Obesity is an accumulation of excess fat in the body as a result of an energy (calorie) intake which exceeds requirements. You should have already learned from The Dog Health & Nutrition Handbook that overeating has numerous consequences-of which excessive weight is one (the others being the signs of discharge as outlined in the ‘Dog Health & Nutrition Handbook’). Obesity tends to occur in the dog which is less active physically whereas the active dog will tend to discharge the excess. Obesity is associated with shortened lifespan, disease of the heart, lungs, liver, kidneys, rheumatism and arthritis. The overweight animal cannot tolerate warm weather, is less able to exercise and will generally have less fun than a lean, healthy pet.
Many owners are surprised when they are told that their pet is overweight. The easiest way to tell is by feeling the ribcage. The ribs should be easily and clearly felt with little flesh between the fingers when you pinch the skin. Specialist or veterinary diets for weight control are usually high in fibre (cellulose which is indigestible plant material) to reduce the digestibility of the food. These foods are an expensive way of producing faeces. Burns Weight Control+ recipe for dogs can be helpful in the control of obesity. Oats have a higher fibre than rice which means that the higher fibre level is due to the food ingredients themselves rather than an 'additive'.
Like the other Burns adult formulations, Burns Weight Control+ is low in fat and protein. The high digestibility means that the dog can feel satisfied by a small volume of food. Burns is intended to ensure excellent general health and part of that is ensuring the weight is correct. Management of obesity in dogs is by feeding Burns Weight Control+ according to the Burns feeding programme. Vegetables (cooked and raw) can safely be included to help fill the dog if you think that is needed. It is important to check the weight regularly to ensure that the weight reduction programme is on course. It is better to lose weight slowly than rapidly - 1/2 lb per week for a small dog up to 2lb a week for a large dog.
Testimonial from Rosemary Johnson writing in the Norfolk Terrier Newsletter
"It was good to find the newsletter waiting for me when I got back from a short holiday in Galloway. Mungo had great fun bathing in the sea, galloping across the beach and chasing rabbits! He has lost 2lbs and is much better for it. All this achieved quite painlessly by putting him onto Burns complete dried food-I've discovered, developed by a vet in South Wales. I had Mungo on smaller and smaller amounts of *********Light, but he just did not lose any weight. Burns has less protein and less fat, and on 3oz as suggested, the weight should stabilise. Other improvements I have noticed are clean ears (no waxy build-up), clearer eyes, super glossy coat, sweeter breath and no doggy smell! I really do recommend it and wish more people would try it."