Small black dog waiting for food

Weight Management for Pets

In recent years, we’ve seen an increase in overweight dogs, cats and other pets. Did you know that here in Canada and the U.S., almost 50% of dogs are overweight? As pet owners ourselves, we realize it may be difficult to notice a slow and gradual increase in weight. As our winters are not pleasant in Nova Scotia, it is tempting to stop exercise or slow activity during the winter months. Normally, we end up putting on a little layer of winter weight. We may consider this to be harmless, but being overweight can actually shorten your pet’s lifespan and cause arthritis and other health conditions. Fortunately, there are many steps that you can take to help your furry friend reach a healthier weight. Simply call us to learn more about our weight management services here at AMC.

How can I tell if my pet is overweight or obese?

With our furry friends, it is a lot more difficult to tell if they are overweight or underweight. This is because some breeds or species are naturally thin or gaunt-looking (e.g. greyhounds, salukis and whippets). A good rule of thumb is that you should always be able to feel the bottom or lower ribs of your pet. There should also be a clear definition between your pet’s waist and hips. If you cannot do any of these two things, it may be time to ask your veterinarian if your pet is at a healthy weight. As well, decreased activity levels and heavy panting are all signs of an overweight pet.

Is it bad for pets to be overweight, even by just a little?

Unfortunately, yes. Here at AMC, we are pet owners just like you and we love to spoil our pets as well with treats and the yummiest food. But, it’s important to remember that over time, being overweight can have many negative effects on your pet’s health such as shorter life span, cancer, osteoarthritis, diabetes, heart disease and more.

Last updated: December 21, 2021

Dear Clients,

For the safety of our staff and clients, we have implemented a “Closed Door Policy” which means our clinic doors are no longer open to the public.Here is what that means for you:

  • We ask that on arrival for your appointment you call us (902)564-8356 Sydney and let us know you are in the parking lot
  • A member of our team will then take a history on your pet by phone, they will then meet you at our front door to take your pet inside while you return to your car
  • Your veterinarian will perform an examination of your pet and then call you with exam findings and any suggested treatment plans
  • Any necessary medications will be prepared in the clinic for you, and will be sent with your pet when we are ready to send them home
  • Payments for appointments can be taken over the phone or by payment at the door
  • All food and drug orders are still required to be called in beforehand and prepaid over the phone
  • All future updates will be posted on social media as our situation with COVID-19 in our province is constantly changing
  • We also request that clients refrain from using our emergency line for anything other than true emergencies

    If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to give us a call at (902) 564-8356 Sydney. With the implementation of this closed door policy, it is a longer process so we ask for your patience and co-operation during this time

    Please note the phone lines may be busier, but we will get to you as soon as we can. We have zero tolerance for verbal abuse.

    Again, we thank you for your patience and co-operation during this trying time.


    We are OPEN with the following hours:

    AMC – Sydney

    Monday – Friday: 8:00 am – 7:00 pm
    Saturday: 8:00 am – 4:00 pm
    Sunday: Closed

    AMC – Reserve Mines (Temporarily Closed)

    Monday – Friday: 8:00 am – 5:00 pm
    Saturday & Sunday: Closed


    Have you welcomed a new furry family member to your home? We’d love to meet them! Visit our Must Know New Pet Owner Information page for useful resources and helpful recommendations for new pet owners.

    Thank you for your patience and understanding and we look forward to seeing you and your furry family members again!

    - Your dedicated team at Animal Medical Centre