It’s a Dog’s Life – Are We Overfeeding Our Pets?

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Picture by Engin Akyurt

YouDriveHealth 2 March 2020

The indicators that affect our human lifestyle are now impacting on our pets, with 51% of dogs and 44%of cats now classified as obese according the PFMA research.

We know that according the ONS that by 2026 67% of the UK human population will be classified as obese. In the last few days the mortality rate has worsened again down to lifestyle choices.

The PFMA.org  surveyed veterinaries who indicated that they had see a significant increase in pet obesity in the last five years. They also reported increases in diabetes and cancer cases, as well as increased heart and respiratory problems.
It seems that there is a link between human obesity increasing and obesity in pets. We are overeating, and it appears we are also overfeeding our pets.

It was also noticed that pets are not getting the regular exercise that is required to keep them fit and healthy. Just like us humans – we also suffer from a lack of fitness.

We are effectively killing our pets with kindness.

A staggering and sad statistic is that 10% of pets are destroyed immediately upon diagnosis of diabetes (yet this is a managed illness) due to unknown reasons at the request of the owner. It could be the cost, the need to inject and manage the food or it’s just too inconvenient.

The average cost of a vet procedure claim is over £757 which has increased by 75% over the last 10 years, whilst insurance premiums have only increased by 55% according to the ABI.

An estimated 67% of dogs and 84% of cats are still uninsured.

The key thing to remember is that this is 2020, and the figures are going to get worse especially as pets get older. As with human obesity this has less effect when you are younger, but the hidden problems start to develop when we get older. The same principle applies with our pets.


Do you check the weight of your pet?

Do you control the food intake and check the kibble bag content? Like human foods some of the cheaper brands contain products that will make your pet gain weight. 

Some pets, just like humans are more susceptible to put on more weight than others. We know those people who can eat like a gannet and not put an ounce on and then there are those who only need to look at a cream cake and a kilo is added to the waistline. Follow the veterinary guidance on obesity.

Do you know people who have fat pets, have you ever said you’re killing them with kindness and reducing their life?

Do you have any tips regarding diets for pets?

We would welcome your views and ideas.

YouDrive thinks:

It’s just a shame – we all to pamper our pets but in reality we’re not doing them any favours.

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