Golden Retriever, Ceili, trying to take of the pounds at fat camp. Photo by Mel Evans/AP
We concerned pet owners already know that there's been practically an epidemic of pet obesity in the U.S. in recent years. In fact, number of overweight or obese dogs, for example, has increased 8%—from 45 % just four years ago to a whopping 53% today. And this article in a recent Washington Post doesn't shy away from telling us the fallout from that trend: Increasing rates of diabetes, joint problems, heart disease and decreased life expectancy for both dogs and cats, just like their human counterparts.
To the rescue, or to cash in on this problem of increasing pet girth, are pet "fat farms", where Fido can go for a week of intense exercise, like treadmill workouts or "Pawlates", "Doga" or even "Barko Polo", an interactive pool game. And the spa-like amenities continue with doggie facials "a cleansing massage that wipes away organic food crumbs and exercise-induced slobber."
If this all sounds a bit much, consider the cost: The Morris Animal Inn in New Jersey, which has been offering three camps a year since 2009, charges $59 a day or $$249 for a five day camp. If you still haven't flinched, make sure to do your research on any facility where you leave your pooch-as in nearly every industry, there are charlatans who according to this article, "compromise safety for quick cash"
We'd love to know whether you'd consider weight loss camp for your dog-please let us know!