Direct Line Pet Insurance has performed a survey with 2,100 pet owners and vets to reveal that 1.7 million dog owners (and one million cat owners) have overweight pets, according to their vet.
This suggested 12% of pegs are too big – that’s 4% higher than two years ago.
Pugs are the most likely breed to be overweight, with ¾’s categorised as obese. 2/3’s of Boxers were considered too large, while Golden Retrievers, Staffordshire Bull Terriers, German Shepherds and Spaniels were next.
Obesity in dogs is climbing so swiftly that more and more vets are having to invest in lifting equipment as vets are getting injured when trying to lift heavy pups.
13% of dog owners said they had suffered from a pulled muscle/back injury from lifting an overweight dog, while 42% said they had invested in lifting equipment such as hoists or tables that raised electronically for treatment.
The RSPCA claims that obesity is a “serious welfare issue” that can cause a lot of issues including disabling the animal.
Weight problems are thought to contribute to serious health problems such as diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure, cancer and respiratory distress.
Are you worried your pet is overweight? Check the following:
- Can you see and feel the outline of their ribs?
- Can you see and feel their waist? It should be clearly visible when looked at from above
- Your dog’s tummy should be tucked up when viewed from the side
If you’re concerned about your dog’s weight, talk to your vet who will be able to recommend an appropriate diet and exercise regime.