Charity Warns of Increase in Pet Obesity

Is Fido piling on the pounds? Animal charity, the PDSA, warns that obesity has become vets’ number one concern for dogs.

The latest PDSA Animal Wellbeing (PAW) Report discovered that six million dogs in the UK exercise outside the home or garden for only an hour or less a day. Lack of activity can lead to obesity which may contribute to life-shortening health problems such as heart disease and diabetes.

Dogs aren’t the only pets struggling to beat the bulge. Many of the country’s furry companions are seeing similar problems. Rabbits – the nation’s third most popular pet – are getting larger, reported the PDSA. The charity claimed that 89 percent of owners still feed their bunnies carrots, although the high-sugar treats should only be offered occasionally.

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So, how is the industry tackling pet obesity? Many pet store retailers already stock foods that support weight loss. Veterinary experts are offering advice, and often specialist clinics, to tackle pets’ growing waistlines. The PDSA is also doing its bit for the health of the country’s animals. It has launched its annual Pet Fit Club competition and is urging the owners of Britain’s biggest pets to help their companions regain a healthy weight.

Nicola Martin, PDSA Head of Pet Health and Welfare, said: ‘Over the past decade, Pet Fit Club has transformed the lives of some of the UK’s most obese pets, having helped nearly 100 animals shed over 60 stone so we are welcoming entries again and offering our expertise.’ If your customers are interested in taking part send them to www.petfitclub.org.uk before April 26.

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