Vegan diet may be the solution for overweight cats and dogs

Obesity is an epidemic

As with humans, obesity in pets is at epidemic proportions. According to Dr. Jim Berry, president of the Canadian Veterinary Medical Association, an estimated 60 percent of Canadian pets are overweight or obese. A similar survey by Association of Pet Obesity Prevention identified 59 percent of cats and 54 percent of dogs in the United States as overweight or obese.

It leads to health and emotional problems

While overweight pets may not face the same social stigma as humans, medical and emotional damage is being done all the same. Obesity in animals can cause complications in almost every system in the body, with conditions ranging from diabetes [1] to osteoarthritis [2], cancer, digestive problems, mobility difficulties, heart issues and, possibly, premature death. [5] 

A landmark lifespan study showed Labradors who were 10-20 percent overweight – not even obese, which is typically defined as greater than 20 percent – lived a median 1.8 years shorter than their trim ideal weight counterparts. [3]

Another study shows that obesity indeed has emotional consequences for pets. Overweight pets have worse scores in vitality, quality of life, pain and emotional disturbance. However, the good news is those values can improve with weight loss. [4]

Vegan diet may be the answer

Canadian veterinarians identified weight control/management as the number one thing a pet owner can do to increase the length of their pet’s life (Canada's Pet Wellness Report 2011). We believe that switching to a well-balanced vegan diet would be very beneficial for animals struggling with obesity.

According to an informal survey conducted by our team, weight is not a major concern among guardians of vegan cats and dogs. Vegan cats and dogs seem to be leaner and healthier than their meat-eating friends. We also know that humans that follow a vegetarian diet have fewer weight issues and vegetarian diet is twice more effective than carnivorous one for those who try to lose weight (Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine in Washington).

We strongly believe that vegan diet, combined with healthy lifestyle, will keep the weight of your dog or cat in check. Your pet will be leaner, have fewer health and emotional problems, and live a long and satisfying life.

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Has your dog or cat ever struggled with weight issues? Did you change his or her diet and see the difference? Please comment on this blog, we'd love to hear your story!

Vecado Team







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