Portly pets vying to be the biggest loser

  • Article by: JEFF STRICKLER , Star Tribune
  • Updated: February 5, 2013 - 9:02 AM
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Calling all pudgy pooches and fat cats. It’s time to get your humans to enter you in “The Biggest Shedder,” a weight-loss contest for overweight pets. It’s a lot like “The Biggest Loser” except it’s not on TV and the prizes are aimed at winners with four feet.

However, the issue — obesity — is just as important for pets as for people. The Association for Pet Obesity Prevention reports that 53 percent of adult dogs and 55 percent of cats are overweight.

Here’s how the contest works: Before Feb. 13, have your humans take you to the veterinarian for an initial weigh-in. If it’s determined that you need to slim down, the vet should set a weight-loss goal that you can reach by mid-June, plus map out a diet.

Every couple of weeks, return to the vet to check your progress, and have your humans log the results online at www.biggestshedder.com. Doing so will make you eligible for drawings (prizes include $75 worth of pet toys).

The last weigh-in must take place by June 14. Pets that have reached their goal weight are entered into a drawing for $1,500 worth of goodies — some of them for you, some for your humans.

After the initial weigh-in, most vets won’t charge to just use their scale, said Kristi Valentini, who is overseeing the contest for Florida-based BluePearl veterinary hospitals. Your humans also should know that the two BluePearl hospitals in the Twin Cities only take referrals, which is why you need to go to your regular vet.

To enter the contest, have your humans go to the Biggest Shedder website — and tell them to quit giving you those fatty snacks. □

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