I have a good friend at work with 2 labs - these dogs are both inside and fairly young - well he tells me today they are way tooo big and they need to lose weight - do we have a good practice for weight loss on here - He said she will not play, that she is really lazy - any suggestions or a good answer to this already?
<br />Rebecca Crockett's Mom<br />www.myspace.com/crockettl8e
cutting back food and replacing with greenbeans.
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The best thing to do is to cut back the food intake and increase exercise... the same way we lose weight! What is he feeding them and how much? Not all dog foods are created equal...many of the lower quality foods have fillers and sugars that the dogs just don't need.
My girl weighed 97 lbs in January 2005. She ended up rupturing a ligament in her knee (most likely due to stress caused by excessive weight) and had to have TPLO surgery. Prior to her surgery, she was put on a prescription weight loss food from the vet. The vet suggested we cut her food by about 1/2 - 3/4 cup a day (she was eating about 3 cups a day). After she finished that bag of food, we switched her to Canidae and she continued to lose weight. Following her surgery, we slowly increased her exercise and now walk regularly during the warmer months. Today, 2 years after her injury she weighs in at a very svelt 78 lbs!
The other thing to consider is that the dog may have hypothyroidism....we discovered that Gracie had developed this about 10 months ago. She had lost about 13 lbs just by changing her food and increasing her exercise. She lost another 5 lbs or so after we put her on medication for the hypothyroidism.
Glitter Graphics<br /><br />
Therapydawg you beat me to it. Over the past year I make a point of walking Oona a minimum of two hours every morning. Sometimes in the summer it means we are out to the lake and on the water by 6am. She has lost 12 lbs in the last year. On our latest yearly checkup the vet pointed to the chart on the wall, he said,"You see that dog in the middle? (its the ideal weight) That's your dog. Great job."
How much food and exercise are they getting?
Unless some medical issue is involved, the answer to weight loss is the same every time -- more exercise and less food. There is no science behind it. Dogs gain weight for the exact same reason we do -- they consume more calories than they are burning off. It is all about finding a balance. Almost all foods (dry and wet) provide you with a guideline of how much to feed -- many people are, quite understandably, suckered into feeding that amount. On many, many foods this amount is grossly higher than what is really needed and therefore that is one of the reasons why (I think) there are so many overweight dogs. Add that to the fact people are "too busy" to properly exercise their dogs and we have a widescale problem.
If you can get your work mate to answer the question it will be easier to help.