There's a saying that pets will eventually come to look like their owners, but that's probably truer now than ever -- especially in girth.
According to a survey from the Association for Pet Obesity Prevention, the nation is being overrun with fat cats and pudgy dogs. As it turns out, more than half of all dogs and cats in the U.S. are either overweight or obese. And just like in humans, this health epidemic is no laughing matter.
"Overweight animals also have certain health issues," says Dr. Susan Nelson, to CBS News. "It can aggravate heart conditions, and it can lead to skin diseases as folds in the pet's skin get bigger."
Worst of all, says Nelson, "it can even shorten their lifespan."
The cause of this portly pet problem? You guessed it -- too many calories and not enough movement.
Nelson recommends that pet-owners pay closer attention to the amount of food their dogs and cats are served each day, noting that treats should not account for more than 10 percent of their food consumption -- no matter how good they've been or how much they might beg. Pets also need to be kept active. Nelson says dogs and cats should get around 20 to 30 minutes of exercise each day.