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Is your pup getting a bit round? Fido may be adorable if he’s a little pudgy, but if he becomes obese, he’ll be at risk for some very serious health problems. Those extra pounds can really take a toll on your pet’s health! Read on as a Norwalk, CA vet discusses doggy obesity.
As one may expect, diet and exercise both play large roles in Fido’s weight. However, some dogs are more likely to become obese than others. Dogs that are over five are at increased risk of obesity, simply because they aren’t as active or playful as younger pooches. Pups that spend the majority of their time indoors are also more likely to get chubby. Our canine pals sometimes gain weight after being fixed. Certain health conditions, such as hypothyroidism, can also cause obesity.
As noted above, obesity can cause a variety of health issues in dogs, including heart disease, liver and kidney issues, skin problems, reproductive issues, and diabetes. That additional weight will also put extra strain on Fido’s bones and joints, which can exacerbate or contribute to painful medical issues like arthritis and hip dysplasia. Dogs that are overweight or obese also have higher risks of developing complications after surgery or anesthesia. They even have shorter lifespans!
Making sure that Fido is getting the right type and amount of exercise is very important. Your pet’s exact activity needs will depend on his age, weight, breed, and health, so ask your vet for recommendations. For instance, small dogs may only need a walk around the block, while an active, medium-sized dog may need an hour of exercise daily. However, Fido’s workouts can be fun for both of you. Playing games like Fetch, or having your pooch chase a laser pointer, can help keep your furry buddy fit.
Man’s Best Friend is very, very enthusiastic about food. Fido is also an expert at convincing us that he’s starving, even if he just ate. We know, doggy theatrics can be pretty convincing. That’s one reason why it’s so important to follow your vet’s nutritional recommendations. If you know that your pet has eaten exactly what he should have, you’ll be less likely to fall for those sad puppy dog eyes.
Please contact us, your Norwalk, CA pet hospital, for all of your dog’s veterinary care needs. We’re here for you!