Pet Obesity

posted: by: ah/jz Tags: "Clinic Specials" "News" 

Obesity is a disease in pets defined as an excess of body fat. Cats and dogs that are fed too much, don't exercise, or have a slower metabolism are at risk for obesity. Hypothyroidism is a hormonal disease that can also predispose a dog to obesity. 
Obesity leads to other health problems such as diabetes, bone/joint disease and breathing problems. Many of these conditions in turn, cause a decreased lifespan. 
Obesity is diagnosed by scoring the pet's body condition. This BCS (or Body Condition Score) is determined by your veterinarian at the time of an exam. Hypothyroidism can be ruled out with blood tests.

Treatment involves diet changes and exercise. Diets rich in fiber and protein, but low in fat, can help reduce obesity. An excellent example of how a diet helped to combat obesity was exemplified in the case of two of our patients, brother and sister, Luke and Leia. Luke weighed 95 lbs. and Leia weighed 60.6 lbs. With the assistance of our Purina food representative Julia, we developed a weight loss program involving both Purina O/M, a low fat diet, and exercise. Over the course of several months, the owners closely followed a feeding protocol and Luke and Leia were weighed monthly. Ultimately it was no easy feat for our conscientious clients, but as a result, Luke now weighs 43.5 and Leia 36.9!

If you feel your pet could benefit from a weight loss program, give us a call at 410-687-1111 to schedule an appointment today.