Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Dog Breeds Prone to Obesity

According to the ASPCA, the majority of obese dogs get that way from overfeeding and lack of exercise. It's easy to give your dog too much food and treats, and some dog parents don't realize it's an issue until their dog becomes overweight. Obesity in dogs puts them at risk for other health conditions including diabetes, joint pain and arthritis, heart disease, respiratory issues, and liver problems.

List of Dog Breeds Prone to Obesity
Photo via Dale

All dogs can become fat, but are some more likely to gain weight than others? Yes, there are some dog breeds that are more prone to obesity than others. Older dogs may also be more prone to obesity than younger dogs. Here is a list of some dog breeds that are prone to obesity:



  • Labrador Retrievers
  • Pugs
  • Dachsunds
  • English Bulldogs
  • Cairn Terriers
  • Beagles
  • Cocker Spaniels
  • Rottweilers 
  • Golden Retrievers
  • Chihuahuas
  • Scottish Terriers
  • Pit Bulls
  • Boxers
  • St. Bernards
  • Cavalier King Charles Spaniels
  • Basset Hounds

Just because a particular dog breed is more prone to obesity than others doesn't mean that they will become fat in their lifetime. Proper portion control paired with exercise will ensure that your dog stays slim and trim. This is the best way to keep your pooch the proper weight. 

It's easy to show affection to our dogs by giving them a treat here and there, but it's not always the best way. Other non-food "treats" might include playing fetch, going for a walk, or a quick belly rub and kiss. 

Photo via Andrew Roberts

Some dogs may have health conditions that make it hard for them to lose weight. One example is hypothyroidism. If your weight loss program for your dog doesn't seem to be working, talk with your veterinarian and check to see if there are any other underlying issues. 

Knowing what a "fat dog" looks like is helpful, too. You should be able to see your dog's waistline when standing above them. 

How do you help keep your dog at a healthy weight? 

Sources:

39 comments:

  1. Good post. From our chihuahua group I know quite a few chihuahuas that eat and eat and they look like lush trees with stumps. Sadly, they cannot walk very fast or far and that is not good. I know last year around this time I was a little 'pudgier' and the vet said I needed to lose a pound and a half. A pound on a chihuahua is like 20 on a person. In any case, my food was reduced to carrots/fruit/apples treats in the morning, and 1/3 food in the evening (used to be 1/2 a cup). Once in a while I would cheat (holidays or on vacation) and if I ate 'people' food (rice, beans, broccoli, chicken leftover steak, etc.) I would not eat my dog food as that food took its place. I have kept it off and am down the required weight. I didn't starve myself, I just ate less than I used to and played a whole lot more with my brother Monkey. I will be lookin' good when I model at the International Kennel Club show in Chicago in two weeks! :o)

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    1. Yes, I have met a lot of chunky Chihuahuas! I remember reading about your weight issues and am glad that you're on a good feeding plan now PB. Have fun at the dog show!

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  2. I have to make a conscious effort to keep Beamer trim. He's 95lbs of muscle, but could still stand to lose a few pounds. The shepherd in him is keeping him from being obese.

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    1. I see German Shepherds added to a few other similar lists too! But, because they can be so high energy I think it helps keep them lean.

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  3. We really try to make sure that we balance food intake as much as possible. We are lucky as my hunting drive keeps me trim. Have a terrific Tuesday.
    Best wishes Molly

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    1. You do have a lovely figure Miss Molly!

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  4. I don't think of dogs as having this issue, at least as not as much as cats because of walking them. I guess it's an issue for both. It's definitely an issue for Annie. She needs to lose at least a pound. I see from the other comments and this article that it's quite a challenge and an ongoing one.

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    1. I think dogs can get fat just as easily as cats, BUT I think that cats have a harder time losing the weight once it's there.

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  5. Thanks for this important post. Actually, according to our Vet, Shelties are prone to obesity too. Dakota is too fat and as soon as this weather breaks (if it ever does lol), we are going to work on it more. He is 28 lbs which is too fat. He should be around 23 lbs at the highest. Our goal is to get him down to that weight this summer!

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    1. Yea, you are right Caren. I agree that Shelties could be added to the list. Both of my family's shelties were fat too when they got older and I have met quite a few fat ones as a vet tech. Good luck losing the weight!

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  6. What a very important topic for sure! Glad you touched on it!
    Actually my one Husky will have nothing to do with treats while training. Weird, i know....But her preference is simply being told shes a good girl and giving her a pet while we are in a session.
    Which works for me! And as you said its the best way to go.
    I am guilty of over treating at some points, with the other dogs anyway.
    I should probably be more careful! lol
    But great post today, very informative! And all so important!
    ((husky hugz)) frum da pack at Love is being owned by a husky.

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    1. Well, that is awesome that she is not so food driven! I suppose she aims to please :)

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  7. Pheew, I'm not on the list...but joke apart, we should have an eye on the weight of our dogs. Every pound too much can be awful for the joints and the bones, specially for senior dogs. And it's a hard and long way to reduce the weight, so we better should avoid overweight, prevention is better than curing. Thanks for a great post!

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    1. I love prevention :) One of the best things we can do to help our pet's joint pain is to keep them a healthy weight!

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  8. Yep, once the pounds get on there they are so hard to get them gone.

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  9. Exercise its the only way! Love Dolly

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  10. Great post, Ann. Glad to see dachshunds and bassets on the list since it is so, SO important to keep long-backed dogs from getting even the slightest bit overweight. Yes, all dogs risk serious issues at being overweight but long backed dogs are at greater risk for disk damage and paralysis. That being said, we see a lot of very sad, obese corgis out there. My advice is always to just stop feeding people food, no exceptions. My mom has finally been able to keep her dogs weight down by heeding that advice!

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    1. Yes, they are definitely at risk for back injuries. I've seen a lot of overweight corgi's too. The people food thing can get a bit out of hand for some people and dogs. I have seen it first hand. With my own dogs as a child in fact.

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  11. Great post, Miss Ann! I know why we Cairn Terriers are on the list...we are great beggers! We can look at someone with such pleading eyes and get that food right outta your hand! BOL Of course, I am not allowed to do such things and I do not even get a dog treat if I behave in such a manner. It is the humans that need the willpower to not overfeed their dogs sometimes.
    *Cairn cuddles*
    Oz

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    1. That must be why pit bulls are on the list too Oz! ;) I am glad that you don't partake in such activities though. You are totally right, humans need not give in to the overpowering cuteness of you pups!

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  12. This is really informative and helpful! We hope to have a dog in our lives again someday and this will be registered :-)

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  13. We eat healthy meals, lots of good snacks, and tons of exercise. At my house us dogs are always tired out! Thankfully our breeds are not on the list, but then again they are not really on any lists.

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    1. Well, true Emma. Your breed isn't so common, but I think it's starting to pop up a little more here and there. You guys have a great meal and exercise plan!

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  14. Top my dinner up Mom...I'm not on the list..Phew! xxooxxx

    Mollie and Alfie

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    1. Nope! And you look very slim and trim at that Mollie ;)

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  15. bullie's iz knot prone ta over weight...they iz just big chested !!!!!
    :)

    R way long time ago cuzins clancy, de butcher, jakie, clyde, N zach will thanx uz for sayin thiz !!!

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  16. Interesting! I wonder if there are cat "breeds" prone to that, too. Allie would be on the list, but not Faraday!

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    1. If you go to one of those sources links, they have cat breeds listed as well. The breeds listed are - domestic shorthair, domestic medium hair, and domestic long hair... MOL... so I guess that just means all cats?

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  17. I knew before starting this post that Labradors would be on that list. Thankfully, my Maya is pretty fit. The vet always compliments her on what good shape she's in.

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    1. Yes, Labradors maybe even should be one of the top breeds on this list... Maya does look like she's in great shape.

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  18. Our golden has a thyroid problem. His weight gain along with hair loss was what prompted our vet to test his thyroid levels. Now that he is on medication he is back to a healthy weight.

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    1. Yea, both classic symptoms for hypothyroidism. Glad he's got medication for it now though! Thanks for visiting!

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  19. When we had our Golden, we had trouble keeping weight on him. I think he was blessed with good genes. He wasn't particularly active compared to brown dawgs. :)

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  20. Great post. I can vouch for beagles being prone to getting overweight as we've had several in our family. They are such chowhounds! But if they get enough exercise, they do fine. It's all about calories in / calories out. Really, if folks aren't going to commit to helping the dog get enough exercise, they probably shouldn't get one of the chow-hound breeds! (As for our beagle, our vet was always amazed at how slim and muscular she was - it was because she was addicted to chasing the laser light, so in addition to a nice long walk every day, she also got "buzzed" around the house with the light 3X/day. She LOVED it!)

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    1. Thanks Jackie! You are totally right about the calories in and out thing. Glad your beagle didn't have a weight issue. She sounded very active!

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  21. I knew beagles were going to be on that list, so wasn't surprised by that first photo! We've always known that and have been diligent about keeping our beagles at a healthy weight, by measuring their food, limiting treats, and exercise. I didn't know goldens would be on the list, but we do the same with our golden too. I love how you pointed out that walks and playing fetch can be "treats" too.....more people need to look at it that way.

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    1. Some people just get into the bad habit of tossing their dogs french fries or pizza crusts on a regular basis. I'm guilty myself, and Shiner has only come close to being fat once in her lifetime. Like you said, we just have to be diligent!

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  22. It's really amazing how quickly pups can put on the pounds…and how many pudgy pups (and cats for that matter) are out there. Tater is a terrier/beagle mix and we really have to watch his weight. When we first adopted him my husband thought he would "help me out" in the morning by feeding him. The problem was he didn't tell me and I was feeding him too. My husband didn't realize that unlike cats, dogs will eat everything and not stop. Fortunately we figured it out sooner than later and Tater is on a good diet with healthy treats!

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    1. Yea, I do that all the time with my boyfriend! Thankfully, it hasn't led to anything. Glad you got Tater all fixed up now!

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