Why Obesity is Bad for Dogs

Dog owners can spoil their dogs rotten. Without knowing, we might be endangering them when we feed them more than necessary. Sure, treats and rewards are not bad if your dog exercises regularly. But if your dog is a couch potato, you might want to rethink what kind of lifestyle you are giving him. Dogs need exercise as much as humans do, and obesity is as dangerous for dogs as it is for humans.

Here are 7 reasons from Dr. Phil Zeltzman of Pet Health Network as to why dog obesity is dangerous.


Extra weight puts more pressure on a dog’s joints. This makes the cartilage in the joints deteriorate, thus leading to arthritis. Although pain medications can help, weigh loss improves their condition significantly.

ACL (anterior cruciate ligament)

Having too much weight is a known risk factor for tearing the ACL, an important ligament in the knee. If this happens, the ACL must be repaired with surgery which will be painful for the dog and expensive for the owner.

Heart and breathing conditions

Obesity increases the risk of heart disease and high blood pressure. It has also been linked to breathing problems. Overweight dogs are more prone to get a collapsing trachea and laryngeal paralysis, which could eventually lead to a fatal respiratory crisis.

Anesthesia risk

During anesthesia, an overweight or obese dog’s heart and lungs have to work harder. He struggles to breathe because of the difficulty of expanding his chest. Overweight dogs may take a long time to wake up after anesthesia.


Obesity increases the risk of certain tumors like benign fatty tumors (lipomas) and breast and bladder cancer (transitional cell carcinoma).

Skin diseases

Being overweight causes a dog to have extra skin folds. This can cause irritation and infection by bacteria. This can also cause scratching, body odor, and skin redness. Overweight dogs often have an unhealthy looking coat because it is harder for them to groom effectively.

Quantity and quality of life

Obesity makes your dog’s life harder. It is more difficult for them to move about and it tires them easily.

It is important to keep your dog healthy so regular exercise is essential in a dog’s daily activities. Make sure to give him ample exercise. Not only are you making your dog healthy but you are bonding with him as well!

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