My latest housemate - older male lab

(11 Posts)
MardAsSnails Thu 12-May-16 09:35:44

I couldn't say no. Only the worlds biggest bastard would have said no.

Tonight, we will be inviting an old gentleman to live with us. We know his history, we know his allergies (sand, which is difficult living in the Middle East!), and we know how much his current human is gutted that he needs a new home.

He's lived outside for many years so isn't house trained and has forgotten how to walk on lead. He's also a bit underweight, but we'll sort that out - we're good at that in our house wink. He's also a bloody big softie, and used to knock on DHs office window when he wanted some belly rubs during working hours cos he clearly knew DH is also a softie

He also still has his fucking massive bollocks. Both my girls are done so no problem in-house. He'll be going to see our vet tonight before coming home to double check for nasties before bringing him near our girls so I'll ask him, but does anyone have any experience with neutering an older lab? Is it recommended - or not - for any reason? Do older dogs usually recover well? Or would it be best for him to remain intact at his age? (We believe he's around 8-9 years old, so not hugely old but definitely a senior!)

He's currently being fed hypoallergenic Royal canin - other than going raw, which would send OldGirl crazy as she can't eat like that and would love it, any specifics regarding the breed? I have only ever had Dalmatians who have weird dietary requirements, so just wondering if there's anything I should know about labs?

From what his human has told us he's had no problem with his hips so that's good. Is there anything else I should know about an old man lab?

MardAsSnails Thu 12-May-16 09:36:59

Just to make sure you respond, this is the fella grin

Madblondedog Thu 12-May-16 09:43:56

Nothing helpful to add as my lab is only 3 but just wanted to say he's gorgeous and looking good for his age smile

BernardsarenotalwaysSaints Thu 12-May-16 09:50:44

Well regarding food they can have dustbinesque tenancies, so getting weight on him shouldn't be a problem (meaning you also have to be careful not to overfeed).

The fact his hips are good is great! They can also be prone to elbow problems so again keeping them at the low end of a healthy weight will mean no extra stress is being put on the joints.

Lots of fun lead training little & often should get him used to it again & the same with toilet training really. Right back to basics as if he were a pup.

I'm not a fan of RC foods (they're overpriced with less than fantastic ingredients) if you can source it & he'll eat it a good quailty complete working food (that meets his allergy needs) will be just as good.

He sounds lovely, I hope he brings you many years of joy smile

BernardsarenotalwaysSaints Thu 12-May-16 09:51:45

X with your picture. Awww he's lovely, he doesn't look 8!!

MardAsSnails Thu 12-May-16 10:11:55

Thanks both, he's a lovely old man and whilst we don't really have the room for another big dog that's a lie, but it's what I tell DH so we don't end up with a menagerie, he needed to live somewhere nice.

I'll see what brands are available food wise. OldGirl used to be on the fish4dogs which is fairly hypoallergenic but is no longer stocked here. Any specific brands regarding the working food? Then I can do some calling round the vets surgeries to see who stocks what.

He could be even older than 8-9 - current owner rescued him as a young adult dog around 7 years ago, but nobody's certain of his birthdate

pigsDOfly Thu 12-May-16 13:48:45

You're doing a lovely thing taking in this old gentleman OP.

He certainly does look good for his age. Wondering if being slightly underweight has help keep any obvious hip problems at bay; that maybe absolute rubbish as I know nothing at all about labs and their hips, but is just a thought.

Also not keen on Royal Canin. My dog came from the breeder being fed on the puppy food, which didn't seem too bad. I imagine the hypoallergenic food is different but the first ingredient of the regular adult food is grain, so pretty poor quality.

1frenchfoodie Thu 12-May-16 17:21:13

Handsome dog, sounds as though he has fallen on his feet with you. We neutered our 12yo lab last year and he recovered well. No temprement change (he is as soft as ever) and only a slight propensity to put on weight for which we adjusted his food. We use Millies Wolfheart for our dogs but not sure if you can get it where you are.

Sure you have taken vet's advice on his weight. Worth bearing in mind there are different builds of lab and to aim for gain that is in line with his build - many labs I see err on the porky side.

Sand allery in the ME, poor guy. I'd always thought of sand as pretty inert.

1frenchfoodie Thu 12-May-16 17:24:46

We had our old boy neutered at 12 as vet thought being entire had contributed to cancer he had around his bum and posed greater risk for reoccurence. Not sure how valid that is as a general point but he recovered well and the cancer has not returned.

mrslaughan Thu 12-May-16 22:01:00

Our dog is entire - about 3 1/2 - I know being entire poses some increased risk in some cancers that can develop when they are older.....but when we were talking to the vet about it , he was v relaxed about the thought of neutering an older dog if it ever became an issue. I imagine the biggest issue is the anesthesia

MardAsSnails Fri 13-May-16 07:13:38

Thanks for all your comments

He came home last night but due to traffic we missed the vets before they closed.

Since DH last saw him (he was living in a construction compound where he used to work), which was around 6 mo the ago, he's lost around 7kg. His hair is like straw.

I'm no vet but in my opinion after seeing him sitting around the house, his hips are fucked.

He's had 15 ticks removed from him, and we're about to give him the Fido rinse.

We were up all night panicking as he wouldn't eat or drink, and after our rescue last year ended up so ill with erlichia and babesia, we were fretting.

This morning - proper Hoover lab! He's had around a litre and a half of water too and he's begging for everything.

Until we can get to he vets tomorrow he's in a separate bedroom from the existing dogs, but he seems nice and chilled out

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