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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I really hope to hear from people with Maltese around Sir N's age or older.

What kind of senior issues should I be aware of?

What should I be keeping an eye on?

How do I know when the walks are starting to be too long/difficult for him?
 

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Lady was 10 this year, so Sir N's just a kid by comparision!

If he's always been healthy, I would expect him to stay that way. Lady's got a ton of health issues, but she is actually feeling better now than she was at 8 since we have figured out how to maintain them.

As far as geriatric care, I like to do more frequent blood panels to to keep on top of anything that might be going on. Teeth cleaning seems to have to be done more often as they age, too. You also might want to double check with your vet about food. My vet had me switch Petie to a senior food at about that age, one that was lower in protein and fat.

Other than that, you and Sir N should really enjoy these senior years! I have been fortunate that most of my pets live long, long lives (I had one cat for 20 years!) and I find I enjoyed them most those last few years and they became even more special to me.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I did try to switch Sir N to a senior food earlier this year, but he hated it. Little C kept gobbling it up and I didn't want HER eating it. (She's not even two.)

He's really big on treats and eats more treats than food. Treats include raw tofu, apple, raw carrot, raw spinach, plain popcorn (not as much popcorn as other stuff like tofu), raw pumpkin, and the occasional dried blueberry.

I think that his teeth are beyond nasty, but the vet says that they are really good considering his age. I give him a greenie (the nylabone brand is the only kind available where I live) once a week and he's nuts about the science diet t/d formula. I let him eat that maybe three times a week.

He has been extremely healthy his whole life. He had a luxating patella on one knee, but that was due to an injury because he was so active. Earlier this year, when Little C was having blood work done before getting her knee surgeries, I had his done up as well. Should I be doing that again now? How often would you recommend? I earn decent money, have no debt, and Little C and Sir N are my only dependents, so money is not a concern of mine. I can easily pay for anything that either of them needs. I'd rather err on the side of caution when it comes to them, no matter the cost. (Health-wise, that is...I'm stingy when it comes to things like carriers, clothes, etc.)

Diabetes scares me, frankly. Is it common for dogs to develop diabetes as they get older? I ask because I figure that you are the spoiled maltese expert on diabetes.


And yes, Sir N and I ARE enjoying our senior years. (According to my kindy kids, at 30, I belong in this category as well.) Now that he has gotten over the huge insult of Little C getting added to the family, he has returned to his old, sweet, affectionate self. I enjoy Little C's energy and the wildness she has at times, but I also really enjoy Sir N's calmness, relaxed attitude, and more easygoing nature. He just keeps getting more and more mellow. Taking a nap with him is almost like meditating. :D


Oh, and this "If he's always been healthy, I would expect him to stay that way." is a HUGE relief to me! Thanks! :D :D
 

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I think if Sir N's been extremely healthy all his life except for a luxating patella, you can just sit back and relax and enjoy those senior years! Maltese can live 15 years or so, you you may have another 8 years left to enjoy him!

As far as diabetes goes, I wouldn't worry about that either. Lady is a genetic disaster, a pet shop/puppy mill dog so she is one big ticking time bomb for a bunch of the inherited problems Maltese are prone to. Just like with humans, heredity and obesity are the #2 reasons for diabetes. I'm sure Lady got the gene, and then when I gave her too many treats when I first adopted her and she got chubby (well, fat!), she became diabetic.

In our case, even diabetes hasn't been that big of a deal once I got brave enough to learn how to test her blood myself. We will be starting our 5th year with diabetes right after the first of the year and she's doing great, still has 20/20 vision and everything! I'm so used to giving insulin shots twice a day and sticking to the schedule, it's automatic now.
 

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My foster, Daisy, will soon be twelve. She was in very poor shape when she arrived a couple of months ago. But a good diet, proper exercise and Syn-Flex has made her young again.

As far as walks. I walk Daisy as long as she likes. Sometimes it's just a block and back. Sometimes we walk all over town. Excercise is very important, and unlike the other four, who rip around the house like there's no tomorrow, Daisy doesn't get much excercise in the house. So we walk two or three times a day.

For her arthritis, a result of luxating patellas. And just for her all around old joints, my vet recommended Syn-Flex. It's $29 for a six month supply. This has been a miracle for my girl. It comes in liquid form, and easy to give once a day. I highly recommend it. You can order it on-line at http://www.synflexamerica.com/pet

I also enjoy the company of a senior dog. My Daisy is an absolute angel, and if I were adopting, I would take her over a puppy any day of the week


Here's an updated pic of the Old Girl:
 

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Daisy is beautiful!

I, too, enjoy the company of senior dogs and cats. I think that especially if they are rescues like yours and mine are, they have a certain wisdom. They've been there, done too much in many cases, so they really appreciate being loved.

Yeah, I can resist a puppy face, but I'm a sucker for an adult in need of a home.
 

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Alex was 8 last May. He still acts like a puppy sometimes. We don't go for walks because he gets enough exercise in the house and he is not overweight. They will let you know if they had enough of the walking. They will just sit down and wait that you carry them. One thing to watch are the teeths. They need more cleaning when they get older. My vet even recommends twice a year. He too had surgery on one of his legs and is doing great, still jumping up and down. He is on Chondro Flex but will switch him to Flexicose when the bottle of pills is empty. A liquid form is better then pills, it's better assimilated by the body. Flexicose is glucosamine/chondroitin with MSM and comes in liquid form.
Since Alex had a bout with thrombocetopenia last year, I am watching this carefully. And have nothing done if his platelet count is not normal. It was idiopathic and might not return. But I will be watching anyway.
 

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I know they say around that age dogs are seniors, but I never thought that way with Holli, and she lived health-ily until 14
At 13 people would not believe it when I told her age.

Her teeth werent the greatest either, and I also did give her a joint supplement but not until she was like, 12 or so, when it seemed like she started to get wobbly. Oh and she never walked far. She went for walks every night and every walk she wanted held at about the same place, half way through :D She preferred to ride


-- Daisy is gorgeous
You guys get me all mushy at work all the time. Its so wonderful what you folks do for these rescues.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Lady's Mom, what worries me is that Sir N could very well have been the result of a backyard breeder/puppy mill type situation. I just don't know. I don't know very much at all about his background as he was a birthday gift and the people who got him for me didn't think to ask questions. I'm not even certain of his age. All I know is that he was chose out of three other puppies that were supposedly from the same litter. They didn't see either parent. He was chosen simply because he was "cuter" than the others. In December, I will have had him for 8 years. We have quite the relationship. He has been here with me through thick and thin and through some very hairy situations. He's gone back to the States with me twice. One reason I got Little C when I did was because I was getting concerned about Sir N and the fact that he might not live forever. I knew that I would need another dog in my life that I loved a lot to survive Sir N moving on.

3MaltMom, Thanks for the tip and especially the website! (just hoping they ship overseas now) Once I finish up this post, I'm going straight there. It sounds like it'll be something good for Little C as well. Her knees are genetically bad. Already surgery on both and she seems fine now (thinks she can leap tall buildings in a single bound, the twit). However, that old saying, "An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure" is something I live by when it comes to them. (not so much myself)


MalteseJane and Holliberry, I know just what you mean! Whenever anyone asks about Sir N's age, they don't believe the answer! At home, he's rather lazy, but when I take him out, he acts like a three year old. He's bubbly, hoppy, and extremely interested in everything. Every time we move (We've moved 9 times since I got him, and that doesn't count the small moves within the same city), we end up with a new vet who doesn't really believe me when I say his age. But then, there are the times like last night, after I wrote the second post of mine is this thread. I shut of the computer and Sir N got up to go and sniff his food. He got up so slowly, was kinda shaky, and refused to put one of his feet down....the rear left leg, not the one that had had surgery. And yeah, this has sent me into panic mode and he's going into the vet as soon as he opens (he opens an entire hour later on Saturdays
for a complete checkup.
 

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Originally posted by 3Maltmom@Oct 14 2005, 10:40 AM
My foster, Daisy, will soon be twelve.  She was in very poor shape when she arrived a couple of months ago.  But a good diet, proper exercise and Syn-Flex has made her young again.

As far as walks.  I walk Daisy as long as she likes.  Sometimes it's just a block and back.  Sometimes we walk all over town.  Excercise is very important, and unlike the other four, who rip around the house like there's no tomorrow, Daisy doesn't get much excercise in the house.  So we walk two or three times a day.

For her arthritis, a result of luxating patellas.  And just for her all around old joints, my vet recommended Syn-Flex.  It's $29 for a six month supply.  This has been a miracle for my girl.  It comes in liquid form, and easy to give once a day.  I highly recommend it.  You can order it on-line at http://www.synflexamerica.com/pet

I also enjoy the company of a senior dog.  My Daisy is an absolute angel, and if I were adopting, I would take her over a puppy any day of the week


Here's an updated pic of the Old Girl:
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Daisy is beautiful. I would have never guessed her age to be 12. How did you get her? Are you with a rescue group also? Kirby is my first maltese foster and I love him. He looks far older than 3 but I hope to change that with good nutrition.
 
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