Monday, December 14, 2009

A Chubby Dog's New Year's Resolution

The number one new year's resolution that most humans make is to lose weight.  Last year at this time my owners were doing a special diet program, and both lost weight, and when they stopped the program, the weight started coming back on, which seems to be the way it goes. 

Dogs like me gain more weight than we should, too.  How do you know if your dog is overweight?  Here's a couple of general guidelines:

  • When you pass your hands gently down our sides where the ribs are, you should be able to feel them, but shouldn't necessarily, depending upon the breed, be able to see them...that means we are starving.  We should have a thin healthy layer of fat over our ribs.

  • Our belly area, which is the tail-end 1/2 or so of our body, beyond/below the ribcage, should not bulge out on the sides, our bodies should narrow out in that area. 

My owner and I are making a resolution before New Years, and that is to get outside and walk more...she used to take me out when the weather was warmer, but we tend to get lazy when it gets colder.  I can't walk as far as she does, so first we go out for my short walk, then she goes for her longer walk.   Walking is really the best exercise we can get, especially if you live in an area where your dog doesn't have free run of a yard or large piece of property.

For some dogs, you may not be able to leave food down all day...some dogs you can and they will only take from it when they are hungry, others will eat all that they are given.  If your dog is the later, then give the dog a couple of meals a day...most packages of dog food have instructions on how much to give by weight.

Of course, always leave water for your dog available 24 hours a day.

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