5 Sneaky Ways to Keep Dogs and Cats Slim

Vital Veggies

We're not against treats; we're against junky treats. Too many pet treats are calorie grenades laden with sugar and fat. If you’re going to give your pets extra goodies, choose lower-calorie options. As an alternative to highly processed store-bought treats, try ­offering dogs baby carrots, green beans, celery, cucumbers, sliced apples and bananas, and ice cubes. For cats, try a flake of salmon or tuna. While you’re at it, put down the potato chips and share a veg with your pooch. You’ll both be healthier for it.

Treat Tactfully

Whatever treats you give, be sure to count those calories. Many pet owners feed the proper amount of food but sabotage their efforts by adding treats throughout the day. As few as 30 extra calories per day means your pet may gain three pounds in a year.

Hustle for Health

For dogs, as little as 20 to 30 minutes of daily brisk walking may be all it takes to boost immune function, improve cardiovascular health and burn calories. For cats, try playing chase (using a laser pointer, remote-controlled toy or ball of paper) for five to 15 minutes each day.

As a pet owner, it’s your responsibility to help your cat or dog maintain a healthy weight. Even though she might love eating snacks and table scraps every day, you know that’s not smart. It’s up to you to feed healthy, nutritious foods and treats and to exercise your pet daily. By using these simple suggestions, you’ll be on your way to your pet’s best — and healthiest — year yet.

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