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According to a survey conducted by the Association of Pet Obesity Prevention in May 2014, more than half, which is 54% to be specific, of pet dogs in the US are obese or overweight. This means that a whopping number of dogs weigh 30% more than the average ideal body, which exposes them to numerous health issues like diabetes, joint pains, heart problems, digestive and reproductive problems.Among these potential health issues, diabetes is the most prevalent one. In fact, a report by Banfield Pet Hospital shows that for every 10,000 dogs in the US, 23.6 are diagnosed with diabetes between 2006 and 2015, indicating a 79.7 percent in the number of cases. This may come as a surprise but unfortunately, numbers don’t lie. It is time we pay more attention to healthy and holistic pet care – how we groom and train them as well as what we feed them. If we keep up with this trend of neglecting our pets, obesity will increase, and with it, a huge array of health complications.So how exactly does obesity cause diabetes
- And what do I have to do to prevent it?Firstly, when your pet dog is overweight or obese, there is a larger amount of tissue in his body, accompanied by other bodily changes. These changes start a mechanism that releases fat molecules into the blood stream, which in turn affect insulin responsive cells, finally making the body much less sensitive to insulin. If you did not know, insulin is a hormone secreted by the pancreas that regulates bodily sugar level. So evidently, this reduced sensitivity to insulin causes sugar levels to rise, leading to diabetes or ‘diabetes mellitus’.In simpler terms, eating too much and exercising too little are the major causes of obesity. So to make sure that your furry friend is at a stable and healthy weight, instill a habit of eating healthy and on time, balanced with regular physical exercises and activities. More often than not, it is not so much what you feed them, but how much you feed them. Remember to give only a healthy amount, and avoid feeding your dog your leftovers. Play time or an evening run every day is essential too in order to achieve a balanced life for your pet.So what is the solution?
In case your beloved pooch is already obese, it is still possible for him to gradually shed some weight. Try feeding him two third of the recommended daily suitable diet until your pet reaches a healthy and acceptable body weight. You could also consult a vet to prescribe daily meals and to monitor your pet dog’s weight.