Bletchley is a national hotspot - for overweight dogs

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Dogs in Bletchley are among the fattest in England, a survey has revealed.

The town’s pampered pooches are sixth most likely to be overweight in the country.

And, overall, they weigh an average 43 per cent more than their target weight, say Pets at Home vets.

The pet retailer analysed more than half a million dogs across England to come up with the fat pet statistics.

The town where dogs were most likely to be fat was Swinton in Yorkshire, while the slimmest dogs came from Consett in County Durham.

Pets at home veterinary advisor Dr Maeve Moorcroft said: “It’s interesting to see that on average Bletchley’s dogs are struggling to maintain their ideal weight.

“One of the things many pet owners struggle with is now spoiling their beloved dog with too many treats and snacks, for example cheese and chocolate, which can be harmful to their health.”

Dr Moorcroft warned that, just as in humans, dogs’ health can suffer from carrying too many extra pounds.

The added weight can cause damage to joints, bones and ligaments, as well as problems with breathing and digestion. It can even affect quality and length of life in extreme cases.

The company, which ironically has a store in Bletchley selling its own brand of dog gy treats, is now offering free “nutritional consultations” for any owners worried their pet is getting porky.

You can book by visiting www.petsathome.com/nutritional consultation.

The Kennel Club admits it is difficult to work out a perfect weight for every dog as breeds naturally come in so many different shapes and sizes.

They say overweight dogs will have a bigger and rounder face, a thick, fatty neck, a reluctance to go for walks or exercise, and easily get out of breath.

“Ribs should be easily felt if you run your hand along your dog’s side, and you should be able to see an obvious waist looking from above.” said a spokesman.