Owners who were 40 pounds overweight were told to follow a low-fat diet with fruits and veggies. And they put their dogs on a diet too, feeding them only low-calorie dog chow and no table scraps. The owners and their dogs also started an exercise routine of 7 miles of dog walks per week.
After 6 months, the average owner lost 11 pounds. And the pooches lost about 5 which is a pretty high percentage of their overall body weight. Of course, the dogs couldn't cheat the way humans do, by eating lots of high-fat or sugary snacks.
So, what's the best thing about having a dog for an exercise partner? They motivate you. When dogs get into the habit of taking a regular walk, they don't care if you're too tired to go out. They just stand by the front door, begging with those sad, sad eyes, until you get up and go.