A WOMAN shed two stone after being inspired by her pot-bellied pet's weight loss.

Michèle Dennison said she had ‘written herself off’ to being unhappy about her figure – until her vet advised her that beloved dog Betty was also overweight.

The 50-year-old said: “Everything stems back to that check-up. Betty had broken her foot the year before and, despite our best efforts, had put weight on while she was laid up.

“When the vet told us it was in her long term interest for us to help her loose two kilograms, it was a no brainer – of course we wanted what is best for her long term health and happiness.”

The North Abingdon resident said the vet’s advice to her and husband Merrill Jacobs last April triggered her to reassess her own wellbeing.

She said: “Having struggled with my weight for years, I’d written myself off. I felt very middle-aged, had back and joint pain and could see a future of health issues ahead of me.

“It occurred to me as we left the surgery that if I was prepared to do this to help Betty, why wasn’t I doing it for myself?”

Rescue dog Betty joined Ms Dennison on regular walks around the county and the pair both cut back on overindulgent treats.

Ms Dennison said: “With Betty we cut back on the number and type of treats she was eating, as we hadn’t realised how high in calories some of them were.

“She still gets some really nice ones but we choose carefully, and she also loves raw carrot. She can now sniff out a carrot at a thousand paces.

“What I did for myself wasn’t too dissimilar. I joined a Slimming World group. It helped me to eat healthier versions of the meals my husband and I love while still allowing me the flexibility to have some of the treats.”

Ms Dennison said the transformation reinvigorated her outlook on life and inspired her to set up her own Slimming World group.

She said: “I’ve been blown away by the whole experience. It helped me to get my mojo back and I’d just love the chance to pass some of that magic along.

The human resources consultant lost more than two stone between August and February, dropped a dress size and said she rid herself of the feeling she was ‘treading water’ through life.

She will launch her new group on Wednesday at Abingdon & Witney College’s campus in Wootton Road, imparting weight loss tips and advice including recipes and food plans.

It will run from 7.30pm and continue on a weekly basis every Wednesday. For details call 07483848970 or visit facebook.com/swabingdon.