We’re not the only ones who have to watch our weight in order to stay healthy. We need to be aware of what we feed our companion animals in order to keep them healthy as well. Excess weight on both dogs and cats can lead to numerous health problems including joint disorders, heat intolerance, difficulty breathing, digestive disorders, arthritis, heart problems, diabetes and even increased risk of certain types of cancer.

Here are some ways to prevent these problems from occurring.

Use a measuring cup and measure the proper amount of food before serving. (Make sure, of course, not to underfeed them as well!) It’s usually listed on the bag according to your pet’s size and weight. If you’re using a special diet, or mixing food that you prepare yourself, be sure to ask your vet about the correct amount that you should be serving daily. Keep in mind that by giving your pet the proper daily amount, you can allow for snack-time and treats too, so that your pet remains healthy and happy.

Make sure to give your dog and cat plenty of exercise. Walk your dog daily and provide plenty of play activity in a safe, enclosed area. Most dogs love playing fetch and cats love to play with toys. Cats also enjoy chasing something as simple as a string. Be creative and have fun with your pet at the same time.

Most importantly, have your pet checked by your vet to make sure he or she is in overall good health. A special diet or a change of diet may be required.

Reported By: Nan Talleno, KYW Newsradio’s Pet Reporter

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