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Pet Obesity Awareness Day

Pet Obesity Awareness Day

Yes.

I’m writing another post about pet obesity.

I see your eyes glazing over. I’ve possibly lost you already.

You’re likely ready to close this post and move on to a topic that is considered “fun”. Maybe you’d rather be viewing photos of cute puppies and kittens – who wouldn’t?

Reading articles or listening to someone talk about overweight pets and pet obesity may not be considered one of those “fun things to do”, but personally, I am obsessed with the topic – is “obsessed” to strong of a word? I don’t think so.

Pet obesity is continually on the rise and the health implications of overweight pets is very real. It’s been said a pet’s life span can be reduced by as much as two years due to obesity and it’s complications.

Pet Obesity Awareness Day

Pet obesity continues to rise

So why do I find the topic of pet obesity so interesting?

How does someone become interested in the topic of pet obesity?

What is it that makes me want to continually learn and understand as much as I can about pet obesity and the numerous health risks and issues caused by a pet being overweight?

Why do I continue to write about pet obesity, pet weight loss, and encouraging everyone to have that very important  “talk” with your vet?

Because my dog was once obese. And if I can inspire, answer questions, help even one pet parent get their pet on the track to becoming happier, healthier, feeling better, then I will keep on writing and talking about pet obesity.

My Dog Was Once Obese

Pet Obesity Awareness Day

My dog before weight loss and before having a waist

I highlighted my dog was once obese, because after what sometimes felt like a battle of wits with my dog, I was able with help, to reduce my dog to a healthy and appropriate weight. In a segment on my blog called “Edie’s Weight Loss Journey“, I documented my dog’s weight loss journey, the challenges my dog and I shared along the way, and our ultimate success.

In my opinion being honest with ourselves is the first step to helping our pets be their healthiest.

“My Dog is Muscular Not Fat”

Pet Obesity Awareness Day

Find your dog’s Body Condition Score with the help of this chart

Yes, I joked that my dog was “muscular not fat”,  but I knew my dog was overweight and needed to lose weight. I think on of my biggest struggles – other than a constantly begging dog – was admitting I needed help and advice to get my dog’s weight under control. No matter how much I tried and thought I could get my dog’s weight under control on my own, I couldn’t.

I’ll be the first to admit that I did not take my vet’s advice right from the start when my dog began to gain weight, but once I did it made the journey so much easier.

It wasn’t long before I began seeing a physical, healthier, and yes, a mental transformation in my dog once she started shedding the extra weight. Of course my dog’s weight journey did not end once she obtained the appropriate weight, I then had to learn how to maintain my dog’s healthy weight.

Pet Obesity Awareness Day

My dog after weight loss and now with a waist

So yes, the topic of pet obesity may not be pretty or fun, but for the sake of our pet’s health, welfare and longevity, it is one that needs to be discussed.

What advice do I have for pet parents who are struggling with an overweight, food obsessed, obese pet like I did? Don’t try to do it on your own, ask your vet for support and help!

Don’t Try To Do It On Your Own!

You and your pet will need all the help and support you can get along this weight loss journey. It’s so much more than saying, “I’ll just feed my pet less and/or exercise them more” – been there, done that, it didn’t work.

Talk to your vet, listen to your vet. Don’t get upset or become offended if your vet tells you your pet needs to loose weight. Because, surprise – your vet is there to help you help your pet be the healthiest they can be!

Author: Kelly Harding

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