Do you believe that dogs teach us by example вЂ“ UNCONDITIONAL LOVE? - - Training Dogs
Let me tell you a storyвЂ¦вЂ¦Do you believe that dogs teach us by example вЂ“ UNCONDITIONAL LOVE?
Have you noticed odd behaviors in your dog that you canвЂ™t explain? Do dogs get Dementia? When I was in grade school, we had a poodle named вЂњPompadorвЂќ or вЂњPompyвЂќ for short. I, unlike my brother wasnвЂ™t bornВ when she became a part of our household, but I do remember her clearly. I can remember when she placed in AKC Dog Shows orВ ran and played, chased after balls, but mostly I remember she knew when my dad was going to walk through that door into the house and she just watched still as a mannequin till he did. I also remember when the veterinarian told us she was going blind, then a year or so later when she was going deaf. We lived in a second floor apartment when I was in 4th grade. I can remember my dad gently carrying вЂњPompyвЂќ up and down the stairs so many times to вЂќ go pottyвЂќ. Unfortunately I didnвЂ™t understand the circles she walked in all the time, or her standing in the corner looking at something I just couldnвЂ™t figure out, even just staring out into space. If you petted her she just laid her head in your lap or vocalized. By then she was about 19, God finally took her to heaven a few years later. В My parentsВ thought that meant her time was up but they also thought that it was fabulous, she lived to a ripe old age.
Do any of these things sound familiar?
- They may stand head-first in a corner or at the hinge side of a door, waiting for it to open or standing helplessly; unable to figure out the next step.
- The loss of вЂњpurposeful activityвЂќ вЂ” pacing and wandering around the house, often anxious..
- They may forget about going outside to do their business as they always used to. A medical problem вЂ“ urinary tract infection, gastrointestinal problems вЂ“ must always be ruled out first before assuming it is a behavioral (dementia) problem.
- They may not be aware that they are вЂ�leaking,вЂ™ or may purposely seek out places to void in the house, unaware that this is not normal behavior.
- Often they will no longer greets family members upon arrival.
- Or may вЂњforgetвЂќ to eat or lose interest in food.
- They may sleep more than normal, or have night and day reversed; sleeping in the day and awake or confused at night.
- Often the dog cannot process the command and act on it as before. They may even be confused about his or her name when called.
- Communication and language
- Ability to focus and pay attention
- Reasoning and judgment
- Visual perception
People with dementia may have problems with short-term memory, keeping track of a purse or wallet, paying bills, planning and preparing meals, remembering appointments or traveling out of the neighborhood. Does this mean we Euthanize orВ just ignore them or the symptoms? NO IT DOES NOT. There are many organizations, doctors and support groups to help families that have been blessed with a loved one with any or all of these symptoms. Please check this out if it applies to someone you know and love.
I truly believe God made dogs to teach us by example the meaning ofВ вЂ“ UNCONDITIONAL LOVEвЂ¦вЂ¦
IMPORTANT вЂ“ there are many other conditions that can cause these symptomsВ in both dogs and people, including some that are reversible, such as thyroid problems and vitamin deficiencies, so please take care of your loved ones, person or dog. See a doctor to find out what treatments are available to manage the symptoms, cure the problem, take away the pain or help them live longer. Quality of life does not in any way diminish your responsibility to treat a problem or maintain yearly check ups and vaccines on your dog.
I tell this story because it has formed my beliefs in QUALITY OF LIFE, both in dogs and people.В Back then I had never heard the term Dementia or Euthanasia. I was into swimming and school. I was also an impressionable child, not an adult. As for me and my dogs, today,В I PLEDGE TO DO THE LAST LOVING THING I CAN, MAKE THE HARDEST DECISION I CAN, TO END THEIR SUFFERING AND ALLOW THEM TO DIE WITH DIGNITY. I will meet them at the rainbow bridge.
And as for theВ human loved ones in my life, whether they suffer from these symptoms or other ones,В I PLEDGE TO DO ALL THAT I CAN TO MAKE THEIR LIFE AS MEANINGFUL AND AS DIGNIFIED AS HUMANLY POSSIBLE.
Do you believe that God made dogs to teach us by example the meaning of вЂ“ UNCONDITIONAL LOVE?
- What I have learned about health and happiness from my dog.
- Voices of persons with dementia
- The Last Great Lesson