What to do with an overweight pet

Whether you’re the owner of a cat, a dog, or some other lovable critter, it is often easy to say “I love you,” with food. However, if you own an overweight pet, the first thing to correct may be your behavior. How you think you are showing affection can actually be destructive to your best friend.

Once you have learned to say “I love you” in an alternate way (with playful physical activity, for example), remove the automatic feeder. Do not allow your pet to free-eat. Some animals are able to express self-control, but others often are not.

Next, talk with your vet about your pet’s ideal weight and how much it should consume. This varies from pet-to-pet and diet-to-diet. If your pet eats a wet and dry diet, it is best to consult with your veterinarian about how much of each your pet should be getting daily. It is also helpful to get your pet on a feeding schedule. This can help with metabolism, digestion and consumption rate.

And, when it comes to food, don’t let the “guilt” get to you. Humans allow guilt to linger, but other animals do not. If you can’t let go of the guilt, try thinking of it in a different way. You aren’t taking away food from your pet – you are providing him or her with a better life!

Taking these steps may not show immediate improvements, but the benefits will eventually shine through. It can sometimes take longer than a year, but your pet’s wellbeing is worth the dedication.

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