Beautiful retired working dog Cash has been in our care for nearly 2 weeks. Here is an update from his foster carers in Waimate:
10 year old Cash is an absolute pleasure who brightens the room with his kind eyes and loving presence. His calm and gentle demeanor has remained unphased in our busy household. He gives the cats and poultry a wide berth, interacts well with the other dogs he has met and is sweet natured with everyone, being especially loyal to anyone he identifies as "his person." He is enjoying his new retirement, pottering between his favourite things - pats, bed, a gentle brush, a short stroll and his much-loved meal times.
Cash was very stiff in his back end upon arrival and X-rays revealed that he has a condition called Spondylosis, where his body creates additional bone along his spinal vertebrae in order to provide stability, compensating for the degeneration of his spinal discs. In order to halt the progress of this condition and prevent the bony growths from growing further and pinching nerves, it is imperative that Cash has a low-impact lifestyle and that his bodyweight remains trim. As there is so much bony growth at the base of his tail, his vertebrae has melted together in a chunk, this is why he can't raise his tail. He needs a little extra help in keeping his bottom clean. He is on a good quality feed and medication. We quickly noticed a big difference in his comfort levels once he started treatment. He has so much more movement, he even rolled over for a tummy rub yesterday, is playing and his energy levels have increased.
We allow Cash to dictate the speed of his short walks and he keeps to heel beautifully - unless something smells particularly yummy! He is very food motivated and has a history of swallowing foreign objects so it is important to keep food tainted objects out of his reach. He enjoys the company of the children and senior dog with whom he is fostered, they are gentle and respectful of his space.
Cash is unwaveringly sweet and hasn't reacted negatively to anything. Overall, he is a funny old chap in the most loveable sense. He just potters around for the most part, spending a lot of time sleeping but always up for some attention. I love his quirkiness - his lopsided ears, his happy eyes and sudden bursts of playfulness, which usually happen at dawn and dusk. We laugh that he drools when excited and that we all run away before he shakes it off. Because he is as tall as Gracelyn, he once wiped his droolly mouth in her hair, haha!
Today the girls asked me to explain Cash's X-rays. When I explained about Spondylosis, Gracelyn said sadly "Poor Cash. Will he get better?" I told her that he already feels much better and is very happy.
Cash was quite strong and pushy around doorways when he first came. He is now becoming much more respectful, responding to "out" and "wait." This evening he waited patiently when the back door was open, until told "go to bed" and then he walked straight through the kitchen (usually gets distracted there by foody smells) to his bed. He always has a treat for going to his bed and the girls clamour about who gets to feed it to him. We are going to see how Cash goes over the next couple of weeks and will update you again, he will be seeking a 5 star home.
We are glad that the previous owner of Cash was happy to work in with us and he has been made aware of his condition. We love that many people are looking to adopt retired working dogs! If not going through a rescue, we do strongly encourage them to please have their new companion vet checked to ensure they are comfortable as possible and they get the retirement their hard working bodies deserve. They hide their pain very well! 🙂🐾