THE (VERY REAL) COST OF AN OBESE DOG 0

THE (VERY REAL) COST OF AN OBESE DOG

Over the past 10 years, the number of obese dogs has doubled from 10% to 20% of the US dog population1.  Experts are divided on exactly what is causing this health crisis, but some of the more common explanations are:

  • Overfeeding
  • Lack of exercise
  • Carbohydrate-heavy dog food
  • Pet parents don’t know how to identify if their pet has a weight problem
  • Vets are hesitant to tell pet parents their dog has a weight problem

WHY DOES THIS MATTER?

According to the Association to Prevent Pet Obesity, obese pets are risk for a variety of health problems including:

  • A reduced lifespan and reduced quality of life
  • Chronic inflammation
  • Skin disorders
  • Hip dysplasia
  • Cancer
  • Kidney problems
  • Respiratory disorders

In addition, obesity-related illnesses cost US pet parents over $250 million in 2017:

  • According to a study released in January 2018, Nationwide Insurance indicated that they paid $62 million in obesity-related insurance payments in 20172.
  • According to the US pet insurance trade association, NAPHIA, Nationwide has a roughly 40% share of the US pet insurance market so pet obesity cost all US insurers about $150 million.
  • If you include ALL pets (not just the ones with insurance) and the total cost is staggering, in excess of $250 million a year.

Sources:

  1. Association for Pet Obesity Prevention, 2016 and 2007 reports
  2. Nationwide Insurance, January 2018

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