In animal sanctuaries there are dogs of all shapes and sizes… and some of them are very old. Milo was, until recently, one such dog. It’s hard for sanctuaries to find homes for dogs like Milo; they are often ill or needy and require a lot of attention and patience. Additionally, many people worry that it will be too sad to befriend an animal who has only a few months left to live. At Ethical Pets, we have cared for a dog like this before, called Beth: we found living with her a wonderful and fulfilling experience, so we have decided to do it again! This time, we are keeping a blog in the hope that maybe others will consider adopting their own little Beth or Milo one day. So, here it is: our record of Milo’s Last Miles.
Milo has been living with us for nearly two months now, and is doing very well. Our primary concerns were his food and his mood – both of which have improved well. His latest favourite is Gnocchi with tomato sauce, and also, he really likes chewing the ends from butter nut squash. He will try almost anything once – including, we learned this evening, orange ice lolly!
The problem with having two other, younger and more lively dogs, is that Milo is quite shy and tends not to come and seek attention (unless there are crisps at stake). He tends to just “switch off” if nothing is happening, and will opt for spending time on his own unless we actively go and bring him into the fold. He seems happy enough, but we want to try and encourage him to be more social.
So, this week we have made an active effort to spend a few hours each evening with him, and to bring him back into the room again if he wanders off. He seems to be really enjoying himself, especially when he gets to sit on the sofa and survey the room from on high (after all, usually, with those little legs, he cant survey very much!)
He also had a massage this evening with the Calming Soothing Massage Oil, which he adored, as did Shep, and we all had a little nap together to end our evening!
Attention is definatley a point where looking after a very old dog is a bit different. Because he is a little bit senile, it simply doesn’t occur to him to come and ask for love if he feels lonely. We are going to make sure he doesn’t need to remember to ask for love – we will make sure he gets it anyway. As long as he doesn’t steal my ice lollies!