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Posted on 06-15-2012

We all know how cute our dogs can be when they are begging for our food. Those big eyes staring up at you just on the verge of tears... how can you resist that face? Well it is easier than you think! In the USA 54% of all dogs and cats are overweight. There are serious health risks associated with obesity such as diabetes, kidney disease, heart disease, high blood pressure, osteoarthritis and a decreased life expectancy. If you think about those complications it shouldn't be too hard to resist that little face.007_3.JPG

A pet within a healthy weight range should have a thin layer of fat between the ribs and a noticeable waistline. There are some easy things to do at home to help your pet lose weight or not become overweight. Do not feed a lot of high calorie treats. Instead, feed vegetables such as baby carrots, peas, broccoli or cauliflower. Feed your pet a low, moderate or less active diet and measure out the food. If your pet is already overweight do not free feed and stick to the appropriate amount of food per day. If you need help determining the correct amount please consult with your veterinarian.

Also remember to avoid the following foods as they are unhealthy and dangerous for your pet: caffeine, chocolate, onions, garlic, grapes, raisins, apples, peaches, tomatoes, cherries, macadamia nuts, mushrooms, spicy foods and chewing gum. Also avoid giving your dog bones from chicken, turkey or fish as they can splinter and puncture the stomach or intestines.

Don't forget to keep your pet active. Excercise is key to any weight loss program. Throwing a ball or frisbee or taking a brisk walk around the block will help maintain a healthy weight or help to shed those unwanted pounds. Feel free to contact us at Eagle Animal Hospital to discuss a strategic weight management plan for your pet. We serve Chester Springs, Downingtown, Exton, Glenmoore and surrounding areas.

Written by Amy Poole, veterinary technician

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