As I laid on the couch minding my own business watching the Oscars the other night, my Dads decided to poke and prod at me.
I was exhausted, so I just laid there and gagged at some of the hideous fashions.
Anyway, it seems that they have decided that not only have they put on a few extra pounds this winter, but apparently so have I.
I could hear them rambling on that my one Dad gives me too many treats.
And my other Dad gives me too much cheese. It’s low carb don’t cha know!
So that’s when I got the bad news that I am now on a diet. Uhhhh!
Funny thing about being a dog, you do not control your overeating. Someone feeds you, so if you are eating too much, it’s not your fault, right??
I may want 5 treats per day, ok 10! But I don’t get them myself.
According to the CDC, approximately 1/3 of the human adult population in the U.S. are obese. OBESE, not overweight. Vets are noticing a corresponding increase in dog obesity as well. Obesity in dogs, as in people, can be associated with diabetes, hypothyroidism, osteoarthritis, cardiopulmonary disease, and hypertension. These things all impact the quality and longevity of an overweight dog’s life.
You might be looking at Bella or Max over there and wondering if they are overweight. A good test to tell is by feeling her/his ribs and looking down to visually assess their waist, or lack of it for that matter. When a dog is at their ideal weight, you can feel the ribs along the side of the chest easily since there is no excessive fat covering them. Also when looking down from above at your dog’s back, you can see a slight hourglass shaped waist after the ribs. In obese dogs, the waist disappears and is either flat or rounded out.
So how much is a girl to eat??
We’re all different because of our ages, activity levels, stages in life(puppy, pregnant, senior), so it can be confusing. I basically look at my food bag to determine my portions of dry food. However, I found this calculator online which is supposed to help, so I tried it. It turned out that for me to come down to my ideal weight, I should be eating 1.8 cups of my food. Sometimes I get 2 cups and sometimes 1 3/4, so I seem ok.
However, one big missing component is TREATS! Treats should not compose more than 3-4% of daily caloric intake. And I have to say since Christmas, it’s been a good time at my house! With the holiday goodies and my monthly BarkBox, I have had a steady flow.
And now that I look at it, if I was eating the right amount of dry food with no room for any treats, I’m obviously overeating.
My goal is to lose about 3 lbs by summer. A gradual weight loss of 1-2% of body weight is considered ideal, so I figure that is doable. I’ll have Dad reduce my kibble slightly and allow for the occasional treat.
Dad read that a treat really should be the size of an pencil eraser, and not one of those big pink ones So if you are trying to curb your treats also, you might want to think of breaking them up before treating.
Of course on top of the nutrition, exercise is always key in planning weight loss. Take into account your dog’s activity level and amp it up a bit. Of course if they are a total couch potato, start out slow. Dad promised me that I will get at least an hour a day for at least 3 days a week, hopefully more like 5 days. I love to walk so I’m in for that!
So really it seems like a no brainer, eat a little less, move a little more. Just get your parents involved and you will be fitting into that bikini by summer!
Here are my Before Shots, I don’t have much to go, but I could use a little toning in the waist and I am hanging a little low behind the ribs
I’ll let you know how my progress is going from time to time, and if you have any ideas or tips for me, please let me know.
Maybe you want to join me!
I’d love to hear from you!