DALLAS • A morbidly obese Texas dachshund, once dubbed "Fat Vincent" because its belly was so large it hit the ground when it walked, has found its way out of animal shelter care by dropping half of its body weight, on track to becoming healthy enough for a new owner.
The seven-year-old canine with a love for fast food weighed a whopping 17.2kg, with a body mass index (BMI) of over 60 per cent body fat, last September when it was surrendered to a Houston animal shelter after its elderly owner died, according to its foster mother.
The dog's ideal healthy weight is around 7kg.
"Besides terribly high cholesterol and BMI, Vincent's back sloped downwards in the middle and our vet was fearful that one false move would cause his back to break," said Ms Melissa Anderson, who is with K-9 Angels Rescue in Houston.
Now dubbed "Skinny Vinnie", the dog weighs 8kg due to a healthier diet.
It has been swimming with a life jacket in a pool and taking long walks, Ms Anderson said.
Its fast-food craving comes to life, however, every time she goes to a drive-through window of a coffee house chain.
"He hops over to the driver's seat, sticks his head out the window and waits for the order," Ms Anderson said. "He is always disappointed when the coffee arrives, but he never gives up hope."