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I have a 12 year old chocolate lab that to this day since we moved into our new house (3 years ago) has always lived on the incloseded porch. She is old and has a bladder and bowel problem where she can't control when she goes. The vet checked her out and she's healthy. It's just the age. We want her to be a complete outside dog in a dog run we have in the back of one of our barns. We used to use it for our 2 pit bull puppies that are now a year but they can jump over the fence. We live in Maryland so it can get hot. Very hot in the summer so I was wondering what supplies I can get to keep her happy cooling pads ect. I already have an igloo we don't use and there is a door for her to go into a kennel in the barn. It would be around the same temp as when she was in the porch because it wasn't connected to heat/AC so if you have any tips please feel free to share.
 

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Don't really have any advice for you, just wondering why after so many years you want to move her from where she is?
She can't control when she goes to the bathroom so things like being in a crate on the porch when no one is home doesn't work because she goes then has to wait for people to come home to clean her up. Then being left out she stains the wood, smells up the porch, ect. And after 3 years the porch looked disgusting even after being cleaned top to bottom with Oder control, bleach ect. We also want to be able to use that porch for actually sitting in not a dog kennel pretty much
 

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Have you considered finding a way to gate of a portion of the porch and lay down some sort of flooring that does not absorb fluids? I would also not put your old incontinent dog in a crate. I don't feel it's fair for her to be put in a kennel in a barn. She's in her golden years and this is the time where she needs her people most. Sorry to not be much more of a help, just the way I feel.
 

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Just thought of another option. How about attaching a kennel to the house? If she has an accident, the urine will absorb into the ground and poop can be cleaned up easily in the grass. At least this way she will still be relatively close to you. Not the most ideal, but better than alone in a barn.
 

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Gonna try to be diplomatic.

It's extremely hard on elderly pets to be changing their living arrangements like you are proposing doing. Any change is very upsetting to them, especially when they can still basically see, smell, and sense where they used to stay which will be the case with your elderly girl.

Talk to your vet about pills to help with incontinence. Layer news paper, or put down puppy pads to catch the bowel movements. Look into getting her dog diapers. Do what it takes to let her live out her remaining years where she is most comfortable. Your deck can be sanded and refinished when she passes on.

I do understand where you are coming from, I do know the frustration of having to deal with accidents, I went through it with my two former dogs. My girl became incontinent, but loved to sleep on my couch, I put down a baby, rubber backed, mattress pad on the couch at night so that she could sleep up there and not ruin my couch. I eventually got her the incontinence pills which did help but I still wonder what it did to her overall health. She was younger then your dog though.

My old, elderly, boy had pee accidents when I left the house, even if it was only 10 minutes, due to anxiety caused by going suddenly blind. I put him in a small area and papered the floor with taped down puppy pads. We worked though that and the accidents lessened, then came the accidents from him going senile and forgetting to let me know he needed to go out. I got really good at timing taking him out on a set schedule and that helped with those accidents. The last week of his life I scrubbed my floor because of his nearly uncontrollable diarrhea, and did my best to keep him on the puppy pads. All that took place over the course of nearly 2 years. I never once considered making him stay outside where he would have been extremely stressed, he gave me his all in his younger years, he deserved my all in his elderly ones. I scrubbed the heck out of my carpet after he passed away.
 

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I'm thankful for all of the suggestions to try and keep her near me. 1. We have tried the pills and other treatments to try and help and sadly she had a very bad reaction to them so we had to stop. 2. We don't want to keep her in the porch anymore because whenever you open the door to go out into it to get to the laundry room the smell is like a kick in the gut. 3. We are not able to put an extension up because that would be more money. 4. Yes it may be stressful for her and maybe even bad for her but she is still going to be moved outside. And yes I know it's a very debatable thing to make a dog live outside and stuff like that but I chose to do it already. I haven't yet and don't plan to when it's still winter but by spring time I would like it for her to be out in the barn. She still will be getting daily interaction just like normal just outside. All I need are tips, things to keep her cool and all that fun stuff.
 

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If the porch smells that strongly even after cleaning messes it won't stop smelling even if she doesn't live there anymore. It sounds like the messes have soaked into the floor or wood and it will probably have to be refinished/replaced to get rid of the odor. Just wanted to mention that.
Secure housing out of the elements, with fans, air conditioners or heaters depending on weather, and safe from wild animals is about all you can do to keep her comfortable. But I, like everyone who has already commented really don't think living out there would be good for her. That's a big change for such an old dog, and on top of that if she has a medical emergency she could pass away before you even notice. Just something to think about.
 

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Your dog is 12 years old. Larger breed dogs don't live as long as some smaller breeds, she may pass at any given moment at 12 years. The damage has already been done to your porch, so can you honestly not wait a little longer for her to pass before having her in the barn? I hope you spend a decent amount of time in the barn in case her health declines and needs assistance or simply to give her added attention in her golden years.
 

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Yes it may be stressful for her and maybe even bad for her but she is still going to be moved outside.
Dude, I gotta say, that's pretty cold. :eyeroll:
 

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It's funny - my parents grew up in families where dogs were strictly outdoors. When they married and bought their own farm, they followed the same rule.

With our last three older dogs, though, they transitioned them indoors once they reached about 8-10 years old. I don't remember why really - it was cold that winter and it just stuck, I guess. Two of them have passed since and one is still alive (in addition to our other two dogs who were never made outdoor dogs).

Even after my Sheltie went through kidney failure and had to wear belly bands because he struggled to control himself; even after my Lab mix got sick that one time and we had to put her in a tile room for 24 hours because she couldn't control herself...my parents have BOTH said they are glad they moved them inside. We were able to spend more time with them. We live on a farm - we spend plenty of time outdoors - but the dogs were able to come in and out with us, which was great. It was also far more climate controlled which was easier on their bodies. They really did seem happier. And when it was time for them to pass on, we were able to be with them for that too.

Ultimately, you'll probably do what you want and to heck with us "dog crazy nuts". But is it really so hard to buy some rubber flooring and put it down? My Lab mix passed at 12 - she started with "minor" health problems that very quickly snowballed, so you may not have to deal with this for much longer anyway. But wouldn't you rather be near your beloved dog for the time you have left, instead of relegating her farther out and convincing yourself that you'll spend time with her? Maybe not.
 

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4. Yes it may be stressful for her and maybe even bad for her but she is still going to be moved outside. And yes I know it's a very debatable thing to make a dog live outside and stuff like that but I chose to do it already. I haven't yet and don't plan to when it's still winter but by spring time I would like it for her to be out in the barn. She still will be getting daily interaction just like normal just outside. All I need are tips, things to keep her cool and all that fun stuff.
I honestly don't think you deserve her, if you aren't willing to put up with the smell until she passes. It isn't what's best for you that matters, it's whats best for the dog. Her being punted out to the barn because something she cant control is a inconvenience for you is selfish and down right cruel. Change stresses older dogs out, and as stated larger breeds don't live as long. She could die before the snow melts for all you know, and if she lives till spring she could die then. Alone. Which if you loved this dog at all you'd regret. I could never even consider making either of my dogs live outside for any reason, let alone something they couldn't control.

I inherited my grandpas wolfdog when he died, but because the wolfdog was 14 i let my cousins take care of him so he didn't have to be stressed by me dragging him down to florida. I wanted him, i loved that dog. But i did what was best for the DOG not myself.
 

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If that comes off mean i'm sorry, but outdoor dogs as a general are a sore spot for me. Let alone moving a elderly dog because of something it can't control.
 
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This makes me seriously mad. That lab has been a pet for 12 years. You should have been expecting age related issues when you first got a dog. Guess what, my 11 year old corgi mix is starting to have bladder issues too, and I would never dream of putting him outside. Get your dog to the vet and ask for pills to help strengthen her bladder a little. This has helped my dog a lot. Your dog has been your companion, your friend for 12 years, and now you just going to cast her out? I'm sorry, but this is seriously unacceptable. Even just leaving her out on the porch is borderline cruel. Why did you get a dog in the first place if you didn't want to deal with these problems? Why get a dog if she is just supposed to spend her life outside?
This lab is in her golden years, and needs to be around people.
 

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One huge thing to consider is that if she is incontinent, she probably gets urine/feces on her at times, and in an outdoor dog, that is an open invitation for flies and maggots to stop in to visit. If you can't find someplace closed off from outdoor pests, it may be in her best interest to have her euthanized. If you don't want to euthanize her, it's up to you to continue to provide her adequate care and comfort in her old age, whether that means dealing with her messing up your house or finding other suitable living space where her health and social needs won't be neglected.
 

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Yeah sorry, I can't agree with what you are planning on doing. Stressing her out and putting her in less than ideal living conditions for your own convenience is not very nice.

If you can't find a way to cater to her and help her live out her last bit of time in comfort, then I agree that you should consider euthanasia.
 
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