Alison Sweeney Shares Pet Weight Loss Tips

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Feb. 8 2011, Published 12:07 p.m. ET

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Having a pet that is overweight can be worrisome, so Biggest Loser host Alison Sweeney decided to do something about it last fall as soon as she found out her beloved rescue dog Winky was two pounds too heavy.

All it took was a visit to the veterinarian, who suggested she try Hill’s Science Diet Weight Loss System. After one month of following the plan, the Boston terrier was more energetic than ever.

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And, she got her 6-year-old son Ben involved by making it one of his chores to feed Winky the premeasured food and biscuits the plan provides.

“Two pounds in a 20 pound dog is a big percent,” she tells me. “It’s like an adult being 30 pounds overweight. You have to make a change. We saw a change in her joints. It can eventually affect their heart and energy level, so making a change while it still was manageable was an important first step. We saw the results in her behavior right away based on how much more energy she had.”

The system attributes its success to portion control, and adhering to an allotted calorie count.

Of course, living in the Biggest Loser household has perks. Winky gets to hang out with Alison, hubby Dave, son Ben and daughter Megan, 2.

“Winky goes on walks with us, and we play outside with little toys and throwing the tennis ball around,” Alison says. “We include her. It’s making the effort, making the time and making her a part of what we do together as a family.”

Alison Sweeney
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Alison has noticed a huge difference now that Winky is trim again.

“She's an overall a healthier pet. You can see a difference in her body, you can see a difference in her energy level by how active she is and how athletic she is. Since we have a hike I do regularly with her, I can see a difference in how well she manages it. It made a big change.”

We have two cats at home. Mysty (short for Mystery) is the skinny, energetic one … and Spense (short for Suspense) is, well, bigger. Ever since changing her food from regular to “diet,” we’ve noticed she has more energy … and she’s on her way to becoming a svelte supermodel cat. But Mysty is "mini-er" than ever.

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How can owners help one pet slim down but not the other?

“We had one dog that needed to lose weight and one that didn’t,” she says. “Winky eats separately. You have to do a tray for each dog, like you would with your kids or yourself. You have to make that work. And it’s so cute because we did a whole video for Winky on her weight loss journey and it’s on It’s a cute website that showcases her health and her story. Families can put their dog’s family on there, and one family’s going to win … it’s a challenge, one family could win up to a million dollars. It’s a cool website to check out.”

Now Winky will live a long, healthy life.

“What you eat translates into helping you get fit. We were so happy to have her be healthy again.”

Here’s my pic with Alison:

Visit to learn more about Hill’s Science Diet Weight Loss System.


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