We know how enriching lives and environments helps captive animals of all ages in zoos, so why wouldn’t the same be true for dogs and cats of all ages? Dogs are used as a model for human aging, and it turns out that lifetime learning and movement may possibly delay (even prevent?) the onset of canine cognitive dysfunction syndrome. Movement may also keep pets more limber, and enrichment may provide a “purpose” in life and offers cats an opportunity to activate their hard-wired prey drives throughout life. Even elderly cats maintain that drive to hunt and pounce. In some ways, enrichment in golden years may be most valuable, in part, so that an older pet isn’t ignored in a home that also has younger and more active pets. Various examples of creative methods to enrich older animals’ lives, even those with physical limitations, are offered. Steve authored a chapter on this topic in the book The Treatment and Care of the Veterinary Geriatric Patient.
Enrichment for Geriatric Dogs and Cats: Discovering the Fountain of Youth
6:00 am PT
Steve Dale, certified animal behavior consultant (CABC), has reached more pet owners over the past few decades than any other pet journalist in America.
He is the host of two nationally syndicated radio shows, Steve Dale’s Pet World and The Pet Minute (together heard on more than 100 radio stations, syndicated Black Dog Radio Productions, since 2005). He’s also a special contributor at WGN Radio, Chicago, and program host of Steve Dale’s Pet World (since 1997). He formerly hosted the nationally broadcast Animal Planet Radio.
For 21 years, his twice weekly newspaper column was syndicated by the Chicago Tribune. Steve was a contributing editor for USA Weekend (2002 to 2014), and regular columnist at Cat Fancy magazine (2006 to 2014). He has written for a long list of magazines, from People to Dog World (where he was a columnist).
He’s currently a writer and contributing editor for CATster, and authors a column called Steve Dale’s Vet World for Veterinary Practice News. He’s also a columnist for the Journal of National Association of Veterinary Technicians in America and PetVet magazine.