The Weekly Dachshund: Old dogs CAN learn new tricks…

Sorry this week’s installment of the weekly Dachshund was delayed, sometimes regular columns get bumped for current issues. Here is the second week’s “The Weekly Dachshund” which normally runs on Wednesday’s

Good morning, or good afternoon, or perhaps it should be good evening where you are, whatever time of day it is for you I hope your day was or will be a good one.

Ambassador Yoda is not sure he likes his new “pants.”

Very shortly I will be heading out with the Ambassador and his aide for a walk on the beach. Now for most people this would just be a leisure activity, but for Yoda life is always a training session. I already know how our walk will go. We will head towards the beach by going through the downtown business area. Yoda will greet every human we pass with a wag of his tail. Chester will bark his ass off at humans. So our trip through downtown will consist of me correcting Chester’s barking, so that Yoda can greet and be fussed over by every human he meets.

By the time we get to the beachfront Chester will have calmed down and will now ignore everything that passes him by and enjoy the weather. Yoda will now bark at every dog he sees. This portion of the walk will consist of my correcting Yoda’s bad behavior so that Chester can meet and greet new canine pals.

Chester is captured sneaking onto Dad’s shoulder.

That’s right, the Ambassador and his aide have opposite problems! Chester has a fear of strange humans, and Yoda has a fear of strange dogs. This is why walking them together makes so much sense! Chester is slowly teaching Yoda that other dogs can be his friends, and Yoda is slowly teaching Chester that most people aren’t so bad. Who says old dogs can’t learn new tricks?

Yes I said old dogs, Ambassador Yoda is nine, and his Ambassadorial Aide Chester is fourteen. They are both seniors. Together they are Seniors 4 Seniors! Both came to me as seniors, and I wouldn’t have it any other way. Sure they have their issues, but those issues were created by us humans, it is not their fault. Nor is it Chester’s fault that sometimes he pees in his sleep, he’s old, body parts don’t always work right when you get old, old happens to us all. There are ways to deal with old.

As I said they both came to me as seniors, but boy what seniors they are! Yoda is full of energy and loves to play, especially in the mornings. Chester, older than Yoda is not so active in the boisterous play department, but he loves to curl up beside you and have his belly rubbed! Both are special needs dogs, but that doesn’t really make their care any more difficult than a dog without special needs. Their special need is belly bands. Chester needs one because he is losing bladder control, Yoda needs one because he was never taught the difference between indoors and out. While the use of belly bands means they get more baths than the average dog, there really isn’t much more difference than that.

I know that many people overlook senior dogs, they think they won’t live long enough, or that they can’t be taught to change their ways. Old dogs can learn new tricks, it just takes a little patience and persistence. As for a senior dog not living long enough, look at it this way, even if they don’t have much time left, there is a lot of love left to give in the time they do have. You will also have the satisfaction of knowing that YOU gave them love in their last days, and they did not leave us without ever knowing it!

I love my seniors, and when they go I will miss them deeply, but we don’t think about that! We make the most of every day we have together, and when their time does come, we will have the peace of knowing that they knew that they were deeply loved!

So the next time you consider adopting a dog, or a pestery cat, consider a senior. They need love too!

Until Next Time Remember,