Humans aren’t the only ones struggling to get their summer bodies back after gaining the notorious “Quarantine 15” during lockdown.
And it’s not just because dog runs have been closed.
“People are home all day with their pet on their laps like, ‘Oh, you’re so cute. You deserve a treat,’” says Dr. Ann Hohenhaus, a veterinarian at New York City’s Animal Medical Center. “These fun food treats that they love are in the rank of burritos and ice cream for us humans — and can pack on the pounds really quickly.”
Now, some cat and dog owners are putting their four-legged pals on strict diet plans.
Hohenhaus advises owners hoping to help pets slim down make sure that only 10 percent of the animals’ daily caloric intake comes from treats. Carving out time for daily exercise is important.
“People with little dogs and cats are very tempted just to pick them up and carry them around because they’re cuddly, but they need to walk and they need to do stairs,” says Hohenhaus. “[Otherwise,] they lose that muscle strength.”
Just be sure to consult a veterinarian before changing your pet’s diet or exercise regimen, advises Hohenhaus.