Obesity in pets

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Echuca Veterinary Clinic
332 High Street
Victoria 3564

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03 5482 3202

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389 Poictiers Street
NSW 2710

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03 5881 5488

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Vic 2731

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57 Warmatta St
NSW 2713

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03 5883 3833

Obesity is a serious health and welfare issue, affecting up to 33% of pets in Australia. The most common contributing factors to overweight pets is being fed too much, and being exercised too little.

The lifestyle of Australian families plays a large part in why our pets are becoming more and more overweight. The feeding of “table scraps” is a huge issue, and is becoming more widely accepted as the norm in society. However, most owners do not realise the damage they are doing to their pet with the offering of a tiny, regular tasty “treat” – just half a potato chip to a cat is equivalent to half a hamburger for humans!

Although an overweight little Jack Russell Terrier may look cute and pudgy, the impact on his health can be devastating. Obesity can contribute to the development of diseases such as arthritis, diabetes, pancreatitis, heart disease, and it also increases the risk for development of some particular cancers. In addition, it negatively affects your pet’s quality of life, as it can inhibit their ability to do everyday activities, such as groom themselves properly.

It is therefore imperative that our pet’s weight is tightly controlled and regulated. The most common methods of weight loss are to restrict dietary intake (and/or feed a special low-fat diet) and increase exercise levels. Exercising pets may be as little as taking the dog for a daily walk, or encouraging your cat to play with toys to mimic their natural hunting instincts.