Overweight Pets - Getting The Balance Right
42% of adult dogs and cats vaccinated at AlphaPet in the last year were overweight! We measure ‘body condition score’ (BCS) in dogs and cats when we see them for routine health checks; this is similar to the body mass index (BMI) measure in people. It enables us to record a simple number from 1 to 5, with 3 being optimum and 5 being obese.
Obesity in dogs and cats is a serious medical problem, and not so much a cosmetic issue as it is in people. A dog doesn’t care if they look fat; but they do care that they can’t keep up with their friends running around at the park, or that their legs hurt after a long walk, or they can’t breathe properly in hot weather. Being overweight is not only a risk factor for many diseases, but it can also worsen the effects that certain illnesses have on your pet. It has been shown that being overweight shortens a dog’s lifespan and adversely affects their quality of life.
None of us are here to tell you off about your animals weight (not even Richard!); we simply want to help you to get them to a healthy size, so that they can live a happier and longer life. If you would like any further help or advice on this, or just to check what your pet’s body condition score is, please make an appointment for a free weight check.