It is always best to start a new year making intentions, rather than resolutions. If we break our resolutions (as we all seem to do after a few weeks or even days), we are left feeling guilty and angry with ourselves. This year, we need to be extra kind to ourselves, and by having intentions rather than resolutions, we can be happy if we achieve these and not berate ourselves if we break them.

The main intention that we all seem to have year after year, is to lose weight and get fitter (yes, these have been mine too, as they are every year!) but this year, it is more important than ever that we consider our overall health and immunity and work on wellbeing rather than what the scales say.

The same has to happen for our pets.

Overweight vegan pomeranian called Simba

With lockdown 3, it is more important than ever to limit our contact with others, and having to make a visit to your vet as you are concerned about the lameness in your dog after she jumped on the sofa (carrying that extra weight from an over indulgent christmas as we all have had), is one that we have to avoid!

Keeping our dogs and ourselves as healthy as possible with a high nutrient immune-boosting plant-based diet is achievable and not only that – extremely enjoyable! But, we need to limit the amount of food that we are feeding.

We have chosen to share dear little Simba’s weight loss story and the advice given as it may echo your own experience –

Dear Vegan Vet I am having a few issues with my pomeranians weight we currently can’t feel his backbone. I just wanted to enquire if you had any weight loss tips ? Any advice would be much appreciated. He is 3 years old and neutered. He eats Green Crunch kibble which he absolutely loves the taste of we only switched over about 2 months ago from Veggie Dog kibble. He is not the most active boy at home however he walks for about 45 mins everyday.

My reply –

Thank you for your query and yes, I can give some advice to help your little pomeranian. It seems that the change of food to Green Crunch may be the cause? I imagine that you are like me, and so happy to find a diet that your little dog loves, so you have been feeding probably a bit more than you should?
Green Crunch is particularly palatable and we all love to see our dogs eating and enjoying their food:)
I imagine too that he may be receiving extra treats with the winter, christmas and stress of lockdown? He is so tiny so even a bit of potato that you may not have eaten, or odd bit of pasta, or even his bought treats and dental chews are all the equivalent of us eating 1/2 a packet of digestive biscuits as he is so small.
Try using the Green Crunch as his treats. Weigh out the amount he needs each day and give them as treats when he would normally expect a treat. Make a game out of feeding him – hide the food and use activity mats or snuffle blankets.
Arielle (Vegan Vet)
Good Afternoon Arielle,

Thank you so much for the advice. It really does mean a lot to me as I understand how important it is for my pom to lose weight and we have been struggling for a little while. You are definitely correct in thinking that Simba loves his Green Crunch more than anything and I didn’t realise until you stated how much we were just giving it to him in his bowl. Over lockdown and christmas he has definitely been receiving more treats especially when everyone is at home it’s hard to keep track of who’s giving him food.

I had no idea that such a little amount of food would equate to so much for him. We will definitely start measuring out his food and it as treats and I am just going to order a snuffle mat to provide him with that extra bit of mental stimulation while he is eating.

He is a very cheeky little lad who loves to rule the house with his overwhelming cuteness. Thank you again for the advice.

just be kind vegan dogs
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