For the past year people keep commenting that ‘Gosh, Isla can’t be 9 already! I didn’t realise she was that OLD!’
It’s those three letters that actually upset me a little, O.L.D. – It’s something that’s totally out of my control, I can’t stop it happening and it constantly plays on my mind.
So for peace of mind I have a blood test done every 6 months to monitor things like her kidney function so I can intervene early when they stop working as efficiently as they do now!
Probably the biggest factor in aging is arthritis – with a billion supplements on the market all claiming to be the best, it’s hard to know what will work or what’s just very clever marketing.
Isla is still a super active dog.
So I currently have no obvious signs that she is suffering from arthritis or any discomfort across her little, wiggly body.
However I have noticed that on an evening when we are settled and resting at home, she has moments of licking her carpi (wrists) which could be an indicator of soreness. Although she has always had impeccable manners on the lead and off, I have noticed that she seems a little more reserved on walks and ‘hangs back’ from the others until encouraged to ‘go on then’.
The latter could be her just behaving better than the other two lunatics and trying to avoid ‘bitey face’ or just a little avoidance to anything more strenuous due to a little discomfort.
*** ‘Bitey face’ for those unfamiliar with the game is a rather noisy display of running as fast as you can whilst trying to bite the face of your friends, occasionally grabbing an ear or tail and then swapping and becoming the chased.
We highly recommend that humans do not play this game as it is more socially accepted for dogs to play with dogs they know – it is advised that dogs do not play this game with dogs they don’t know as their hoomans may be displeased. ***
ANYWAY….. I am satisfied after an appointment with our physio that Isla isn’t suffering with arthritis BUT that there is less range of movement compared to several years ago.
Not wanting to start adding stuff to Isla’s food (or spending a fortune on nutraceuticals that don’t work) I started looking into therapy products – there are LOADS on the market from ceramic fibre coats, vibrating buzzy coats and of course magnetic therapy.
I wanted to try something that was the least invasive method for Isla (wearing a coat for 8 hours a day is not practical in the life of a cocker spaniel) so a collar seemed a sensible solution.
We started using the Dog StreamZ collar earlier this year and I am really impressed with the results. The collar is a one size fits all and comes in three vibrant colours. We chose the snazzy purple number to contrast against her golden coat. The collar is easy fit – simply slide the end of the collar up and under the buckle to secure and cut the excess off. Easy Peasy!
Isla is noticeably more active and springy – when the dogs get let out first thing in the morning I am greeted with play bows and silliness instead of a real effort to get out of bed. Walks are certainly more enjoyable for her now. Although initiating ‘Bitey Face’ is still not on her list of top ten things to do (I’ve seen Jelli’s teeth and wouldn’t want to play this game either!) she is much less ‘pottery’ and off bounding around trying to find ‘presents’ to bring me!
She is licking her carpal joints a lot less than before and I have noticed her heelwork in obedience competitions is actually much better. She now maintains a lovely constant position, looks up at me more (more extended which would be more painful in a dog suffering with osteoarthritis) and has a lovely bounce and trot like movement. Judges have commented what a happy little dog she is and how I have a very bright future ahead. It is quite comical explaining that she is actually 9 years old now which is greeted with looks of disbelief!
I have also noticed when we attend our local hydrotherapy pool for fitness swims, Isla is much more enthusiastic about throwing herself off the side of the pool. Before wearing her StreamZ collar she would gently submerge herself and start paddling to retrieve her ball or toy. Now a small tidal wave is created with the force of her propelling into the water!
I would strongly recommend the Dog StreamZ collar to anyone who is worried about arthritis in their dog. It is a non-invasive and easy way to help reduce or eliminate signs of pain and as it can be worn 24/7, plus unlike supplements you don’t need to remember to give it!
I am so impressed with the results that I am strongly considering investing in the You StreamZ ankle band for me and the Equ StreamZ fetlock bands for my horse!