Weight Loss Tips for Pets
Every January 1st, we make promises to better ourselves in the New Year. The most common resolutions often revolve around health, such as exercising more or losing weight.
In 2020, though, it’s not just us humans who should be concerned about living a healthier lifestyle. It’s also our pets. In fact, according to the latest data from the Association for Pet Obesity Prevention (APOP), 59.5% of cats and 55.8% of dogs could be classified as obese in 2018.
To help pets get fit this year, here are a few weight loss tips and prevention strategies for retailers to share with their customers.
1. Consult your vet.
First things first: before you make any changes to your pet’s diet, talk to your veterinarian. They will be able to recommend options for their specific needs, such as foods that are high in protein and low in carbohydrates.
2. Prevent overeating.
One sure-fire way to lose weight for both pets and humans: reducing caloric intake. Of course, one of the simplest ways is to stop feeding pets table scraps and cut back on treats.
Even if you’re just feeding your pet kibble, though, you still might be overfeeding them. Feeding guides on bags sometimes overestimate portion sizes, so consider cutting back and using measuring cups for more exact distribution.
Owners in multi-pet households may also want to try feeding pets separately to prevent one pet from stealing extra bites from another’s meal.
3. Get moving
The other key to weight loss is, of course, exercise. Pet parents can help their pets get active by scheduling regular play time – preferably at least 15 minutes twice a day. This can be anything from brisk walks around the neighborhood to rounds of frisbee at the park.
For extra stubborn pets, start with little steps. Encourage movement by moving their food bowl around the house or placing bits of food in different places so they have to work for their meal. Pets with joint issues may also benefit from hydrotherapy like internet-famous cat Cinder Block, who is on who own weight loss journey.