Take Advantage of Springtime’s Warmth to Exercise Outdoors With Fido
Enjoying a day by the fireplace is slowly being replaced with open windows and spring cleaning. The warmer seasons are arriving! It’s time to put some emphasis on exercise for the entire family, including the dog. If a Lakewood family has a concern about their dog’s weight and health, spring is the right time to turn this issue into a solution with extra exercise and fun outings. Learn all about assessing the pup’s weight and how to deal with it. The great outdoors is the ticket to a healthier dog in no time.
Know That Weight Isn’t an Indicator
Many pet owners personify their dogs, so they place them on the vet’s weight scale as a sure way to verify an obesity problem. Humans use the weight scale as a gauge for their health. It would make sense that the same strategy applies to dogs. In reality, a dog’s weight isn’t the best way to determine if it’s obese or not.
As a dog training professional might suggest, every dog has a unique mixture of bone density, muscles and other tissues. Some breeds are simply heavier set than others. Don’t rely on numbers for weight indications.
Try to Visually Inspect the Pup
A clever and more precise way to check up on Fido’s weight is by inspecting its shape. Regardless of the breed, every dog should have a defined waist. Most breeds have a lean shape just below the rib cage.
Take a look at the pup from behind as it runs over to a dog daycare professional, for example. The belly area shouldn’t hang down to the ground or swing from side to side. If either of these issues are present, the dog needs to lose some weight.
Employ the Finger Test
The back of a person’s hands has thin skin over delicate bones. This same construction should accompany a dog’s ribs. The bones should be the prominent feature. If there’s more fat than bones in these areas, the pup is definitely overweight.
The same finger test can be used on the hips. By pressing on the hip joint, the dog’s pointy bones should be apparent to Lakewood pet owners. Fatty deposits in this area can add up, which signifies that the pup is overweight.
Read up on Dog-Food Ingredients
The first step to combating weight gain is examining the pet’s food. Dog training professionals might suggest a grain-free diet. Many foods today have starchy fillers. The extra grains only lead to weight gain. There’s no real nutrition in the fillers.
Grain-free products feature protein-rich components. Dogs evolved as carnivores, so it makes sense to feed them meat products. Ideally, families want proteins, fruits and vegetables listed on the food label. Chemicals and confusing terms shouldn’t be part of every meal.
Portion the Meals
Families can eliminate a lot of the weight by following a dog daycare professional’s strategy. Portion each meal according to the pup’s age, goal weight and lifestyle cues. Dog food comes with recommended volumes listed on the nutrition label. It’s critical to follow these instructions so that the proper nutrition is part of a daily diet.
Giving the dog too much food is often the source of extra weight. Although the pup has an adorable look on its face, refrain from giving it a lot of food. It only harms them in the end.
Start Moving More
One of the best ways to control Fido’s shape is by getting it moving. Play fetch, jog at the beach or go hiking. Spring is full of fun, outdoor activities. Getting moving in any capacity will melt the fat away. Simply keep water on hand in order to keep the pup hydrated and happy. The entire family ends up with healthier bodies in the end.
Keep the Treats Under Control
Giving dogs treats is fun for everyone. However, the giving spirit may turn out to be too many calories. Talk to everyone in the family about treats for the pup. There may be confusion about the number of treats given in a day. Consider a treat bowl that’s located away from the pup but holds a day’s worth of goodies. When the pet returns home from dog daycare, a treat can be given without any issue. An empty treat bowl means that the dog has had every item allowed for the day.
Consult With a Vet
Families might take all of the applicable steps toward getting Fido in shape, but the weight still remains. Consider the help of a Golden veterinarian. It’s possible that an underlying disease may be contributing to the weight gain.
Older dogs, for example, might have arthritis that holds them back during runs or playtime. The vet can give the family some ideas about how to control the weight while dealing with the underlying issue. In many cases, losing weight might alleviate some problems with the ailment too.
Work With Training Professionals
A clever supplement to family fun with the pup is adding in dog training with a qualified expert. Contacting a training facility and signing up for classes gives the pup another outlet for exercise. The training classes are designed for fun and canine control. Family dogs end up with better behavior, stellar listening skills and leaner physiques.
Weekly classes are all that it takes to get started. The family can take part too, which solidifies bonding between every person and canine friend.
Being a healthier family means changing lifestyle choices for everyone. The family dog will acclimate to the food portions and extra exercise. Golden families can continue this active lifestyle throughout the year. When winter’s chill arrives again, alternative exercises can be the goal. Maintaining a healthy weight improves everyone’s quality of life, including the family dog.