Recently, I checked Good Old Dog: Expert Advice for Keeping Your Aging Dog Happy, Healthy, and Comfortable out of the library. Before I get into the review, I have to admit: I’m not convinced that Emmett is getting old. He’s probably 8ish, but he’s busy and spry. But there are signs. Like his muzzle, which I don’t even notice until I’m downloading pics like this off of my camera:
He plays with his brothers, though less than he used to. He goes for walks, though he prefers a stroll over a jog these days. He is exuberant and playful anytime he goes somewhere to “work,” but I’ve noticed that it’s taking him longer to sleep it off afterwards.
He still has a good, long life ahead of him, but I picked up this book because I wanted to get a sense of what the experts are saying about aging.
The bottom line? Our dogs can lead very long, very happy, very healthy lives with good nutrition, exercise, and healthcare.
I highly recommend this book to anyone who’s worried about signs of aging. The authors do a fantastic job outlining – it total layman’s terms – clinical signs and symptoms and what to do about them. They explain common conditions and their treatments. Each chapter starts with a brief blurb about a dog who experienced the condition they’re explaining in that chapter, which helped put yourself in those shoes.
The best bits, to me, were the parts where they explored different, common ailments (vomiting, for example) with a great explanation as to when you should see a vet for those routine things. There was also straightforward, frank discussions about the cost of care and end-of-life decisions.
I can see Good Old Dog becoming a reference that you pull off the shelf each time your older dog experiences or is diagnosed with something new. It’s both practical and reassuring.
Even though Emmett isn’t “old” in my eyes, he is definitely getting older. I took away a lot of valuable information from this book, but all the information that falls under the “things to be aware of” category were the most valuable.
Have you read Good Old Dog? Thoughts? Are there other books about aging that you would recommend?