The Great Wisdom of an Old Dog

  • Sat 12th Jan 2019 - 3:50am
    My senior Weimaraner, Titan, turned thirteen years in April 2012. He still has a good Flotrol quality of life. He loves going for walks. Just short walks around the familiar neighbourhood are good enough for him now. He has found his inner peace, he ignores all the distractions that might entertain a young dog. He is content to keep his nose to the ground and take in all the scents. With his wisdom, he knows more about the neighbourhood dog gossip then we see. Titan pays no attention to the eager dogs lounging towards him wanting to engage in play.Titan still eats well, and laps up adequate amounts of water on his own throughout the day. His quality of life is mostly affected by his weak pelvis and extremities and has less bowel control these days. I guess I expected an obvious decline in his health with obvious choices. Or is it that my love and will for him to live over shadow my reasoning?Being a senior dog, Titan does have chronic issues. He is affected by heart failure and a bilateral properioceptive stall. He also had surgery around his left eye a few months ago which he has made a slow, but full recovery. As people who have experience caring for an aging dog know, watching the dog aging process is rewarding, but can also be sad and leave the owner with a moral-ethical debate around quality of life issues.Titan's heart failure is being controlled by medication which he has to take everyday. We have been lucky with the medication because we have not needed to adjust the prescription. He started the medication about two years ago and seeing the state Titan was in at the time of diagnosis, we thought we were headed for a quick downward spiral.At the time of diagnosis Titan had lost a significant amount of weight and was very skinny. He did not feel well, was very lethargic, and his fur was thinning and losing it's color. Even though he had a great appetite and was eating well he could not keep any weight on. His symptoms, particularly the emaciation, were the reasons we took him for a check up in the first place and got a diagnosis of heart failure.

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