Today, Sunday, is a beautiful day. Why? I have my loved ones, Cynthia, Alex, our dog, and Dozer and Sarris, two boarders staying with us at home with me soundly asleep.
We woke up a little before 8am, went for our walk and came back for breakfast. The walk was a little shorter than usual this time since all of them seemed to be tired from yesterday’s walk in DC. All right, even us, humans, are tired as well. You also have to remember that all 3 dogs, Alex, Dozer, and Sarris, are seniors. Ages ranging from 8 to 11 years old, therefore I need to be careful with them because they are more susceptible than younger dogs to excessive heat/cold, long walks, loud sounds, etc.
Alex wearing a gentle leader
I can’t complain. Life is good.
Alex, Dozer, and Sarris Not Cooperating with Cynthia, our Photographer
We, Cynthia, Alex, Dozer, Sarris and I, Marcela, did get a chance to go to the Pack Walk that took place in DC, today, Saturday, September 29, 2012, but because parking in DC is such a nightmare we were not able to walk with Cesar Millan, but we did have a great time.
We Had a Great Time
Doesn’t it show we had a great time? We did.
Lady and her dog taking a break
Two of the many Pit Bulls in attendance
Walking with my canine companions in DC
Tired, after all that walking
Tomorrow, Saturday, September 29, 2012, the Second Annual National Family Pack Walk at the national mall in Washington D.C. will take place. Get more details at: http://www.cesarsway.com/community/PackWalk/Second-Annual-National-Family-Pack-Walk-Event-Details
I’ll try my best to make it with my own pack. Enjoy your weekend and all your canine companions
Josie in Dreamland
Every time a dog is to stay with us, I like to do a little bit of research on that particular breed, but since Josie’s mom told me that Josie was a lab and I knew about the breed, I decided to let it go. Anyway, Josie has come to stay with us a couple of times, but her behavior was not that of a lab. I looked at her very carefully and noticed her quirks and behavior and started my research. Josie, I found out, happens to be a Weimaraner. Aha! Now her behavior makes sense. As per www.terrificpets.com, a Weimaraner is, “Known to be bold and excessively rambunctious, this breed loves to hunt and run. If not allowed to do what their heart truly desires and is pent up, they will develop a destructive manner with sheer frustration. With a tendency to be headstrong and stubborn, lack of exercise or running will force these traits into a negative and unhappy dog. They need a yard that is large enough to run and explore in, and a home that allows them to sleep indoors on cool and cold nights, due to their very short hair.”
The description fitted Josie perfectly. Josie’s beautiful, big body wiggles like crazy every time she sees Alex, while Alex maintains that alpha demeanor so Josie can come down. It usually takes about 2 minutes. Josie is extremely loving, but getting her to do things such as: sit, down, come, etc., is a struggle. Her mom said that she knew all this commands, but I think she has selective hearing like Alex. Anyway, I kept thinking of a way to get her to follow commands without having to repeat myself like a broken record, and I finally had an epiphany: Food. Josie is very food oriented, so I decided to use food to get her to do what I want. These are the things Josie does with food as an incentive, and surprisingly with repetition even without food as a reward:
- Sits patiently while I get her food ready
- Sits without whining or moving by the door as we get ready to go for our walk
- Goes to bed on command
This may seem insignificant to some pet parents, but to me this is pure joy and success. Josie stays with us about once a month, therefore I am going to continue training her because, yes, Waimaraners are stubborn, but it just means that training with her will take a little longer than with other dogs, but the results are more than worth it.
The brown patch on her face is starting to turn white
Alex, my beautiful girl, is a little over 10 years old and I am so glad that I’ve had her in my life since she was 2 months old. Because I had her since she was a puppy, I can easily see the changes in her behavior and eating habits now she is a senior dog. Here are some of them:
- In the Winter, she prefers to walk after 8:30am and her last walk to be taken by 7pm
- She prefers to have 3 smaller meals rather than 2 big meals
- I believe she lost some of her taste buds, therefore I mix chicken, rice, yogurt, etc., to her kibble to entice her to eat
- She sleeps more than she did before and always looks for her bed
- There are times when we are walking and she walks behind me rather than next to me so I cut the walk short
- She seems to enjoy having her teeth brushed at night time more than when she was a puppy
- She walks slowly
- She still plays, but the sessions are shorter and gentler
One thing, we, pet parents, must keep in mind when our dog is a senior dog and that is that we must adapt to the changes that she will go through in the future and change our routine accordingly. Enjoy your dog companion, but please be aware that a senior dog has limitations so be gentle with her.
Alex and I, this past Winter
Well, it’s been a little over 24 hours since I took Alex to the vet for her vaccines and yearly check-up and she is doing fine. No side effects at all. I always try to schedule her shots for a day I am going to be home just in case she has a bad reaction to the vaccines she was administered by the vet.
I was given instructions on what to be on the lookout for:
- Lethargy – Alex slept a lot the day she got her shots
- Decreased appetite – Alex’s appetite decreased and she did not want to eat breakfast
- Injection site swollen – She had a little bit of swelling
- Anaphylactic shock – Alex did not exhibit any of the following signs: vomiting, diarrhea, seizures, and death
It is really important that you have an eye on your dog 24 hours after vaccination to make sure that she is doing fine and, you’ll be surprised about this suggestion, shorten her walk. I only walked her twice for about 15 minutes rather than our customary 30-40 minute walk twice a day.
In general, just go easy on the activities you have plan for your dog after she gets her shots and remember that she’ll probably not be too hungry, but she should be back to her old self after a day or two. If you have any questions, please contact your vet right away.
Alex, asleep and very tired after our trip to the vet.
Yesterday, I took Alex to get updated on her vaccines and for her yearly check-up and this is the first time in 10 years when she actually was relaxed and not bouncing off the walls like she has done since she was a puppy. Why the behavioral change? Don’t know and quite frankly don’t care either. I was just glad that my face was not as red as the shirt I was wearing because of embarrassment which is customary when I take her to the vet. Believe it or not, I was hoping that the vet would think I was having one of those infamous hot flashes I hear so much about rather than realizing that I was dying of embarrassment because of Alex’s hyper nature.
Anyway, my girl was given a clean bill of health and I’d have to take her back in 3 weeks for a booster shot for Lyme disease. As soon as we got home, she was very thirsty and tired. I gave her some water and she went straight to bed. She woke up later and ended up on the couch right next to me. I sat down to watch TV and I kept touching her. She probably thought, “Mom, please let me sleep.” I think it was more for myself than her for I wanted to reassure myself that she was still with me, safe and sound. Alex is a very healthy girl, but I also know that she is 10 years old so now more than ever I really appreciate the time I have with her.
If you forgot to schedule an appointment to see the vet, please do not delay and get your dog updated on all her vaccines and make sure she gets her yearly check-up. Enjoy your canine companion.