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Help Your Overweight Pet Slim Down

- Provided by VetStreet.com
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It’s one thing to point out problems, and quite another to offer solutions. When it comes to trimming excess weight off America’s pets, we veterinarians have gotten tougher about pointing out the problem. Now it’s time to step up and offer solutions.

Actually, that’s the easy part. Because you know, telling someone her dog or cat is fat isn’t the easiest thing in the world. Some folks take it personally, especially if the pet owner — or the bearer of bad news, the veterinarian — is carrying some extra weight as well. But it’s a conversation that we veterinarians must have with you, because being overweight or obese can shorten your pet’s life — and make the life he has nothing short of miserable.

Change Your Pet's Eating Habits

Now … about those solutions. We veterinarians often hear things like, “He begs, and I can’t resist!” or “I’ve tried, but he’s starving.” I understand how you feel, and so does your pet's veterinarian. But you know what? I won't let you give up. There are some simple strategies for helping your pet lighten the load that won't drive your or your pet crazy:

Change foods. The food your pet had as an energetic youngster make not be right for a quieter, middle-aged animal. Talk to your veterinarian about your pet’s diet. As I always say, pet food doesn’t have to be the most expensive to be “the best.” No matter what your budget is or where you shop, your veterinarian will be able to help you choose a healthy product for your pet. And don’t forget that the perfect match may be food provided by your veterinarian: Therapeutic diets available only from a veterinarian may be what’s needed to get the weight off. These aren't just “light” versions of regular diets, but are specifically formulated to increase lean muscle mass.

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General Practice

We have over 540 animal hospitals in 41 states that are staffed by more than 2,000 fully qualified, dedicated and compassionate veterinarians, with more than 200 being board-certified specialists. The nationwide VCA family of general practice hospitals give your pet the very best in medical care, providing a full range of general medical and surgical services as well as specialized treatments*: Wellness, Spay/neuter, Advanced diagnostic services (MRI/CT Scan), Internal medicine, Oncology, Ophthalmology, Dermatology, Cardiology, Neurology, Boarding, Grooming

*services may vary by location.

Our family of pet hospitals stands out by delivering the greatest resources in order provide the highest quality care available for your pets. By maintaining the highest standards of pet health care available anywhere, we emphasize prevention as well as healing. We provide continuing education programs to our doctors and staff and promote the open exchange of professional knowledge and expertise. And finally, we have established a consistent program of procedures and techniques, proven to be the most effective in keeping pets healthy.

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Specialty Care

Sometimes sick or injured pets need the care of a veterinary medical specialist. When that happens, VCA specialty hospitals work closely with the general practitioner veterinarians who refer cases to us in order to provide seamless veterinary care to your pet. When your pet is facing any kind of serious illness or injury, our specialty referral hospitals will provide the compassionate and expert care your beloved pet needs.

Our goal is to make sure that when you and your pet are in need that you have access to board certified specialists who are up to date on the very latest developments in their field. In our state of the art hospitals, our specialists also have access to the most sophisticated diagnostic and treatment tools and techniques from ultrasonography and endoscopy to CAT scans and even MRI.

We have twenty-eight specialty hospitals across the US so there may be one near you. Our specialized services include: cardiology, critical care, dentistry, dermatology, internal medicine, neurology, oncology, ophthalmology, radiology and surgery.

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Emergency Care

In case of emergency, please call us immediately. If it is after hours, check with a local animal hospital emergency clinic.

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