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Are Greyhounds Prone to Obesity?

Are Greyhounds Prone to Obesity?

Reading time: 7 minutes.

Since obesity is a significant health issue in dogs that can overall affect their lifespan, many greyhound owners find themselves wondering if their dog breed is prone to obesity? 

Obesity is a major issue in dogs, and it will affect the lifespan of your greyhound.  A greyhound’s healthy weight should be approximately 60 pounds. However, a greyhound is deemed obese if it weighs more than 80 pounds. At this stage, those are fat rolls, not ribs, and allowing your greyhound to gain weight is endangering its health.

Continue reading to learn more about whether greyhounds are prone to obesity, what is considered a healthy weight for a greyhound, the signs your greyhound is obese, health problems caused by obesity in greyhounds, and more.

Are Greyhounds Prone to Obesity?

If overfed, greyhounds are just as prone as any other breed to become obese. Some breeds are known to be more susceptible to fat breakdown than others, but the greyhound is not one of them.

Only the tips of your greyhound’s hipbones and the outline of a few ribs should be visible. It’s too fat if your greyhound’s hind end is smooth and there are no visible bones. If your greyhound also has no visible ribs, it may be overweight, depending on whether it has a naturally thin or rounded rib cage. 

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Overall, your greyhound is termed fat if it weighs 80 pounds or more or has gained 10, 15, or even more pounds above its racing weight.

What is Considered a Healthy Weight for a Greyhound?

You should be able to see the contour of your greyhound’s final three ribs, the tips of the hip bones, and a little of the spine as a rule of thumb. Furthermore, the optimal greyhound weight is around 35 pounds higher than the racing weight.

There should be a lovely bend between the end of the ribcage and the thighs when the greyhound is seen sideways. However, allowing your greyhound to gain weight puts unnecessary strain on the heart, tendons, ligaments, and joints, which can develop into further arthritic issues.

Signs and Symptoms that Your Greyhound is Obese?

It’s important to get expert guidance if you’re not sure whether or not your dog is overweight. Ideally, your veterinarian will be able to assist you in making this decision. However, you may search for some indications at home in-between visits. 

In greyhounds, you should be able to feel each individual rib on your dog without a thick layer of fat covering them. Your greyhound’s chest should be wider than its abdomen, with a distinct tuck-up from the chest to the stomach.

A dog with an excessive amount of weight will usually have no waist and no difference between chest and stomach. You could also notice that they pant when walking, walks a little slower than normal, or takes more naps than usual. Fortunately, learning how to assist your dog in losing weight is simple.

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Checking Your Greyhound’s Body Shape

Examining your greyhound’s body form is one of the simplest ways to determine if it is fat. If you look at your greyhound from above and see that it is chubby and oval-shaped, it is probably obese. However, if your greyhound has a distinct waist in the rear and a straight shape along the sides, he or she is likely to be a healthy weight.

Examine Your Greyhound’s Eating Behaviours

Overweight or obese greyhounds are frequently lethargic and spend a lot of time scarfing down their food. If you notice that your greyhound has become sedentary, has difficulties walking, has difficulty breathing while walking, and appears to have overall mobility issues, they may be overweight. Allowing your greyhound to eat at will throughout the day may also contribute to obesity.

Weighing Your Greyhound

A weigh-in at your veterinarian is the most accurate way to assess whether or not your greyhound is overweight or obese. Based on the size and breed of your dog, your veterinarian can assess whether or not it is overweight. Keep in mind that the recommended weight for each breed varies. The majority of greyhounds, for example, should have visible ribs.

They’ll also look at your dog’s physique and compare it to a body condition score chart, which assesses a greyhound’s body type according to form. Scores typically range from one to nine, with one indicating extreme underweight and nine indicating excessive obesity. The ideal bodily state is somewhere in the middle, between four and five.

Health Problems in Greyhounds Caused by Obesity

Arthritis, heart disease, osteoarthritis, high blood pressure, diabetes, fatty tumors in the body, and even cancer are all long-term impacts of obesity. When extra fat in the chest prevents the lungs from adequately expanding, breathing issues develop.

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In certain circumstances, extra abdominal fat presses onto the diaphragm, resulting in less room in the chest area and limiting lung expansion. The fact that the extra weight puts more strain on the lungs on a daily basis exacerbates the condition.

Greyhounds were born to gallop about, but their health difficulties may turn what should be a joyous activity into something incredibly deadly. Many people will suffer from acute overheating as a result of their inability to evacuate heat as rapidly as they were designed to.

While the long-term repercussions are significant and can be lethal, another factor to consider is the low quality of life. Many dogs develop an intolerance to exercise and become sedentary.

How Much Should I Be Feeding My Greyhound to Maintain a Healthy Weight?

To keep your greyhound at a healthy weight, combine around 2 cups of high-quality kibble with 500g of fresh human-grade meat, half to offer two meals each day. Alternatively, 250g of chicken with 1.5 to 2 cups of kibble and 250g of meat might be served for breakfast and supper.

How to Help Your Greyhound Lose Weight?

Fortunately, there are a number of choices for helping your overweight greyhound. It’s crucial to realize that these are lifestyle changes, just like the ones you’d do to get to a healthier weight on your own.

Increase Your Greyhound’s Exercise

Although food is important, no weight-loss or health-maintenance program is complete without exercise. Walking is the most evident and necessary activity for your greyhound. Regular walks give not just physical exercise for your dog but also essential cerebral stimulation and the opportunity to sniff.

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While 20 minutes of exercise twice a day is the suggested minimum, many greyhounds may require considerably more. An hour of exercise every day is a reasonable goal for a young greyhound. If your greyhound needs to shed weight, consider increasing its existing activity routine. 

So, if you only have a little, start with short walking intervals. If you’re currently exercising, consider increasing the duration of your walk or other activity by 10-20%.

Address Overfeeding Problems

Your veterinarian may also assist you in developing a nutrition plan, eating schedule, and daily calorie intake recommendation. Since dietary protein boosts metabolism and energy expenditure, weight loss food for dogs that are high in dietary fiber and protein but low in fat is often advised. 

Make sure your greyhound eats at the same time every day and that the servings are carefully measured out based on the optimum weight for their breed and size.

Visit Your Veterinarian

While it may appear excessive, annual, or twice-yearly wellness examinations with your primary care veterinarian can help keep your dog healthier for their lives.

Your veterinarian will be able to inspect your dog on a regular basis for early indications of sickness before they become serious, as well as keep track of his weight and overall health.

If your greyhound is on a weight-loss program, schedule follow-up consultations with your veterinarian so that your dog’s progress may be tracked, and nutritional modifications can be made if necessary.

Treat Management

We like to spoil our dogs, whether it’s as a reward for outstanding training or as an after-dinner dessert.

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There’s nothing wrong with offering your greyhound treats as long as they’re part of a healthy diet and don’t lead to weight gain. Ingesting too much also causes poor skin, teeth decay, excessive cholesterol and blood pressure, and mood swings in greyhounds. With any dog breed, moderation is crucial when it comes to treats. Many store-bought snacks, particularly biscuits, are also high in fat. 

Final Thoughts

Obesity is a common problem in all dog breeds, and it will shorten your greyhound’s lifetime. A healthy weight for a greyhound should be around 60 pounds. If a greyhound weighs more than 80 pounds, it is considered obese. These are fat rolls, not ribs, and allowing your greyhound to acquire weight puts its health in jeopardy.

Fortunately, there are a variety of options available to assist your overweight greyhound. Obesity in your greyhound can overall be avoided by eating a healthy, balanced diet and engaging in regular physical activity. Making sure you have a good balance of diet and activity can help your greyhound burn off extra fat and maintain a healthy weight.