We know that starting a weight loss diet for your pet can be overwhelming. Here, we share a client’s amazing weight loss success with her own pet. We hope that seeing the difference she made in Jake’s quality of life will inspire you to continue your own journey in creating a healthy and happy lifestyle for your pet.
Jake The Wonder Dog – A Weight Loss Journey
He was the largest of the dachshund puppies, and the only dapple red of the group, so he stood out right away. Wiggly, alert and cute as a button!
I had not owned a dog since I was a child. Even then, I was not in charge of her care. We had cats all of our married life. So I took him home, named him Jake, and fed him like a cat. I kept food in his bowl at all times. He was so smart and learned many “tricks” easily including how to get a treat out of me at any time.
My friends soon began to make remarks about his weight. They said he was a fat sausage dog and a pudgy boy.
When Weight Becomes A Health Concern
One day Jake encountered a snake in the yard. When he recoiled from the snake, he yelped in pain. Dr. Russell’s diagnosis was a dislocated kneecap (luxating patella). While it can be surgically repaired, being overweight put Jake at an increased risk of dislocating it again.
Jake needed to diet to lose 15 pounds! I knew it would be hard for both of us, but I did not want to ever see him suffer through another painful surgery and recovery. I wanted him to act his age, young and playful again.
Let The Diet Begin
The pet nutritionist helped me understand how much food was appropriate and the kind of diet he should eat. She told me to give low calorie treats like carrots and green beans. If I gave him a dog treat, I had to take food out of his daily cup of food to compensate calorically. I divided his food equally into morning and evening portions. Jake was not happy with the change.
All of this food control was hard on me and on Jake. He did all of his “tricks” that usually gained him a treat reward. Without prompting suddenly Jake would ‘sit up pretty’. No treat. Then he would roll over, and over, and over. No treat. It took a long time for him to catch on that begging didn’t ever get a reward.
A Lot Of Hard Work, But So Worth It!
It has been a difficult journey, but I was determined to undo what I had done to him. Jake still needs to lose 3 more pounds, but he is a happier, healthier dog. His friskiness has returned. He no longer is a plodding log of a dog.
Today he looks like the prancing, young fellow that he is. Thank you to the nutritionist and Dr. Russell for giving me the guidance and the tools to help my sweet Jake live a happy, healthy and longer life.