September 20th 2006 8:00 pm
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Its Brutus and I'm back after a long break with more words of wisdom. Today, I want to mention one of my mama's pet peeves-fat pets. Just like people, being overweight is unhealthy for animals.
Ways to prevent your pet(s) from becoming fat:
(1) Feed a high quality diet on a schedule
When pets are free fed, they are more likely to take in too many calories. Being on a feeding schedule, such as being fed a certain amount in the morning and a certain amount in the evening helps keep your pet healthy by not allowing him or her to gorge, helping him or her stay on a regular potty schedule, and helps him or her from boredom eating (yes, dogs will do that just like people!). A high quality diet is a very important key in staying trim as well. Be sure to read that ingredient list and if you have any questions, PM my mama and she can send you some links and stuff that are really helpful!
Just like with people, the more active you are, the more calories you burn. If you take in more calories than you burn, that is not a good thing! Be sure your doggie parents check with your vet before they start any kind of exercise program, though to make sure you are healthy enough to do that!
(3) No table scraps, and limit treats!
Some people food is ok for us doggies, but if your owners do not distinguish the good from the bad, then it is best to not get any at all. Also, milkbones and similar treats are full of empty calories. As yummy as they are, your owner should really avoid over use of these. Carrots are a great yummy, low fat substitute!
What if you are already overweight?
If you are already overweight, your owner should have you throughly checked by a vet just to make sure there are no underlying medical issues that could cause weight gain. If there are no issues found, then a diet is a must! These steps are similar to the other ones.
(1) Schedule your pet'(s) feedings and use a high quality food and avoid over treating.
Avoid diet foods, just cut back on the portions of the regular diet you are feeding. Diet foods contain a lot of yucky ingredients and are often times full of fillers. If your dog seems to be hungry all the time due to the cut back in food, you can add some fresh or frozen (steamed) green beans to his or her meal. This will help your dog fill full, but will not add calories.
Instead of milk bones, give your pet healthy snacks like carrot sticks, fruit peices (but be careful as some are toxic to dogs, such as anything in the grape family), and plain cheerios are great alternatives!
(2)Get more active!
Make sure your pet is healthy enough to exercise and then start out slow. Just like with people, if we've been sediment for a while, we need to build up our stamina.
(3) Don't Give up!
It is hard to overlook those pleading eyes, but you must! Pets will not shed pounds overnight, just like with people, weight loss is very difficult and requires total dedication. You can do it, though!
Until next time,
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