With the pandemic having surpassed 10 months, and lockdown measures having been in place for the majority of this time for several regions, some may have noticed they’ve put on a few pounds.
While many may be focusing their efforts on their own health, they may be neglecting the health of their pet.
Canada’s Pet Wellness Report found obesity was the number one cause of early death among Canadian pets.
According to the findings, obesity can shorten a pet’s life expectancy by increasing their propensity to develop issues like heart disease, diabetes, and fatty liver disease.
As a result, PetSmart Canada has put together some tips for owners to mitigate the risk of their pet developing obesity-related illnesses.
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The first thing the popular pet store advocated for was an appointment with a veterinarian.
“To assess if your pet is overweight or obese, we first determine their Body Condition Score (BCS) based on their physical appearance and can measure their body weight against a standard ideal body weight for your pet’s breed and sex,” Jennifer Freeman, PetSmart resident veterinarian and pet care expert, said in a news release.
“Dogs and cats who are 10 to 20 per cent or more above their ideal body weight are considered overweight,” she continued.
Another tip for pet owners is to ensure their furry friends are eating properly—there are many different foods formulated for certain issues—such as weight loss—and there are also foods formulated for certain breeds.
Pet owners are encouraged to do some research about which foods they should be providing for their pets.
Additionally, just as it is for humans, exercise is essential for the health of pets—most dogs require at least one 30-minute walk per day, while cats benefit from several, short bursts of energy throughout the day.