Fat and Furry: Atkins for Portly Pets

(Page 2 of 4)

"Our study looked at trends in human weight loss where, in contrast, high-protein diets are used to reduce body weight without severely limiting the number of calories consumed."

The company's new dry dog food, Pedigree Weight Loss, contains 50 percent protein, "the highest protein dry food formula on the market," according to product literature.

After a 12-week program, a hefty hound should drop 10 percent of its body weight and switch to Pedigree Weight Maintenance, a kibble with 27 percent protein.

There are no plans yet for a "Catkins," but cats are said to be naturally high-protein consumers. 2. Pet Makeover Consultants: Just like a canine version of Queer Eye for the Straight Guy, makeover expert Hildi Santo-Tomas of TLC's Trading Spaces is now offering pet owners the same sort of fast, simple and inexpensive tips that made her a legend in home improvement.

Santo-Tomas is now hosting a "pet makeover" contest, worthy of reality TV, sponsored by the Iams pet food company. Just follow the four-week program for diet, exercise and grooming. If your pet shows the most drastic transformation, the two of you could win a spa vacation at the ultra-posh Loews Miami Beach Hotel, a pet-friendly resort, where you and Fido can enjoy side-by-side massages and Jacuzzi baths. 3. Cat-upuncture and Pet Shiatsu: Thanks to a growing breed of pet-friendly hotels, it seems every dog will have its day spa, and so will every cat, but it won't come cheap.

In Fairfax, Va., the Olde Towne Pet Resort, a $7 million state-of-the-art pet spa, offers acupuncture, massage therapy and hydrotherapy, at costs that can easily add up to more than $200 a day.