Index

Introduction
Homeostasis
Life Span
Systems
Regulatory Functions
Nervous System
Eyes
Ears
Nose
Tongue
Brain
Endocrine System
Hypothalmus
Pituitary
Thyroid
Adrenal
Nutritional Functions
Excretary Functions
Urinary System
Kidney
Bladder
Colon
Distributive Functions
Cardiovascular System
Blood
Respiratory System
Protective Functions
Reproductive Functions
Musculo-Skeletal System
Cancer
Arthritis
Obesity
Diabetes
Cushing's Disease
Heart Disease
Teeth
Skin and Coat
Conclusion
References


Systems - Brain

Older dogs face the prospect of senile dementia (senility) just as do humans. The glucose utilization rate of the cerebral cortex drops by almost half between youth and old age. Interestingly, dogs and rats are the only non-primates known in old age to develop neuritic plaques in their brains that resemble those of humans with Alzheimer's disease.viii

Brain cell apoptosis (genetically programmed cell death) could account for dementia in aged dogs and suggested that aged dogs may be useful as a simplified animal model for Alzheimer's disease in man.ix While aging dogs do suffer from strokes, the incidence rate is far less than in humans. Sleep disorders in old age are not uncommon, nor are behavioral changes such as development of separation anxiety, increased vocalization, and shyness.

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