[NSR] Anyone here with old dog experience?
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Veni, Vidi, Posti
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Thu Nov 07, 2019 8:54 am quote
Hi all,

I've had a few dogs over the years and always will. However I have never had one make it to over 15 and we have a 3 1/2 pond yorkie that has. She's in pretty good shape but has lost most of here teeth so the poor girl is having trouble eating. Other than that she seems really, really good for her age and can still bust a move when she really has to. Seeing a 15 year old dog run is something that puts a smile on your face.

Anyway any advice on what to feed her? She will lick the sauce of some of the canned type foods and can eat some of the meat if we cut it small enough. We're also adding bone broth to try and get some nutrition in her. The thing is she still always seems hungry. To further complicate things we have a 3 year old Yorkie so can't just leave food down or you know what will happen.... For a while sous vide eggs worked but now she's bored with that. Is there anything you can think of that dogs find irresistible and is easy to eat with few teeth left?

One fun habit she has added to her arsenal is pawing the dog dish and getting water everywhere. We now put the water bowl on a puppy pad and that seems to at least keep the mess down. Our penthouse is 2 stories inside and she mostly stays downstairs now and can't manage the stairs on here own. Mind you some nights I am up and down the stairs about 20 times as her royal highness requests elevator service. Dogs are awesome and I don't mind caring for her in her old age as she has brought us so much happiness and love. But yeah it can be a challenge. When we got our last dog we figured Sheila would be gone in a year or so and were going to get a miniature dachshund so we'd have 2 dogs roughly the same age. That isn't happening now!

When we retire we plan on having at least old rescue dog to give it a happy end but now we can't really do that. So instead we donate a lot of money to the humane society here that is a non kill shelter. For some reason we also support the donkey sanctuary. That's OK it makes my wife happy and they do have a cute Christmas card.
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Thu Nov 07, 2019 11:35 am quote
I would like to commend you for what you do for fur babies! I make homemade dog food put it in a food proccessor.Meat or chicken veggies, pineapple, and white rice. It all goes in the processor until it' has the consistency of baby food. Add some water before I feed them and it's easily eaten and digested.
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Thu Nov 07, 2019 11:42 am quote
I've been successful with boiling chicken breasts in chicken broth and then pureeing with rice. Be careful about the sodium content in the broth.
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2006 GT
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Location: SW Virginia
Thu Nov 07, 2019 11:47 am quote
PKinDC wrote:
I've been successful with boiling chicken breasts in chicken broth and then pureeing with rice. Be careful about the sodium content in the broth.
PK,j ust an FYI. If you are not making your own chicken broth and buying it instead be careful of what you get. Whether it's chicken, beef, or vegetable broth, they all have one thing in common which is they have onion powder in them which is toxic to dogs. And like you stated they are pretty high in sodium.
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Thu Nov 07, 2019 2:11 pm quote
Kitten food?
A lot of the differences between dog and cat food is the size of the solids and the marketing. We had an older dog that passed 3 years ago and at the end he was quite fond of cat/ kitten canned foods. Smaller pieces and usually more liquid. Easier to eat, swallow and digest.
Veni, Vidi, Posti
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Thu Nov 07, 2019 2:13 pm quote
Thanks for the advice! I know a few others here are dog lovers so hope to see a few more MVers chime in. BTW this is her, took this pic less than a week ago. Pretty good looking for an old girl

IMG_1054.jpeg

Molto Verboso
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Thu Nov 07, 2019 4:50 pm quote
Best I could say would be to put up a kids gate to keep the younger dog from getting to the old dogs food to at least give it a chance. That is how we handle it if we have a strange dog staying with us while their owners are out of town. Maybe if they both get fed at the same time but separated that will encourage the older dog.

Sorry about the following but thinking about dogs got me going and I forgot to stop!

Last dog we had was a twice retired Greyhound. Retired from racing and then got a second job as a service dog for a Vet who had a couple different problems but then the vet's health deteriorate to the point he was in hospital a lot and also had trouble caring for the dog.

We had been caring for Libby when the vet was in-patient and as luck would have it about the same time as this vet was no longer able handle Libby we had to put our Greyhound down due to heath problems so we did not hesitate to take Libby full time.

Then a little over a year ago I took Libby out to the 40X50 foot pen to go potty and like she liked to do she took off to do some hot laps. She ran straight to the opposite corner from the gate and took a fast turn and let out a heart stopping scream. She limped back to me and into the house and we called the Pet ER and they said bring her right in. She limped in the ER and walked right over and climbed on the scales like she knew what was happening.

To make this a little shorter, X-rays showed a broken rear leg from a bad bone due to bad bone cancer. So the decision was that she was never going to get better.

We decided we would wait a while before thinking about adopting another dog. Well after only a few days without one wife made some calls to a contact in the Greyhound adoption group not far from us and learned about a pet adoption Fair a couple hours away. Well we came home with Chad! A two and half year old Grey who was only a couple months off the track and not quite housebroken!

His training has been going pretty good, yep he has the two of us just about fully trained! Some how he managed to train the wife into letting him curl up on the love-seat next to her while watching TV. I actually worked on getting him to sit and once that was done spent a couple weeks trying to get him to shake. I keep grabbing his right paw, once in a while he would start to raise his left. So then I figured out he was a lefty! After that he was good about shaking with left his paw and once he taught me that much a couple days latter he would give me the right if I said right and left for left!
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Thu Nov 07, 2019 5:38 pm quote
We've had dogs that were 17, 16, 14, 13. Right now we have one that's 17. I love old dogs! had to convince my wife that old dogs are the best. I adopt them old, and I don't always get a long time with them, but I have a soft spot for the seniors.

A few things to consider :

*. Go to your vet and get your little friend checked out. It could be a dental issue, or a gum issue in an area where she has no teeth. If her mouth hurts, she won't want to eat. Dealing with my chihuahua who has 8 teeth, and probably 50% of them need to be pulled. I'm worried about anesthesia on a 17? Year old dog, but my vet says leaving it alone is worse than the risk of something while fixing it.

*. Try adding broth to her food and then run it through a food processor to purée it. Consistency can matter a lot to a dog that is particular.

* Scrambled eggs can be a good thing to add to the food. Add some cheese in with it.

*. Try to separate the dogs at feeding time, but in a way that lets them see each other, like a gate. I have a Jack Russel that will gobble her own food and then push the rest of the slow eaters out of their bowls and finish their meals if we let her. My other four actually respect each other's space while eating, until someone walks away from a bowl, then it's an open invitation to finish anything that's left behind.

Pm me if you want any other advice.
Hooked
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Thu Nov 07, 2019 6:20 pm quote
Larrytsg wrote:
*. Try to separate the dogs at feeding time, but in a way that lets them see each other, like a gate. I have a Jack Russel that will gobble her own food and then push the rest of the slow eaters out of their bowls and finish their meals if we let her. My other four actually respect each other's space while eating, until someone walks away from a bowl, then it's an open invitation to finish anything that's left behind.
We have three dogs - all rescue animals. They each have their own feeding spot and bowl. They are fed in order of their pack status to enhance discipline and their eating is observed and managed as stated above.

Ellen, a dachshund-terrier cross rescued from a garbage dump, gobbles her food and has to be stopped from eating the other dogs' food or she puts on weight a lot.
Kodi, a collie-golden retriever cross is the absolute gentleman of the group and the only dog I have noticed who lies down to feed from his bowl (as dogs do when eating a bone.)
Benjy, a scruffy maltese poodle replica is the latest rescue (abandoned in a messy divorce action up the road) and the worst for first wanting to see what everyone else is eating before he tucks in.

This may sound simple, but both my sons each have two dachshunds that will occasionally sleep over for a night or two when they go away. Then we have 5 dogs feeding individually, each in their own dedicated spot. Once we had both pairs over for a long weekend and had seven dogs in the house - and yes, they ALL want to sit next to you on the couch, all the time!

BTW, the dogs are NOT Big Boss in our home. That top position is filled most adequately by Nacho, the black CAT. He has stared down and sorted superior status with each dog individually in turn and therefore in a pack context as well. When things got a little crazy with seven canines running around, Nacho just stared at us disapprovingly ("Really, people?!") before going to his upstairs hobby room to ignore everybody for the rest of the weekend.

Everyone needs a dog/s to adore you and a cat to ignore you... right?
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Thu Nov 07, 2019 7:52 pm quote
The Crusader wrote:
PKinDC wrote:
I've been successful with boiling chicken breasts in chicken broth and then pureeing with rice. Be careful about the sodium content in the broth.
PK,j ust an FYI. If you are not making your own chicken broth and buying it instead be careful of what you get. Whether it's chicken, beef, or vegetable broth, they all have one thing in common which is they have onion powder in them which is toxic to dogs. And like you stated they are pretty high in sodium.
Yes, thanks for the correction! Store bought broth usually does have some form of onion ingredient. I make mine from scratch without onion or salt and store it in the freezer just for the pups when they’re not feeling well. Sorry for not being clear.
Ossessionato
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Fri Nov 08, 2019 4:51 am quote
We feed a food manufactured by Primal. It’s fresh frozen just after harvest. ingredients are real foods, not fillers. Mixed with water, it’s slushy, teeth not needed. Our animal loves it. comes in a variety of flavors. Not too expensive. I defrost two days of food at a time by putting sufficient cubes in a plastic container in the fridge. Defrost in about 8 hours, before the next meal.

Best Miguel
Ossessionato
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Fri Nov 08, 2019 11:32 am quote
When my border collie Maggie got to 19 (she live to a little past 20), she was struggling with a lot of food and we found that Purina Beyond was the softest we could find that she liked. We tried a variety but that was the one she responded too and enjoyed. She ate it without issue and lived an additional year without any problem and passed away last February in her sleep.

The problem here is that finding the right food. It may mean you going to the store and purchasing a lot of different brands to find one that works. Dogs, just like people, can be particular. At this point, you need to focus on comfort.

I know it might not be a popular sentiment but when a dog gets to his or her later years, you may want to quit trying to buy fancy organic stuff or anything special. It's most important they have a healthy appetite. My vet and I discussed it and if Maggie liked Alpo, that's what she would have gotten.

I am not a fan of that stuff but it's like giving whiskey to grandpa. There's a point where keeping that dog happy at end of life is more important than the little difference a "fancier" food might provide.

Best of luck.
Hooked
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Fri Nov 08, 2019 11:59 am quote
Please please please do not seek advice on the internet about this and consult your vet, who has likely treated many similar cases over the years and has a much better wealth of knowledge and experience about how to handle this.

Do NOT feed your dog cat food. The balance of protein, fiber, and nutrients is different, and cat food is much more protein rich than dog food. A diet too rich in protein can cause liver and kidney problems in dogs. If your dog needs softer food, try using a blender on regular dog food.

****If you are worried about leaving food down because your other dog eats it, get a motion sensing pet feeder for your elderly dog. It opens in response to an RF chip on your dog's collar, so that only that dog has access to that food. They work very well and I recommend them to a number of my cat sitting clients that have similar issues with multiple animals on different diets. ****
Ossessionato
1979 P200e
Joined: 18 Mar 2013
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Location: Lock Haven, PA
Fri Nov 08, 2019 6:56 pm quote
Yes!!

You are absolutely right, cat food is NOT formulated for your dog, and consistent snacking from the cat bowl can lead to health issues for your dog.
Veni, Vidi, Posti
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Sat Nov 09, 2019 6:43 am quote
Thanks all for the advice here and I'll try a few of the ideas. At this point as long as she eats were happy. With a toy breed they can lose weight fast and she's maybe 3 1/2 pounds now.
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