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Easing Old Age?


Guest Mollysmum
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Guest Mollysmum

Hi all

 

I've not had to post here for a long time, which is nice, but now things are changing for Molly. She has cataracts in both eyes, has begun pacing, and getting "stuck" in places she's known for 9 years. The biggest development is that July 4th came and went with no pacing, panting, drooling etc which has been the norm for as long as I can remember when she hears fireworks. I know at almost 14 she's had a long life but I want it to be longer! I want to make the aging process easier for her and am looking for some tried and tested methods to ease her days. She's losing weight too (with no medical reason) so I have been giving her the nasty canned food she loves mixed in with her kibble but I'm not seeing any weight gain.

 

I guess what I need is any hints, tips, dietary changes that anyone feels can make things easier. She appears stressed when she gets "unstuck" and I hate watching it. She's been my baby since 2004 and has made our house and home, and has been instrumental in teaching my pack how to act like ladies and gentlemen.

 

TIA!

 

M

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I have some suggestions from a neurologist we saw the other day. I'll post them when I can figure out how to paste into GT replies (which I haven't been able to do for ages). But for now: B vitamins, with B1 being the most important for cognition, and Sam-e. Those are the OTC things you can do. It sounds like you should use a prescription med, though, which would be Anipryl, if she is getting lost and stuck in corners. We're not nearly there at our house. Can your vet handle this kind of thing?

 

ETA: It's going to take too long to straighten out my computer problems! So...

 

B1 is thiamine, or you can use a B-complex. Vet said "Usually one vitamin pill (anywhere from 100-250 mg/day) with food is a good starting dose. This supports brain function." Omega-3 fatty acids; DHA supports cognition more than EPA does.

 

Also: "Keeping him/her active and engaged with toys and treats is also helpful to prolong normal brain function for as long as possible."

 

Hope this helps. But really, I'd see the vet and get Anipryl as well as supplementing vitamins.. There are things like Xanax you can try for anxiety, as well.

 

Anipryl is also called Selegiline, just fyi.

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Mary with Jumper Jack (2/17/11) and angels Shane (PA's Busta Rime, 12/10/02 - 10/14/16) and Spencer (Dutch Laser, 11/25/00 - 3/29/13).

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At 14, there is probably very little you can do for her except give her anything she wants, love her, and prepare yourself for the inevitable. Sounds like she has gotten senile. If she's losing weight their no doubt IS a medical reason--it just hasn't been figured out yet. I don't personally no how effective the doggy dementia medication is, but you might discuss that with your vet.


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Susan,  Hamish,  Mister Bigglesworth and Nikita Stanislav. Missing Ming, George, and Buck

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My Onyx did very well up til that horrid icy winter. She always had 6 steps to do to get in and out of the house. And I think that was one of the things that kept her back end going. I also gave her Ensure to help keep her weight. She didn't seem to have arthritis, so really wasn't in obvious pain.

 

She lived to 15.5

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It's so hard to see them age. I agree with GeorgeofNE in that there's probably not a lot you can do, though a vet visit is always a good start for geriatric blood panel etc.

 

There are threads already on here about seniors losing weight and the difficulty of keeping it on some of them. There are threads about weak back ends. There are threads about doggie Alzheimers and incontinence. I'm not sure anyone has the answers, but If you have access to a specialist in canine geriatric medicine you might try that route. I'd be reluctant to put a 14 yr old through much in the way of invasive procedures though.

 

Once you've ruled out the obvious medical problems, I think half the battle is managing pain and weight. The bottom line (for me) is this: what is the answer to the question 'is she enjoying life?' and I think that once they reach 13-14 years old, it's a question that needs to be asked almost on a daily basis.

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The plural of anecdote is not data

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I just wanted to add re weight loss that the seniors lose a great deal of muscle mass all over which clearly makes them much thinner, this is often simply due to the reduced level of activity as per humans of advanced age. It is not necessarily a sign of illness. But I agree with others who say feed her whatever she wants and likes, maybe even giving more feeds per day if her digestion can take it.

 

This is what I did with my angel Sadi when she got really old, eventually she did have increasing digestive problems and although nothing specific was diagnosed (it probably wouldn't have been possible without being too invasive) along with her other problems it added up towards making her final journey.

 

I hope you can find things that will make her more comfortable, enjoy every day with your precious little old lady.

<p>"One day I hope to be the person my dog thinks I am"Sadi's Pet Pages Sadi's Greyhound Data PageMulder1/9/95-21/3/04 Scully1/9/95-16/2/05Sadi 7/4/99 - 23/6/13 CroftviewRGT

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Guest FordRacingRon

Hi all

 

I've not had to post here for a long time, which is nice, but now things are changing for Molly. She has cataracts in both eyes, has begun pacing, and getting "stuck" in places she's known for 9 years. The biggest development is that July 4th came and went with no pacing, panting, drooling etc which has been the norm for as long as I can remember when she hears fireworks. I know at almost 14 she's had a long life but I want it to be longer! I want to make the aging process easier for her and am looking for some tried and tested methods to ease her days. She's losing weight too (with no medical reason) so I have been giving her the nasty canned food she loves mixed in with her kibble but I'm not seeing any weight gain.

 

I guess what I need is any hints, tips, dietary changes that anyone feels can make things easier. She appears stressed when she gets "unstuck" and I hate watching it. She's been my baby since 2004 and has made our house and home, and has been instrumental in teaching my pack how to act like ladies and gentlemen.

 

TIA!

 

M

I have an 11 year old and really all I can say is I am sorry you have to see this happen.

 

Regarding the getting stuck etc. I thought my dog had Doggy Alzheimer's and did some research before going to a neurologist. What you describe sounds like classic symptoms. Even though I did start the Anipryl the neurologist doesn't think she has the disease but said to continue. My dog did not get stuck in corners chich is a classic symptom but she does do the sundowner thing but he isn't sure she might just be again differently. The Anipryl is expensive (like 100 bucks a month) but you say to yourlef you would never spend that but you do,,they are our babies.

 

My dog walks every day and has walked everyday for most of the time we have had her,,save for the 6 months she was down form the pitbull attack. So her muscle mass is pretty good but her appetite just isn't what it used to be. To get her to eat I use something,,probably more then I should,,called Viyo. I saw my vet giving some to a lady who's cat just was out of surgery and it is supposed to be an appetite enhancer among other things. they have it for dogs too (1800petmeds). I have to give her the stinky canned food too but if I cover her food with this as though it were gravy she laps it up.

 

My dog has lost some vision in one eye. I just make sure there is nothing on the floor in her normal paths so she can't trip on it.

It is just heartbreaking when our pups get old and I pray my dog could get to 14 but I don't think ti is in the cards but you never know. Jsut love her the best you you can and give her anything her heart desires.

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My Nutmeg just turned 13 so I've been thinking of this. Some general ideas:

 

About all I remember of a "Celebrating Greyhounds" article years ago about greys aging gracefully is to provide structure, but variation within the structure for stimulation. Example: If she still likes to go on walks, take a walk at the same time every day but change the location a little.

 

Eating: Most of my elderly dogs have wanted to eat MEAT. If you search GT for satin balls (ground meat with added ingredients for nutrition and yumminess), you'll find different recipes. Diane Burpdog likes to feed her elders frozen BilJac dogfood, which looks like cubed beef.

 

There was a thread on GT once about putting scents at doorways or on furniture around the house to help dogs with sudden vision problems re-learn their way around. I think it might be a good sensory stimulus in general for an elderly dog. In humans, smell is the sense with the most direct pathway to its processing areas in the brain. And dogs have such superior senses of smell -- maybe Molly's is better than her sight or hearing. You can buy stick-on scent pads http://www.amazon.com/Tracerz-Blind-Dogs-Extended-Markers/dp/B0061O0O2S or just use different essential oils or citrus peels.

 

Doggy massage?

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remembering Eve, Baz, Scout, Romie, Nutmeg, and Jeter

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Guest FordRacingRon

 

 

Eating: Most of my elderly dogs have wanted to eat MEAT. If you search GT for satin balls (ground meat with added ingredients for nutrition and yumminess), you'll find different recipes. Diane Burpdog likes to feed her elders frozen BilJac dogfood, which looks like cubed beef.

 

 

This part is really true. When she was young Leia wanted vegys with her kibble (she liked cabbage believe it or not) but now she has to have meat with her kibble or it's a no-go. I use leanest hamburger, drained of as much fat as I can drain off.

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This part is really true. When she was young Leia wanted vegys with her kibble (she liked cabbage believe it or not) but now she has to have meat with her kibble or it's a no-go. I use leanest hamburger, drained of as much fat as I can drain off.

 

True of Jeffie too. We have him on the puppy kibble mixed with meat at the moment, but he still picks out the meat first and often leaves a lot of the kibble.

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The plural of anecdote is not data

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Guest FordRacingRon

 

True of Jeffie too. We have him on the puppy kibble mixed with meat at the moment, but he still picks out the meat first and often leaves a lot of the kibble.

That is why I like to use that Viyo stuff. It evidently tastes like chicken and is full of vitamins. I pour the allotted amount on the kibble and mix it up before adding the meat.

 

A long time ago when I told a lady at Petco that Leia liked cabbage in her kibble, the lady said "she must be Irish". Well truth be told,she probably does have Irish blood in her but she is pure Texan.

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That is why I like to use that Viyo stuff. It evidently tastes like chicken and is full of vitamins. I pour the allotted amount on the kibble and mix it up before adding the meat.

 

A long time ago when I told a lady at Petco that Leia liked cabbage in her kibble, the lady said "she must be Irish". Well truth be told,she probably does have Irish blood in her but she is pure Texan.

 

Viyo is expensive over here. To add that into their diet would add nearly £10 a week onto our dog food bill.

 

My DIL is Irish. She often jokes that that's why she loves potatoes so much! :lol

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The plural of anecdote is not data

Brambleberry Greyhounds My Etsy Shop

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Guest FordRacingRon

 

Viyo is expensive over here. To add that into their diet would add nearly £10 a week onto our dog food bill.

 

My DIL is Irish. She often jokes that that's why she loves potatoes so much! :lol

10 pounds is probably less then it would cost here. Probably closer to 13 pounds.

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Guest FordRacingRon

Wow. Well, I've bookmarked it as a possible supplement for the bad times. I'd have to order online because I've never seen it in the shops. Do you have to do that?

I first got it from my vet but they ran out and have trouble stocking it (I think that is a vet lie). I get mine from 1800petmeds. The vet told me is was prescription,,it is not. It has a lot of vitamins in it to help dogs recuperating and I am not sure I should be using if for as long as I had,,but it helps my dog want to eat and at 11 I figure that is a priority. BTW,,if you find their homepage one of their "models" is a greyhound.

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Guest AbbyH

This may be totally unrelated and I am not a vet. I recently lost a dachshund who was 15 1/2. He was suffering kidney failure. Near the end he would get "stuck." He would walk into things and into places he would normally know to avoid. Our vet told us that the kidney deficit caused a buildup of ammonia his blood which caused the mental problems.

 

It might be worth checking Molly's kidney function. There are meds that can help and they are not expensive. Unfortunately for my boy his tummy could not tolerate them.

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I have read two articles just recently about Cholodin by MVP Laboratories. (Available on Amazon.) It appears to address multiple age related conditions and some of the reviews are quite encouraging. With a 10 and 11 year old, I'm looking for ways to keep them engaged for as long as possible and will watch the media for more information until I need to make a decision.

Linda, Mom to Fuzz, Barkley, and the felines Miss Kitty, Simon and Joseph.Waiting at The Bridge: Alex, Josh, Harley, Nikki, Beemer, Anna, Frank, Rachel, my heart & soul, Suze and the best boy ever, Dalton.<p>

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Guest FordRacingRon

I have read two articles just recently about Cholodin by MVP Laboratories. (Available on Amazon.) It appears to address multiple age related conditions and some of the reviews are quite encouraging. With a 10 and 11 year old, I'm looking for ways to keep them engaged for as long as possible and will watch the media for more information until I need to make a decision.

My vet also had my dog take something called Neutricks. Find it on Amazon.

 

Honestly we thought she had CCD (and still may but the neurologist thinks it could just be her version of old age) but not Cholodin, not Neutrikcs, not Anipryl (the FDA drug)seemed to make much difference. I have two different dogs. the normal , lazy one from sunup until about 530pm. Then I have the insane, hungry all the time, panting pacing dog for the next 6 hours.

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