Today is National Pet Obesity Awareness Day, a time when the attention of pet lovers is turned to the ever-expanding waistlines of their pets. With the number of overweight and obese pets on the rise, this weighty issue is one that, for the health and well-being of dogs, demands attention.
Coinciding with this week’s awareness day is Saturday’s national debut of Dieting with my Dog, a memoir by Peggy Frezon. This story of two full figures and unconditional love takes an honest and often humorous look at the journey of an overweight woman and her chubby spaniel as they struggle to lose weight and get fit together.
When the vet warned Peggy that her dog Kelly’s excess weight put her pet at increased risk of diabetes, bone and joint problems, heart disease, Peggy realized that she’d heard those words before…from her own doctor. “I realized that my unhealthy lifestyle was affecting my dog. I ate junk food, she ate junk food. I didn’t exercise, she didn’t exercise.” She vowed that she and her pooch would get in shape together.
Not only did Peggy help Kelly slim down, but Kelly also provided the motivation and encouragement Peggy needed to stay on a diet and get active. “Kelly is now my furry fitness trainer,” Peggy says.
Peggy lost 41 pounds and Kelly lost 6 pounds (15 percent of her body weight), proving that a pet is good for your health. Peggy and her family found Kelly through Petfinder, and adopted her when she was about 1 year old. She is a cocker spaniel/long haired dachshund mix and loves her pink bunny toy, and barking at squirrels. And now, she is also a fitness hound! You can follow their work on Facebook and Twitter @peggyfrezon.