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Hey everybody. Sorry, but this post may seem kinda long.

So my miniature dachshund is 8 years old and I was wondering if this is too young for the breed for her to be considered a senior dog? She's starting to get white, not only in her face, but other parts of her body too. She's also gaining weight even though she's still on her usual dog food and is getting the same portions, but I think this could be playing into the fact that she barely does anything anymore. Before she had to trot/run everywhere she went, and now she'll walk or just lay around all day, sleeping most of the time (much to the disappointment of my mom's frenchie). In fact, she's gotten quite fed up with the other animals and if one of them pesters her too much or gets close while she's sleeping she'll snap and go after them occasionally.

She also can't jump up on the couch anymore like she used to only a few months ago, and every so often she'd prefer it if we carried her up our stairs. I know doxies are prone to back problems and so we're trying to limit her on trying to jump and down everything now. Her breath smells horrible and she's already had several teeth removed I think her canines are going to be the next to go, even with us brushing them and everything. She also tends to smell, even just a mere day or so after getting a bath. None of our previous dogs were like this that I can remember so idk if it's normal. She also tends to have sneezing and coughing fits (sneezing's kinda normal but she's started coughing every now and then within the past 6 months or so but comes out of it fine). She's due to go to the vet soon and I kinda want to address them with this.

Our last family dog before my parent's divorce unfortunately never made it to old age because of a brain tumour, and our dog before that was quite old when she passed and I was still kinda young to really remember what she was like in her senior years. I think of my doxie really as my "first" dog, since I'm the one solely responsible for her and was responsible for training her and everything, despite growing up with dogs my whole life. Could all of this be considered signs of an old dog, or something else? All of this has been fairly gradual and nothing has just suddenly popped up..
 

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It sounds like there might be an undiagnosed health problem. Difficulty moving, not doing activities she used to, and being grumpy with other creatures together point to pain. If she is self-restricting activity due to pain, that might also explain why she's gaining weight as well, despite being on the same food ration. I would definitely schedule an appointment with your vet soon (not an emergency, but sooner is better than later) and tell them about the changes you've noticed in the last few months. If something is wrong, it's better to address it now so you have a better chance of preventing it from getting worse.
 

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I know 7-13 years seems to be considered "senior", 7 years being for large dogs and 13 being for smaller dogs. You can look up an age chart that kind of helps explain it. It might be time to talk to your vet about getting her on medication if she's suffering some arthritis or other diseases associated with old age. The only way to know will be to talk with your vet.
 

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Agree a vet opinion is the best. Describe everything to your vet that you have described here, any one of these symptoms could be a clue as to what is going on with her. At age 8 I typically do not expect a small dog to be slowing down that much just yet. The only signs of aging my small dog and family/friend's small dogs have at that age are gray face. My small one is still very active, she definitely gains very easily though and does not need nearly as much calories/fat. She also has bad arthritis, CBD treats have done an amazing job helping that though.

It is always important to remember old age is not a sickness. While age can cause more aches and pains and energy reduction, it should not cause a huge personality shift suddenly. This usually progresses over time. Bad smell is not something I have ever heard being caused by age either. Another thing to think about is that dogs do not naturally have horrible breath. That is typically a sign of infection in the mouth. That is definitely something that could cause grouchiness, lack of energy, and all around feeling lousy. It's amazing how much dogs can turn around after a good dental if infection is a problem.
 

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The second half of their typical lifespan is what I would call senior, with larger dogs being considered senior before a smaller dog. Graying alone isn’t proof that they are a senior. My Rat Terrier started going grey at six, and his face was almost completely grey by the time he was ten. My GSD is just starting to go grey at seven.

I agree that is sounds like she has an unaddressed health issue going on. A vet check, with bloodwork, including a full thyroid panel (which needs to be sent to an outside lab) is in order. She’s right at the age when thyroid problems start showing up, and all the symptoms she’s exhibiting can be indicative of low thyroid.
 
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