Many pet parents show their pets love by showering them with food, treats, and love. However, this can sometimes lead to an unfortunate consequence. Pets living unhealthy lifestyles can result in obesity. Obesity is presenting a challenge for the health of pets, and for retailers.
Cats and dogs are considered obese or overweight when they reach 10-20% over their recommended body weight. Over 60% of cats and 56% of dogs in the United States are overweight or obese. Pet obesity can lead to health problems such as joint pain, respiratory difficulties, and an increased risk of diabetes or heart disease. According to the Association for Pet Obesity Prevention or APOP, obese pets even have a higher risk of early death. With all this in mind, it would make sense that pet obesity can lead to increased veterinary care costs, thus putting a strain on pet owners’ wallets.
Retailers’ Role in the Fight Against Pet Obesity
As a retailer, you may feel like there is little you can do when it comes to the prevention of pet obesity, but retailers have an important role to play. Highlighting healthy food options in your stores is going to be beneficial to not only pets, but to your profits. Many pet owners, particularly the millennial generation, are willing to pay more for better quality food for their pets and take their health very seriously. By showing off high quality food and weight management formulas in your store, you are showing pet owners that you care about the health of their pets and encouraging healthy habits. There are also pet foods that are recommended for diabetes and other food sensitives you can display.
Another option would be to highlight products in your store that promote a healthy lifestyle. Some things to consider would be toys that promote activity, like balls, frisbees, and leashes. A leading cause for pet obesity is inactivity, so this is a great way to encourage and promote exercise. This will encourage both pets and their owners to be active and engage in play together, which is great for both mental and physical health.
Pet Foods to Promote Wellness in Your Store
- Purina Pro Plan Shredded Blend Weight Management Formula: This palatable formula features less fat than other Purina Pro Plan formulas while keeping the same level of palatability. This food has optimized nutrition to help pets maintain their muscle mass throughout weight loss.
- Natural Balance Fat Dogs Low Calorie: Specifically formulated for overweight dogs, Fat Dogs is designed to keep pets nutritionally balanced with fewer calories. A special blend of protein and fiber is used to help pets feel satiated.
- Petcurean GO! Solutions Weight Management and Joint Care for Cats: Cats will love the taste of this food just as much as their health will. This formula contains lean protein and L-carnitine to act as a fat burner, along with chondroitin to support healthy joints.
- Blue Buffalo Life Protection Formula Healthy Weight: Containing real meat first, garden veggies, and whole grains, pets will get all the nutrition they need along with a delicious flavor. Blue Buffalo diets also include their exclusive Lifesource Bits®, formulated by holistic veterinarians and animal nutritionists. They contain a blend of antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals to support a pet’s immune system.
- Canidae All Life Stages Less Active Dry Food: This food keeps the needs of those less active senior and adult dogs in mind. This food is made with high-quality ingredients and lower fat, along with probiotics and omegas, to aid digestion along with skin and coat.