Obesity in dogs and cats, what to do and how to control it?

Seeing a cat or dog fatter than normal is sweet for some owners, but the truth is that these pets may be suffering from overweight or obesity. These dangerous diseases are suffered by more than half of the world’s canine population and are responsible for degenerating their health more quickly and preventing them from prolonging their lives for a longer time.

It is vitally important to remember that the first step in making a diagnosis is to see a professional. The veterinarian will guide you and define the nutritional plan to follow if he considers it necessary.

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Liliana Rodríguez, a specialized veterinarian, told EL TIEMPO that “currently we can find in the veterinary market companies that manufacture concentrates or medicated diets specialized in different pathologies. Within the concentrates for the treatment of obesity, we find light concentrates, low in calories, weight control and reduction. Barf diets, raw or semi-raw homemade diets can be made, which must be strictly advised by a nutritionist”.

Thus, a patient who has between 10% and 19% of adipose tissue above the ideal body weight is diagnosed as overweight. If it exceeds 20%, it should be considered an obese pet.

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In the event that the veterinarian determines that the cause of overweight is a pathology that is altering the body condition of the animal, the corresponding analysis and treatment will be carried out. If this is not the case, it will open the way to a diagnosis regarding diet and physical activity.

It is becoming more and more common to find this pathology.

Obesity in these pets It is mainly due to overfeeding at an early age. In addition, episodes of stress, abrupt changes in the environment or an episode of nerves can lead the animal to eat more than usual.

Keep in mind that each food package has nutritional information and the recommended portion for the dog or cat on the back.

Some experts say that raw food can be harmful to pets.

Obesity that is not treated can degenerate cardiovascular, renal, hormonal and even osteoarticular functionsr , which can trigger knee, hip, spine problems, among others.

The study ‘Prevalence of obesity in Canis lupus familiaris Linnaeus’, from the University of Caldas, revealed that not all dogs are equally prone to this disease, because “they are the canines of the Beagle breeds , Labrador, Pinscher, Pitbull, Poodle and mestizo the most susceptible to obesity; as well as adult animals, followed by senile ones.” the researchers stated.


In Regarding this factor, Dr. Pilar Reyes, a specialist in internal medicine, states that, “if we do not have any predisposing disease, it is based on a balanced diet which meets the daily metabolic requirements of the pet associated with directed physical activity”.

The recommended daily physical activity for dogs is 20 to 60 minutes, without exceeding it and without subjecting them to extreme climates.

In addition to the most common errors, the professional asserts that “it is the lack of knowledge of pre-existing diseases and most importantly, acquiring diets not directed or supervised by a veterinary doctor”.

These controls verify if the pet followed the recommendations, such as increased physical activity and portioning of food.