In a week when the feds cracked down on some of those quick-loss diet companies with hefty fines for making false claims about their untested pills, it seemed just a bit odd that the FDA approved the first diet drug for dogs.
I can’t blame Pfizer Animal Health for going after this huge and growing market with Slentrol. There are about 62 million pet dogs in this country and more than 20 million are considered overweight or obese. I’d bet the very same owners of those 20 million dogs fit into those overweight and obese categories. Might be a good opportunity for Pfizer to cross-sell to the owners.
In a country where dog owners treat their animals as if they were their “babies”, it’s no surprise that their dogs are out-of-control eaters because most owners don’t train or control their dogs at all. Just watch an episode or two of the dog training show “Dog Whisperer” and see host Cesar Millan time and time again have to give owners basic dog training. His show should be mandatory for all new dog buyers...
Millan likes to say that dog owners must be pack leaders to their dogs. You would think the dog obesity problem could be avoided if dog owners exerted some control. The pack leaders should be able to ration the amount of food their dogs eat. They fill the dog bowls each day. It’s that simple.
Dog trainers such as Millan also recommend at least a 45-minute walk for a dog each day. If the human pack leader and his dog did that each day, a lot of the obesity problems in this country—for both humans and dogs—might just melt away. But that is unlikely to happen. So Pfizer’s drug for dogs will likely be a leader.