Your pets ideal weight

February 8th, 2018

Knowing if your pet is the ideal weight is important as being under or over the preferred weight can come with health complications. Even if you’re actively watching their weight and doing the right thing, there may be underlying health issues contributing to their weight gain or loss.

Around one-third of Australian pets (cats and dogs) are classed as overweight by veterinarian’s which is an alarming statistic. Obesity can have a direct impact on the pet’s health and lead to a number of problems such as liver disease, cardiovascular disease, increased risk of cancer, reduced quality of life, and a reduced life expectancy. It is believed that overfeeding your pet is just as bad as underfeeding them.

How to tell if your pet is healthy

Underweight: you will be able to easily see your pet’s spine, ribs and hipbones with a clear loss of muscle and no fat under their skin. From above you will notice that their waist is obviously visible and their tummy tuck after the rib cage is extreme.

Overweight: a thick layer of fat will be the first identifiable factor resulting in it being hard to feel their ribcage, spine or other bones. Their waist will not be visible or could even be bulging out from the rest of the body. Their tummy tuck will not be existent and they may even have rolls at their shoulder blades or base of their tail.

Ideal weight: the dog or cats bones, spine and ribs should be able to be felt easily with a fine layer of fat around them when touching your pet. On short-coated breeds, the ribs should be seen when turning or panting during exercise, and they should have a visible waist when viewing from above and a tummy tuck after the rib cage when looking at them from the side.

Maintaining the ideal weight

To make sure your pet is the ideal body weight, it is important to feed them an appropriate portion (depending on their size, age and exercise levels) of premium pet food. If you do not know what type of food is best suited for your pet, having a chat to a vet or a pet food supply store will give you a good indication of what type of food and the serving sizes.

Premium pet food is your best option as it makes sure that your pet is getting the right balance of ingredients that are needed for the lifestyle of your pet. In saying this, try avoiding generic cheap brands as some of these foods can be the equivalent to junk food.

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