overweight pug dog sitting on sidewalk panting

Did you know that a healthy weight and balanced diet is just as significant for your fur babies as it is for you?!? Finding the right mixture of exercise and diet for your pet can be a process. Our Bayside Animal Hospital staff is here to help you understand the basics of healthy pet weight management. Learn about the risks of pet obesity, and discover a few of our tips for designing a nutritious, balanced diet for your favorite companion animal. Discover how to keep your pets well-nourished, active, and healthy with pet weight management tips.

Facts About Pet Obesity

corgi dog obese pet laying on sunny, sandy beach

In the United States, nearly 60% of dogs and cats are clinically overweight. While feeding your pet table scraps, treats, and their usual food can feel like a series of loving gestures—too much snacking can suddenly become a health risk.

As with humans, poor weight management can lead to health issues, ranging from simple inactivity to more life-threatening, chronic concerns, such as heart disease, diabetes, and arthritis.

Top Health Issues Caused by Pet Obesity

chubby cat laying upside down staring at camera, cute fat cat

Overall, obesity in pets shortens their life expectancy and diminishes their quality of life. 

  1. High Blood Pressure
  2. Diabetes
  3. Kidney Disease
  4. Respiratory Issues
  5. Cancer

While some chronic conditions are manageable with adequate, ongoing care, such long-term care can be costly and requires dedication from pet parents to uphold the necessary regimen.

Tips for Healthy Pet Weight Management & Lifestyle for Your Pets

Cute german shepherd outside, laying in the grass, overweight but panting after running

While we at Bayside are not here to body-shame your furry friends, we are here to help you learn why managing your pet’s weight is essential and provide professional advice for achieving those goals.

  • Stay Active: Take dogs for daily walks, go swimming, or play a few extra rounds of fetch each day. Keep cats active and agile by providing climbing trees, hunting games, and time outdoors (if they enjoy that).
  • Read Food Labels: This is a great place to start! 77% of Millennial pet owners already do this. But what should you look for? Food, for both dogs and cats, should be a balance of high fat, moderate protein, and low carbohydrate.
  • Limit Treats: Treats or special snacks should only make up about 10% of your pet’s diet and probably shouldn’t include table scraps.
  • Don’t Forget the Veggies: Try adding pet-safe veggies (or water) to their kibble to help them feel full longer and eliminate the need for calorie-dense treats.

If you ever have questions or concerns about your pet’s current weight, diet, or nutritional needs, please don’t hesitate to ask one of our friendly staff members!