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Research on Dog Dementia Released: What You Need to Know

If you are the owner of a senior dog, then you may be concerned about canine cognitive dysfunction or dog dementia. The Dog Aging Project has just released a new study on the risk factors associated with this condition, and all dog owners must know what it says. In this article, we will discuss the findings of the study and what they mean for pet owners.



This study aimed to determine the prevalence of canine cognitive dysfunction (CCD) in many companion dogs across the United States. This is important because CCD often called "doggie dementia," or more accurately "doggie Alzheimer's", is a common disease diagnosed by veterinarians in senior dogs.


The study found that the prevalence of CCD was highly correlated with age, with every year clocked by a dog associated with an increased risk of being affected by CCD of approximately 52%. In other words, a dog that is eight years old has nearly a four times greater risk of developing CCD than a four-year-old dog.


This study also found possible links between CCD and exercise, with dogs who did not get much activity being more likely to be affected by CCD. In fact, among dogs with similar breeds, ages and health statuses, those with minimal training were over 6 x more likely to develop CCD. This has been theorised to be associated with exercise's protective effects on the brain. Although practice likely has a beneficial impact on the brain and many other positive factors for aging dogs, this relationship may be due to dogs with CCD being less active secondary to their CCD rather than exercise being protective. Further research is needed to understand this link.


Interestingly, another prominent finding was a link between the development of CDD and a history of the previous ear, eye or neurological disorders such as seizure disorders. It is still unclear if this relationship is due to underlying pathological processes such as AMyloid deposition, decreased neuronal stimulation, or simply a misclassification as sensory impairment. CCD can be challenging to distinguish in some dogs.


So what does this mean for dog owners? If you have an older dog, it is essential to be aware of the signs of


CCD. These include changes in sleeping patterns, increased anxiety, problems with urination and defecation, decreased interest in food and toys, and more. If you notice any of these changes in your dog, you must take them to the vet for an evaluation.


There is no cure for CCD, but there are ways to manage it and make your dog more comfortable. This may include medication, changes in diet and exercise, environmental enrichment, and more. If you think your dog may be suffering from CCD, talk to your vet about your pet's best course of action.


Medium-chain triglycerides (MCTs) are fat beneficial for dogs with CCD. MCTs have shown that they can help improve cognitive function in dogs with CCD within 30 days. If you want to try using MCTs to help your dog, talk to your vet about the best way to incorporate them into your dog's diet.


The Dog Aging Project is an ongoing effort to learn more about dogs' aging process and find ways to improve their health and quality of life as they age. If you want to learn more about the project or sign up to participate, you can do so at their website.


What do you think about these findings? Do you have any questions? We would love to hear from you in the comments! We hope you found this article informative. If you have any questions or comments, please leave them below.








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