I’m the Bob Greene of Healthy Pups!

For over six months I’ve been preaching about my Dog Diet Makeover and am pleased to report that I have converted a few of you.  My plan is so simple; 50% vegetables and fruits, 25% protein and 25% non-wheat/non-corn grain.  This dietary formula is not only perfection for pooches, but for their humans too.

I was tickled this week when I watched fitness-guru Bob Greene on Oprah and he said “50% of what’s on your plate should be fruits and vegetables.”  I am thrilled that my diet already matches what experts advise.

catching my breath after a run

Greene’s new book, 20 Years Younger, is a four-tiered approach to overall health and fitness.  His 4 important areas to master for a healthier, younger body and mind are nutrition, exercise, sleep and skin care.  His book is geared towards bipeds, but this is a lifestyle that I fully support for dogs as well.

I already have a properly balanced diet that closely mimics my mama’s food intake, although my protein (& Wilbur’s) is often meat-based whereas my human no longer consumes land animals.  She still has fish occasionally, but her primary protein sources are tofu and other soy products, legumes and eggs.

Mr. Green suggests 300 minutes of exercise per week.  I hear some humans groan at this number, but it’s really quite easy to fit in those hours — only 5 hours out of 168.  Once or twice a day, Wilbur & I walk with mama, which averages about 30 minutes a day.  Plus, weather permitting, we hit the dog park 5-6 times a week and if it’s raining, we often have a play date with friends.  Our dog park play time can be up to 60 minutes per outing, so our exercise hours add up quickly.

Like humans, sometimes we exercise hard and sometimes we just put in our time with a mellow walk, but the important thing is we are moving consistently.  Leaving Wilbur and I to supervise Bella, mama adds a few hours of tennis and some yoga classes each week as well.

Needless to say, none of us is overweight, even though I sometimes stray from my diet plan (like my assault on the Easter pastries!).

While Wilbur and my eating and exercise habits closely mimic our mama’s, our regimens differ when it comes to sleep and skin care.  Adequate sleep is a challenge for my human, but she is getting better.  On the other paw, Wilbur and I snooze a solid 9 hours every night and we never scrimp on our daytime naps.

Wilbur in excellent health (with excellent skin!)

When it comes to skin care, our real food diet takes care of our dermatological needs.  Once we trashed the kibble, with all it’s processed ungodly (and undogly!) ingredients including wheat and corn, our skin issues magically disappeared.  I no longer get ear infections or scratchy skin and Wilbur’s eye goo is almost nonexistent.  My human is “of a certain age” so her skin care regimen involves various products, lotions and potions.

Humbly speaking of course, I think Mr. Greene and I should collaborate on a healthy lifestyle book that speaks to peeps and pups.  I am a picture of health!

How do you manage nutrition, exercise, sleep and skin care for a healthier you?



  1. You are a model of healthy living, Atticus! I am happy to report that I meet the target of 300 minutes of exercise, but I am sorely lagging on the sleep front. It’s not that don’t try…but this human finds a long sleep hard to come by. I do eat a healthy diet, and although my specific needs include eating meat (I know your mama would prefer otherwise), I am attentive to farming practices and kind care to animals, even when I am going to eat them.

    One thing you didn’t mention that humans need to attend to: sunscreen! Do you ever get sunburned, Atticus? It’s not good for your skin, whether you are worried about cancer or wrinkles.

    Glad you are so healthy and happy, Atticus.

    Judy Stone-Goldman
    The Reflective Writer
    “My cat owns me, my clutter stymies me, my writing frees me. Word maven loves—and learns from—ordinary life.”
    Judy Stone-Goldman recently posted..What Do You Eat on Passover Matzo is Just a Start!

  2. Atticus says:

    Good point with the sunscreen, Judy! mama is religious about her 30 sports-screen! Interestingly, because of Wilbur’s near-albino coloring, mama & our vet worry about his nose and ears in the sun. he already has many freckles on his pink nose. mama tried putting sunscreen on his little, pale snout, but he licked it off! He’s not allowed in the sun too long (unless he’s wearing a sporty visor!).

    Thanks for the reminder :) and, ps, mama has no judgement about people who chose to eat meat… it’s an individual choice.

  3. Good pups! A human’s diet should be based on vegetables and fruits and not on soda, meat, plastic foods, etc.. It’s actually very simple but since most people don’t know how to cook, it becomes a challenge to them. Restaurants don’t offer the foods we are supposed to eat and even the salad section is full of bad stuff and the leaves they offer are mostly romaine or iceberg which has the nutritional value of paper.
    I am not meat-free but as mentioned earlier, meat is just added to my veg diet and not the other way around. Many days I don’t even eat meat. Wheat is non-existent in my diet and processed foods (anything that has a label doesn’t make it over my doorsteps).

    Way to go!
    Franziska San Pedro
    The Abstract Impressionist Artress

  4. Atticus says:

    You’re right Franziska — it is Very simple! humans just make the whole diet thing so complicated…

    I’m so proud of you for eschewing all processed foods! That’s why we’re off kibble — no processed foods for pups or peeps!


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