While a fat dog might sound like a cute thing, Pearl the lazy Jack Russell terrier mix weighed as much as a dishwasher. And because she was able to shed more than half of her weight, she has inspired human dieters at Weight Watchers.
The dog at one point weighed more than 80 pounds. While these dogs usually top the scales at 15-20 pounds, Pearl was being dragged on a bedsheet to get moved around the house.
After her former owners fed her and prevented her from exercising, she ballooned to a whopping 80lbs. Then they abandoned her in a parking lot on Kensington Driver, Augusta. She was picked up by animal rescue and her life has never been the same since…
Because she was morbidly obese, Pearl was put on a strict diet and exercise regimen.
When she was first brought in, vets said she was so unhealthy, vets said her heart could have quit working at any instant.
Fortunately, 48-year-old Hayley Zielinski, who runs The Dog Networking Agents, described Pearl as having the “saddest eyes I’d ever seen” when she was morbidly obese.
“The dog was absolutely morbidly obese, she couldn’t walk or move her head as her neck was enormous, she even had to be wheeled into the vets,” she said. “No one had seen such a morbidly obese dog that was still alive and vets told us that her heart could stop at any moment. At times, we didn’t think she was going to make it, we feared she was going to have a heart attack. Dogs like Pearl would normally be euthanized in the shape she was.”
But a team of vets and trainers refused to give up on the abused Pearl. They got to work and got her set up on strict daily exercise routine and diet.
She slowly shed one pound per month. But because she was in such terrible shape, she suffered dangerous complications including pneumonia.
Now Pearl has slimmed down to 44 pounds and has become a celebrity among dieters in Augusta.
Zielinski said, “I’m really proud of her. She went from being trapped in her own body and scared of the outside world to confident, plus she can even jog every now and again. Sadly, there were no medical reasons for her being overweight, she had been fed to near death, literally someone feeding her into an oblivion. Every vet said they were amazed she was still alive and that they had never seen such an overweight dog.”
Because she has lost so much weight, Pearl is now capable of going on walks. She has also undergone skin reduction surgery to help her lose that extra weight hanging on her body.
But at heart, Pearl is a “lazy dog,” Zielinski joked, adding, “She’s a real character, she’s hilarious and very lazy. I will take her for a walk and after a while, she will just drop on the floor and refuses to move. People point when they see her and say ‘Oh my god, that’s Pearl’, she’s very popular in our community. Everybody loves her and she’s inspiring a lot of people to lose weight themselves.”
Watch Pearl wag her tail as she walks in the video below!
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