Fat Dog: Getting Your Overweight Dog In Shape
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Fat Dog: Getting Your Overweight Dog In Shape

You may think the chubby dogs are adorable just the way they are, but the truth is they could already be at risk for multiple health problems. As responsible pet-parents, we must make sure that our furry friend is in shape.

You can seek your vet’s counsel on your dog’s ideal weight, as a rule of thumb, 15% above that weight is obese; zero to 15% is overweight. If your dog falls into either category, they are not alone. According to a 2011 study, 53% of dogs are overweight or obese and the majority of pet owners are either unaware or in denial of the very real danger, this poses to their beloved companions. A quick way to assess whether your dog is overweight or obese at home is to ask:

  1. Does your dog have an hour-glass shape when you stand behind them and look down?
  2. Do they have a waist when your look from the side?
  3. Can you easily feel their ribs?

If your answer to these questions is no, then your dog needs to shed some of his weight. 

Here are some tips for helping your dog shed some of his extra pounds and maintain a good body condition:

 1) Feeding the right amount: Dogs gain weight the same way humans do, by eating too much and exercising too little and food is far by the most important factor in reducing your dog’s weight. We have to get specific about how much we should feed our pets which is determined by the number of calories your dog needs per day. Many factors will influence your dog’s dietary needs, including breed, size, age, etc.

2)  Feeding in small portions

Taking your dog’s total daily ration and dividing it up into three to six portions can be helpful as small meals require energy to digest which can burn calories.

3) Cut down on meat

Meat and meat-based products contain a high amount of energy and fats which can lead to obesity and obesity-related diseases. Increase the number of fruits, vegetables, grains, and legumes consumed, while decreasing usual reliance on animal protein. Plant-based ingredients are high in fiber, which is not absorbed into our bloodstream. So some of the weight of these plant foods does not translate into calories absorbed and at the same time keeps your dog’s tummy full. Do not worry about the “protein” content, certain plant-based ingredients are also a rich source of protein, it is all about choosing the right ones. 

4)  Keep your eye on the treats

Another way to help your dog shed some extra weight is by controlling and reducing, their treat intake. Treats should comprise no more than, 10% of total daily calories. It’s better to go for your dog’s favorite fruits and vegetables as a treat instead of meaty or treat with high calorie and fat content (it should be a rare treat) which can promote your dog’s health. 

5) Don’t associate your love for your dog with food

If you’re overweight dog whines and cries for his tasty and high-fat treats or food, stay firm. You have to be strong and not give in to their begging. It is about their health and you know what’s right.

Never associate your love for your dog with food, you will always end up feeding them wrong which can cost you their health. Instead show your love by taking them out for a walk, playing and cuddling with them, and giving them tasty but healthy treats. 

 6) Exercise 

Keep in mind food is important, but no weight loss plan is complete without exercise. It is recommended to consult your vet about the activities that best suit your dog based on their breed, age, and current physical condition. It is important to make sure that your overweight dog is not put into too vigorous or too repetitive activities suddenly, as this can put your dog at risk of joint problems. Your dog’s joints are already handling the burden of excess fat, putting your dog into strenuous activities can add even more burden on their joints. Start with short intervals of walking, like 20 minutes twice a day, and slowly increase it to one hour. If you’re already exercising, try lengthening your walk or other activity by 10-20%. If you see your dog panting or breathing heavily, it’s better to stop there and allow them some rest and water. Also, take into consideration the weather conditions. If you live in hot weather conditions then it is better to take your dog out for a walk in the early morning or late in the evening. This will prevent heatstroke and burnt paw pads in your dog. You can also opt for indoor exercises and activities. 


Still not losing? Maybe it’s medical

If cutting out unhealthy snacks and table scraps, serving healthy dog food, increasing physical activity, and medication doesn’t do the trick, an underlying health condition likely triggered the weight gain. A visit to the vet can rule out a medical condition. Your vet will look for low thyroid levels, hormonal imbalances, such as Cushing’s disease, an excess of adrenal hormones.

7)  Be patient

People usually rush weight loss but it is a long process and requires patience. Aim for gradual weight loss and expect a significant improvement to take several months. Work with your veterinarian to create a weight loss schedule based on the appropriate calories so that your dog doesn’t lose weight too fast, which is unhealthy.


Just like people, overweight and obese dogs can face multiple health-related issues and devastating consequences like trouble breathing, greater risk for heatstroke, pancreatitis, diabetes, orthopedic concerns, compromised immune system, reduction in life span mammary tumors, skin conditions, heart problems, and high blood pressure. It is very important to maintain your dog’s weight to avoid health related concerns and pains they might go through in future because of obesity.  Our pets depend on us for their life decisions and it is our responsibility to make the right ones to promote their health and wellbeing. 


At Freshwoof, we are committed to providing high-quality nutritious veg dog food that put your dog’s health above all.

  1. Formulated by Veterinary Nutritionists - Freshwoof Plant Power is formulated by a team of experienced Veterinary Nutritionists to contain all the essential nutrients in right amounts and perfect ratios to support your dog’s overall vitality & health.
  2. Premium Plant-Based Ingredient - Our recipes are crafted with a variety of wholesome & human Grade plant-based ingredients. We use fresh vegetables, grains, berries, fruits, and herbs to ensure your dog gets all the necessary nutrients.
  3. Supports Strong Bones & Immunity - Freshwoof is enriched with bone health supporting nutrients like calcium, vitamin D3, vitamin E, Phosphorous, magnesium & manganese.
  4. Enhanced Digestive Health - Packed with fiber, stomach-soothing herbs and natural prebiotics, our veg dog food supports a healthy digestive system, helping to prevent common gut issues like constipation and diarrhea.
  5. Immune System Support - Our formulas are rich in antioxidants and essential vitamins that boost your dog’s immune system, keeping them healthy and vibrant supported with Turmeric, Blueberries, Cranberries, Ashwagandha, Thyme, Ginger, Chamomile and more!
  6. Promotes Healthy Skin and Coat - Our veg dog food includes essential omega fatty acids including DHA, Zinc, Biotin, Selenium and more, promoting a shiny coat and healthy skin.
  7. Delicious and Appetizing - Dogs love the taste of Freshwoof Plant Power! Our recipes are crafted to be flavorful and satisfying, even for the pickiest eaters.
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