More on dementia

I am writing a book on Dementia; it will discuss our ups, downs, twists and turns.  The form will resemble that of a journal I guess to help those who may deal with it or have dealt with this horrible disease.  Like Alzheimer, dementia can strike randomly.  We would have never thought that our little tank built, sharp as a whip Jack Russell would have been hit by it.  Once feisty, tenacious and very dominant girl has been transformed into a lost soul.

This is the first dog of ours that has suffered from dementia; although a couple seemed like they had it as they got older but once you see it you know that a little confused is not dementia.  Jessie has very few agendas now; not long ago she was driven by food, movement and dominance.  She still likes her food but comes no where near the gusto of just a few months ago.  Her prey drive is all but gone; there have been a few sparkle moments but they are minute to what was once a very driven little dog.  And the dominance is also but a memory; there have been a few stray attempts but mostly it is gone.

Everything has changed in a matter of months.  Many hours are spent wandering; pacing and searching for something that she cannot find.  There are strange things going on in that little head now; most I cannot even guess at anymore.  She still takes comfort in my arms but can typically be found away from the rest of the family.  This is one common symptom of the disease; preferring to be alone, not a typical dog behavior.

Not only has Jessie been stricken by dementia but her sight, hearing and sense of smell are almost gone.  Her hearing is the worst; she can barely hear a scream and even at that I think it may be the vibration she is feeling and not hearing at all.  She is steadily getting worse; not at a fast rate, more like a snail pace but worse none the less.  It is sad to see a once vibrant force to be reckoned with succumb to this disease that literally sucks the life from a dog.  On her moments of energy it is good to see her come to life about meal time or walk time.  It truly is the little things.


  1. this is so sad...sherri, i never knew dogs could get dementia...i'm sorry for your little girl and for all who love her.

  2. Thanks so much for these posts. Even though dimentia in our pets is disheartening & disruptive, it is totally normal when we all reach old age. We just have to find the best ways to cope.

  3. Over the last 8 months we have watched our 8 yr old Weimaraner change drastically. He has always been a sweetheart and great with everybody. He has turned into a grouchy ole man! It is sad to watch. He has become aggressive and will charge people. I have always brought him with me to my office on a children's campus but I know longer can trust him. It is just such a drastic change he doesn't seem like the same dog at times. The vet did diagnose him with Dementia and prescribed Anxitane. It has helped somewhat but the aggression is still present. Any suggestions?

  4. Hmmm; dementia has not made our girl aggressive at all, it has probably toned her dominance down. Has your boy had his hearing/vision tested? How about other health issues? Perhaps hips? Could be pain related. What other behaviors have changed? Things that made the vet think dementia?

  5. Anonymous; dementia is not normal for old dogs. Many people think of funny age behaviors and dementia as the same thing but they are very different.


Love to hear from you.