Obesity in show dogs

Obesity is an important disease with a growing incidence. Because canine obesity is related to several other diseases and decreased life span, it is critical to identify the population at risk. Several risk factors for obesity have been described in the literature. A higher incidence of obesity in certain dog breeds is often suggested.

The aim of this study was to determine whether obesity occurs more often in certain breeds. The second aim was to relate the increased prevalence of obesity in certain breeds to the official standards of that breed. We investigated 1,379 dogs of 128 different breeds by determining their body condition score (BCS). Overall, 18.6% of the show dogs had a BCS >5, and 1.1% of the show dogs had a BCS >7. There were significant differences between breeds, which could be correlated to the breed standards.

Discussions with breeders and judges are warranted to come to different interpretations of the standards to prevent overweight conditions from being the standard of beauty.

Source : R.J. Corbee, 2012. Obesity in show dogs. JAPAN online August 2012. doi: 10.1111/j.1439-0396.2012.01336.x

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