Life With an Old Dog

11 Sep

Meg is 15. She hears very little any more. Her eyesight is failing. She suffers periodic bouts of cognitive dysfunction (doggie dementia). Her legs are getting weaker and weaker. While she still enjoys our daily walks, she’s been moving slower and slower.

Meg

Meg

As I’m sure you can imagine, this requires special treatment. But Meg is a special dog, and she doesn’t make it easy.

She has always been very stubborn and headstrong. She’s the sort of dog that will ignore an invisible fence when it suits her, gritting her teeth and taking the shock so she can go where and when she wants to go. (Don’t worry, we no longer use an invisible fence.)

She doesn’t like to be told that she has to stay in a room (even with company) or can’t use the steps. Put a gate at the top or bottom of the steps and she will do everything she can to tear it down. Close a door to keep her in a room and she will scratch at the door, snort, huff and puff, whine, etc.

Meg has good days and bad days. But she still has a healthy appetite. Although she sleeps a lot, she still enjoys our company. She’s always happy to greet us, enjoys her slow walks, loves greeting people on said walks, enjoys her daily treats, etc.

We just watch her closely and take things one day at a time.

We have hardwood floors in most rooms, which can be slippery, so we have rugs everywhere. Even on the steps, in a special pattern that looks weird, but works for Meg. When she uses them.

You see, Meg enjoys laying on smooth surfaces. I guess because they’re cooler, as in temperature. No as in, “Look at how cool I am on this wood floor.”

She especially loves sleeping on the ceramic tile in our bathroom. But it’s slippery. And sometimes, she can’t get up.

Around 3:00 AM on Wednesday morning, I awoke to this odd, rhythmic sound. Swoosh, swoosh, swoosh, bump, thunk. Swoosh, swoosh, swoosh, bump, thunk.

It took a while for my brain to register the fact that Meg was stuck somewhere. I stumbled into the bathroom to find Meg splayed out in the middle of the bathroom floor, trying to get up. The swooshing was her feet on the floor. The bump was her foot hitting the tub. The thunk was her ID tag hitting the floor. Behind Meg was a pile of poop.

She looked embarrassed. Poor thing. I don’t know if she was trying to get up because she had to poop, or was so freaked out by not being able to get up, that it scared the crap out of her.

She was quite relieved when I helped her up.

It wasn’t a runny “I’m sick” sort of event, so it was easy to clean up and flush away.

What wasn’t easy was going back to bed after all that. So we went downstairs. That’s when I shot the picture shared above.

Doesn’t it look like she’s thinking, “Sorry, Mama”?

Don’t worry, though. She’s fine.

Just old, and achy.

She’d probably be mortified to know I shared her dirty little secret with the world.

But it’s just part of life with an old dog.

IMG_7632

One of my favorite pics of Meg from a few years back.

14 thoughts on “Life With an Old Dog

  1. Old dogs are the best dogs. Folks make such fuss over puppies, and most of them may never have taken the time to appreciate the wonders of dogs as seniors. The most beautiful dog face is the expressive face that has grown white with age.

    Sweet, stubborn Meg.

    • It’s sad. I know that I’ll know when it’s “time.” So far, so good. Last night, she was keeping pace with the younguns toward the end of our walk. Takes her a while to get warmed up. LOL.

  2. Poor Meg. We’ll all be there someday. We can only hope we have someone as loving as you to be there to take care of us. Meg is lucky she has you – and you her.

  3. Kathy – that brought back memories of my Bentley who has been gone now 5 years………. I love hearing about Meg – give her a hug and a kiss for me!

  4. Poor pooch. It’s so tough to see dear friends succumb to the cruel whims of age. Give her an extra ear-scratch for me.

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