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    VCA Neshaminy Animal Hospital

    Helping pet owners keep their furry friends in shape while everyone’s cooped up at home

    submitted by VCA Neshaminy

    With social distancing and staying at home being the new norm, everyone, including pets are experiencing head-spinning lifestyle changes.

    The silver lining is that you’re spending more time with your pets, and can do more than ever to help get them into tip top shape during this downtime.

    We can help pet owners keep their pets healthy by encouraging them to do three simple things every day: 1) feed them an appropriate diet, 2) exercise with them, and 3) keep them at a healthy weight.

    Pet owners can make the most of this time together by keeping their pets active. Now’s a great time to get creative and come up with a new daily exercise routine that includes a variety of activities that keeps pets moving. Exercising with pets provides benefits at both ends of the leash. If we overlook this, our pets might end up putting on more pounds, which can exacerbate underlying health problems, joint health being one of the most obvious. 

    It’s important that pet owners focus on both the physical and mental health of their pets. Exercise is one of the best ways to keep both mind and body healthy. Pet owners can come up with two to three simple physical activities they can do together with their dog or cat and schedule 15 to 20 minutes twice a day to complete these activities.

    Have them do the same to help their dog or cat exercise their brain: Something as simple as placing some kibble from their morning meal inside a food puzzle is a great way to help dogs and cats exercise both their brain and body. Another simple activity would be to play a fun game of hide and seek with your pet.

    Pet owners can focus on measures that are in their control, things like keeping their pets active and eating healthy. By keeping pets on a healthy diet, appropriate for their age and condition, and keeping them moving, we can often help them from gaining weight, which could lead to other health problems like diabetes, heart disease, and arthritis. If we keep at it and make it part of our new daily routine, a nutritious diet, exercise, and keeping them at a proper weight will keep our pets healthy today, tomorrow, and for many years ahead.

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