Addressing Obesity in Dogs: A Guide

Dogs weighing 10% above their ideal body weight are considered overweight, and 20% more are considered obese.


Obesity can lead to arthritis, pancreatitis, kidney disease, increased risk of cardiovascular disease, abnormal insulin response, and decreased quality of life.


Signs of obesity include weight gain, less energy, decreased exercise tolerance, a tighter collar or harness, and inability to feel the ribs or see a waistline.


Obesity can be caused by overfeeding, inadequate exercise, medical conditions like hypothyroidism, and certain dog breeds are more predisposed to obesity.


Veterinarians diagnose obesity through weight checks, body condition scoring, and lab work to check for underlying conditions contributing to weight gain.


Treatment involves exercise and dietary changes. Depending on the severity of obesity, exercise may need to be increased gradually.


Once your dog has reached their ideal weight, transition to a maintenance diet, continue regular exercise, and limit extra treats and snacks.


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