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Bichon Frise Chloe surrounded by her toys

By Leslie, Carna4 Communications

This month we dined with Chloé, an 11-year-old Bichon Frise (meaning curly white lap dog), who has never eaten food from her bowl but prefers to dine off a paper towel (that’s changed with each meal —s’il vous plait).

Chloé’s diet consist of premium dry food and like the other dogs we’ve interviewed to date, it doesn’t include wet food because as her owner Mike says “I just didn’t like the smell of it.” As this pooch is a grazer and scaling stairs gets harder with age, Chloé’s owners, Mike and Tania, leave small portions of her food in select spots (or towels) on each level of their home. Chloé also enjoys the occasional steak handout, milk bones, soft T-bone treats and raw hide bones. (One of her favorite toys is a well-chewed Elmo, which she would devour, if physics allowed it.)

She looks forward to a morning walk and evening game of ball with a bizarre obstacle course twist. After Mike starts the ball rolling down the hall, Chloé retrieves it, drops it, does a “360 loop” around the coffee table, jumps on a favorite chair, runs into her crate and then growls softly. Night after night Chloé follows these steps with military precision and watches to make sure Mike doesn’t miss a beat. (When he slips on occasion, she plants her paws and waits for him to catch up.)

But these days Chloé has less spring in her step, as she moves stoically through her paces. You see, Mike and Tania are no replacements for Baba (grandmother in Ukrainian), the family’s matriarch and Chloé’s trusted friend and beloved walker, who passed away earlier this year. Many articles cite dogs turning off food when they mourn, but not Chloé. She may be turning to food for comfort, as her weight has steadily climbed to 5 lbs (11 kg) above the ideal 20 lbs (44 kg) for her age and size.

To counter this, Chloé’s now on a strict diet (which even forbid her a taste of Carna4), as well as liver pure bites and heart worm medicine. With a balanced diet and a home filled with love and attention (plus human siblings home for the summer), we hope this dainty diner gets her “mojo” back soon.

Has your dog lost a human or dog friend? How did your pooch cope with it? Was it “feast or famine” time? What did you do? Post a comment to tell us how your dog dined while grieving.

Chloé’s Stats:
Breed – Bichon Frise
Age – 11 years
Weight – 25 lbs (55 kg)
Health – Good (except for a cyst in her ear that was treated)
Exercise – 1 walk/day totaling 10 mins. to a half hour
Favorite Food – Soft T-bone treats