It’s the start of a brand new year. It’s not uncommon for people to make resolutions for themselves when a new year rolls around. It’s a great time for a fresh start and to live the life you want to live.
One very popular resolution people often make it to eat healthier – often to lose weight. I have to admit that I have made that resolution pretty much every year for as long as I can remember. I stopped making resolutions and opted on making better choices for myself and my family.
Have you ever given any thought to making resolutions for your pet? Clearly Fido and Fluffy don’t need to resolve to be more organized or aim for a promotion at work. You pets can benefit from eating healthier, losing weight and getting in more exercise. It’s up to you as their “pet parent” to make that resolution for them and do what you can to follow through.
Obesity is on the rise across the country. Did you know what pet obesity is also a problem? It’s estimated 54% of dogs and 58% of cats are overweight or obese and according to Data from Nationwide, pet obesity is on the rise for the sixth straight year.
Obesity is a significant risk factor for many life-threatening diseases that affect dogs and cats but with diligence and effort, your pet can lose weight too.
I know all about obese pets. We have five cats and a dog (plus a Goldfish). Two of our cats are significantly overweight. Two are within a normal weight range and one is very skinny with sagging skin. The one skinny one with the sagging skin (named Velcro – he’s pictured at the top of this post) used to be obese too. His obesity lead to Diabetes. In addition he’s lost almost all of his teeth. He has to eat soft foods (like pates) because he can’t chew. He does try to chew, but its not easy for him.
Obese pets might make for adorable YouTube videos, but the reality is obesity DOES lead to health issues, and even early death from health issues. If you truly love your pet you don’t want to contribute to their health issues or cause them to die young.
Velcro always had a great appetite. He eventually tipped the scales at 24 pounds. We didn’t see him as obese, per say. We knew he was a big cat, but he ate well and was always very playful, even at his heaviest. We honestly didn’t think his health was at stake.
We noticed that Velcro drank a lot more water than usual, and he was loosing weight. We took him to the vet to have him checked out. The vet told us he had Diabetes and he would need insulin shots twice a day, every day, for the rest of his life. At that time he was 9 years old. He had a long life ahead of him. I had another Diabetic cat when I was younger. She lived to be 22 years old. The last four years of her life she had Diabetes. She was not overweight.
Now we live with the reality of having a cat with Diabetes. His insulin is OVER $300+ per vial (the price keeps going up). The syringes to give him his shots twice a day costs us $36 for 100, so we need to purchase them every month and a half. His vet bills are also astronomical because he requires special blood tests.
Velcro is very skinny with saggy skin. The vet says he’s healthy (as long as we watch what he eats and give him his insulin) and he’s very playful. I just wish we too heed to his obesity and did something about it sooner.
I’ve noticed that one of our other obese cats, Anakin, drinks A LOT of water. He hasn’t lost weight, but I fear he’s going to end up with Diabetes too. We already have one cat with Diabetes, another cat with a lot of health issues (non-weight related) and a dog with a fatal liver disease. We cannot afford another sick pet.
Pet obesity can not only lead to Diabetes, it can also cause damage to joints and bones, which can cause pain and discomfort. Obesity can also lead to heart problems, high blood pressure, decreased liver function and a risk of cancer to name a FEW (there are more health issues that can be caused by obesity). Basically, the same health issues that can come from human obesity can also happen to pets.
It’s not too late to do something about it. Start TODAY to help your pet lose weight and get healthy.
Here are some thing you can do right now to help your pet lead a long, happy and health life.
Stop feeding your pet tables scraps and people food (UNLESS your pet is already on a natural food diet). Many foods are toxic to pets (onions, chocolate, garlic, grapes…). Other foods can be dangerous (chips can get lodged in their throat, they can choke on pits).
Makes sure your pet has amble clean, fresh water daily.
Limit treats. If you want to get your pet a treat make sure it’s a treat made for animals and limit it to one or two treats once a day. Too many treats can cause your pet to gain weight.
Don’t over feed your pet. Read the label and find out what the recommend amount of food is for your pets size/weight. Don’t just fill up a bowl of dry food. Weight and measure it so you know you are feeding your pet the correct amount.
Make sure your pet gets plenty of exercise. Take your dog for a hike or a run. Buy a laser light for your cat and have them run around and chase after it. Do what you can do get your pet moving.
Feed your pet quality food. Believe it or not, not all pet food is made the same way. Many pet foods you find at your local grocery store is more additives and fillers than actual food and nutrition. That is why those pet foods are so inexpensive. Look at them as the “fast food” of pet foods. It may look good and taste good, but when you break them down and check out the ingredients you’ll see that there is nothing healthy or nutritious about them.
Petcurean is healthy pet food option. Petcurean offers a variety of dog and cat foods to suit your pet’s preferences and dietary needs.
If you are not sure which pet food would be best for your dog or cat, you can check out Petcurean’s Food Finder.
Petcurean has options that include foods made with totally fresh ingredients, food made with organic ingredients, and food for specific health requirements, including foods for pets who require grain free foods and/or foods with limited ingredients. Our dog can only eat food with limited ingredients. He has a very sensitive stomach and the littlest change can cause him to have and upset stomach (and diarrhea) for days, if not weeks.
Think about it – pet food is similar to human food by that if you feed yourself only cheap, “junk” foods you are not doing your body any good. The same applies with pets. If you feed them “junk” foods (pet food made with man-made ingredients, fillers and additives) it’s not healthy for them, most especially if you want them to lose or maintain a healthy weight.
You can learn more about Petcurean by visiting Petcurean.com. The brand is also found on social media. All of their links are found at the bottom of their website. You can even print out a money saving coupon (found towards the bottom of the Petcurean website).
Petcurean foods can be found at many pet stores across the country.
Does your pet have a weight problem? If so, what are you doing to help him/her lose weight and get healthy?
If you have any tips for keeping your pet happy and healthy please feel free to leave a comment and tell me about them. I always love to hear from readers.
*I have partnered with Petcurean to bring you this information. Although compensated the opinions expressed are my own and not influenced in any way.