Is Your Dog Obese? Here Are the Warning Signs
Giving our fur-babies food is one of the many ways we love and care for them. But rewarding them with treats or sharing your food might be doing more harm than good. "According to the Association for Pet Obesity Prevention, an estimated 55.6% of dogs in the United States are obese" (Not in the Dog House, The Obese Dog). Using treats to reward good behavior is alright in moderation. The important thing is to watch out for obesity.
HOW MUCH IS TOO MUCH?
In order to determine the right nutrition for your pup, consider breed, age, size, weight, activity level, and food type. There are several resources online to help you determine the ideal food and portion size. It's always a good idea to consult your veterinarian for an evaluation and recommendation. And remember to adjust food changes gradually so your pup can adapt.
WHAT ARE THE RISKS?
Carrying around extra pounds is hard on their joints, legs, and spine. Obesity can "shed 2.5 years off your dog's life" (Dr. Becker, Healthy Pets). These extra pounds can put your fur-baby at risk of diseases such as "osteoarthritis, type 2 diabetes, heart and respiratory disease, kidney disease, insulin resistance, high blood pressure, cranial cruciate ligament injury, and cancer" (Dr. Becker, Healthy Pets).
HOW CAN PUPPOD HELP?
PupPod is designed to promote activity, slow down eating, and control caloric intake. PupPod can be used to dispense a normal meal or treats. In either case, dogs are both physically and mentally active when earning and finding rewards. Fifteen minutes of mental activity similar to the type PupPod requires can burn more calories than a typical walk. PupPod is designed to slow down eating in two ways. First, as a dog starts to master a given challenge, the game gets harder. This naturally slows down access to food rewards, because dogs have to keep thinking to keep earning treats or kibble. Secondly, PupPod only releases a few rewards at a time, which results in slower eating. Lastly, PupPod provides parental controls so pet parents can set calorie levels and track the caloric intake of each play session.