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Treats lead to pet obesity crisis


Wednesday February 10th 2016

An obesity crisis is affecting pets in Scotland, caused by snacks, treats and leftovers, a charity is warning. The People's Dispensary for Sick Animals (PDSA) says that well-meaning but misguided owners are contributing to the situation.

They are feeding their domestic animals takeaway leftovers and alcohol, as well as crisps, chips, cake, cheese, chocolate and other potentially harmful snacks.

More than five million pets in Britain are given treats on a daily basis. But such "treats" can shorten lifespans, the PDSA claims, while alcohol and chocolate are both poisonous to domestic animals.

One in four cats and one in three dogs are either obese or overweight. This puts them in danger of getting diabetes, cancer and heart disease, as well as other dangerous illnesses.

Vicki Larkham-Jones, a vet for the PDSA, says that owners are endangering their animals by feeding them "unsuitable" sugary and fatty food which makes them obese and erodes teeth. The warning comes as the PDSA started its yearly Pet Fit Club contest aimed at helping pets lose weight.

Copyright Press Association 2016