Pet food low in calories and fats is gaining in popularity on the heels of reports that a growing number of indoor dogs tend to become overweight and face the risk of metabolic syndrome, just like humans.

A survey conducted by the Japan Pet Food Manufacturers Association last year showed that 61.9 percent of households of two or more people with dogs kept their canines indoors. The total figure polled was not provided.

Kao Corp. said a survey it made last March revealed that 87 percent of those questioned gave their dogs snacks. A conspicuous number of dog owners offered food between meals because their pets wanted to eat.