Demand for canine nursing homes is rising in Japan as elderly dog owners struggle to look after their aging charges who often require special care.

With improved diet and medical treatment, dogs are living longer, but their aging owners, especially those in failing health, are increasingly worried about how their beloved pets will live out their last days.

Yuko Ishizeki, 50, decided to leave her family's female shiba inu Koro, 18, at the pet nursing facility Tokyo Pet Home in April after her mother Takako, 81, developed dementia and could no longer take care of the dog, who was suffering from leg problems and a loss of appetite.