Weight Management for Pets

By keeping a healthy weight, your cat or dog will be less prone to develop underlying problems.

Many owners aren’t aware their pets are overweight or even obese. Providing responsible care for your pet means that you monitor their diet to keep them at a healthy weight. When your pet becomes overweight they are likely to develop illnesses which can affect their quality of life. At Fredericton Animal Hospital, our veterinarians take special time to inform owners of the dangers of overfeeding their pets and provide solutions to get your furry friends to a healthy weight.

What is obesity in pets?

Obesity is the accumulation of extra body fat. The extra body fat makes your pet overweight. To determine if your pet is obese our veterinarians measure their weight. A pet is considered overweight when they are between 10-20% over their ideal body weight. When they weigh above 20% of their ideal body weight they are classified as obese. Our team can determine the ideal body weight for your individual pet by considering their breed, age and development. If you have questions about your furry friend’s weight we encourage you to reach out to our team at 506-455-1700.

What health issues do overweight pets experience?

There are many risks associated with obesity in pets. Obesity shortens the lifespan of humans and animals alike. The excessive fatty tissues can release inflammatory hormones that cause imbalances in your pet. This can cause your furry friends to develop:

  • Cancer
  • Diabetes
  • Heart Disease
  • Hypertension
  • Urinary Bladder Stones
  • Osteoarthritis

How can I manage my pet’s weight?

The important thing to remember when managing your pet’s weight is in order for them to keep the weight off, their lifestyle must change. Before any form of weight management begins a veterinarian should always be consulted. If weight loss is done without a licensed veterinarian’s input your pet is at the risk of malnourishment if they aren’t getting enough nutrients. Here are three tips that may help with getting your pet to a healthy weight:

  1. Encourage them to exercise. More play time helps your pet burn fat.
  2. Schedule their meal times. This helps with monitoring their daily caloric intake. We strongly advise against leaving food out as pets are more likely to eat it because it’s there.
  3. Follow a special diet or nutrition created by a veterinarian. Our doctors may recommend adjusting their meals and giving them special nutrition that aids in weight loss. Your pet should consume food high in protein, fiber, antioxidants and other nutrients.
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