15 Dog Breeds That Are Prone to Obesity from 15 Dog Breeds That Are Prone to Obesity

15 Dog Breeds That Are Prone to Obesity

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15 Dog Breeds That Are Prone to Obesity

Obesity is the No. 1 nutritional disease affecting pets today, Dr. Nancy Chilla-Smith, an associate veterinarian at PAWSitive Veterinary, says. Risk factors would include an overweight owner, whether the dogs live in a house or apartment, breed, age, and other diseases. Just like humans, “animals’ metabolism slows as they age, so if the owners continue to feed them same amount the pet will gain weight,” she adds. Obesity can become a life-threatening condition. As with humans, predisposes to many diseases are diabetes, heart disease, liver disease, arthritis. But genetics do play a role and, just like with some people and ethnicities, some breeds tend to deposit fat more and have slower metabolisms.  

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Beagle

Beagles, great family dogs, are one of the breeds Dr. Chilla sees most often overweight or obese. They like to eat everything and they also tend to finish their food very fast. Beagles also tend to run around and play less as they get older. As is the case with humans, lack of activity leads to weight gain. Also, according to Pet Health, Beagles are prone to develop fatty tumors.

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Scottish Terrier

The Scottish Terrier can suffer from a number of genetic health problems, according to Vet Street, including hypothyroidism – under active thyroid gland that reduces the metabolic rate causing the dog to become lethargic. Also, Scottish Terriers have very short legs, so they won’t be running huge distances with their owners or exercising for a long time. The best kind of workout for them is walks.

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Yorkies

Yorkshire Terriers are a small breed, but they need a lot of exercise. Playtime is a great way to keep them active because they become very attached to their owners and need a lot of attention. “A lot of [dog breeds] are obese-prone if they live in the city, as they are bred to be very active, so if they don't get the 2+ hours of exercise a day, they are at a higher risk of gaining weight,” Dr. Chilla says.

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Bulldog

Dr. Chilla says she sees a lot of bulldogs that are overweight. Many of them are “couch potatoes. They don’t have much energy to play all the time and run around with the kids. Bulldogs love to eat and they will consume all the food their owners give them. They are not used to being active or doing strenuous exercises, which makes losing weight even more difficult. They get tired easily because their short noses make breathing more difficult.

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Boxer

Boxers love to run but they often have thyroid problems. Hypothyroidism lowers the metabolism, and makes them prone to weight gain. “When we examine a dog, we not only look at the weight, we also look at muscle mass,” Dr. Chilla says. “We also feel the fat layer over the ribs, in the abdomen (around the organs), and we look for curves.” If Boxers weigh more than they should, the ribs will be covered by a layer of fat and won’t be seen or felt when touching them. Take them on long walks or jogging.

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Dachshund

Dachshunds tend to be lazy, according to Dog Breed Info Center. They have longer backs, so obesity also makes them prone to disc disease and other spinal problems. If you have a Dachshund, make sure you take it exercising every day. They have short legs which makes it hard for them to run for a long time.  Play with them in the yard and take them on 20- to 40-minute walks to burn off extra calories.

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Golden Retriever

The breed that is probably most worthy of the “All-American dog” title is the Golden Retriever. They are always happy to play and are very friendly. They love it when people pay attention to them, but they also tend to prefer to stay in the house curled up on the couch. A study found that 62.7 percent of Golden Retrievers in the U.S. are overweight or obese. “A lot of owners are not educated about what is okay for dogs to eat, so education level in regards to pet care of owners and how they grew up is also a risk factor,” Dr. Chilla says.

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Rottweilers

Rottweilers can easily put on weight since they are a large breed that is prone to hypothyroidism. They love to be physically active so keep them that way. When they are not getting healthy food, are being overfed, or given too many treats, they can get very overweight, lethargic and unenthusiastic. “I'm fine with some human food if needed, like a bland chicken and rice for dogs with diarrhea or a piece of steak (w/o seasoning) every once in a while,” Dr. Chilla says. “Blueberries, bananas, watermelon, peas, green beans are all are good treats in moderation,” she adds.

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English Mastiff

Mastiffs are generally slow and big, and they have a tendency to be lazy and obese, according to Mastiff Savvy. They don’t have much energy. You really have to work hard at engaging them in physical activities. You should take them on long walks at least three times a week. They don’t like to run.

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Pug

“Dogs who get a lot of exercise outdoors, such as in a back yard or hunting, need more food,” Dr. Chilla says. “But if an owner has a dog that they carry in their arms at all times, they have to be stricter with caloric intake,” she adds. Pugs are small and cute, and people tend to hold them. Just like bulldogs, pugs love to eat and have short snouts and pinched nostrils which make breathing harder, leading to less exercise.

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Newfoundland

Large dogs, such as Newfoundland which can weigh as many as 150 pounds, are susceptible to bloat. They are usually sedentary indoors and have big appetites, so overfeeding is common. The trick is that because big dogs are already prone to joint problems, according to Vet Street, you can’t have them exercise for too long or too often. Obesity increases the chances the Newfs will develop structural problems and makes them more painful.

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Basset Hound

Even though Basset Hounds are hunting dogs bred for endurance, they tend to be lazy when indoors, quickly leading to weight gain and obesity. “A Bassett Hound on a farm doing work is going to stay trim, but in the city in an apartment, yes, he will get fat,” Dr. Chilla says. “If the owner is gone a lot, they may just leave food out for the dog to eat as needed, and those dogs tend to be fat,” she adds. Don’t leave a lot of food out when you’re away at work. The Basset will eat it all.

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Labradors

“Labs tend to eat everything they see,” Dr. Chilla says. The Labrador retriever, known as one of the greediest breeds of dog, is hard-wired to overeat, research suggests. The gene affected is thought to be important in controlling how the brain recognizes hunger and the feeling of being full after eating.

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Cocker Spaniel

Cocker Spaniels are sporting dogs that should weigh between 20 and 30 pounds. However, they are often spoiled. Cockers can also have hypothyroidism, which is the underproduction of thyroid hormone, causing weight gain and tiredness, according to Vet Street. If your dog weighs too much and drinks a lot of water, has increased appetite, dry skin, and a dull coat, he or she may have an under-active thyroid.

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Chihuahuas

Dr. Chilla includes Chihuahuas on the list of most often overweight and obese dogs she sees in her practice. They are also the kind people love to carry, limiting the amount of exercises the dogs engage in. The problem is that Chihuahuas are very small dogs in general – just about 5-6 pounds – and even the smallest amount of extra weight can cause serious health problems.

15 Dog Breeds That Are Prone to Obesity