Preventing Pet Obesity: 4 Pet Wellness Care Tips
Pet obesity is a growing problem amongst pets across the United States, including right here in Lakewood. While a few extra pounds may not seem like much, for some pets, however, just one or two extra pounds can have a serious effect on a pet’s health. Pets that are overweight or obese are at increased risk for a host of health problems, including heart disease, diabetes, and fatty liver disease.
Pet nutrition is an important part of pet wellness care. Below, our Lakewood veterinarian shares four tips for preventing pet obesity.
Preventing Pet Obesity Starts with Good Pet Nutrition
#1: Nutrition starts with puppy and kitten care.
Good pet nutrition starts as soon as you welcome a new puppy or kitten into your family. Choose a pet food that is specially formulated for your young pet’s health needs. For example, large breed puppies should be fed a large breed puppy food mix, which will help them gain weight slowly and not stress growing joints. Our vet hospital offers nutrition counseling as part of our puppy and kitten care program.
#2: Portion control helps prevent obesity.
Are you over-feeding your pet? Portion size is partially determined by your pet’s activity level. As pets age and become more sedentary, they may need smaller portions than when they were younger and more active.
#3: Read food labels and check for filler ingredients.
Not all pet foods are created equal. Health claims on pet foods can be misleading; read food labels and check the ingredient list closely. Is your pet’s food a good balance of lean proteins and vitamins or is it primarily filler ingredients like corn or soy gluten? Some pet foods are the nutritional equivalent of a fast food meal; monitoring the ingredient list is the best way to tell if your pet’s food is nutritionally balanced.
#4: Schedule regular pet nutrition check-ups.
During a pet wellness care check-up, our vet will assess your pet’s diet in relation to his or her lifestyle needs, age and current weight. Regular assessments will help prevent weight gain.
What steps do you take to maintain your pet’s weight at a healthy level?