A FAT cat and rotund rabbit are to represent the region in a national pet slimming contest.

Super-sized Bobby the rabbit, from Richmond, North Yorkshire, and Billie, a portly tom cat from Sunderland, have been selected by the People’s Dispensary for Sick Animals (PDSA) to take part in their Pet Fit Club after their expanding girths caused their owners’ concern.

The six-month challenge involves regular weigh-ins, a prescribed low-fat diet and exercise.

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Bobby weighs in at 2.39kg – double her ideal weight.

Owner Becky Mason, 30, said: “I’m already quite careful with her food, making sure she has plenty of hay and very rarely giving her sugary treats such as carrots, although I suspect she pinches some of her companion Huey’s food when I’m not looking.”

The Northern Echo: Rabbit Bobby

Billie’s owners, Vilma and Ron Warren, of Eden Vale, Sunderland, have been exercising Billie by walking him around the street.

Mrs Warren said: “Billie is a lovely old gentleman who would eat all the time if I let him. His favourite meal is white fish, but even when he’s just had his meal, he looks for more and it has been hard to deny him.”

The pets will compete with 17 other animals nationwide in a battle of the bulge.

To sponsor the pets and raise funds for the charity, go to pdsa.org.uk/petfitclub