TWO dieting dogs are in the running to be crowned the biggest weight loser at a national pet slimming competition.
Both Archie and Coco were entered into the Royal Canin Healthy Weight Competition by Anna Wright, the head veterinary nurse at Mimram Veterinary Centre in Welwyn.
The pair have been familiar faces at the slimming clinics run by the Hertfordshire practice to support owners with overweight pets.
Their significant weight loss has put them in the final six for the competition with the winner announced later this month.
Archie, aged 11, was once a podgy pooch who struggled with longer walks. The bichon has shed more than a third of his body weight since starting the clinics.
Anna Wright said: “His owners were unaware just quiet how overweight Archie was, as it never been raised by their previous vets.”
Following a full weight management consultation with the team at Mimram Vets, Archie, who lives with the Wooldridge family in Mill Hill, was put on a new diet and weight management programme.
Anna added: “Archie’s mobility and energy have visibly improved. He has taken a liking to raw carrots as a treat and bangs his food bowl with his paw when he wants to be fed one.
“He goes on longer walks, even walking five miles one weekend, something he had never managed before.”
Coco, a six-year-old chocolate Labrador who lives with his owners in Langley, Hertfordshire, once tipped the scales at 8st 10lb (55kg) – well above his ideal weight – due to too many leftovers and sweet treats.
Now, after a diet programme and care and attention from his owners, Coco has lost more than 10kg and is on course to shed further still.
Anna Wright said: “Coco was the biggest labrador I had ever seen. This weight was putting a lot of pressure on his joints putting him at risk of permanent damage.
“This was a huge challenge for Coco’s owners to undertake as they knew how overweight he was and had tried numerous different ‘low fat’ foods from the pet shops for years, but with little success.
“They knew his weight had got out of control and had previously suffered some verbal abuse from people whilst on a dog walk. With us there was no judgement, just support and encouragement. We all want the same result and thankfully we are seeing a big improvement.”
The winner of the competition will be announced at a special event in Coventry on January 14th 2019.
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