Does your dog need Yoga?

At Happy K-9 in Murrells Inlet, dogs can get a workout that includes balancing on yoga balls, time on a treadmill, and running a dog agility course.

"We're getting better and better aware of our own fitness but we really need to include our dogs in that," Owner Melissa Ellis said.

The pet fitness component has been open since September 1, and it's part of mental and physical stimulation for pets.

"There's many different options for owners out there, based on what their goals are and what their limitations are," Ellisa said.

This week the story of Obie, a 77 pound, obese dachshund has gone viral. Obie's story should bring awareness, Purina weight consultant Cathy Tucker said.

"54 to 52 percent of dogs and cats in America are overweight. Which is a lot. You see the pictures of the dog that looks so round and it looks cute, they should have curves, they should have angles," Tucker said.

The Association for Pet Obesity Prevention says about 41 million dogs and 47 million cats are overweight or obese.

Tucker says another way to think of it is a cocker spaniel that is 7 pounds overweigh


is equivalent to a human being 42 pounds overweight.

"They're going to be spending money in bloodwork, they're going to pay money when their dog gets diagnosed with diabetes," Tucker says.

Ellis, who also does the dog training at Happy K-9 says you don't necessarily have to run out and pop your pup on a treadmill.

"There's treats like kong toys and puzzle, treat dispensing toys. Try giving them their meals in that. Try playing hide and seek with food or your dog's favorite toy."

Above all, Ellis says they have one rule that is the most important for training pets or getting them to loose weight


"Be nice to your pet" is painted on the wall for all to see.