As our pups get older, many changes happen gradually and often go unnoticed. I am a HUGE advocate for developing a relationship with your veterinary community / hospital and trying to spoil them rotten before you need them in crisis Cause you will one day need them in crisis. But also, that relationship opens the door for important conversations.
As our dog’s age, their bodies and brains go through a lot of predictable changes. But like us, they are all individuals in how things progress. Having a good understanding of your dog’s previous baseline bloodwork and bone structure is a great resource. But if you haven’t done that in the past, it doesn’t minimize the importance of knowing what is going on right now.
So the pictured graphic is where I start, and where I ask my clients to. We need to know as much as we possibly can. Annual bloodwork gives insight on organ function. X-rays show arthritis and other structural changes. Did you know that adrenal disease often presents as anxiety symptoms? And also there is a HUGE correlation between pain and stress/anxiety or aggression. Knowing what is happening INSIDE lets us treat the whole dog.
So this Part 2 is really about the FIRST STEP. Get a comprehensive medical work up on your senior dog. No ethical trainer will start making behavior modification suggestions without in-depth insight on your pet’s physical health and condition. And any ethical trainer will want to be a PART of your integrative path, valuing the information from the other parts. If your trainer implies that they know more than your medical professional……yeah, no they don’t Trust the trainer that your vets are happy to work with, because a comprehensive team will be able to address all aspects of having a dog you LOVE to LIVE with – and is comfortably LOVING living it’s senior years.
Again, we would love to see your Sweet Senior posted on social media with the hashtag #SweetSeniorSeries. If I may use your dog’s picture in future posts, please let me know.