Wiltshire Publications

Weight Management for cats and dogs!

Local veterinary practice, Garston Veterinary Group, has been named by Royal Canin pet foods  as an approved weight management centre as part of a national weight management programme.

All four practices (Frome, Westbury, Warminster and Trowbridge) received ‘Centre of Excellence’ status for their management of overweight or obese cats and dogs and the work they do to educate clients on keeping their pets at a healthy weight throughout life.

To gain approved centre status, the staff were required to establish formal weight management clinics and work as a team to refer clients with overweight pets through the clinic.

All of their vets, nurses and receptionists received bespoke training from Royal Canin’s dedicated weight management team, providing them with the skills and protocols to discuss obesity with clients and encouraging vets, nurses and receptionists to work together to raise awareness of obesity and its prevention in pet cats and dogs.

Louise Brennan from Royal Canin’s weight management team said, “We are delighted to name the Garston Veterinary Group as Royal Canin-approved weight management centres. This is a unique platform for practices across the UK to take advantage of and really excel in addressing weight management issues in practice and tackling prevention.”

As an approved centre, the teams at Garston now discuss body condition scoring with patients to identify whether the pet is in ideal condition. If overweight or obese, they are then referred for further advice and support to their weight management clinic.

The weight clinic is a 30 minute appointment with a weight management nurse, followed by ongoing monitoring, personalised advice and telephone support. They also educate owners about prevention during puppy and kitten vaccinations and at neutering to ensure owners are aware of the health risks of weight gain from the outset.

Nurse manager Sarah Holmes said, “We have all learnt so much from this training programme and we are pleased to be able to give owners the correct advise that they need to get their pet to their ideal bodyweight without starving them.

“Many people try at home to cut back on the amount of food that they feed their pet, which is not always the answer, as quite often we end up with pets that start stealing food and changing personality, just because they are so hungry.

“Our staff are very happy to give help and advice to any owner that wishes to find out more about their pet’s ideal body condition score.”