|Jasmine January 2013|
It wasn't until the age between four and five years of age, when she started filling in. At least that's what we were led to believe. Everybody was marveling at how nicely she was filling in. After all, Rotties are supposed to look beefy, don't they?
Well, we didn't know better then.
And side by side with our 150 pound male rescue, she always looked quite small.
It wasn't until we were desperately trying to find a diagnosis for her episodes, when her weight became significant.
Only then, when considering hypothyroidism as a possible theory which could explain her problems, the vet mentioned her weight for the first time. We haven't heard a word about that before, in spite of our frequent vet visits. She was at about 130 pounds at that time. Only then we became aware that she should not look like that.
And we weren't over-feeding her; in fact, she was a very fussy eater and it was difficult to get her to eat at least something.
As it turned out, Jasmine indeed had low thyroid hormone levels.
She was put on medication and her weight started going down. Quite nicely at first. As we were working our way down the scale, suddenly we hit a plateau. We were feeding her less and less but could barely keep the weight steady. We re-tested the thyroid and her levels, again, have dropped.
Adjusting the meds helped some.
Meanwhile, her health problems had escalated. One cruciate ligament after another. Arthritis all over. IBD ... The IBD was likely there all along; only never got diagnosed. Was it any wonder, between the IBD, hypothyroidism and extra weight, that her joints didn't do so well?
|Jasmine January 2013|
Of course, the restricted exercise, which came with each of the surgeries, was not helping.
Jasmine's weight settled at around 100 pounds. At the teaching hospital they told us they felt she should be at around 90. This seemed completely impossible then, given the hard work we put into keeping her at 100.
What do you know, somehow, we made it.
We got her down to 90 pounds, while not losing muscle mass, and it's been holding there. Jasmine actually looks quite skinny now. And that is even comparing her to her 5 years younger, skinny house mate.
We have learned how important being at optimal body condition is for Jasmine's health.
Not only for her joints, which can use all the help they can get, but for the rest of her body as well.
Did you know, that just by keeping your dog thin, you can extend their lives by up to two years? Did you know, that by keeping your dog thin you're helping to prevent serious diseases, even cancer?
Today, we know what our dogs' bodies SHOULD look like, and why.
But there was a time when we had no clue. That made me wonder, how many of well-meaning pet parents don't have a clue either. Maybe, if we all really understood this, we could end the obesity epidemic. So let's show off our dogs' waistlines!
Who's with me? It's your turn!
Take a photo of your dog's waistline, and share your story about how you're keeping them fit. If you have a blog, blog it. If not, email me and get your dog's photo and story featured on Dawg Business.
Join the Show Off Your Dog's Waistline Campaign.