Did you know most pets are overweight? Learn about the risks and causes of weight gain in French Bulldogs and how to keep your Frenchie a healthy weight!
It is advised that you speak to your veterinarian for professional advice regarding your Frenchie’s health. Use this information only as a guideline in helping you determine if you should seek professional advice.
The obesity epidemic has been sweeping America for years. Humans aren’t the only ones affected — our cats and dogs are just as susceptible (if not more) to obesity as a result of poor nutrition and lifestyle.
By now we all should understand the importance of maintaining a healthy body weight for ourselves, why should our pets be any different?
It seems like common sense, however, a large majority of pets actually are overweight and their owners may be completely oblivious.
Frenchies already have it hard when it comes to their predisposition to a variety of health issues. By keeping them a healthy weight, they’ll live longer, happier lives.
When your Frenchie is overweight, they’re at a much higher risk of developing this list of serious medical conditions.
Not sure if you’re overfeeding your French Bulldog? Well if you don’t know, there’s a pretty good chance you might be.
As you could probably guess, if your Frenchie is just lounging around the house, munching on food most of their time, they’re bound to put on a few pounds.
Some dog breeds are more likely to gain weight than others.
Frenchies are certainly one of those breeds, along with many other brachycephalic dog breeds such as shih-tzus and pugs.
It’s pretty easy for Frenchies to put on the weight, but tough to shed the extra weight. Be extra-conscientious before overfeeding your puppy or sharing human food.
Older dogs are more likely to live sedentary lifestyles and as a result, be overweight.
In some cases, excessive weight gain could be caused by a more serious illness or health issue… be sure to visit your vet if suspect something is up.
Dogs that are neutered or spayed are at a slightly higher risk of weight gain according to a study published in the July 15, 2013 issue of the Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association for two years following their surgery.
|1 week||1.2 - 2.2 lbs|
|4 weeks||2.0 - 4.2 lbs|
|8 weeks||5.0 - 6.9 lbs|
|12 weeks||6.2 - 9 lbs|
|16 weeks||9 - 12 lbs|
|18 weeks||12 - 15 lbs|
|22 weeks||13 - 16 lbs|
|26 weeks||16 - 18 lbs|
|Adult||23 - 28 lbs|
A chart is good to get a general idea of your Frenchie’s weight, but it’s not definitive.
Standing over your Frenchie, you should be able to feel their ribs, but not see them.
If you can see their ribs, they may be too skinny.
If you can’t see their ribs, place your hands on the side of their chest.
If you still can’t distinguish their rib cage from their waist, they could be overweight.
Overall, the shape of your Frenchie should be more hourglass-shaped than oval-shaped.
If you have ever spent a decent amount of time in the gym, you’ll probably understand the importance of diet in maintaining a healthy weight. When us humans start to gain weight, we notice it when we look in the mirror and can make changes to our diet and activity level accordingly. Your Frenchie doesn’t have this luxury and it’s imperative that you keep a close eye on their weight as they’re notorious for putting on weight like it’s nothing.
Before we get started, let’s make sure everybody’s on the same page. Perhaps your kids have been feeding your little Frenchie french fries under the table unbeknownst. Whatever it is, make sure your entire family is committed to your Frenchie’s weight loss plan. No matter how often you go for walks, if your pup is scoffing down the leftovers or having a few too many midnight snacks, you won’t see any results.
First things first, you should take a look at your Frenchie’s diet. Are their meal portions too big? Are they gobbling up table scraps? Too many training treats?
PetMD recommends cutting food intake by 25 percent. Increase exercise slowly each day.
Despite controversy over raw diets, there have been many benefits associated with them; one of them being weight loss. These diets provide your dog with much more protein than dry food, which is essential for muscle strength. This means the weight loss will be fat, not muscle mass. Raw diets also keep your French Bulldog feeling “full” after meals, meaning they won’t be scrounging around the house for crumbs.
It has been shown that multiple, smaller meals are beneficial in weight loss when compared to one or two large meals every day. This is because your French Bulldog’s blood sugar level will be more consistent throughout the day, meaning their bodies are less likely to store the excess calories.
Nobody knows your Frenchie’s health better than your veterinarian. They will know the best brand and portion sizes specifically for your pup. If necessary, your veterinarian may also prescribe diet dog food for your Frenchie.
Just like we wouldn’t be able to hit the treadmill for an intense hour of cardio after a year hiatus from the gym, don’t expect your Frenchie to be any different.
If you aren’t already taking your Frenchie for regular, daily walks, begin doing so immediately. A ten-minute walk is much better than nothing. Frenchies love exploring the great outdoors and it’s a great stress reliever for us humans too! You can even kill two birds with one stone and use getting your Frenchie to a healthy weight as a way to ease into a physical exercise habit. You and your Frenchie will be happier and healthier!
It is recommended to walk your Frenchie for 30 minutes twice a day, however, this may not fit everybody’s circumstances. You may live in a high-rise apartment in the heart of the city or simply not feel like going for a walk after a long day at the office. Regardless of what it is, there’s definitely a way to squeeze in some exercise!
During the summer in hotter areas such as Florida or Texas, you and your Frenchie may find the heat unbearable. It’s important that you don’t let them overexert themselves as they’re prone to heatstroke. A small, children’s pool works perfectly for cooling them off!
The same goes for extremely cold climates as well. If you notice your Frenchie shivering when outside, a sweater is a worthwhile investment. Be sure to give extra cuddles when you’re back inside to warm them up!
The key to weight loss in both humans and animals is the same: diet and exercise. With enough persistence, you’ll achieve your goals in no time! If your Frenchie is experiencing unexplainable weight gain or you’re not seeing much results from your diet, we recommend consulting with your veterinarian.
Did we miss anything? Got a suggestion? Leave a comment down below and we’ll get back to you!