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Shedding the Winter Weight

Friday, April 13, 2012
Shedding the Winter Weight
As the spring leaves come out, so do the spring clothes and the truth about how many pounds we've packed on. The same may go for your dog.

As the leaves come out, so do the spring clothes. That's usually when we realize winter hasn't been kind to our waistline. Odds are, your dog is in the same boat.

Here are a few easy ways to see if your dog is overweight:

  • Have him stand up. Does his body curve inward at the waist?
  • Run your hands over his sides from front to back legs. Can you feel his ribs fairly easily?
  • Look at him from the side. Does his tummy curve upward as it gets closer to his tail?

If you answered, “no” to any of these questions, your dog probably packed on some extra weight in the winter. Not to worry: the solutions are pretty simple. Eat less, exercise more.

Eat less
We tend to eat more over the winter months. It's our nature. It's also your dog's nature. Now that spring is here, it's the perfect time to develop and stick to a regimented feeding schedule.

First, choose the right daily amount of food for your dog. The feeding guidelines on his favorite cesar® canine cuisine meal will likely recommend an appropriate amount for your dog's weight. Your vet can also give you a recommendation.

Next, decide whether to feed your dog this amount once a day, or split up the recommended amount over two or three feedings. These more frequent feedings may be a good idea for your friend since older dogs need fewer calories than younger ones due to their lower activity level and changes in body composition.

Exercise more
It won't take any convincing to get your dog to exercise more, just get the leash and head out for a walk. Walking an hour a day is a good guideline. Of course, you can do that all at once, or split it up into shorter walks. Do what works best with your schedule and your dog.

On the weekends, the two of you can head to the park with a ball. It's a great way to spend some more time with your dog. And that extra exercise will go a long way in keeping your dog healthy for a long time.

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