Obesity is defined as the excessive accumulation of body fat. Between 25 and 40 percent of pets are considered obese or are likely to become obese. It is the most common nutrition-related health condition in our society.
The primary causes of obesity are overeating and lack of exercise. When regular caloric intake exceeds the energy burned, the excess is stored as fat. As little as an extra 1 percent caloric intake can result in a 25 percent increase over ideal body weight by middle age.
Diagnosis and Treatment Notes:
- Obesity is generally diagnosed by physical examination findings and a review of your pet’s weight and body condition score. To determine if there is an underlying disorder, bloodwork may be recommended including a thyroid level.
- Treatment depends on your pet’s initial weight, body condition score, underlying disease, your individual pet, and your veterinarian. Daily caloric intake is lowered by changing the type or amount of food. Exercise should be slowly increased. Discuss treatment details when your pet is diagnosed with this condition.
What to Watch for*:
- Large body size
- Difficulty breathing
- Difficulty walking
- Exercise intolerance
- Heat intolerance
*Please notify us if you notice any of the above signs or if you have any questions!