DOG , THEIR DIET AND EXERCISE
Obesity, even in an otherwise healthy dog is often responsible
for congestive heart failure, stroke, heart attacks, cancer,
lung disease, diabetes, constipation, intestinal gas, anal
gland problems and an impaired immune system. Obese dogs are
much more likely to die during surgery, have hypertension,
develop skin problems (like eczema), arthritis and spinal
disk problems. Because of the risk of developing disease,
obese dogs have a much shorter life span in general. Thus
if you think your dog is fat then immediately take steps to
cut down on his food in take, make him go on a diet and bring
him back in shape. Always take your dog to the vet for a checkup
before beginning any radical diet changes. If your veterinarian
has agreed with you on the necessity of a new diet and exercise
plan, the first creature that will need to be re-trained is
YOU! You will need to become hard-hearted and cruel. Well,
not really, but it may seem that way when your poor "starving"
dog is begging you for mercy, accusing you with pleading eyes!
You must become firm, committed, a rock that will not budge.
Just remember that if your dog's weight is more normal, his
health and his overall quality of life will be much improved.
And you'll enjoy his companionship for a much longer time.
begin, here are a few basic steps:
free feed a Fat Dog, i.e. don't leave down food for him
to nibble on all day. Instead, divide the daily rations
into two or more feedings. Do not leave food down for more
than fifteen minutes at each meal.
him out of the room while you are eating or preparing food.
table treats and scraps.
sure everyone in the family understands the need for your
dog's new diet. All your efforts will be of no avail if
someone keeps slipping him snacks. Watch that he doesn't
steal food from a child's hand.
childproof latches on cupboards with food, or move the food
to inaccessible locations.
your Fat Dog away from your other pets, preferably in a
room by himself. Do not let him out until the other pets
have finished and you have taken up their bowls and rinsed
them (your dog can make a second meal from the crumbs left
over by other pets).
raw vegetables to increase bulk and variety to food with
few calories. Vegetables: carrots, pumpkin, peas, green
beans, asparagus, broccoli or cauliflower are some suggestions.
calorie food will help a slightly overweight dog to cut
down, but if your dog is really overweight, going this route
alone will not help. Special diet foods are available through
you are changing food and he is resisting it, mix 40% of
the new food with the old for a few days and gradually increase
the amount of the new food.
he refuses to eat, it still does not hurt a healthy dog
to fast for one or more days. So if he stages a hunger strike
against the new food (especially if it is already mixed
with the old), put down a tablespoon or two of the new mixture.
Leave it down for fifteen to twenty minutes twice a day
and then take it up. Generally after a day or two of this
(close your ears against the howls of protest and the looks
of "you're killing me", he will give in and dive into the
sure to always have plenty of fresh water available.
must be combined with an exercise program to be truly effective.
to the diet faithfully and you will see as a result a sleeker,
shiny, playful, happy companion.
A good diet coupled with exercise will help your dog stay
slim, trim and healthy. Just like people, dogs need to warm
up at the beginning of an exercise period and cool down at
the end. Walking is one of the best exercises. Start slowly
and then increase the pace. You must sustain a good tempo
for at least fifteen minutes, a minimum of three times per
week. Keep a sharp eye on him to see if he is breathing hard,
panting heavily, limping or having difficulty keeping up.
Stop immediately if you notice any of these signs of distress.
Once he seems comfortable with the routine, you can increase
the pace or the duration. You'll end up in better physical
shape too! Combine obedience training with fun and games.
Vary the routine. Toss toys to retrieve. While you bicycle,
have your dog run alongside on a long leash. If you have stairs,
have him retrieve his favorite toy by tossing it downstairs.
The thought and time you put into a fun exercise routine will
show your dog you love him and you will get his full co-operation.