by Sojos | August 15, 2012
Pet obesity has been getting a lot of notice in recent years, as our four-legged buddies’ waistlines expand right along with those of many humans. And just as in humans, diet and exercise are the two key factors in how your pet gains - or doesn’t gain - weight.
Not all pet owners face the problem of overweight animals, though, so the issue of maintaining a healthy weight for your pet applies just as much to critters that might be underweight. In either case, an unhealthy weight can lead to health problems and even a shortened lifespan. Finding that middle balance of ideal weight and muscle mass is something that we spend a lot of time thinking about at Sojos, so we can offer some tips on how to keep your pet in shape.
First, it’s important that you are properly assessing your dog’s ideal weight. Generally speaking, on a dog with a short coat, if you can see a few of the ribs on his rib cage – the last two or three, depending on the breed – his weight is ideal. If your dog has a long coat that prevents you from seeing his ribs, you should be able to feel the shape of his ribs, with a thin layer of fat over them. If you can see your dog’s spine, he needs to put on a few pounds. If you can’t see or feel his ribs, your dog is likely overweight.
Looking at your dog from the side, you should be able to see the curve of his ribcage and a tuck up to the abdomen. An overweight dog will have very little or no tuck. If you see extra fatty rolls on your dog’s back, where his tail starts, it’s another good indicator of excess weight.
If your pet is overweight, switching to a raw diet can help. As you make the transition to a Sojos product, whether it’s raw dog food or raw cat food, you’ll likely notice that an overweight pet will naturally start to trim up. It’s important to remember that even as you see that change, Sojos foods are designed to deliver the full complement of nutrients that your pet needs for optimum health. If you’re eager to see more weight loss in your pet, try adding some more exercise to his daily routine - avoid feeding less than the recommended amount for your pet’s weight, as listed on the back of our bags.
If your pet is underweight, here are some options that your pet will love. If you’re feeding Sojos Turkey Complete or Sojos Beef Complete, you can add Sojos Original to his meals, which features high-quality grains like rolled oats, rye flakes and barley flakes. You can also add healthy human-grade foods that support adding weight, like cottage cheese and yogurt. Table scraps aren’t a bad thing for your pet - as long as they’re healthy, whole foods that are as good for you as they are for him. It’s important to keep up a slender pet’s exercise routine even as you’re working to add a bit of weight. Keeping his heart and body healthy through activity is still of the utmost importance.
If you’re not seeing the results you hope for, talk to a holistic vet. Overweight or underweight can be signs that there’s something else amiss with your pet, and a holistic vet can help you determine what’s going on and how to treat the problem in a way that’s most compatible to your pet’s system.