Tuesday, March 25, 2008
This is our sweet, old dog, Lady. She turned 13 a couple days ago. I think 13 is pretty old for a Golden.
She is the sweetest dog, so gentle and kind. She loves being part of the family; so much a part of the family that she has a dog bed upstairs and downstairs. But she is not so good with steps now days. She can get up them just fine (although she is huffing and puffing by the time she gets to the top); she just can't get down. She can't see very well and is mostly deaf. However, she REALLY wants to be upstairs with us and used to sleep upstairs every night. Then she went through a period where she would fall down the steps almost daily. And then she started sleeping downstairs once in a while, I guess her old bones were too tired to go upstairs. But now she is afraid to come down the steps. She will sit at the top of the steps and cry and yip and bark. She'll try to come down, hesitate, and then lay down again. She will do this for HOURS. And I do mean HOURS. Like 8, 10, 12 hours. Some days I can lure her down with her leash and the promise of a walk. Other days I have to lure her down cheese or meat. And other days, she won't come down AT ALL. She will wait until my husband comes home and then she will come down for him.
This has been breaking my heart. So we started closing the child-gate at night on the steps so that she can't come up. Some nights she is ok with this; other nights, she will lay at the bottom of the steps and cry. On those nights, my husband goes downstairs and sleeps on the couch so that she has company. This will calm her down and she will go to sleep.
Although she is old, she is clever. Last night my husband closed the gate, but didn't latch it. Lady nudged it open in the middle of the night and made her way upstairs in the dark! She just wants to be with her family. The problem is, she is spending her days upstairs crying to get down or her nights downstairs, crying to get up.
Although I am strong, I don't think I can safely carry a 100 pound dog down 14 steps.