I saw an interesting sign on the reader board of a chiropractor’s office which was, in the immortal words of Homer J. Simpson, funny ’cause it’s true.
It read “If your dog is overweight, you are not getting enough exercise.”
This struck home to me last year. I am a runner. In my prime, a few years back, I would do between 9 and 12 miles per day, every day. These days, I average 3-5 miles about 3 to 5 times per week. Not great, but enough to get that endorphine high. About a year and a half ago, I became very busy with work, training clients, work on our new house, etc. All those excuses that life offers so we don’t do the things we like to do, or maybe need to do. I stopped running and working out. Time went by.
Then, one day I took Loki in for his regular blood donation and noticed he had packed on some pounds. Wow, I thought, you really filled out, boy. Maybe we need to cut back on the kibble.
Later, I took a look at myself, and thought the same thing, wow, you’ve really filled out. Time to cut back on the… well, cut back on everything. I had also packed on quite a few pounds and not even noticed.
Since then, I have tried to make time to put in a few miles a few times a week to keep fit and to make sure my jeans don’t get to snug. Moving to the farm has also helped. I mean, really, who needs Cross Fit when you have a shovel, a 10-pound sledge and nearly 100 fence posts that need to go in the ground?
But, I am not alone in my struggle to stay at a healthy weight. We hear all kinds of news stories about America’s obesity epidemic and a trip to Wal-Mart is all it takes to see it in real life. In fact, allowing a dog to become dangerously overweight was just the basis for an animal neglect case for Obie the dachshund here in the Pacific Northwest. But as people have become fatter, out pets are packing on pounds right along side us. This is pointed out in a recent study by Banfield Hospitals.
So do your dog a favor, do yourself a favor, and take a hike, go for a run, or just get up and walk a bit. You’ll both feel better for it.