Here's a cool story from an Alabama newspaper that sponsored a fat cat competition, while educating people about, you know, why it's good not to have your cat be fat. Congrats, Kramer. You are pretty groovy.
Over the course of your pet's life, he is going to get sick. You can
feed him perfectly, exercise him appropriately, train him gently,
and...he will still end up in the vet's office. Jeff and Faith and I
were on the road yesterday, and we met Casey, a gorgeous Great Dane.
Casey's owner said that his last Great Dane suffered from heart
disease, and the medication cost a whopping 300 bucks a month...but it
kept the dog going for almost 18 months. That's 18 months of pleasure
with your dog...and over $5,000 out of your pocket.
So...where do you draw the line?
Gina Spadafori comments today on an article in the New York Times
that deals with the high cost of pet health care. Lots of good
information (including a study that reveals that dog owners spend more
on treats than regular old dog food), but the writer makes the fatal
(both to Gina and to me) mistake of concluding "It's only a cat. Or a
dog." Yes. That argument worked very well in talking people out of
their flooded houses in Louisiana and Mississippi last year, when it
became clear that their "only a pet" was going to be left behind.
Gina argues for pet insurance that has a high deductible, and says, sensibly,
There has to be a middle ground between "sorry kitty, I can replace you
for $20" and taking out a second on your home to pay for chemo.
We were really guilty of this, because our dog is a magical blend of
pit, beagle, and Lab, which makes her, even at her healthy weight, a
very curvy dog. One of Faith's fans used to call her "Marilyn Monroe." So, in denial, we let her get...too curvy.
Faith is big-chested and full-hipped...something like her, ahem, female
owner. Maybe this is a new disorder--when you have body image
distortion...for your dog! Anyway, give it a try. And if you don't
have a pet show nearby, when you see a shapely dog (or, less likely, a
cat), ask her owner how much she weighs. People will rarely reveal
their own weight, but pets are a different story.
The article also quotes the fabulous Dr. Andrew Kaplan who is...Faith's vet!