Overweight pets have shorter life spans and are at risk for health issues such as diabetes, heart disease, arthritis, high blood pressure and cancer. The good news is that we, as pet owners, can control this.

 OverweightPugHere are some easy fixes:

Always measure food – Feed your pet twice daily…if your pet doesn’t eat his meal within 20 minutes, pick it up & put it away until the next meal.

Create an exercise routine – walk your dog daily or play catch or frisbee in the backyard-your cat will enjoy playing with a feather on a string or batting around a ping pong ball.

Treats – Give limited treats or use “light” treats—also, break the treats into smaller sizes.

Resist loving your pet with food – Food is no substitute for attention. Petting them, brushing them or playing tug of war is far healthier for your pet. Those big loving eyes are hard to say “no” to but remember that pet food is more well balanced for your pet than table food. ‘.

***Severe caloric restrictions can be harmful to pets—always discuss with your veterinarian before starting any weight loss program.. Most of us “love our pets to death.” Instead let’s “love them to life” through exercise, play, and weight control.

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