A perspective by Gertie Lombardo

Hey Guys! It’s your resident blogger, Gertie Lombardo. You may remember me from my blog about Chihuahua Appreciation Day. Today, I am here to talk to you about pet obesity. It’s no surprise when I tell you that human obesity rates are higher than ever. I suppose you may have heard the notion that pets often resemble their owners and that is reflected in the following statistics:  53% of adult dogs and 55% of adult cats are overweight or obese. How can your owner tell if you are a healthy weight? Your owner should be able to feel your ribs easily when they gently press your sides. Being overweight comes with a host of other health issues.

ChihuahuaAs with our owners, being overweight can affect a pet’s health in many ways. Obesity can result in arthritis, diabetes, high blood pressure, kidney disease, certain cancers, as well as heart and respiratory disease. Obesity can take two years of your four legged friend’s life- that’s like 14-18 human years! I know I would like to live with my owner for as long as I possibly can! She feels the same way and that’s why she had to make some serious decisions last year when Dr. Montgomery recommended that I slim down a bit. I don’t actually eat that much so my mom was hesitant to cut back on my food for fear of malnourishment over time. I was put on a scientifically formulated diet that helps me with safe weight reduction and I didn’t have to cut back on the amount of food I eat!

If you suspect that your pet may be overweight, then it’s time to have a discussion with your veterinarian.  In addition to specially formulated diets, some other things that your pet parent can do to help you lose weight include the following: measure meals appropriately, establish a feeding schedule, limit snacks (I know this is a hard one!), choose low calorie treats, and most importantly, get moving! You might even help your owner drop a few pounds and get healthy like you! As for my weight loss journey, I was told to lose three pounds (hey, that’s a lot for a little Chihuahua) and I am down two. It’s always that pesky last pound that is the hardest to lose! I even got into my old bikini this past summer. Gotta go- time to grab the leash and take my mom for a walk!