PET PARADE: My dog is getting old.

My dog is getting old. The other day, I looked at her with fresh vision.

She is gray, not just her muzzle, but up to her eyebrows. She is lumpy. Fatty lipomas and skin tags are multiplying.

Her knees have been bothering her for some time now. She can’t jump up on the bed any more. So, I lift her in each night and help her down each morning. Her eyes are getting that bluish cast so common in old dogs.

Her hearing is still good. She can hear the treat jar open from across the house! And her mind is sound. She will still chase the occasional squirrel, but overall, Dale is entering her twilight years.

None of this diminishes my love or enjoyment of her. I vow to treasure every moment we have.

A dog’s life is too short.

I keep her comfortable with Chinese herbs, special joint supplements and foods.

I take two walks each morning. One short one with both dogs and a longer one with my younger dog. Dale can’t go a long distance, but loves to get out every day.

I keep her mentally stimulated with tricks and training, yes, even at twelve, she likes to be included. We play lots of sniffing games, her nose works great.

Her trick repertoire has diminished. She can’t do all the physical things she used to. But she can count and play a little tug. And she still steals the occasional sock.

That’s fine with me. I like her spunk!

If you have an older dog, embrace them! Take time to enjoy them. Make them comfortable and include them went you can.

Our time together is too short. Cissy Sumner, CPDT-KA, CBCC-KA Best Behavior Dog Training Member, Board of Directors, CCPDT Consulting Dog Trainer & Behavior Counselor for the Humane Society of Vero Beach and Indian River County APDT #062323 AKC Canine Good Citizen Evaluator #13985 Vero Beach, FL 772-978-7863


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