Leven met Sierra en tips over de zorg voor oudere hondenmaart 3, 2020
February 23, 2020
his cancer here. As Sierra, our white boxer, ages we often get asked about the type of food we feed her and the things we do to keep her going for almost 15 years. So we want to share our thoughts in caring for senior dogs and what we do to keep them happy and healthy. We’ve lived through the process of caring for an old dog before and have learned a lot about how to manage all the changes that come with being dog parents.
She’ll be 15 years old in August 2020, which in human years equates to being well over 90 years old. We brought her home when she was 8 weeks old and she still has the same energy and excitement for cuddles and walks almost 15 years later. She’s significantly slower now, often falling and tripping because her lower back and two back legs are giving out. Her left front paw is weak too so she has what we call: 2 and a half flat tires. As long as she has 1 and a half good tired left she’s happy to still be able to get around the house. We’ve figure out ways to have her always travel with us because we’ll never ever leave her behind.
Here’s our way to caring for her in her senior years:
- Lots of cuddles and affection. No matter how tired she is, she’ll never pass up love and affection. We always make time to give her head rubs, hugs and love. We’re all happy when we have our cuddle moments.
- Short walks, more often. Her brain says she wants to go everywhere, but her body says it’s tired. We always make sure she still get out to walk, hike and adventure. But the trips are short if she’s walking her own because back legs are giving out on her and she doesn’t have her younger stamina. So we have back-up plans to still get her outdoors and mentally stimulated.
- Doggie Stroller or wagon. We call these her “adventure-mobiles”. We still have her walk alongside her stroller or wagon because it’s important for her to still move. But as soon as we think she’s getting tired, she gets carried in her stroller or wagon and she’s a happy camper traveling in first class. We love this stroller and though it wasn’t meant to be off trail, we’ve used it and abused it in the outdoors. It’s held up well, considering how many dirt puddles and small rocks it’s gone over. We’ve nicknamed it the “Groot-mobile”, which is weird but somehow fits. We’ve added on a good bicycle headlight for getting back to the car easier at the end of the day. The wagon (one kind of like this which we got at Costco) is just a utility wagon, not meant for dogs. But again, we’re all about comfort for Sierra and it’s worked for us on city trails.
adventure harness. We call it an adventure harness because she get lifted over areas where she can’t get her back legs over anymore. Now that she’s lost even more mobility in her back legs, we’re thinking of getting her this better harness which a couple vets have suggested. They approved of her current harness, but the back lift helper on the other harness is a bit of an improvement over ours.
This bed is our current house favorite. Sierra starts to “leak” more often, so we lay washable pee pads on the beds, which saves us washing the beds every day. These pee pads are small and easy to wash and manage.
diane, todd, sierra and lexi