Be the eyes and ears of your golden oldie!
I have a huge soft spot for golden oldie pets. To me, they are often the forgotten ones, the left behind ones. The ones that must make space for a new puppy. These pets have given us their best years, the very least we can do, is look after them when they need us most.
This was a sad week. Two of our regular clients, accidently drove over their elderly pets. One of them is at the vet and in a bad state. The other one, unfortunately did not make it. Rest in peace little soul. This has prompted me to write this article. I can not even count the many pets that have died because of this. It surely is a very tragic accident to happen, but it is also so unnecessary and could have been prevented, most of the times.
When our pets get older, they often loose their hearing and eyesight. They sleep longer and they move slower. They are often plagued with sore joints and stiff muscles. Our pets love sleeping under our vehicles, especially in winter. This in itself is not a problem as they quickly get up and move once they see you get in the vehicle, or when they hear the vehicle start. As they get older, they might not hear the engine start. They might be so fast asleep that they are not even vaguely aware that someone has just opened the door, got in and started up the engine.
We have to think for our pets. If they knew they could get killed or injured while sleeping under a vehicle, they would surely not pick that as a afternoon nap spot. Today they are able to hear the engine start and jump out the way quickly, but tomorrow they might not be. Before you even get in your car, always check behind your wheels and underneath the vehicle. Cats and kittens love sleeping on the inside of bumpers. Some cats even manage to get inside the engine compartment!
Pools and ponds are just as dangerous. Older dogs slip easily, fall in and drown. Make sure that your pets only have access to the swimming pool when you are with them. Accidents really do happen when we least expect it. Puppies mimic adult dogs. They see that adult dogs drink from the pool or pond, and they follow suit. They are still unsteady on their feet, slip, fall and drown.
When people tell me that they accidently drove over their pet, the always say that the pet has always jumped out of the way, until that one day. The worst thing I hear, is when people say,: “If only I had known to look out”. That really breaks my heart for the person that is going through this terrible ordeal, knowing that he caused the death of a beloved pet. Or that the pet was brought up with them having a pool and it was never a problem. But they forgot to keep track of their pet’s age. This is one of the most traumatic experiences for any pet owner.
There is really so much we can do, to make life a little easier for our older pets. In this article I am only concentrating on the dangers of vehicles and pools. Please look out for follow up articles where I will delve into the care of older pets in more detail.
Please, look out for your older pets in potential dangerous situations that used to be normal when they were younger.
Yours in animal love!
Photos are some of our older dogs.