A Lhasa’s View on Whether to “Weight” on Exercise

I really appreciate my veterinarian. She’s a fantastic woman with old-fashioned values and sensible practices. She doesn’t jack up her prices to build a new wing onto her clinic and she doesn’t push medication for every little illness.

We’ve left our two dogs in her kennel from time to time. As many do however, the kennel has prices based on weight. Their cut off is twenty pounds.Jewel for post

Our little Lhasa, Jewel hasn’t an ounce of fat on her because she gets lots of exercise! If she were a woman she’d be a swimsuit model. (Granted she’d need new teeth, but she’d still look great in a bikini.) She stays fit because she fetches her toy down the hallway at full speed, chases birds and bunnies in the backyard with her brother, Sebastian. We also walk over a mile and a half each day.

A few months ago we dropped our dogs off at the kennel before flying off to our son’s wedding. Our little Lhasa weighed in at 19.3 pounds. It was suggested that her food be reduced.

“But,” I protested, “I only give her 1/3 cup of food each morning and afternoon. She’s not fat as you can clearly see. She’s pure muscle!”

“Well, she’s  really close to the top weight,” the assistant cautioned.

Sigh. I have several choices here.

I can reduce her food even more. In the past, she will whine and pat my leg begging for more.  But I’m more stubborn than she is and pay no attention to her plea because it is not in her best interest. In other words, her prayers go unanswered. Similarly, God knows what is best for us and will not reward our pleas for selfish requests either. Her food isn’t too much, in fact it is less than recommended. She doesn’t eat if she’s not hungry and has adjusted to less food.

Second, I could relax our exercise standards, therefore allowing her to gain fat while reducing muscle because muscle weighs more than fat.  Never! This pup is never ill and only incurs one visit to the vet every couple of years for her physical. Health is more important than the number on a scale and healthy habits create a fit and vibrant lifestyle.

Likewise, God is pleased when we care about the body He gave us! Never compare yourself to someone else’s idea of beauty. The world’s standards of what healthy means, changes periodically. During the Victorian age, it was curvy and well rounded while during the ’60s, Twiggy was every teen’s aspiration. Neither was healthy. Health begins from within with sensible eating and exercise, then it shows on our skin and demeanor. God cares about our temple of the Holy Spirit.

Or lastly, I simply accept her as she is and pay the increased fee if she gains weight. I know truth. She’s the best she can be! I’ve trained her not to bark outside or at other dogs as we pass them. She knows the consequences of an house ‘time out’ if she does  (And to her, not chasing birds is the equivalent of life imprisonment.) She gets plenty of praise and belly rubs when she’s good. (I wish she didn’t “woof” down her food so quickly but nothing will break her of that habit.)

So I encourage you, if you are doing everything right in your healthy lifestyle, keep on doing it or recognize you can do better and DO IT! Either way God loves you.

“I will never forget your commandments, for you have used them to restore my joy and health.”  (Psalms 119:93)




12 thoughts on “A Lhasa’s View on Whether to “Weight” on Exercise

  1. Ellie- Your dog is adorable…and I really enjoyed reading your post. It’s good to be reminded not to compare ourselves to others idea of beauty. It’s so easy to think of ourselves as less because of the media focus on what is “perfect”. Your little Lhasa looks perfectly healthy and it would be silly to want her to be anything else but what she is. Good lessons to take away for the weekend. 🙂


  2. Good morning, Ellie! My first thought when I started to read your post was, “What is it like to have small dogs? Haha!! We have three labs; our lovable goofy black lab “Rowdy”, sweet shy yellow lab “Dusty” and our smart and strong sweetie, Daddy’s girl “Kona”. My husband wanted one of each color and they are all rescue dogs. I love the way you related the weight loss and care of our bodies to your dog and her feeding. I have not had a stellar week and am a few pounds up. Self loathing started in and then I read your post. The three principles you shared here; God knows what is best, health is more important than the scale and not comparing myself to someone else’s idea of beauty, are going up on my bathroom mirror as reminders to me of who and whose I am. Please be in prayer for me, and I will be in prayer for you and your ministry.


  3. Oh Wendy, you have such a kind heart to reach out and rescue those dogs. They really were fortunate to find you! Kindness is the nicest quality one can have and you are definitely that! Always remember God cares about those qualities more than the size of the outer shell.

    Stay strong because if you eat healthy then you become healthy in body, mind and spirit! I can promise you when you do, you will NEVER crave the junk and sweets as you did before (this is from my personal testimony) In fact you’ll wonder why you ever found them desirable in the first place. It’s like the Christian who looks back at his decadent lifestyle and wonders the same thing. I will be in constant prayer mode for you Wendy, I know you can do this. Blessings and hugs,


  4. Ellie, I love your moderate attitude about body image. Women are wise to stay away from fashion magazines since they’re rarely promoting a healthy self image. Maybe they’ve changed from years ago when I stopped looking at them. I doubt it–since there’s less money to be made from people who accept their own body type.

    Blessings ~ Wendy ❀


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