Dogs carrying extra pounds place extra demands on virtually all the organs of their bodies.
Risks that overweight dogs face:
Damage to joints, bones, and ligaments - Serious joint complications from damage caused when the joints carry excess weight including cruciate tears and arthritis.
Diabetes mellitus - Fat hinders the body from being able to respond to insulin.
Heart disease and increased blood pressure - An increased workload pumping additional blood to excess tissues can lead to congestive heart failure.
Difficulty breathing - Additional fat in the chest and abdomen restricts the expansion of the lungs. Increased quantity of tissue puts an increased demand on the lungs to supply oxygen.
Decreased stamina - Carrying all that extra weight around takes a lot more work, placing strain on the heart, muscles, and respiratory system.
Decreased liver function - An increased amount of fat building up in the liver decreases its function.
Increased surgical and anaesthetic risk - Take longer to come out of anaesthesia. Increased fat in the tissues makes it harder to find or get at what you are looking for in the body, lengthening the procedure and hence the risk.
Digestive disorders - Increased risk of constipation.
Decreased immune function - Lowered resistance to viral and bacterial infections.
Skin and hair coat problems - The skin forms more and different types of oils, the skin may fold in on itself creating pockets, which are ideal for the accumulation of oils and the development of infections.
Decreased quality and length of life - The overall health, ability to play, even to breathe, are diminished in overweight dogs. They often become more irritable due to being hot, in pain, or simply uncomfortable and die at a younger age.
Is your dog’s weight healthy? Watch this video & find out.
Now you know the risks, if your dog is a bit pudgy, don’t despair, as we are here to help you.
Exercise is a must! Be consistent and do it daily.
Fast weight loss can be dangerous so aim to lose no more than 1-2% of their body weight per week. Swap to a satiety diet which provides safe weight loss and reduces begging behaviour.
Take any treats from their daily food allowance.
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