The vetrinarian told me to put my dogs on a diet, because they were looking a little overweight. "Reduce their food by a cup, especially during the winter months when they are less active." No wonder my dogs give me the "death" stare at 4pm.
My dogs have been on this "diet" for nine months and there has been no noticeable difference in their weight. I can't see their ribs like I am suppose to in a normal weight dog. Of course, they do get some table scraps - impossible to keep from them when you have two young children daily throwing food on the floor.
My neighbor across the street, an elderly gentleman, who used to own black labs himself, is very partial to my dogs. He whistles them over to give them a pat on their head. We live in a quiet rural neighborhood; hardly any traffic and no fences anywhere. Still, I don't want my dogs running across the street or around the neighborhood to disturb my neighbors. For the most part, my dogs are very good about keeping to their own yard. They arn't left outside to be running around.
However, for the past six months, we have had a problem with our older male lab, Zeus, running across the street whenever he gets the chance. It usually occurs in the evening, just before bed. We put him out for one last "potty" break before the night. I started to suspect something when he would come inside, licking his chops, and having the WORSE DOG BREATH EVER.
I spoke to my husband about it, suspecting he was getting into someone's compost bin. (we have friends whose Bouvier got into a compost bin and almost died). My husband grunted his normal "I don't know... probably ....hmm....what will we do about it?" response. So, over the past few months, I have been the diligent pet owner and have stood watch while my dogs defecated. They are immediately brought back inside.
So, last weekend, my husband was talking to our neighbor and the subject of dogs was brought up. The neighbor laughs and says, "Oh yeah, every evening I put my leftovers in a big bowl on my back porch. Your dogs come over and get a nice treat."
WHAT????!??? That was my response when my husband told me. Our dogs are suppose to be on a diet. I really don't want my dogs eating whatever the heck he has put out there.
"What if it's chicken bones?" I ask. My husband responds with "He had dogs, he wouldn't do that."
My husband laughs. He thinks it is hilarious. It makes for a great story. No wonder our dogs weren't losing any weight. I am not one to be confrontational with the neighbors. If the old guy wants to feed the racoons, coyotes (heaven help us), bunnies, and deer, then he can. I will just have to be more diligent about keeping the dogs in the yard. I will have to stop buying scrapbooking supplies and save money for a huge fence to cover our acre size yard. Or, I suppose invest in some LONG rope. If not that, I'll need to buy more breath mints.