Dr. Donna Spector is Halo’s veterinary advisor and she is also my co-host on our internet radio show THE EXPERT VET on the Radio Pet Lady Network, where we’ve been having a good time choosing candidates for our Halo Healthy Weight Challenge. We knew that when the Healthy Weight food was combined with regular exercise and strict calorie-counting, that many dogs would be able to shed those unwanted pounds!
Our first contestant was Fritz, a lovely young rescued dog from the South. He received a three-month supply of Halo Spot’s Stew canned food along with the Healthy Weight kibble, and his people agreed to document every single thing he ate during a day, including treats and human leftovers.
Then they followed a detailed feeding plan from Dr. Donna, which was a total-calorie approach (i.e., treats and table scraps count, too!) and included chunks of steamed zucchini when Fritz got “the munchies.” As proven by his weekly weigh-in at his vet’s office, Fritz dropped weight slowly but surely.
We have just chosen a second candidate for the Healthy Weight Challenge, a beautiful purebred Siberian Husky from California named Faith. I look forward to hearing how Dr. Donna’s calorie calculations and encouragement – along with the reduced calories and hunger satisfaction of the Halo Healthy Weight food – works to get Faith back down to her two-year-old weight. [By the way, anyone who has an overweight dog and wants to be considered as part of our mission to slim down America's dogs, please write me to RadioPetLady@gmail.com and describe your dog's weight issue.]
But for those of you who are shy and don’t want the world to know that you let your dog “get her blimp on,” you can do the “Cliff’s Notes” version of our weight challenge just by switching to the Healthy Weight food and going it on your own. Here’s a doggy weight-loss story that confirms my confidence that even without sophisticated calorie calculations and very much effort on the owner’s part, this food can help achieve weight loss (but don’t forget to keep up the daily exercise and smack your own hand when you try to dole out too many treats!).
My friend Bob has a middle-aged black Lab named Maverick who is his good buddy and his sidekick, goes everywhere with him, they are inseparable. Bob is a fitness buff and goes to the gym every day, eats healthy foods and watches his weight like a hawk.
But he admitted to me that he had allowed Maverick to get beefy – and he knew that obesity was a serious health risk for his best friend, and could shorten his life by as much as two years. Other than sharing his egg-white sandwich with Maverick every morning, the dog ate only an adult lamb dry food twice a day, nothing else. Bob had listened to “The Expert Vet” show and heard Dr. Donna and me talking on the air about the Halo Healthy Weight challenge. However, he told me that even though he could never get organized enough to weigh the dog at the vet every week, that he really wanted to take the challenge.
I told Bob he could strike out on his own by substituting the Halo food for his own kibble over 3 days (to avoid digestive stomach upset) – substituting a quarter, a half and then three-quarters of his old food for the new one each day. All Bob would have to do was weigh Maverick before beginning the Healthy Weight food, and then again four to six weeks later. I was as thrilled as Bob was to find Maverick had lost over eight pounds in five weeks and was really enjoying the food, too! The wonderful discovery for me was that if you don’t have the patience to wait or the time to embark on the Weight Challenge our way, then you can do it your own way, and see this food help bring back your dog’s youthful waistline as part of an overall exercise and calorie control plan! [And if you try it and want to share your results with me, I'll shout it to the rooftops!]
Tracie Hotchner is the author of THE DOG BIBLE: Everything Your Dog Wants You to Know and THE CAT BIBLE: Everything Your Cat Expects You to Know. She is also a renowned pet radio host and producer, having spent 7 years on the Martha Stewart Channel of Sirius/XM with CAT CHAT® and even longer with her award-winning NPR radio show DOG TALK® (and Kitties, Too!) that continues to broadcast in the Hamptons and the Berkshires. Her most recent accomplishment is the pet talk radio network she has created on the Internet called The Radio Pet Lady Network.