Weight loss in dogs can be looked at from two points of view, just as it can in any other living being. Some weight loss is good, and some weight loss is bad. In this article, we will examine both sides of the coin. Whether your dog has lost weight unexpectedly or needs to lose weight, you will find useful information here. Read on to learn more.
Unexplained weight loss in dogs is always a problem that should be attended to. There can be many reasons for unexplained weight loss. Among them are poor quality food, parasite infestation, tooth problems and various illnesses.
It is important that you feed your dog a good quality of dry food. Many people these days believe you should make your own dog food at home to avoid possible toxins and additives; however, it is very difficult to devise a complete diet for a dog.
It is best to choose a high quality kibble as the base of the diet and add nutritious elements such as fresh meat, liver and so on. Avoid buying cheap, knock-off dog foods, and always read the label on bagged dog food to see where it came from. Ingredients from overseas are often suspect. If at all possible, locate a local source. Often your local feed store will carry a brand that is locally produced. This is best in terms of both quality and support for your local economy.
Be sure to take your dog to the vet annually for a checkup and follow your vet’s advice about parasite control. Internal parasites and external parasites (fleas and ticks) can cause excessive weight loss and distress for your dog.
What if my dog is fat?
Promoting weight loss in dogs is another story. If your dog tends to be overweight, you should still feed a good quality of food; however, you must not free feed. Instead, you should consult your vet to determine the right amount of food for your dog and then institute a regular feeding schedule that adhere’s closely to your vet’s recommendations.
Experiment with low calorie treats for your dog. Some dogs really like raw carrots to chew on and canned green beans and carrots added to their food for bulk. These veggies don’t add a lot of calories to the diet, but they help keep your dog satisfied.
Just like people, dogs need exercise. Be sure to spend some time walking and playing with your dog every day. This helps build your bond and keeps both you and your dog fit and trim. If you have a big dog, you may want to go for bike rides together. If you do this, be sure to hold the leash in your hand rather than attaching it to the bike. In this way, you can prevent having your bike yanked out from under you in the event of a squirrel sighting.
The bottom line when it comes to weight loss in dogs is, whether your dog is too fat or too thin, a high quality diet fed in the right amounts, daily exercise and close consultation with your vet will keep your dog just the right size.
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