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Thursday, December 8, 2016

The Names of Simon: Chunky Monkey

For most of his life, Simon has been my Chunky Monkey.

Simon is what vets call "a competitive eater." This means he will eat everything in the bowl, puke it up, and eat it again. He used to race the dog whenever that horrific uk-ka uk-ka uk-ka noise started elsewhere.

Aside: I do not allow anyone to eat puke if I am there to stop it. Ick, and beyond ick.

Even though he rarely ate Human Food (touching and tasting with The Paw didn't count), he roamed the house searching for any morsel of dog or cat food that might have been overlooked. It's possible all his interest in open doors might stem from looking for the next meal.

One terrifying time, he slipped out the back door to chase a stray tom. They raced around the neighbor's house, and the stray darted through the space between the privacy gate and the main fence. Simon tried to follow and did one of those cartoon blubber-bounce-backs (think Mr. Incredible in the rocket tube). I thank God for it; it was the only way I would have caught him. He was big, but fast.

Three or four years ago he topped out at 19 lbs. This on a 13 lb frame. The dieting began in earnest. The hardest part was Hungry Simon was even more vicious than Fat Simon. Balancing between what was healthy for him and what was healthy for the household was almost more than I could handle.

As the weight came off, he resumed some obnoxious behavior I'd forgotten. Jumping on top of the fridge when there wasn't room. Chasing the others off the catwalks. Nearly jumping into the electric skillet. Jumping anywhere, really.

Which is why his weight loss was so flummoxing. I'd always expected diabetes to kill Simon, not intestinal cancer.

My Chunky Monkey will finish his race at 9.3 pounds. He's never looked better. I've never been sorrier.

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