According to the American Animal Hospital Association, more than half of dogs and cats in the U.S. are considered overweight or obese. Just like excess weight causes health problems for humans, a few extra pounds can do serious damage to a pet’s health, leading to problems like diabetes, cardiovascular disease, joint and mobility issues, and more. Left unaddressed, obesity can significantly diminish his or her quality of life and even shorten a pet’s lifespan.
Is My Pet Overweight?
Ideal weight differs for every pet. The number on the scale can’t always determine whether a pet is overweight or obese. Physical signs better indicate when a pet is overweight.
Healthy cats and dogs should have a visible waistline. Viewed from above or the side, their midsections should become more narrow just in front of the hind legs. You should also be able to feel a pet’s ribs beneath their skin and a thin layer of fat.
Additionally, overweight pets tend to become easily winded or tired with minimal activity.
Weight Management Services for Pets
When pets are overweight or obese, they’ll benefit from losing weight. Our veterinarians will assess your pet and work with you to determine a reasonable and healthy weight loss plan that combines dietary adjustments and regular, incremental exercise.
Once your pet has achieved a healthy weight, he or she no longer needs to lose weight. Instead, at this stage, we’ll help you adjust their daily diet and exercise with maintenance in mind.
We offer nutritional counseling for all pet owners to help you determine the best diet and nutritional supplements for your unique pet.
Personalized Pet Health Plans
There’s no one-size-fits-all solution for weight management. For example, what works well for one pet, like a senior dog with mobility issues, might not be the best solution for another, like a cat with diabetes.
Rather than recommending a generic routine for your pet, we’ll work with you to determine a realistic and healthy goal weight, while recommending personalized diet, nutrition, and exercise regimens based on your pet’s life stage, species, breed, sex, medical history, and current lifestyle.
Schedule an Appointment with a White Haven Veterinarian
While our veterinarians always assess your pet’s weight during a regular wellness exam, we encourage you to schedule a nutritional counseling and weight management appointment for your pet at any time. We’ll be happy to assess your pet’s physique, help you determine an ideal weight for your pet, and get you and your pet started on a weight management program right away.