Losing weight is not a struggle only for humans. Studies show the rate of obesity in dogs is rising each year. As pet owners, it is our responsibility to not only provide our dogs with nutritional diets but also help them to maintain a healthy weight. Eating high-quality foods and maintaining a lifetime of the proper weight is critical for fighting and preventing disease as your dog ages.
Exercise tops the list of things to do to increase your dog's metabolism and to help them lose weight. But what do you do in the wintertime when it is cold outside, and your dog cannot get out to play as often as they do when the weather is warm? Here are some ways you can help your dog lose weight from the comfort of your home. Don't forget outdoor training, though. Getting outside can benefit both of you over the chilly winter months. A brisk walk on a sunny day or a game of snowball fetch in the backyard will be welcomed by your pooch.
Starting with a high-quality diet, your dog's health highly depends on the foods offered. Increasing your dog’s fresh vegetables can help fight disease as well as fill their tummy with nutritious vitamins and minerals from delicious foods. Green foods such as broccoli and spinach can increase the amount of fiber in your dog's system, which will help with weight loss. Nutritious vitamin-packed carrots, green beans, or fresh fruits such as berries and apples can also increase the amount of fiber your dog is receiving in their diet as well as give your dog a feeling of being full without high-calorie processed foods.
Calculating and Measuring Meals
One of the easiest ways to help your dog lose weight is to limit what they eat. Talk to your veterinarian to get recommendations for high-quality foods to offer your dog. Your veterinarian can also advise on amounts to feed your dog each day, as well as how many times a day you should be providing food. Do not free-feed your dog. Schedule exact times for meals. Moreover, measure with a measuring cup and know how much to give your dog of processed dog food. The age of your dog, their breed, gender, and whether your dog is spayed or neutered will be factors in considering how much food to give your dog each day. Calculating your dog’s needs will help you measure the proper amounts to give your dog for each meal.
Dogs enjoy special treats. If you are looking to help your dog lose weight with minimal exercise because the winter months are brutal, be sure you are offering healthy treats when your dog is ready for a snack or for special rewards. Snacking on fruits and vegetables is an excellent way to avoid extra processed foods and extra calories for your dog. Easy to give treats such as carrots, blueberries, or all-natural beef or fish treats can minimize your dog’s calorie intake throughout the day. Understand your dog will work for just about anything. Even large breed dogs will do tricks, listen, and obey for the tiniest morsel of food. Watch the size of tidbit you are offering your dog. Give small pieces and only when necessary, such as rewarding for good behavior as well as listening and obeying commands.
The Perfect Time to Practice New Routines
Like humans, dogs tend to pack on extra weight during the winter months. Without daily exercise outside, it can be tough to get a more sedentary dog to lose extra pounds. The winter months are a great time to start focusing on the diet and foods you offer your dog. Train yourself over the winter months to calculate and measure your dog’s food, offer the right foods, and follow your veterinarian’s recommendations. Offer unique and tasty but nutritious treats as rewards for good behavior. Carrying these habits throughout the rest of the year will help improve and maintain your dog’s overall health!