April 2, 2011

Kindness With Dog

The Arnprior and District Humane Society had a dog brought in as a continual that was the second in second months to arrive morbidly corpulent.

This time it is totally sweet natured, happy little Pomeranian, which should be around 12 to 15 pounds, but instead it tipped the scales at 30 pounds.

“It breaks the hearts of the females who work at the humane society so indefatigably, for something so preventable,” said Val Hemphill of the Ontario Society for the Prevention of harshness to Animals.

“Not only is it again going to be expensive with vet bills, but placing it in surrogate care for the length of time needed to help it lose weight is emotionally draining to the care family.

“Giving a pet a healthy and happy life, with the proper food and exercise is love, not tidbits and scraps from the table with little to no exercise is not,” she stressed.

Hemphill pointed out that the primary causes of corpulence can be the same as for humans, overfeeding and lack of exersise.

When the regular caloric intake exceeds the energy burned, the excess is stored as fat, she explained. As little as one per cent caloric intake can result in a 25 per cent increase over the ideal body weight by middle age.

She noted that although some cases of obesity are from thyroid or pituitary dysfunction, these can be addressed properly by regular visits to the vet.

“The saddest thing is what it can do to the animal you ‘love’,” said Hemphill. She said that obesity can cause the following and potentially fatal ailments: heart disease, decreased liver function, musculoskeletal diseases, respiratory problems, gastrointestinal disorders, and stress on bones, joints and tendons.

“Even little ‘lap dogs’ like this one (Pomeranian), who has months of rehab to go through, need to get out of the ‘designer’ purses and off the laps of well intentioned owners, and walked.”

Give a dog proper exercise will result in “having your companion around for a few extra years, instead of the alternative which is ‘killing him with kindness’,” she concluded.

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