In the last post, we looked at the connection between your dog’s brain chemistry and an explanation of general ways you can use this knowledge to help fight canine cancer.
Now, let’s focus on some specific techniques that can be used in day to day life.
It is clear now that your dog’s brain chemistry has a major impact on cancer development and progression. By changing this brain chemistry, we can help your dog.
Long-term mental states like boredom, lack of social interactions (loneliness), aggravation, lack of physical release (little exercise), and few opportunities to build self-esteem all lead to stress.
This is especially true if your dog cannot find a way to solve the problem. So if we are interested in using every tool to help our dear ones fight cancer, providing solutions to these problems will help slow cancer progression. This is extensively documented in published studies.
Translation? A longer and better life.
Canine boredom, isolation, and lack of stimulating exercise are likely pretty common. Everyone is so busy today with our jobs, worries, families, and so on. The truth is that many dogs end up being low on the life priority totem pole.
This is usually not anyone’s fault, but it just kind of happens. Of course, we need to put food on the table, the kids need attention, we need rest and our own time too. And then comes our pets once these things are addressed.
Now though, it is clear that we need to pay attention to our four-legged family members to make sure we fix the brain chemistry that leads to cancers.
Some of the best ways to help our dog’s brain chemistry are by stimulation. This can be done in many different ways, depending on your dog’s preferences and abilities. Build these into your daily calendar, and make sure you:
- Praise, praise, and praise more! Let your dog feel your excitement for their accomplishments.
- Alter your dog’s environment. Take trips to new places.
- Change the route you take to walk your dog.
- Increase your dog’s number of walks.
- Provide your dog with new toys and use them to interact.
- Schedule play dates with other dogs.
- Bring your dog to dog parks for social interaction.
- Bring your dog to places where there are new people, or bring new people to your dog.
- Engage in new physical activities (stairs, hikes, change the pace of the walk, etc.)
- Start new gentle training programs (sit, shake, fetch, roll, stay, heel, catch, etc.)
- Use different brushes and combs and switch them up for frequent home grooming sessions.
- For older dogs, try warm compresses before exercise, then cool ones afterwards.
- Massage your dog. Meditate with your dog. Question and talk to your dog.
Go ahead. Make a list of things that would work for your dog, and don’t put limitations on these things. You will be surprised at what your loved dog is still capable of.
Now, make a calendar with items on your list built in every day.
Finally, stick to it fiercely. Without discipline, life’s flow will carry you downstream, leaving your dog on the bank of the river.
You will be amazed at how good it makes both you and your dog feel.
The Dog Cancer Survival Guide gives you the roadmap and tools you need in this difficult time.
Dr. Demian Dressler is internationally recognized as “the dog cancer vet” because of his innovations in the field of dog cancer management, and the popularity of his blog here at Dog Cancer Blog. The owner of South Shore Veterinary Care, a full-service veterinary hospital in Maui, Hawaii, Dr. Dressler studied Animal Physiology and received a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of California at Davis before earning his Doctorate in Veterinary Medicine from Cornell University. After practicing at Killewald Animal Hospital in Amherst, New York, he returned to his home state, Hawaii, to practice at the East Honolulu Pet Hospital before heading home to Maui to open his own hospital. Dr. Dressler consults both dog lovers and veterinary professionals, and is sought after as a speaker on topics ranging from the links between lifestyle choices and disease, nutrition and cancer, and animal ethics. His television appearances include “Ask the Vet” segments on local news programs. He is the author of The Dog Cancer Survival Guide: Full Spectrum Treatments to Optimize Your Dog’s Life Quality and Longevity. He is a member of the American Veterinary Medical Association, the Hawaii Veterinary Medical Association, the American Association of Avian Veterinarians, the National Animal Supplement Council and CORE (Comparative Orthopedic Research Evaluation). He is also an advisory board member for Pacific Primate Sanctuary.
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