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Overweight pets and pet travel dangers

Wednesday, October 13, 2010 by Rachel Farris

Last week, I took my rescue dog Charlie into the vet's office and noticed some staggering statistics on a poster on the wall: obesity in pets is the number one health problem facing pets in America, with over 40% of pets dangerously overweight.  Today, for National Pet Obesity Awareness Day, I thought I'd focus on the dangers of pet obesity when traveling.


Overweight pets and pet travel problems

Obesity in pets can have similar health issues as humans, leading to arthritis, heart disease, cancer and diabetes.  Treats often hold hidden fat and sugar amounts. While you might think twice about drinking six sodas at lunch, the amount of sugar and fat in six soft drinks is equivalent to those in a premium pig ear available at local pet stores.

When traveling by air, obese animals can be more at-risk to have respiratory or cardiovascular issues because of their additional weight.  We typically recommend that overweight pets go on a diet prior to travel, particularly if they'll be traveling long distances, to prevent them from having weight-related problems when flying.

The video below from the Today Show offers advice on how to tell if your pet is obese. So help your pet today by doing a quick check to make sure he or she is a healthy weight.  It could add years to your pet's life, which means more wagging tails for you.


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