Is your pet putting on too much weight, especially with all the festive treats and the excuses they make not wanting to exercise? The Pet Fit Club, an animal slimming contest in the UK, has helped many overweight furkids lose the extra flab.
Organised by the People's Dispensary for Sick Animals (PDSA), a UK veterinary charity, the Pet Fit Club has been helping 95 overweight animals get healthy again for the last 10 years, losing a total of 381kg. Many of these pets were previously given human junk food to snack on.
While the competition is light-hearted, there is a serious underlying message to it. Over the last two years, the PDSA has diagnosed many more animals as clinically obese. Being overweight can lead to health problems for animals such as heart disease, cancer, diabetes and arthritis.
Here are some of the noteworthy participants and their transformations following the six month programme that helped them lose fat, as well as teach their paw-rents how to feed their pets more healthily.
Before entering the Pet Fit Club, this Labrador Duke, was morbidly obese being double his ideal weight. Through the programme, he lost 5kg which is 8.3% of his body weight and looks a lot more fit and dashing.
Winning the title of the “Biggest Loser”, Jack went from tipping the scales at 20.5kg to a trimmer 14.1kg, losing a total of 6.4kg. He also cut 20cm off his waist!
Kayla, a Mastiff, used to enjoy and snack on one of the best-loved human junk foods – pizza! Unhealthy for both humans and animals alike, she weighed 61kg at her heaviest but lost 17kg following her Pet Fit Club stint.
Felines were not excluded from the competition as well! Rescue cat Boycus was twice his ideal size even though the other cats in the same household were all of healthy weight (perhaps he ate all of their fish treats). He lost 6.8% of his bodyweight and is now weighing a healthier 9.23kg. He is back to being a healthy black beauty!
Always unsuccessful with the various diets he has tried over the years, Fudge would eat anything apart from lettuce. He used to weigh 58kg before losing much of his flab through the programme. Now, having lost close to 10kg, he stands at 48.8kg.
In light of the upcoming festive season with more feasting, it is important to ensure that we do not go overboard with feeding our furkids, and practice caution especially when it comes to human food. Remember, everything in moderation!
*This article was updated on 19 May 2021. It first appeared in PetsMagazine.com.sg on 18 Dec 2015.