A Common (But Serious) Problem
Susie was out on a hike with her family. It was a glorious mid-spring afternoon. The sun was shining and there wasn’t a cloud in the sky. Susie waited all week for this. It was her very favorite activity!
When Susie wasn’t sniffing the ground during her hikes she was chasing chipmunks and squirrels. She seemed happy as can be! But she started panting heavily after only 20 minutes even though it was only 68 degrees.
After half an hour she seemed exhausted, was panting loudly, and was lagging behind on the walk. She showed no further interest in sniffing out or chasing critters. By 45 minutes she laid down and wouldn’t go any further. Sometimes she even had to be carried back to the car.
Unlike Susie, Otis didn’t get out much. He had actually only been outside on his own a few times in his life. His hunting was confined to moving from one windowsill to another watching the birds at the feeder.
Most of his trips out were in a carrier and not very pleasant. They usually involved going to the groomer to get his mats shaved or going to the vet for an enema. When the cat box came out of its hiding place, Otis disappeared. He was nowhere to be found.
Susie and Otis both have the same problem. It limits and shortens their lives. They’re not as happy as they deserve to be. Susie’s beloved walks are getting shorter and shorter, and Otis can barely groom himself or push hard enough to pass his stools.
Susie and Otis are overweight. Borderline obese in fact. Unfortunately, their guardians don’t appreciate the import of the problem. They think their companion animals are just “big-boned”.
The Preventable Epidemic of Dogs, Cats (and people)
But this is no laughing matter. The percent of companion animals that are overweight is rapidly growing. At an alarming rate. It’s now even gotten to the point where many people don’t even know what optimal weight looks like.
Weight loss and remaining lean is critical for a well-balanced (and dis-ease free) life and longevity.
Losing weight is simple but not always so easy. It is frequently related to eating the wrong diet. Most commonly a low quality carbohydrate and filler-laden dry food diet. This is is especially true for cats.
The healthiest diet and fastest way to lose weight in my experience is raw meat-based.
However this is not the only healthful way to lose weight.
The metabolic processes supported by the calories supplied by this (and the prior) slow-cooked fresh food diet recipes are critical to proper physiologic functioning and weight loss. The high quality carbohydrates in it promote the process. They aid increased activity and caloric expenditure.
It is also important to restrict high carbohydrate content treats. Fresh green beans, broccoli and cauliflower make wonderful and healthful low calorie treats that many dogs love. Cats not so much (though some cats do love veggies).
Why Is Losing Weight So Hard for Some Dogs and Cats?
However, in some patients even tiny quantities of fresh food (even raw meat) and hours of activity per day isn’t sufficient. Sometimes you try everything and seemingly do everything right, but they just can not lose weight.
These animals often have an internal metabolic defect. The term “metabolic syndrome” is used for some people who just can’t lose weight and is now also recognized in animals.
In my experience, careful and persistent homeopathic prescribing can help most of these patients.
Hailey is a great example of a yellow lab who just could not lose weight. She ate only a few ounces of a varied raw meat diet and had hours of daily activity. With continued homeopathic internal treatment however the pounds melted away and stayed off!
Under active thyroid function is another common cause for stubborn obesity. Thyroid hormone is the chief determinant of metabolism. Insufficient quantity of it or improper conversion to the active form are common causes for weight gain and seemingly impossible weight loss.
Whole thyroid gland extracts combined with good food, exercise and homeopathic treatment can help boost metabolism and promote weight loss.
Start your companion animal’s weight loss by feeding a fresh food diet. These simple and easy Crock-Pot recipes can help.
A Low Calorie Fresh Food Recipe for Your Dogs and Cats
Here’s this week’s low calorie recipe:
10 ounces organic chopped kale
4 cups of cubed organic zucchini and/or summer quash (we used one of each)
3 organic chicken breasts
1 cup of organic amaranth
5 cups of water
This week’s stew cooked quickly. The more you chop the kale, the faster. 4-6 hours on high should do it.
Please remember that the recipe is designed to be healthful, flexible, easy, and inexpensive. It is not meant for continuous feeding. It can however be part of a fresh and varied diet (with everything fed in moderation).
Other fresh food feeding suggestions are in my free fresh food feeding toolkit that you can get here.