How to Help Your Dog Lose Weight
There's not much cuter than a rollie-pollie pooch. However, an overweight pup is not a healthy pup. Those soft rolls may look adorable, but they are a sign that your dog isn't at a healthy weight, and that can set him up for other health problems, including everything from diabetes to heart disease.
If your dog is overweight, you need to take action to make sure you help keep him healthy and happy for many years to come. Here are a few tips for how you can help your dog to lose weight.
See a Vet
The first thing you should do when your pet has any health issue is to see a vet for a consultation and advice. Your vet can look your dog over and run any tests necessary to determine if there are any underlying health problems that could be causing the weight gain. If there are no health issues to deal with, your vet can then tell you exactly how much weight your dog needs to lose and can offer you information about how to help your dog do so safely.
Serve Diet Food
There are many special blends of dog food that you can serve that are designed to help your dog lose weight. These can include foods that are lower in calories, lower in fat, or lower in sugars and other unhealthy fillers. Choose one of these special blends to help your dog lose weight and get the nutrition that he needs.
Just like you have to do when you want to lose weight, your dog must practice portion control in order to drop pounds. Since he's unlikely to turn away seconds if they're offered, you have to be the one practicing control. Measure out the food that your dog needs rather than just pouring a bowl and leaving it out all day for mindless grazing. Only provide the food your dog needs when it is meal time, and don't allow more snacking in between meals.
Cut Out Treats
Though you may want to give your dog a nice scrap of meat or some other treats when he's done a trick or some other behavior that you want to encourage, these treats can quickly add up in calories and contribute to your dog's weight problem. When you are trying to help your dog lose weight, it's best to cut out treats entirely. Focus instead on quality food at meal times, and give out scratches and cuddles to reinforce positive behavior instead of food.
Your dog's diet is only one factor contributing to his weight problem. If you want to help your dog lose weight in a healthy way, you also need to help him to get more exercise. Depending on your dog's weight and current activity level, you may have to start with short walks to the backyard and back. Over time, you can build to walks around the block, then longer walks, and then runs. Never take on too much, too soon, or you could risk injuring your dog and causing other serious health problems.
.Don't let the lure of a cute and chubby pooch stop you from helping your dog get healthy. If you're dog is overweight, take these steps to help him drop those unnecessary pounds and get healthy now. You'll be happy to have your dog for many more years to come.
Chloe Trogden runs www.collegegrant.net, which serves as an up-to-date college guide for thousands of people all over the world. Her leisure activities include camping, swimming and playing her guitar.