Cognitive Dysfunction

Has your pet ever done something out of the ordinary and you hear yourself thinking “he’s just getting old?” Perhaps you thought your furry family member is going senile? Well, you may be right; there is a condition of animal senility called Cognitive Dysfunction.

Cognitive dysfunction has a similar appearance to Alzheimer’s disease in humans. Owners may notice changes in their beloved pet such as changes in activity level, new patterns of interaction with their family, new sleeping patterns and excessive vocalizing.

The mechanism behind the cause of cognitive dysfunction is not known, but research suspects it is similar to humans – a build-up of sticky proteins around the cells of the brain which disrupts the transmission of signals.

If you’re worried that your pet may have cognitive dysfunction, it is important that your veterinarian rule out all serious medical conditions first. Your veterinarian may provide you with a checklist, called DISHAA, to help you identify if your pet is exhibiting signs of cognitive dysfunction.

Treatment for cognitive dysfunction includes managing your pets’ environment – providing extra bathroom breaks, a night light or a new daily routine. There are special diets to help your senior pet with cognitive dysfunction that is fortified with medium-chain triglycerides and antioxidants. Ask your vet if one of these diets might be right for your pet.

Watching your special furry family member get older can be hard, but with the help of your veterinarian, you can bring in their golden years with a smile on your face.

Written by: Dr. Leah Kahn, DVM



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Last updated: April 11, 2022

We are so happy to announce that our doctors are now seeing clients and patients in the hospital. Please read on for more information about how your next appointment will work.

Masks are mandatory for indoor service
Limit 1 person admitted per appointment

1. Please come to the FRONT door on time for your appointment and call us to check-in. The seating area in our waiting room is not yet available
2. At your appointment time, we will guide you and your pet directly into an examination room where you may wait for the veterinarian.
3. Please be advised, there is a time limit set for each appointment that we must adhere to in order to avoid keeping the next patient waiting.
4. After your appointment, you may now check out at the front desk.
5. If you are LATE for your appointment, we will attempt to accommodate you for a shorter time with the doctor. If you are more than 5 minutes late, please reschedule.
6. We respect your concerns for safety. If you prefer a curbside appointment, please let us know when you call to book your pet.


In order to accommodate clients and pets for appointments, we need to limit the capacity of people in our reception area. For this reason, we have elected to temporarily provide curbside service only for pet supply orders.

Please call ahead to order pet foods and prescriptions. We will bring them outside when you arrive to pick them up. Thank you for your consideration.


Our veterinarians are currently seeing all patients by appointment ONLY. We are currently operating with both curbside and in office appointments. We have limited capacity to accommodate indoor appointments but please let us know your preference at the time of booking and we will do our very best to accommodate your request. Please note, for safety reasons, you will be asked to wait behind a clear screen while speaking with the veterinarian. Your pet will be examined by the veterinarian while one of our assistants holds them. We appreciate your patience and understanding as these appointments take a little longer than normal.  

How do curbside / closed-door appointments work?
Please come to the back door for your appointment and call 416-537-3128 upon arrival. A veterinarian will speak with you over the phone and a veterinary assistant will come out to collect your pet for an examination. After examining your pet, the doctor will follow-up on the phone with their findings and recommendations. Thank you for entrusting us with the care of your pets. Please let us know in advance if they have any special needs.

Payment Methods:
We are currently accepting all payment methods. However, credit or debit cards are preferred.


Thank you for your patience and understanding and we look forward to seeing you and your furry family members again!

- The team at Annex Animal Hospital