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Tackling the Purr-sistent Problem: PDSA's Big Weigh In Targets Pet Obesity

Just like humans, our furry companions require a balanced diet and ample exercise to lead fulfilling lives. Over the past decade, the PDSA Animal Wellbeing (PAW) Report has been a crucial insight into the lives of pets in the UK, revealing alarming trends in the health of cats, dogs, and rabbits. Particularly concerning is the prevalence of overweight pets, a growing issue that puts our beloved animals at risk of serious health problems. In response to this concerning trend, PDSA's Big Weigh In is making a return in 2024.

The Weighty Issue

PDSA's Big Weigh In Targets Pet Obesity

Data from the PDSA Animal Wellbeing Report consistently indicates that a significant number of cats and dogs in the UK are grappling with excess weight, putting them in jeopardy of developing health complications such as diabetes and urinary tract disease. Shockingly, the latest report reveals that 54% of pet owners are unaware of their pet's ideal weight, while a staggering 82% lack knowledge about their pet's body condition score, a crucial tool developed by veterinarians to assess body fat.

The Big Weigh In Initiative

To address this growing concern and educate pet owners about the importance of maintaining a healthy weight for their pets, the PDSA's Big Weigh In is set to roll out once again in 2024. This initiative encourages dog and cat owners across the UK to schedule a FREE Big Weigh In appointment at their local participating veterinary practice during February and March 2024.

During these appointments, pets will be weighed, and their body condition will be scored, providing valuable insights for pet owners. Armed with this information, owners can better understand whether their pets need to shed a few pounds, gain some weight, or maintain their ideal weight.

Alarming Findings and the Path to Health

Further analysis from the PAW Report underscores the urgency of addressing pet obesity. The data reveals that 32% of dog owners and 53% of cat owners are unaware of their pets' current weights. This lack of awareness poses a serious risk to the long-term health and wellbeing of pets, potentially leading to costly weight-related illnesses.

By actively engaging with pet owners, PDSA's Big Weigh In aims to empower them with knowledge and resources to help their pets lead healthier lives. The initiative not only sheds light on the importance of maintaining a healthy weight but also offers practical solutions to mitigate the risk of weight-related health issues.

Book Your FREE Big Weigh In Appointment

To encourage pet owners to take the first step toward ensuring their pets' well-being, PDSA urges them to book a FREE Big Weigh In appointment at their nearest participating veterinary practice. This initiative not only provides vital health information but also supports owners in making informed decisions about their pets' diets and exercise routines.

As pet owners, our furry companions hold a special place in our hearts, and it's our responsibility to ensure their well-being. One common health issue affecting pets is obesity, which can lead to various health problems and a reduced quality of life. Just like in humans, maintaining a healthy weight is crucial for a pet's overall health and longevity. In this article, we'll explore practical tips on how to prevent and manage obesity in cats and dogs.

Understanding the Causes:

PDSA's Big Weigh In Targets Pet Obesity

Several factors contribute to pet obesity, including overfeeding, lack of physical activity, and poor dietary choices. Identifying these factors is the first step in addressing the issue and promoting a healthier lifestyle for your furry friends.

Portion Control:
One of the primary culprits of pet obesity is overfeeding. Establishing proper portion control is essential to prevent excessive calorie intake. Consult with your veterinarian to determine the appropriate amount of food for your pet based on factors such as age, breed, and activity level. Avoid giving in to those pleading eyes and stick to the recommended portion sizes.

Choose a Balanced Diet:
Selecting a high-quality, nutritionally balanced pet food is crucial for maintaining your pet's health. Avoid feeding them excessive treats, table scraps, or high-calorie human food. Opt for Lite Dog Food, such as Autarky Mature Lite Succulent Salmon or Chudleys Lite, with appropriate protein levels and minimal fillers to ensure your pet receives the necessary nutrients without unnecessary calories.

PDSA's Big Weigh In Targets Pet Obesity

Regular Exercise:
Just like humans, pets need regular physical activity to stay in shape. Incorporate daily walks, playtime, and interactive toys to keep your pets active. Cats may benefit from climbing structures or cat toys that encourage movement, while dogs thrive on games of fetch, agility training, and other engaging dog toys.

PDSA's Big Weigh In Targets Pet Obesity

Monitor Treat Intake:
While treats are a great way to reward good behavior or provide a little extra love, they can contribute significantly to weight gain. Choose low-calorie treats or consider breaking larger treats into smaller portions. Be mindful of the overall treat intake throughout the day, as these can add up quickly.


Preventing and managing obesity in your cat or dog requires a combination of proper nutrition, regular exercise, and vigilant monitoring. By taking proactive steps to address potential weight issues, you can ensure your pet enjoys a happy, healthy, and active life. Remember, your veterinarian is an essential partner in your pet's well-being, so consult with them regularly for personalized guidance on maintaining a healthy weight for your furry friend.

As pet obesity continues to pose a significant threat to the health and happiness of cats and dogs across the UK, PDSA's Big Weigh In stands as a beacon of hope. By offering free appointments and educational resources, this initiative empowers pet owners to take control of their pets' well-being, reducing the risk of weight-related illnesses and ensuring that our beloved companions lead longer, healthier, and happier lives. Book your FREE Big Weigh In appointment today and join the movement toward a healthier future for our furry friends.

To find your nearest participating Veterinary practise please click here

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