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Obesity In Dogs

What is Obesity in Dogs? 

Obesity can be defined as an excess accumulation of body  fat that contributes to disease. Dogs that weigh at least  10% above their ideal weight are considered overweight,  while dogs weighing 20% more than ideal are considered  obese. Excess body weight can be a contributing factor in  many diseases. 

What are the Risks Associated with Obesity in Dogs?

Up to 65% of dogs in the United States are considered  overweight or obese. Obesity can contribute to many conditions in dogs, including: 



*Kidney disease 

*Respiratory compromise 

*Decreased exercise and heat tolerance 

*Increased risk of cardiovascular disease 

*Abnormal response to insulin 

*Increased anesthetic risk 

*Decreased quality of life 

Showing love by showering your dog with treats may  actually result in a shortened lifespan and decreased  quality of life if the excess calories result in obesity.

Symptoms of Obesity in Dogs 

Signs of obesity include:

*Weight gain 

*Less energy than usual 

*Decreased exercise tolerance 

A collar or harness that seems tighter than it used to be Being unable to feel the ribs, or seeing a “waistline” (a  small tuck in the belly right in front of the hind legs)

Is My Dog Overweight? 

If you suspect your dog may be overweight, schedule a  weight check and examination with your veterinarian. If  there seems to be excess padding over your dog’s ribs or  you are unable to see a slight tuck-up just in front of the  hind legs, chances are good that your dog is carrying  excess weight. Once ideal weight and condition have been achieved, it is  so important to maintain that weight.

Once again, your  veterinary health care team can help you find appropriate  food and portions for weight maintenance. Keeping your  dog at a healthy weight is one of the important  responsibilities of being a pet owner.  

Gail Moscato 


Positive Paws BHC 


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