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FDA approves diet drug for dogs

1/5/2007

WASHINGTON — A new potion could make it easier for plump
pups to shed unwanted pounds.

The Food and Drug Administration said Friday it approved a
Pfizer drug designed to help manage the weight of obese dogs.

Pfizer Inc. will market Slentrol, a liquid formula, to owners of
the estimated 5 percent of U.S. dogs that are 20 percent above
their ideal weight.

The FDA says the drug's ``mechanism for producing weight loss is
not completely understood,'' but seems to cause less fat
absorption.

Overweight pets are more likely to develop heart
disease, diabetes and joint problems, according to the government
agency.

According to Slentrol's labeling, a veterinarian must monitor
the monthly weight change of a dog on the drug and adjust the
dosage accordingly.

Shares of Pfizer slipped 8 cents to close at $26.30 on the New
York Stock Exchange.