The polite response to a spouse who puts on a few extra pounds is “Now there’s more of you to love.” In the case of an overfed, overweight dachshund named Obie, there will soon be less of him to love, though clearly still plenty to go around.
Obie, KOMO News in Portland reports, is at the center of a fierce custody battle. A group called Oregon Dachshund Rescue has filed a lawsuit against the hefty dog’s caretaker, Nora Vanatta, claiming that she doesn’t own him and must ceded custody. Jenell Rangan, the organization’s president, claims, “The dog was surrendered to me. Nora is just a foster. I trusted her to bring him back.”
Vanatta, a certified veterinary technician, agreed to look after Obie after his elderly owners, who were suffering deteriorating health, were no longer able to take care for him. At the time of transfer, Obie weighed in at a whopping 77 pounds, more than twice the normal weight for the species. His aging owners sadly had no idea they were overfeeding him.
Initially, I said that I would foster him for a little while because I would not be able to take care of him financially. But I had no idea how obese he was. It’s going to take a year for him to get to a healthy weight, and I’ve committed to his rehabilitation.
Vanatta began a page on Facebook to chronicle Obie’s battle of the bulge, titling it “Biggest Loser, Doxie Edition,” Since placing Obie on a strict supervised diet in September, Vanatta reports, the pooch has lost 15 pounds. He still has another 25 to go.
Rangan argues that Vanatta isn’t caring for Obie properly, adding, “I don’t want a dime. I just want Obie.”
But Vanatta insists that there was never any paperwork exchanged and that she wants to keep Obie, at least until he reaches his goal weight. The two women are due to appear in court Monday.
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