The debonair Thurston is my dog of the week. He is a 10-year-old dachsund who has lived most of his life in New York. He recently moved across from the Big Apple to the Big Smoke and is doing brilliantly. However there was an incident where Thurston was laying on a sofa and a friend he knows really well leant over him to pick something up and he lunged and bit.
The bite was not severe but nonetheless in his 10 years of life, it's the first time. Which obviously worried his owner, as it is out of character. The most important thing to remember when an incident happens with your dog, is to look at whether this is a new development or has this been on the cards for a while.
We also have to look at the fact that Thurston (aka Noodle) is a 10-year-old gentlemen which means that we cannot overlook the reality that the ageing process may be taking its toll. And then we look at him being a dachsund who can suffer with their backs or legs. So when you put it all together its likely that they are other reasons for the bite.
We are in the process at the moment of investigating through blood testing and eye tests to check what is happening if anything. He hasn't been keen on walking up steps recently so he has been put on rest by the vet. So until we know the outcome we can't progress much further.
What is important is that when your dog is going into his senior years that you set him up for the most comfort you can. This should come through really decent food, exercise, play, good supplements and of course love and boundaries. All of which Thurston is getting, we have made some amendments to some of the above which he seems very happy with.
Thurston's case is a really good illustration of showing that all dog behaviour happens for a reason. The key is to not over react and try to look at the situation objectively and just as we have, always make sure you ask your vet to do a thorough examination before implementing training or behavioural changes.