If your pet is looking a little too pampered lately – particularly around the belly – you may want to consider altering their diet and exercise routine to get them back to looking slim and trim.
With the RSPCA estimating that between 22 and 24 per cent of cats and dogs are overweight or obese, the first thing to do is to take a look at a weight guide to see if your furry friend is among them. Another good indication as to whether your pet is on the heavy side is to feel their ribs – if you can’t feel their ribs because of a thick layer of fat, then you may need to cut back on the treats.
For some pets, exercise is a key element that’s missing from their daily routine. Whilst it’s usually quite easy to monitor a dog’s exercise, the task can be trickier with cats, which don’t require daily walks. However, whether you own a dog or cat, monitoring their fitness levels can be quite a challenge if you have a busy lifestyle.
If you struggle to take your dog for a long walk during the week, try taking short evening or morning walks, making time at the weekend for a longer walkies session. Rather than opting for the same old local park, why not try a new route to mix things up? If you’re going for a walk in bad weather, you may want to bring a doggy towel along – it may not be a fashion forward statement piece, but a doggy towel will allow you to quickly dry your pet so that they don’t drench you (or your car’s interior) after a workout session. A doggy towel also comes in handy when washing your furry friend.
As research has shown that overweight pets are more likely to have overweight owners, it may be good to combine your own exercise plan with that of your dog. If you’re a gym fan but don’t like running outdoors (or don’t have time for extra exercise) you can always hire a personal trainer for your pooch to ensure that they’re getting the run-around they need.
Outdoor cats are slightly more difficult to monitor than indoor cats and dogs. Whilst investing in some of our healthy pet products might help, like humans, cats need a combination of healthy food and exercise. If your cat is young or easily trained, you can purchase a harness (the height of four-legged fashion) and encourage them to go for short walks. Alternatively, the easiest way to get your feline friend active is to keep plenty of toys around – cats will amuse themselves with all sorts of toys (and burn calories in the process!) ranging from simple balls of yarn to plushies.
Of course, it’s also important to evaluate how you’re feeding your pets. Giving attention can be better for their waistline than indulging them with edible treats – a cuddle or a scratch can be just as good for rewarding good behaviour. You could also try some of our pet diet products, which include healthy supplements and probiotic treats.
Finally, however you choose to keep your pet fit and healthy, it must become part of a routine. Daily exercise, treats in moderation and our healthy pet products can all help your furry friend to stay in shape. Remember: looking after your pet now means that you’ll have longer to enjoy their company in the future.