Yes. Dogs get diabetes, hypertension, and heart disease too. And being overweight or obese puts them at greater risk.
Take a good look at little ol’ Harry and go through this checklist:
When you come home, Harry still wags his tail ecstatically and struggles to get up, but he no longer comes running with a toy asking to play fetch
He stares from the bottom of the stairwell (or foot of the couch/bed) and waits patiently until you have no choice but to hoist him up
He basically polishes off your plate (and every other family member’s) at mealtimes
There’s been an increased squirrel population in your neighbourhood and for the first time they’re crossing through your yard as if it’s a squirrel highway
Leash pulling is no longer the problem, but leash stalling is.
At the off-leash park, you have to manually upright Harry when he tries to roll around on the grass
A game of fetch ends after just one round.
You have to buy a new dog raincoat as the it doesn’t wrap around the Harry’s belly anymore
You procrastinated with his annual vet check-up in fear of the vet’s scale and judging eyes
You can’t feel Harry’s ribs anymore
If you checked off at least 7 of the above, you may have a hefty lap potato at the end of the leash.
You may want to consider the following:
Get on top of that overdue vet check-up.
Start or reboot a regular exercise regimen for you and your dog. This will also help combat any extra holiday weight for the human family members!
Mealtime routines are key to maintaining weight. Keep a schedule on the calendar, so to make sure everyone stays on track and Harry doesn’t get a meal twice.
Never mind those puppy eyes. Harry will thank you.