The Porkie MorkieIs your dog overweight?
Dog obesity is a serious problem: it means your Morkie’s life could be shortened by 2.5 to 3 years!
A number of specific hereditary diseases that your Morkie could get, are more likely when your dog is too heavy.
(These are diseases your Morkie could get, since he’s half Yorkie and half Maltese. But it doesn’t mean he will get them… he is just more predisposed).
Both Maltese and Yorkshire Terriers have a potential hereditary defect called Patellar Luxation. The kneecap (or patella), actually slips in and out of place.
This disease is a result of years of selective breeding to produce all the good things we love about the Yorkie. Unfortunately, along the way, some of the negatives stick too.
You can imagine that any extra weight on a leg with a slipping kneecap aggravates the problem.
Maltese dogs are more susceptible to Cushing’s Disease than many other breeds.With this hereditary illness, the adrenal glands produce too much cortisone. The affected dog gains weight, loses hair and pees in the house. Excess weight makes it even worse.
The older the dog, the more prone to diabetes.
Some breeds – like Golden Retrievers – are genetically more susceptible to developing diabetes. But not Yorkies, Morkies or Maltese. Yay!
Overweight dogs develop diabetes more than healthy-weight dogs, but scientists don’t know exactly why. It’s worth keeping your Morkie thinner.
A diet with poor ingredients can lead to an inflamed pancreas, another risk factor in developing canine diabetes.
Minimizing medications, vaccinations and parasite treatments is better for your Morkie’s health. And, a clean immune system can help fight against canine diabetes.
Have a plan
to help your Morkie lose weight
Don’t overdo it and put your Morkie on celery sticks and grapefruit 🙂 A very gradual reduction in dog food, while eliminating snacks, will get best results.
Gradually build up to longer walks. If your Morkie doesn’t walk now, start with 3 or 4 minutes then increase slowly to 20 minutes a day.
Always consult with your Vet
Before making major changes in your Morkie’s diet, check with your Vet. The doctor can check that there’s no other reasons for your dog’s excess weight. Although Vets offer advice on the best dog food, they also sell pet food, so there’s some conflict of interest.
How to tell if your Morkie is overweight
There aren’t any height/weight charts for dogs 🙂 but here’s how you can determine if your Morkie is fat.
Viewed from above, you should be able to see a waist. (This works best when your dog is wet.)
Can you feel his ribs?
There should be a definite “tuck” in the abdomen, between the chest and the tail. A blocky or chunky looking body (when wet), can mean he’s overweight.
“Many pet owners don’t quite understand that their pet is overweight.”
— Kirk Breuninger, Researcher, Banfield Pet Hospital
6 symptoms that your Morkie is overweight
1. Your dog is slow getting up, and resists moving around.
2. He’s wheezy when he walks and seems short-of-breath.
3. Your Morkie is often constipated, and has other digestive difficulties.
4. He can’t scratch himself or reach around to lick himself.
5. He’s not so excited to go for a walk any more.
6. Your Morkie is outside the “typical” weight of around 5 to 8 pounds. He can be bigger, but only if he’s not fat.