It is a fact that dogs go through a phase wherein everything begins to move at a slower pace, a lesser dose or a more restricted action. It is during the senior years that the wear and tear of a dog’s bodily function become visible. Running or going for fetch isn’t a viable option now, eating treats that the dog’s stomach cannot fully digest can be noticed and even your dog’s eyesight becomes weary.
A dog’s eye health slowly declines during these years and as a pet parent, you need to properly care for your dog’s overall health to let him enjoy his remaining years in his life.
You should take note however that even though your dog is gradually losing sight, this does not mean that he cannot tend for himself. You don’t need to be excessively caring or becoming overprotective. Your fears and your worries about your dog’s capability to do things transmit the perception that he should totally rely on you which is not ideal.
Here are recommendations you can follow in order to accordingly take care of your dog.
Big changes in the household are discouraged
If you need to rearrange the furniture and fixtures in your home, do it in a strategic manner. This means identifying objects in the house that your dog can potentially bump into and damage or break. As time would progress, your dog will adapt to his new situation. A reminder as well to put his food bowl in the same place he was accustomed to.
This is to prevent him from searching pointlessly around the house when he is hungry.
Provide him with space and freedom
At the first signs of blindness, it is natural for your dog to bump into a wall or collide with the furniture. However, you should provide him with the assurance and freedom he needs to let him explore things on his own.
What you can do as a responsible owner is to make sure that nothing in his way could harm him like cleaning the left-over thumbtacks on the floor after a decorating project or cleaning up the kid’s toys that are lying on his pathway.
Seal off the stairs
During the first stages of a dog’s blindness, the stairs is a potential threat to him. At first, you must block it to safeguard him from either falling down the stairs or seal him off from going up. In time, you can help him navigate through the steps but it is recommended to do this initially.
Navigate him towards the placement of his belongings
A dog can use the location of his toys, food bowl and other belongings as his marker or starting reference in order to navigate around the house. In order for him to use this, lead him first to his own area and start from there.
Do not stop regular activities like playing and walking
Just because your dog is blind doesn’t mean he’s supposed to miss out on his exercise and playtime. Purchase squeaky or noise-making toys that he could play with. When walking, put him on a leash and guide him every step of the way.