Pet lock down weight loss transformation

While many of us have struggled to keep the weight off during lockdown, pets have been shedding the pounds, helped by experts at University of Liverpool’s Royal Canin Weight Management Clinic.

The state-of-the-art pet obesity clinic, which is celebrating its 15th birthday this year, has helped almost 500 cats and dogs – from Plymouth to Carlisle – to shed almost two tonnes of their body weight since it opened in 2005!

Oliver (Olly) and his owner Miss Clare Bonthrone and partner. The DSH that is currently 11 year old started at the weight of 9.3kg (2016). He finished the course with a weight of 6kg (2019). This made for an incredible 35% weight loss in total in the 137 weeks (31 months) that he took part in it.

The state-of-the-art pet obesity clinic is based at the University of Liverpool’s Small Animal Teaching Hospital. It is run by world-recognised specialist in companion animal obesity Professor Alex German and Georgia Woods who is one of only two Veterinary Nurses in the UK to hold the Veterinary Technician Speciality in Nutrition. The clinic was the first of its kind in Europe.

Alex German, Royal Canin Professor of Small Animal Medicine said, “Over the last 15 years, we have learnt a lot about obesity in dogs and cats – what causes it, the health problems it brings and how best to manage it. We are delighted at how our insights have helped veterinary professionals to achieve success in managing obesity in the pets that they care for. However, above all we have loved sharing the journeys of the many pets and owners in reaching their goals, and seeing for ourselves the improvements in quality of life that this brings.”

Georgia Woods, Royal Canin Management Clinic Nurse said, “I am delighted to have been part of the Weight Management Clinic’s achievements and to reach these milestones. It has been so rewarding for me to meet so many wonderful owners and to see the transformations and improvements to the quality of life of our patients. Obesity care can be challenging at times, but I have immensely enjoyed helping and guiding pet owners and their pets to success. I am also hugely proud of the education we have been able to provide to other vets and nurses across many countries, sharing our knowledge and helping them improve obesity care in their own practices. I’m very excited to continue the work to improve obesity care strategies and to see what the next years will hold.

Dr Lauren Hayes, Scientific Affairs Manager at Royal Canin said, “The University of Liverpool Weight Management Clinic and Royal Canin have worked together closely over the past 15 years and we are delighted to celebrate in their successes. We are proud to work with world-leading experts in their field who not only improve the health of the patients they see, but also by promoting education and research around obesity and into addressing it to help make a better world for pets. Having helped over 500 patients since the clinic was launched, it is an incredible milestone and we look forward to their continued successes for the future.

Alex and Georgia have helped almost 70 different breeds of dogs to lose weight, but the breeds that are referred to them most often are:

  1. Labrador
  2. Cavalier King Charles Spaniel
  3. Cross breeds
  4. Pug
  5. Golden Retriever
  6. Border Collie
  7. Dachshund
  8. Yorkshire Terrier
  9. Bulldog
  10. Cocker spaniel

Cats and dogs from across the country are referred to the clinic by veterinarians to receive specialist weight management programmes. The clinic is supported by cutting-edge technology such as dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry (DEXA) which very precisely measures the body fat of pets and is used to create tailored individual therapies.

When pets come for a consultation at the clinic they are given a full clinical examination, full blood and biochemical tests. Their body weight and body fat composition is measured and they are given a tailor-made weight loss and exercise programme. Pets attend the clinic for check-ups every one to three weeks during the weight loss programme.

About The Royal Canin Weight Management Clinic

Established in 2005, the clinic is the first specialist weight loss clinic for pets anywhere in the world.  We are the world-leading experts in the field and, therefore, can provide a more comprehensive service than would normally be available through your usual veterinary practice.  We aim to provide an outstanding service to clients and referring veterinary practices alike.

About Royal Canin

The Royal Canin Company, owner of the ROYAL CANIN® brand, is a division of Mars Petcare and a global leader in health nutrition for cats and dogs.

Founded over 50 years ago by a French veterinarian, Dr.Jean Cathary, Royal Canin’s purpose is to make A BETTER WORLD FOR PETS™ by pushing the limits of nutrition and knowledge in partnership with pet professionals and experts.

Royal Canin works closely with pet professionals, such as breeders and veterinarians, not only to design the most precise nutrition for cats and dogs, but also to develop a variety of services, monitoring and diagnostic tools to help understand and care better for them. 

Its unique approach always places cats and dogs’ nutritional requirements at the heart of the innovation process. Their age, lifestyle, size, breed, sensitivities and activity level are studied through science and observation in order to produce diets for each pet’s specific needs. The company accelerates sustainable practices, particularly in terms of responsible sourcing, emission and waste reduction and use of sustainable packaging.

Operating in more than 100 markets, Royal Canin counts approximately 7,800 associates, including 500 veterinarians and nutritionists. It also manages 16 factories and 2 pet centers around the globe and counts with 1 innovation center and 7 laboratories from Mars network. Royal Canin’s nutritional products are available at pet specialty retailers and veterinary practices worldwide. 

To learn more about the Royal Canin company, visit

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