For those of you who are not already aware, for the last 2½ months I have been on a diet. My parents and my weight loss warden, Dr. Brooks, keep telling me I should not think of it as a diet but rather as a healthier way of eating. I think they forget sometimes that though I display an inordinate amount of brain cells, I am, after all a dog and find that concept disconcerting and unreasonable.
I do remember vaguely back in the day when my family would ask if I’d like a “treat” and then turn around and give me a dog bone. I felt like Hannibal Lector since only he would want to eat the bones of other dogs. (Please don’t tell Mom and Dad because I’m not allowed to watch those kinds of things but when they leave the room, I “accidentally” roll over on the remote and change the channel.)
Dr. Brooks also suggested that I keep a food diary because little items seem to add up so quickly calorie-wise. You’d think with all the examinations he’s given me, he would have noticed I don’t have any thumbs but thank goodness, at least I do have access to a computer. My having to “watch my weight” bothers my Mom and Dad so much more than me because like so many others, they equate love with food. When I go in periodically to get weighed, they always hold their breath and advise me to only stand on one paw.
My much older (counting in dog years) two-legged siblings are actually quite jealous and insist they were never regarded with the same devotion afforded me. They must think that cooking for me daily and serving my water chilled is not an entitlement. The nerve of them to count the number of times I go to the vet and compare it to the number of times they were taken to the pediatrician! Not for publication is also the fact that my Mom carries around pictures of me and none of her children/grandchildren.
Humans aren’t the only ones with weight issues these days. Our companion animals are fighting obesity too, but with proper feeding, exercise and the right food they can lose weight too.
This is the success story of Rubie a medium sized lab/chow mix that had a weight problem. She should weigh between 65 to 70 pounds according to her owner, Shari. In November of 2006 during a vet visit, Rubie stepped on the scale and weighed a whopping 105 pounds.
When Rubie joined Shari’s household she was a four month old stray that had been dumped after Christmas of 1998. There were two other dogs in the household that Shari was free feeding and as that seemed to work for them, she continued doing it for Rubie too. After two moves and adding a few more dogs, Rubie’s weight kept climbing steadily. Shari jokes about catching her older brother feeding Rubie a sandwich and wanting to blame him for Rubie’s weight gain. Every time her brother had a sandwich he felt the need to give Rubie one also. Shari’s heart would break when friends would come over and comment on how heavy Rubie was.
The breaking point came in 2006 after her chart topping 105 pounds. Rubie now had arthritis, and struggled with walking up stairs, standing and just reaching around to clean herself. Shari knew she had to take a hand in Rubie’s weight loss if she wanted to have Rubie around for a while. The vet at the clinic put Rubie on a prescription diet and told Shari that she had to stop free feeding and feed only twice a day. In December of 2006 Rubie was down to 102.6 pounds, but Shari had expected to see better results than she did. The problem
was that Rubie was the only dog on the prescription diet and she would try and bully the other dogs away from their bowls so she could have what they were eating. So Shari had to watch her like a hawk to make sure that didn’t happen. By February of 2007, Rubie was down to 97.8 and then in August she was at 96.6 pounds. However that was only a weight loss of 8.4 pounds and Shari felt that something else had to be done.
So Shari contacted her local pet shop Paw Prints, to have them help her research different foods to see if she could change Rubie’s situation. Shari wanted a food that she could feed all the dogs that would promote good health for all of them and one that they would all like. Shari decided to try feeding CANIDAE Platinum. She was feeling bad about having to cut down Rubie’s ration of food to 1 cup in the morning and 1 cup in the evening, so she added green beans to add fiber and try to fill Rubie up. Rubie loved the green beans and thought she was getting special treatment. According to Shari, Rubie has a lot to say when it is time to be fed.
Shari continued to feed the CANIDAE Platinum and began to notice a difference. Rubie’s weight began to drop, not only that her energy level increased and Shari also noticed that Rubie along with getting healthier was feeling better. Instead of looking like a walking shelf, Rubie now had hips again and her skin and coat improved too.
When Shari took Rubie back to the vet’s office on October 3, 2008 and Rubie got on the scale, she was down to 71 pounds, a weight loss of 34 pounds. Shari and the vet were amazed and very excited. The vet praised Shari and told her that it was her efforts on Rubie’s behalf that made the difference. Rubie was back to the vet for another weigh in on January 17, 2009 and she is now down to 67.2 pounds, which is a total weight loss of 37.8 pounds.
There have been other benefits for Rubie as well. She is now playing with her ball like a soccer player, can climb stairs with ease and running and playing like the puppy she used to be. Shari feels that because of Rubie’s weight loss, Rubie has gained back several years of her life. Not only that, Shari feels that CANIDAE Platinum has helped her other dogs as well. The vet has told Shari that she can now level off Rubie’s food, as her weight is perfect now.
And Shari has a few words for the rest of us, “I just have to say to all of you out there that think you are depriving your family’s pets, because you think you are starving them, GET OVER IT. I did, and it paid off big. We as pet owners really need to take a better look at whet we are feeding our animals and whether we are doing what is in their best interest. Rubie is truly a success story for our family and we wanted to share our story with you.”
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The personal opinions and/or use of trade, firm, corporation or brand names, in this blog is for the information and convenience of the reader. Such use does not constitute an official endorsement or approval by CANIDAE® Natural Pet Food Company of any product or service to the exclusion of others that may be suitable. All opinions in this blog are those of the individual authors and not necessarily of CANIDAE® Natural Pet Food Company.