April 25, 2021 3 min read

Canine obesity is a significant issue, affecting around 40% of dogs in Australia. This condition can have severe impacts on a dog's cardiovascular system, joints, ligaments, and various internal organs, particularly the liver and kidneys. One major cause of dog obesity is an inappropriate diet. As responsible pet owners, it's our job to provide a well-balanced, healthy diet for our furry friends. But how can we ensure we're making the right choices for their nutritional needs?

This article will cover:

  • Identifying if your pet is overweight.
  • The effects of domestication on your pet's diet.
  • Tips for selecting the right treats.
  • Understanding that food equals energy.

Is my pet overweight?

This is the most important question to ask your vet. And you may not believe it but also a tricky question to answer. Many veterinarians don’t like telling their clients that their animal is overweight, due to the fact that your vet doesn’t want to offend you. So be proactive and open for genuine feedback and tips.

As a health conscious pet owner you need to understand that your pets’ weight is an important factor of disease prevention, longevity and overall quality of life. Have you heard of the Body Condition Score? It is an easy 9 point system to determine your pet’s healthy shape. An ideal score is a 4 or 5. All scores below are underweight and scores from 6-9 are overweight.

In terms of shape, when viewed from above, your pet should have a noticeable waist between the end of the rib cage and the start of their hind quarters, and when using light pressure over their back and sides, you should be able to feel, but not see, his or her individual ribs and spine.

Body Condition Score by Guidedogs.org

Domestication and its consequences

Dogs and cats were domesticated by us humans and if you look at the diet of our pets´ ancestors, their modern diet has been humanized. In today’s fast paced world, food must be quick and easy to prepare (open a dry food bag or a can to pour it into the bowl) – so it must be practical for humans and ready for the animals.

As a dog or cat owner, you have taken on a responsibility to care for your pet. Mistakes in feeding your pet have similar consequences as malnutrition in humans.

In the worst case, the animals are formally fed to death, so one should only choose suitable feed. Ideally, these are based exclusively on natural ingredients, as the dog and cat naturally require. Sugar supplements should not be in the feed. If your pet gains too much weight despite the diet, reduce the meals to a healthy level or switch to fresh food.


Choosing the right treats

There are so many treats for our pets on the market and scrolling through pet shops and supermarkets doesn’t make the choice easy.  So how do you find the good treats from the bad?

Follow our 6 step guide to treat your pet safely:

  1. Turn that treat bag in your hand around
  2. Scroll through the ingredient list
  3. Do you see any glycerine, preservatives or numbers? 
  4. The words ‘artificial colours’ and ‘artificial flavours’ already show that the producer used synthetic substances
  5. Look for sugars such as sucrose, sorbitol or dextrose
  6. None of the above are included? Awesome!

Choosing the right treats

Finding the right treat for your pet can be challenging given the vast array of options on the market. To make an informed choice, examine the ingredients listed on the packaging. Steer clear of treats containing glycerine, preservatives, artificial colours or flavours, or added sugars such as sucrose, sorbitol or dextrose.

For healthy, wholesome treats that your pet will love, consider the range at The Golden Bone Bakery. Our Beef Hooves filled with kangaroo meat or the tasty Lamb Quoobies are excellent choices for your canine companions.

Food is energy

Food fuels your pet's energy and aids in body building and repair. As pet owners, we must make health-conscious and smart food decisions to ensure our pets lead long, strong, and happy lives.

For nutritious and delicious treats made with your pet's health in mind, check out The Golden Bone Bakery. All our products are made with ingredients that offer nutritional benefits and are veterinarian-approved. Try our Carrot & Mint treats with a super low fat content of only 1.4%! Or if your pet loves to chew, our Goat Horns or Beef Hooves filled with dehydrated lean kangaroo mince are sure to be a hit. Remember, a healthy pet is a happy pet!