Alan Davies returns for an even bigger and better fourth series of ‘The Dog Rescuers’. Viewers will follow the familiar faces of the RSPCA’s finest, plus some new friends, as they continue their crusade against cruelty and neglect of dogs. The series features dramatic rescues, inspirational rehabilitations and heart-warming rehomings, plus the four-legged heroes who work on our behalf, new ways to bond with man’s best friend, and the life of a rescue pup from birth, through walkies, and all the way to adulthood.

In this episode we meet an overweight whippet who has been spoiled by his elderly owner in Essex. Inspector for Essex Marie Hammerton responds to a call about an overweight whippet called Blue. With the help of a new diet and exercise regime from their vet, Blue must shed some pounds before there are any serious consequences.

Blue the Whippet initially weighed 29kg and for the filming weigh-in for The Dog Rescuers has dropped down to 23.4kg. . In the month following this, he has continued his progress and lost another kilogram.

Blue was fed a simple cup of biscuits a day, and was given strictly no snacks- apart from the occasional carrot. He also went on longer walks, multiple times a day and the whole family got involved in playing with Blue to keep him stretching his legs.

Inspector Marie Hammerton was a prison officer for three years before turning her hand to animals in 2014. Her life has always revolved around animals and she dreamt of being an RSPCA inspector ever since she was a little girl with the hope of being able to rescue animals from desperate situations.

RSPCA dog welfare expert Lisa Richards said: “Recent studies have suggested that around half of all pet dogs are overweight, and this can cause serious health and welfare issues for our dogs such as heart disease and diabetes. Being obese can reduce the length and quality of our dogs’ lives.

The good news is that there are simple steps that owners can take to check that their pets are the right weight and keep them happy and healthy. And it’s always best to seek advice from a vet if you’re not sure if your pet is the right weight, or if you’re concerned that they might be overweight.”

See Blue’s Amazing Transformation From Fat Dog to Healthy Hound

Top ten tips for keeping your dog healthy from the RSPCA

· If you think your dog might be overweight always consult your vet in the first instance.

· As a guide – you should be able to see and feel the outline of your pet’s ribs without excess fat covering.

· You should be able to see and feel your pets waist and it should be clearly visible when viewed from above.

· Your pet’s belly should be tucked up when viewed from the side.

· Get your pet weighed at the vets regularly if you are concerned.

· How much your dog needs to eat depend on their diet, lifestyle and health. Read and follow the feeding instructions on any dog foods that you buy.

· If you want to give your dog treats consider using low fat alternatives instead of shop bought treats try a small amount of cucumber, carrot or small pieces of chicken. Always consult your vet before doing this.

· If you want to give your dog treats for example if you are training them you should incorporate this into their daily food allowance and reduce accordingly.

· You could use playful interaction with your dog or a special toy as a reward instead.

Always make sure your dog is getting plenty of exercise – how much this is depends on the age, health and type of your dog – but they should be going out for a walks at least once per day.

In other stories, in Thornton Heath, South London, Inspector Nick Wheelhouse is called out to see three adult mastiffs and nine puppies who are all drastically underweight. Will Gaza, the mother and the skinniest of the dogs, be able to regain the weight she so desperately needs.

Overweight whippet Blue had been spoiled by his elderly owner in Essex. With the help of a new diet and exercise regime from their vet, Blue must shed some pounds before there are any serious consequences.

Back in January 2015 nine poodles were found by the side of the road near Winchester. Their wet, matted coats accounted for over 2/5 of their body weight. We catch up with Mavis and her new owner Sally Firth as she takes her for a full grooming and pampering treatment at Pooch Dog Spa in Farnborough.

Prince the sharpei was found with barely a hair on his body. Anthony Pulfer checks in on him to see whether with treatment he has started to look more like a dog again.

If you would like nothing better than to give a disadvantaged dog like these a happy home, we have a super staffy for you in our live appeal this week.

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