If you share your home with a dog that's carrying far too much weight, you would not be doing them any favours by continuing to over-feed them. In fact, research has proved that overweight and obese dogs have shorter lifespans which in short, means you would not have them around for as long as you hoped you would if you don't put them on a diet straight away!
Dog owners have lots of excuses why their pets are overweight, but rarely are any of them valid because keeping dogs fit and healthy is of paramount importance. If a dog is overweight or in a worst case scenario, obese, it goes without saying they are not healthy and in fact are more at risk of contracting some very nasty diseases and health disorders. Read on to see the top 5 excuses that owners give as to why a dog is carrying too much weight!
What many dog owners do not realise is that it is not necessarily the amount of food a dog eats on a daily basis that makes them gain too much weight. A dog's calorie intake has to match how much they expend during the exercise they are given on a daily basis. If a dog only eats a very little amount of dry food, but then sleeps most of the day away without lifting a paw except to go outside and to do their "business", they are bound to put on weight because they are not getting enough regular exercise!
A lot of dogs convince their owners they are hungry all of the time and will "beg" for food even after they have just been fed. It's in a dog's nature to eat because they inherited certain traits from their ancestors that never knew when or where their next meal might come from. As such, our domestic canine friends still want to fill up their tummies with as much food as possible just in case they don't get to eat again the next day or for another week! You have to bear this in mind when your dog tries to convince you they need more food in the bowls just after they've finished eating their usual ration!
Owners need to realise that a dog would not starve if they are not given all those "treats" and extra food on a daily basis. In fact, they would lose weight and therefore be more active and mobile. In short, carrying less weight around would be a far better "treat" for an overweight dog because they will start enjoying being a "dog" again. They will start rushing about tracking down all those delightful scents and smells they come across when out on their daily walks which they find hard to do when they are too fat!
Dogs in their senior years that carry too much weight are far less mobile and active because of all the extra pounds they have to lug around. In short, a dog would look and act a lot older than they actually are just because they are obese or overweight! Shedding a few pounds could make all the difference as to how active your pet suddenly becomes and as a bonus, they will be healthier, happier and it will certainly improve their chances of extending their lives which means you'll have them around for a lot longer!
A dog would have to be severely undernourished for people to notice and they would more than likely think a dog is either very ill or they are being mistreated and not fed the right sort of diet to suit their breed and age. A slim dog is a healthy dog and a fat dog is one that is being put at risk of developing lots of nasty disorders that will severely shorten their lives!
Some breeds are more couch potatoes than others, but this doesn't mean they don't need to be given regular exercise to match their daily calorie intake. You only have to feed a dog a small amount and not take them out for enough exercise for them to start ploughing on the pounds. Just like people, once a dog puts on too much weight, it can be really hard for them to lose it again and carrying extra weight around puts a lot of strain on their bones, joints and systems. The end result, dogs live shorter lives when they are obese or overweight!