Is Fido too fat? Pet obesity is growing (surprise!)

Have you become a human Pez dispenser for dog treats? Is your dog's idea of a walk that what occurs in between the sofa and the door to the backyard? Where is Michelle Obama when we need her? Never mind the first lady; why is Bo, the first dog, not chasing his tail over this?

Certainly childhood obesity has become the cause celebre, with good reason. Was there any doubt that concern over pet obesity would be far behind?

According to Bloomberg/Businessweek, Americans spent an astonishing $41 billion on their pets in 2007, nearly half of that on veterinarian services. Little wonder a thriving industry has arisen to help owners combat the battle of Bandit's bulge.

Board-certified veterinary nutritionist Edward Moser, an expert on pet nutrition and obesity who teaches at the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine and serves on a federal USDA panel that is defining standards for organic pet food, says that about a third of all dogs are obese or overweight.