Pet health crisis: Preventative care for pets on the decline
Preventative care for pets could actually save owners money
$5.5 million campaign beginning to raise awareness on preventative care for pets
A different sort of health care crisis is on the rise, Americans are seeking preventative care for pets at a much lower rate, while pets become even more sickly.
The percentage of overweight and obese cats and dogs has risen over the past six to seven years. While 37 percent more dogs are overweight or obese, a shocking 90 percent of cats are now in that category. Obesity and being overweight can lead to complications such as diabetes and arthritis, among others.
Diabetes in dogs has reportedly doubled over the past five years, while arthritis has risen 38 percent in dogs, and 67 percent in cats. The Banfield Pet Hospital’s annual report also shows a rise in thyroid and kidney disease.
Americans may be unaware that their pets are at risk, even though many treat them as one of the family. A survey published in WebMD shows that 62 perrcent of small dog owners allow their dogs to sleep on the bed. The same is true for 32 percent of large dog owners and 62 percent of cat owners.
Why are there so many more instances of disease? Preventative care for pets is not occurring as frequently. Visits to the veterinarian have dropped off by 21 percent for dogs, and 30 percent for cats since 2001.
The preventative care for pets crisis has brought about a new campaign. Partners for Healthy Pets is beginning a new $5.5 million campaign to raise public awareness about the benefits of preventative care for pets.
Michael Cavanaugh, CEO of the American Animal Hospital reportedly states, “It’s really very simple — if we can get people to see veterinarians once or twice a year, pets would be healthier, and living longer, and overall pet owners could actually save money.”