With the COVID-19 pandemic affecting the entire world, dogs have had fewer opportunities for exercise and have been spending more time with their owners, who are often inclined to spoil them. Ensuring your canine friend is in good physical condition and has a healthy diet is imperative for their long-term health. We have put together some top tips for helping your dog lose weight and stay fit and healthy.

Diet

The most imperative thing to manage when ensuring that your dog is not overweight is its diet. Many people give their dog too many treats and the leftovers of their own dinner. If you are worried about your dog's weight or they are overeating, you can always speak to your vet. It may be helpful to place your dog on a veterinary diet, ensuring they are receiving the right nutrients without those unhealthy extras.

Exercise

Ensuring that your canine friend is getting enough exercise is crucial to their health. You should be walking your dog at least once a day and ideally in surroundings that allow them to run for an extended period off their lead. It is natural for a dog to spend the majority of their day running around and, when they are not, it can cause them to gain a lot of weight. Making time to exercise your dog is not only beneficial to their health, but it will ensure that you are fitter and healthier too. Due to lockdowns, it has been difficult to justify leaving the house more than once at times and this means that your dog will not have been getting as much exercise as they are supposed to. As restrictions ease, we can start to get back to normal and out on those all-important walks.

Is your dog getting older and no longer enjoying walks like it used to? Take a look at our <a href="https://www.vetimagesolutions.co.uk/blog/exercising-your-senior-dog">top tips for exercising older dogs</a> to keep your canine healthy as they age!

Treats

As many people have been working from home, they have been spending more time with their dogs than they normally would and eating more meals around their canines than normal. This means that the number of treats dogs will be given from their owners has inevitably risen. These small treats on a daily basis can have a dramatic effect over a long period of time and it is often excessive treat-giving that causes a dog to be overweight. Luckily, there are now low-fat dog treats available, so you can treat your dog without causing unhealthy weight gain. However, it is still important to monitor how many treats your dog receives. Consider reserving treat giving for a certain time of day, or after your dog displays good behaviour or completes a trick.

If your dog is struggling to lose weight, over or under eating or appearing lethargic during walks, it is best to seek medical advice. Get in touch with your vet for advice and support for caring for your pet.

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