Senior Dogs

Happy Thorsday, little friday and Thankful Thursday! 

Courtesy of BlogPaws

Courtesy of BlogPaws

You’ll note today’s topic is addressed exclusively on this blog.  Not only is the DIVA in denial about her age, but she’s in a MOOD and is asserting herself all over the place.  

The fact is, I’ve been trying to come to grips with the DIVA’s aging process for about a year.  Her red is fading out, and she’s not leaping to high heights as often anymore.  We still log 20+ miles a week, and she’s generally the one who pushes for a run when we do run, but none of us is growing younger.


Fred, showing off his largeness

When a dog becomes a senior is as open for debate as the classification is for humans.  It’s even muddier for a basset, because some sources classify them as a large breed, and sometimes, large breeds are considered seniors around 5-6 years of age.  Most sources though classify bassets as a medium breed, so Sis, who will be 6 in October, isn’t a senior yet.  I’m selfishly going with that interpretation in part because our vets have laughed about Sis greying prematurely, and because while she’s not the tiny, petite basset I said I wanted,  she lacks Fred’s extra-dense frame. 

Senior dogs have the same potential challenges senior humans face.   They have more aches and pains, making routine activities annoying rather than fun some days.  Their metabolisms slow.  They can develop arthritis and even senility.  Hearing and vision sometimes fade, as do their coats.  The best approach is to talk to your vet about any changes in your dog’s appearance or habits.  Poor Fred required better living through pharmacology, beginning when he was about 6, but Sissy has made her own subtle adjustments, and I think that as long as she remains trim and active, she isn’t likely to need even joint supplements for a good while.

There are even vets who specialize in senior pets.  The vet we saw immediately after Wondervet moved away has a special interest in senior pet care, but she was also fabulous for timid Gg.  

I’m thankful that I live in an age when our pets are family, where limited, quality ingredient treats and pet foods are becoming the norm, where we have access to highly trained specialists for our pets.   And I’m always grateful for our blogging community.   Many of you have become treasured friends!

What are you thankful for today?



9 comments on “Senior Dogs

  1. Katherine says:

    You are so fortunate that Sissy is still young and active and I love that you take such good care of her and Gg! I wish every dog in the world had such loving people as Sissy, Gg, Macy and Max!!

    I’m thankful for a vet who calls Macy “Old Girl” but treats her like she is every bit the young beauty she was years ago. According to our vet Macy is extremely healthy for an 11 year-old and her coat is thick and lush even through she is gray around the muzzle. At 15 pounds she maintains her girlish figure and runs and jumps (most days) like the horses she loves so much. We, like you, are truly blessed!

  2. kathy boyer says:

    im thankful for you Channon!!! Seriously thankful.

    Im thankful for my vet Kristine. i’m thankful the humidity is leaving the area for just 2 days but we;ll take it . Im thankful Pie gained a bit of weight. Up from 3lb 5 oz to 3lb 7.5 oz in a week.

    Thankful for good sleep in the a/c last night

  3. AlisonH says:

    Why, you, friend. And other good people in my life. I love that you are so attuned to your dogs and their needs and that their vet is too.

  4. Marjie says:

    Sissy is not a senior. She is not a large dog. She’s medium, Gretchen is small. There! Now that we’ve got that out of the way….I”m thankful for virtual friends like you! And I’m thankful for all of the pets out there who are so loved. And I”m thankful that Dan replaced the guts in my toilet, rather than having to go buy a whole new porcelain throne. How’s that for a mix of sentiment?

  5. We certainly have at least one senior dog, as Misty is fast approaching her 15th birthday! Her eyes are clouded, and her hearing is worse by the day…but she is still spry ( jumps onto sofa daily) and happy. At 8 1/2, Sasha is just a mature adult…let us not speak ‘senior’ in her presence! Thankful for…son and DIL’s up-coming visit…when we will spend days at the coast!!!

  6. sue says:

    I agree that Sis is a medium sized dog and as a senior myself who hates the term, I prefer to call her a youthful adult.

    Every evening for years Fudge has plopped himself on my lap whether I’m doing something like knitting or not. He needs a cuddle and some sweet talk at the end of the day.

    When I look at Morgan I’m thankful to still have her in our lives. We expected her to die of liver failure at age 3. That was ten years ago.

  7. gmarie says:

    I’m thankful for my velveteen friends. I’m thankful to have the money to spend on my dogs when it was needed. I’m actually very thankful for dogs who grey – I think it’s beautiful and as sad as Beau’s turning grey makes me – I’m pleased he’s living long enough for it to happen. I’m thankful that Abby is getting better health through pharmacology – I don’t have a problem with that.

    There is absolutely no question that both of my dogs are senior. Beau just turned 10 on the 11th and Abby will be 13 on December 1.


  8. Nichole says:

    I’m thankful my seniors are chugging along………..

  9. Nancy says:

    Twenty miles of running in a week plus daily activity are helping Sissy stay young and fit. I’m glad her human family has taken such good care of her.

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