It’s been a little over a week since Jack moved in, and I think we’re gonna make it! The cats have gone from being utterly terrified of him and hiding whenever he was in the room to only freaking out if he gets within about a foot of them. I call that improvement. Just yesterday, all four of them voluntarily entered and hung out in a room that neither Trey nor I were in. Yes indeed, I think we’re gonna make it.
The day we adopted Jack he weighed 118 lbs. which, for a golden retriever is pretty much morbidly obese. His ideal weight is 75 lbs. He’s got to lose 43 lbs. as soon as possible to ensure he has a healthy long life ahead of him. Since he had heart-worms (twice) as a puppy he hasn’t always been able to exercise, but that day at the vet we got the go ahead to kick his butt into gear since enough time has passed since his heart-worm treatment. We were also incredibly lucky in that the vet gave us a free 6lb. bag, one bag of treats, and two cans of prescription weight-loss dog food. “It’s like Adkin’s for dogs,” she told us. We immediately started integrating it into his old food and are now almost solely on the new food – and he likes it even better!
The day we adopted Jack (Friday a week ago) he couldn’t walk all the way around the block. He got around the 3rd corner and laid down…and after a 5 minute rest made it all the way to our drive way and had to lay down for another 5 minutes before mustering the energy to make it in the front door. Each day he made it a little further, and by Tuesday he made it all the way around the block without stopping once! I’m not gonna lie – that brought tears to my eyes, I was so proud! The following Friday, he walked up the stairs! That’s something we genuinely thought would take months to achieve – and he did it by himself with no prodding from us. And by yesterday, he went up and down the stairs about 10 times.
This morning we dropped him off at the vet for a teeth cleaning and he’s already down a pound. Dogs are just like people when it comes to weight loss – if they lose more than a pound or two a week then it’s not very healthy and it’s not likely to stick.
We are THRILLED with Jack’s progress. We take him for a walk around the block once a day (for now – hoping to increase that soon) and play with him outside for half an hour to an hour each day – he has officially claimed our black tennis ball, the blue one doesn’t do it for him. While he hasn’t quite grasped the concept of “fetch” he’s really good at retrieving a thrown ball and carrying it off to chew on before you wrestle it from his jaws to throw it again.
So, Biggest Loser Canine Edition is in full effect in our household. I’ve gotta say, since Jack came into our home, it certainly hasn’t been dull!