Why worry if your Morkie is overweight?

Why worry if your Morkie is overweight?

In my last post, Is your Morkie a Porkie, we looked at how and why small dogs become overweight, and what we can do about it.  No surprise it’s the same problem we have — too much energy in and not enough out.  But is a pudgy dog anything to really worry about? Well, yes.. as you’ll see when you read on…

 

Impact of your Morkie being overweight

 

Your Morkie is half Yorkie and half Maltese, and both of these breeds (and all pure breeds) have hereditary diseases that they MIGHT suffer from in their lifetime – it doesn’t mean they WILL get these diseases but they are more likely to than other breeds.  A number of specific hereditary diseases that your Morkie could get, are made much worse by too much weight.

Yorkshire Terriers, and to a lesser degree, Maltese, have a potential hereditary defect called Patellar Luxation – or “floating” kneecaps. The kneecap or patella, actually slips in and out of place. This disease is a result of years of 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 extra weight on that leg aggravates the problem.

Maltese dogs are more susceptible to Cushing’s Disease than many other breeds. This is another hereditary condition and it happens when the normal hormonal feedback loop goes crazy. Too much cortisone is produced by the adrenal glands. It’s more common in older dogs, and can even seem like the aging process itself, because the dog will gain weight, lose hair and pee in the house. Controlling weight of a dog with Cushing’s is more challenging, but it can be done. Your Vet will probably prescribe on-going medication to treat the disease, and can give you advice on managing your Morkie’s weight at the same time.

yorkie eating dogfood on white

Any breed can have these problems being overweight

Besides breed-specific hereditary diseases that are made worse by too much weight, there are more common problems that any breed can suffer. These include:

  • Canine diabetes.
  • Digestive problems including constipation, flatulence and diarrhea. Phew, who needs it!
  • Serious damage to joints, bones, and ligaments are a direct result of too much weight being borne by the joints.
  • Heart disease and high blood pressure.
  • Difficulty breathing – fat pushes on the abdomen wall and there is less room in the for the lungs to fill properly. Overweight dogs often wheeze, unable to take a full, deep breath.
  • Increased chance of cancer – could be another risk to your Morkie who’s overweight. The exact link between obesity and cancer isn’t known for sure, but why risk it!
  • A shorter life – just like people, dogs with all the burdens overweight causes, simply don’t live as long.

In conclusion, keep your Morkie fit and at a healthy weight and she’ll be a happy, lively companion for many years.

 

Wondering “how big will my puppy get?”  Click here.

The Porkie Morkie

The Porkie Morkie

Like their parents, Yorkshire Terriers and Maltese, the Morkie is meant to be a small dog, usually under 10 pounds and most often around 5 or 6 pounds.  Both the parent breeds are small boned and not meant to carry any extra weight.

How can I tell if my Morkie is overweight?

It doesn’t take much – for example, if your Morkie is 7.5 lbs and is meant to be about 5 lbs., she’s 50% overweight!   Here are some ways to tell if your Morkie is a Porkie….

Can you feel his ribs fairly easily – they may have a thin layer of fat on them, but you should be able to feel each one.

Take an overhead view – it’s hard with the Morkie’s coat, but after a bath and before drying, is your Morkie “wasp” shaped or barrel shaped? Healthy-weight dogs should have a definite waist between shoulders and hips.

Now take a side view – again works best if your pup is wet, because of his fluffy coat. There should be what experts call an “abdominal tuck” – that is, the area behind the ribs should go up or be smaller in diameter than the rib area. This won’t be as extreme in the Morkie as in some breeds who are very deep chested (the greyhound for example) but it should be there.

ideal weight dogWhy is my Morkie fat?

  • Too little activity
  • Neutering – a spayed or neutered dog needs fewer calories
  • Age – like us, the Morkie tends to gain some weight as the years add up
  • Too much food, the wrong food and too many treats

Calories from treats can really add up. Your 6 or 7 lb. dogs needs just under 300 calories a day – one medium Milk Bone is 40 calories. Another popular treat, “Bonz” for small and medium dogs is 70 calories, and a couple of your buttered toast crusts, can be anywhere between 40 and 60 calories or more!

Next post: Does it really matter if your Morkie is chubby?

feeding-on-reader-with-priceWant to keep your Morkie as healthy as possible?  Check out – The Complete Guide to Feeding Your Morkie – Everything You Need to Know to Raise a Happy, Healthy Companion. 

This 61 page ebook is packed with facts, and names names when it comes to commercial dog foods.  A review of the big names, newer ‘holistic’ foods, home cooking for your dog and the RAW diet.

You’ll be shocked to see who’s on the Do-Not-Buy list!

For more about this book – just $7.00 to download today, click here.

How much should your Morkie weigh?

How much should your Morkie weigh?

is your yorkie a porkieIf your Morkie is a puppy, you might be wondering how much he’ll weigh when he’s full-grown.  Or, if he’s already an adult, you might wonder if your Morkie weighs too much… or too little.

Since your Morkie is half Maltese dog and half Yorkshire Terrier, it make sense that he’ll be some combination of both breeds. And coincidentally, those two breeds are just about the same size.

“Breed standards” (those qualities that professional breeders and kennel clubs work to establish over years and years) say both Maltese and Yorkshire Terriers should be:

  • roughly between 4 and 8 pounds
  • (1.8 k to 3.6 kilograms)

The preference among professional judges and dog handlers, is a dog 5 to 6 pounds, although those closer to 8 pounds are very acceptable.

What judges and dog professionals in general don’t like however, is a dog that is too small.

Teacup or mini-Morkies are not a good idea

Full grown Yorkies, Morkies and Maltese that are less than 4 pounds have lots of problems right from birth.  These include:

    1. More health problems.  They are more sensitive to potential hazards around the house than ‘full size’ dogs of the same breed. A jump from the couch can break a leg and they can have chronic diarrhea.
    2. A super small dog faces high risks if an operation is needed, even common neutering.
    3. Very small dogs are harder to house train. Their bladders are that much smaller and owners say it takes at least 6 months to potty train a teacup.
    4. Teacups normally need a lot of attention and can’t be left alone for a long period of time. They need food more often – at least 3 or 4 meals a day, and can be very high-strung.
    5. Teacups usually have a much shorter lifespan. Most toy dogs have a life expectancy of 12 to 15 years but a teacup can live as short a life as just 5 or 6 years.

And the number one concern of very small (teacup) dogs is —

sugar

Teacups are prone to Hypoglycemia or low blood sugar shock.

This problem is a temporary one with any toy puppy until it grows to its full size, but with teacups that are under 5 pounds when full-grown — they always at risk of this common yet very serious problem.

Hypoglycemia is caused because the small dog is not able to store enough energy (food) in its tiny digestive system. Any kind of stress can cause a drastic drop in blood sugar levels which can actually be fatal!

 The Morkie who’s more than 8 to 10 pounds

There’s certainly nothing wrong with a larger dog, provided he’s not overweight. How can you tell?

Diagram of dog profile showing ideal weight dog

Diagram of dog profile showing ideal weight dog

  1. Can you feel his ribs easily through a light cover of fat, or are they difficult to feel because of thick fat?
  2. From the side view, is there an abdominal tuck beginning from base of ribs?
  3. Is there thickening at the tail base?
  4. From the overhead view, does she have a marked hourglass shape? (underweight indicator)
  5. Or, from the overhead view, is the back slightly or markedly broadened at the waist? (overweight indicator)
  6. Is your dog slow to rise or move around?
  7. Is she reluctant to exercise, or does she tire easily with activity?
overweight dog profile

Overweight or fat dogs face many health problems.

Besides breed-specific hereditary diseases that are made worse by too much weight, there are common problems that any breed can suffer. These include:

  • Canine diabetes.
  • Digestive problems including constipation, flatulence and diarrhea. Phew, who needs it!
  • Serious damage to joints, bones, and ligaments are a direct result of too much weight being borne by the joints.
  • Heart disease and high blood pressure.
  • Difficulty breathing – fat pushes on the abdomen wall and there is less room in the for the lungs to fill properly. Overweight dogs often wheeze, unable to take a full, deep breath.
  • Increased chance of cancer – could be another risk to your Morkie who’s overweight. The exact link between obesity and cancer isn’t known for sure, but why risk it!

A shorter life – just like people, dogs with all the burdens overweight causes, simply don’t live as long.

In conclusion, keep your Morkie fit and at a healthy weight and she’ll be a happy, lively companion for many years.

feeding-on-reader-with-price

To get your info-packed, 61-page book, The Complete Guide to Feeding Your Morkie, read more about this e-book here, available for instant download for just $7.00

5 Easy Ways to Check Your Morkie’s Health

5 Easy Ways to Check Your Morkie’s Health

Want to know if your Morkie or other 5-ways-to-check-your-dogs-healthsmall dog is healthy?  Here are 5 easy ways to quickly check…

1. Feel his body

  • gently run your hands all over your dog’s body to check for lumps, bumps or cuts
  • any signs of discomfort? Anything your dog is telling you doesn’t feel good?

2. Check his food dish

  • is your dog eating the same amount of food as usual?
  • although animals may eat less in warm weather, any big change is reason to keep a close eye on your pet

3. Walking ok?

  • is your Morkie out of breath after a walk? huffing and puffing? coughing?
  • any signs of limping or painful joints?

4. Track his weight

  • it can be hard to accurately weigh a small dog
  • it’s worth investing in baby scales to keep track of your Morkie’s weight
  • gains or losses can be a good indicator that  something’s not right
  • A good quality digital baby scale like this one, is available from Amazon.com for $59.99

DogNose

Check your Morkie’s nose; it’s a signpost to good health

5. The nose knows

  • check your Morkie’s nose; it should be moist and slightly cool
  • excess discharge or sneezing can be a sign of allergies or illness
  • (did you know you can give your Morkie Benedryl?)

 

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