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June 15, 2021


Linda townsend

Puppies can display strange behaviors at sundown also, according to my vet.


Yes! My little dog Rascal, a pekingese, displayed the same symptoms, he was 15. He was fine until we moved, he was disoriented, just not the little dog that we knew, he seemed to be uncomfortable. I took him to the vet and he was diagnosed with doggy dementia. It was awful to see him like that.

Vicki Hoffman

My 3yo Multipoo has the same behavior. It was more evident when she was a puppy. She got very excited at sundown and couldn’t hold still unless we held her. She isn’t exhibiting as many symptoms now but some days she get jittery at sundown. She consistently wants to sit in our lap and be snuggled at that hour.

Leslie Myers

An Australian Terrier we once had exhibited these symptoms. They started at about age 10 and continued until she died. Our vet prescribed Valium for really bad evenings.

Stephanie Smith

When this happens in humans it can be related to an increase of ammonia in the blood stream related to liver function. Might be something to check out. Poor pup. He looks like such a sweetie.


Yes, I've heard of Sundowners in humans, but not canines. That's really interesting to know & be aware of in the future. Ozzie looks very concerned & I'm sure he's wondering what's changing for his longtime buddy.

Liz A.

One of our old Dalmatians was diagnosed with this and the vet prescribed Anipryl which really made a huge difference.

Diane McInerny

We have a 15 year old lab/border collie mix. She gets 100mg of trazodone around 4 pm. Without it she paces room to room and whines for hours. She has multiple other health issues but every morning gets up raring to go to the park.


yes. our now 14 yr old Malamute started having this problem 3 yrs ago. she also started becoming fearful of people and dogs she knows when out for a walk.

our vet put her on Trazadone and it has made all the difference in the world. she is calmer. doesn't pace and pant and she lets me sleep through the night most nights.


There are some medications that might help, but mostly the symptoms steadily get worse. My little girl Lady had to go out on the porch to check out the neighborhood 10 or 15 times during the evening and into the night, which was unsettling for both of us. She began to wait at the wrong side of the door when it was time to go out, and eventually lost control of her bladder, especially when she was relaxed or asleep. She was miserable, and it was best that she be put to sleep. After a while there isn't anything that medicine can do. Just love your buddy and make every day as comfortable as you can.

Robby H.

I have a friend who has a dog with anxiety (the poor thing was abused before she got to my friend). I'm not sure how she's using it, but CBD oil seems to have relieved her excessive behavior. She's still happiest with one of her humans in sight, but it's not a trauma if they go out to dinner. You know, back when people did that. Good luck! Those furry guys mean so much and it's hard to watch them suffer.


I have a Pit Bull, not very old, (she will be 7 in Sept) but when she gets "nervous" "pacing" etc. I totally cover her with a quilt so she can't see what is bothering her; or what she "thinks" is bothering her. Instant calm !!!!

Ginny Clyne

Make an appointment with your vet. He/she will give some type of medication to help. I had one of my schnauzer with this type of issue. The medication my her last 18 months much easier for the both of us.


Hi, we had a cairn terrier who had this diagnosis. He still lived to be almost 17 and to the end continued to appreciate his treats and walks outside. He would occasionally get “lost” in the house or fenced backyard. For example we would find him standing behind the washing machine or in a corner of the yard. All in all health wise he continued to do well. He was on a prescription drug, can’t remember the name of it. His pacing was minimal and seemed under control by the Rx. Best to you all.


Yes, my son's 16 year old Chihauhaua had dementia - and in the evening it would get worse - like people it's called sundowners. She would get lost in corners a lot. There is a medicine that helps.


Yes, we've been through it in the past and we're dealing with it now with Nickelby, our 16, 17 (?) year old cairn/silky mix. He also has bad arthritis so we help him up and down the stairs. We also now use pee pads if the weather is bad. Our four year old Maple refused to housebreak outside (she started her first year before we adopted her with pads.) But he still loves us, loves life, and we accommodate him.

We give him a supplement called Cholodin. It really helps and gives us sometimes months of symptom free relief. We watch him all the time so he doesn't get stuck somewhere. We limit his environment some - we have a barrier up between rooms sometimes so he isn't overwhelmed.

For trembling and fear, I also recommend Thundershirt. It helped our beloved Pearl with anxiety from thunderstorms, fireworks, etc. Also, Rescue Remedy for Pets helped.

It's difficult to watch, I know. We don't have children, but have rescued, adored, and cared for 8 dogs during our 41 years of married life (including my Rufus who was 8 years old when he "chose" my husband.) They are the world to us, and worth every second we can give them. Love to all of you.


I’ve heard that there are doggie cannabis products that can help with anxiety. Maybe your vet could advise you as to whether these would help with these dementia symptoms. So sorry for your poor little guy!

Vickie Perrine

We had a basenji, Ibis, who experienced the same thing, at 17! When she would, one of us would hold her on the rocking chair, until she was calm. It was like rocking one of my kids when they were infants. Sometimes we did it 3 times a day for Ibis. She had a seizure, and that's when we decided to let her go.
Our vet said that when a healthy, but old dog comes to its end, the body starts wearing out starting at the back of the body. Then it gradually gets up to the brain, and he told us this was one of the signs.

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