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Discussion Starter #1
Maybe this doesn't seem like health and wellness, but I'm afraid vacation will kill my senior dog. To those of you who have/had seniors, how do you handle vacation? My GSD will be 13 in a few months. There is an excellent facility where I have boarded her for the past 10 years. She had done well, until recently.

In July, we went away for a week and boarded "Annie". She was in horrible shape when we picked her up. Her rear legs were so wobbly she could hardly walk. It took me over a month to get her digestive system under control - and I take her own food to the kennel. She deteriorated to much in that one week. Fortunately, she has come back to her old self - at least as well as an old dog's self can be.

I generally handle this dilemma by staying home. I never go on weekend trips. Earlier this year I missed a family weekend to Vegas. Next spring, I am going to miss one to Seattle. And I LOVE Seattle. I just can't leave her. I am already dreading next July, when we take our yearly trip to the ocean.

If I got someone to come to the house, they would have to stay here. It isn't a stop by, let the dog out. She is old and not used to being alone. She also has incontinence issues - always around 3:00 in the morning. Going to someone else's house isn't an option because Annie doesn't like other dogs. I'm sure they wouldn't appreciate the poo on their floors either.

I want to plan early, so any and all suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

Jan
 

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Contact your rescues. My neice volunteered for a local rescue and found a great need in 'house sitting' with family pets. She did that all through college, and enjoyed it very much.

Although she now has a full time job, every once in a while the rescue contacts her regarding someone in great need of a sitter.

It might be a streach, but worth a try.
 

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When we went on vacation recently, we hired a young man from our church to stay at our house and take care of Rocky. We made sure he came by several times before we left so they could get to know each other. It worked wonderfully. Rocky was a little unsure right after we left but by the time we came back he was sleeping in the bed with the guy.
 

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I agree...get someone to stay at your house if you can. Its so much better for your dog to be able to stay home in their familiar surroundings.

You can check with co-workers, friends, family, or in your church if you belong and see if anyone would be interested in pet sitting for you.
 

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I understand completely. My senior dog died last summer but I still have a senior cat with lots of health issues and complicated care needs. I have never kenneled my animals but when she was younger I would just have someone come in and take care of her a couple of times a day. Now I have friends stay here with her. If that were not an option I would hire a pet sitter who I know who used to be a vet tech.

Check out the pet sitting services in your area. Ask your vet, friends, doggie daycare places, etc. It is well worth the money...
 

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I agree with the house sitter. That will take a lot of the stress away having her in the comfort of her own home. Letting the person get to know her ahead of time would be beneficial as well.
 

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You can also post at a veterinary school if one is nearby. Schools usually have a job service for students. To reach vet techs a poster on a job board might work.
As Ruth already said, asking your vet is a good idea.
I so know what it's like. Good luck!
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thank you everyone. I agree that getting someone to stay here would be best. Annie would be fine alone, during the day for several hours at a time. She only sleeps. She doesn't have to be walked. She goes out in the yard to walk around, do her business and come back inside. It would actually be a pretty easy gig. It would be well worth the money to me - for her well being and my peace of mind.
 

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I also think a pet sitter would be best. I applaud you for taking such good care of Annie and putting so much thought into the best option for her.
 
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