Weight loss for dogs is not a matter of willpower for the dog. You, however, may need to use willpower to resist those begging eyes. Remember, food is not love! For most dogs, the traditional diet-and-exercise plan does the trick.Another way to boost your dog's weight loss plan is to get involved with agility or another dog sport. You will be working with experts who want your dog to succeed but will not push him. In addition to losing weight, your dog will have a new skill. Obviously,your dog will need more exercise to lose weight. If you do not already walk your dog daily for a specific period of time, start now. Schedule times to play fetch or tug-of-war. If you have an exercise schedule, increase the frequency and difficulty if possible - this will be good for you, too. The most important thing is to make a commitment to a plan and stick with it. Your dog is at your mercy.
Many dogs will be happy to be getting more exercise and attention, and they will joyfully await their scheduled exercise sessions. However dogs that are very overweight and out-of-shape may pose a challenge. Some dogs will simply stop in the middle of a walk, refusing to continue. This is probably because they are winded and/or in pain. To be safe, stay close to home and keep a slower pace. These dogs benefit from several short walks a day rather than one or two long ones. Try feeding two or three small meals each day, rather than one large meal; this may help reduce begging. Another trick is measuring the food allotment for the day, then giving half for breakfast, with the rest fed throughout the day in place of treats and rewards. Be sure you accurately measure the amount.Brisk walking, jogging and running off-lead (in a safe place) are best. Swimming is an excellent alternative, especially for arthritic and lame dogs.
Signs to check for to figure out if your dog is overweight.
Looking at your dog from the side, you should be able to see the upward tuck of the abdomen. An overweight dog will have very little or no tuck. Viewing your dog from above, there should be a moderate narrowing at the waist just past the ribcage. A straight or bulging line from the ribcage to the hips indicates an overweight dog.