Let’s talk Cognitive Function With Aging Pets
When my pets got considerably older, they seemed lost. They would get up and stop in the middle of the room. Did they need food? Did they need out? Did they want to get comfy on the couch?
It is really challenging to keep your pet’s mind active and you will have to find activities that keep them entertained, keep you enjoying them and allows you bonding time.
One of the ways we tried to keep our pets minds active were mind games.
Not the kind of mind games that Mean Girls play but…
Doggos had to go through their commands such as:
- Speak: is one of those games. Hand signal is associated with a bark.
- Middle: You move, part your legs and let your dog get in between.
- Come: You move and call and dog responds. Sometimes you hide and they have to find you.
- Find It: Nose work requires smelly treats like hotdogs and cheese (at this age those are permitted). Putting these treats in different places while the dog is not watching, they are forced to use their nose to find the goodies. The smellier, the easier it is to find. This is a game we do at home every day.
- Stolen: Impulse control. Sitting, standing or being comfy. Place a super smelly and delicious treat in front of your doggo or on the forehead, paw, nose/muzzle and it’s stolen (cannot be taken) until you tell them yes and the reward for waiting is the treato.
When it is difficult to sit and down, standing games work really well.
Even the cats participate.
Clicker train your pets. Yes your cats too!
If you cats do something you like, click and treat. For example, you know they come running when you open a can of food. Use their names, call, open can, they arrive, click and treat with a treat... then feed. Define what you want to train and enjoy!
If your cats like cheese, give them a little bit. It’s ok. This is how you teach them to play Jenga.
Playing Jenga may be just pushing the tower down! They are cats, they don’t have to make sense.
It could be teaching your cats to ring a desk bell.
There are toys you can purchase that force your catto to think about how to reach the treat, so it’s really a puzzle of sorts and it can really help keep their minds sharp. It doesn’t involve jumping and running but it keeps their minds occupied.
Oils that I like to use for improved cognitive function:
- Frankincense helps to relieve feelings of depression. Can be applied along the spine. While I love Frankincense, it does not taste good. If you do give it orally, place it in a veggie cap and dilute according to weight guidelines.
- DDR Prime is used for cellular regeneration and because it contains Frankincense, Wild Orange, Lemongrass, Thyme, Summer Savory, Clove and Neroli, giving this impressive array orally can really help your pets. For doggos 40lbs and over, 1 pill/day. 60lbs and over 1 in am and 1 in pm but dilute the oil itself and put a drop in the mouth or smaller animals and cats.
- Thyme helps addresses memory and concentration. Also tends to make pets more yielding to encouragement, which is really helpful when you want them to move with you.
- Sandalwood is calming and relaxing and has been recommended for use with Alzheimers patients. It helps remove feelings of confusion.
- Cardamom helps with mental fatigue and confusion. Can be applied neat to all animals. Apply behind ears on the neck and top of muzzle. Can add directly to food and/or diffuse.
- Basil can help bring about feelings of relief. Can be placed in food or diluted applied to back of neck both cats and dogs. Diffuse on collar.
- Citrus Bliss is downright invigorating because it reduces feelings of stress, anxiety and depression.
- Roman Chamomile reduces feelings of stress, anger, agitation and irritability.
- Melissa helps remove feelings of depression and anxiety and leave you feeling light and airy. Can be given internally or rolled on the back along the spine.
- Helichrysum is neuroprotective and can help with feelings of reassurance.
Wow that is 10 oils & these are some heavy hitters!
Are you overwhelmed yet?
Let me make it super simple!
Oral: Yes by mouth kind of oral.
DDR Prime. It comes in gel cap and one per medium sized dog or 2 for large breeds/day. Hide it in a piece of cheese or hotdog. DDR Prime contains so many of the oils on this list! It's oral and can be used either as a gel cap or can be diluted for litte-ler animals.
Roll on for the spine!
10ml roll on bottle recipe (tip get roller bottles from my Amazon link):
4 drops Frank
4 drops Thyme
4 drops Sandalwood
4 drops Basil
4 drops Helichrysum
4 drops Roman Chamomile
1 drop Melissa
Bring up with Fractionated Coconut Oil
For Dogs, run along spine
For cats, apply a little bit to your fingers, find the spine under coat and rub gently in 3-4 places.
Cardamom, you can add to food. You can tap on the top of the head or rub along the nose.
If you feel the need to dilute it, that is fine for animals under 20lbs and for over, definitely go neat.
This list has my powerhouse oils listed.
Let me know what your pet struggles with and I can help you pick out oils that will best suit your needs!