Friday, February 4, 2011

Canine Cognitive Dysfunction

In dogs, as in humans, aging is progressive & irreversible. Dogs can undergo a variety of physical & metabolic changes that may cause discomfort and/or change their behaviour. As dogs age, their cognitive ability tends to decline.

CCD is often referred to as “old dog syndrome” or “senility”. Symptoms can be disorientation, appearing lost or confused in the house or yard, getting “stuck” in corners or under/behind furniture, staring into space or walls, difficulty finding the door, not recognizing familiar people or responding to their own name, interaction with family members—seeks attention less often, does not want to be petted, no longer greeting family members, and for Xena, who once loved to be held....she would no longer snuggle.

We found her sleeping more more during the day & less at night, heavy pacing, wandering & crying were also symptoms she was experienced. Some dogs bark for no reason. whereas she would cry. Nothing we tried would pacifiy her.

Housetraining—urinaing indoors; having accidents indoors soon after being outside. We pretty much depend on pee pads now....

The vet informed us that because older dogs may also develop other health problems, diagnosis of CCD can only be reached after other medical conditions that have behavioral components have been ruled out.

Along with Clomicalm, Xena has been prescribed a sedative, to help her sleep. We also use the D.A.P. (Dog Appeasing Phermone) plug in...)

Our goal is to keep Xena as content as possible & monitor her closely should the symptoms accelerate.


Oskar said...

Great information. I hope that wall thingie helps!

Nubbin wiggles & hugs,

Frankie Furter said...

This is a SAD and yet very informative post. I hope that this has been Shared with Twix's family. This may be something useful and or SOOTHING for them to read.

Tooki said...

So sad to read that's how things will end for our dogs (and us). Whenever my mind starts thinking negative I just remind myself to appreciate each day, don't worry about tomorrow. How else to be happy.......