Monday, March 24, 2008

Canine Weight Check

I’m always amazed at the bill when I take my dog Jake in for his yearly check-up. I know veterinarians are by no means the highest paid doctors, but my animal hospital is working hard to close the gap!

As we waited for our turn and Jake checked out every dog that walked by, my eye caught a colorful glossy brochure for “Pawsitively Fit!” This program, which is advertized as a “one-of-a-kind” canine weight management program, is the equivalent of doggy Weight-Watchers! For a mere $100 membership fee, you get:

– Five (5) weigh-ins with a licensed Technician (one each month)
– Access to technician/veterinarian advice on weight-loss
– Monthly goal assessment
– Monthly caloric calculations and
– Monthly Slentrol calculations, if your dog is placed on this medication.

I reaffirmed that I am living in a society with way too much expendable money when programs like this are taking off!

I love my vet. We talked about all the various tests and injections they were suggesting and settled on only those that were really necessary. We decided to put off cleaning his teeth for a while longer, since they are not really too full of tartar and he will need to be sedated (at a considerable expense). He found Jake to be slightly overweight (about 5 pounds) and fortunately did not mention Pawsitively Fit, but instead suggested decreasing the amount of food he gets each day. He did suggest that Jake come in every 6 months now since he is becoming an “older dog.” To me that seems a bit excessive if he shows no sign of being sick!

I paid the bill which was still staggering despite the things I had declined. I feel really fortunate that Jake is a relatively well dog. Except for his seasonal allergies which emerge the same week of August every year and for which he takes steroids for 3 weeks, he has no health problems.

I’ll bet the incidence of canine obesity is on the same curve as human obesity in this country. Next thing you know, they will be offering gym memberships for dogs!

For those of you who haven't met Jake, here he is -- he was too embarrassed to sit on the scales, so that's a stand-in!


Blogger GEWELS said...

I took Simone (the Corgi) in for her vet check this week also and was told that she is also overweight (by how much I don't know).
I have actually been working hard ot get her more exercise ( we run, rather than walk) and have decreased her food. I was thinking that she was looking a bit trimmer until the vet confirmed that she was 5 pounds heavier than her last visit. OY!
Jake will get plenty of doggy exercise during his visit here.

1:31 PM  
Blogger Kristin said...

There's a whole world out there about which I know nothing. Weight watching? For dogs?

2:06 PM  
Blogger Barbara said...

Gewels -- Keep an eye on Simone's food while Jake is around. His last bout of real obesity was when he was stealing Dylan's food. It was only after Dylan was gone that he dropped 15 pounds and became instantly sveldt! That's when the vet got concerned and took him off "diet" food. So now he's inching back up, but we are not going to let him get really fat again!

Kristin -- Unfortunately many dogs, like their owners, have become sedentary. Not so much on the Hill, but here in the 'burbs where we all drive everywhere.

4:03 PM  
Blogger mouse (aka kimy) said...

is that your jake in the picture? if so he is a total cutie!!!

10:08 PM  
Blogger Barbara said...

Mouse -- No, the top shot is not Jake, but I did add his picture at the bottom. I think he's pretty cute, too!

10:27 PM  
Blogger Mother of Invention said...

Jake's a beauty. I love labs and retrievers. Our cats are a little chubby for not having got as much exercise in the snow!!!

A good sign of spring is the clumps of fur I'm combing out of them! I think I read that it is something to do with the light which would make sense since it sure can't totally be the temperature! It's snowing right now and I must go check my mailbox for the couscous!!

3:01 PM  
Blogger mouse (aka kimy) said...

jake is GORGEOUS - he definitely surpasses just being cute! thanks for posting his portrait!

9:20 PM  
Blogger Colette Amelia said...

Jake is indeed a very lovely boy!

9:42 PM  
Blogger Barbara said...

Colette -- And he's as clever as he is cute. He can open gates...

9:50 PM  

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