Pets can become overweight and obese just like their owners can. If your dog is overweight but otherwise healthy, it's wise to take them to the animal hospital just to make sure they are OK.
Here are reasons why you should take your healthy but now overweight dog to the animal hospital for an exam, even if they have just had one recently. Your dog's veterinarian may want to take blood tests to determine if there are underlying reasons why your dog is gaining weight, especially if the weight gain is sudden or extreme.
Your dog might have a health condition
Your dog might be doing more than just eating more than they should; their overweight build can be caused by a health condition. Perhaps your dog has a tumor or something wrong with its thyroid, causing weight gain. Or, your dog may have a genetic condition that causes them to retain water or otherwise gain weight that needs to be addressed. If your dog is only large around its middle, its weight gain can be caused by something serious but treatable, such as worms.
Your dog might be in danger of obesity
If your dog is overweight but not yet obese, the time is now to intervene and help keep your dog from tipping the scales due to lack of exercise or poor eating habits. Your dog needs regular exercise and only the amount of kibble their recommended weight should have, so if your dog needs changes in their lifestyle to keep them from being obese, it's up to you as their owner to get the right direction for care from their veterinarian at the animal hospital.
Your dog's vet can even recommend a special dog food or put your dog on a diet, monitoring its weight loss to ensure your dog stays healthy and on track. If you aren't walking your dog every day, now is the time to start. Start small so you don't overwhelm your pet, then slowly increase walks as your dog remains active and accepting of the exercise.
Your dog might be in pain
The more weight your dog has on its frame — especially if your dog is smaller boned to begin with — the more pain being overweight can cause them. Their bones and joints aren't designed to carry large amounts of weight, and the pain can cause your dog to be agitated, lethargic, and stressed. Take your dog to the animal hospital sooner rather than later to address their current weight, learn where they need to be weight-wise, and find ways you can treat their current pain related to their weight.
Look for a local animal hospital like Center-Sinai Animal Hospital to visit.