|Barked: Tue Apr 24, '12 9:56pm PST |
|My dearly departed Duncan had issues with dementia that began when he was about 14 and became more pronounced over time. There were 'accidents' in the house, and some confusion although it was hard to tell how much of it was caused simply by the concurrent decline in his hearing and vision. Later he became fully incontinent and more in a "fog" mentally.
All the above was sad, but a natural part of his aging. However, then he went into another stage that was really uncomfortable. He was often agitated, pacing, obsessively sniffing at seemingly nothing. At this point I consulted with my vets about interventions. We started Duncan on a drug called Selegeline that is also used in human Alzheimers patients. The vets cautioned before we started the therapy that it had NO effect on about half the patients that tried it.
The Selegeline - for Duncan - worked wonders and I was so relieved that he seemed to regain his peace. He was still quite foggy, but not agitated and anxious.
But, after a while, either the effectiveness of the drug wore off, or his aging advanced beyond what the drug could stave off. The agitation never returned per se, but other mental symptoms worsened.
Still, I'm glad that we took advantage of the Selegeline as it did provide clear benefits for a time, and gave Duncan a better quality of life for that period.
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