Wednesday, April 22, 2015

30 Days - Day 12

The Sunset Years.

Ansa, my dog is old. She's at the stage where one minute she astounds me with her agility and the next she's enfeebled.

I try and deal with situations as they come up. She's the most intelligent of all the dogs I've had. I've now taught her the meaning of "slow" and she comes down the stairs slowly, she's worked out a way of two paws together on each step. But up the stairs? The other night was scary as she only made it halfway up and I had to slide by her to push her the rest of the way. She's a heavy dog so she can't be carried.

She won't ever go ahead of me as I've trained her not to - even through a doorway. It's the only way to get a dog to trust its owner, they have to respect the lead position of "the pack leader" to obey commands consistently.

One time she'll bounce around the meadow like a puppy, next she can't make it on a jump to the back seat of the car. It would break your heart to see her try. She never gives up. I took a portable step stool out of the house as an assist but she completely ignores it and manoeuvres her way around it, thus making her leap more challenging. Funny but... *sigh*.

She finds it difficult to get up sometimes. So there are mats all over the house to help her. She often reminds me of Daughter's dog, Shamrock, who did the same thing: she'll lie down in the most awkward places now. The top of the stairs, outside a closed door, along the outside of the bathtub, on the mat in front of the kitchen sink. As she is getting quite deaf as well I wind up roaring at her to move before I pitch myself into a mess of twisted broken limbs.

She always walks without a leash, though I carry one with me. She's allowed a few feet ahead of me so I can watch her and has the command "stop" and "sit" down pat. Out on our walk this evening she was ahead as always and a truck was coming and I realized, to my horror, that, yeah, she's deaf, and can't hear me commanding her not to move until the truck passes. My heart was in my throat.

Leashless walks are now a thing of the past.

Sunset accommodations.

I need them too.


  1. My sister found that when she returned from collecting the washing, picking the dinner veg etc., she removed her 'garden' jacket and placed it on the floor out of danger and where the dog could still see her, Cariosa would immediatly go and lie down there and watch or sleep contentedly. Sleeping quarters moved to ground level for the duration.

  2. My Callie
    as rescue dog
    my constant companion
    but does not let me walk ahead.
    Took several years for her to bond
    as her owners had her tied to a tree,
    left town and when I saw her at the shelter
    they had to cut the chain off her neck
    with a saw....

  3. GM:
    I could never leave Ansa downstairs by herself as she cries like a human. Heartbreaking, I may have to sleep on the sofa at some point :(

  4. Oh my OWJ, my Ansa a rescue too, tied up for years never walked but not abused otherwise apart from just bread to eat and her skin so dry it flaked when she walked. Took me 2 years before she bonded :(
    They are so dear.

  5. I left you a comment this morning but it didn't "stick" dammit! Just to say my old gal Jenna looks just like your Ansa, gambols like a calf sometimes and other times seems stiff and sore and limpy. I give her a chunk of wiener with a bit of Aspirin pushed into it each day to help her out if she has any pain. I think she's 13 if not older.

  6. I wonder if she would benefit from beta blockers. I'd ask the vet.

  7. I am old too. I too am at the stage where one minute I am agile and the next totally bushed and enfeebled. I wonder what Ranjan would make out of that statement!

  8. Ansa is such a love, her face stayed with me as I walked my daughter's dog last week. I call her my "granddog" as she and I are good buddies. They change our lives in ways they will never know.


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