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I think my dog has dementia

Feeling sad as my poor old dog is not a happy bunny. She is about 12 years old and is beginning to show signs of age. The vet says she is just going a bit senile. Despite regular trips to the garden she messes in the house, whines constantly although doesn’t appear to be in any sort of pain and has started getting a bit aggressive even with people she knows well. She paces around the house aimlessly and when she goes in the garden just stands and stares before wanting to come back in like she doesn’t really know why she is there. Apparently all signs of canine cognitive dysfunction (the equivalent of alzheimers). I love her to bits but not sure what the future holds for her - has anyone else experienced dementia in dogs, does it get worse. Its hard to know if she is suffering as she still enjoys her walks (albeit short ones) and a good snuggle.

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(hugs) Sorry to hear that, it must be very upsetting for you.

Sorry to hear about your dog Roz :cry:
My Mums cat started to behave exactly the same in his later years. It was very upsetting.

Big hugs

Karen x

My mum has just lost her dog he had dementia, it had a sister and she had to foster her out because he was not very happy when she was around.
He was diagnosed two years ago, he turned very quiet but loved his walks, was not allowed of the lead in case he got lost, they coped with the mess in a house it was just like a small child, but they loved him to bits, he was in no pain only in the last few days, he was on medication from the vet, and later in his illness he would not recognise anyone it was very sad. Mum is in her eighties and would not of coped if he was in pain but she was told he was not so that helped.

This happened to both my jack russell terriers’s but both were slightly different and we were able to adjust.

Nimoy used to get confused where he was and have those standing glazed eyed moments, and be unreponsive or senior moments as our vet referred to them as. He wasn’t able to go off lead as he’d follow anyone thinking it was us. Most of the time he was fine, he didn’t get aggressive just extra cuddly with people. He was 18.5 years old when he died.

Weber well he couldn’t be left alone for more than 5 minutes as he’d get scared and bark continually so he had to go everywhere with us if no one was going to be in the house. He spent the weekend at my mothers once and got out. We found him at the local police station where he’d been kenneled overnight with the large police dogs. He didn’t recognise us until I called his name.

We found with both of them we had to keep their routine very strict and as that helped that include the time and the route of their little walks. Lots of talking gently to them and lots of strokes, cuddles.

We did get the occasional wet puddle next to the back door where they’d wonder off to go but have left it too late and not got outside in time. We had a cut off’s from the carpet in the loft so we used them by the back door just in case. We did find if we took them into the garden every couple of hours the little puddle accidents stopped. We’d always used the term, ‘go do doggie tolite’ since they were puppies and they seemed to still recognise this but we’d have to make sure we stroked their backs first as this helped them to reconnect if they’d were having one of those confused where am I moments.

Thankfully both of them loved to be cuddled and they just liked more and more cuddles. I think the contact helped to make them feel safe.

Weber died at 14.5years old he just cuddle up in his bed and died in his sleep.

Thanks for your replies - you have put my mind at rest - a bit! I can cope with the mess and give her lots of love and understanding as long as I know she isn’t suffering. I have been walking her on the lead for quite a while now as she had a habit of heading for home when she had had enough which was fine except that with another dog to think about I couldn’t always follow her! I do worry how she will cope when (if?!) I move house later this year and her surroundings change but I will have to deal with that when it happens.

My boy’s just turned 13 and we’re wondering if he has early signs of dementia too. He is much more demanding, to the point of bossiness, and very clingy.

With regard to incontinence, number 2s are much easier to deal with than number 1s. My old labrador used to poo in her bed but I was able to clean it up quite easily for many months, it was when she couldn’t keep on her feet to wee that we sadly had to have her pts.

Old age is very sad be it in dogs or humans.

If you are moving I would suggest keeping all his favourite toys and bedding don’t be tempted to wash it before moving into the new house or washing it for the first couple of months. His smell will be all over it and that will be something he’ll recognise and feel safe with.

I would take him around the house with you so he gets used to the lay out and can get your sent around the new house as it will all smell very new to him at first. So will be unfamiliar both in site, sound and smell.
At least you’ll have your funiture and his bedding to help.