How to Choose a Weight Management Dog Food
Are you killing your dog by allowing them to be overweight? A weight management dog food might be the way to go…
What would motivate you to help your pet lose weight? Would the promise of a longer, more active, happier life, free of pain and medications, do it? How about the prospect of saving money overall on vet bills?
As a small animal veterinarian, I treat obesity in pets every single day. The truth is that more than half of all pets in the United States are overweight (56% of dogs, 60% of cats). But despite being a common ailment, pet obesity is often a sensitive topic.
Tiptoeing around the subject is part of the territory, but the fact of the matter is that you are killing your dog by allowing obesity to go unchecked. The adverse impact is really that startling and serious.
So what is the answer to this epidemic?
It is simple really – just like in humans, diet and exercise are the keys to weight loss.
So today I want to discuss exactly why our pets are so overweight and how to help our fur babies live their healthiest, longest lives possible through weight management dog food.
3 Common Reasons Your Dog is Overweight
Just like with humans, the number of calories and the quality of food makes a big difference in the weight of your dog.
If you feed your dog too much, your dog will be overweight.
If you use a pet food diet composed of low-quality ingredients filled with sugar, fats, and salt, your dog can gain weight.
Dogs are bred to be active animals. They need to run, play, hunt, and swim.
Humans and dogs have shared their lives together for thousands of years. As we evolved, humans have become increasingly less active, living more sedentary lifestyles. Our dogs have followed suit. Dogs just aren’t getting the kind and amount of exercise they need.
Designate time in your day for high impact exercise that goes beyond daily bathroom break walks. Intense exercise is crucial to maintaining an ideal weight.
Pets may slow down, gain weight, and become less active as they age. It’s a natural progression of life. However, it is important to ensure that these processes are not caused by disease.
Some diseases in pets, like hypothyroidism and Cushing’s disease, result in weight gain.
It’s important to have your pet evaluated annually with blood work to identify any potential diseases as early as possible. Treating disease early may prevent unhealthy weight gain.
Why Choose a High Quality Weight Management Dog Food?
Exercise is definitely important, but the one thing YOU have total control over in helping your pet maintain a healthy weight is DIET.
While the number of calories your pet consumes daily plays a huge role in weight management, the quality of ingredients are just as crucial.
When pets eat foods high in sugar, fats, and salts, they often want more, even if they don’t need more. Sound familiar?
Kibble-based pet food diets often contain high levels of sugar, fats, and salts in order to increase palatability. Your pet grows to crave this food, which can be very dangerous.
Read that again… Our pets can be addicted to processed sugars and fats just like us!
Food is love – it is a huge part of the human-pet bond. And it is unbelievably hard to say NO to your adorable, sweet, loving pup when they seem hungry.
So let’s stop the cycle.
Best Diet Dog Food Ingredients – DOs and DON’Ts
I recommend a high quality, clean, whole food ingredient diet when choosing a weight management dog food diet. These types of diets not only help maintain weight, but also ensure an overall healthy life.
Side By Side Pet Food is a whole food based diet that sources the highest quality ingredients. They do not use any artificial additives, preservatives, colorings, added nutrients, or high levels of sugars and fats to falsely increase palatability.
When designing a weight management program for my pet patients, I always start with switching them over to Side by Side Pet Food. Over the last few years, I have seen incredible weight loss, more energy, and overall improved life in my patients.
Overall, my pet patients lose weight quickly, stop overeating or begging because of cravings, and become much more active.
And it makes sense – when we eat clean and healthy, our cravings subside, we eat less, and we feel great, too!
So let’s take a look at a weight management dog food comparison and see what you need to look for in the best diet dog food:
1. Include Whole Food Ingredients
It is easier to digest and utilize inherent nutrients when consuming foods in their natural form. Feeding your dog a diet made with whole carrots, sweet potatoes, and real meat ingredients is key to managing weight.
2. Limit Fillers Like Pea Protein and Rice
Fillers are exactly what they sound like. Empty calories used to fill your pet up. They may not contain all the nutrients your pet needs, leaving your pet hungry and undernourished.
3. Limit Highly Processed Foods
Highly processed foods, like kibble, can actually slow digestion. And as mentioned previously, these processed diets often contain additives to make them taste better, leading to cravings, begging, and overeating.
Final Thoughts on Choosing the Right Weight Management Dog Food
Maintaining a healthy, recommended weight is one of the most important health decisions you can make for your pet.
I recommend taking them off processed kibble and switching to a high quality, whole food nutrition diet like Side by Side Freeze Dried Patties or Tetra Stew. You will see a remarkable difference in your pet’s overall health and wellness in no time!
Take the guesswork out of knowing the food your furbaby needs with the Side by Side Pet Health Profile assessment. Learn more about how your dog can live a longer, healthier life – plus get $5 off your purchase of $10 or more!