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DOG / nutrition

Chowhound! The Right Weight for Your Dog

Obesity can bring on respiratory problems, diabetes, arthritis and heart disease. The right diet helps dogs shed pounds and get fit.

Overview

Ditch the calories but keep the good stuff

About one in three dogs are either overweight or obese. Simply shrinking portion size rarely results in successful weight loss. Besides making dogs hungry all the time, reduced portions will cheat them out of essential vitamins and minerals.

A PetSmart associate can help you find premium foods with reduced calories and fat that still delivers the recommended amounts of:

  • Protein
  • Fatty acids
  • Vitamins & minerals
  • Fiber, to feel fuller longer

Weight loss or weight maintenance?

Not all weight control formulas are created equally. Reduced-calorie and reduced-fat foods are recommended for weight loss. Light and lean foods are recommended for weight management or if your dog has a tendency to gain weight but is not yet overweight.

How to label shop and what to look for:

Dry food sold as “light” or “lite” should be labeled as having no more than 3,100 kcal per kilogram of foods. Wet food sold as “light” or “lite” should be labeled as having no more than 900 kcal per kilogram

Dry food sold as “lean” should be labeled as containing no more than 9% fat; wet food no more than 4% fat.

When shopping for a weight-loss food, “less calories” or “reduced calories” should be labeled with the percentage of calorie reduction and the product of comparison. Food sold as “less fat” or “reduced fat” must be labeled with the percentage of fat reduction and the product of comparison.

Go with a pro

Consult your vet to help you develop a comprehensive weight-loss plan that includes:

  • Determining the amount of weight your dog needs to lose
  • Establishing daily calorie intake
  • Specifying exercise amounts to reach the ideal weight
  • Scheduling follow-up appointments to monitor progress and adjust calories
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