Dog Dementia | Canine Cognitive Dysfunction | Canine Alzheimer's

Like human beings, dogs also suffer from Senile Dementia as they grow older. The most common causes of dog dementia are Cognitive Dysfunction Syndrome or CDS and Canine Alzheimer’s Disease, which can be quite common among dogs of advanced age. And like senility among people, dog dementia can be very difficult to cope with. However, given the right measures, the effects of this disease may be mitigated and thus make life for both the owner and his dog a little bit easier.

The first thing that needs to be done is to recognize the problem. Among the first signs of senility in a dog are sudden bouts of confusion and staring off into the distance. If the owner recognizes these signs then he or she will be in a much better position to be patient with the dog, and as the problem worsens, the need for a patient, caring attitude will only become more important.

For example, a dog may have trouble remembering where its bowl is and may end even more confused than before. To remedy this problem, the owner will need to accompany the dog to the bowl and see how well it does. In some severe cases, the dog cannot even remember whether it has eaten or not, despite having done it only minutes ago. As a result, the dog may demand to eat or drink more than what is healthy, which can only lead to even more dog health problems.

In addition to feeding, there is also the problem of the dog having trouble figuring out where the toilet is, not to mention figure out whether or not it’s time to go. And since, dog dementia leads to repetitive action, it goes without saying that the owner will need to help his or her dog with its toiletry, otherwise things can get messy.

Aside from confusion, it’s entirely possible that the dog may become overly aggressive or irritable because of dementia. This is particularly true in cases wherein the dog is confused and has forgotten who its owners are. Because of this, it’s best not to expose the dog in potentially tense situations, such car rides or places with loud noises, as that may only heighten its confusion. And although this ultimately means missing out on the fun activities which you used to do together, it’s also important to remember that dogs who are suffering dog dementia have special needs also.

And lastly, you should consider how dog dementia can influence your dog’s sleeping patterns. It’s entirely possible for the dog to begin sleeping at irregular hours and to begin following unpredictable and erratic schedules.

This can result in a number of errant behaviors, not the least of which are whining, howling and/or barking. So if you’re dog seems to be doing a lot of these then it’s possible that it’s suffering from dog dementia. Sometimes, the dog may even try to go out for a walk in the middle of the night.

At any rate, dog dementia has no cure. That’s the truth. There may be some supplements available to help him sleep or to help with nutrition, but at the end of the day, dealing with dog dementia is something which an owner may have to face up to on a 24 hour basis.

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Kennel Cough in Dogs

Being a dog owner seems to come with certain responsibilities. Among the most difficult of these is detecting certain diseases which your dog contract in the course of its life. One of the most common dog illnesses which you need to look out for is Kennel Cough. Because this illness is very contagious, you will need to isolate the infected dog from any other pets that you may have.

Kennel Cough can affect any number of animals, including rabbits, cats, hamsters, and all sorts of other mammals. They can be infected by your dog and vice versa, which is why you need to isolate infected pets, otherwise they will end up infecting other animals they come in contact with.

Aside from isolating your dog, you should also consider washing any blankets that he may have used so that the disease doesn’t spread to furniture. This also applies to your dog’s feeding bowls, chew toys or sleeping baskets.

One of the main characteristics of Kennel Cough in Dogs is that it spreads via air-borne bacteria. This is particularly true in an enclosed environment. Places like Kennels, parks and dog pounds are all places where Kennel Cough bacteria can thrive.

Kennel Cough symptoms generally manifest within a week. At this point, the dog will begin coughing like it has something stuck inside its throat. However, the dog will not become feverish quite yet. The dog may cough up a lot of phlegm after several rounds of cough.
If the Kennel Cough is not serious, the color of the phlegm will be light, and the disease will only last about a week or so. On the other hand, if the symptoms were to last longer than 3 weeks and the phlegm has a dark color then he will need to be brought to the vet, otherwise the infection will become increasingly more fatal to dog health.

Healthy dogs have better chances at resisting the disease and expelling it from their system very quickly. In other words, the best way to fight Kennel cough is to keep your dog healthy with a good diet and plenty of exercise. In the event that your dog does develop kennel cough, you can always try good old fashion natural remedies. If that doesn’t work then veterinary medication is always an option.

The best way to prevent Kennel Cough in dogs is to build up its immune system. The most common preventive vaccine for Kennel Cough is the bordatella vaccine. However, this vaccine may cause a lot of unpredictable effects in your dog health, including debility, vomiting, hives, or even death.

Despite vaccines however, it is possible to use natural pet remedies to prevent the kennel cough, most of which you can create with ordinary ingredients that you may have around your house. Doing so, will allow you to take of your dog’s Kennel Cough without resorting to medication.

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Lyme Disease in Dogs

One of the most serious illnesses your dog may get is the Lyme Disease. The most common causes of this illness are fleas and ticks, which also causes skin irritation in many different animals. Their nuisance aside, the real danger to your dog's health from these pests is that they are blood feeders, and as many people know, most blood feeders act as carriers of Heartworm and Lyme Disease.

However, Lyme Disease is not exclusive to dogs. Cats and many other mammals may also get this disease. Microorganisms such mites, chiggers and fungi’s can also carry these diseases as well as canine mange and various skin related diseases.

Now, the symptoms of Lyme Disease in Dogs are pretty consistent among different types of dogs. Its common symptoms include swollen joints, fevers, poor appetite, weariness, vomiting and fur falling off the dog’s body.

The scary thing about Lyme Disease in Dogs is that they may spread to humans. And although people are generally less susceptible to the disease than dogs, it is worth remembering that this disease may be transmitted through the bite of a deer tick. So everybody is at risk. Those who have been infected by this illness may suffer from a number of symptoms, including fatigue, fever, headaches, muscle pain, joint pain, swollen lymph nodes and skin rashes.

There’s good news though. Almost two decades ago, in the early nineties, the USDA has licensed a vaccine which can render dogs immune from Lyme Disease. So if your dog is a bit on the hyper-active side, and enjoys exposing himself to nature and the elements, you should consider getting him vaccinated for Lyme disease.

Of course, if your dog hasn’t been vaccinated then you may want to watch out for the symptoms mentioned here. And if the illness becomes worse over time, don’t be afraid to bring your dog to the vet. Remember that Lyme disease is transmitted via pests and parasites and it is quite possible for your dog to get other illnesses as well.

With early treatment however, coupled with antibiotics, the progress of Dog Lyme Disease may be halted before it can cause any serious damage to your dog health. Still, prevention is better than a cure. Although vaccination is a good insurance policy, the best way to keep your dog from getting infected is to keep him away from tick-infected areas or at least, remove those ticks which have managed hitch a ride on your dog’s fur. Of course, as a last resort, you can always try using chemicals to clear away any ticks which may be present in your yard or your house.  

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