Time to Revolutionize Our Pets’ Diets

English Chef Jamie Oliver may be revolutionizing the dietary habits of human beings but someone has to start worrying about the nutrition of our pets.

And that someone is the dog or cat owner, who is the primary reason why Fido and Fifi are overweight.

Just as obesity in people has gripped this nation, pet care professionals are sounding the warning that unless we start paying attention to our animals’ diets, we are going to see more and more of them succumb to preventable diseases caused by being overweight. And those preventable diseases are the same we see in humans – diabetes, respiratory and heart disease, osteoarthritis, high blood pressure and cancer, according to the Association for Pet Obesity Prevention.

The APOP, which conducted a study on animal obesity in 2009, found that more than 45 percent of dogs and 58 percent of cats are estimated to be overweight. “Obesity in dogs and cats is typically defined as 30 percent above normal weight,” says the APOP. Its study can be found at http://www.petobesityprevention.com.

Furthermore, Dr. Jane Bicks, a veterinarian who developed Life’s Abundance Premium Dog & Cat Food, which is a natural holistic dietary approach, asks, “Did you know that it’s a scientific fact than an average size dog should live to 27 years of age and the average cat 30?”

To achieve such longevity, owners first should take their pet to their veterinarian to determine if there is an underlying health reason for the obesity. And if not a health issue, they then should look to themselves to determine the habits into which they have gotten their pets. Often, our dogs and cats are not necessarily hungry, but we think they are, so we feed them another can of food or a handful (and more) of high-calorie treats.

Some pet food makers, like Life’s Abundance, provide a balanced, nutritional diet without chemicals or fillers. “Besides genetics being one of the most important aspects in the lifespan of an animal, nutrition is the other. Nutrition is important from the time of conception to birth, growth and long into the golden years,” says Dr. Bicks.

Proper nutrition and exercise are the keys to a healthier animal. The APOP and the American Animal Hospital Association’s http://www.healthypet.com have useful, practical tips on how to keep your pet’s weight down.

Source by Lisa Costello

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