Obesity in dogs: why is it dangerous?
Overweight is a common problem with dogs kept in the apartment. And it is reflected not only in appearance, but also in the state of health and well-being of the pet. How to determine in a timely manner that the dog began to gain weight, and what exactly is obesity dangerous for the body?
Obesity in Dogs: Causes
Why do dogs gain weight? The reasons can be serious diseases that provoke metabolic disorders, or a genetic predisposition – but these are isolated cases. Most often, a sedentary lifestyle and an unbalanced diet lead to obesity, which is common with apartment maintenance. Sterilized dogs also fall into the risk group: due to changes in the hormonal background, they become more prone to weight gain. In addition, some breeds are naturally prone to fullness. Probably, on the dog’s grounds you have at least once seen a “tidy” Labrador or a Welsh Corgi.
Until a certain point, the rounded contours of the pet may seem funny, but being overweight is always an additional burden on the body. If measures are not taken in a timely manner, the “insignificant” excess weight will turn into obesity – an absolutely real problem, which leaves an imprint on the dog’s quality of life. Obesity provokes the development of serious diseases, many of which (for example, heart failure and diabetes) are irreversible. Now add to this the problems with the joints and the spine, from which almost all overweight animals suffer! Obviously, the health of the pet is not worth the risk, and overweight can and should be fought.
Obesity in Dogs: Symptoms
How to determine if the weight of the pet is normal? First of all, check out the breed standard. It indicates the optimal range of weight and height at the withers, and normally these indicators are maintained.
If there is no help on the standard at hand or a mixed-breed dog, use other tricks. To begin with, feel the ribs from the pet. With normal weight, you can do it easily. If the ribs are not palpable, most likely the dog is overweight.
And one more way. Examine the dog when it is lying on its side. Normally, the ribs will stand out and protrude above the level of the abdomen. With obesity, the ribs do not stand out and the transition from the chest to the abdomen is almost imperceptible. Also, in an overweight dog, it is difficult to track the movement of the chest during inhalation and exhalation.
Other symptoms of obesity include a waddling gait (in the absence of pregnancy), shortness of breath, and fatigue.
Obesity in a dog: what to do?
An overweight dog must first be taken to an appointment with a veterinarian. He will examine her, if necessary, conduct tests, prescribe a special diet and give recommendations on physical activity.
Properly selected diet is a key component of the fight against excess weight. The action of diets for dogs with overweight (for example, Monge Vetsolution Obesity) is aimed at improving metabolism, weight loss, maintaining optimal physical shape and strengthening immunity. To achieve the result, it is very important to strictly follow the recommendations of the veterinarian and observe the norm of feeding. Additional feeding and especially “delicacies” from the table are unacceptable in the diet!
The intensity of physical activity for each dog is individual. For example, the life of a border collie is unthinkable without jogging, jumping and passing obstacles, and jumping from high surfaces is contraindicated for dachshunds. The veterinarian will tell you how intense the load should be and what exercises will be useful specifically for your dog. But one rule applies to everyone: physical activity should be increased gradually. Soberly assess the capabilities and health status of your dog.