The Avocado—Loving Dog
from the book, "Our Fascinating Earth"

Book: 
Our Fascinating Earth

The Avocado—Loving Dog

The principal daily exercise for many dogs is running to their food bowl or begging for extras. More enterprising dogs scrounge meals from neighbors and local garbage cans.

Although basically carnivorous, numerous dogs can develop an appetite for almost anything, even candy and cookies. These junk foods, often given as hors d'oeuvres or rewards, supply far more calories than the average dog needs. The overweight dog is as much a problem to the veterinarian as its plump master is to a physician. The causes of canine obesity are similar to those of humans, with overeating at the top of the list.

Now a new problem has arisen in California: the avocado—loving dog. The avocado is a nutritious fruit containing many necessary food elements. It has a high caloric value and contains oils of unsaturated fatty acids.

The avocado has a definite place in the human menu but is an unnecessary addition to the canine diet. Some dogs, however, can't seem to leave them alone and have been observed to polish off all the fruit dropped in a grove. If that isn't enough, they will pick all they can reach from trees. Real dog gourmets even bury them to let them age. Some dogs carry an avocado around with them during the day in case they need a snack.

On such a diet weight gains have been phenomenal. One avocado—eating beagle, whose normal weight should have been about twenty—five pounds, weighted sixty—two pounds. It is an awesome sight to see a four—pound chihuahua devouring a half—pound avocado. Perhaps the owner should take a second look at his pet's dimensions before giving in to its wistful glance at guacamole.