Author, Professional Pet Sitting Etc.
Has your senior dog been displaying behavioral changes? Behavioral changes in senior dogs are often the result of an underlying physical health problem but can also be indicative of Canine Cognitive Dysfunction. Canine Cognitive Dysfunction or CCD results as a senior dog’s cognitive abilities deteriorate similar to Alzheimer’s in their human counterparts.
What are the symptoms of Canine Cognitive Dysfunction?
- Aggression towards family members
- Change in sleep habits
- Loss of interest in play or socialization
- Eliminating in the house
- Change in eating habits particularly a loss in appetite
- Staring at the wall
- Startling easily
- Difficulty learning new commands or seems to forget previously learned commands
Your veterinary doctor will work closely with you as he diagnoses your dog. He will mostly likely need to rule out some other health issues via diagnostic testing before he can definitely diagnose your dog with Canine Cognitive dysfunction. However, the more information you can provide your vet, the better. You should be able to discuss any and all behavioral changes that you have noticed in your senior dog. Dogs with CCD lack dopamine activity so your veterinarian may prescribe a popular drug by the name of anipryl. This drug may reduce some of the symptoms associated with CCD. However, just as with other areas of veterinary medicine, a holistic approach towards treating and preventing CCD is gaining more popularity. You may consider working with a holistic vet to come up with a plan in addition to the conventional medicine plan that has been put in place. Dietary considerations and supplements are key components that should not be overlooked in your dog’s medical plan.
With your help, some environmental changes may make the onset of CCD a little easier on your dog. Avoid moving the furniture as this will only serve to confuse your dog. Try to keep his day on a routine. Doing this will keep stress at bay or at least not add to your dog’s stress. Be sure to set aside time to play with and exercise your dog. Even if his memory is failing, that does not mean your dog should be ignored and it certainly doesn’t mean you shouldn’t attempt to teach him new things or interact with him. Just keep in mind that he may get frustrated just as elderly humans do when they are suffering from dementia. Always exercise patience with your dog and understand that he will need breaks and may frustrate easily, which may bring about some of the symptoms such as aggression with you.
When dealing with an aging dog, the best thing you can do is provide lots of tender love and care. After all, your senior dog has provided you with many years of loyalty and love. It’s only fair that he lives out his final years with a kind, patient and ever faithful pet parent. That heart of the puppy that you loved and nurtured many years ago is still beating inside your senior dog’s chest.
About the Owner and Professional Pet Sitting Etc
Dorinne Whynott, is a long time animal professional. She is a successful business owner establishing one of the largest pet sitting companies in New Hampshire since 1990. Click to Read her complete History.
Professional Pet Sitting Etc. is a leading business in the pet care field and continues to grow since 1990. It boasts 30+ amazing pet sitters on staff, over 3000 clients in 38 cities from Nashua to Concord, NH. Hundreds of satisfied client testimonials can be found on their website and more 5 star reviews on their Facebook page, Google+ page and more. They have sustained an A+ rating with the BBB and are unmatched in the Pet Sitting Industry in New Hampshire.
Contact us by phone at 603-888-8088
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