Give your pets enough treats and your adorably, fluffy companion may soon be obese. Studies have shown that obesity in pets is a rising epidemic, with many pet owners unaware of the resulting health problems.
According to the Association for Pet Obesity Prevention, or APOP, pet obesity is an expanding epidemic. APOP’s fifth annual veterinary survey, taken in 2011, shows 53 percent of adult dogs and 55 percent of cats were overweight or obese. This means that about 88.4 million dogs and cats need to lose weight.
However, getting your cute little fluffy companion to lose weight may be hard at first, especially when your pet’s cherubic face is looking up at you from the dinner table, begging for scraps; but there’s comes time when pet owners have to learn to say no and take better care of their pets or they’d have to confront a host of health problems.
They include arthritis due to increased stress on limbs and joints, diabetes mellitus (type 2 diabetes) caused by peripheral insulin resistance from high levels of body fat, cardiac and respiratory disease from increased fat surrounding the chest wall and airways, early mortality, skin infections due to increased skin folds and hair matting due to the inability to properly groom, increased anesthesia and surgical risks, exercise intolerance and the inability to dissipate heat predisposing the pet to heat stroke, he said.
Pet owners, take heed, and start taking better care of your pets. You wouldn’t want to lose your fluffy companion over something that is easily preventable.