Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Subject Near and Dear to My Heart

If you do not do performance sports with your dogs, you would be AMAZED at the amount of dogs that compete in agility who are significantly overweight. It is mind boggling. These owners are asking for the dogs to be injured, IMO. I am sure that you have seen the overweight pet dogs who's owners somehow think food equals love and are very offended if you comment that Muffy needs to lose a pound or too.

The Association for Pet Obesity Prevention is conducting their third national pet obesity study. If you would like to take part in a 10 question survey, click here.

"Overweight pets increase their risk of heart disease, osteoarthritis, several types of cancer and a host of other illnesses." Hmmm...sounds very similar to their human counterparts, no?


Dawn Small said...

Very cool, Jules. Thank you for posting this. It's one of my "hot button issues" too.

I recently attended "Woofstock", an event organized by The Animal House to raise money for area rescue organizations. I found that there were essentially two types of dog there: those owned by people competing in conformation, agility, flyball, etc., and those owned by John Q Public. With almost no exceptions, John Q's dogs were obese and badly in need of a pedicure. I walked around the grounds tsking to myself and staring in dismay, until my poor husband pulled me out of there and took me home before I could do something truly embarrassing.

I dremeled both dogs' toenails when I got home. They had been done about 5 days before that, but still!

Jules said...

I am the same way. I try to do my boys nails every week and if I miss a week it makes me cringe to see them. I do not understand how people can allow their dog to become obese (barring a health issue they don't have control over) or let their nails grow like that. There is a health impact, people! And you have CONTROL of it. Who feeds the dog? Who exercises him/her? I always feel so badly for those dogs.

manymuddypaws said...

i work at a dog daycare. and let me tell you that about 80% of the dogs that come are overweight. 30% of those obese.

it drives me crazy, but I have no problem telling people if I think their dog is fat. I am not known for my subtlety. :o)

in my agility class we go over all the dogs in the first week or so and I will tell them if I think the dog needs to lose weight. I used to take the person aside and tell them privately but I found that if I do it as a group they are more likely to take it serious and get the weight off. mean, but effective.

nails are another huge pet peeve. I cut the dogs nails at work once a week. I don't think that some owners even notice! I now teach nail trimming in all my pet obedience classes- my own dogs nails are sometimes too long for my tastes, but they grow SO fast. I have started marking it in my calendar when I need to do them.

i think the issue is that people just don't know. they think my dogs are too skinny. and that all dogs should be pleasantly plump. Puppies especially. I cringe when I see a roly poly lab puppy waddle into the daycare...

Holly said...

I was so careful in letting Chloe (now Eva) go to a new home as I refused to let her go to someone who would let her get overweight as she structurally could not handle it.

Holly said...

i also give out a purina weight chart in my puppy pack and explain proper weight for a Cardigan.

Jules said...

Amanda, I think that is such a good way to start a performance class. People are funny about weight on their dogs.

I can NOT imagine seeing 8 out of 10 dogs walk in the door overweight. Ugh.

Holly, Chloe looks nice and skinny in the video you posted. Obviously her owners are listening to you!

101mutts said...

I agree that it's a perception thing. If an average person sees mostly their friends' dogs who are overweight and have long toenails than it will seem like that is the norm. So on the bright side, if a lot more people started with getting their dogs to the proper weight and toenail length than the perception would change and more people would realize they have a problem.