By Colleen White aplaceofgracepuppies.com
Does your dog still act hungry after he's done eating? Guess what? It doesn't mean he's still
hungry! Some dogs don't seem to have that "switch" that tells them they are satisfied or
full, and it can be a very dangerous thing! No, a dog won't "eat himself to death," in the
immediate sense, but given the opportunity, a dog could very well have a shortened lifespan
due to obesity! According to the American Kennel Club, over 50% of dogs in the US are
overweight. That's a staggering number considering there are approximately 77 million pet
dogs in American homes!
Let's take a look at what the AKC says are some of the potential consequences of
overfeeding your dog:
1. They will have a shorter life expectancy.
2. They have a greater risk of osteoarthritis.
3. They have a higher risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
4. They have a higher risk of high blood pressure and heart
5. They have a higher risk of kidney disease.
6. They have a greater risk of developing cancer.
7. They will have a diminished quality of life.
Now let's take a look at what you can do to keep your dog at a healthy weight:
1. Always measure your dog's food according to his weight. Not all “cups” are created equal! A solo cup is NOT 8 ounces! When using a “scoop” from a pet store, make sure to check the unit of measure!
2. Give fewer treats throughout the day, and do not feed your dog table scraps! Some human food can even be toxic to dogs, so dump those scraps in the trash!
3. Use small, low calorie “treats” such as frozen peas or blueberries. Carrots, watermelon and apples also make great low calorie treats for your dog. Don’t give Fido celery though! The “strings” can cause complications while going through their systems…
4. Exercise your dog daily, whether it’s a walk around the neighborhood or fetch in the yard! Appropriate exercise is important not only for their physical development, but also for their emotional well being!
5. Always make sure your dog has access to fresh water! I can’t emphasize that enough!! Just like humans, a dog’s make up is mostly water! If your dog has dark yellow urine, they aren’t drinking enough! A hint that your dog has, or is developing diabetes? Drinking excessive amounts of water and frequent urination!
The next time Fido is begging at the table or is looking for more food after their meal, the most loving thing you can do for him is pet on him and take him out for a walk!! Every dog deserves to live it’s healthiest, happiest life!