India is fast moving to middle-income economy status. With GDP growth of 7.6% and a growing middle class, several traditional practices have been abandoned to accommodate the fast-paced urban life. People have migrated from consuming traditional delicacies to the modern fast foods which are high in calories and frankly less healthy.
As Indians grow ‘fatter’, their pets have tagged along. It was recently reported by the Times of India that vets say about forty percent of the dogs they treat are obese. Top in this category are Golden retrievers, Rottweilers, German shepherds and Labradors.
You probably own one of these and are now wondering if your dog is overweight. Here’s how you can tell
Most vets define an overweight dog as one whose weight is 10 to 15% above the standard weight for the breed. Obesity, on the other hand, occurs when the animal weighs 15 to 25% higher than the ideal weight for the breed. It is recommended that you consult with a veterinarian who will weigh your pet and determine your dog’s Body Condition Score (BCS). This is easy to read chart that comes with examples of how an animal within each ranking would appear and ranks them from 1 to 5. (1-emaciated; 2-thin; 3-moderate; 4-stout; 5-obese).
Most of us want to save on a trip to the vet and would prefer to do simple examinations to know the status of our pets. Here are a few signs that will tell you if your dog is within the ideal weight.
When seen from overhead, your dog should have a visible waist which appears between the start of the back legs and the end of the rib cage. When you softly press along their rib area, you should feel the ribs with a little fat covering. A side view should portray the abdomen tucked up.
Now that you know if your dog is overweight, consult your vet on how you can manage his diet and exercise programs to either get back into a healthy weight or maintain the healthy Body Condition Score.