Ahead of National Pet Obesity Awareness Day, doctors from Essentials PetCare are helping educate pet owners about the dangers of pet obesity, as well as organizing a 30-day challenge to help pets shed extra pounds

Wednesday, Oct. 9 is National Pet Obesity Awareness Day and veterinarians from Essentials PetCare are encouraging pet owners to learn more about how obesity can impact their pet’s health while hosting a friendly weight-loss competition to help pets get in shape.

Pet owners are encouraged to visit their neighborhood Essentials PetCare clinic from Oct. 9-31 to receive a free initial health consultation with a veterinarian to evaluate their pet’s weight, body condition and diet. Upon completion of the exam, each pet will be enrolled in the company’s 30-day pet fitness challenge with personalized exercise and feeding recommendations. 

After enrolling their pets in the contest, participants can earn points for exercise participation and weight loss. The pet with the highest number of points by November 30th will receive a voucher for the company’s Guardian Complete Package. The package, a value of up to $170, includes a veterinarian exam, vaccines, a heartworm test (for dogs), intestinal parasite test, comprehensive bloodwork and a urine test.

“Veterinarians are the first line of defense in preventing obesity-related health issues, as pet owners are not typically the ones to notice their pet’s gradual increase in weight,” said Travis Wagner, DVM, regional clinical director and Georgia managing veterinarian of Essentials PetCare. “For this reason, we’ve organized this special 30-day pet fitness challenge to motivate pet owners to get their pets healthy.”

According to a 2018 study by the Association for Pet Obesity Prevention, an estimated 55.8 percent of cats in the U.S. are considered to be overweight or obese, putting them at risk for long-term health conditions. Extra weight also creates more stress on the pet’s body, causing slower movement and can lead to a number of life-threatening issues.

“The single most important thing a pet owner can do to help their dog or cat live a long and healthy life is to have their pet maintain an ideal weight and get daily aerobic activity,” said Dr. Ernie Ward, founder of the Association for Pet Obesity Prevention.  “Numerous studies involving pets and humans show that preventing excess weight gain and participating in regular exercise can extend life expectancy, decrease incidence of disease and improve the overall quality of life.”

Conditions caused by excess weight include, respiratory compromise, high blood pressure, diabetes or insulin resistance, liver disease or dysfunction, lowered immune system function, increased risk of developing malignant tumors and more.

Essentials PetCare operates six clinics, with one in Port Richey, Florida, one in Dallas, Georgia and four in the Dallas-Fort Worth area. One contest winner will be selected from each of the three states.

About Essentials PetCare

Established in 2015, Essentials PetCare, LLC is a purpose-driven organization that provides easy access to affordable, high quality preventative and minor illness care for dogs and cats. The company’s mission is to expand veterinary services to more pet-owning families who would otherwise not seek care because of cost. Essentials PetCare believes that no animal should ever suffer or put its family at risk of contracting diseases due to affordability. In addition to caring for pets, the company is focused on the wellbeing of its employees by promoting work-life harmony, including flexible scheduling, comprehensive benefits, and employee stock options. For more information about Essentials PetCare, visit EssentialsPetCare.com, @EssentialsPetCare on Facebook, and @EssentialsPet on Twitter.


Media Contact – James Judge – Judge Public Relations: jpjudge@judgepr.com or 813.279.8335.