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  #1  
Old 01-17-2016, 06:00 PM
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Default Dementia?

For the last year, Honey has lost all interest in toys, she doesn't really like walking but she likes to ride on the foot board of my mobility scooter. She forgot all the tricks i taught her, and i tried to re teach her and when we do 'touch' with hand or target stick she just licks them. She wants to please me but she constantly forgets what we are training and will lick nearby objects when she forgets what to do. The water bowl is about two steps away from where we are training, and she is always drinking loads now, when she she has a drink she wanders away and has forgotten what we are doing.

She sleeps loads, some days she will sleep for about 6 hours non stop, she becomes slightly unresponsive and sometimes growls if i check on her. Some days she also doesn't really greet people, she just shakes and stares into space. Also very ocassionally she paces and if i get her to stop she will sit bolt upright on me and stare at the wall.

Good days she just has the first paragraph of things, and she will love greeting people and watching tv and being cuddled and she has a good quality of life.

The vet can't find anything other than IBD, and she has a bladder growth which isn't growing and a tumour antigen test last year was negative. She thinks she has a kind of early onset dementia.

Anybody know anything about this?

Btw, she just turned 6 last month
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  #2  
Old 01-17-2016, 06:22 PM
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This makes me think of seizures also, but I don't have much personal experience with them. I know other here do. I have heard of the staring being related to dementia, but as you said she is awfully young for that sort of thing, especially being a Chihuahua.


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Old 01-17-2016, 06:39 PM
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I think maybe that a vet neurologist maybe? This is really early for dementia. Maybe a brain tumor/seizures that aren't noticible.? Keep trying.
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Old 01-17-2016, 06:58 PM
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Wow, yes, I agree. As I was reading your post I was totally agreeing that it sounded like she was showing signs of dementia and was expecting you to say she was in her teenage years. But only 6 years old?? That doesn't seem right; that's really young, especially for a Chihuahua as mentioned.
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Old 01-18-2016, 03:07 PM
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Is her hearing going? Or her sight? I had a 15 yr old Min Pin and her hearing started going when she was about 13. By 14 she was completely deaf. A lot of what you list were also things we saw in her. She would sleep long times because no noise would wake her up. She would growl if we "snuck up" on her (not on purpose - but to her it was sneaking) or if we tried to rouse her from sleep. She stopped coming to commands as well when normally she was VERY good with commands.

Try startling her with a loud noise when she is not looking your way. Have someone go outside without her knowledge and ring the doorbell etc.

Now, some of the other stuff sounds sight related. Bella also would 'stare" into space - especially when it was in a Very bright room. It was because she could see shadows and things and not quite make them out because of her really bad sight. She eventually became about 75% blind by the time of her death as well as completely deaf.

By the way, if this is sight or hearing related they can still live VERY long, productive lives. You just need to make accommodations for them.
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Old 01-18-2016, 03:29 PM
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Thanks for your replies.

I don't think it is seizures, i realise the description could sound like it but in my experience it doesn't quite seem to fit.

I don't think she is losing her hearing, especially since some days she is better than others but i will experiment and see.

Her sight seems fine, she can still see the tv and things like that as far as i can tell. I know when it gets dark ever since she was a puppy if you played with a toy indoors she would watch the shadow rather than the toy. But that is something she has always had and these other problems are more recent. She has had a general eye check.

It really is like a dementia type thing, but i don't personally know what other neurological conditions they can get?
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Old 01-18-2016, 07:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pinkprincess View Post
It really is like a dementia type thing, but i don't personally know what other neurological conditions they can get?
Has she has her thyroid checked? I had a cat with thyroid issues and she would just stop and stare at a wall. She would also start walking to her bowl for a drink and sort of get "lost" on the way. Then she would sit, rethink, and then carry on her way. She would also be restless the closer it got to night time.

Google "thyroid symptoms in dogs".
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Old 01-18-2016, 08:34 PM
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The Effect of Hypothyroid Function Function on Canine Behavior

From the article:
They sleep more, seek out heat sources, and show reduced scenting, hearing and visual acuity. While these signs might be attributed to advancing age or even cognitive dysfunction, they will resolve with treatment of the hypothyroidism along with the behavioral problems.

Behaviors are lost from one training session to the next. Owners often describe these dogs as appearing to have AD/HD. These dogs may become fixated on one activity – such as playing Frisbee – and only value their owners’ presence for providing this.

Deficiencies of thyroid, adrenal cortex and sex hormones impair learning and the ability to store memories and behave normally. The adrenal hormones are directly involved in learning and behavior, while thyroid and sex hormones appear to modulate learning, memory and behavior at a higher level (Fedotova 2000). Hypothyroidism often reduces cortisol clearance. Conversely, glucocorticoids inhibit TSH release in response to thyrotropin releasing hormone (Otsuki et al 1973), reduce conversion of T4 to T3 (Chopra et al 1975) and have direct effects on the thyroid gland itself (Kemppainen et al 1983), so that stress could further diminish the function of a suboptimal thyroid. The thyroid-adrenal axis could be expected to affect behavior at all levels.
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