February is National Canine weight check month, who knew?
Telling someone that their dog is fat can be like cutting into their heart. I have often said "your dog could loose a few pounds" to a client only to be on the receiving end of a very upset guardian. Some people are truly in shock when I enlighten them about their dogs unfit condition. Others simply deny it; there is no way they have a fat dog. And then others just get mad and that's when we change the subject.
I have often seen dogs in a park longing to run and play but due to their weight condition are resigned to live a sedentary life. Fat dogs tend to look like old dogs, very sad. I am always completely surprised when someone tells me that their dogs is only 2 years old when they look well over the 10 year mark. Unless a dog has a medical condition there is absolutely no reason for them to be heavy.
Neoprene, yep that's all your dog should have covering their ribs; oh and skin and hair of course. To tell if your dog is overweight run your hands over their ribs, you should be able to feel their ribs. It should feel like ribs with a thin layer of neoprene over them. If you cannot pick out individual ribs then your pooch could use to loose a few. Just like with us the more your dog moves the easier it is to drop a few pounds.
The most common reason behind canine obesity from my experience is love and the lack of facts. Love can kill and it does. People tend to think that the way to their dogs heart is through the cookie jar. "Oh she loves them so much I just hate to deny her." This is a far too common reply from owners who have been dealt the fat dog news. Your dog will be truly happy if you stop the cycle of the never ending cookie supply. A run in the park is way more fun than a cookie; and your dog would totally agree.
If you have decided that it is now time for your dog to loose those extra pounds do it slowly. A fat and unfit dog must start the exercise regime slowly for their safety. Helping your dog to loose weight is very easy, and it is all up to you. Motivation lies on your shoulders alone, hey your dog only eats what you give them; so don't.
If you truly love your dog; don't reach for the cookie jar; make the promise today "no more snacking". Instead reach for their leash and head out for some fun.