National Pet Obesity Awareness and World Mental Health Days

I’ll be the first to admit that I love a good evening at home on the couch, cuddling with Berlin and Bagheera, who perhaps, if Bagheera is lucky, are also cuddling together (check out the latest in this saga -HERE-). It’s good for our souls..but it doesn’t complete the picture.

Our days also consist of walks, play time, and other day-to-day routines. I consciously think about our purpose everyday and what can help us live this life together as long as possible.

This always comes back to our physical and mental health and how they intertwine with each other.

If I’m feeling anxious, it’s amazing what a good walk with Berlin with do for my spirits. If I’m overwhelmed, a good play time with Bagheera is sure to put a smile on my face. And I’m in tune to their needs as well, providing cuddles, activity, or sometimes even space as requested through their body language and behavior changes.

Given how our mental and physical health are connected, is it a coincidence that National Pet Obesity Awareness Day and World Mental Health Day are in the same week? I think not.

With this in mind, I wanted to share with you an alarming statistic as well as how to determine if your pet is at their ideal weight. But first, a reminder of the benefits of physical activity.

Increase your chance to live longer
Improve your mental health
Reduce your risk of heart disease
Reduce your risk of cancer
Strengthen your bones and muscles
Reduce your risk of diabetes
Control your weight
Improve your ability to do activities

Amazing right?

Now, before I share with you how to determine if your pet is at their ideal weight, which can be achieved through a good diet and physical activity, here is that frightening statistic:

So, how can you determine if your dog is at their ideal weight? Here are some guidelines:

Top Profile

Looking down at your dog/cat from directly overhead, their outline should taper between their ribs and hips.

Side Profile

From the side, there should be a tuck up towards the groin after your dog/cat’s ribs. That said, it’s natural for a cats to have a small pooch that helps them maneuver (jumping etc).

Touch

You should be able to easily feel your dog/cat’s ribs, though they might not be visible.

If you aren’t sure if your dog (or cat) is at a healthy weight, please consult with your veterinarian.

In Los Angeles and interested in getting or staying healthy with your pup?

Join my fitness classes with your dog on Monday and Wednesday nights in Santa Monica and my monthly pack walks in and around Los Angeles.

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