British pet owners have been warned in a new report from an animal protection society of the dangers of overfeeding their animals with excessive quantities of sugar and fat.
"Feeding your pet full English breakfasts, chocolate, chips, burgers and too much pet food may make you feel like a kind and loving owner," said David Grant, a veterinarian working for the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (RSPCA), "but it could give your pet fatty tumors, diabetes, arthritis, high blood pressure, liver failure, skin problems -- and, even worse, an early death."
Of 143 veterinarians questioned by the RSPCA, 80 percent reported a steep rise in the number of cases of animal obesity they had seen. More than three-quarters of the veterinarians had started special fat clinics to reduce the girth of pets.
One owner in three of 2,300 questioned admitted that their four-legged friend was too fat; for cats the number was above 50 percent.
One man used to feed his dog a breakfast of egg, sausage and bacon until it became so fat it could not move and had to be put down. He was banned for life from keeping animals, the RSPCA said.
"People who let their pets starve are labelled cruel and callous, but what people don't realize is that overfeeding your pet can cause just as much suffering as starving it," Grant said.
"A fat dog may look cute and cuddly, but in reality you are killing it with kindness. An animal only needs to be slightly over its ideal body weight for health problems to begin. If you think your pet is overweight, consult your vet today and show your animal that you really do care about (him or her)." (AFP)
1. Which is NOT a health problem caused by overfeeding?
a. Bad eyesight.
b. Skin problems.
c. Early death.
2. What are veterinarians doing to help animals?
a. Encouraging owners to exercise their pets.
b. Opening special fat clinics.
c. Doing studies about obesity in British pets.
3. How many pet owners said that their dog was too fat?
a. Fifty percent.
4. Health problems in pets ...
a. are only a problem if the animal is very overweight.
b. are always caused by overfeeding.
c. can be reduced by giving animals the right food.