Yorkies are known to be excellent eaters. On the other hand, over eating and poor nutrition put them at risk of gaining weight, which can lead to a variety of negative health effects.
Obesity and weight problems in Yorkies
Often, lovers of Yorkshire Terriers acquire dogs of this breed due to the fact that you can not walk with them. If the pet eats well and moves a little, which is typical for “apartment” Yorkies, then he has various weight problems.
What should be the weight of the Yorkie?
It is generally agreed upon that Yorkshire Terriers should not exceed a weight of more than 3.1–3.2 kg in order to reach their full potential. If there is an excess of more than 300 grams, then we can already talk about obesity, which is something that must begin to be fought against as soon as possible.
Causes of excess weight in Yorkshire Terriers
It is a common misconception that Yorkshire Terriers are a finicky breed when it comes to eating, but this could not be further from the truth. Yorkshire Terriers are known to like a broad variety of foods. Even after they have finished their meal, Yorkies will look at you with eyes that appear to be asking for more food, despite the fact that they are very small dogs. It is the responsibility of the owners if the dog has a finicky eating habit. In addition, some Yorkies just have an excellent appetite! Of course, it is quite difficult to turn a pet’s adorable eyes away while it is pleading for food, and as a result, owners frequently do one of the most widespread errors when they start giving their pet treats in between main meals.
In addition, owners of Yorkies chose this breed because they do not need to take their dogs on strenuous walks on a regular basis. Even though a Yorkshire Terrier does not require daily long walks like a German Shepherd, Boxer, Poodle, or Husky, all dogs, regardless of breed, should have some form of physical activity. Problems with obesity begin to manifest themselves when the dogs only move around a little bit, go for short walks, and are kept as “apartment” pets; at the same time, they are fed a wholesome, high-calorie diet in which the energy value of the food is greater than what the body requires.
The main causes of overweight and obesity in Yorkies include:
- low level of activity, sedentary lifestyle;
- improperly balanced diet;
- violation of the diet;
- feeding dogs with forbidden treats – sweets, muffins, smoked meats, sausages;
- Incorrect portion sizes.
What threatens obesity?
According to numerous veterinary studies, it can be noted that overweight can threaten Yorkies with the following health problems:
- heart disease;
- respiratory disorders;
- susceptibility to diabetes;
- impaired liver function;
- diseases of the joints associated with increased stress;
- increase in blood pressure;
- decreased immunity;
- deterioration of the appearance of the coat;
- Low life expectancy.
According to statistics, more than half of domestic dogs have weight problems.
How to deal with excess weight in Yorkies
If the dog is overweight, the owner will need to completely change the dog’s food, extend the length of the walks they take, gradually increase the amount of physical exercise they perform, and get the pet interested in playing games outside. It is not necessary to immediately “plant” the Yorkie on a tight diet or to substantially restrict the amount of feedings the Yorkie receives. This method has the potential to cause issues in the gastrointestinal tract as well as disruptions in the metabolic processes. If the animal is overweight, the owner should progressively lower the amount of calories and the nutritional value of the diet while also decreasing the portion size of the animal’s meals. It is recommended that the morning meal be higher in calories than the evening meal. For instance, you could feed the dog food that contains meat in the morning, and then in the evening, you could feed it vegetarian meals that were seasoned with vegetable oil or dairy products like natural yogurt or cottage cheese. It is possible to acquire at pet stores food that is specifically formulated for overweight dogs in the event that the dog is fed dry food
How to avoid weight problems in Yorkies?
To prevent obesity in York, it is necessary to monitor its nutrition. You can feed your pet dry food, specialized ready-made canned food or self-cooked food. Dry food has many advantages:
- it contains all the vitamins and minerals necessary for dogs;
- it does not need to be cooked, which saves time and is very convenient on the trip;
- Feed manufacturers produce products that are suitable for a particular breed.
Despite the above advantages, there are also disadvantages of dry food. Such nutrition can lead to stomach problems. If you feed your pet dry food, always make sure they have fresh water.
Ready-made foods in cans can serve as a suitable substitute for foods of this type.
Canned food, while speedy, delicious, and handy, can contribute to the development of tartar, which can be identified by an unpleasant odor coming from the mouth. At the same time, you should make sure that your pet does not consume foods that are very sweet, fatty, or spicy. Raw river fish, sausages, sausage and smoked meats, white bread, and beans are some of the foods that Yorkies are not allowed to consume. It is imperative that Yorkshire Terriers consume beef that is either raw or boiling, as well as vegetables, cottage cheese, egg yolk, and dairy products. Because the food in York is prepared individually, it is required to add in supplemental forms of particular vitamins.
Putting together a meal plan for your pet will do wonders for his overall well-being. Beginning around the age of 10 months, adult Yorkies should consume food twice daily. When puppies are three to four months old, they are fed five times per day; when they are five to six months old, they are fed four times per day; when they are seven to nine months old, they are fed three times per day. This article contains more reading for those interested in learning more about the proper diet for Yorkshire Terrier puppies.
The key to a Yorkie’s good health and overall well-being will be a well-organized routine and diet that it follows on a regular basis.