Is Fluffy Too “Fluffy”? Getting To A Healthier Weight For Your Pet

cat in cat tree

If you think your cute little butterball looks better with a little extra cushion, you’re not alone. Over 50% of dogs and cats in the US are overweight or obese. 

The problem is, a few extra pounds to a dog or cat is quite a bit of excess weight. Over time, the extra pounds packed on your pet can cause serious health problems and complications that they otherwise wouldn’t have, had they maintained a healthy weight 

Since we want our pets to be the healthiest they can be, while still indulging in the occasional morsel, what’s a well intentioned pet owner to do? Keep reading for ideas from Long Animal Hospital and Emergency Center about how to maintain a healthier weight for your pet.

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Thank Goodness for Canine Rehabilitation!

canine rehabilitation

Physical therapy as a treatment modality was first established after injured soldiers returned from World War I. It wasn’t applied to animals until the 1960s, when sporting horses required medical intervention and support due to exertion, strain, and injury. About 20 years later, the practice of canine rehabilitation began to grow in Europe. In 1996, the American Veterinary Medical Association added “veterinary physical therapy” to its guidelines, and programs for pets have been established ever since at numerous veterinary colleges.

Canine rehabilitation can be a huge part of a dog’s life, and we’re proud to offer our services to the Charlotte community. But how exactly does it work?

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Obesity in Pets

Obesity in pets is one of the biggest threats to pet health. In the United States, over half of the pet population is overweight or obese. Just as in humans, this can lead to health issues such as joint disease, high blood pressure, organ disease, diabetes, and even certain types of cancer. Obesity in pets also negatively impacts quality of life and shortens lifespan.

The good news is that obesity can be managed, and pets can lose weight and become healthier once again. Keep reading for tips on how to tell if your pet is obese and what you can do about it.

Is Your Pet Overweight?

Because pets can accumulate extra weight gradually, you may not even notice that your pet is overweight. To know for sure, we use a tool called a Body Condition Score. This scale is used by veterinarians to standardize the level of a pet’s weight and to formulate a weight loss plan based on lifestyle, age, and breed. Learn more about your pet’s body condition score during their next pet wellness exam. Continue…

More Than Wading: Dog Swimming Safety You Can Count On

Dog swimming safety is vitally important.If your dog truly loves the water, it’s okay to allow them to swim unsupervised as much as they want, right? No way! Sure, there are dogs you probably don’t have to worry about as much as others around the water’s edge, but all pets deserve close observation any time they’re close to a pool, lake, river, or ocean.

This summer, don’t allow dog swimming safety to drift away. Be prepared, stay aware, and prevent water-related accidents or injuries.

No Unrestricted Access

Even dogs with significant skills can find trouble in the water. If you have a pool, pond, or other type of water feature on your property, do not allow your dog to have unrestricted access to it. A fence around it is ideal, and some even have alarm systems that alert you if trespassed.

Similarly, pool or hot tub covers are critical when sharing the backyard with a curious canine. Ramps can come in handy if/when a dog goes in the water and needs help getting out. Train your dog to always exit the water the same way every time, so they can easily remember how to get out. Continue…

A Lot to Chew On: Choosing the Right Pet Treats for Your Furry Friend

pet treatsIf you were able to ask any pet, particularly the family dog, what sort of treats they’d like, you’d probably expect to hear, “All of them!” Unfortunately for our hungry pets, there are certain treats that may not be well-suited for their health and overall well-being. And the fact of the matter is, treats, while a great reward, should be used judiciously.

Since all pet treats are not created equal, what treats are better for our furry friends? Your team at Long Animal Hospital and Emergency Center is here to take the bite out of choosing the right pet treats.

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