Diet is essential for weight loss success. While it may be tempting to simply reduce how much we are feeding, this is often not successful. We also need to be careful when cutting the food back as this can restrict important nutrients. There are foods made specifically to help with this. For example, ‘Satiety’ from Royal Canin. These foods have more fiber to help your pet feel fuller, while being lower in calories and nutritionally balanced for weight loss.
Treats can be a way for us to show love and affection to our pets, but it can be easy to over do it. We don’t have to cut out treats completely, but we can look for healthier alternatives and reduce the amount that we give. Ice cubes, carrots, small amounts of apple and other fruit and vegetables are great alternatives.
Just like us, pets benefit from regular exercise. Be consistent and get out there daily!
Weight loss is a gradual process, don’t get discouraged if you’re only seeing small changes. The ideal amount of weight loss is 0.5%-1.0% of body weight per week in cats and 1-2% in dogs. Keep at it, your efforts will make a real difference to the health and happiness of your pet.
Dr Nial Bell BVSc - Pet Vet at Pukekohe Clinic