Keeping your pet at a healthy weight is difficult. In fact, over half of all dogs and cats in the United States are overweight or obese. This is a serious health issue that can lead to a variety of problems, some of which can be fatal. Fortunately, this is an issue that can be mitigated or solved with a few changes to your pet’s diet, daily routine, and some exercise. Here are three tips for keeping your pet at a healthy weight.
#1: Calculate the number of calories your pet needs each day
Instead of feeding your pet the suggested amount on the food bag, figure out the actual number of calories they need each day with the help of a cat or dog calorie calculator. Once you have calculated how many calories your pet needs, you can compare that to how many calories are in each portion of canned or dry food. Take the total number of calories your pet needs each day, then divide that into two or three meals to ensure your four-legged friend eats the correct amount they need to stay healthy.
#2: Feed your pet using a food puzzle
A food puzzle is an excellent alternative to a boring dish, plus it provides enrichment opportunities to keep your pet mentally and physically engaged. A rubber Kong is a popular option since you can stuff it with your pet’s daily meals and freeze it overnight for longer-lasting enjoyment. If your pet struggles with a Kong, try a LickiMat as a food puzzle for canned food, or create your own puzzle from items you have at home.
#3: Keep your pet’s treats to 10% of their daily calories
When your furry pal turns their begging gaze upon you, it’s difficult to say no, but treats should be kept to 10% of their daily calories. Commercially produced treats are generally high in fat, sugar, and calories, so even a small number of treats can add up quickly. Choose healthier treat options, like fresh fruit and veggies or morsels of lean meat.
Are you unsure how much to feed your pet to help them maintain a healthy weight? Contact our team for assistance.