A Boston Terrier's vs. a Standard Poodle's dining philosophy
Sunday, May 05, 2013
A conversation with another Sparker got me thinking about how much I would like to resemble one of my dogs more than the other. I'm not trying to be disrespectful towards one dog, but on the subject of diets and activity level, one is NOT a good role model.
One of the dogs literally would eat until he exploded. We dread having to leave the dogs in a kennel because we have to impress thoroughly upon kennel employees - verbally and in writing - that the dogs MUST be fed separately or one will not eat anything the whole time we are gone and the other will eat until he is sick. Invariably, the employees roll their eyes like we are overreacting ninnies... but do not separate the dogs at mealtimes. Then we have a starving, dehydrated, skinny Standard Poodle and a blown up like a watermelon Boston Terrier who proceeds to squirt out both ends all over the car on the way home. Oh... and did I mention the gas? If the kennel employees didn't notice he LOOKED odd, couldn't they notice his ODOR? (This has happened half a dozen times at more than one kennel!)
The Boston will eat anything, and never chews, which may solve the problem of having to taste it in case it is truly vile. Assorted animal poops, garbage, sticks, compost, dead birds, whole plums with pits... We have taken him to the vet countless times for whatever unknown thing he has eaten. The plum pits were extra aggravating. I guess they resembled bones with a juicy coating. He wanders around the house, mouth open on the floor, resembling a catfish in a tank. Other than eating, sleeping off eating is about his only joy in life.
The Boston can't stand to watch anyone else eat. He shivers and shakes and moans and sucks in his belly and looks like he has a dreadful disease. His slobber starts as a small bubble, expands until it pops and then becomes a string of drool that finally reaches the floor. His moaning and whining increases in intensity until it becomes nearly impossible to have a conversation over him. My husband used to give him his plate to lick after he finished. He had to stop because the Boston started crying as soon as we sat down. Now at least he has the decency to wait three or four minutes to start.
When it is the Boston's dinner time, we have to lock him in his crate so he doesn't inhale his own food, then steal the poodle's.
I don't want to be that dog.
The poodle is a dainty, fastidious eater. He considers each morsel. He picks individual pieces of food out of his bowl and carries them to another room to inspect them. If they meet his approval, he chews them. Sometimes he looks profoundly satisfied while eating. Sometimes he stares at his food dish with clear disdain because all he has is unadorned dog food. And he is better than that. (He prefers his dog food with diced apples, carrots and pears in it. Or bits of chicken or steak.) He let himself into my garden and plucked out every one of the just perfect red, ripe strawberries and ate them, himself, the night I was going to pick them for dinner. He didn't eat any of the pinkish ones. He is too discerning for that.
Even though he is fastidious in the kitchen, he is great fun outside. He follows me all around the farmette. He is playful and joyful and loves his toys.
If I have to eat like a dog, my choice is clear. The Boston is only a reasonable weight against his will. Every cell of his body cries out to be fat. The poodle is perfectly happy to be a reasonable weight. The poodle says certain foods are wonderful and worth savoring. Life is also too wonderful for there to be any point in wasting any time or energy on any mediocre foods! He is ready to go explore it!