I mention frequently our bulldogs and our Toller but I don't always share a lot about our aging field Springer Spaniel, Quest. I think it's his time to have a bit of the spotlight. :)
Quest came to us at age 4 from a professional field trainer in Minnesota. He excelled in hunting and worked like a hunting machine in the field. But, he also had a very soft temperament which made him a field trial washout. That was to be our gain! Bill researched long and hard to find just that right hunting companion, and he most certainly succeeded. We brought him home and he quickly adapted to life as a house companion and he brought many hours of hunting enjoyment and companionship. He came to work with me many days and definitely had the temperament for therapy work at the long-term care center where I worked. The residents loved him! Our all time favorite family activity was to take him to the Black Hills camping and for many miles of hiking. Great memories! He has enriched our lives in so many way...it brings tears to my eyes.
Quest is now retired from hunting and is beginning to age rapidly in his senior years. He is nearly 15 years of age and it's beginning to take its toll. Only this summer has he really started to show signs of arthritis in his joints, hearing loss and canine dementia. He receives his daily aspirin for his pain and also clomicalm for his endless pacing. Both help him to relax, settle down and just give his old body some needed rest. He is my constant companion...where I go, he goes. A loyal canine through and through!
With his age, his pacing and canine neurosis, the younger dogs quickly see him as the weak link. We keep a close eye on him and the others making sure they give him the respect he deserves as the elder dog. He is a true example of man's best friend!