If you have a shelter dog, how do you deal with the not knowing? - German Shepherd Dog Forums
Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
post #1 of 17 (permalink) Old 01-20-2012, 12:26 AM Thread Starter
New Member
 
Pooka14's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Chicago
Posts: 14
Question If you have a shelter dog, how do you deal with the not knowing?

By this I mean the not knowing how old your pal really is? Pooka's originial adoption paperwork stated they thought was 6 months old at adoption. Given that the weight on his paperwork matches his current weight to the pound, it is more likely he was at least 1.5-2 years old (while talking to the vet about it to see if I was correct, it almost seemed like she wanted to say even older but stopped herself).

Even though I know worrying will not change anything, I can't help but wonder if he is actually even older. If he was 2 years old at that time, it would put him at aleast 11 now. Being that he is a mixed-breed (aka mutt), I am not sure what his expected life span is.

Some days he seems like a pup, but then he has his days where his age shows. His grey beard is full-blown. I guess it is the engineer in me that craves the "knowing" rather than guessing of Pooka's age. My husband was in denial about Pooka's age until a few months ago and it seemed to sink in that more so than ever, that Pooka is showing his age.
Pooka14 is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 17 (permalink) Old 01-20-2012, 12:33 AM
Crowned Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: york township, mi
Posts: 7,466
no matter how old they are, i always know that their lifespan is only a fraction of what mine is, that i'll have to let them (or help them), go way too soon...and that knowledge makes me enjoy every single second i get to spend with them. every single second. and it's never long enough. but every time one goes, since i cannot have an unlimited number of dogs, it has given me the opportunity to know another one. and they are all so incredibly special.

mom to the cashman
the rescues...jeni-take-a-ride, and the c-monster
shangri la's seraphina blue (RIP 8/1/15)
hearthside's cinderfella (RIP 4/20/09)
shep von bellefontaine (RIP 6/9/10)
cricket (african grey RIP 7/13)
voodoo lily (dsh RIP 8/15)
katieliz is offline  
post #3 of 17 (permalink) Old 01-20-2012, 12:40 AM
Member
 
hobbsie711's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Missouri
Posts: 68
All I know is the bad part of his life is over and it's time to start the good. Regardless of how much time he has left or has already spent.

Owned by

Mia (Cockapoo), Born 1/20/2008

Maverick (Yellow Lab), Born 4/4/04 - Lost 7/15/11
I miss you every day Mav.

Brock (GSD), Adopted 1/8/12
hobbsie711 is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #4 of 17 (permalink) Old 01-20-2012, 12:44 AM Thread Starter
New Member
 
Pooka14's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Chicago
Posts: 14
I agree and thanks for the comments. Pooka's been with us for 5 years now. He's my first dog and Brian's third dog. Something in my heart has been telling me the last month or so that we don't have a lot of time left with Pooka. But ever since he survived the episode with bloat, Brian and I know every day is a gift from God.
Pooka14 is offline  
post #5 of 17 (permalink) Old 01-20-2012, 12:45 AM
Master Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 551
The vets have told me that Blitz is anywhere between 4 and 8 (that was awhile ago). His age is hard to tell because while his canines, molars and premolars all look great, his front incisors are severely worn down, not sure from what. I try not to think about his age, I'd love to know but it's not really that important in the long run...I'll enjoy him while he's here.

As a side note, when people ask me his age, I always say 6. He's been 6 for two years now.
Greydusk is offline  
post #6 of 17 (permalink) Old 01-20-2012, 12:48 AM Thread Starter
New Member
 
Pooka14's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Chicago
Posts: 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by Greydusk View Post
The vets have told me that Blitz is anywhere between 4 and 8 (that was awhile ago). His age is hard to tell because while his canines, molars and premolars all look great, his front incisors are severely worn down, not sure from what. I try not to think about his age, I'd love to know but it's not really that important in the long run...I'll enjoy him while he's here.

As a side note, when people ask me his age, I always say 6. He's been 6 for two years now.
HA! When Pooka had his dental work done a year and a half ago, I remember the doc saying his teeth looked like the teeth of an 8-9 year old dog so even on the inside he must appear young lol.
Pooka14 is offline  
post #7 of 17 (permalink) Old 01-20-2012, 12:59 AM
Crowned Member
 
Chicagocanine's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Chicago, IL
Posts: 6,495
Most of my dogs before Bianca were strays, so we didn't know their actual ages. I did actually have some info for one of them because he had a rabies tag when I found him, and we were able to trace that back to the vet who gave him the shot. However that vet had only seen him once and the "birthday" they gave us was the same date as the vet visit but 3 years earlier which usually means the vet estimated the dog's age so they didn't know his actual age either. We were never able to get the dog's previous owner's current contact info, even with help from a police detective neighbor and from what they could find out think he was most likely dumped when the owner was moving.
I think the estimated ages the vets gave for my rescued strays were usually pretty accurate though, or at least they seemed fairly accurate from the way the dogs changed over time and their lifespans. I didn't wonder as much about their ages as about what happened to them in their previous homes and what they might have been like as puppies.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

Jubal/Tesla (Beauceron) 3/14/14
Bianca HIC CGC TT (GSD) 4/24/04-10/23/12
Chicagocanine is offline  
post #8 of 17 (permalink) Old 01-20-2012, 01:46 AM
Crowned Member
 
KZoppa's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Colorado
Posts: 19,157
my heart dog Zena is an unknown age. When we adopted her, we were told she was about 6. had a couple vets check her over and they said anywhere from 3-6. Her teeth werent in the greatest shape. Her energy and general behavior, we decided she was actually about 4. She's approximately 9 now and acting and looking like an old girl. She had to have surgery to drain an infection from her ears about 3 years ago and while she was under, she stroked on the table. Age is hitting my big ol' girl pretty hard now but she has her moments. It doesnt really bother me what age they may be. I'm glad to have them around however long and one of my future goals is to adopt a senior GSD and let them spend out their remaining time on a nice cushy bed or running til they just cant anymore. Just letting them enjoy life as they can.

Shasta GSD 5/5/10 CGC, ITD, TC
"Dax" Thor z vom Weberhaus BCAT CAX2 CGCA ETD HCT NCO-1 PKD-T RATI RATN RA TC TKA 3/18/2013
"Hades" Guilty vom Blutfeuer 10/26/2018
Zena GSD 6/1/03-2/16/2016
Riley GSD/BC 1/10/05-2/1/2013
KZoppa is offline  
post #9 of 17 (permalink) Old 01-20-2012, 04:16 PM
Crowned Member
 
AbbyK9's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: North Country, NY
Posts: 12,442
I think the real question is whether this actually matters at all?

When you adopt a young puppy, you expect that they will live a fairly long life. However, that's just an expectation. People expect that the average German Shepherd will live at least 10 to 12 years - just like people expect that the average person will live into their 80's. But those are just expectations and don't necessarily mean that this is what happens.

Young puppies can get sick and not live a long life. A middle-aged dog can get injured or suffer from bloat and need to be put down. And some dogs outlive our expectations and live for 14 or 15 years instead of the expected 10 to 12, too.

I suppose the point is, you never know what will happen. Your dog may live for another 10+ years or he may not. Regardless of how old he was when you adopted him. Enjoy the NOW, give him the best care you can to try and ensure he has a good long life, and take it from there.

On a side note, when I adopted my girl, the shelter staff had wildly different guesses as to her age. Someone said "about four". Someone else said "about two". I ended up getting in touch with someone who had previously trained with her - well, he found me and was able to identify details about her only someone who's worked or owned her would know - and he gave me her birth date as 28 December 2001, along with all her pedigree information. So she's 10. You wouldn't be able to tell she's 10 if you met her - I get people commenting on my nice "puppy" (!!!) all the time and when I tell them she's 10, they're usually like, "months?"

Malinois Ronja - fastest K-9 in VT
=^^= Finn, Ratchet & Ollie

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
-
To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
-
To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
AbbyK9 is offline  
post #10 of 17 (permalink) Old 01-20-2012, 04:28 PM
Crowned Member
 
Lilie's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: South Texas
Posts: 12,379
I adopted an elderly poodle once. Not a big poodle person, but I just couldn't stand the thought of the poor old dog sitting in a shelter. I was told she was between 8-10. She lasted less than 2 years before we had to help her on with her journey.

My last mini doxie I rescued, I was told she was 3-5 years old. I had her three years and she died suddenly of a heart attack.

The mini doxie I have now is suspected to be around 5 years old. She acts much older than our other doxie. Who knows?

All I can do is make sure that the last days...months...years that they are alive are the best they've had. They do that for me, why not return the favor?

Hondo Von Dopplet L Bauernhof "Hondo"- GSD
Lilie's Tug McGraw "Tug" - Golden Retriever
Maggie - Mini Dachshund (Rescue)
Lonestar Pivo - Texas Blue Lacy
Ashe - Barn Cat
Katie / APHA
Lilie is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the German Shepherd Dog Forums forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in










Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page



Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome