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Dog loses 25+ pounds with water therapy

MISSOULA, MT – A dog’s new year’s resolution in 2019 to lose weight has really paid off.

The pup lost 25 pounds in the past year and has a new “leash” on life.

Watching Pearl run, you would never guess that just last year she could barely walk.

“She weighed 50 pounds. She was unable to walk more than 4 to 5 steps before her legs would give out. she had a dislocated hip that prevented her that prevented her from being able to walk well," said Jessie MaClay, who works at the Humane Society of Western Montana.

When she first saw Pearl, she thought she knew how to help. So, she brought Pearl to Montana Water Dogs to try out water therapy.

“Her first swimming lesson she swam for a minute and 45 seconds so not very long many breaks in between she swam for 10 seconds at a time then take a break then she would swim a few more seconds and then she was exhausted. She couldn’t stand, she couldn’t walk for the rest of the day," said MaClay.

After 54 sessions, six days a week, Pearl built up her endurance and was able to swim for up to 15 minutes.

“In the time that we were swimming she lost easily 20 to 25 pounds," said MaClay.

After dropping those first few pounds, Pearl’s true personality began to shine through.

“She is amazing, she runs she swims she plays with other dogs she has the biggest personality that I never ever would have ever expected when I first met her," said MaClay.

But shes not out of the dog house yet. Pearl has Cushing’s disease and in order to keep the weight off -- she needs to follow a strict diet.

But that doesn’t mean she can’t enjoy a treat every now and again.

“We finally said, ‘Can she have anything?’ and the vet said she could have green beans and it took a long time to convince her that green beans are good, and she loves them!," said MaClay.