When Honey the beagle was first brought to the Niagara County SPCA in June 2017, the severely overweight canine clocked in at 68 pounds — more than twice the size of an average beagle. Her original owner possibly suffered from dementia, which had resulted in Honey’s being constantly overfed.
By the time Honey was taken out of the home, the seven-year-old dog was so severely overweight that couldn’t even walk and didn’t have much quality of life. Sadly, the unknown person who surrendered her had recommended that the dog be put down.
Fortunately, sensing that Honey’s health problems could be fixed, the shelter refused the request. Now almost a year later, Honey the beagle has a happy ending to her story: She has lost over 60% of her body weight and has gained a new forever family in the process!
How Honey Went From Overweight To Healthy
“She wiggled her way into my heart,” said Susan Cable in an interview with Simplemost. Cable had been a volunteer dog walker at the SPCA for over four years when she first met Honey. Thanks to thyroid medication and physical therapy, including walking on a water treadmill and doing obstacle courses that the shelter volunteers put together for her, Honey had already began to lose weight when Cable entered her life.
Believing that Honey could benefit from more personalized attention and space to move around in, Cable asked the shelter if she could foster the beagle.
At home, Honey had the opportunity to have explore the house and yard, something that the dog probably hadn’t been able to do in years. Due her her weight, her initial “walks” at the shelter had consisted of being placed on a flatbed cart and wheeled around, since Honey could only drag herself by her front legs in order to move. But being in foster care helped accelerate Honey’s weight loss and, over time, she regained the ability to walk on her own. The more she was able to move, the more playful Honey became, said Cable.
“She became interested in tug-o-war, and she can even run a bit now,” said Cable. “It’s amazing to think that she was almost put down.”
Recently, Cable decided to adopt Honey, a dog she described as a “sweetheart,” and made her an official part of the family. “[Honey] made me happy, and I knew how to take care of her,” she said of the decision. “Even when she was first brought into the shelter, I could tell what a sweet dog she was.”
Nowadays, the duo enjoy long walks on the beach near their home when the weather is nice out and all her new healthy lifestyle has done her good. At her last veterinarian appointment, Honey’s official weight was 26 pounds — a dramatic 42-pound weight loss in less than a year!
Check her out now frolicking around her home:
What Dog Owners Should Do To Keep Their Pups Healthy
Although Honey’s story had a happy ending, dog owners should take care to not allow their pets to become so overweight. To keep a pooch healthy and happy, Cable recommended that dog owners always feed their animals a set amount of food, ideally twice a day, and never allow a dog to “free feed.” As you can imagine, dogs who are allowed to eat as much as they want will do exactly that!
Cable also recommended giving a dog healthy treats, like a small amount of green beans, carrots or sweet red peppers. Exercise is also important, but as Cable noted, “as long as you don’t overfeed them, dogs shouldn’t gain weight.”
We’re so happy to hear about Honey’s healthy lifestyle and we’re grateful she and Cable found each other.