Canine Cognitive Dysfunction (CCD) is a disease prevalent in dogs that exhibit symptoms of dementia or Alzheimer’s disease shown in humans. CCD creates pathological changes in the brain that slow the mental functioning of dogs resulting in loss of memory, motor function, and learned behaviors from training early in life. In the dog’s brain, a protein by the name of beta-amyloid accumulates, creating protein deposits called plaques. As the dog ages, nerve cells die, and cerebrospinal fluid fills the empty space left by the dead nerve cells. Canine Cognitive Dysfunction takes effect in older dogs, mostly after 10 years of age.
Its basically Alzheimer’s for dogs. They have the same beta-amyloid protein build up in the brains of human Alzheimers patients.
Its important to remember this when you get frustrated with your dog who has Canine Cognitive Dysfunction. It is not their fault. They get confused and scared much like humans do. Be gentile with your dog about this. Comfort them, be there for them.
I dont intend on telling anyone what to do with the care of thier own dog, but if Ping gets to the point where I know he is suffering, if he is constantly confused and scared; I will say goodbye. Its the only compasionate thing to do, in my opinion. Right now, he is still happy to see me when I come home, happy for his treats and wags his tail at every opportunity.