In our house, we now have two dogs. That's them that you see in the picture. The Aussie Shepard is Jasper. The Havanese, the little dog, is Rudy. They are both in pretty good health. Except for Jasper, he has a bit of weight problem. Jasper, like a lot of us on the human side of the equation, has been snacking too much and exercising too little during these pandemic times.

A recent study out of Washington State suggested that about one-third of all pets in the United States are now fatter than they need to be. That's right, they've gained weight during the pandemic just as many of us have.

That has prompted some cautious words of advice from the LSU School of Veterinary Medicine about what pet owners need to be mindful of.

They are obviously giving more treats to their pets, so we need to be mindful of that and know that if we want to treat our pets, we need to give appropriate treats and also be mindful of how often.

The words of  LSU Vet School Assistant Professor of Community Practice Nancy Welborn as reported by the Louisiana Radio Network.

Animal weight issues can manifest into health issues just as they do in human beings. Being too fat can create heart problems, breathing problems, arthritic problems, and your furry friend won't look good in a bikini either.

Ms. Welborn suggests you monitor how many treats you're giving your pets while you're sharing more space with them during the pandemic. She also suggests that both of you get a little, okay a lot, more exercise. Just be mindful of how hot it is outside, especially if you're going to be walking your pet on hot pavement.

Trust me, taking the dog for a walk early in the morning or later in the evening is a heck of a lot easier than convincing them to eat a salad. At least, that's the way it is for my two buddies.

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