F is for…February and Pet Fitness

As I am sure you are aware, just like us, maintaining a healthy weight and lifestyle is important for a pet’s health and wellbeing. This is something that our pets are not able to control on their own so we need to make sure we help out.

Dogs often gain weight during winter months, commonly as a result of reduced exercise.  Cold and dark winter mornings and evenings are not a great motivation for long walks. This is where we need to take action, everyone knows the saying ‘a pet is for life not just for Christmas’ this is so true. When you decide to own a pet you are then in control of how their life is lead, this means walks in the cold, and waking up early over the winter months.

pet fitness

Weight can creep on as a consequence which may not always be easy to spot.  Extra weight adds pressure to joints and internal organs as they have to work harder, and in turn, making walks longer and slower.


Unfortunately, light diets are often disappointing as they only maintain weight, rather than assist with weight loss.  Combining exercise with a suitable weight loss food is a better guarantee to see a positive outcome.  Sometimes even just a change in their treats may make a difference, so, your dog doesn’t have to miss out on the rewards you give them.


Each pet is an individual and the veterinary team approaches each one accordingly, tailor making the weight loss plan to your pet’s needs.  Regular weight checks help monitor progress.  Should your dog’s weight loss not be going to plan, then the veterinary team will support you with ideas and suggestions.  It’s also an opportunity for your dog to visit the vets without having anything too invasive done!  This will help in other ways to reduce stress if you should ever need to bring your pet to us in the future.

exercising dog

You will notice with time as your dog loses weight, they will become more active not just on walks but also at home.  Now’s a great time to address that winter weight gain as the days draw out and exercise can be increased.  Equally, if you have concerns that your dog is underweight, veterinary staff can advise.  Cats also get a mention, as we all know they often have a sedentary lifestyle so tackling this can be a challenge but one that is achievable with the support of your veterinary team.


Watch this link as your pet may relate https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZjYA54-5znc&list=UUTr_ckVHX5lom81iZDqlD5w&index=15


At Riverside Veterinary Centre our weight check appointments are free of charge.  Please call 01789 299455 to arrange an appointment in our freshly decorated room to ensure we’re available when you bring your pet in.