Meanwhile, your dad and your brothers sit around the dinner table, eyeing you and your mother and all that grapefruit, feeling way happy that they're the ones eating meatloaf.
So yeah. It would be totally weird not to have a goal involving weight loss at the first of a new year. However, this January I am mixing things up. I'm not putting myself on a diet (although after pounding down homemade caramels during the entire month of December LIKE IT WAS MY JOB, I probably should).
This year I am putting my dog on a diet.
Not the Newfoundland, Zora. Zora weighs about as much as an entire NFL offensive line, but that's OK. She's a big-boned girl, don't you know. It's her little buddy, a Cavalier named Holmes, who needs to slim down.
It's very true that when Holmes first came to us nearly two years ago, he was already on the pleasingly plump side. But lately people have begun to say things like, "Dude, your dog looks like a footstool" or "Dude, your dog looks like a hairy footstool" or "Dude, your dog smells like a hairy footstool."
And you know what? The people are right.
How did this happen?
Well, for one thing Holmes thinks he is a Newfoundland, too, which means he also thinks he's entitled to eat as much as a Newfoundland, which means he likewise thinks he's entitled to eat as much as livestock. Because that's what Newfies are. Livestock. Who live in your house.
But the bigger problem is this: When Holmes looks up at me with those enormous brown eyes full of yearning for food, I CANNOT resist, because I am often filled with yearning for food, too. Especially Mexican food. In fact, sometimes the only thing I do all day long is sit on my front porch and yearn for Mexican food.
So when I meet a fellow yearner, I have a hard time saying no. It's just "sí, sí" with me all the time. You want a pork tamale smothered with mole sauce? Hey! Me, too! Let's go find one RIGHT! NOW!
Therefore, I must own the fact that I am a big part of my dog's problem. That's why I'm taking myself in hand and putting him on a diet. I'll track his weight loss weekly on my Tribune Facebook page.
Now here's the deal: I've never been very successful at helping dogs meet weight loss goals. It's not one of my superpowers, you know? So please feel free to share any and all dieting dog tips with me. (Unless, of course, grapefruit is involved: When it comes to diets and grapefruit, just put a fork in me because I am done.)
Wish us luck!
Ann Cannon can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or facebook.com/anncannontrib.