Ask Rocco: 05/12

If your dog is fat, you’re not getting enough exercise

By Rocco Castellano

Not too many fans of mine know this, but my wife and I have a couple of Pomeranians. We’ve had upwards of nine at one time in our home. Yes, feeding time was as insane as you can imagine. We’re huge advocates of rescuing the hard cases – Pomeranians that no one really wants: older, sick, puppy-mill survivors, those with behavioral problems and mostly siblings. That means we take two brothers, two sisters or a brother and a sister, all of which are hard to place in a forever home.

Now I have a very unique perspective on dog parents/owners that allow their dogs to get fat:

1. You are a lazy piece of shit and don’t walk your dog.

2. You feed the dog like he’s going to the chair, and most likely human food (table scraps.)

3. You decided you wanted a dog when you were doing shots at the bar and forgot you have no f**king clue how to be a dog parent.

4. … And this is the most popular, your girlfriend or boyfriend left you with the dog you picked out together and you have no f**king clue what to do with him.

Dogs, like humans, need to move in order to be healthy. We are mechanical beings made to do physical work and so are dogs, no matter their size. Toy breeds were all bred down from a larger breed that most likely did work. Since I have Pomeranians, I know they were bred down from a German Spitz, which was predominately a guard dog. With these little dogs, exercise is key to their health. Genetics dealt them a pretty shitty hand in terms of the potential ailments they could contract. Exercise and proper nutrition is the key to keeping these dogs healthy.

When you take on the responsibility of taking in a dog, your life will change. It’s kind of like a kid, but dogs have instincts and kids don’t. So, really, sometimes having a dog is better than having a kid.

How many times a day do you walk your dog or exercise with him?

If he’s fat, obviously not enough. Dogs, like people, need to be walked at least three times a day for 10-15 minutes. Some breeds like American Bull Terriers need 45 minutes of vigorous exercise to keep them healthy. So if you are walking your dog three times a day for 10-15 minutes each time, you are not only making sure your dog doesn’t get fat but you are actually keeping yourself healthy as well. Holy shit … it’s magic, call me David Copperfield.

Now let’s talk about your fat ass.

If you are fat and you have been thinking about getting a dog, it may be better than getting that treadmill you keep eyeing. It won’t be any cheaper, but at least a dog will make you walk him. As much as you wish a treadmill would get you in a headlock and drag your ass over to exercise, it just won’t happen. So, you wasted $2,500 on a dry cleaning hanger for your basement.

Just to add a little science into this commentary. A bunch of studies show dogs can be extremely powerful motivators to get you moving. Dog owners are not only more likely to take their dogs on walks but also are more active in general than lazy f**ks that don’t have dogs.

In a study published by researchers at Michigan State University, 60 percent of dog owners who took their dogs on regular walks qualified for the federal criteria of regular moderate to vigorous exercise. What was cool was almost half of the dog walkers on average walked for 30 minutes a day, a minimum of five days a week. Compare that to a third that didn’t have a dog getting that much exercise.

If your dog is fat, realize how f**king lazy you are or how irresponsible you are in your own eating to allow a furry friend to blow up like a beach ball. Do a self-evaluating audit and get your shit together with your own eating and exercise habits. It will have some awesome effects on your little furry buddy and more than likely keep you from spending a fortune at the doctors and veterinarian. Really? What am I a financial counselor now?

For your own health and the health of man’s best friend, make sure you walk your dog at least three times a day for a minimum of 10 minutes (I’d like to see 20 minutes but I can’t hold your f**cking hand). Don’t feed your dog human food because it will make them fat. In the instance that you are most likely an idiot, human food that you feed your dog isn’t balanced and their bodies doesn’t process it the way our body does.

Moral of the story: get out and walk your f**king dog! And if you don’t have one, go to the nearest rescue and get one and be a responsible dog parent.

Rocco Castellano is the author of “askROCCO Uncensored v1,” a speaker and a controversial fitness personality who has won an Emmy for his fitness training role in MTV’s Made. For more information, please visit

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Rocco Castellano is the author of “askROCCO Uncensored v1,” a speaker and a controversial fitness personality who has won an Emmy for his fitness training role in MTV’s Made. For more information, please visit

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