There's an Obesity Epidemic Among America's Dogs


It’s only natural that, being a nation of fatties, our lifestyle is directly reflected on our pets. More than half of American dogs are overweight, according to the Association for Pet Obesity Prevention, and while it might be kind of cute, it’s definitely not healthy.

Just like with humans, canine obesity puts dogs at a heightened risk for diabetes, high blood pressure, arthritis, and respiratory diseases, so vets are advising that their patients be put on strict diet and exercise regimens. After all, dogs tend to be overweight because of “lazy owners who confuse food with affection and attention.”

“Dogs today have butlers and maids,” Cesar Millan said. “They don’t hunt for their food anymore, but they should work for food.”

It also has to do with a carb-heavy diet. Dogs apparently don’t really possess a need for carbs unless they are pregnant or nursing. Ideally, they should be on a raw-foods diet, which actually means “a whole rabbit…or a whole squirrel for a fox terrier” which is completely disgusting.

What’s sad is that fat dogs have less of a chance of being adopted.

Indigo Ranch in Vernonia, Ore., is a kennel that offers what it calls a doggy fat camp. The camp began about two years ago, shortly after a county shelter contacted Indigo Rescue, the nonprofit rescue organization financed by Indigo Ranch, about a 3-year-old Lab aptly named Butters. At 142 pounds, he was considered unadoptable and was about to be euthanized, said Heather Hines, the director of Indigo Ranch…
…About five months after he arrived, he had slimmed to 84 pounds.
“He didn’t know he could run or jump until he lost the weight,” Ms. Reed said.

Poor Butters.

Image via WilleeCole/Shutterstock

Roll Over? Fat Chance [NYT]

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