Few of us want to think about our beloved furry friends ever falling unwell, but realistically, at some point every dog owner is going to go through the point where your dog needs treatment for something. It might be an accident they are recovering from, an acute illness that requires treatment, or the biggest of them all; managing a chronic illness.
While the first two of the above examples are difficult to deal with, handling a chronic illness with your dog is one of the most turbulent experiences that a pet owner might go through. Below, we’ll cover four of the scenarios you can encounter when managing a chronic condition, and how you and your pooch can survive them still the best of friends.
PROBLEM: Medication Worry
Dogs are, in general, far easier to administer medication to than cats – that much is a given. If you have ever had to give your dog medication prior to their illness, you might have thought it was easy – wrap it in a piece of bacon, throw it in the air, and they’ve taken it before they know it (unlike with a cat!).
Dogs with chronic conditions, however, tend to be a little bit savvier. They begin to sense there is something in their food and may begin to reject it, because it’s not a one-off every more; it’s daily life.
How To Cope: Always try and vary the times of day that your dog receives their medication. If you always make their evening feed the time they get their pills, they will begin to be suspicious of anything you give them around this time. If they are rejecting food, you might have more success with dog pill pockets that can hide the truth from their clever nose.
PROBLEM: Scheduling Conflicts
Managing a long-term condition in your dog is not as easy as it sounds. While in the early days you will drop everything to ensure their every need is met, after awhile, it will just become another time-consuming task you have to take care of.
If you struggle to stick to a dedicated regimen of medication and vet appointments, it’s understandable. It’s hard; really hard, especially if your dog generally seems to be doing well. So don’t feel guilty; just figure out a way to manage things.
How To Cope: Set as many reminders as you need for the daily and weekly tasks that are required to manage your dog’s condition. If you leave everything to your memory, it’s too easy to slip up, so don’t risk it.
PROBLEM: Financial Quandaries
Pet insurance is a wonderful thing, but it can be tough when your dog develops a chronic condition. Some insurers might only pay out for a set period of time, or will limit the amount you can receive per condition. So insured or not, you might find yourself struggling for the financial essentials to meet the treatment your pooch needs.
How To Cope: Talk to your vet about setting up a regular payment, which goes to them whether or not your dog has needed anything from their service in that month. This should help you build up a balance you can use when needed, and guarantee you always have the funds you need to tackle any sudden issues.
Managing a chronic condition isn’t easy, but with the above steps, you should be able to cope – and your dog will be happier for it, too.