Pretty much everywhere we look, we can see the lengths people are willing to go through to get the perfect Instagram pic.
Whether it’s climbing a mountain just to get the best background views or shelling out on fillers to achieve the perfect pout, it’s all for the Gram.
But, recent research has revealed a troubling new trend which sees people bulking up their dogs with protein shakes to make them look better for Instagram.
It sounds pretty unbelievable to most dog owners, but according to pet insurance company More Than, people are feeding their dogs and cats protein bars to make them lose weight and make them ‘more Instagrammable.’
The company found one in 20 dog and cat owners in the UK had given their pet protein supplements. When quizzed on why they’d done it, 40 per cent of those who admitted to supplementing protein said they did so in a bid to help their pets lose weight more quickly.
Around 35 per cent of people said they believed protein shakes and bars would make their pets healthier and 21 per cent reckoned it would increase their stamina.
The study also revealed other dangerous substances given to pets like diet pills and exercise supplements, which More Than says is a bid to make animals look better on social media.
Research also found 35 per cent of dog owners admitted to relying on search engines to diagnose their pet’s illnesses, with half of these giving treatments based on what they’ve read online.
Andrew Moore, the Director of Pet Claims for More Than said in a statement:
Pet owners risk significant harm to their pets by turning to the internet and social media when problems arise.
Giving pets medicines or supplements designed for humans can lead to liver failure and kidney damage among a litany of health complications that arise from seemingly harmless over the counter products.
Ensuring the correct dosing and delivery of pet treatment is essential in ensuring a pet’s health and wellbeing – a simple internet search can bring up confusing, incorrect and contradictory advice that could easily prove fatal to a pet if followed.
This is why we urge pet owners to always seek advice from a veterinary professional if their pet appears unwell, upset or injured.
No Instagram post is worth putting your animals’ health at risk.
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Emma Rosemurgey is an NCTJ trained Journalist at UNILAD. She graduated from the University of Central Lancashire in Preston and started her career in regional newspapers before joining the LADbible Group team in 2017.