When a pet develops a weight problem, the first thing vets usually recommend is a diet–reduced food intake. It makes sense, right? A pet needs to consume less calories than he burns during the day in order to lose weight. A restrictive diet can be challenging, though, and we hate to feel like we're depriving our animals. My sister puts it well. She's always wanting to lose a few pounds and says "I sure wish I was a dog so someone would put me on a diet." Exactly. It's hard to do it on our own! Our dogs and cats are lucky in the sense that they can lose weight if we put them on a diet, but they are completely at our mercy. And diets for dogs and cats can be so restrictive. We want them to be happy and feel satisfied.
We've all tried a crash diet, right? We achieved some temporary results, but we felt a bit like the devil was inside us? We were hungry!
Meet Theo. (Awwwww! Isn't he fabulous?) Theo's family put him on a diet, and he wasn't so happy about it. He had achieved some weight loss success with help from his owner, Beth, but he was feeling very deprived.
Beth and her family adopted Theo, an adorable puggle, last July from The Humane Association of Central New York. He was about four years old. Beth recalls "Theo was overweight when we met him at the rescue. But to be honest, I thought he was adorable just the way he was. Theo was 38 pounds when we brought him home!"
The vet thought Theo's ideal weight would be about 30 pounds.
As soon as they brought Theo home, it became obvious that his previous owners had fed him table scraps. Knowing Theo could stand to lose a few pounds, Beth and her family did not follow suit. They reduced his food intake and increased his activity level. "Theo started losing weight, and I thought we were well on our way to a healthier dog," Beth reflected. By Christmas, Theo had lost a fair amount of weight, but by January, his family started to notice that he seemed hungry all the time and they saw a change in his behavior.
Theo figured out how to work the foot pedal on the garbage can and started helping himself to anything he could reach. If someone dropped food, Theo was aggressive about claiming it. He tried to steal treats and food from the other dogs. In short, he was miserable and so was I. So I gave up his diet to help get back the pleasant dog I adopted. –Beth
Soon after making this decision, Beth discovered Hill's® Prescription Diet® Metabolic Advanced Weight Solution, a food that activates a pet's metabolism to regulate appetite and burn fat. It does not require depriving or restricting your pet. Beth hoped that this would be the answer to Theo's hunger issue, yet allow him to continue to lose weight because, she said "being so hungry brought out a side of Theo that I wasn't really comfortable with." When Theo began the Hill's® program, he weighed 32.4 pounds. Though he seemed to get around okay and accomplish all he loved to do–best of all playing with the kids–the veterinarian recommended that to be at his best, Theo would need to lose a few more pounds.
After feeding Theo the Hill's® Prescription Diet® Metabolic Advanced Weight Solution for nearly four months, Beth reports that it seems to be working well. Theo has lost a bit more than a pound, and considering that he's so close to ideal weight, now, that's pretty awesome. Beth says that "the most important part of this system to me is Theo seems to be satisfied during the day. He isn't constantly looking for food or whining for food." And it's really easy. Theo gets a cup of food in the morning and 3/4 of a cup at night, plus a few extra pieces of food along with the Hill's® treats to dole out to him here and there (he's so deserving...just look at those adorable eyes–er–hold that thought...that's how we got into trouble in the first place).
Theo now weighs in at 31 pounds. He's only got an itty-bitty way to go. You can do it, Theo! We know Hill's® will help him achieve his ideal weight. Check out how awesome he looks...he's so happy!
A special thanks to Beth Patterson and her family (and especially to darling Theo) for helping me share their story. Well Minded wishes Theo a lifetime of health and happiness. To learn more about Theo's weight loss journey and cheer him along, please visit him on the Daily Dog Tag blog:
More information about Hill's® Prescription Diet® Metabolic Advanced Weight Solution:
If your pet has tried Hill's® Prescription Diet® Metabolic Advanced Weight Solution, Hill's® would love to hear about it and celebrate with you. On their Ratings and Reviews Facebook Page, you can share your stories and celebrate others' success. Join me!
This post is sponsored by Hill's® and the Pet Blogger Network. I am being compensated for helping spread the word about Hill's® Prescription Diet® Metabolic Food, but Well Minded only shares information we feel is relevant to our readers. Hill's Pet Nutrition, Inc. is not responsible for the content of this article.