feed your pet, and the caloric content in cups or cans of common dog and cat foods.
Note: only large breed cats are healthy at higher weights, of 15 to 20 lbs.
Now, do you feel you have a better idea if your pet is a healthy weight?
If you need help, leave us a message to Phinney’s at 617.203.2053 or reach out to us online. We may be able to help you tackle this problem.