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Is your dog overweight?

I’ve read somewhere that one only have to look at the size of the dog to know if the owner is getting enough of exercise. If the dog is overweight, then there is a strong indication that the owner is just not exercising enough.
Overweight dogs, just like overweight humans risk developing CAD (heart disease) and joint weakness. The internal organs such as the liver, lungs and heart are constantly under tremedous stress. The heart have to work harder to pump blood to different parts of the body, where the vessels could be partially blocked by chrolestrol deposits.
In Malaysia, it may not be practical to take your dogs out for runs but with a little creativity, you can still plan some exercises that provided significant cardiovascular workout for both you and your dog.

I have 2 dogs- one who is extremely skinny and no matter how much he eats, he does not seemed to put on weight.
My other dog, named Prosbie is really overweight. He weights more than 30kg and my vet had commented that he’s really too fat. However, this cute doggie wins the heart of the family- and even my brother, who is not really an animal lover, have a soft spot for him. So naturally, we would want Prosbie to stay as healthy as he can. I doubt his skinny legs can support his balloning body. He spends most of his free time- yes you’ve probably guess it…. sleeping/napping. So my proposed fitness plan for my dog:
  • bring him to see the vet- to check if he has any illness that we need to be aware of
  • he’s already on a high fibre diet- but does not seems to lose weight. Will do our best to cut down saturated fats from his diet.
  • indoor games- plan to buy a light weight ball and bounce around and chase him around, in an enclosed area -else he will run out of the house. Currently I am using the stability ball which is a bit too big and intimidating for him. He’s probably too old to learn to play fetch.
  • we do not have any pool in the house (can’t afford that) but I am planning to buy a big water storage tank, fill it up with water and get him to swim in it.
  • As for strengthening of his limbs, I am still trying to figure out how to do it. But overall, actively exercising with your dog also ensures that you yourself are getting the exercise. Exercising with pets can be enjoyable and it creates better bonding between the onwer and the pet.
Further reading (in case you are also interested to start a fitness program for your dogs)
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  • Mun June 9, 2008, 8:39 am

    I heard dogs may gain weight too, just like human, when they age, assuming they have minimum physical activities… So, gotto exercise regularly.