Obese Dog Medical Problems

An obese dog is more susceptible to a number of medical conditions because of the elevated glucose level and the extra amount of fat that puts additional pressure on the joints and on the heart. If you have an overweight dog, you should seriously consider a slimming diet to prevent the possible health problems associated with obese canines.

Diabetes Mellitus

Overweight dogs are prone to diabetes, having a constant increased blood glucose level. The insulin is secreted in higher amounts, however, at some point the body will not be able to cope with producing increased amounts of insulin and diabetes will occur.

A diabetic dog has increased thirst and hunger, urinates more frequently and will lose weight.

Diabetes may be controlled with insulin shots and weight loss is strongly recommended.


A dog with extra weight is more likely to develop arthritis at a younger age. Typically, dogs develop arthritis after the age of 8; obese dogs may have joint problems earlier as the extra weight adds stress on the joints causing swelling and pain.

In addition, the extra weight may add pressure on ligaments and tendons causing additional soreness. The ligaments in the knees and feet may get damaged, incapacitating the dog to walk or jump; in severe cases, surgery will be needed.

Arthritis is not a treatable condition, but may be managed with anti-inflammatory and pain medication. Weight loss is compulsory to reduce the stress on the joints, tendons and ligaments.

Heart Problems

An overweight pet is susceptible to heart or cardiovascular disease. The heart has additional workload, having to pump more blood to the fat tissues also. In time, the heart will get exhausted, the walls of the heart chambers may weaken or the blood vessels may dilate, causing heart problems.

Heart failure is a serious health issue and may result in death.

Elevated Blood Pressure

Obese dogs have hypertension, which can lead to heart disease.

Hypertension can be controlled with medication and a special diet.

Breathing Problems

Often, overweight dogs develop breathing problems. The lungs may be pressured by the fat in the area, not allowing the dog to breathe normally. The lungs are also over solicited, as they need to provide more oxygen to the fatty tissues.

Liver Disease

Obese dogs develop liver disease, as the liver is the first place where the body deposits the fat. An excess of fat in the liver causes hepatic lipidosis and this may lead to liver failure.

Skin Infections

Obese dogs have a lot of excess skin, which gathers into small pockets where bacteria and fungi thrive; this may lead to reoccurring infections, itchiness and an unhealthy skin.

Unhealthy Coat

Overweight dogs have unhealthy coat, which is directly related to an unhealthy skin.

Obese dogs are exposed to a lot of serious medical conditions that may be avoided if the dog has a normal weight. Weight loss is possible through reducing your dog’s calorie intake and a bit of exercise on a daily basis. Think about your pet’s health and remember that a fit dog lives a longer and happier life.