Stanley's journey from paunchy to poochy.

Friday, July 31, 2009

Beatin' the heat: week 6

Stanley had a walk this morning for the first time in a week. We've had record high temps in the northwest, topping out at 103 on Wednesday! We've been working hard to keep cool: tried the wet t-shirts (he hates the wet!), but the big winner has been his cool bed that arrived finally yesterday. Whew!

But Stanley is still shrinking! Here's this week's numbers:

Neck: 21.5 (-.5)
Chest: 38.5 (-.5)
Waist: 34.5 (-1.0)

Down another 2 inches! Maybe I should adopt Stanley's lifestyle...At least he's down some weight during the heat; I can't imagine how he would have handled it 12 lbs ago!

Saturday, July 25, 2009


I wanted to post a before/after pic now that Stanley has hit a milestone. It's really amazing to see the difference in him. I've also posted a pic of him "before" with the collar on (his dad seemed to think that made a different; I still think the change in him is really dramatic!)

Friday, July 24, 2009

Garage sale!

We adopted Stanley from the very good folks at Homeward Pet Adoption. This weekend, they're having a garage sale fundraiser in Bothell, WA.

Under the Big Tent at Country Village.
Proceeds benefit Homeward Pet Adoption Center.

When: Friday and Saturday, July 24 & 25
Time: 10am - 5pm
Where: 23718 Bothell-Everett Highway, Bothell

If you're in the area, stop by and help support this great shelter! Make sure to tell them Stanley says hi!

Help a pup!

I saw this post about this lovely senior Corgi girl over at We wish Stanley could have a sister, but Irvine is a little far from us. We're hoping to get the word out to get her to her forever home!

You can find out more about her at!

staying cool

Stanley is having a tough time staying cool with his made-for-Norway-winters coat and our Los Angeles-like summer. It's been crazy hot in the Northwest and we're looking at 90 this weekend!

Stanley with his "previously frozen" pillow case

We're freezing pillow cases while we anxiously await the arrival of his cool bed. I've been looking for some of those cool bandanas too, but haven't had good luck around here. (it's not usually so hot!) Any other good suggestions for a water-phobic dog?

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Week 5 - Weigh-in!

Stanley is going gang-busters on his weight loss program! This week's weigh-in got us to our first milestone: 110lbs!!

photographic evidence!

neck: 22" (-.5)
chest: 39" (-.5)
waist: 35.5 (-2)!!

His waist is getting tinier and tinier, which is great. But carrying so much weight around his chest/shoulders makes things like stairs more difficult. We got some video of his last chance workout that we'll have up soon.

Stanley is starting to look forward to his weigh-ins -- everyone at the vet is cheering for him and he gets to walk around a different neighborhood. Look at how excited he is to go:

Sunday, July 19, 2009


Stanley has a sister....

Ms. Margot has been with Stanley's mom since 2002, when Petie the big black dog found her and her littermates in the woods. With help from Stanley's Aunt and Gramma, Petie helped raise the 2-day old kittens by breaking up fights and grooming them.

Margot has been skeptical of Stanley's arrival...she's lived with many dogs in her life, but never when she was the only cat. Her reactions seem to range from "he's a fire-breathing dragon!" to "get that galump out of my way!" I'm sure come winter, though, she will find that he's quite a nice furry heat source.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Stanley in action!

Stanley likes to make sure everyone knows who's bed that is....

Thursday, July 16, 2009


We're only doing weigh-ins every other week because it's not easy getting to the vet (and DH and I really want to go together :) )

BUT - we have measurements and photographic evidence! We're out of the 40s! Go Stanley! :)

Neck: 24" (-2)
Chest: 39.5" (-1.5)
Waist: 37.5" (-1)

And, as you can see, his waist is emerging!

traditional top-down view, now with definition!

Stanley has not been feeling very photogenic this week, oddly. I was trying to get some more updated pics this am, but he was having none of that flash!

you can see his bones almost!

When we got him, a friend saw a picture and said "I can't wait to come over and hug his rolls!" I had to break it to her that he was so overweight that snausage was a pretty good nickname. The appearance of some rolls is an improvement!

Overall, things are still moving in the right direction! Stay tuned for some live-action Stanley.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Moosedog Fundraiser!

The very wonderful John Nelson Moosedog Rescue Fund is having a fundraiser right now! Bid on some lovely moosedogs to benefit Moosedog Rescue efforts across the US and Canada:

Ebay Auction can be found here.

Latest Weigh In!

Stanley had his first weigh in since his initial vet check up yesterday morning! Good news!

you can see he's getting narrower!

Weight: 113.5 lbs (-1.8 lbs!)
Neck: 26" (-2)
Chest: 41" (-1)
Waist: 37.5" (-.5)

(of course, his dad INSISTS that the scale is wrong and that he lost more weight...)

don't be fooled by the tongue! even the vet's treats were not up to his standards...

I've been concerned about his belligerent walking behavior in the last week...sitting down and refusing to go further. I don't want to push him to the point that he gets hurt, but his amazing ability to jump up and run home as soon as I give in leaves me suspicious of his sitting-down motives! But last night he did a HUGE walk for him - up to the corner, over two blocks, down the block and home! Our house is on skinny blocks across, but it's a big accomplishment for him!

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Stanley's Shrinking

Last week we didn't have a Stanley weigh-in, but I did re-do his measurements:

Neck: 28" (-2)
Chest: 42" (-1)
Waist: 38" (-2)

Moving in the right direction!

Unfortunately, his walks are starting to slow down. We were going all the way around the block pretty regularly last week, but the last 3 days we've hardly made it to the corner before he sat down and quit....we'll be talking with the vet about this soon. I'm not sure if something's wrong and he's hurting or he's just stubborn and doesn't like to be out of breath! (but I'm definitely leaning towards the latter...)

We'll be doing an official weigh in tomorrow!

Monday, July 6, 2009



Stanley was scheduled for his first visit only 4 days after coming to stay with us. So now we have some good baselines for our big boy.

As of June 24:

Weight: 115.3 lbs (down almost 7 lbs)
Chest: 43"
Waist: 40 "
Neck: 28"

His neck measurement is hard to get because of his coat, but I'm just trying to be consistent so we have markers!
In the meantime, we were trying to get him settled in and find some food.

The shelter had sent him home with Science Diet R/D, but we had heard he was used to a diet that mainly consisted of chicken breast and steamed carrots, so the SD was not quite up to his standards. We tried Innova, Merrick and a lot of other brands before he settled on the Orijen senior food. Consensus from the vet and other owners/trainers/breeders was not to give in - he was almost wearing us down when we found out he'd only eat 1 1/2 cups of food over 4 days - but I'm glad we persisted in finding him a kibble he can live with!

It's not diet food, but because he is so severly overweight, we talked with the vet and agreed 3/4 c food twice day with regular walks should do the trick. We've gradually got him up to around the block about twice a day, and we're already seeing a difference!

Stanley likes rollin' in the yard!

Stanley's Homecoming

After long discussions about adding a new dog to our family, my husband and I had settled on attending the Pawsitive Alliance Designer Mutt Match on June 28, 2009. But Stanley had something else in mind.

I first saw Stanley's pic on the Homeward Pet Rescue on June 19th. We knew he was overweight and older, but after a call to the shelter, my husband and I decided to meet Stanley (then known as Sabor), the next day. Something about him just spoke to both of us, and knowing how rare that could be, we knew we had to meet him.

From the pictures on line, I thought Stanley was maybe 80lbs or so, with a good 30 to lose. When we met him, our adoption counselor gave us the scary news - Stanley was tipping the scales at 122 lbs - about 70 lbs overweight for a Norwegian Elkhound! But we could see that he had a strong spirit and a sweet disposition and he won us over!

Now that Stanley is home, we have some work ahead of us to get our 10 yr old senior dog into shape! That first weekend, I found JNMRF and saw some pictures of other Elkies who had faced similar challenges. The Moosedog List was incredibly helpful in those first few days - it's hard to imagine how things might have gone before the internet! The help and support I've received there was the inspiration for taking Stanley's transformation to the blogosphere - hopefully his story will help others who have (or are considering) adopting a wonderful special needs senior dogs into their lives.

He's a special dog who in two short weeks has already brought so much joy to our family! (Well, the cat's still skeptical, but his lack of interest in chasing/annoying her is definitely helping!)