Grandma keeps Ky's dog Davy. Davy is 13 years old and horrendously obese. He is supposed to weigh about 23lbs or so (still chubby, but not awful) but regularly weighs closer to 33lbs. Keep in mind that 10 lbs for this dog is like 100 human pounds. His skin is stretched so thin to cover all his fat that he is bald in places. His hips are seperating from the strain. His heart is under constant stress. Hmm... he's starting to remind me of my father.
Anyways, while Grandma was in surgery, I had her dog. He was immediately put on a strict diet of no people food and only the limited dog food he is allowed a day. (This amount is brought way down by the fact the other dogs liked to eat his food if he didn't get to it.) In one month, Davy lost 6 lbs. He had energy and joy for life. He chased the dogs and gave kisses and went for walks and climbed up stairs. When it came time to return him to Grandma, I set up rules for her to follow.
- Feed him the amount he is allowed once a day. No more, no less.
- If he doesn't eat said amount, do not put oil or gravy on it to encourage him to clean his plate.
- No people food. No tastes of food you are eating. Despite Davy looking at you with longing and accusation. No licorice, no toast, no cheese puffs. I don't care if he likes it. It's bad for him.
- If he gains weight, he will not be able to walk up the stairs. Thus, if you want to keep him, keep him skinny.
I came home one day to find Grandma tearing two pieces of raisin toast into tiny pieces. I knew she was going for supper in a few minutes, so I asked why she was eating just beforehand. She ducked her head and avoided looking in my eyes. She said she wasn't eating the bread and continued to tear it up. I walked over to her.
"Grandma if you are thinking of feeding that to Davy, think again."
She scooped all the bread into her hands and took it to the garbage like that was her intention all along. It became clear to me, I had to lay down the law.
"Grandma, if you keep feeding him, I will have to take him back." Nothing.
"Grandma. If I catch you feeding him again, I will spank you."
She looked at me for the first time since I had walked in the door. Head up, nose flaring and defiance in her eyes, she said, "It may come to that."