It’s common for us to resolve to make changes to better ourselves with the start of a new year. Why not include your pet in your new year’s resolutions for 2014? After all, our pets are a big part of our lives. They share our day-to-day routines, our joys and our sorrows, and often our health issues. According to the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA,) 25-40% of pets are overweight. Obesity contributes to a decreased lifespan, digestive disorders, skin maladies, increased surgical risks, arthritic and joint problems, heart and liver failure, diabetes, heat stroke, and myriad other problems. Obesity is especially dangerous for older pets who already have increased health risks. Lowering you pet's weight is one of the easiest ways to prolong your pet's life and overall health. Weight loss and dietary changes, even after years of obesity, have tremendous health benefits.