Managing one’s weight is an important part of living a healthy lifestyle, and you may find yourself Helping Your Pooch Lose A Few Extra Pounds. This counts for the whole family, including those who might stand on four legs.
If you’re trying to provide a healthy life for your dog, then it pays to ensure that you don’t let them get overweight. Here, we’re going to look at some habits you can develop and changes you can make to help your four-legged friend lose the extra weight they have.
Helping Your Pooch Lose A Few Extra Pounds
Stop feeding them when you shouldn’t
A lot of people will share food with their dogs, giving them scraps from their plate, or extra treats outside of those that are part of their daily routine. You might think that this does no harm at all but the truth is that every little scrap counts.
If they’re already getting their recommended caloric intake through their own food, then that’s extra mass that’s going to go somewhere. This is especially true if you’re feeding them carb-heavy foods that wouldn’t normally be part of their diet.
Try switching up their food
Of course, you should also look at the food that’s in your dog’s bowl as well. Consider the dog food that you’re getting as it might be a part of the problem.
This is especially true of kibble and other dog foods that can contain a lot of grains. This can mean a lot of empty calories that have no real nutritional value. Aside from switching to more animal proteins, there is some evidence to suggest that vegetarian dog food can be very effective in helping them lose weight.
Just be sure to make any dietary transitions gradual. Switching their food up on them too quickly can result in some digestion trouble to start.
Get them moving more
Food might be the primary factor behind your dog having a little extra weight, but if you’re exchanging the diet then you may as well change how you exercise with your dog as well. Making sure that your dog is getting enough walks throughout the day is going to be key, and you should look at walking them for 20 minutes a day, twice a day.
Increasing their exercise gradually if you’re already doing that might be a good idea. You don’t want to do it too much. A 10% increase in your walking time each walk should be enough.
Know when you should take them to the vet
Sometimes, as with people, there are medical conditions that could be affecting your dog’s body. This can include conditions such as hypothyroidism and hyperadrenocorticism.
Older dogs tend to be more susceptible to these conditions, but it’s not impossible for them to affect younger dogs, too. Your vet can also make recommendations for other ways you can safely change their diet and improve physical activity.
Make sure that, whatever changes you make to your dog’s lifestyle, you do with your vet onboard. They can make sure that any transitions are being done healthily and help you monitor your dog to ensure that it’s working to improve their wellbeing.