Weight Loss for Dogs and Cats
Hi Dr. Mary Stauder from Manchester West Veterinary Hospital.
Today I want to talk about something new and exciting from Hill’s Petfoods.
They have come up with a metabolic diet to encourage weight loss.
Hill’s, as we know, is a pioneer in the nutrition field of dogs and cats, and they’re constantly updating and doing research. So they looked at some of their diet foods that they have that are currently on the market; r/d, w/d, prescription diets, where they work and where they fail. And what they’ve come up with is this metabolic line of foods, doesn’t have initials, it’s just metabolic.
And what they have come up with is a brand new food, it’s not a reformulation. Using a lot of research, knowing that the nutrigenomics working with the dog and cat’s genome has worked in the past using certain foods and amino acids and combinations of foods to trigger the metabolism.
Then adding the particular ingredients and some new things to encourage the dogs to eat the food, the cats to enjoy the food, and to not have to measure and be ultra-strict, and exercise your dog 20 hours a day, you know, and still get the weight loss.
So they’ve come up with a very realistic and very friendly plan. They’ve worked in a number of factors. One is making sure that we get the correct goal weight. They have gone online and made up a program at their Hill’s website that we log onto. And we enter in our patients and then we measure them. They’ve come up with four measurements along with their weights, their breed, age, to adapt to what the dog should be. So it allows for the big boned dogs, the fluffy dogs, and such. So for example, what we’re going to do with little Chloe here…and Kelly is helping me out…we’re just going to make several measurements and we enter them into the computer, and I’ll show you the print out that will come out later.
Now Chloe is a nice sized little dachshund, but she’s just such a convenient little girl to use. So one thing we do is measure her head length. We go from between their eyes to the notch on the back of their head. So, Chloe would measure about 9. Then we measure around her head, and so we’re about at a 25, 25 centimeters. We measure her length of her forearm, from her elbow, all the way down to the top of her pad. We’re going to measure to the top of the pad right there. And it’s a little weird, they don’t understand. It’s an eleven. And we measure her back leg, very similar. The heel or tarsus here down to the top of the pad, measures seven. So we would enter those measurements into our computer program with our iPad and we come up with a profile.
This is a different patient, a Wheaton. We get a profile and what they figure out is exactly, based on those measurements, the weight, and the breed, what this dog should weigh. And it gives us a body scale index or a body mass index. This is the percentage of body fat and how overweight they are. So this dog is reading in the 50 percentile. It is recommended the dog lose… go down to 39 lbs. from 59 lbs. So how do we do that? They actually give us a scale on the recommended speed of weight loss. So it’s nice and gradual. They recommend a 0.7 percent weight loss a week, so a nice gradual weight loss. And then the next step of course is the diet choices. This we picked our metabolic diet, we can figure up how many cups, cans, even treats can be added in so we get a universal coverage for them. It will tell us exactly how much to feed and how much the cost is per day.
So we can realistically talk to you about how to feed your patient here. The next step is introducing the diet. It’s very simple, like changing any food, a simple mixture, maybe a side by side, and we get the dogs eating it. And then we measure every month. We can measure weekly or monthly depending on how often you can bring the patient back in. But then each time you bring them in we’ll reenter the measurement, maybe take some changes in the measurements and the weights, and put them in our computer program. And it will readjust and keep track. So this will just really exciting. And we do have formulas for dogs and cats, canned/dry. Treats, these are the dog treats, we do have cat treats. So this is something I’m really quite excited about. We have started a number of patients on it.
It seems like both the dogs and the cats are accepting it well. And so far in the dog patients we have had weight loss, significant weight loss.
Our kitty cats haven’t come in because they don’t like to ride in the car as much.
Yes, we are definitely seeing some improvements.
If you think this could help out your pet, we’ll be glad to talk to you about it.
I’m Dr. Mary Stauder, Manchester West Veterinary Hospital.