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Pet obesity named top welfare concern
obese dog
"Obesity is a potential killer for pets and we know more and more practices are seeing overweight animals coming through their doors".

Two-thirds of vets most worried about obese pets - survey
 
Obesity or overfeeding has been named the top welfare concern facing UK pets, in a new survey by the BVA.

In a poll of over 1,600 vets, nearly two-thirds said obesity or overfeeding was their greatest welfare concern. The figures were released to coincide with World Obesity Day.

Pet owners failing to follow or understand pet food feeding guidelines, giving too many treats and snacks and lack of exercise, are all playing a part the rising problem of pet obesity, BVA says.

While owners may feel they are being kind, BVA president Gudrun Ravetz said often it is a case of "killing with kindness" and is contributing to poor health and limited life spans.

"Obesity is a potential killer for pets and we know more and more practices are seeing overweight animals coming through their doors," she added.

Pet owners are urged to seek advice from their local vet on how much to feed and how to recognise a healthy body shape.

BSAVA president Susan Dawson believes vets and pet owners must work together to help keep animals healthy.

"All companion animals deserve a nutritionally balanced diet; in fact it is a requirement of the Animal Welfare Acts.

"Of course it is tempting to give too many treats and easy to forget to weigh food out, but because obesity can cause serious health and welfare problems for companion animals BSAVA strongly recommends that bodyweight and body condition are monitored regularly and diets modified to maintain a healthy weight."

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Wales to ban third party puppy and kitten sales

News Story 1
 The Welsh Government has said it will ban third party sales of puppies and kittens, after a consultation showed overwhelming public support.

A consultation in February received nearly 500 responses, most of whom called for greater action to improve the welfare of cats and dogs at all breeding premises.

Concerns were also raised about online sales, impulse buying, breeder accountability and illegal puppy imports.

A consultation will now be held on plans to implement a ban. Environment minister Lesley Griffiths said she will also revisit the current breeding regulations to improve welfare conditions.  

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WHO declares Congo Ebola outbreak an international health emergency

The World Health Organisation has declared the Ebola outbreak in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) a Public Health Emergency of International Concern.

The move comes after a meeting of the International Health Regulations Emergency Committee for Ebola in the DRC. The committee cited recent developments in the outbreak in making its recommendation, including the first confirmed case in Goma - a city of almost two million people on the border with Rwanda, and the gateway to the rest of DRC and the world.

The committee also reinforced the need to protect the livelihoods of the people most affected by the outbreak by keeping transport routes and borders open.