Giving your dog the care and comfort he needs when cancer strikes can be rather challenging. This is why I’ve put together this blog post to walk you through the top 10 things you can do to help your canine family member who’s battling cancer feel more cozy.
So how about we jump right into it straight away?
Tip #1: Give your dog something soft that smells like you.
It can be a shirt, a blanket, or anything that’s got your scent on it. This is because dogs have a strong sense of smell. It’s much stronger than ours and the smell they love the most in the world is of course the smell of you, their parent.
It makes sense then why they’re always laying on the couch, your side of the bed or a pile of dirty clothes. So something soft and smelling like you is one of the best things you can do for your dog while they’re recovering or going through treatment like chemotherapy.
Tip #2: Be happy.
I know this sounds rather surprising, but here’s the thing. Studies show that our dogs get stressed when we’re stressed. They can tell when we’re sad, when we’re upset and even
when we’re happy. They actually use their sense of smell to read our body language and when your dog notices that your mood is different, they’ll adjust, too.
If you’re sad, they’ll show you empathy. On the other hand, if you’re happy, they’ll wag their tail. Dogs mirror our behaviors and our moods. So when they’re having a tough day and feeling down in the dumps, show your canine family member that you’re happy.
When you’re happy, they’re happy. Focus on your dog and the time you have together and ignore the cancer diagnosis and the toll it’s taking on your dog for now. Because when you stay positive, you improve your dog’s quality of life and well-being, too.
Tip #3: Pet your pup.
Did you know that dogs who are in pain or recovering from treatments like chemo need a lot of extra love? That’s right. When your dog is having a tough day, you can comfort them by giving them tons and tons of pets.
And actually, a veterinarian journal published a study about where dogs like to be pet the most. And their data showed that by petting your dog on the chest, you can actually help them decrease their heart rate and calm them down faster. Pretty neat, huh?
Tip #4: Give your dog lots of attention.
Dogs crave your attention, your affection and your love. You’re their parent and that’s why when you make eye contact with your dog, they feel the same way as babies do when their mommies look at them.
It releases “oxytocin,” also known as the love hormone and it’s a powerful hormone known to reduce stress, alleviate pain and strengthen emotional bonds. So go ahead and take those extra moments before you leave for work in the morning.
Make eye contact with your pup, love them, give them cuddles because it helps them feel better.
Tip #5: Go for walks.
Of course every dog’s cancer diagnosis is different. Some dogs are more tired than others, some lose their appetite and don’t feel like playing. For some dogs with bone cancer, jumping around and playing around just isn’t a good idea. So focus on low-stress activities with your fur baby.
Instead of hitting the dog park, go for a nice walk in the yard together. Get some fresh air, let them stretch and allow them to set the pace. Go as slow as they need to and make time for it every day. Trust me, your pet will love it.
Tip #6: Improve your dog’s access.
Pets battling cancer often suffer from pain and limited mobility. This means they might have trouble going up and down stairs or even hopping in bed at night to cuddle. And if your home has lots of slippery surfaces like tile or hardwood, they might be struggling to gain traction.
So to make things a little more comfortable for your furry friend, invest in things like pet ramps that lead up to your bed or ripped carpet squares to cover floors. And if you’re on a budget, something as simple as a towel on the slippery kitchen tile can mean the world to your pet.
Tip #7: Use dog diapers.
At its simplest, diapers cut down on messes. They also improve the quality of life of your dog and the rest of your family. Plus, it will help preserve your pet’s dignity and prevent him from feeling shame after an accident.
It’s crucial that you change your dog’s diapers regularly. Otherwise, they could end up with rashes, irritation and urine scalding. And if you’ve got a boy dog, try using belly bands to prevent him from doing any “marking” in the house.
Tip #8: Use a harness.
As we know, some dogs with cancer have issues getting around and it’s just not as easy as it used to be. If your dog has trouble moving their hind legs, try using a harness to lift them up as they go up and down the stairs. Or for example on your nightly walks around the block.
A harness will help your pup feel more secure as they move around, and they’re pretty easy to use. Most harnesses wrap around the rear of your dog around the hips or the abdomen. And as they walk, you help lift their legs and provide support.
These harnesses are especially helpful for dogs who can’t use neck collars anymore because of a neck or a brain tumor. And if you use a harness to help your pup around town, make sure you can slide at least one or two fingers between their body and the harness itself. You don’t want it to fit too snug.
Tip #9: Invest in a doggie wheelchair.
Some dogs with cancer can’t walk anymore because it’s either too painful, tumors get in the way or they just don’t have that energy anymore. So if your dog needs an extra boost with mobility, getting a quality doggie wheelchair is a good idea.
This way your dog can still go on walks without the pain and discomfort. Just because they can’t engage physically as easily as they used to doesn’t mean they don’t crave mental stimulation anymore.
A quick note, though. If you’re looking to get a wheelchair for your furbaby, make sure you talk with a rehab vet or an animal physical therapist first. You’ll need to get your dog properly fitted for their wheelchair to avoid injuries, tenderness or stiffness.
Tip #10: Discover the wonders of natural pet homeopathic products.
It’s the last thing on our list today, but it’s an important one because there are tons of natural products out there that can help support your dog, such as the Fomitopsis betulina mushroom, for example.
Fomitopsis betulina is an all-natural ingredient loaded with properties that can help strengthen your dog’s immune system. It’s even scientifically-proven to have anticancer properties, too! Natural products can promote long-term quality of life without any harmful chemicals.
And when your dog has a stronger immune system while they fight cancer, they’re more likely to have a better outcome. In fact, Zumalka offers PIPTOPET that’s made with Fomitopsis betulina. This premium natural product offers a gentle and holistic approach to health that can support your dog throughout their cancer and recovery journey.
So that wraps up our list of the top 10 things pet parents can do for their dogs who are battling cancer!
If you want to find out more about PIPTOPET or make the most out of natural products to keep your dog as happy and healthy as can be, don’t hesitate to contact us at any time We’re looking forward to hearing from you soon!
HOMEOPATH & CO-FOUNDER OF ZUMALKA
Suzie Cyrenne has dedicated more than 20 years of her life in making and improving natural animal health solutions in the global setting.
Being the co-founder of Zumalka, Suzie is a forerunner in enhancing the lives of pets through natural and homeopathic options using the knowledge she has gained from the Classical Homeopathy School in Quebec.
Besides immersing herself in books, personal development and visiting new places, Suzie also enjoys keeping herself in tiptop shape by snowboarding and taking daily hikes with her husband and Zumalka co-founder, Matt Lessard, and their Golden-Doodle, Westin.