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Dogs, Owners Encouraged to Drop Pounds Together

Posted: July 12, 2013, 5:20 p.m. EDT

Dogs will shed more than hair in a new weight-loss program designed for both the animals and their owners.

The Banfield Pet Hospital chain is teaming with celebrity trainer Dolvett Quince of NBC-TV’s "The Biggest Loser” on a campaign that goes beyond walking and running.

The workout plan includes the Burpee, shuttle runs and the Plank Fetch, in which pet owners resting their forearms on the ground play fetch with their dog. Other activities are outlined at

 Dolvett Quince
Dolvett Quince and Banfield Pet Hospital unveiled a dual workout plan for dogs and their owners.
Photo by Rene Macura
"Overweight and obesity is weighing heavily on the minds of Americans and is impacting families across the country, including our four-legged friends,” Quince said. "Leading a healthy lifestyle is just as important for our pets as it is for humans.”

Portland, Ore.-based Banfield’s latest State of Pet Health Report found that weight issues have increased by 37 percent in dogs and 90 percent in cats since 2007.

"Just like with humans, restricting a pet’s caloric intake and increasing exercise are the keys to successful weight loss, but it’s not as simple as just reducing serving size,” said Ari Zabell, director of client advocate support at Banfield. "Because pets have specific nutritional needs, it’s important to partner with your veterinarian to develop a comprehensive weight management plan.”

The weight-loss campaign is being rolled out nationwide through a series of public fitness classes for pet owners and dogs. Atlanta will host a class July 20, followed by Minneapolis on July 27. More information is available at


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