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Obesity in pets


It is highly likely that obesity is the most common cause of premature death in pets, yet it is the easiest of problems to prevent. Over many generations pet keepers have tried to match the food we feed with the diets of wild animals. This is fine in theory but our pets get far less exercise than their wild cousins. We are constantly being told that to lose weight we need to eat less and exercise more, the same applies to our pets.

Unfortunately limiting our pets' food intake doesn't work all that well...

Small animals risk starving to death and any animal on a restricted diet risks amino acid deficiency. Interestingly animals will eat until their protein (amino acid) requirements are met. With diets that are low in protein but high in energy (often containing high levels of oils, starches and sugars) animals will continue eating to get enough protein but, in the process, they get too much excess energy that they store as fat. Boosting the protein level of the diet means they eat less food to satisfy their protein needs and so don't get fat.

There are two ways to achieve this.

  1. The most obvious is to feed foods with high protein levels relative to their energy content. Actually this is quite hard to do as only lean meat, egg white or peas and beans are likely to satisfy this requirement.

  2. The better way involves helping the animal to use all the protein it currently eats. With traditional often cereal based diets (even for cats and dogs) the animal can only use about 60% of the protein it eats. By adding adequate quantities of the limiting amino acids lysine and methionine to the diet we can enable the animal to use virtually all the protein it eats.

We provide these key nutrients in DrS Tiny Animal Essentials, DrS Coat Magic for Dogs, DrS Essentials Plus, DrS Hypo Allergenic Essentials and all of our Feast softfoods. So our standard supplement system help prevent obesity without any extra cost to you!

Better than that, most overweight animals that are properly supplemented like this will actually reduce their total food intake and lose weight completely safely. They will never starve to death because, as soon as they need more energy, they will feel hungry again. Please note this self-regulating system may go wrong with animals that already have obesity related metabolic issues like diabetes. So please contact your veterinarian.

Obesity risks the same diseases in animals as it does in humans - liver and kidney failure, heart and circulatory disease and diabetes are probably the most common. Animals with liver disease normally lose weight before the major symptoms show so it can sometimes be difficult to convince their owners that obesity was the original issue.

Reducing the stress on the liver and kidneys

In healthy animals either of the two methods will help. But if animals already have liver and/or kidney problems then the second method (boosting limiting amino acids) is actually much better.

Boosting plant origin protein simply means the animal has to dispose of the 40% it can’t use properly. That puts more strain on the liver and kidneys.

None of the organs that obesity damages are very good at repairing themselves which is why they are the prime diseases we humans now treat with transplant surgery.

However we are able to reduce the amount of work that the liver and kidney have to do. This is done with the limiting amino acids in Feast and Tiny Animal Essentials, Essentials Plus and Coat Magic.

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