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I feel rather privileged to have learnt so much valuable knowledge and skills from the wonderful members of this forum. But sometime I feel like the knowledge can be detrimental. Now that Sasha is almost 14, i have started to worry about her more. Because I have an increased level of knowledge concerning what can go wrong I find myself looking for signs and symptoms. I think to often I am looking for problems and I can't work it bad because its unnecessary excess, pointless, worrying or a good thing because I am less likely to miss anything.

Sasha saw the vet last week for some skin irritation and he was very impressed with how fit and healthy she is for her age. My old gold (well not sure if I can called her that as she isn't full gold, but half shepherd) is so very very special to me, she is my first dog and a big part of my life. We dog sat for my best friends parents and when Sasha went home she got depressed, she wouldn't eat, no tail wagging, she refused to look at her owners or greet them for two weeks (they probably deserved it the way they treated her). She picked my boyfriend and I am very honored to be selected!

So does anyone else feel like the more knowledge you have the more you worry and look for problems? Is this normal or should I be telling myself to stop being silly? I keep stressing about what happens if she dies. I can't imagine how I will cope!

As soon as I work out how to post photos I will do a proper introduction of Sasha. We have been members for a long time, but every time I go to introduce Sasha I can't work out how to post pics! I can't wait to get her pic up on the celebrate old gold!
 

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I feel that the more knowledge I have about my dogs' life cycles and possible health risks during those times, the more proactive I am with keeping them happy and healthy throughout their lives. In my book Knowledge is Power! I always worry about my dogs' health, even when they are puppies. I don't make the association of more knowledge with more worry. Instead I think the worry comes from an entirely different place--my love and growing bond with them over their lives. I could possess all the knowledge about dog health there is, but if I didn't have that bond and sense of family with my dog, I wouldn't worry about every little thing concerning their health and well-being. Because I am closely bonded with them, the worry is there, by definition (for me). So, for me, it's not the new knowledge, it's my bond with my dog that cause the worries. If I can use that knowledge to be proactive to increase my dog's quality of life, we all benefit.
 

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I can understand where you are coming from. For me, though, I feel the wealth of knowledge I have learned here has helped me be more attuned to my dog and her needs as she ages. And I actually feel better armed when I go to the vet with a specific concern (for ex. the "episode" Tesia had last week. I had no idea a grey tongue could indicate my girl wasn't getting enough oxygen, and that it could be connected to her heart). The knowledge I gained here armed me with specific questions and interest in her heart exam - for example, I appreciated when the vet said to the tech, "oh, can you bring the special cardiac stethoscope in?" She explained briefly to me that it would help her to listen more deeply, listen to the whole chest - and I knew why she was preparing to do a closer exam.

I have learned SO much here by reading the threads from people about something or other that happened to their dog... and the responses of members who've had experiences with the same symptoms or illness. I agree - knowledge is power.
 

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I think this forum has prepared me for what 'can' happen with our seniors especially and it is good and bad. Bad because now I too worry I am seeing signs of all of these different ailments but good because I'll be able to understand them when and if they really do occur. I hope this helps me in my judgement call of if the dog will have a god quality of life or not. Same thing with the horse...I know so many things that could go wrong but on the other hand recognize how lucky I am it has not gone wrong for these many, many years. They say ignorance is bliss, but in this case I think knowledge is necessary...
 

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Knowledge is a very powerful tool, especially if used wisely. You can prepare yourself for what lies ahead, but at the same time, you can drive yourself crazy worrying about something that may never happen.

I feel it's good to always be prepared, but more importantly, make the most of each day you have with your golden and try not to dwell on the what if. Life is to short to worry about the what if IMO.

Trust your Vet and work closely with him/her to provide the best care you possibly can for your golden.
 

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My first "golden" was a collie-mix, a wise and wonderful gal who taught me a lot about life and mostly about how wonderful these dogs are. A sweet rescue from the Humane Society, she certainly didn't qualify for any papers except that ones that let us take her home, but she had the intelligence, wisdom, grace and humor that I associate with the best of Goldens.

As for the knowledge, I think the most important lesson this Forum has to teach is that we don't know how soon we might lose our beloved fur-people and we should treasure each day of our lives with them. For myself, I would hate to lose one a day too soon because of what I didn't know.
 

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I worry, too

I do the same thing and when my Golden boy Babe was 12 I thought how will I deal with the inevitable. For us it came sooner then I expected, he had gotten sick and passed rather quickly. My first golden was 14 1/2 and well up until the end. I guess we can never know but I too, cherish the time we spend together as I do with my aging parents. I sometimes role play in my mind a senario about how I would cope or what I would do when that day comes. But somehow when the final note is there we cope. I never thought I would be able to say good-bye to Babe, but I did. I wondered how I would sleep, eat or otherwise function, but you do. I know that this is the circle of life and no one is exempt!
 
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