Anosmia and Older Pets
As you may or may not know, I recently experienced the loss of my precious furbaby “Princess.” It’s been a difficult time, as she was my little best friend and companion for the past 14 years. Her adventurous spirit brought my family and I so much joy. She also taught me so many awesome life lessons and pet hacks.
I had plans to update a previous post I had written about generally living with anosmia and pets but now that I have reflected a lot on what I’ve learned about having anosmia and owning older pets, I decided to share a new post where I present a question I came across on an online forum last year. It deals specifically with how to handle older pets and taking into consideration their growing needs and situations we need to handle even though we can’t smell.
The truth is when I first got Churrito and Princess I didn’t ever think as far ahead as how their needs would change as they grew older, or even if my anosmia would play a role in owning pets. Fast forward 14 years, and I am now aware of what this means.
Okay so back to the forum question. Someone was specifically asking for help on how to deal with not being able to smell and juggling an aging pet with incontinence. I know, this is an odd topic but it’s part of the reality of owning a pet. Also, I wanted to help because I was going through the same situation and wanted to share a solution:
PLEASE NOTE: This is not the original question, so I am rephrasing it (for privacy purposes)…the original one was a bit harsh and they almost seemed frustrated to the point they were highly considering putting down their pet ONLY because of their incontinence problem (I mean this really shocked me I’m not gonna lie, but this is when you as a pet owner really have to step up your care game in my humble opinion).
Anyways, This Was Their Question:
“Hi folks, I am currently experiencing lots of drama from my family because of my pet. They complain of how awful my place smells because my older pet is constantly having “accidents” on almost every floor around my house. She does this while I’m at work. I can’t smell or deal with this problem. Does anyone have any suggestions?”
Hi! As an anosmic who’s also taking care of two older pets, I definitely know what you’re going through.
I have a 13 year old Doxie and poor thing, she’s been really struggling with holding in her pee during the night (especially now that it’s cold and she refuses to go outside). I have two doxies total and I mistakenly thought it was ok to allow them to sleep next to my bed (in a little bed outside of their kennel). I say mistakenly because after 2-3 nights I noticed I was waking up to a puddle of my doxies’ pee (and I was stepping on it with socks on ggrrrrr!). My male doxie is really good at telling me he needs to go outside, so this is when I pinpointed my girl really can’t hold it in cause she just goes when she’s gotta go 🙁
I feel so bad for her too because I dont want to get mad at her, but it is definitely frustrating. My s.o. was complaining about the awful smell and I was constantly having to mop and clean up the entire bedroom so the smell wasn’t lingering.
But On To The Solution:
#1 Patience. Please remember you won’t have your fur baby around forever. I know it sucks to remember this but knowing this allows you to zoom out of the situation and take a deep breath. Love them always! So make sure to give your doggie lots of hugs and snacks.
# 2 VERY IMPORTANT: Don’t allow her to roam around your entire place while you’re at work, just give her a small section in a corner where she can feel safe in her kennel or better yet, place her inside a bathroom with the door open but fenced in with a child guard. Line the floor with training pads and a thick layer of newspaper underneath them. Tape everything down so it’s not easy to slip. This whole process takes less than 10 minutes daily, but it’s worth it.
I use Smelleze powder to soak up the stink AND spray Poopouri (and it’s helped ALOT). They also have these odor absorbing bags on nodor.com you can place inside the bathroom that’ll help too. I also light fragrant candles and open my windows to air our place out. I’ve also stashed 3 gallons of bleach to have handy and have the bathroom fan on so it’s removing the smell.
It’s a great system that requires a little bit of work, but it’ll be worth your sanity. Hope it helps you 🙂
P.S. For my specific situation, I ended up placing their big kennel next to my bed. They were still next to me, (and could see me) but with their bed inside the kennel. I prepped their space with newspaper and training pads so if Princess had an accident overnight there would be no surprise mess.
Having pets comes with a HUGE responsibility but also with a HUGE abundance of love. This is the biggest lesson I’ve learned from caring for my doxies Churrito (on the right) and my sassy Princess.
Do you have anosmia and pets?
Let me know in the comments below or on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter! @girlwhocantsmell