Obesity dramatically shortens your dog’s life expectancy and negatively affects his quality of life. Here’s how you can help her lose weight and regain a healthy lifestyle.
Obesity is becoming common in dogs. Studies consistently show that at least 20% of the adult dog population is overweight in industrialized countries. However, by choosing a food adapted to his energy needs, by promoting the practice of regular physical activity, and by respecting good eating behavior (no surplus or leftovers), you can help your dog to lose weight. and to recover a healthier lifestyle.
If your vet considers your dog’s weight gain to be such that he has become obese, that means there is an increased risk to his general health. Obesity puts your dog at risk for a number of serious and complex illnesses, including diabetes, cardio-respiratory problems, arthritis, and a weakened immune system. Worse yet, obesity reduces her life expectancy.
Your dog’s breed, age, genetic predispositions, sex, and lifestyle are all factors that contribute to his obesity or complicate his weight loss. You can help your dog get back to a healthy weight and keep him healthy by feeding him the right food, providing the right exercise program and lifestyle for his needs.
Establishing the right behaviors and eating habits have a huge impact on your dog’s weight loss. Respect the amounts recommended on the food bags or get help from your veterinarian to ensure effective weight loss for your dog. Be sure to follow his advice for the best possible results. In addition, do not hesitate to split your daily ration into two minimum meals rather than opting for one large meal. You will thus avoid the feelings of hunger, the energy contained in the food will be better used and the ingestion of its meals will be better regulated.
You and other family members should stand firm and resist the urge to offer him your leftovers and treats, which further encourages begging behavior in your dog. The ideal is to feed your dog at regular times, in the same bowl, in the same place, to establish a ritual. Avoid having your meals at the same times as your dog so as not to create confusion and, ideally, avoid having your meals in the same room.
Reducing the amount of food given to a dog to help it lose weight is not recommended; as this reduces the likelihood that it will receive all the nutrients it needs and may promote unwanted behaviors such as aggression or begging.
Instead, choose a food specially formulated to promote weight loss. It must contain highly digestible protein so that it receives the energy it needs, but with reduced calorie content. Dog foods formulated to limit weight gain also contain an optimal blend of fiber that helps your dog feel full without taking in unnecessary calories.
Low-carb foods can be helpful for overweight dogs with diabetes because they slow digestion and improve blood sugar control. In the case of an overweight dog with diabetes, specific low-carbohydrate veterinary foods may be recommended. They can help improve the condition of the dog under the supervision of a veterinarian.
If your dog’s health permits, take him out regularly for exercise. To get him used to it, divide his activity over the week into several short sessions, rather than one long strenuous walk or run on the weekend. If your dog finds it difficult to take long walks, swimming, in particular, can be of great benefit to him.
With just a few small changes, you can help your dog reach their ideal weight and get back to a healthy lifestyle. Start by consulting your veterinarian; he will give you advice on diet, exercise, and more.
4- Put your dog on a diet
Be careful, putting your dog on a diet doesn’t mean he needs to eat less! Just stop giving him treats and your table scraps (or limit yourself to once a day). Most importantly, let all your friends and family know about this decision. Indeed, if you are the only one around you to stop spoiling it, your dog will never succeed in losing weight!
5- Dose his daily ration
Dog owners often tend to feed more than they need. To make sure that the dose of food you are giving your dog each day is the right one, take a special measuring glass (available free of charge from pet stores or the vet) and read the information on your usual packet of kibble. (you know, the ones we never noticed).
This information will give you the exact amount of kibble you should give your dog daily, based on his weight and size.
6- check the quality of its kibble
Too fatty or too rich kibble can be the cause of obesity in dogs. It is therefore important to make sure that your dog’s diet is suitable for his needs. For this, we invite you to discover our advice to help you choose the best croquettes for your dog.
7- Make him exercise
An overweight dog needs regular physical activity to lose fat. So don’t skimp on hikes and playtime! On the other hand, be careful not to wear out your joints with too much effort from the start. The key is to take it gradually and gradually increase the intensity of the effort.
And if you also want to strengthen the relationship you have with your fur-ball, feel free to practice a dog sport such as agility.
8- Consult a veterinarian
Often, handlers do not know how much weight their dog should gain to be healthy. To be sure that your dog is not losing too much weight or gaining too much weight, it is best to consult a veterinarian. The latter will be able to give you the optimal weight of your animal on which you will base yourself for the following.
Also, the veterinarian can help you determine what actions to take to make your dog lose weight, depending on his age, breed, and state of health.