12 year old springer - worried about change in behaviour

by Ann
(North East)

Hi, I have a 12 yr old male springer. He is a much loved family pet, who has a lovely laid back nature. He is not your typical springer now maybe due to age, as he is laid back and likes the quiet life.


We have been worried about his behaviour for some time. He has started to wake up about 5 am and paces up and down until someone gets up, he spends most of the day pacing. This does not change regardless of how mcuh he is walked or entertained. He also barks at seemingly nothing, which is strange as he never barks (he is deaf so we have always assumed this is why he never barks)

He doesnt seem to be in any pain as his tail is wagging whilst he is pacing. He has been to vets for check up the onluy thing they could find was high amount of protein in his urine sample.

Any suggestions?

From Anna@love-springer-spaniels.com

Hi there
This is similar behaviour that my mums 15 yr old springer displays and we put it down to doggy dementia, he is not all there at times yet other times he is pretty lucid.

If you are really concerned then consult your vet

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Feb 02, 2012
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Change NEW
by: Michele

Ask your Vet about a low dose anti-anxiety medication. This will help Tommy to calm down and will relieve you of the stress you feel as a result of his behavior. Tommy's behavior will likely only worsen at this point, so be sure to ask your Vet about the meds. There is a little information about older dogs at this website, which you might mention to your Vet: http://www.dogsonly.org/OlderDogs.html

You might also check into some massage treatment for him. Something you can easily do yourself at home and helps them to relax. Do an internet search for Canine Massage.

Feb 02, 2012
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Doggy Dementia NEW
by: Diane

Hi all, my lovely 12 year old male spaniel called Tommy is really starting to worry me with his demanding and odd behaviour ! he has always been a really good obedient and loving dog and has always been very much the centre of our family, so this change in his behaviour is really starting to stress me ! He has always loved the car and would sleep in the car for hours and hours and quite happy to stay there! It has got to the stage now where we cannot hardly get him to come into the house, he seems to always want to go to the car! I have tried everthing from putting his bed in the corner so his back is against the wall to letting him on the sofa and try to calm him with cuddles, but nothing he works he constantly wants out of the room and then we we let him out he goes up stairs ans we here him for ages going from room to room. I have taken him to the vets and they have sid he has doggy dementia but I dont know what else I can do to try and calm him down. He only seems happy in the car! he now has to stay with us in his bed in our bedroom at night as this is the only time he seems to relax is when we are in bed just about to go to sleep. It's awful because we cant have him in the same room as us now when we watch tv and he constantly pants and walk around ! Can anyone help ? We just dont know what to do with him as he wont even allow me to go upstairs he follows me everywhere! I am so concerned that I am not doing the right thing for him ...even as I am typing this he wont relax and is watching me and the minute I get upo he will start pacing and panting ! Please can anyone advise what I can do ????

Aug 29, 2011
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ccd
by: Anonymous

check with you vet about canine cognitive disorder. there may be some meds that could help, but (my understanding is) it basically like Alzheimer in dogs.

Aug 29, 2011
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senior springer
by: Anonymous

regular vet checks,lots of love patience and cuddles and enjoy the remaining years xxxx

Aug 26, 2011
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older springer
by: Anonymous

My Millie girl had a whole change in personality in the last 2 to 3 years of life. The Vet said it was normal and part of getting older. She would pace and would bark sometimes for no reason at all, just out of the blue. She also realized she could pretty much do what she wanted and we were never going to punish her. My girl became more demanding, things she would never have pulled years earlier. We always said she had selective hearing at the end of her life. She could hear you open a bag, but tell her to stop something she was doing and she was deaf. With age comes strange behavior, a little doggie demengia, a little pain in the joints, and alot of sleeping. My Millie slept alot the last few months of her life. Good luck and enjoy your beloved friend and make it as comfortable as you can for them. You may have to baby proof the house for their safety too.

Aug 26, 2011
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Behavior
by: Michele

I'm going thru some similar changes with my 12 year old female Springer. She'll be 13 in October. I have noticed that she doesn't hear well, though at first I thought she was just ignoring me! I've also noticed that she really pays attention to what has been her regular routine her entire life. When her mealtime comes around she's starts whining and pacing around. If you don't get her food right away she'll start pawing at you. She's always been a chow hound, and still is, but she'd always just wait until someone got her food. She also sleeps much harder and longer and we have to be careful to make sure she is fully awake before we try to interact with her. It takes her a couple of minutes to focus after waking up. We speak to her in a low voice and very gently touch her until she's up and about. Because she doesn't hear much now we touch her several times a day just to reassure her.

Your dog is going thru the normal aging process, just as we do. The pacing is likely due to a little anxiety on his part and could certainly be due to dementia. I would talk to my Vet about this. There are very low dose anti-anxiety medications that would likely be very helpful to him.

It's difficult watching our beloved pets age and we want to do everything we can to help them with that. Hopefully one day someone will care enough about us to do the same!

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