Due to their association with the inevitable, wills aren’t the most pleasant things to think about. People hardly want to even discuss them. However, it’s something that you’ll likely need to have eventually. After all, everybody dies. That’s sad to say, but that’s the prime reason why something this serious should never be put off. The sooner you get started on your will, the better. Here are a few points for you to consider so that you know it’s time to get a will.

Are You at Least 45 Years Old?

You may have heard the term, “You are now over the hill.” Basically, this means that you have reached the point where you have lived half your life already and are considered to be aging. You might be in denial about this and want to be only as old as you feel. However, as you advance in age, you need to think about the future seriously.

Even if you’re still relatively young (and nowhere close to being 45), you should make a will. We didn’t come to this earth with an expiration date, and so death can come when we least expect it, and so t’s a tremendous disservice to your heirs to avoid making a will.

Are You Prone to Illness?

As people age, their bodies get weaker. During this time, you’ll find yourself more prone to illnesses. Even if you recover from these, you should still be aware of your mortality. Take into account your recent medical history. Have you been going to the hospital frequently? Are you taking more time off work? Be honest with yourself about your health when realizing if you need a will.

You should also take into account your genetic history. Do you know what age your ancestors typically lived to? Do you know if any of them died from any diseases that you may be at risk of getting?

Do You Have an Heir?

If you have a child, it’s important that your will be in place soon after he or she is born. After all, if something were to happen to you, you’d want to have a say in who ended up raising your child. If you have multiple children, this is an especially important thing to consider. If you don’t have a relative or friend who can take in all of your kids, then you’d want to plan who went where ahead of time.

If your children are adults, then it would be best to divide your assets and not leave the decision making of who gets what for everybody to fight about after you pass.

Do You Have Many Assets

The depth of your will depends on how many heirs and assets you have. You might have a substantial net worth to divide. You might also have valuables such as cars to share. Take inventory of everything valuable you own. Assess the value and determine who it should go to. You should also be speaking to your executor as much as possible. Ask them for their best advice regarding the situation. It’s important to hire a professional, such as those with Penguin Insurance Services Inc, who has a thorough understanding of inheritance. Schedule a meeting between yourself, your heirs, and your executor before you pass.

There’s no such thing as starting a will too early. By beginning early, you can reduce anxieties about procrastination. Even if you don’t pass for decades, you’ll be glad you got your will now.

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Like humans, dogs are susceptible to a whole slew of unique and rare illnesses! In fact, there are thousands that lie in the realm of possibility. Many illnesses dogs get can be avoided by good exercise and healthy weight management, although, some diseases are just downright nasty. Below are a few strange diseases to look out for in your dog.

Alopecia X

A medical term meaning abnormal absence of hair, the veterinary community doesn’t completely understand Alopecia X. Dogs with Alopecia X undergo a gradual process of hair loss over the sides of their bodies.

Don’t worry; Alopecia X is a strictly cosmetic concern (unless you live someplace very cold), and needs no treatment.

Aujeszky Disease

Dog not associated with symptoms

Aujeszky Disease, or Pseudorabies, is both an extremely rare and just as fatal disease, usually seen in dogs on farms due to exposure to infected tissue and caused by the a form of the herpes virus. SuHV1 is a herpesvirus, and not related to the rabies.

Signs & Symptoms

  • Sudden change in behavior
  • Excessive salivation
  • Difficult or rapid breathing
  • Fever
  • Vomiting
  • Depression
  • Lethargy
  • Convulsions
  • Reluctance to move
  • Intense pruritis (itching)
  • Self mutilation
  • Coma
  • Sudden death

This disease progresses rapidly, death usually occurring within 48 hours.

Gastric Dilatation and Volvulus

Not exactly a rare disorder, but without a doubt a unique and potentially life threatening one, GSO (or Bloat) occurs when the stomach twists, cutting off the intestines, and fills with gas. Unfortunately, the exact causes are not clearly known, but rapid eating, growth and breed size seem to all play a role.

The stomach fills with gas and distends, eventually putting pressure on the diaphragm as well as cutting off return blood flow to the heart. The extreme pressure eventually causes tissues to die, leading to stomach rupture and possible spleen damage.

At that point, if prior measures aren’t taken to alleviate pressure, death is likely to result.

Malignant Hyperthermia

Dog not associated with symptoms

Normal, everyday things like regular activities, excitement, or stress can give dogs with this rare disorder dangerously high body temperatures. Unlike most dogs, their muscles will contract and then fail to relax normally, causing muscle twitches and spasms.

Such high body temperatures can lead to dangerous metabolic shifts, such as:

  • Rapid and uneven heart rhythm
  • Organ failure
  • Death

Ectopic Ureter

Dog not associated with symptoms

Does it seem like housetraining just isn’t possible? Your pup may be one of the unique few to have an Ectopic Ureter.

Ureters are the tubs carrying urine from the kidneys to the bladder. A rare birth defect sometimes causes one or both of these tubes to empty away from their normal bladder location, often requiring surgery.

Myasthenia Gravis

An especially unique disorder affecting the connection between nerves and muscles, Myasthenia Gravis normally derives from the dog’s own immune system attacking his neuromuscular junctions, but thyroid disorders, cancer, or birth defects (among others) could be the culprit to blame.

This, of course, usually results in muscle weakness, sometimes even affecting the entire body!

Vogt-Koyanagi-Harada Syndrome

Dog not associated with symptoms

Try saying Vogt-Koyanagi-Harada Syndrome five times fast! This odd disorder results in eye problems and abnormal whitening of body tissues. Results of the eyes can include:

  • Red eyes
  • Tearing
  • Poor vision
  • Blindness
  • Squinting
  • Discomfort in bright light

A combination of medications is normally administered in order to reduce inflammation and suppress the immune system at infected areas.


If you notice something seems to be off about your own dog or his behavior, call your veterinarian for advice! The culprit may not be one of the above, but it is just as important to catch disorders early, before they have a chance to become bigger problems, causing more harm!