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Caissie Canine Instruction: Do dogs grieve the loss of their human owners?

We begin this week’s “RUFF TAILS” featuring a beautiful German Shepherd named Parker.

Parker is a happy young lady. She celebrated her second birthday in early April. She loves to play tug of war or chase her frisbee. This curious girl will clear all squirrels from the backyard and enjoys a good ear rub.

Parker moved in with her new family in February and has been acclimating well. She loves her new older K9 sister, Mica, and all the adventures they go on together.

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YES, you can teach an old dog new tricks!!! There are many senior dogs, including mature K9 rescues that are placed in new homes every week. In the beginning this can be difficult for a dog to climatize and re-adjust to their new environment. We recommend starting the training process as soon as your senior dog arrives home.

This will ensure immediate results and progress, therefore ensuring many years of excellent long term behaviour modification and obedience.

There are many training techniques and tools that can be implemented to assist with your senior dog to climatize to their new environment and family pack. It is essential to ensure good pack harmony and leadership before your new senior dog settles in.

Part of the process is to make a full assessment of the senior dog to evaluate the toy and food drives. Once determined, you will be able to praise your dog with either their favourite toy or treat.

If a senior dog is not motivated by either, then you will love your K9 with an abundance of verbal praises and physical embraces.

When you establish your new daily K9 routine and training, you will allow your dog to build its trust and bond over the first 3 months.

Once you have this in place, the mature years of your dog, will allow them to experience the best rest of their life.


Welcome to Doggie Dialogue

I know many of us have grieved the loss of a family pet. Have you ever wondered if your pet grieves their human owner? The answer is YES! Dogs can experience grief when their human owners pass away or are no longer present in their lives.

Dogs are social animals and form strong emotional bonds with their owners, often viewing them as members of their own pack.

When a pet loses their human companion, they may exhibit behaviours that suggest mourning, such as a loss of appetite, decrease in activity level and/or lethargy.

Some dogs may become restless, anxious or display excessive licking.

These behaviours can also be associated with an underlying changes or illness, please consult your vet to rule out any medical issues.

No two dogs are alike; therefore, the grieving period can differ. Sadness can be expressed through behavioural changes such as stress and anxiety.

You may notice you dog whining, pacing, or barking excessively. Dogs are highly sensitive and intuitive.

Many dogs grieving will sleep more, while other dogs will experience insomnia.

Dogs have been known to even change the area of the house in which they used to sleep.

It is crucial to give your dog time to grieve and adjust to their new circumstances by providing them with a consistent routine, exercise and plenty of love and attention. Spending more time petting your dog and making eye contact will help your grieving K9.

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