Do you have a Beagle? Are you worried your Beagle could be overweight, but you’re not sure? If so, then you’ve come to the right place!
In this article, we’ll take a look at Beagles and what happens if they gain too much weight! Let’s get started!
What is a Beagle?
Beagles are compact dogs, which are easy to care for and generally have very happy personalities. For these reasons, Beagles have long been a family favorite when it comes to dogs. What’s more, Beagles are also used as working dogs! They have excellent scent detection abilities, making them a natural when searching for drugs, illegal foods, weapons, and more.
What’s more, Beagles are known for loving their food! They eat just about anything from their own food to what they find in the wastebasket. But it’s their love of food that can get them into trouble if they eat too much. Beagles are known for having a tendency to become overweight or obese.
What is a Healthy Weight for Beagles?
The healthy weight for Beagles is somewhere between 18 to 35 lbs. You should be able to feel their ribs; however, their ribs should be covered by a small amount of fat. You shouldn’t be able to see the dog’s ribs but feel them.
You’ll find another fat deposit near the base of the Beagle’s tail. This should be smooth, without any ridges.
In addition, your Beagle should have a waistline when seen from above. The dog’s waist is found just behind the ribs. The area just behind the ribs should also be easily visible and smaller than the dog’s chest.
Do Beagles Really Tend to Gain Weight?
It’s hard to believe that a dog as active as a Beagle could become fat! When the dogs are young, they’re full of energy. However, as they age, Beagles naturally begin to slow down. If they don’t exercise as much, they can start to gain weight or become obese.
And don’t forget the fact that Beagles love to eat! They may eat anything and everything, which can make them gain weight pretty quickly.
In order to stay healthy and at a healthy weight, Beagles need about 40 minutes of exercise twice a day. This will help keep a dog from gaining much weight.
In addition, it’s essential to watch out for medical conditions that can cause a Beagle to gain weight. These include heart disease, hypothyroidism, and Cushing’s disease.
Is My Beagle Fat?
Remember that a healthy Beagle should weigh between 18 and 35lbs. Having said that, there will be some Beagles who may be a little bit smaller or larger. For instance, if your dog was the runt of the litter, he may be a little smaller than his siblings and other Beagles.
Overweight and obese Beagles also have trouble grooming themselves. Because they have so much fat, the dog isn’t able to reach areas to clean or scratch himself. In addition, you may notice that your Beagle becomes very tired and over-exerts easily.
However, you can still tell if your Beagle is overweight or not. If you can feel his ribs but not see them, then he’s the right weight. And if you can see your dog’s waistline, then he’s most likely the right weight.
On the other hand, if you can easily see your Beagle’s ribs, then he’s underweight, which is also a problem.
Can Being Overweight Really Hurt a Beagle?
The short answer is yes; even being overweight (not obese) can be bad for a Beagle. They have a higher chance of developing serious medical conditions such as:
- Developing ligament and tendon problems
- Breathing issues
- Heart disease
- Short life expectancy
What’s more, if your dog all of a sudden gains weight, this can be a sign of an underlying medical condition. Two examples of sudden weight gain are Addison’s disease and Cushing’s disease.
Addison’s disease causes your dog to produce less than normal amounts of hormones. If your dog has this condition, you may see that he gains weight, becomes depressed & lethargic, and starts vomiting regularly.
With Cushing’s disease, a dog produces too much cortisol. The symptoms are weight gain, loss of hair, and muscle weakness.
So, if your dog seems to suddenly gain weight, it may not be his diet. There could be an underlying health issue. For this reason, it’s always best to take your canine companion to the vet for a checkup.
How to Help Your Beagle Lose Weight
Helping your Beagle lose weight isn’t easy; however, with the right guidance from your vet, it is possible to help your fur baby lose weight and recover his health.
Some ways you can help your Beagle lose weight include:
Cutting down on snacks: you can cut down or cut out the snacks your dog has every day. Treats can be filled with calories, even if they are healthy snacks. To start with, give your Beagle about half the number of treats he’s used to getting. You can even cut the snacks in half and give him only half of a treat at the normal snack times. That’s a great way to start! As he becomes used to having half a snack, then cut the snacks down further. Just do so gradually. This helps your dog to adjust over time, rather than all of a sudden.
Reduce portion sizes: next, you can use the same method with your dog’s meals. Just cut his portion sizes down gradually. You can start out by cutting back about 5% for a week or two. Then cut back a little more until your dog is losing weight gradually. However, you also want to make sure he’s not starving. This is why it’s imperative to speak to your vet and obtain their advice for helping your dog cut down on food.
The vet may also be able to suggest a specific dog food to help your canine companion lose weight. There are prescription weight loss dog foods or OTC dog food formulations that may help your Beagle lose weight.
What About More Exercise for My Beagle?
If your Beagle has been active, then a little more exercise may be a great idea! Here, again, it’s best to ask the vet for advice and guidance.
On the other hand, if your Beagle has been lying around and not very active, then you may need to gradually increase his exercise over time. This way, you can help him avoid injuries and becoming overtired.
So, there you have it! We’ve covered how to tell if your Beagle is overweight or not and provided information on how to start your overweight Beagle on a diet & exercise regimen.
If you’re ever worried about your Beagle’s weight, then be sure to consult the vet. It’s also a good idea to see the vet to have your dog checked before started him on a weight loss regimen. The vet will be able to ensure your fur baby is healthy and ready to start losing weight safely.