We have been looking at obesity in pets this month. Last week we talked about limiting food intake by feeding meals. Excess snacks can be a big problem for many of our pets, especially dogs. It is natural to want to give your pets treats when they do good things. I find myself wanting to give treats just for being so darn cute! Part of our bond with our pets involves feeding and giving goodies. I cannot ask you to stop giving snacks to your pets, but I do want to ask you to consider the calories in each snack. Dogs and cats know when they should get a treat – it is part of their routine. They also know how many cookies they get each time. If you give Fluffy 3 dog bones at the end of every walk, Fluffy will always expect 3 goodies at the end of her walks. But you can make each snack smaller and use lower calorie snacks. Break your dog bones into small pieces (1/4 piece or smaller), use raw veggies or give a calorie-controlled cookie like a Charlee Bear or Lean Treat.

While it is always tempting to let our pets eat the leftovers or lick the bowl, this can be a huge source of calories to a small pet. Remember that you are probably 15 times bigger than your cat. That means your food is 15x more fattening to your cat and small dog! Stop the ice cream and gravy snacks!